Greenwood, Saka, Pedri: Who is the best wonderkid in world football right now?

Best wonderkids in world football

With both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo now in their mid-30s, much has been made about their likely successors at the top of the world game. 

Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland have both been heralded as the next generation of leading global stars but the two are not alone in that. Indeed, perhaps we’re not entering a new dawn, one where more than two players can realistically fight it out for the biggest individuals honours in the game. 

Looking to the future, the CIES Football Observatory have named the top 100 teenagers in world football. Eager to delve deep into future stars, GIVEMESPORT have taken a closer look.

100 – 90

100. Reda Slim – (FAR Rabat)

99. Shinya Nakano – (Sagan Tosu)

98. Adam Karabec – (Sparta Prague)

97. Yerson Chacon – (Deportivo Tachira)

96. Konstantin Tyukavin – (Dinamo Moscow} 

95. Carlos Vivas – (Deportivo Tachira)

94. Ziga Laci – (AEK Athens)

93. Luciano Ferreyra – (Rosario Central) 

92. Adam Stejskal – (FC Liefering) 

91. Krystof Danek – (Sigma Olomouc)

90. Xavier Dziekonsi – (Jagiellonia Bialystok) 

Not exactly a group of household names at the moment but it’s interesting to note that Deportivo Tachira of Venezuela bost two of the top 100 teenagers in the world right now. 

Becir Omeragic

89 – 80

89. Aleksandr Shestyuk – (Dinamo Brest) 

88. Jordy Evans – (Deportivo Saprissa) 

87. Victor Kristansen – (FC Copenhagen) 

86. Andre Amaro – (Vitoria Guimaraes) 

85. Kamaldeen Sulemana – (Rennes) 

84. Luka Sucic – (Red Bull Salzburg) 

83. Victor Guzman – (Club Tijuana) 

82. Julian Aude – (Lanus) 

81. Becir Omeragic – (FC Zurich) 

80. Jeyson Chura – (The Strongest)

Interesting to see only one representative from one of Europe’s major five leagues (Ligue 1) in the next batch of wonderkids. Indeed, perhaps the bigger clubs on the continent will have to pay some of these teams a pretty penny in the future. 

Taylor Harwood-Bellis

79 – 70 

79. Nathaniel Moreira – (Cortiba)

78. Gianluca Busio – (Sporting Kansas City) 

77. Ander Barrenetxea – (Real Socieded) 

76. Santiago Munoz – (Santos Laguna) 

75. Louis D’Arrigo (Adelaide United) 

74. Oliver Rose-Villadsen (FC Nordsjælland) 

73. Julio Enciso (Club Libertad) 

72. Jakub Kaminski (Lech Poznan)

71. Taylor Harwood-Bellis – (Anderlecht, on loan from Manchester City) 

70. Benjamin Sesko – (Red Bull Salzburg) 

Now, we’re starting to see some more recognisable names in terms of clubs. Interestingly, City’s Taylor Harwood-Bellis is the first English player included on the list. 

Nemanja Jovic

69 – 60

69. Aleksandar Vasiljevic – (FK Metalac) 

68. Nemanja Jovic – (FK Partizan) 

67. Josko Gvardiol – (Dinamo Zagreb) 

66. Jon Aramburu – (Deportivo La Guaira)

65. Maskim Mukhin – (CSKA Moscow)

64. Gaston Avila – (Rosario Central) 

63. Gabriel Pirani – (Santos)

62. Stefan Baiaram – (Universitatea Craiova)

61. Juan Sforza – (Newell’s Old Boys) 

60. Jose Hurtado – (Inepdentiente del Valle) 

This batch is largely made up of players from either Eastern Europe or South America. Looking like two hotbeds of the next major footballing talents, it’s worth keeping an eye on their domestic leagues. 

Fabio Silva

59 – 50

59. Liel Abada – (Celtic) 

58. Cristian Dumitru – (Arges Pitesti)

57. Stelios Andreou – (RSC Charleroi) 

56. Daniel Gonzalez (Santiago Wanderers) 

55. Karim Adeyemi – (Red Bull Salzburg) 

54. Jamal Musiala – (Bayern Munich)

53. Ryotaro Araki – (Kashima Antlers) 

52. Christos Tzolis – (PAOK FC)

51. Fabio Silva – (Wolves) 

50 Mario Vuskovic – (Hadjuk Split) 

We have our first representative who’s currently playing in the Premier League. Wolves’ Fabio Silva might not have set the world alight during his first season on British soil but, at 19, the Portuguese certainly has time on his side. 

Ilaix Moriba

49 – 40

49. Marco John – (Hoffenheim) 

48. Tomas Suslov – (Groningen) 

47. Sotirios Alexandropoulos – (Panathinaikos) 

46. Devyne Rensch – (Ajax)

45. Arnau Martinez – (Girona) 

44. Ilaix Moriba – (Barcelona) 

43. Michael Olise – (Crystal Palace) 

42. Alan Velasco – (Indepentiente) 

41. Yan Couto – (Girona) 

40. Armando Borja – (Southampton, on loan from Chelsea) 

Now we’re starting to see powerhouses emerge. Ajax, Chelsea and Barcelona all feature and Girona’s partnership with the City Football Group sees them start to appear more regularly. 

Kaio Jorge

39 – 30

39. Cristian Medina – (Boca Juniors) 

38. Arsen Zakharyan – (Dinamo Moscow) 

37. Joao Pedro – (Watford) 

36. Jeyson Rojas – (Colo Colo)

35. Kaio Jorge – (Juventus) 

34. Adam Hlozek – (Sparta Prague) 

33. Hugo Siquet (Standard Liege) 

32. Tiago Tomas – (Sporting Lisbon) 

31. Adrien Truffert (Rennes) 

30. Armel Bella-Kotchap (VfL Bochum) 

The future of South American football is looking bright, given how prominent players hailing from that part of the world are starting to appear. In terms of international football, perhaps the recent European dominance at the World Cup will soon be a thing of the past. 

Eric Martel

29 – 20

29. Facundo Farias – (Colon)

28. Nathaniel Mbuku – (Stade de Reims) 

27. Matias Arezo – (River Plate) 

26. Dogan Alemdar – (Kayserispor) 

25. Maarten Vandevoordt – (KRC Gent) 

24. Anouar El Hadj – (Anderlecht) 

23. Martin Vitik – (Sparta Prague) 

22. Leonidas Stergiou – (St Gallen)

21. Eric Martel – (Austria Wien)

20. Illia Zabarnyi – (Dynamo Kyiv) 

Belgium boast two entries here which, again, is promising for their international future considering we are seemingly coming towards the end of their much-celebrated ‘Golden Generation’. 

Sparta Prague, meanwhile, look to have quite the academy to work with. 

Jude Bellingham

19 – 10

19. Renan da Silva – (Palmeiras) 

18. Omar Campos – (Sanos Laguna) 

17. Bruno Praxedes – (RB Bragantino) 

16. Pape Sarr – (Metz) 

15. Octavian Popescu – (FCSB) 

14. Eduardo Camavinga – (Rennes)

13. Giovani Reyna – (Borussia Dortmund) 

12. Lucas Calegari – (Fluminese) 

11. Florian Wirtz – (Bayer Leverkusen) 

10. Jude Bellingham – (Borussia Dortmund) 

Eduardo Camavinga and Jude Bellingham are two of the most exciting midfielders in the European game at the moment, so it’s of little surprise to see how highly they rank. 

In Gio Reyna, the USMNT might have their next Captain America, too. 


9 – 1

9. Jeremy Doku – (Rennes)

8. Fabricio Diaz – (Liverpool Uruguay) 

7. Bukayo Saka – (Arsenal

6. Goncalo Inacio – (Sporting Lisbon)

5. Mattheus Martinelli – (Fluminese)

4. Ryan Gravenberch – (Ajax)

3. Nuno Mendes (Sporting Lisbon)

2. Mason Greenwood – (Manchester United

1. Pedri – (Barcelona

In a post-Messi world, Barcelona’s jewel appears to be the excellent Pedri, who has taken football by storm in 2021 amid his ridiculously busy schedule, 

Buyako Saka and Mason Greenwood are two of the most exciting young players in the Premier League at the moment and could become huge parts of England’s bid to win the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. 

Indeed, the future of football is looking very bright. 

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