FIFA U-17 World Cup is the perfect platform for young players to show case their talent to the world. The next edition of the U-17 tournament will be in India and we are expected to have high octane football matches. We are looking at few top talents who could set the tournament on fire.
U-17 World Cup Stars of tomorrow
Abel Ruiz (Spain)
Abel Ruiz, 17, is one of those players that has to be looked after on his way to the top. He looks strong not just over the ball but mentally as well. His performance in U-17 World Cup will definitely be worth watching.
The forward comes from the famous La Masia Academy which he joined in 2012 from Valencia CF. Ruiz scored 10 goals and assisted 3 from 12 appearances during their journey from their qualification match till the title winning finals.
He captained the side to their 9th European U-17 title.He is the first player from the 2000s to make an appearance for the club’s senior ranks. He recently scored his first professional second appearance for Barcelona B in the Segunda Division. Spaniard was the part of the Team of the tournament.
Amine Gouri (France)
The Frenchman wears no.9 for the National side and is the key goalscorer. Having blessed with skills and speed looks lethal up front. He is the hottest prospect of Olympique Lyonnais, and we could see him among the French greats in future.
Gouri was the top scorer during the Euro Under-17 with eight goals to his name, and the 17-year-old is expected to do great things in the upcoming World Cup in India.
Jadon Sancho (England)
Sancho was named as the UEFA U-17 Championship Player of the tournament, for his spectacular display of football. English Junior international joined Watford Academy as a kid, then at the age of 14, Manchester City signed him in 2015.
Sancho impressed everyone at the club before leaving the club over assurances of playing time on a new contract. In 2017, he left Manchester City for Borussia Dortmund for a fee reported to be in the region of £8m and was immediately included in the first team squad taking the number 7 recently vacated by Ousmane Dembele.
The midfielder scored 5 and assisted 5 for England U-17 in their journey to the final of the UEFA U-17 Championship.
Daniel Lopez (Mexico)
Daniel Lopez scored 6 goals in the CONCACAF tournament finished second highest goalscorer behind Carlos of Honduras.
He was also a part of the CONCACAF Team of the tournament. He also assisted 3 goals in the tournament. Lopez wears no.9 and which literally defines his role. He is strong over the ball and lethal finishing marks his abilities.
He can be the future of the Mexican Football.Currently, at Club Tijuana, he made senior club debut in a 0-2 loss to Cruz Azul.
Jann-Fiete Arp (Germany)
Germany’s no. 9, Jann-Fiete Arp scored 7 goals for Germany, second most in the tournament. He was awarded the prestigious Fritz Walter medal.
The Hamburg striker signalled his intent from the first game in Croatia after netting a 13-minute hat-trick in a 5-0 success against Bosnia and Herzegovina. Rather than Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, Arp has cited Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane as a role model since he plays in a similar way.
In terms of his own game, the lanky teenager feels he has a lot of the qualities required to be a potent forward but also knows that there is still progress to be made.
Vinicius Jr. (Brazil)
This teen sensation wears no.11 for the National side and it has been already tagged in as the “new Neymar”.
Vinicius is set to join Spanish Giants Real Madrid in 2019. His deal reportedly worth €45 million with the La Liga and Champions League title holders in May.
Brazilian teenager Vinicius Junior gave Real Madrid fans a glimpse of the future after scoring his first professional goal for Flamengo. He was the top scorer of the U-17 South American Championship. He had 7 goals to his name and also won the best player of the tournament award.
The Brazilian visited India in 2016 for the BRICS Cup. He finished as the top scorer of the tournament with 4 goals.
Josh Sargent (USA)
Josh Sargent has burst onto the mainstream U.S. Soccer scene, leading the USA U-17 national team to World Cup qualification. He even represented USA U-20 side in the U-20 world cup.
He scored 14 goals and has seven assists in 29 international games before helping the USA qualify for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup this past April, where he scored five goals and had two assists. The American scored twice against Mexico.
According to reports, he has signed for the Werder Bremen which he will be joining once he turns 18.
Takefusa Kubo (Japan)
The 16-year-old, most talented kid in Asia made his senior debut for FC Tokyo at the age of 15. He became the second youngest rookie in J.League history after Takayuki Morimoto in 2004.
Kubo was spotted by scouts of the Spanish club at the tender age of nine. The Catalan Giants were quick to sign the talented player. He was soon heading west to spend almost three years at the Masia training camp where he scored for fun. Japanese came back to Japan after Barca were hit by a transfer ban. Like Messi, Kubo is small in stature and has a slight frame.
He uses his low centre of gravity, fine balance, and extraordinary ball control to bamboozle opposition defenders. Again, just like Messi. He uses his left foot and is a free-kick specialist. He impressed everyone at the AFC U-16 Championship held in India last year scoring 4 goals.
Kubo will be an integral part of the Japan team for U-17 World Cup.