Top 5 Contenders for the Best Young Player Award at UEFA Euro 2024

John 6 Min Read

Besides the renowned veterans like Cristiano Ronaldo, Thomas Muller, and Robert Lewandowski, Euro 2024 will also be about the new crop of supremely talented youngsters, who have already emerged as stars for their clubs.

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Let us have a look at the top 5 favourites to win the Best Young Player Award at the 2024 UEFA European Championships:

#5 Xavi Simons

Xavi Simons is only 21 years of age but his talent has been a topic of discussion for many years, as when he was just 16, Paris Saint-Germain moved heaven and earth to lure him from Barcelona’s La Masia academy. 

Since then, he has not been able to get into PSG’s main squad but has done well for every other team he has represented. After an excellent 2022-23 season for PSV Eindhoven, where he scored 22 goals, the Dutch attacker represented RB Leipzig. 

Across four competitions, he had a whopping 25 goal contributions in 43 matches, including 10 goals and 15 assists. Recently, he also scored his maiden international goal for the Oranje, getting into the scoresheet during a 4-0 win against Iceland. 

#4 Florian Wirtz

Florian Wirtz was on the scoresheet against Germany (Image from Getty)

Florian Wirtz is among the main reasons behind Bayer Leverkusen’s Bundesliga win in the 2023-24 season, and with his performance in the Euro 2024 opener against Scotland, the German attacker has proved that he is not merely a one-season wonder but a generational talent.

In the last season for Xabi Alonso’s team, Wirtz had 38 goal contributions in 49 matches, which included 18 goals and 20 assists. Not only was he influential in the Bundesliga campaign, but he also scored 4 goals and got 4 assists in the Europa League as well.

For the national team, Wirtz has scored 2 goals so far. The first of those goals came in a friendly against France earlier this year, while the second goal came in this tournament UEFA. 

#3 Lamine Yamal

While every other player we will talk about is above the age of 20, Lamine Yamal is still only 16 years of age and is already being considered among the hot prospects, which speaks volumes about his potential. 

Another La Masia graduate, Yamal had 17 goal contributions for Barcelona last year, comprising 7 goals and 10 assists. One of those assists even came in a quarter-final tie against PSG UEFA.

For Spain, the youngster has had an amazing start as he has scored 2 goals and got 5 assists in only 8 matches so far. He scored in his debut against Georgia in the Euro 2024 qualifiers and then against Cyprus. Meanwhile, by assisting in Spain’s season opener against Croatia, he became the youngest player to get an assist in the continental competition.

#2 Jamal Musiala

Jamal Musiala has already scored thrice for Germany (Image from Getty)

Like Wirtz and Yamal, Jamal Musiala is another player who has already shown his talent in this tournament. The 21-year-old German winger scored a superb goal and was impressive throughout the 5-1 win against Scotland UEFA.

Having blossomed in Chelsea’s Cobham academy and represented England till the U-21 level, Musiala moved to Germany when he was 16. Since then, he has been a vital cog in Bayern Munich’s team. Although the Bavarians could not win the Bundesliga last season, Musiala scored 12 goals and got 8 assists.

For the national team, he has scored 3 goals and got 5 assists so far. Apart from the last goal against Scotland, he has scored against North Macedonia in a UEFA World Cup qualifier match and against the United States of America in an international friendly. 

#1 Jude Bellingham UEFA

Jude Bellingham might still be placed on these lists, but truth be told, he is already a level above every one of his age. At only 20 years of age, the English midfielder is already considered among the best footballers in the world and is also likely to be among the frontrunners to win the Ballon d’Or this year.

Despite playing in midfield, Bellingham scored 23 goals and got 13 assists for Real Madrid last season, helping Los Blancos lift both the UEFA Champions League and the La Liga.

That being said, he is yet to unlock his best version in an England shirt. In 29 matches for the Three Lions, Bellingham has got 5 assists and scored 3 goals which have come against Iran, Scotland, and Belgium.

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