In this article, we’ll be looking at the new familiar faces that elite teams have implemented into their sides for the 2016/17 football season. Ranging from youngsters, to late bloomers, these guys have forced their way into the first eleven due their impressive skill set, and consistency.
GK: Gianluigi Donnarumma
As seen from the cover art, we’ve chosen the new hot prospect to surpass Gianluigi Buffon in Italian goalkeeping: Gianluigi Donnarumma, who has impressed recently, for brilliant performances in the Calcio A, especially against Juventus (video below).
We are sure that he will reach his potential in the coming years to be as good as Buffon himself, and bring Milan back to their glory days.
RB: Antonio Barragan
This was a bit of a strange one, recently Antonio was overlooked at Valencia, struggling to get into the first team behind Mario Gaspar. However, Barragan took a challenging move to Middlesborough in the English Premier League, to which he has blossomed in a surprising Boro side to kick off the year, you can see his exclusive interview with Boro TV below:
CB: Niklas Sule
We’ve chosen the Hoffenheim centre-back for our next pick. Sule’s strengths become apparent in the air due to his 6′ 3” stature. However, Sule’s technical ability has potential of world-class defending, Niklas Sule’s blocking and tackling helps a mediocre Hoffenheim team gain such a high position in the Bundesliga, watch some of his highlight of the 2015/16 Bundesliga season below:
We’re expected Sule to make further appearances for the German national team, and reach his potential to combat the claim of Germany’s best centre back, rivaling Shkodran Mustafi, Jerome Boateng, Mats Hummels and Benedict Howedes.
CB: Kevin Vogt
For the other centre back spot, we’ve surprisingly chose the other half of Hoffenheim’s centre back pairing. Vogt, 25, is considered a late bloomer in this list, with Vogt being a specialist of blocking and making important tackles for Hoffenheim.
LB: Álex Grimaldo
The Valencia born defender joined the Barcelona youth system in 2008, after exciting performances he was promoted to the Barcelona B-Team and made his official debut on the 4th of September 2009.
Unfortunately, he was never promoted to the main team because in 2009, Grimaldo’s contract was about to expire and The Portuguese side Benfica saw that this was the perfect opportunity to sign the promising full back. As a result he is currently impressing in the Primeira Liga, and has scored 2 and assisted 2 in 8 games. We can see from these statistic that he is a fantastic passer of the ball and dribbler.
RM: Ousmane Dembélé
Dembélé begun his career for the Rennes reserves team and then after a year got promoted to the main team. After impressing for the main team and scoring just under a goal a game, he later moved to Borussia Dortmund on a 5-year deal.
With his electrifying dribbling, we expect Ousmane to be one of the best Bundesliga midfielders in the coming years, here’s a few of his highlights below:
LM: Alex Iwobi
The 20-year-old has became a starter in the Arsenal eleven in the previous weeks, and has showcased his amazing dribbling talents to help move the ball to the likes of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil; playing alongside them has really helped his game and we expect him to become one of the most talented youngsters Arsenal and Nigeria have ever seen.
Here are some of his highlights below:
CAM: Marco Asensio
Marco Asensio has become a revelation at Madrid since moving into the starting eleven of Real Madrid, furthermore, under Zidane’s coaching; Asensio has improved his dribbling and instant impact since coming on for Real. Our expectations of him lead to him being one of the best young central midfielders in the world and definitely the best CAM in La Liga Santander in the coming years.
CAM: Leon Bailey
With a national team redundant of a young talent, Leon Bailey rejuvenates the Jamaican scene in terms of being one of the most hyped up players of the next generation. Leon currently plays for Genk where he is tearing up the Pro League with his acceleration and dribbling; we also expect him to become a great prospect in the coming years, here are his higlights below:
ST: Anthony Modeste
A late-bloomer in our list, Anthony Modeste has been carrying Koln on his back in the Bundesliga with his mass scoring ability; including amazing traits of stregth and finishing (even beating the likes of Manuel Neuer to aid Koln to a draw with Bayern.) Modeste has proven himself to become a solid goal scorer and we expect to get even better. Here is the highlights of his amazing season so far.
ST: Alassane Plea
With Mario Balotelli re-joining OGC Nice in the summer, Allasane Plea has had to up his game to retain his place in the Nice starting eleven; and he has done, Plea has kicked off the Ligue 1 season in great form and may even get a national call-up soon if he carries on, with Nice leading the Ligue 1 this season, Alassane Plea will have to continue his stellar form to make Nice real title contenders in the coming months. Here are some of his highlights below:
Written and Edited: Sebastian Castaneda and Dom Sant