As the 2018 World Cup in Russia approaches, it is time to take a look at some of the young stars that are going to be on show at the tournament. Every four years at the World Cup, we usually see an abundance of young players who breakthrough and become household names, and the upcoming event in Russia looks to be no different.
Here are our top five young players to watch at Russia 2018:
Gabriel Jesus – Brazil
Jesus will be 21 when the World Cup arrives, and this will be his first moment to really shine on the world stage. He has forced his way into not only his national team Brazil, but also his club team Manchester City and has been scoring for fun throughout 2017 in all competitions. Brazil should go far in the tournament, and if they do then expect to see Jesus involved in a lot of their play.
Andrija Zivkovic – Serbia
While Serbia are not expected to perform too well at the World Cup, many eyes will be on them to see how Andrija Zivkovic performs in the tournament. He moved to Benfica in 2016 and used last season to settle in Portugal, and already he is showing big signs of improvement this season. He has only made six appearances for Serbia so far, but expect to see and hear a lot more about him in the build up to the finals, before he breaks out on the world stage in Russia.
Leroy Sane – Germany
Leroy Sane took a little time to adjust to life in the Premier League with Manchester City, but since then he has been in electrifying form for them, contributing with a lot of goals and assists. He has also impressed against some of the best clubs in Europe in the Champions League and this summer the World Cup will arrive at just the right time for him. He will be a key part of the German team and with them expected to go far, expect to see a lot of him with the ball causing havoc for the opposing defensive players.
Andre Silva – Portugal
Although he is nowhere near retirement just yet, Portugal are already on the lookout for the next Cristiano Ronaldo and in Andre Silva they may have found him. The young striker tore up the Portuguese league last season, earning a move to AC Milan in the summer. Add to that his fantastic international goal scoring record at all levels, including senior level and it is easy to see why those within Portuguese football are hugely excited by Silva. This summer he will get the chance to perform on the world stage, and looks sure to impress.
Thomas Lemar – France
Lemar nearly burst onto the scene in the summer of 2017 when he almost signed for Arsenal before the deal broke down. If no one signs him before the World Cup, expect to see a lot more clubs after him afterwards. Lemar can do it all, he is primarily a creative winger, but he also knows where the back of the net is, and don’t be surprised to see him scoring goals from out wide. He is a hugely impressive talent, who looks sure to bring plenty of excitement to Russia 2018.
Davinson Sanchez – Columbia
Davinson Sanches moves to Premier League club Tottenham during the summer and after time to settle in at the club, he is beginning to show why they spent over £42 million on him. He spent last season at Ajax and really came to the fore in their Europa League run which saw them lose in the final. After what looks like being an impressive season at Tottenham, many people will have heard of him heading into the world cup, but it is in Russia where he will come to life and really show people what he can do on the world stage.
Kylian Mbappe – France
Mbappe will still be a teenager when we reach Russia 2018, and he is going to go into the tournament with a huge amount of pressure on him. Already made famous due to the big money in place for him to sign permanently for PSG, the world has heard about Mbappe. However, this summer not only do we get to hear about him, we get to actually watch him play on the biggest stage of all. He has already made the jump from the French U19 squad straight to the seniors and there appears to be no looking back for Mbappe.
Marco Asensio – Spain
It has been a while since Real Madrid brought a player through their ranks that was good enough to stay and become a huge part of the club. Marco Asensio could be the player that changes that trend, and next summer in Russia we could see him emerge on the global stage. He has worked his way up to becoming an important part of the Madrid squad, as well as featuring for Spain and the world will see a lot more of him over the coming months.
Youri Tielemans – Belgium
Tielemans was the subject of a big money move this summer, going from Anderlecht to French team Monaco in a bid to further his career. He has started life very well with Monaco, already stamping his authority from midfield on many games and bagging a Champions League goal. With many flair players on their team, Tielemans may not be the first name you look at when going down the Belgian national side, but he is key to them and is going to have a great summer in Russia, contributing to both attack and defence.
Timo Werner – Germany
Germany have been on the lookout for a star striker and Wener coming along may be the answer to all their problems. He scored 21 goals in the Bundesliga last season for Leipzig and his performances so far this season both for his club and country are showing that was no fluke. He has scored goals in his own country, for his national team and has recently added Champions League goals to his name, showing he can compete at the highest level. He is the out and out striker that Germany have been looking for over the past few years and looks set to have a great tournament in Russia.