With the turn of the year, Asian football lovers will witness the greatest battle of their continent: the Asian Cup. It is a quadrennial event, which is about to start from January 5, 2019, with hosts United Arab Emirates facing Bahrain in the opening match.
India, after eight years, has qualified for the prestigious tournament. So, this winter will be busy for the Indian football as Sunil Chhetri and co. will try to etch new history in the record books.
Like every year, this year too, some promising youngsters are waiting in the ranks to grab the world’s attention. After all, an impressive display will earn a lucrative deal with a reputed club.
In this article, we take a look at exciting talents on whom we should keep an eye.
#10 Nguyen Quang Hai (Vietnam)
2018 will certainly be a year Nguyen Quand Hai will remember for his life. In January, he helped his country reach the final of the AFC U-23 championship. Thereafter, Vietnam entered the final of the Asian Games before losing out to South Korea. They finally won the AFF Suzuki Cup a few days ago.
Hai played a major role for his country in all these tournaments. The left-footed playmaker is gifted with an abundance of skill, vision and a taste for the big occasion. In the Suzuki Cup, he scored three goals, one of which from a stunning left-footed free-kick against Laos.
He is superb from dead ball situations, both in terms of crossing and striking from distance. Due to his performance, Hai was awarded the most valuable player of the tournament for the third successive edition.
He has also been nominated for Best Asian Footballer award.
#9 Abdulrahman Ghareeb (Saudi Arabia)
The young Saudi Arabian player caught the eye of everyone with his impressive performances for Al Ahli. After helping the club to dominate, Ghareeb earned his first national team call-up and the youngster made his debut against Brazil in October.
The young midfielder played his first full match for his country against Yemen in November. He scored in that match, which all but ensured his place in the squad for the Asian Cup.