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5 best U25 forwards in the world

Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland greet each other before a game
Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland greet each other before a game
Abhinav Anand
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Goals win games, but judging attackers only by their goal and assist tallies can be misleading. Young players, especially those breaking through or developing at a particular club, need time and the right coaching to get the best out of them.

Recent seasons have seen clubs invest in young talent, with Atletico Madrid breaking their club-record to sign Joao Felix and Paris Saint-Germain making Kylian Mbappe the most expensive teenager in world football.

With Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo now in their 30s, they will not go on forever. The young stars look set to take their place soon.

5 best U25 forwards in the world


#5 Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund)

Jadon Sancho has been a fine player for Borussia Dortmund
Jadon Sancho has been a fine player for Borussia Dortmund

Jadon Sancho paved the way for English youngsters to try their luck abroad by bravely joining Borussia Dortmund in 2017.

After a lack of playing time at Manchester City, Sancho joined Borussia Dortmund for a fee of £7 million. Eyebrows were raised after the move, but the 21-year old has thrived for the Bundesliga giants and looks set to earn them a hefty profit. A creative, technical winger, Sancho's performances for Borussia Dortmund have established him as one of the best young players in the world.

The England international has 131 appearances in all competitions for Borussia Dortmund, scoring 46 goals and providing 60 assists. He was heavily linked with a move to Manchester United last season and the Old Trafford outfit are said to be interested once more.


#4 Joao Felix (Atletico Madrid)

Joao Felix in Portugal colours
Joao Felix in Portugal colours

There is no doubting Joao Felix's talent. The forward impressed with his debut season at Benfica, and earned a whopping £114.5 million move to Atletico Madrid in 2019.

The transfer fee earned heavy scrutiny, and Felix endured a quiet first season with Diego Simeone's men. The 21-year old has done well in his second season though, but there are still reservations as to whether he truly fits into the Simeone system. A pacy forward with good creativity as well as goalscoring ability, Felix has the tools to become one of the best in the world.

The Portugal international has made 70 appearances in all competitions for Atletico Madrid, scoring 19 goals and providing eight assists. Felix still has a lot of room to develop, and was linked with a move to Manchester City recently.


Also Read: 5 most underrated Chelsea players of the 21st century


#3 Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)

Marcus Rashford before a Manchester United game
Marcus Rashford before a Manchester United game

While Marcus Rashford has been one of Manchester United's best players, he has also been a true trailblazer off the field.

A product of the Manchester United academy, Rashford made his debut for Louis van Gaal's side against Midtjylland in the Europa League, scoring two goals. He has not looked back since then; the England international has become a star for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men, and has been an everpresent in the starting XI.

The 23-year old has made 277 appearances in all competitions for Manchester United, scoring 92 goals and providing 53 assists. He has predominantly operated on the left wing, forming an effective partnership with left-back Luke Shaw.


#2 Erling Braut Haaland (Borussia Dortmund)

Erling Haaland could leave Borussia Dortmund soon
Erling Haaland could leave Borussia Dortmund soon

One of Jadon Sancho and Erling Braut Haaland look set to leave Borussia Dortmund this summer, a testament to the club's talent-identification that they have two of the best young players in the world.

Haaland has been sensational for quite some time now. He was the star for Red Bull Salzburg during his time there, and his performances for the club saw him persistently linked with Manchester United. Borussia Dortmund signed him, though, for a fee of £18 million, and the Norway international has been a bargain.

The 20-year old has already achieved superstar status with his superlative performances for Borussia Dortmund. He has made 55 appearances in all competitions for them, scoring 51 goals and providing 14 assists. Real Madrid, Barcelona, the Manchester clubs and Chelsea are all interested, although he will cost an arm and a leg if he is to be sold by Borussia Dortmund this summer.


#1 Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain)

Kylian Mbappe in action for Paris Saint-Germain
Kylian Mbappe in action for Paris Saint-Germain

Kylian Mbappe, one of the best players in world football, has already won almost everything at the age of 22.

The France international enjoyed a phenomenal season with AS Monaco, earning him a loan move to Paris Saint-Germain in 2017. This move was made permanent for an eye-watering fee of £130.5 million in 2018, and what a signing he has been for the Parisien giants. An excellent dribbler, fast and clinical, Mbappe has proved to be worth the transfer fee.

He has made 165 appearances in all competitions for the Ligue 1 giants, scoring 125 goals and providing 60 assists. Real Madrid are said to be interested in signing him, but it remains to be seen whether they would be able to afford him.


Also Read: Ranking the richest owners in the Premier League (2021)

Edited by Prem Deshpande

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