Erling Haaland or Kylian Mbappe - which youngster will have a bigger impact next season?
- Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe are two young superstars with the world at their feet!
- Which of these hotshots will be more impactful next season?
Haaland and Mbappe are touted as the future of football
One of the most exciting things in the footballing world is the discovery of an extremely talented player at a young age and such youngsters send the world into meltdown, with major clubs around the planet falling over themselves to secure his future.
From the mythical Pele and tragic Duncan Edwards in the 1950's, the talented and controversial Diego Maradona in the 1970's, to the phenomenal Ronaldo Nazario in the 1990's, history has been littered with several young men who blossomed into world-beaters at a tender age.
Each era brings with it its own fair share of talented youngsters who are placed on a pedestal much higher than their peers and while some fail to reach the lofty heights expected, most go on to achieve immortality.
The current era witnessed its own prodigy in the person of Kylian Mbappe, with the Frenchman going on to set records tumbling faster than you could say Jack Robinson and he was earmarked as the next heir to the Messi/Ronaldo throne.
In the last one year, another scoring sensation has emerged in the form of Erling Braut Haaland, with the Norwegian intentional bursting onto the with his displays at the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Poland last summer.
Since then, he has gone on to star in the Austrian and German Bundesliga, breaking a host of goal records in his wake, while he also set his mark on the continental stage of the Champions League.
Wherever Haaland and Mbappe have found themselves, one thing is guaranteed - goals, plenty of them and expectedly, comparisons have been made between the two men and attention has been turned to who would have more of an impact leading the line next season.
Here, we shall be looking at both players comparatively, analyzing their playing styles and skillset to judge on who is more likely to make a telling impact on the game next season.
The spectacular rise of Kylian MbappeReal Madrid v Paris Saint-Germain: Group A - UEFA Champions League
Monaco has long been famed as a talent hub for producing elite footballers, with players like Thierry Henry, Anthony Martial, and Emmanuel Petit having come out from La Turbie, hence, there was no special reason to take interest in a certain Kylian Mbappe.
However, within a year of becoming established in the Monaco first team, he played a starring role in the club's shock triumph in the Ligue 1 and was the shining jewel of the extremely youthful side that went all the way to the semifinal of the Champions League.
Two more domestic titles have followed at PSG and while the Champions League still eludes him, Mbappe has shone on the biggest stage of all, winning the World Cup in Russia and establishing himself as a bonafide world-class player.
The 21-year-old has not just been a passerby in these triumphs and a case can be made to consider him the most important player in each of these title wins, with illustrious names like those of Lionel Messi and Pele being usurped in his quest for greateness.
Despite his tender age, the French international already has 135 goals from just 225 matches and what's most exciting is that there is still a lot of potential to grow and become better.
The goalscoring machine that is Erling Haaland
The date was 30 May, 2019, the venue was Arena Lublin in Poland and the event was an-almost dead rubber group stage fixture between Norway and Honduras in the final match of Group C in the Under-20 FIFA Word Cup.
Neither of the two sides are exactly heavyweights on the international scene and interest was understandably low, with just 5,646 in attendance that evening. At the end of the match, more would have wished they attended in person to witness history unfold before their eyes.
When a certain Erling Haaland took just seven minutes to open the scoring, few would have given it a second thought and only old-timers of the game who remembered a certain Leeds United legend by the name of Alf-Inge Haaland might have made the connection.
At the end of 90 minutes, the burly striker had scored nine goals, putting his name into the record books as the first man to score nine goals in a FIFA tournament and he ended the competition as the highest goalscorer despite exiting at the group stage.
Then representing Molde, a transfer to Red Bull Salzburg was completed and with the Austrian giants, he continued his fine form, scoring 29 goals from 27 matches in all competitions (including hat-tricks on five different occasions) and this form prompted a battle for his signature among Europe's biggest sides.
He ultimately settled for Borussia Dortmund and did not lose his stride for an instant, scoring seven goals in his first three matches, including a hat-trick on his debut off the bench to send his statement of intent to the rest of the world.
Who will have a bigger impact next season?
In terms of natural instinct in front of goal and physique, Erling Haaland runs circles around Mbappe, with his monstrous build and physical stature making him a nightmare for opposition defenders.
In many ways, the former Salzburg man is the definition of a complete striker and while his extra height might have been a disadvantage to many, it aids his cause in front of goal and in the air. He is also surprisingly fast, adept in shooting from distance and is a natural finisher with both feet.
However, Mbappe is no mean slouch either and his technique is second to none, while his breakout at such a tender age is almost unparalleled in the history of the game.
The French international was thrust into the limelight at just 18 years and more weight was placed upon his shoulders when he became the second costliest player in history but rather than weigh him down, Mbappe faced the challenge square on and became an even deadlier player.
The Paris native has conquered all stages and proved his mettle for the last three years, this is one advantage he has over Haaland and while not taking anything from the Dortmund man, it is unknown if he would maintain these goalscoring feats over the next few years and it is pertinent to state that he has not done much of note on the international stage.
As it stands, Mbappe is the more tested and trusted of the pair and he is almost at adept at creating goals as he is at scoring them and while Erling Haaland could well be on his way to becoming an elite player, Kylian Mbappe is already established as one and the smart money would be on him outshining the Norwegian starlet in the coming season.Published 16 Mar 2020, 20:03 IST