Premier League: Best Young XI of the Season
The PFA Young Player of the Year is the annual award presented to the best English Premier League player aged 23 or under at the start of the season. This is the individual trophy that every young player in the Premier League wants to get his hands on.
Raheem Sterling, who is a strong contender for the PFA Player of the Year award is likely to clinch the Young Player of the Year award too after a stellar season. His teammate Bernardo Silva is likely to be his strongest competitor for the award. Their teammate, Leroy Sane, clinched the title last season but has surprisingly been omitted from the six-man shortlist this time around.
The shortlist includes Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold, Manchester United's Marcus Rashford, West Ham's Declan Rice and Bournemouth's David Brooks. These young players have played a massive role in their team's success by bringing in youthful exuberance and energy to the side.
Their performances would just be a bright start to what could be an exciting road ahead for these future superstars of the game. In this article, we take a look at the Best Young XI of the Premier League 2018-19. We have considered players who were 23 or less at the start of the Premier League season in August last year.
Kepa Arrizabalaga (Chelsea)
With Real Madrid completing the signing of Thibaut Courtois at the start of the season, Chelsea knew they had huge boots to fill to replace the Belgian shot-stopper. Chelsea surprisingly though spent a massive sum to sign a relatively unknown Kepa Arrizabalaga from Athletic Bilbao for €80 million, making him the most expensive goalkeeper in the progress.
Though Kepa has been exposed at the back a few times, he has shown promise. Though he has a long way to go to fill Courtois' shoes and also justify the transfer fee, he still has age on his side to develop and become a top keeper for Chelsea. The Spaniard has kept 13 clean sheets this season, which has only been exceeded by the two title contender teams, Manchester City and Liverpool.
With a better defense in front of him and with more time to develop and understanding with the back-line, Kepa has the skills to grow into one of the best keepers in the world.