Charles De Ketelaere among the last twenty contenders for the Golden Boy Award

© BELGA

Charles De Ketelaere (Club Brugge) is on the shortlist with twenty nominees for the Golden Boy Award of 2021. That is the trophy for the best footballer under 21 on the European fields, organized by Tuttosport.

Vincent Van Genechten

The Italian sports newspaper reduced the list of contenders from 40 to 20 players after an online poll on the Italian newspaper’s website. Then the winner is announced by a panel of journalists, with Pedri being the big favourite. Jérémy Doku (Rennes) did not make the last cut.

De Ketelaere is up against the following names:

Karim Adeyemi (Salzburg)

Jude Bellingham (Dortmund)

Eduardo Camavinga (Real Madrid)

Gavi (Barcelona)

Bryan Gil (Tottenham)

Ryan Gravenberch (Ajax)

Mason Greenwood (Man United)

Jamal Musiala (Bayern)

Pedri (Barcelona)

Daniel Maldini (Milan)

Nuno Mendes (PSG)

Roberto Piccoli (Atalanta)

Yeremi Pino (Villarreal)

Gio Reyna (Dortmund)

Rodrygo (Real Madrid)

Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

William Saliba (Marseille)

Jurrien Timber (Ajax)

Florian Wirtz (Leverkusen)

©  AFP

It has been since 2017 for our country that it once again had a representative among the greatest forty talents in football. Then it was Youri Tielemans, who made it to the last forty names three years in a row. The fact that more than one Belgian player was nominated is already since 2015. When Belgium counted no fewer than five players in the best forty with Adnan Januzaj, Zakaria Bakkali, Jason Denayer, Divock Origi and Tielemans. Eden Hazard (third in 2011), Thibaut Courtois (third in 2012), Romelu Lukaku (second in 2013) and Divock Origi (second in 2014) have made the podium in the past.

The Golden Boy Award has been presented since 2003. An international jury of football journalists selects the ultimate winner. Notable names on the honors list include Rafael Van der Vaart (2003), Wayne Rooney (2004), Lionel Messi (2005), Cesc Fabregas (2006), Sergio Aguëro (2007), Mario Balotelli (2010), Paul Pogba (2013 ), Raheem Sterling (2014) and Kylian Mbappe (2017). Last year the prize went to the Norwegian Erling Haaland.

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