UCL 2016-17: Top five young players to watch

Sport360 staff 10:06 12/09/2016
Potential stars: Hendrix, Dembele, Lidelof and Coric.

The 2016-17 UEFA Champions League group stage gets underway on Tuesday evening with another group of players determined to make their name at the top level of club football.

From Wayne Rooney against Fenerbahce in 2004 and Lionel Messi’s opening salvos the following season, right through to Joshua Kimmich’s impressive cameos last year, it is a stage upon which global stars are born.

Who, then, are the potential young stars of this year’s competition?

Jorrit Hendrix (PSV)

A rock at the heart of the PSV midfield, the 21-year-old won his first Dutch cap this month and is the sort of positionally-sound and hard-working anchorman teams crave in the modern game.

Ousmane Dembele (Borussia Dortmund)

A dribbling and creative whizzkid who can sometimes frustrate as much as he can thrill but there’s no doubting the 19-year-old is a serious talent.

Victor Lindelof (Benfica)

Capable of playing as centre-back or on the right-side of the defence, the Swede is one of the hottest properties in European football with Chelsea, Napoli and Inter all chasing his signature.

Maxwel Cornet (Lyon)

The Lyon production line keeps churning them out and Cornet is the latest attacking talent to emerge. Has improved his finishing and is a devastatingly direct wide forward.

Ante Coric (Dinamo Zagreb)

The attacking midfielder turned down Barcelona and Bayern in his early teens. All the signs indicate they’ll both be back in for him before too long.

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