Three Manchester City players have been ranked amongst the 50 most exciting teenagers in world football as James McAtee, Cole Palmer and Liam Delap are all listed.
The Blues are thriving once again this season with their typically eye-catching style, most recently putting five past Sporting in a supposedly tough-looking Champions League tie.
And there is further reason for exciting further down the chain of command as, in recent seasons, City youngsters have frequently enjoyed the taste of success, winning the FA Youth Cup and Premier League 2.
Phil Foden, who misses out on the list due to his age, has been a standout story of success for the youth system and a player the likes of McAtee, Palmer and Delap will be looking up to.
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The list, compiled by FourFourTwo, features a plethora of uncut gems including Jude Bellingham, Ryan Gravenberch and Florian Wirtz, to name a few.
McAtee makes the top 40 coming in at 37. Dubbed ‘The Salford Silva’, the City youngster saw his hard work rewarded with a contract extension earlier this month.
He has been in and around the first-team squad, as well as being a regular for the 23s where he has produced a number of highlights.
What FourFourTwo say: “The kid dubbed “the Salford Silva” – we assume after David, though it could Bernardo – has recently ended speculation over his future with a three-year deal and is already making the bench for Pep Guardiola’s side.
“McAtee not only displays the care in possession that Guardiola demands, he has vision and intelligence that makes him a future shoo-in for City’s side. With the Etihad youngsters getting more of a chance these days, it seems likely that McAtee will be given plenty of opportunities in the next year or two.”
Coming in three places lower is Cole Palmer. The 19-year-old has enjoyed his breakthrough season in the first-team where he has broken his Champions League and FA Cup ducks with impressive goals against Club Brugge and Swindon Town.
His wand of a left-foot combined with his trickery makes it a nightmare for defenders to stop the youngster. He has found himself firmly set in the first team. Although currently sidelined through injury, as he claimed his first Premier League goal he will “soon come”.
WhatFourFourTwo say: “Already starting the odd game under Guardiola, Cole Palmer is cut from a similar cloth to Phil Foden. Direct, intelligent and with a wand of a left peg, Palmer is leggier and strides about with quiet authority rather than buzzing about like the Stockport Iniesta .
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“That means that he’ll most likely end up in midfield rather than further up the pitch. Palmer has so far played on the right but his pass selection and dribbling ability makes him perfect for continuing the Bernardo Silva legacy in the centre.”
The only City man to break into the top 20 is Liam Delap who comes in at a respectable 18th. He has been in and around the first team for a number of season’s but saw his development of him this season hampered by injury.
He has since recovered and thrust back into action with a trip to Sporting as part of the 23-man squad as well as an FA Cup outing against Fulham. With a midweek clash against Peterborough coming up, the Blues could well shuffle the pack and see Delap lead the line.
What FourFourTwo say: “Yes, he’s Rory Delap’s son. Yes, he’s got more to his game than just a long throw.
“Another player it’s hard to believe is a teenager simply from his build, Delap has the Haalands about him: he looks like a Premier League star basically trained him from birth to become the next Alan Shearer or whoever.
“He’s powerful, lethal in the penalty area and his all-round game is astounding for his age. You know, he might be the next traditional City centre-forward…”
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