18-year-old Garang Kuol of Australia is one of young players to watch out for at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
The FIFA World Cup is the biggest sporting event in the world. Each edition of the tournament sees a young player elevated to superstardom.
From Pele to Michael Owen, Lukas Poldoski, James Rodriguez, Mesut Ozil, Thomas Mueller, Paul Pogba, Kylian Mbappe and many more.
The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar also promises to unearth new youngsters that will become the darlings of football lovers.
In this article, FootballOrbit presents you with 22 young players to watch out for in Qatar 2022.
1. Jude Bellingham (England)
Still just 19 years old, Jude Bellingham has exhibited maturity beyond his years since breaking through at Birmingham City.
He moved to Borussia Dortmund in the German Bundesliga and has established himself there as one of the best young footballers in the world.
Furthermore, Bellingham is gradually making himself indispensable for England.
This season, his maturity and natural leadership qualities have seen him captain Dortmund.
Jude Bellingham is surely a player to watch out for in the England squad.
2. Jamal Musiala (Germany)
Jamal Musiala has been around so long that’s its easy to forget that he is still only 19.
The former Chelsea youngster has nailed down his spot in the Bayern Munich first team and is now likely to be a key figure for Germany at the 2022 World Cup.
Musiala has been on fire for Bayern Munich this season, and has directly been involved in 22 goals in 22 appearances.
3. Bukayo Saka (England)
Like Musiala, Bukayo Saka has also been around for a while. He is the first player born in the 21st century to play in a Premier League match.
The 21-year-old is considered as one of the best young football players in the world. Saka is known for his attacking incisiveness, creativity and goal scoring ability.
4. Gavi (Spain)
At just 18 years old, Gavi is the youngest ever player to be called up for the World Cup by Spain — beating a record held by Cesc Fabregas.
He won the 2022 Kopa Trophy and Golden Boy Award for his sterling displays since breaking through at Barcelona.
Gavi starred for Spain at the UEFA Nations League in 2021.
5. Pedri (Spain)
Like Gavi, Pedri is another young player that has been turning heads for Barcelona and Spain.
He joined Barca from Las Palmas in 2019 and has been impressive since.
Pedri is a versatile player who can play in midfield or on the wings.
The 19-year-old is a quick, intelligent, creative and hard-working player who is known for his excellent technical skills, ball control, passing, awareness and vision.
His ability to manage himself in tight spaces, exploit gaps and play the final ball or penetrating passes makes him a very dangerous playmaker.
6. Xavi Simons (Netherlands)
Xavi Simons has been on everyone’s lips since his childhood days at Barcelona’s La Masia Academy. In fact, the exposure he got almost derailed his career.
He moved to PSG to continue his development but found it very difficult to break into the first team.
This forced him to secure a loan move to PSV this summer and he is finally realising the huge potential he demonstrated as a youngster.
Now 19 years old, Xavi Simons has already scored 10 goals and provided 4 assists so far this season.
7. Takefusa Kubo (Japan)
Takefusa Kubo was hailed as the ”Japanese Messi” when he was coming through Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy as a teen prodigy.
He eventually got the Blaugranas into trouble as they were banned for illegal transfer dealings involving Kubo.
Subsequently, he went back to his native Japan and rejuvenated his career. This earned him another big move to Real Madrid in 2019, but he failed to force his way into the team.
After loan spells at Mallorca (twice), Villareal and Getafe, the 21-year-old finally secured a permanent move to Real Sociedad in 2022 and has been impressive this season.
Takefusa Kubo can play the role of a “joker” for Japan at Qatar 2022 World Cup.
8. Josko Gvardiol (Croatia)
Croatian centre-back, Josko Gvardiol, joined RB Leipzig from Dinamo Zagreb in 2020 and has established himself in Germany since.
His impressive displays have started drawing interest from prominent European clubs.
Furthermore, the 20-year-old can also play as a left-back or as a central midfielder.
9. Youssoufa Moukoko (Germany)
Youssoufa Moukoko has been grabbing the headlines since he was coming through Borussia Dortmund’s youth teams.
He broke into the senior team last season and is finally replicating the performances he displayed at youth level.
This season, the 17-year-old has begun to consistently show that he can be as productive in the senior game.
Moukoko has scored 6 goals and provided 6 assists in all competitions in 2022/23.
Did you know? Youssoufa Moukoko will be the youngest player at the 2022 FIFA World Cup as he will only turn 18 on the first day of the tournament.
10. Nuno Mendes (Portugal)
Nuno Mendes is an attacking full-back or wing-back who possesses attacking capabilities, speed and technical qualities.
The 20-year-old came through Sporting Lisbon’s youth academy and made his first-team debut in 2020.
The following year, he won a double of the Primeira Liga and Taça da Liga. He was named in the Primeira Liga Team of the Year.
In August 2021, he moved to PSG on a one-year loan deal and won the Ligue 1 title. His performances convinced PSG to sign him permanently for €38 million.
Nuno Mendes loves overlapping due to his dribbling and excellent crossing ability whether tightly marked or in open space.
Furthermore, his physical qualities allows him to beat opponents to the ball with his speed and strength.
11. Aurelien Tchouameni (France)
Real Madrid splashed €100m to sign 22-year-old Aurélien Tchouaméni from Monaco this summer.
The young midfielder had established himself in Ligue 1 and for France, which convinced Madrid to go all-out for him.
Tchouaméni is seen as a future superstar but can announce himself to the world in Qatar 2022.
12. Abdul Fatawu Issahaku (Ghana)
Abdul Fatawu Issahaku started his career with Steadfast FC in the Ghanaian 2nd division when he was just 15 years old!
At 16, he was selected to take part in the 2021 U-20 AFCON.
During the competition, Issahaku played all matches for Ghana — scoring 2 goals to help his country win the title.
He was named as the Best Player of the Tournament.
In April 2022, he joined Portuguese side, Sporting Lisbon, on a 5-year contract — with a release clause of €60m.
The 18-year-old has played some few games for Sporting this season which earned him a place in the Ghanaian squad heading to Qatar.
Abdul Fatawu Issahaku is a young player to watch out for at the tournament due to his strength, skills, pace and powerful shots.
13. Giovanni Reyna (USA)
Aged 17 years and 66 days, Giovanni Reyna became the youngest American ever to appear in the Bundesliga — breaking a record previously set by Christian Pulisic.
He has since become an important player not just Dortmund, but also for USA.
20-year-old Reyna — whose parents are both ex-footballers — will be instrumental for the USA at the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup.
14. Garang Kuol (Australia)
Garang Kuol is yet to start a senior professional match, but the 18-year-old has already scored 6 goals and assisted 3 more in his 13 SUBSTITUTE appearances for Central Coast Mariners in the A-League!!!
This earned him a call-up to the Australian national team — making him the youngest player to be called-up to the Australian senior team since Harry Kewell in 1996
Moreso, Kuol was named in Australia’s squad for the Qatar 2022 World Cup at 18 years old — the youngest player ever selected by the country for a FIFA World Cup.
Garang Kuol has already secured a January transfer to English Premier League side, Newcastle United.
15. Ryan Gravenberch (Netherlands)
Ryan Gravenberch made his senior team debut for Ajax in September 2018 to become the youngest ever player to play for the club in the Eredivisie — at 16 years and 130 days.
Subsequently, he established himself in the first team and won 3 Eredivisie league titles.
His performances convinced Bayern Munich to sign him last summer. The 20-year-old is gradually making an impact for the Bundesliga giants.
Ryan Gravenberch can be very important for the Netherlands at the 2022 World Cup.
16. Hannibal Mejbri (Tunisia)
Hannibal Mejbri is an highly-rated midfielder at Manchester United since joining the club from Monaco in 2019.
But he has struggled to break into the first-team at Old Trafford, despite some strong showings at international level for Tunisia.
The 19-year-old is currently impressing on loan at Birmingham City in the Championship, and should see plenty of action in Qatar.
17. Pape Matar Sarr (Senegal)
Pape Matar Sarr came into limelight after an impressive 2020/21 season for Ligue 1 side, Metz. This earned him a move to Tottenham.
He was loaned back to Metz to help him continue his development and impressed once more — despite his side suffering relegation.
He is now back at Spurs fighting to get into Antonio Conte’s team. Sarr hasn’t had much game-time but could “blow” at the World Cup with Senegal.
The 19-year-old helped Senegal win the AFCON for the first time ever earlier this year.
18. Zeno Debast (Belgium)
19-year-old Zeno Debast plays for Belgian giants, Anderlecht.
The centre-back is highly rated in his homeland and has been compared to Manchester City legend, Vincent Kompany.
Ironically, it was Kompany that handed Debast his professional debut when he was managing Anderlecht.
19. Eduardo Camavinga (France)
Like most of the young players on this list, it is easy to forget that Eduardo Camavinga is still very young; he is just 20!
This is because he started playing professionally from a very very young age.
Aged 16 years and 6 months, he became the youngest ever player to play for Rennes
Camavinga joined Real Madrid in August 2021 and won the UEFA Champions League in his first season in Madrid.
Also, in September 2021; he became the youngest player to play for the French national team since Maurice Gastiger in 1914.
Eduardo Camavinga plays with a kind of maturity that belies his age.
20. Ansu Fati (Spain)
20-year-old Ansu Fati is widely considered as one of Spain’s most exciting football talents and one of the best young players in the world.
Aged 16 years and 298 days, he became the 2nd-youngest player to play for Barcelona.
Furthermore, at the age of 16 years and 304 days; Fati became Barca’s youngest ever goalscorer — as well as the 3rd-youngest scorer in La Liga history.
With Spain struggling to find a striker that will deliver consistently, Ansu Fati could be the solution in Qatar.
21. Enzo Fernandez (Argentina)
21-year-old Enzo Fernandez is an Argentine central midfielder who plays for Benfica.
He graduated from River Plate academy and made his first-team debut for the club in 2019. He later spent two seasons on loan at Defensa y Justicia .
There, he enjoyed a successful campaign which saw him win the Copa Sudamericana and Recopa Sudamericana.
Fernandez returned to River Plate in 2021 and established himself as an integral player — winning the Argentine Primera División.
In July 2022, he joined Portuguese giants, Benfica.
Enzo Fernandez is a central midfielder who likes playing as a deep-seated playmaker responsible for breaking up play, dictating the tempo and recycling possession.
22. Antonio Silva (Portugal)
Centre-back, Antonio Silva, came through Benfica’s youth system and made his professional debut this season.
The 19-year-old is an hard-tackling and versatile defender who is physically strong.
Antonio Silva is very comfortable at passing the ball with both feet.