England’s star teen, Barcelona’s new Andres Iniesta, Man United target Jules Kounde and Jeremy Doku – the young players to look out for at Euro 2020

The European Championship is finally upon us.

The competition had to be rescheduled due to the pandemic and now, a yer later than planned, UEFA will be able to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the competition.

Gareth Southgate boasts an abundance of young talent and will be hoping England can have a successful Euros
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England fans will be hoping Gareth Southgate can bring football home, or at least avoid a similar fate as the 2016 Euros, when the Three Lions were dumped out at the round of 16 by minnows Iceland.

The competition’s postponement has been a double edged sword, with football fans understandably eager for football, we’ve had another year for young talent across the globe to develop. 

With the Euro squad sizes being extended to 26 instead of the usual 23, there’s even more teams that will take a punt on their young talent.

But who are the top prospects heading into the tournament that could make a big impact?

Here are six youngsters to keep your eyes on…

Jude Bellingham (England)

At the age of just 17, Jude Bellingham is mature way beyond his years. 

Labelled the next Steven Gerrard, the midfielder has set the Bundesliga alight since signing for Borussia Dortmund last summer.

Bellingham is still only 17, but has impressed in Dortmund’s first team where he scored in a Champions League quarter-final

Known for his versatility, composure and hard working attitude, there are bright things in this guy’s future. 

He rose to the occasion when in the spotlight with some tantalizing performances in the Champions League quarter-finals against Manchester City, bagging himself a goal and being one of the best players on the pitch. 

With three caps to his name already, the midfielder could force his way into the starting eleven, with many believing he deserves a spot in the team despite his age.

England have been blessed with a star-studded midfield, but Southgate has already said Bellingham is not just going to Euro 2020 for the experience.

Jamal Musiala (Germany)

Jamal Musiala is enjoying life in Germany…

After spending most of his childhood at the Chelsea academy, he left for Bayern Munich and has featured 25 times in the league this season. 

Musiala has broken into Bayern’s first team this season

The Bayern prodigy played a key role in the Bundesliga campaign this season, helping the club create history with their 10th consecutive title win. 

With six league goals to his name, and a brilliant Champions League strike against Lazio, Jamal isn’t just one for the future, he can make a serious impact in this European Championship.

Musiala made the decision to snub England to lace up for Germany, will that turn out to be right call?

Germany have been disappointing in international competitions since their 2014 World Cup win. Maybe an injection of youth is exactly what is needed.

Pedri (Spain)

Ronald Koeman is known to favour younger players and has given Pedri every chance to shine this season. 

The Spaniard joined Barcelona from Las Palmas last year and hasn’t looked back, playing in all but one league game in the 2020/21 season. 

The youngster has been called upon in big games
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Earning a starting spot in the midfield of a team that includes Lionel Messi, Miralem Pjanic and Sergio Busquets is an accomplishment within itself and the youngster isn’t taking the opportunity for granted.

Although the Catalonian giants have had a disappointing season, there is a sense of optimism around the club. 

Pedri’s passing and technical ability mirror that of Barca legend Andres Inesta and at 18 years old some think he has the potential to reach the very top.

Ryan Gravenberch (Netherlands)

Ajax have a reputation for developing young players and Ryan Gravenberch is another prospect developed at their famous academy. 

Gravenberch is already a target of Manchester United at just 19 years old, and a big-money move could be on the cards soon to further his career.

Gravenberch is seen as one of the Netherland’s top rising talents

After making his international debut in March this year, he hasn’t looked back and will be keen to prove his worth to Netherlands coach Frank de Boer. 

The wonderkid has a wealth of experience to his name already and is regarded as a generational talent in Holland. 

Expectations for the Dutch aren’t high for the Euros, and their squad isn’t as strong as their past teams meaning Gravenberch could get a lot of minutes. 

He could be one to watch for goal of the tournament as he’s well known to be keen on a long shot.

Jeremy Doku (Belgium)

While Jeremy Doku is unlikely to start for his country, he will be a strong option from the bench if Belgium need a goal.

The 19-year-old Rennes forward, who is able to play on either wing, has scored two goals in six appearances for his country.

Doku was being chased by Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal before deciding to join Rennes from Anderlecht last summer.

A good Euro 2020 could put the youngster back in the shop window for several Premier League clubs.

Doku will be looking to shine bright at Euro 2020

Jules Kounde (France)

Manchester United, Barcelona and Real Madrid are reportedly battling to sign Jules Kounde this summer.

While France’s first-choice central defensive pairing is Raphael Varane and Presnel Kimpembe, Kounde is a more than ready replacement should one of those players get injured.

The 22-year-old helped Sevilla to a top-four finish in the 2020/21 season and looks set to move on in the forthcoming months.

Kounde made his France debut as a second-half substitute in Wednesday’s 3-0 win over Wales

talkSPORT and talkSPORT 2 will have live commentary of EVERY game of Euro 2020. You won’t miss a thing as we bring you round the clock coverage, reaction and analysis from June 11-July 11. Listen online HERE.