With another year drawing to a close, Forza Italian Football has reviewed the year that was in calcio, this time focusing in on the best youngsters in Serie A.
Although Italian football coaches are renowned to prefer using established players and veterans, there have been a few starlets emerging in recent years and 2018 was no different.
A few of these youngsters have been playing in Italy’s highest division for a couple of seasons already but they have proven that their debut campaigns were not cases of beginner’s luck and that they are capable of rising to greater heights.
Here are Forza Italian Football’s best Serie A youngsters for 2018.
Cengiz Under – Roma
Acquired from Basaksehir in his native Turkey in 2017 for €13.4m, this right-winger has become an instant hit for Roma under Coach Eusebio Di Francesco.
In his debut campaign, he played 32 competitive games, scoring eight goals and providing two assists with seven of those strikes coming in Serie A. This season he has played 23 games, scoring three times and providing eight assists.
This 21-year-old is often content to cut-in on his left foot and he has an incredible ability to score goals from long-range or on the volley.
Nicolo Barella – Cagliari
One of the most complete midfielders emerging in Italian football, Barella offers both quantity and quality.
The 21-year-old is best suited to creating the play for his native Cagliari thanks to neat technical ability on the ball and graceful movements but he is capable of dropping back to help his defence and make tenacious tackles.
Barella scored six goals in 34 Serie A matches in 2017/18 but also collected 13 yellow cards and a red one. He has become a transfer target for the likes of Inter and AC Milan and he is starting to establish himself as a starter for Italy.