Some football players do need time or experience to make an impact. Some have such a natural talent and gift for the game that they can change tournaments and teams long before their twentieth birthday. Many teenagers burst onto the scene and make a huge impact and go on to have hugely successful careers. This article looks at some of the more memorable teenagers to make an impact playing football.
One of the most notable young players and certainly one that’s made the biggest impact on football is Pele. Pele became internationally known due to his performances at the 1958 World Cup. He became the youngest scorer in the tournament’s history with his goal against Wales and then the scored an incredible hat-trick against France in the semi final. He went on to score two goals in the final against Sweden and claimed his first World Cup winners medal, he would go on to win the tournament twice more with Brazil. Pele was a sensation right from the start and has become known as the greatest footballer that ever lived. His talent was evident from the start and he is a shining example of a young player living out his potential.
Michael Owen burst onto the international scene at the 1998 World Cup with a blistering solo goal against Argentina at just 18 years of age. Owen combined pace with an unerring eye for goal and a natural finishers instinct. Playing for Liverpool during his early years he was their top scorer in every season he was at Anfield, winning the League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup. Owen’s two goals to overturn Arsenal in the 2001 FA Cup final have gone down in club folklore and are still talked about on the terraces today. Unfortunately Owen has had much of his early promise cut short due to a succession of serious injuries. He has lost his electric pace of his teenage years but now carries more experience and he still has the knack of scoring important goals.
Another young Englishman to make a big impact as a teenager in recent memory is Wayne Rooney. Rooney made his debut for his boyhood club, Everton, at 16 years of age, scoring the winning goal in a victory over Arsenal. He would eventually transfer to Manchester United as the most expensive teenager in history. He has gone on to win many honours with the club, including the Champions League. Rooney has also been one of England’s most important players over the past six years, scoring many crucial goals. Despite suffering a number of injuries, including a broken foot, Rooney has managed to maintain the qualities that made him such a talent in the first place. An explosive footballer, it is interesting to think what he will be capable of in the future.
There are many young players bursting onto the scene every year, Lionel Messi was alright and Theo Walcott is pretty good, but it takes something special for them to carry on their initial momentum. Not every player will turn out as well as Francis Jeffers. One of the most exciting things about watching football is seeing new talents emerge, and we never know what players are just around the corner.
Source by Patrick Omari