Premier League trio Marcus Rashford, Dele Alli and Alex Iwobi have all been named on the 40-man shortlist for UEFA’s Golden Boy award. Iwobi and the other two listed join Kelechi Iheanacho and a host of other youngsters already running for the awrd.
UEFA’s prize is awarded with regards to the performances of players under the age of 21 in a calendar year, with the winner decided by a panel of 30 journalists.
Last year’s winner was Manchester United forward Anthony Martial, while Paul Pogba, Raheem Sterling, Wayne Rooney and Cesc Fabregas are all previous winners.
Rashford, 18, has been rewarded for his fine breakthrough year at Old Trafford and with England, notching eight goals in 15 appearances for United as well as his first senior international strike against Australia.
Tottenham’s Alli, 20, played an instrumental role in Spurs’ title challenge last season, transitioning from League One football with MK Dons to the Premier League with consummate ease.
Arsenal’s Iwobi, 20, has come to the fore slower than his Premier League counterparts, but burst onto the scene during the 2015/16 season and has also played a part in the Gunners’ recent unbeaten run.
The favourites for the 2016 edition of the award are Bayern Munich pair Kingsley Coman and Renato Sanches, though in addition to Rashford, Alli and Iwobi there are a further eight current representatives from British clubs.
Manchester City’s Iheanacho and Leroy Sane, Celtic’s Moussa Dembele, Liverpool’s Marko Grujic, Leicester City’s Demarai Gray, and Chelsea trio Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Nathan and Andreas Christensen are all rewarded for their form and performances by UEFA.