4 Young Footballers Poised to Be Breakout Stars in 2014

Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentDecember 17, 2013

BARCELONA, SPAIN - OCTOBER 29:  Sergi Darder of Malaga CF competes for the ball with Victor Sanchez of RCD Espanyol during the La Liga match between RCD Espanyol and Malaga CF at Cornella-El Prat Stadium on October 29, 2013 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images

Who are your four teenage footballers poised to be breakout stars in 2014?

This article will choose four alternative names rather than prodigies in the spotlight like Manchester United's Adnan Januzaj or Stuttgart's Timo Werner.

The idea is to inform you of an up-and-coming talent so you can start following his career.

Feel free to comment below with your own suggestions.


Keita Balde Diao, Lazio LF, Age: 18

Source: Make A Gif/CalcioTubeTV

In the 4-2 loss to Napoli, he was subbed on for Senad Lulic and completed more dribbles (three) in a 24-minute cameo appearance than Lulic had in 70 minutes (two).

Keita shredded Napoli with a goal that demonstrated blazing speed, tight ball control, elusiveness and powerful finishing ability.

In six UEFA Europa League games this season, Keita has three assists and has shown a propensity to deliver incisive crosses.

His dynamism is reminiscent of Jonathan Biabiany.


Marian Sarr, Borussia Dortmund CB, Age: 18

Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp must have thought about starting Lukasz Piszczek at right-back and playing Kevin "I can play any position" Grosskreutz at centre-back against Marseille.

Nope, Sarr was given his senior debut and played well under the circumstances.

If Manuel Friedrich or Sokratis join Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic on the injury list, the start of 2014 will give Sarr a chance to break out.



Richairo Zivkovic, Groningen CF, Age: 17

He performs better as a super sub against tired defenders than as a starter.

Four of his five league goals this season have come off the bench, while he has scored one goal from five starts.

Zivkovic becoming a first team regular has further diminished the chances of David Teixeira emulating what compatriot Luis Suarez did at Groningen.



Sergi Darder, Malaga CM, Age: 19

Opposing teams just don't seem to pick up Darder's late runs into the box.

It is not an issue now since he has yet to score a goal, but when his 38 percent shooting accuracy rises to 60, he will be scoring 10-15 goals per season as a midfielder.

He gets past opposing players, contributes defensively and plays with intensity.

Considering this is his first top-flight season, Darder has been a handy player for Malaga.

If his shooting and passing improve, he has the potential to become an elite box-to-box midfielder.




Statistics via WhoScoredFFT Stats ZoneSquawka and Transfermarkt.