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World Cup 2022: The 10 favorites to be Golden Boy at the 2022 World Cup: Pedri, Musiala, Saka, Bellingham, Gavi…

The Qatar 2022 World Cup kicks off on November 20 and people have already started making their predictions.

Who will be the champion? Who will win the Golden Boot? Who will be the Golden Boy? The rules around this last prize are clear: Players born on or after January 1, 2001, will be eligible.

That rules out the likes of Vinicius Junior (2000), Phil Foden (2000), Rafael Leao (1999), Federico Valverde (1998), and Kylian Mbappe (1998).

Not all of them are listed below – Piero Hincapie, Gabriel Martinelli, Jurrien Timber, Josko Gvardiol, William Saliba, Xavi Simons and Gio Reyna, among others, are missing.

10 of the favorites to win the 2022 World Cup’s Golden Boy award

Pedri (Spain – Barcelona – 2002)

At 19 years of age, and with only 14 international appearances, Pedri is Spain’s star player.

“He is a unique player, totally different from the rest,” said Luis Enrique.

At Euro 2020 he was named Best Young Player of the tournament and he is considered Andres Iniesta‘s natural heir.

Rodrygo Goes (Brazil – Real Madrid – 2001)

Rodrygo has been in stellar form for Real Madrid and played an integral role in their Champions League run last year.

However, with the likes of Neymar, Raphinha, and Vinicius ahead of him, Rodrygo goes into the tournament more as an impact sub than a starter.

However, given his versatility, Rodrygo could play a crucial role in helping Brazil win their first World Cup after 20 years.

Jamal Musiala (Germany – Bayern Munich – 2003)

Musiala has had a unique international career, the Bayern Munich player played for England at Under-15 level, then Germany for U16s, England again at Under-21 level before declaring himself for Germany at the professional stage.

Having scored 12 goals and provided a further 10 assists this season, Musiala has been the most productive player on this list.

Bukayo Saka (England – Arsenal – 2001)

One of the key cogs in an Arsenal side that stands at the top of the Premier League standings, Saka will be desperate to make up for his penalty miss during the Euro 2020 final.

“He is a very reliable player, a rare quality in such a young footballer,” England boss Gareth Southgate said. “His ability to receive under pressure is very important to us.”

Nuno Mendes (Portugal – PSG – 2002)

The Paris Saint-Germain left-back Mendes impressed many during his first season at the French side.

Given his first start for Portugal under Fernando Santos, the young defender has already accumulated 16 starts at the age of 20.

Competing with Raphael Guerreiro, the youngster may find game time hard to come by this World Cup.

Gavi (Spain – Barcelona – 2004)

Following in the footsteps of his compatriot Pedri, Gavi boasts a slew of records including being the youngest player to debut (17 years and 62 days), score (17 years and 304 days) and go to a World Cup with Spain.

“It’s a volcano in eruption. It’s hard not to fall in love with Gavi,” Spain coach Luis Enrique stated.

Eduardo Camavinga (France – Real Madrid – 2002)

Camavinga was called up to the French squad following injuries to Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante.

Having won a LaLiga Santander and Champions League double with Real Madrid last season, Camavinga also has the advantage of slotting into a midfield with fellow Real Madrid talent Aurelien Tchouameni.

Jude Bellingham (England – Borussia Dortmund – 2003)

Set to start alongside Declan Rice, Bellingham has become the player to watch at the World Cup.

The midfielder has had a spectacular season so far scoring nine goals and providing three assists in 22 games, even scoring in four consecutive games in the Champions League.

With a transfer battle brewing off the pitch, Bellingham enters the tournament as one of its finest young prospects.

Enzo Fernandez (Argentina – Benfica – 2001)

One of the breakout stars of the season Fernandez has helped Benfica navigate the Champions League group stage and helped them remain unbeaten in Portugal.

Following Giovani Lo Celso‘s injury, Fernandez could very well become a starter for Argentina.

Ansu Fati (Spain – Barcelona – 2002)

The last of the Spanish trident, Ansu remains a dark horse for the trophy. He is currently behind Ferran Torres, Marco Asensio and Pablo Sarabia for a place on the wings and could find game time hard to come by.

However, given that he has scored three goals and provided three assists in just 700 minutes of play, his impact as a substitute cannot be overlooked.

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