Five Under-21 Centre-backs with Great Potential

Category: News | New Talents

We put the database to work to find young central defenders with a great future."

Published:27/03/2024

It’s not common for very young central defenders to be invested in major leagues. As often happens, these investments occur in lower-tier leagues where young talent gains experience early on to generate value and secure interesting opportunities in a higher-level and more hierarchical league.

In this list, we’re going to highlight and visualize with data players who have little time left in their current club and league. They are young, experienced, progressing, and talented enough to make the leap.

Valentín Gómez – Vélez Sarsfield – 2003 – Market value of 8 million euros

Yes, he has appeared in other searches published on our blog because from a very young age, he has enjoyed opportunities in Argentine football, a place where young talent is always found. But his performance has grown tremendously in recent months. At 20, he has grown in responsibility, determination, volume of play, and accuracy. He wins more aerial duels, is more precise in passing, loses the ball less, commits fewer fouls, and makes more interceptions. In June, he will turn 21, but he seems ready for an opportunity in a higher-level league.

Konstantinos Koulierakis – PAOK – 2003 – Market value of 6 million euros

Within the radar of big European clubs, perhaps he is the great young talent of Greek football. With an extraordinary physical base, with enormous possibilities with the ball (the radar used in the graph below only contains metrics with the ball), with a very important influence in possessions that end in shots. He is a clear case of a player for whom the context in which he plays is too small. Great personality to play with a high defensive line and lead the team in the opponent’s half both with and without the ball.

Nicolás Romero – Atlético Tucumán – 2003 – Market value of 3.5 million euros

Debuting in Atlético Tucumán’s first team at 17, Nicolás Romero already has a large number of games under his belt with the first team and with several coaches. Decisive in duels and moving to the wing or intermediate areas, a classic Argentine defender, very involved and with good success rates.

Ariel Mosor – Piast Gilwice – 2003 – Market value of 3 million euros

One of the most interesting leagues to find talent to develop and sell at a higher price is the Polish Ekstraklasa. Among its best players, who have already been linked to clubs of a high European level, is Ariel Mosor, a player with great physical and competitive conditions, very secure, decisive, and mobile to defend against different forwards. Extremely effective in shots in the opposing area.

Lucas Hey – Nordsjaelland – 2003 – Market value of 3 million euros

We end with a central defender already proven in the Danish league, demonstrating his level in a club that is always synonymous with guarantee in detecting and developing talent. He arrived at the club for a fee of 2 million euros, quite a sum for a central defender by Danish football standards. A very complete central defender, very secure with the ball, reliable in duels, with great physicality and room for improvement. Despite Adam Nagalo being more creative with the ball, Hey surpasses him in defensive aspects both on the ground and in the air.

Founded in 2017 as a consultancy, Driblab has driven innovation through data in all aspects of professional football. Thanks to a transversal model, its database collects and models statistics in all directions. From converting matches and videos into bespoke data for training academies to developing cutting-edge technology, helping clubs, federations and representative agencies in talent scouting and transfer markets. Driblab’s smart data is used by clubs all over the world, with success stories such as Dinamo Zagreb, Real Betis and Girondins Bordeaux among others. Here you can find out more about how we work and what we offer.

Autor: Alejandro Arroyo
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