Top 11 Ligue 1 youngsters to watch in 2016/17 ft. Koziello, Boufal & more

Top 11 Ligue 1 youngsters to watch in 2016/17 ft. Koziello, Boufal & more

Excitement levels across Europe are rising with the new football season set to begin, with Ligue 1 one of the leagues kicking off this weekend. Paris Saint-Germain are favourites to land a fifth successive crown but it’s set to be competitive, with the likes of Lyon and Monaco ready to push Le Parisians all the way.

It certainly won’t be easy though but the good news is that, whatever happens, we’re set to see some really exciting talents continue their development. In recent seasons, the likes of Ousmane Dembele, Samuel Umtiti and Anthony Martial have starred in the French domestic league before earning a big money move abroad.

There’s big footsteps to follow and Ligue 1 continues to grow, so make sure you tune in this season and check out these talents!

Enzo Crivelli: Bastia

On-loan from Bordeaux, 21-year-old striker Enzo Crivelli will be looking to make an impression at Bastia after scoring four Ligue 1 goals for his parent club during the past two seasons. He made an instant impression last season by scoring Bordeaux’s opening goal of the 2015/16 campaign and also netted the decisive away goal in a Europa League play-off match against Kairat, which sent the club through to the group stages of the continental tournament.

Sofiane Boufal: Lille

22-year-old Moroccan international Sofiane Boufal has established himself as one of the best players in the league and could cement that standing further in the forthcoming campaign, with a host of other big names sealing transfers abroad. Whilst he’s also been linked with an exit, interest in his services is cooling at this stage in the window and it’s likely he’ll remain in France for at least another season.

Corentin Tolisso: Lyon

22-year-old Corentin Tolisso is already well immersed in the Lyon set-up, having made his debut for the club three years ago. Now with 75 Ligue 1 appearances, along with 13 goals, Tolisso turned down a lucrative move to Napoli last month to remain with his beloved club and stated he believes in their progress- which is a massive boost to Bruno Genesio’s side.

Bernardo Silva: Monaco

Portugal’s success at Euro 2016 has seen a number of their internationals increase their profile but there is plenty of stars waiting behind the scenes for their chance. 21-year-old Bernardo Silva is an example of that, as he’ll be keen to add to his six senior caps for his nation. Having spent two-years with Monaco, the youngster will be carrying added responsibility as the French principality side try to push PSG for the Ligue 1 crown.

MONACO - AUGUST 25:  Bernardo Silva (R) of Monaco is challenged by Pablo Piatti of Valencia during the UEFA Champions League qualifying round play off second leg match between Monaco and Valencia on August 25, 2015 in Monaco, Monaco.  (Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images)
MONACO – AUGUST 25: Bernardo Silva (R) of Monaco is challenged by Pablo Piatti of Valencia during the UEFA Champions League qualifying round play off second leg match between Monaco and Valencia on August 25, 2015 in Monaco, Monaco. (Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images)

Alassane Plea: Nice

Now 23-years-old, Alassane Plea is one of the older players in this list and he’s earned a wealth of experience during spells with Lyon, Auxerre and now Nice. His side were one of the surprise packages of the 2015/16 season, largely thanks to Hatem Ben Arfa’s contribution, but his departure could allow Plea to become increasingly important for his club.

Paul Nardi: Stade Rennes

22-year-old Paul Nardi has been one of the most exciting Ligue 1 youngsters during the past few seasons but with Danijel Subasic ahead of him in the Monaco ranks, opportunities have been limited. Now spending the season on-loan at Stade Rennes, Nardi has the chance to establish himself further and compete with Subasic upon his return to Monaco.

Karim Rekik: Marseille

The former Manchester City youngster has established himself at Marseille since leaving the Premier League last summer and will be looking for a better team performance this term, following Marseille’s struggles last term that saw them miss out on European football. With 24 Ligue 1 appearances in his first season, and having scored against rivals Lyon, Rekik has a good platform to build upon and should enjoy a good campaign.

François Kamano: Bordeaux

The 20-year-old forward moved to Bordeaux from Bastia this summer and will be hoping for a decent maiden campaign with his new side, having scored seven Ligue 1 goals in his 47 appearances with Bastia. Competition with the likes of Thomas Toure and Jeremy Menez could effect his involvement but he bolsters the squad and will have the chance to make an impression.

PARIS, FRANCE - APRIL 06:  Adrien Rabiot of Paris Saint-Germain celebrates scoring his team's second goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final First Leg match between Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City at Parc des Princes on April 6, 2016 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE – APRIL 06: Adrien Rabiot of Paris Saint-Germain celebrates scoring his team’s second goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final First Leg match between Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City at Parc des Princes on April 6, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Vincent Koziello: Nice

20-year-old Vincent Koziello has broken through to Nice’s set-up in the past two seasons, earning 27 appearances, and the loss of star-man Hatem Ben Arfa could allow the young Frenchman to become increasingly important for the Europa League outfit. Beating last season’s standings could be a stretch but Nice will be aiming for another finish in a European spot, which Koziello can certainly help with.

Thomas Lemar: Monaco

Thomas Lemar, 20, was one of the best young players in Ligue 1 last season and he’ll be looking to build upon those performances this term. With over 50 Ligue 1 appearances to boast from his career thus far, and a wealth of experience with the French youth squads, Lemar is a star in the making and Monaco will be looking at him to provide an impact in their quest to take the crown from PSG this season.

Adrien Rabiot: Paris Saint-Germain

Probably the most well-known name on this list, Adrien Rabiot is another youngster who was one of the best performers in his age group last season. Transfer rumours have surrounded Rabiot during the past few years, due to limited playing opportunities, but he put that behind him last term and was a crucial player to Laurent Blanc’s side- and he’ll have a chance to become even more important if he establishes himself under new boss Unai Emery- although there is new competition in the squad following the arrival of Grzegorz Krychowiak.

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