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Young Guns: Top 5 Emerging Talents in the EPL This Season

Posted 26 Aug 2023

Famed as one of the most competitive and exciting leagues in the world, the Premier League is packed with remarkable individual and collective quality.

But aside from the suspense and intrigue that always accompanies transfer signings, clubs are also keen to promote their own talents from within. Regardless of which team you support, witnessing emerging talents can genuinely enrich live EPL live events, as top prospects aim to make a name for themselves on English football's biggest stage. 

This has led to plenty of debate among the staff at Zenseats, who are always passionate about sharing their thoughts and opinions, whenever they’re not busy helping fans obtain the best ticket options available. After some animated conversations heading into the 2023-24 EPL campaign, these are the most exciting young guns we’re looking forward to watching.

Evan Ferguson - Brighton

The rise of Brighton in recent years has made for spectacular viewing, consistently defying the odds and seemingly punching well above their weight. After the initial struggles to remain afloat in the Premier League, the club has now become a hotbed for amazing talents.

Indeed, the biggest challenge now faced by the Seagulls is retaining their best players, whenever much bigger and wealthier clubs come calling.

One such player who is quickly attracting praise and attention is Evan Ferguson, the powerful young Irish striker with a big future ahead of him.

Since arriving from Bohemians in January 2021, Ferguson has made constant and steady progress through the youth ranks at Brighton, earning his first opportunities to shine during the 2021-22 season. Management was clearly impressed and last season, Ferguson became a regular feature in the side, making 25 appearances and scoring 10 goals in all competitions.

Ferguson will now be aiming to lead the attacking line for Brighton, which is remarkable progress for the 18-year-old, now the 2023-24 Premier League campaign is underway.

Rico Lewis – Manchester City

Blessed with an abundance of highly promising young talents right now, we could easily fill this list with Manchester City players. 

But one teenage sensation currently thrilling fans is Rico Lewis, who enjoyed an incredible rise to prominence during the 2022-23 campaign.

Lewis made 23 appearances in all competitions for City last season, never once looking out of place in such a star-studded team. His own contributions also earned glowing praise from Pep Guardiola, who has repeatedly acknowledged the growing influence of Lewis in his plans.

Still trying to absorb everything that has happened over the last year or so, Lewis is thriving in what he calls an ‘unbelievable’ situation, fuelled by ambition and the hunger for success. He also played an important role in the side as Man City went on to win the Treble, conquering the Premier League, FA Cup and the UEFA Champions League to match Manchester United’s 1999 achievement. 

Having won so much at such an early age, Lewis has already made his mark in the team. Thanks to the confidence of his boss, this lad from Bury, Greater Manchester, could become one of the greatest English players of his generation.

Kobbie Mainoo – Manchester United

While the club is famed for its continual production line of talents, not everyone successfully rises from the Manchester United academy to become first team regulars. Nevertheless, this is the growing ambition for the exciting, Stockport-born midfielder Kobbie Mainoo, who could find himself getting plenty of opportunities during the 2023-24 season.

Mainoo debuted for the Red Devils in January 2023, starting in the 3-0 win against Charlton Athletic. He then made his Premier League debut against Leicester City in February. After travelling with the United squad on their pre-season tour of the United States, the 18-year-old shone and produced some great performances.

Erik ten Hag already believes Mainoo can compete in the first team squad, which probably swayed the decision against sending the promising 18-year-old out on loan. As his game develops, we can expect to see the versatile midfielder enjoy more minutes on the pitch, even if it’s just providing additional cover for Casemiro and Mason Mount.

This could be the Premier League breakthrough season for Mainoo, who will certainly relish every minute he gets on the pitch, aiming to learn and continue his promising trajectory.

Destiny Udogie – Tottenham Hotspur 

Sporting one of the most appropriate names on this list, Destiny Udogie certainly boasts an exceptionally promising future at Spurs, having now made his breakthrough at the start of the 2023-24 Premier League season.

Originally signed in August 2022 from Udinese, then loaned immediately back to the Italian Serie A side, Udogie continued his impressive progress. But after an impressive pre-season, Tottenham Hotspur coach Ange Postecoglu agrees that ‘Destiny’ is calling. He now regards the 20-year-old Italian as his first-choice option at left-back.

Producing a stellar performance when Spurs beat Manchester United at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Udogie was outstanding in just his second Premier League appearance. He produced a little bit of everything, looking confident and exciting when supporting attacking moves, while solid in his defensive duties.

Spurs definitely have a gem on their hands, given that Destiny seems the kind of player that will keep growing and improving, especially having quickly become a key ingredient in the side.

Alejandro Garnacho – Manchester United

Reaching the conclusion of our list, we would be remiss to ignore the huge potential of Alejandro Garnacho, especially after such an impressive debut in the 2022-23 campaign. What’s more, his numbers for last season justify all the reasons to get excited about the 19-year-old, quickly establishing himself as a dribbling wizard who is ready to dazzle the Old Trafford crowd.

Based on Premier League stats for the 2022-23 campaign, Garnacho achieved 8.51 touches per 90 minutes in the rival penalty area, putting him firmly among the most dangerous wide players in the Premier League. This was clearly observed by his willingness to run at opponents. And he will be looking to terrorise more defences this season.

United boss Erik ten Hag is already a huge admirer of the Argentine youngster, convinced that Garnacho will make a ‘big impact in many games’ over the next few years. Having already made his breakthrough, the next challenge for Garnacho will be realising his full potential in the famous red shirt, as he seeks to achieve world-class recognition and win trophies.

Providing he can maintain full fitness and keep developing his amazing skills, Garnacho has every chance of becoming an iconic player for Manchester United.

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