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3 Stacks' Official List of Young Studs You Should Watch Out For In 2020

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Following its wildly successful first iteration last year, Stacksy's young studs list is back and better than ever, just in time for the start of the new decade! While last year's list was a masterpiece, I wracked my brain to figure out how I could improve it, because we can all improve. Credit to me for not being complacent. And what I realize is that I'm too nice. I'm too generous. I'm too liberal in who I bestow the great title of "young stud" to. Therefore, I have decided to cut the list down from 15, to 10 this year. Not out of laziness, no, of course not. Because the standards have risen. Just like the standards should rise in our own lives on the eve of the earth's 202nd decade, (if using the Gregorian Calendar) to make it our greatest decade. Each and every one of us. So lets go, baby, I'm fucking pumped! As with last year, the criteria is players age 21 and under and no goalkeepers.

 

Honourable Mention: Harvey Elliott

 

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Boom, I lied. I'm hitting you with surprises right off the jump. This list will be 10 + 1 very special honourable mention. Our very own man-bun/top-knot with designs in his hair having, Harry Kane mong calling, Harv Elliott. And I want to start with his style choices. My plea, from me to you, dear reader: Let a stud look like he wants to look. He doesn't need to change. Not for you, not for me, not for anyone. Because once he makes it to the big time, he'll be the fashion icon for a whole new generation of kids who'll want to look just like Harv does. Don't take that away from him.

 

So now that that's out of the way, on the football side, we all see it. We all see the touch, the delicate left foot. He's basically Messi. Jamie Redknapp said so.

 

 

Honourable Mention But Not Really: I really, really, really wanted to talk about some Ligue 1 studs in this article but couldn't find a place for them, so I'll just name two people: Eduardo Camavinga and William Saliba and leave it at that. When they become top players there will be a record of me pointing them out and that will be enough to crown me a genius.

 

 

10: Alphonso Davies, Left Back, Bayern Munich and Canada

 

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You thought it was a joke when I put him in the list last year, didn't you? You thought: he's in there because you're Canadian and you're biased. This kid sucks, he should stick to hockey. Well guess what? Up yours, that's what. This kid is the goddamn real deal. As a left back, which I had not considered one bit, but there you go, we all have blind spots in player evaluation. Some more than others. I won't name names, but they know who they are on this forum.

 

Anyway, he's now been Bayern's regular left back for 14 games and he's been amazing. A revelation. He made someone who will definitely make an appearance on this list (spoiler alert) look more s t u p i d than s t u d. The future is bright for him and I love it. If Bayern put him on the bench when their CB's get back to fitness, they're going in my personal graveyard. Dead to me.

 

 

9: Rodrygo Fati Jr., Forwards, Real Madrid/Barca, Brazil/Spain

 

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Another twist. Now I bet you're thinking: 3 players at one spot in the rankings? A threesome? What is this? Here's the thing, when a 16/17/18 year old kid has impressive performances at clubs like Real Madrid and Barcelona, it's shoved down your throat. Next Messi this, next Ronaldo that, blah blah blah. But Rodrygo, Ansu Fati and Vinicius Jr.  have all been very impressive.

 

They're all quick, good with ball, make good decisions for their age and they will most likely become very good players. Except, they're basically the same types of players, playing the same types of positions, who have had similarly eye-catching performances. Basically, I can't separate them, so they are all at #9.

 

 

8: Erling Braut Haaland, Centre Forward, Borussia Dortmund and Norway

 

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Yeah, he's an ugly, weird-looking bastard but he's hard to ignore. We've had a front row view to see him and he's looked impressive at times. Other times he has looked like a bit of a donkey. You can't ignore the numbers, though. 8 goals in the Champions League group stage, 28 in total with 7 assists in 22 games. He's a brute. A brute who can run fast and finish.

 

He's the type of freakish man-child who looks like he belongs in a haunted house. Because of his distorted face and his gigantic body which belies the fact he's still a teenager. You didn't see human beings like him back in the 1950's, the 60's. Besides the 0.0000000001% of cases, kids were normal. They would grow up to be normal proportionally. This kid looks like he was genetically engineered, he looks abnormal. That being the case, I think he'll be alright.

 

 

7: Kai Havertz, Attacking Midfielder, Bayer Leverkusen and Germany

 

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It was proposed to me last year that he was a notable omission from my list. Truth be told, that was probably a fair gripe, but there's just not that much to say about him. He's a boring, white, tall German guy. There are literally millions of those. He has 23 goals playing behind the striker since the start of last season, though, so that deserves props and leaves me no choice but to put him on this list, I guess.

 

There is nothing interesting to say about this guy, so I'll have to resort to actually talking about football here. He's actually way less productive this season, reason being that he's been playing deeper, it seems. Maybe his coach wants him to be a centre mid, maybe he wants to be a centre mid, maybe he's been sussed out and is shite. Who knows. What intrigue. He's a young stud, but only because he's got the numbers to back it up. I'm indifferent to him and everybody knows you want to love or hate, not be indifferent.

 

 

6: Joao Felix, Second Striker, Atletico Madrid and Portugal

 

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Not actually all that different to Havertz in terms of productivity and situation (he has similarly been average this year at Atletico) but this is why I write these articles. This why I get excited to talk about these young studs; because it's not about the numbers, it's about how they make you feel inside. Unlike Havertz, Joao Felix makes me feel inside.

 

He's got that Justin Beiber hair flowing in the wind, he's got that Latin flavour in his play, he's got that boyish charm on the pitch, and he plays the most exotic of positions; the 9 and a half. The half-striker-half-#10 position that requires such skill, such intelligence. He can and will do it at the highest level. I'm sure of it.

 

 

5: Matthijs de Ligt, Centre Back, Juventus and Holland

 

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From what I've seen, he's either been hilariously, comedically fucking shite at Juve, or puts in a man of the match display. But you know what, that's all par for the course for a young stud. They live and learn, they make mistakes and then the talent shines through here and there and you're reminded that this is a journey with ups and downs. I can't take him off the list because sometimes he goes through downs when he's shown how high the highs can be.

 

It reminds me of my own life, the dichotomy of my own humanity. An old flame once told me: "Stacks, you dick me down like a world champion, but sometimes you can be a real fucking prick".  Lesson being, I've got my strengths and weaknesses, my highs and my lows. I just gotta find a happy medium and I'll be alright. Same for young Matthijs.

 

 

4: Martin Odegaard, Attacking Midfielder, Real Sociedad on loan from Real Madrid and Norway

 

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This kid is the quintessential young stud. Announced as the next great player at the age of 15, signed for Real Madrid at the age of 16. The world was at his fingertips. And then, for the next 3 years, as he developed in a low-pressure environment with numerous loan spells, the collective football world showed its impatience. "Where is Odegaard, I thought he was supposed to be the next Messi derp derp" they bellowed, as spit dripped down their chins. Well, here he is, you cunts, here he is.

 

He reportedly showed some good things at Vitesse last season, but this season at Sociedad he has been a flat out star. This is why you don't give up on a young stud. He has everything; touch, vision, intelligence, quick feet, weight of pass, a great left foot, he can run, he has decent work rate. He has been one of the best players in La Liga this season. If Jack Grealish didn't exist, he'd currently be my fave. That is the highest of praise coming from me. I'd LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE LOVE it if we could sign him.

 

 

3: Jadon Sancho, Winger, Borussia Dortmund and England

 

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He is the English Neymar, minus the habitual showboating and egregious play-acting. Not many people have the guts to make such a comparison, but I do. Creative winger with brilliant technical ability who creates and scores goals at a high clip? Please, they're basically the same person. When Jadon "the English Neymar" Sancho becomes his commonly used nickname I trust you'll remember who to think of; your boy Stacks. I'll throw another one out just for good measure; Jadon "the English Hazard" Sancho. I'm not a big comparison guy, but those will catch on, guaranteed.

 

In all seriousness, he's extremely good. That's all there is to say. I wrote a post of the year candidate on the qualities of young Jadon in the not-that-relevantly-titled-anymore "Summer 19 Transfer Thread" on the MF that is worth the price of membership to this site alone.

 

 

2: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Right Back, Liverpool and England

 

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Our boy. I wish I could put him at #1, I really do, but he's got an extra-terrestrial being to contend with for that honour so he's got to settle for #2. But to be honest, he's as good as a young stud can get. An academy young stud. A home grown young stud. An experienced young stud who has already played and excelled in so many high intensity and high level matches at the tender age of 21. Think about that for a second; an experienced young stud. That is unbelievable. The best of both worlds. The virility and enthusiasm of youth, matched with the know-how of a silver-haired fox. This just got the ladies sopping wet.

 

Talking football for a second, he's in good hands with Klopp, who pretty much always knows how to get the most out of talented players. He's a right back now, and so he should be for a while yet. But who knows, could he become a central midfielder? A forward? A left back, when inverted full backs become all the rage? (again, I expect full credit when this happens) That's why it's exciting. Trent Alexander-Arnold from West Derby feels like he could do anything. Brilliant.

 

 

1: Kylian Mbappe, Forward, PSG and France

 

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Like I said, this kid is not a human being (shout out Lil Wayne), he is a humanoid lizard obsessed with personal and professional glory. Instead of the David Icke Alligator looking ones who shape shift into world leaders, he's actually part of an alien turtle species who have the ability to resemble a French footballer of African descent, but who also still suspiciously looks a little bit like a turtle.

 

Anyway, soon enough we'll have the top 2 players on this prestigious list to savour, here at Liverpool. As conspiracy theories are constantly being conjured up in order to explain our swashbuckling success, it's only logical we'd sign a shape shifting alien who we could then inject with our mega-steroids and who would also only score illegal goals that VAR would allow for us, creating an even more unfair advantage over the footballing world than we already have.

 

Thanks for reading and happy 2020!!!

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Dissapointed with this list. There's only Fati Jr that I've not heard and all the others are established at their clubs.

 

I expect younger, less prominent studs in next year's list.

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Saw Haaland snubbed the Mancs. They can't get anything right. They've been going on about him for ages and apparently were too cheap for even the modest fee because of clauses or something. Ole clearly wanted him as well. The ownership at United are completely shit and long may it continue. 

 

Speaking of United I hate to say it but shouldn't Greenwood have an honourable mention?

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Since he’s this year’s number 2, does seem about time for my annual Terence Trent West Derby joke.
 

Second only to the story about me seeing Lucy Pinder’s tits in the flesh before she started showing her nipples for sheer repetitiveness.

 

Enjoy it.

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11 minutes ago, Elite said:

Dissapointed with this list. There's only Fati Jr that I've not heard and all the others are established at their clubs.

 

I expect younger, less prominent studs in next year's list.

 

Yeah, a valiant effort but not hip enough, too light on obscurist snobbery to work. 

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13 minutes ago, Jordy Brouwer said:

Saw Haaland snubbed the Mancs. They can't get anything right. They've been going on about him for ages and apparently were too cheap for even the modest fee because of clauses or something. Ole clearly wanted him as well. The ownership at United are completely shit and long may it continue. 

 

Speaking of United I hate to say it but shouldn't Greenwood have an honourable mention?

Made up about that. Not that I was threatened by his ability but that face. Oh the horror. That face!!!! 

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27 minutes ago, amli said:

Can we have a female version.

Top 10 Lolitas we should look out for in 2020?

 

He's took all their virginity's and enhanced their sexual experiences for future life. 

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1 hour ago, Elite said:

Dissapointed with this list. There's only Fati Jr that I've not heard and all the others are established at their clubs.

 

I expect younger, less prominent studs in next year's list.

I hear you, mate, but I thought it better to keep the names mainstream. 

1 hour ago, moof said:

Can we revisit last years list and check how those studs are getting on? 

5 returning players which is great for them obviously because they still hold the young stud title. Most others have been aged out. Only one who is still eligible has not returned. Pietro Pellegri. That was when the list was based partly on how hot a player was, but the standards have risen this year. It's not enough. 

51 minutes ago, cloggypop said:

Needs more Donyell Malen and Myron Boadu. 

They were both under consideration. Boadu in particular has crazy goal and assist stats, but I don't know enough about them. 

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14 minutes ago, Remmie said:

Surely we're just making up names now?

 

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To be fair if someone told you to come up with Japanese names it would be similarly nonsensical I'm sure. 

 

"Erm .. Akria..... Kamikaze.

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1 hour ago, Bjornebye said:

Made up about that. Not that I was threatened by his ability but that face. Oh the horror. That face!!!! 

"Nice fellow, but can you imagine that face contorted in the throes of sexual ecstasy?"

 

"Not sure I'd want to Ron"...

 

I miss the Fast Show 

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