The BBC Sport XI of Premier League players aged 21 or younger at the start of 2019-20
The Premier League season might be on pause, but it has been a breakthrough campaign for several youngsters.
Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold and Manchester United’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka are already established in the top flight, but what about those who have only just announced themselves at the highest level?
BBC Sport has selected a team of young players who have impressed in 2019-20 – we’ve only picked from players aged 21 or under at the start of the campaign.
At the bottom of the page, you can rank the players in order of who you think has had the most impressive breakout season – and use the comments section to tell us who would make your XI.
Bournemouth have struggled this season but the emergence of goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale has been a highlight.
After joining the Cherries from Sheffield United in January 2017, the 21-year-old spent time on loan at Chesterfield and AFC Wimbledon, before making his full Premier League debut against the Blades in August.
Having moved above Artur Boruc as manager Eddie Howe’s first choice, no Bournemouth player has made more appearances than Ramsdale (28), who has missed just one game.
Only Newcastle United’s Martin Dubravka (117) and Arsenal’s Bernd Leno (104) have made more saves than Ramsdale (102) in the top flight this season.
Did you know? No goalkeeper has made more saves than Ramsdale in the Premier League in 2020 (36).
Brandon Williams has been one of the beneficiaries of manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s willingness to give youngsters an opportunity at Manchester United.
The academy graduate has made 12 league appearances, including nine starts, after being introduced off the bench for his debut against Liverpool in October.
The versatile defender, who has mostly played at left-back but is equally capable on the right, has scored once and likes to burst forward.
At 5ft 6in, Williams is one of the smallest defenders in the league, but his tenacity and full-blooded approach appears to have won over the United fans.
Did you know? Williams is one of only two Manchester United players born in the 2000s to start a Premier League match – the other being Mason Greenwood.
Japhet Tanganga was a surprise inclusion in Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham team for their home match against league leaders Liverpool in January.
But the Spurs academy product was assured and composed against the Reds’ talented front three of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.
Since that excellent full debut, the centre-half – who has also been deployed at right-back – has only missed two league games.
Lightning quick Tanganga is comfortable playing out from the back, and has demonstrated his ability to surge forward from wing-back in his six Premier League appearances.
Did you know? Tanganga has started 10 games for Spurs in 2020 – only Manchester United’s Williams has recorded more starts for under-21 Premier League players in this period (11).
Fikayo Tomori was always going to be a part of Frank Lampard’s plans, after playing a key role under the Chelsea boss while on loan at Derby County last season.
The athletic centre-back has stepped up to the Premier League with confidence, making starts in all 15 appearances, and scoring once.
Tomori is excellent in possession and has the speed to track opposition forwards.
The Blues academy graduate has vied for a starting berth with more experienced internationals Antonio Rudiger, Kurt Zouma and Andreas Christensen, but the endeavours of this season will hold him in good stead.
Did you know? Tomori is averaging 80 passes per 90 minutes in the Premier League this season, the most of any player aged 22 or younger.
Reece James has been allowed to flourish under Lampard’s youth policy at Stamford Bridge.
James impressed on loan at Wigan Athletic in the Championship last season, before stepping up to the Premier League this term.
He is a technically gifted footballer who is equally comfortable at right-back, in central midfield or central defence, and his ability to deliver dangerous crosses from wide has produced two assists.
Having made his league debut against Newcastle in October, the Blues academy graduate has made 17 appearances, including 11 starts.
Did you know? James’ goal against Ajax in this season’s Champions League meant he became Chelsea’s youngest scorer in the competition (19 years 332 days).
Have Arsenal unearthed the next Ashley Cole?
The Gunners have history of producing gifted left-backs, which is where winger Bukayo Saka has been deployed since progressing through the club’s youth ranks.
Before this season, Saka had only played seven minutes of top-flight football, but he has become a key member of the squad at Emirates Stadium.
He made his full Premier League debut against Aston Villa and has played 18 times, including 11 more starts.
His high energy in supporting attacks has produced three assists, with only Nicolas Pepe making more (six) for Arsenal in the league.
Did you know? Saka has 10 assists in all competitions in 2019-20 – the most by any Arsenal player.
Mason Mount has established himself as a key man under Lampard, having played for the Chelsea boss at Derby last term.
The midfielder has made a club-leading 29 appearances, 25 of them starts, including his full debut against Manchester United on the opening weekend in August.
A technical footballer who plays in his manager’s mould, Mount has contributed six goals and four assists from the number 10 position.
He has been with the club since the age of six, and won his first senior England cap against Bulgaria in September.
Did you know? Mount is the youngest Chelsea player (20 years 311 days) to score a goal for England since Jimmy Greaves in November 1960 against Wales (20 years 277 days).
Skill, pace and an eye for goal. Todd Cantwell has been Norwich City’s standout performer despite their disappointing return to the top flight.
The Canaries academy product featured heavily in the Championship, and he has adjusted to the step up with real composure.
The midfielder has played in every game so far, making 25 starts and scoring six goals.
Cantwell doubled his side’s lead in their famous win over champions Manchester City in September.
Did you know? No English midfielder who started the Premier League season aged 21 or younger has created more chances from open play than Cantwell (31).
Mason Greenwood is one of the latest academy products to make his mark at Manchester United.
An all-round striker who is clinical in front of goal, Greenwood opened his Premier League account four minutes after coming on as a substitute against Sheffield United in November.
The teenager has scored five goals in 22 appearances this season, although he has been limited to just four starts, with experienced internationals Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial also at boss Solskjaer’s disposal.
Greenwood has played a leading role in the club’s Europa League campaign, scoring five goals in seven games.
Did you know? Greenwood has scored 12 goals in all competitions this season, the most of any Premier League teenager.
Arsenal won the race to sign highly rated Gabriel Martinelli in July, and the Brazilian has had quite the debut campaign.
The Gunners are not short of attacking options, with the gifted Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe also at the Emirates, but teenager Martinelli has made 14 appearances.
The forward, who opened his goalscoring account on his full league debut against West Ham United, has scored three goals in his six Premier League starts.
The pick of his goals came at Stamford Bridge when he collected the ball deep inside his own half, before sprinting clear and sliding the ball past Kepa Arrizabalaga at the other end.
Did you know? Martinelli is the first teenager to score 10 goals in a season for Arsenal since Nicolas Anelka in 1998-99.
After signing from Rennes for a club record fee of over £25m in August, Ismaila Sarr had a slow start to life at Vicarage Road, scoring just one league goal before Nigel Pearson took charge in December.
Since Pearson’s arrival, both the club and Sarr have enjoyed some success, with the latter scoring three goals in the impressive home victories over Manchester United and Liverpool.
His pace and trickery unsettled champions-elect Liverpool, who were unable to handle him as he took both goals with an assured calmness.
The Senegal international has scored five goals and produced three assists in 19 appearances, and he will be crucial in Watford’s survival bid once the season resumes.
Did you know? Against Liverpool in February, Sarr was directly involved in three goals (two goals, one assist) – the first player to be involved in three Premier League goals against the Reds since Harry Kane in October 2017.
Now it’s over to you to have YOUR say…
All 11 have impressed so far this season, but which player has had the most impact? Rank the BBC Sport XI from 1-11 below.
Who has had the most impact?
11 talented youngsters, but in which order?