The 150 Players Football Index need to IPO ASAP, Article 1 - Premier League
Everyman and his dog are aware of the absence of football for the last month and a half. However, something else has been absent from Football Index for even longer… IPOs!
Most traders will be aware why IPOs have been absent, and I don’t want to waste any more space on this forum discussing them, as it’s a topic that’s been dissected many times. But for the uninformed, the first come first serve system, with designated release time slots, has literally broken the index on the last couple of occasions. In fact, I even predicted in my last set of IPO previews saying that if one person could break the index it would be Jude Bellingham…
However, IPOs are absolutely vital for the Index. Without adding new players regularly, the product quickly loses credibility. No one wants to have to explain to their mate who wants to join the Index that their punt that’s playing in a non-PB league isn’t on the index, or that they can’t buy their favourite yet-to-breakthrough prospect at their club.
Therefore, over the next 5 weeks I am to highlight 10 players from various leagues/countries/regions all over the globe to form a list of 150 players that Football Index need to IPO as soon as possible.
The Schedule is as follows:
Article 1: Premier League
Article 2: Championship
Article 3: Rest of the English Football League
Article 4: France
Article 5: Spain
Article 6: Italy
Article 7: Germany
Article 8: Netherlands
Article 9: Portugal
Article 10: Other Western European Leagues (Scotland, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland)
Article 11: Eastern European Leagues (including Russia)
Article 12: Brazil
Article 13: Argentina and the Rest of South America
Article 14: MLS and Mexico
Article 15: Rest of the World
By splitting it out into these sections, I think it highlights areas of the football world that may have been somewhat neglected by FI in terms of the player pool, and also how the index is truly global and needs to be for further expansion.
Please note that the rule for these articles is that if a player is on loan, they will be covered under the article in the league where they are currently on loan.
Right let’s get to article 1, the Premier League. Football Index has actually done a pretty good job in keeping the Premier League player pool up to date, and therefore this section highlights highly touted youngsters in the top 6 on the verge of a first team breakthrough, or youngsters just beginning to make their mark.
1.) Jayden Braaf – Manchester City + Netherlands – Age 17
It says a lot about the meteoric rise of Jayden Sancho that people are already christening players ‘The New Sancho’. This is an honour that Braaf is already receiving. Despite a youth career that saw him go to Ajax to PSV to Breda to Manchester City, it hasn’t hindered his development. Possessing lightening speed, the Dutchman has scored 9 goals in the Premier League 2 this year, the same as Curtis Jones and good enough for 5th in the league. 19 players have scored 7 or more goals in the Premier League 2 this year. Graaf is the youngest and only 17-year-old on the list. Yet to make his debut with Man City, rumours of a falling out with Guardiola and some run ins with youth team staff could be viewed as concerning or MB gold if his talent wins out, whether that’s at Man City or elsewhere.
2.) Joao Pedro – Watford & Brazil – Age 18
A deal was agreed around this time last year for Joao Pedro to move to Watford for a miserly £2.5 million and since then his stock has risen considerably. Bursting onto the scene at Fluminense, he bagged six goals for the club in 19 starts before securing his work permit and moving to Watford. Made two appearances in the FA Cup already, and the road to first team football isn’t blocked by any superstars in the Hornets front line, meaning we could be seeing more of him soon. Also has a 15-year old girlfriend, but we will gloss over that.
3.) Leonardo Campana – Wolves & Ecuador – Age 19
Burst onto the scene in 2019 when unfancied Ecuador won their first ever Under 20’s South American Championship. Top scorer in the tournament with 6 goals, Campana instantly attracted interest from Europe. He eventually settled on a move to Wolves this window, and although he has yet to appear, he has made the bench for 2 Europa League knockout ties. Wolves have proven very apt at developing young players and with another European run on the cards for next season, Campana could feature more regularly.
4.) Max Killman – Wolves & England – Age 22
A left field pick this one but a late bloomer and a story I love. Kilman was playing for Maidenhead at the start of the 2018/19 season but already had 25 England caps to his name – in Futsal. Has adopted to Premier League football remarkably well considering, and has appeared over 10 times this year, and done particularly well at Anfield and against Manchester United in the FA Cup. Wolves just extended his contract showing he is in their long-term plans, and is very good on the ball as one would expect of a futsal player. Would also score well in MB if someone on the index committed a murder.
5.) William Smallbone – Southampton & Ireland – Age 20
‘He is the future’ said Ralph Hassenhuttl after Smallbone started his first ever Premier League game in February, hitting the post in a win against Aston Villa. Started again the following week, and already has his first Southampton goal in an FA cup win over Huddersfield. Another club with an outstanding reputation for developing young players, Smallbone should get more chances when football resumes. In 76 minutes against West Ham he made 68 passes and 8 ball recoveries showing PB potential. An exciting box to box midfielder whose progress was stalled by a bad injury, he now appears back on track to become a regular for the Saints and Ireland in the future.
6.) Jeremy Ngakia – West Ham & England – Age 19
Ngakia made his Premier League debut at home against Liverpool. His next start was away against Liverpool. Nothing like being eased in gently… But Ngakia stood up well particularly in the second match at Anfield and earned further starts against Southampton and Arsenal before the interruption. Being a winger in is youth days, Ngakia unsurprisingly has speed and attacking intent in abundance. His PB scores so far have been a little underwhelming, but a young, English, attack minded full back getting starts in the Premier League should have no problem generating interest on the Index.
7.) Aliou Traore – Manchester United & France – Age 19
Traore is poised to be the next Manchester United youngster who makes the Index. Having just turned 19, he has already established himself as a regular in United’s U23 side and has 4 goals in 14 games to his name this season. Whilst his technical ability still needs some work, his power, pace and physicality have earned the lazy comparisons to Paul Pogba.
8.) Neco Williams – Liverpool & England – Age 18
Another full back converted from a winger, Neco Williams is a fine talent in an unideal position. 3 assists in 5 games demonstrate the youngsters attacking qualities, but being a right back at Liverpool is an unfortunate place to be with TAA entrenched as the starter. However, he has the ability to make it and has overtook fellow highly rated youngster Ki-Jana Hoever in the pecking order, and with Liverpool’s phenomenal success he will certainly see some action to advertise his talents going forward. Being Welsh enhances his international prospects too.
9.) Folarin Bolagun – Arsenal & England – Age 18
It speaks volumes that Bolagun was subject to a £5 million bid in January. Firstly, to attract that sort of bid for a player who has never appeared in the first team is telling, and secondly that the club was Brentford, a club with such a great record of identifying young talent speaks volumes. Bolagun has a good all-round game and can handle things physically standing at 6ft and being full of pace. A quality finisher, Bolagun has 10 goals in Premier League 2 this season, good enough for 3rd in the division. The two players ahead of him are both in their twenties.
10.) Faustino Anjorin – Chelsea & England – Age 18
Lack of English players had long been a bone of contention at Chelsea until the last couple of seasons. Now, the conveyor belt seems constant. The latest cab off the rank is ‘Tino Anjorin, who made his Premier League debut in March. A box to box midfield who offers a real goal threat, A quick check of messers Mount, Gallagher and Gilmour show his potential on the Index. Having just signed a 5-year contract, he’s here to stay. And yes, he was named after Tino Asprilla.
Ben_pz last edited by Ben_pz
Would also score well in MB if someone on the index committed a murder.
Took me way too long to get that
Great info. Thanks for taking the time to write this
Chris J last edited by
Some bed time reading right there
150 IPO’s launching during a no football period initially sounds like something straight out of my nightmares, but with instant sell disabled maybe it’s actually the safest time to throw some new players in.
I know what your saying, but I think FI needs to get away from adding sure home run things onto the index. I look at Pedro Neto as an example, he was on the index when he was in lazio reserves. I did some research on him, took a punt on him. Those players don’t really exist any more on the index, certainly not outside the premier league.
Chris J last edited by
@Ben_pz Be ready for the puns when United’s latest youth prospect makes it onto here;
Balogun is always being talked about and looks very promising but I’ve not seen that much of him.
It wouldn’t surprise me if he made a big impression some point soon though.