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The next generation made their mark on the international stage this weekend

Debut delight was on the menu across the globe

Unpopular opinion; international breaks really aren’t all that bad.

Sure the emotional journey might not match that of supporting your club team, but the doom and gloom is exaggerated.

Just look at Germany’s pulsating win over Holland on Sunday night for starters.


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An 89th minute winner in a 3-2 game? Bit dull if you ask me

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An 89th minute winner in a 3-2 game? Bit dull if you ask me

And there’s a new generation of emerging talents making the international stage fun again.

This weekend was a watershed moment for many of them, with debut delight on the menu across the globe for many players earmarked as the future of their respective nations.

Mark my words, we’ll be lapping this lot up for years to come…

Jadon Sancho and Callum Hudson-Odoi

In tandem

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In tandem

It feels like England have been waiting years for a direct, bamboozling winger and then, whadoyaknow, two come a long at once.

Sancho is mustard, gravy and nutella all rolled into one devilishly tasty ball of fun, marking his competitive debut with a first competitive assist against Czech Republic.

Any club with any serious ambition should be prepared to give Dortmund a blank cheque this summer. The kid is that good.

Not to be outdone by his team-mate, Hudson-Odoi also made an instant impact.

Instant impact

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Instant impact

‘You know what, there’s no point being nervous or shy – do what you normally do and be confident,” are the words of a supremely confident, supremely cocksure young man. No wonder he set up the fifth goal just 14 minutes after coming on for his senior debut.

Sancho and Hudson-Odoi are playground footballers now making the international stage their own playground. Enjoy them.

Lucas Paqueta

That number 10 shirt has seen some glorious faces

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That number 10 shirt has seen some glorious faces

Introducing Kaka Mark II; the left footed edition.

Brazil are stuck in a bit of a funk by their standards after that disappointing World Cup quarter-final exit last summer. The last eight just ain’t good enough for the Samba stars.

But in Paqueta they have a new poster boy to adore, particularly with Neymar injured and Philippe Coutinho horribly misfiring at the moment.

The AC Milan sensation scored his first senior goal against Panama on Saturday and is capable of doing stuff like this:

Joga Bonito.

Moise Kean and Nicolo Zaniolo

Not to be confused with Steve Kean

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Not to be confused with Steve Kean

Someone in the office the other day pondered whether Moise Kean was the love child of David Moyes and Steve Kean. Thankfully he is isn’t and the real thing is the real deal.

The 19-year-old is knocking on the door of the Juventus first team and now has an international goal to back up his bristling potential.

Kean unerringly tucked away Italy’s second in the 2-0 win over Finland at the weekend and has confidence oozing through his veins at the moment after a double for Juve earlier this month too.

Generations collide

AFP
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Generations collide

Elsewhere there was another first for another 19-year-old; a debut for highly-rated Roma star Zaniolo.

Some think he’s the country’s most exciting teenager since Francesco Totti. When he can do things like this, you can see why:

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“Say when”

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