It’s been a breakthrough season for several teenage talents in the Premier League this season, with a number of precocious prospects making an impact in the top flight.
Brighton’s 2-0 win at Bournemouth in midweek was notable, with both goals coming from players aged under 20 as the Seagulls continue to unearth players of rich potential. Eight teenagers have scored a Premier League goal this season and we’ve looked at each youngster to have found the net.
Romeo Lavia was the first teenager on the scoresheet this season as the midfielder fired home against Chelsea in August.
A summer signing from Manchester City, Lavia celebrated his first Southampton goal in the club’s comeback win at St Mary’s, as he lashed past Edouard Mendy after Chelsea failed to clear a corner.
The 19-year-old has made a positive impression since leaving City in search of regular first-team football last summer and was rewarded with a first cap for Belgium during March’s international break.
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) August 30, 2022
City are understood to have a buy-back clause that will become active in 2024, but several leading clubs are already monitoring Lavia with Southampton in the Premier League’s relegation places. Chelsea were willing to discuss a £50m deal for Lavia last summer, just two months after his arrival on the south coast for a fraction of that fee.
Harvey Elliott’s potential has been clear from a young age, as he became the then-youngest Premier League player ever when making his debut for Fulham, aged 16 years and 30 days.
The midfielder has had a breakthrough season at Liverpool this term with 41 appearances in all competitions, recovering from the horror ankle injury sustained last season to become a regular in Jurgen Klopp’s plans.
Standout displays and a stunning first Premier League goal 🙌
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) September 30, 2022
He has scored five goals in all competitions, including a first Premier League goal during the Reds’ record 9-0 thrashing of Bournemouth in August. Elliott celebrated his 20th birthday earlier this month and will hope to continue his development at Anfield.
Fabio Carvalho opened his account for Liverpool in the same fixture as Elliott, having followed the latter’s path from Fulham to Anfield.
Carvalho starred during Fulham’s promotion-winning season in 2021/22, as he scored ten Championship goals to be named in the divisional Team of the Year. He has struggled for regular opportunities since signing for Liverpool last summer, but has shown glimpses of his talent with well-taken goals against Bournemouth and Newcastle.
The first was a brilliant volley as Liverpool hit the Cherries for NINE at Anfield, before a last-gasp winner against Newcastle.
Fabio Carvalho in front of the Kop 👌
An excellent volleyed finish to open his Reds account ⚽ pic.twitter.com/eY2wEPMvHk
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) August 27, 2022
Alejandro Garnacho’s performances during Manchester United’s FA Youth Cup triumph got pulses racing last season and the forward has made a bright start following his introduction into the senior side.
Garnacho has scored four goals in all competitions this season, including a first Premier League goal with a last-gasp winner at Fulham. The 18-year-old has been used mainly as an impact player with just four top-flight starts, but Erik ten Hag believes the Argentine is capable of more.
“I see today another step,” Ten Hag said after Garnacho’s goal against Leeds in February.
What. A. Moment! 😍🔊 pic.twitter.com/3a5PkVvH33
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) November 13, 2022
“I said to him before the game, ‘it’s time. You have an impact when you come on but now you have to have an impact as a starter’. And I think he is capable of it, so that is the next step he has to make.
“It is a great skill when you’re fearless, when you’re brave. I don’t think that it’s a skill that is so specific, there are not so many players in world football who can take players on, who can just out-dribble them and that skill he has.
“But he has more skills than only that, for example, finishing. But also I see he has a big engine, he is fast, he has speed, he can keep running for 90 minutes, for 120 minutes, it doesn’t matter how long, he can do it.”
Stefan Bajcetic has emerged as one of the few positives in a difficult season for Liverpool, whose midfield issues have seen the teenager thrust into the side.
The Spaniard has impressed with a series of mature performances the heart of the side and celebrated his first Premier League goal during the Reds’ 3-1 win at Aston Villa on Boxing Day. Bajectic’s goal came just two minutes after his introduction from the bench and was a highlight in a breakthrough season for the teenager.
Composure level 💯
Just two minutes after his introduction, a moment Stefan Bajcetic will never forget ❤️ pic.twitter.com/UOK9VGs7lq
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 26, 2022
The 18-year-old has suffered a setback after an adductor issue prematurely ended his season, but there is a solid foundation to build upon for next season. With Liverpool preparing an overhaul of their midfield this summer, Bajcetic will hope to have done enough to earn a place in Jurgen Klopp’s long-term plans.
Evan Ferguson’s star is one firmly on the rise, with the Brighton teenager fast emerging as one of the Premier League’s most exciting talents.
Ferguson has scored eight goals in all competitions and netted his fourth Premier League goal of the season at Bournemouth in midweek, with only Borussia Dortmund’s Youssoufa Moukoko having scored more goals among teenagers in Europe’s top five leagues (6).
Ferguson has averaged a goal or assist every 90 minutes for the Seagulls so far this season, a return that only Erling Haaland can better in the Premier League.
More than the numbers it is the quality of finishing which has caught the eye, from a towering header against Leicester to a brilliant backheel against Bournemouth.
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) January 21, 2023
Ferguson appears to have it all as a modern centre-forward, combining an instinctive goalscoring touch with intelligent football outside the penalty box. He marked his full debut for Ireland with a goal in March and appears the ideal solution to the Seagulls’ long-term issue at number nine.
Brighton might just be anticipating some notable knocks on the door this summer.
Wilfried Gnonto has proven to be a brilliant signing for Leeds this season, with the teenager’s performances having turned the heads of teams across the division.
Signed from FC Zurich for a fee of just £3.8m, he has emerged as one of the bargains of the campaign. Exciting and explosive, Gnonto has scored four goals in all competitions and netted his first in the Premier League against West Ham in January.
Roberto Mancini is understood to be a big admirer of the teenager and has handed Gnonto 10 caps for Italy since his international debut last year, with the forward celebrating a first goal for the Azzurri against Germany in June.
Gnonto also scored one of the goals of the season in the FA Cup, with this sublime scissor-kick in Leeds win over Cardiff at Elland Road.
This kid is SPECIAL 🔥
A sensational finish from @LUFC‘s Wilfried Gnonto puts them ahead 👏
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) January 18, 2023
Julio Enciso became the eighth teenager to score a Premier League goal this season after scoring his first goal for the Seagulls against Bournemouth in midweek.
The Paraguayan is the latest rough diamond being smoothed at the Amex Stadium, having signed for Brighton from Club Libertad last summer. Enciso had made his debut for the South American side aged just 15 and scored 18 goals in 51 appearances before his move to England.
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) April 6, 2023
He joined Evan Ferguson on the scoresheet in the 2-0 win at Bournemouth, as the Seagulls’ starlets combined to keep alive the club’s push for European football.
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