As featured on NewsNow: Football news

Tokyo watch: Amad, Martinelli & five more players to watch at the Olympics

Football works a bit differently in the Olympics.

There's a rule which states that each player on every team must be born on or after January 1, 1997 with the exception of only 3 players.

This means each participating nation will field forced to a younger squad than they're used to - which should make for a very intriguing competition.

On that note, here's a look at seven players you should keep your eyes on throughout the course of the tournament.


Eric Garcia, Spain, FC Barcelona

Following his recent move from Premier League outfit Manchester City to Spanish giants FC Barcelona, Eric Garcia is without a doubt Gerard Pique's successor in the Barca backline.

This is not only because they have similar stunning ball-carrying abilities, but because Eric Garcia can be so much more than what Gerard Pique has been for the Blaugrana.

Coming off a decent Euros display, Garcia is set to anchor the Spanish national team's backline in the absence of the likes of Gerard Pique and Sergio Ramos due to the age requirements.

He will be looking to put up a streak of impressive performances alongside his Barcelona teammate Pedri - and beyond that, he'll be keen on taking home a gold medal.



Pedri, Spain, FC Barcelona

After a series of stellar performances in Euro 2020, Pedri will be keen on stealing the show and further boosting his reputation at the Olympics.

At just 18 years old, Pedri has cemented himself as a mainstay in Spain's squad and it's easy to see why.

He possesses Iniesta-esque playmaking abilities as he's able to distribute the ball with ease across any area of the pitch, whilst also tormenting his opponents with his solid dribbling skills.

His prowess in pressing and cutting the opponent's passing lanes are also incredibly good for a player his age.

He's definitely one to watch during the Olympics.



Ramadan Sobhi, Egypt, Pyramids

It's worth noting that Sobhi used to ply his trade in the Premier League - now he features in Egypt's first division whilst still only 24 years old.

This is due in large part to his failed stints with Stoke City and Huddersfield spanning from 2016 to 2020.

Going into the Olympics, Ramadan Sobhi will be looking to utilize the competition as a platform to get his talent noticed across Europe's top five leagues again - hence, you can expect to see some brilliant individual displays from him.



Takefusa Kubo, Japan, Real Madrid

The host nation, Japan has a fairly solid football team on their hands this year with 20-year old Takefusa Kubo possibly being their most impactful player.

The Real Madrid man is a pacy forward who boasts the ability to jolt past players with ease.

He also boasts mesmerising ball control, which he'll be keen on showing throughout the course of the Olympics.

Japan boss, Hajime Moriyasu is sure to grant Kubo the freedom to roam across various positions on the pitch in a bid to express himself and in turn, wreak havoc on Japan's opponents.




Gabriel Martinelli, Brazil, Arsenal

Dubbed a generational talent by Arsenal fans, Gabriel Martinelli is set to become the youngest Brazilian football player to be featured in the First Team Squad at the 2020 Olympics.

The youngster had tons of dazzling performances for Arsenal last year before picking up an ankle injury that stopped him in his tracks.

Now that he's fully recovered, he'll be looking to light up the Olympics with his Brazilian flair and eye for goal.



Amad Diallo, Ivory Coast, Manchester United

The Olympics represents a great opportunity for Amad Diallo to introduce himself to the world.

Having just recently signed for Manchester United, the club's supporters are keen to see what he's capable of and the Olympics will offer him the perfect platform to give United fans a glimpse of his abilities before the 2021/2022 season begins.

Diallo is incredibly unpredictable in the attacking third. He's adept at using both feet, hence he's able to launch attacks from multiple directions which makes him incredibly dangerous in and around the 18-yard-area.

He'll definitely be worth watching throughout the competition.



Benjamin Henrichs, Germany, RB Leipzig

Benjamin Henrichs was a key member of the German squad that lifted the FIFA Confederations Cup in 2017.

Henrichs is ordinarily a right-back, but he has the ability to feature anywhere across the backline thanks to his incredible defensive awareness.

Unlike most full-backs these days, Henrichs isn't particularly attack-minded. He runs into his opponent's half from time to time, but opts to sit in his team's own half for the majority of a game in order to provide his team with elite defensive cover.

It'll be interesting to watch how a traditional full-back like Henrichs fares in a tournament that is poised to be filled with tons of flair from the youngsters involved.


Need a VPN? Or seeking to switch? Then support Tribal Football by clicking here to sign up with our official partners NordVPN. Not only will you receive the best VPN experience, but also great discounts by signing up via Tribal Football. Thanks for your support!

Video of the day:

Phillip Ekuwem
About the author

Phillip Ekuwem

Have your say
×

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

  1. Go Ad-Free
  2. Faster site experience
  3. Support great writing
  4. Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free
×

Subscribe and go ad-free

For only $10 a year

Subscribe now
Launch Offer: 2 months free