Name: Zakaria Bakkali
Who is he?
Born in Liege as recently as 1996, the Belgian of Moroccan descent started out with two hometown teams. First he was at RFC de Liege until the age of 9 before joining the academy of one of Belgium’s major clubs Standard de Liege.
By the age of 12 he had moved country to link up with the youth academy of Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven.
Bakkali made his PSV debut at the very end of last month in a Champions League qualifier against Belgium club Zulte-Waregem and impressed straight away in a very young team. The following week, the 17-year-old scored in the second leg.
He followed that up by claiming a record with a hat-trick in the Dutch league against NEC Nijmegen last weekend. That feat means he has become the youngest ever player to score a hat-trick in Eredivisie history.
Due to the explosive start to his career, Bakkali was called up for Belgium’s friendly with France. However he missed the game after suffering a thigh strain in training.
He has already represented his country at youth level.
Bakkali possesses excellent technique and ball control, with an array of tricks and dribbles to call upon – all at lightning speed.
The pacy right winger has already shown that he has an eye for goal and an ability to strike with either foot.
We are only two weeks into Bakkali’s senior career but the signs of thus far are very impressive. Staying at PSV will be important for the next few seasons with the opportunity to grow within a young and exciting team.
Arsenal are believed to be interested in purchasing the youngster who has claimed that he has already turned down Manchester City.
With his call up to the Belgium squad, there is a real possibility that he might make the World Cup, assuming the Red Devils seasl qualification.