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Mbappe, Haaland, Felix: Who won the Golden Boy award before Barcelona star Gavi?

GiveMeSport Football

The Golden Boy gong is a prestigious award which highlights the incredible individual performance of a young footballer during the previous 12 months.

2022 saw Barcelona prodigy Gavi win the award after becoming Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer at 17 years and 304 days, and making himself a mainstay of Xavi’s first-team squad.

But who has claimed the honour previously? GiveMeSport looks at the prior victors of the Golden Boy award…

Who won the Golden Boy award before Gavi?

2021- Pedri- Barcelona

Pedri of FC Barcelona looks on wearing the modified OVO owl logo on the front of the FC Barcelona shirt, which celebrates Canadian musician Drake...https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/pedri-of-fc-barcelona-looks-on-wearing-the-modified-ovo-owl-news-photo/1433908239

The 2021 Golden Boy award was awarded to 18-year-old FC Barcelona starlet Pedri due to an incredible calendar year.

Pedri had a packed 2021 after finishing second in the Olympics, receiving a silver medal and being a regular feature in the FC Barcelona starting XI, earning him a place in the Spanish national team side that went to Euro 2021.

The young central midfielder captivated fans with his Euro 2021 performances, resulting in him earning a spot in the Euro 2021 team of the tournament.

Pedri beat England and Borussia Dortmund wonderkid Jude Bellingham to the award.

Read more: Champions League 2022/23: Fixtures, Draw, Dates, Schedule, Final, Teams and Everything We Know So Far

2020- Erling Haaland- Borussia Dortmund

Erling Haaland of Dortmund gestures during the Bundesliga match between Borussia Dortmund and Hertha BSC at Signal Iduna Park on May 14, 2022 in...https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/erling-haaland-of-dortmund-gestures-during-the-bundesliga-news-photo/1397254120

One of the biggest names in football, Erling Haaland’s rise to the top was quick and felt immediately after impressive spells at FC Red Bull Salzburg and Borussia Dortmund before securing a move to Manchester City.

However, 2020 saw Erling Haaland pick up his first huge individual award after scoring 23 goals in the Bundesliga in 2020.

Haaland’s goal-scoring record is what put him in the pole position to be named European Golden Boy.

2019- Joao Felix- Atletico Madrid and Benfica

Joao Felix of Atletico de Madrid controls the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group A stage match between Atletico Madrid and FC Bayern...https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/joao-felix-of-atletico-de-madrid-controls-the-ball-during-news-photo/1289006699

The exciting Portuguese forward found himself the recipient of the 2019 award after an impressive year at SL Benfica and Atletico Madrid.

The 2018/19 Liga NOS campaign saw Joao Felix become a regular feature in the Benfica side, playing 26 league games and playing six UEFA Europa League matches.

He even bagged an impressive hattrick during the first leg of the UEFA Europa League quarter-finals against Bundesliga side Eintracht Frankfurt.

2018 – Matthijs De Ligt – Ajax

Matthijs de Ligt of Ajax celebrates winning the Dutch Toto KNVB Cup Final between Willem II and Ajax at De Kuip on May 05, 2019 in Rotterdam,...https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/matthijs-de-ligt-of-ajax-celebrates-winning-the-dutch-toto-news-photo/1147142542

2018 was the year that Ajax shocked the world in the UEFA Champions League under the management of Erik Ten Haag. The 2018 UCL campaign was the journey that saw a variety of Ajax players turn into superstars.

However, the leadership of young captain Matthijs De Ligt was rewarded, and he was the 2018 recipient of the European Golden Boy award.

Ajax reached the semi-finals of the 2018 UEFA Champions League, defeating the likes of Juventus and Real Madrid, with De Ligt scoring the crucial goal that knocked out Juventus and Cristiano Ronaldo from the competition.

2017- Kylian Mbappe – AS Monaco and Paris St Germain

Kylian Mbappe of PSG during the UEFA Champions League group B match between Paris Saint-Germain and Celtic FC at Parc des Princes on November 22,...https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/kylian-mbappe-of-psg-during-the-uefa-champions-league-group-news-photo/877605094

After being called up from the academy to the first team in the 2015/16 season, the following year saw Kylian Mbappe put world football on…

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