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France's Kylian Mbappe Out of Contention for 2018 Golden Boy Award

Among the nominees for the prestigious award are Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Justin Kluivert (AS Roma), Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax), Patrick Cutrone (AC Milan) and Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid). The winner will be named on December 17th.

News18 Sports

Updated:November 22, 2018, 12:42 PM IST
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France's Kylian Mbappe Out of Contention for 2018 Golden Boy Award
France's Kylian Mbappe celebrates with the trophy after winning the World Cup. (REUTERS)
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Teenage sensation and a World Cup winner with France, Kylian Mbappe is out of contention for the 2018 Golden Boy Award after having won it last year.

Among the nominees for the prestigious award are Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Justin Kluivert (AS Roma), Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax), Patrick Cutrone (AC Milan) and Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid). The winner will be named on December 17th.

Organised by the Italian newspaper Tuttosport and awarded to Europe’s most impressive player under the age of 21, the Golden Boy award was founded in 2003 and relates to performances across a calendar year not a season, with the winner decided by a panel of 30 journalists.

First won by the Dutch midfielder Rafael van der Vaart in 2003, no player has managed to win the award twice.

"The philosophy is to launch one new face each year," Massimo Franchi, who oversees the award, told ESPN FC.

"This started with Messi in 2005 -- we couldn't just vote Messi each year, even if he was still young enough for the Golden Boy.

While there is no rule preventing a player winning the award twice, Mbappe will not be considered as he is expected to be in the running for the Ballon D’Or.

"It is always an important prize, but he [Mbappe] is out of the running to win this. One month after he won the Golden Boy last year, he came seventh for the Ballon d'Or and he'd only won a Ligue 1 with Monaco.

"Now he's won the World Cup, starred for Paris Saint-Germain and is worthy of winning the Ballon d'Or, so there is no need for him to go back and win the Golden Boy again. That's why Messi and Rooney didn't get it a second time either.

"We inserted him in the [initial list of] candidates because he is still in the right age group, and also because we have an online vote.

"It's then up to the jury and there is no rule which says he can't [win again], but it's like a university graduate who is then asked to go back to college for another exam. He's moved to the next level."

Bayern Munich's Renato Sanches took the prize in 2016, while Anthony Martial was the 2015 winner. Raheem Sterling, Paul Pogba, Isco, Mario Gotze and Mario Balotelli are other previous winners.
| Edited by: Abhimanyu Sen
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