The youngest-ever player to score on his first Champions League start, a Graham Potter favourite and the Brazilian winger keen to make a name for himself at Arsenal… 10 teenagers looking to impress in the Carabao Cup this week
- The Carabao Cup third round fixtures are set to take place over the coming days
- Premier League clubs often use the early rounds as a chance to play youngsters
- Man City’s Rico Lewis may play and Arsenal’s Marquinhos will be keen to impress
- Sportsmail takes a look at 10 teenagers aiming to make an impression this week
The much-maligned Carabao Cup is back. Often used by managers of top Premier League clubs as an example of why the schedule is too intense, the third round of the competition will be shoe-horned into the schedule this week.
The secondary domestic cup competition in English football may have much less gravitas than other competitions, but it is never short on drama and provides coaches with the chance to assess young talents and fringe players.
This was demonstrated by last year’s pulsating final between Liverpool and Chelsea, which was only ended when Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga blazed the 22nd penalty of a previously faultless shootout over the bar.
The Carabao Cup third round fixtures will take place on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
Liverpool won last year’s competition after beating Chelsea on penalties at Wembley
With the extremely intense schedule this season taking its toll on several teams in the form of injuries, this year will be no different.
In that case, ahead of the Carabao Cup round three ties taking place, Sportsmail takes a look at the teenagers from Premier League clubs that are looking to impress.
Rico Lewis – Man City
The 17-year-old right-back has looked bright whenever he has been afforded opportunities by Pep Guardiola this year – impressing in four brief substitute appearances before he was then handed his first start for the club against Sevilla.
Lewis, who captained the City under-18s to the Premier League 2 title last season, shone against the LaLiga strugglers as he became the youngest player of all-time to score on his first Champions League start.
With Joao Cancelo suspended and Kyle Walker still recovering from injury, the rising star will hope to feature against Chelsea on Wednesday in what will be his toughest test yet.
Rico Lewis starred on his first start for Man City in the Champions League against Sevilla
Reece Welch – Everton
The young centre-back made his debut for the Toffees as a late substitute in an FA Cup win over Boreham Wood last season.
Welch was regularly involved in Frank Lampard’s matchday squads during their remarkable survival and made his first start for the club in their round two victory over Fleetwood Town back in August.
Lampard may look to give the England under-20 international further minutes after the Everton boss name-checked Welch when referencing youngsters who could be included for their clash with Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium on Tuesday.
Young Everton defender Reece Welch will hope to be rewarded with more first-team minutes
Marquinhos – Arsenal
Arsenal signed the highly-rated Brazilian winger in the summer and Wednesday’s game with Brighton provides the former Sao Paulo prospect with the chance of more action as Mikel Arteta looks to manage his relatively small squad.
Marquinhos impressed on his debut in the Europa League against FC Zurich in September, laying on a goal and an assist.
However, he struggled in the Gunners’ following game against Bodo/Glimt and has made just two substitute appearances since, playing just one minute in the Premier League all season – while he didn’t even make the bench for their 1-0 win over Chelsea on Sunday.
After a goal and an assist in a player of the match performance for the under-21s at the weekend, Marquinhos will be keen to remind Arteta and the Emirates faithful of his talent.
Marquinhos (L) has rarely featured for the Gunners since his summer move to the Emirates
Stefan Bajcetic – Liverpool
Bajcetic has been a regular feature on Liverpool’s bench so far this season after an impressive pre-season campaign where he caught the eye of Jurgen Klopp.
He has played just 43 minutes across four substitute appearances however, although he became the club’s youngest-ever player in the Champions League when he came on for the final seconds of their 2-1 win over Ajax in September at the age of 17.
A home game against League One side Derby provides the perfect opportunity for the Spain youth international to show why he is so highly-rated at Anfield.
Stefan Bajcetic became Liverpool’s youngest-ever player in the Champions League this season
Samuel Edozie – Southampton
Edozie arrived at St Mary’s in what seemed like a mass exodus of young talent from Manchester City to Southampton in the summer in a deal worth up to £10m.
The young winger seemed certain to break into Pep Guardiola’s side before injury last season and we have seen glimpses of his talent so far in the Premier League.
Edozie has made seven appearances – all as a substitute, and the Saints host League One high-flyers Sheffield Wednesday this week.
The 19-year-old, who played once for City, will be keen to properly announce himself at the south coast club.
Samuel Edozie is highly-rated but is yet to start for Southampton after his £10m move
Divin Mubama – West Ham
Mubama seems to be the next young star to come off West Ham’s heralded production line after the striker impressed on his debut in their Europa Conference League victory against FCSB last Thursday.
He thought he had scored a header in the 3-0 win, before the goal was heartbreakingly later given as an own goal.
Nevertheless, the 18-year-old impressed and he has 27 goals in 46 appearances for the Hammers’ under-18 side.
David Moyes may reward the prolific marksman at youth level with further minutes in Wednesday’s encounter with Blackburn Rovers.
Divin Mubama impressed on his first start for West Ham in the Europa League last Thursday
Carney Chukwuemeka – Chelsea
Perhaps the most high-profile name on the list, Chukwuemeka made the move to Stamford Bridge from Aston Villa for £20m in the summer.
He was highly-rated at Villa Park, making 13 appearances in all competitions and he has already featured in three substitute appearances so far this season – all under Graham Potter.
The Chelsea boss is seemingly a big fan of the midfielder, as he recently said: ‘ He’s a young player, but he’s got exciting attributes. We just need to help him reach his potential because his potential is exciting.’
A trip to the Etihad may be somewhat a baptism of fire for Chukwuemeka, but as the Blues continue to try and click under Potter, it could be the time for the former Brighton boss to turn to the 19-year-old.
Carney Chukwuemeka is still yet to start a game for Chelsea following his £20m transfer
Shola Shoretire – Man United
The 18-year-old promising striker has been in fine form this year, scoring five times in nine games for United’s under-21 side, with his performances earning Shoretire a place on the bench in last week’s games against Real Sociedad and Aston Villa.
He has already made five appearances for the first team after making his debut in 2021 and holds the record as the youngest player to ever appear in European competitions for the Red Devils.
Shoretire also counts Paul Scholes and Marcus Rashford as fellow previous winners of the Jimmy Murphy Young Player of the Year Award at the club.
With injury doubts over fellow attacking players such as Jadon Sancho and Antony – the former Man City, Newcastle and Sunderland academy star will hope to add to his first team appearances in Thursday’s clash with Aston Villa.
Young striker Shola Shoretire has made five senior appearances for Manchester United
Malcolm Ebiowei – Crystal Palace
Ebiowei was one of the numerous youngsters handed opportunities and developed by Wayne Rooney at Derby last year as the Rams faced severe financial troubles.
After making 16 appearances, he joined Palace upon the expiry of his contract and the winger has already featured in two Premier League games, while he also appeared in the Eagles’ second round victory over Oxford United.
As Patrick Vieira looks to juggle his many exciting attackers, Ebiowei, who endeared himself to Palace fans by scoring on his under-21 debut against arch-rivals Brighton, will hope to secure further first team minutes at Newcastle on Wednesday.
Malcolm Ebiowei starred for Derby last season before making the move to Crystal Palace
Calvin Ramsay – Liverpool
It’s been somewhat of a nightmare start for the Scottish teenager, who joined Liverpool in the summer from Aberdeen.
He has struggled with injury ever since arriving, and only made his debut in a cameo in last week’s clash with Napoli.
Ramsay was supposed to come in as Trent Alexander-Arnold’s understudy, but as the Englishman has struggled, veteran James Milner has had to fill in.
As Jurgen Klopp looks to rotate a squad that has looked tired at times this season, Wednesday’s clash with Derby provides a chance for the Scottish youth international to show why the Reds spent a fee that could reach £8m on him in the summer.
Calvin Ramsay has struggled with injury so far at Liverpool after joining from Aberdeen
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