Musa Barrow up for Golden Boy award

Gambia youngster Musa Barrow has been included on the 100-strong longlist for the 2018 Golden Boy award run by Italian publication Tuttosport and awarded by European journalists to the best footballer under the age of 21 playing in Europe.
 
The 19-year-old, who is subject to transfer interest from Inter Milan, Borussia Dortmund, Juventus, Chelsea, Lazio and others, will have to contest for the award with Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Reiss Nelson (Arsenal), Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea), Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) and Matthijs De Ligt (Ajax).
 
The former Hawks FC striker was promoted to the Atalanta first-team in February having found the net 23 times in just 18 games for the Primavera youth side and scored three goals in 11 Serie A appearances.
 
Barrow plays on the left wing but can also play as a central striker. He has a lethal combination of pace, power, skill and finishing and he has shown he can score goals when playing top level football. 
 
Barrow is the only Gambian player who has been included on the list of candidates for the 16th Golden Boy award.
 
Paris Saint-Germain forward Mbappe is the clear front-runner to become the first player to retain the award he won in 2017, having scored three goals on France's run to the 2018 World Cup quarterfinals and produced a spectacular performance to eliminate Lionel Messi's Argentina in a seven-goal thriller in Kazan on Saturday.
 
Other notable names on the long list are Zinedine Zidane's son Luca, who plays for Real Madrid, as well as Ajax defender Matthijs De Ligt and new Roma signing Justin Kluivert.
 
The Golden Boy award has been handed out annually since 2003, when Rafael van der Vaart claimed the inaugural prize. Winners since have included Messi, Cesc Fabregas, Sergio Aguero, Paul Pogba and Isco. Wayne Rooney and Raheem Sterling are the only Englishmen to receive the gong.
 
The award, which was established by Turin-based sports daily Tuttosport, recognizes the best U21 players in Europe over the course of a calendar year.
 
It includes votes from leading newspapers, namely Bild (Germany), Blick (Switzerland), A Bola (Portugal), L’Équipe (France), France Football (France) and Marca (Spain).
 
Other top newspapers in the vote are Mundo Deportivo (Spain), Ta Nea (Greece), Sport Express (Russia), De Telegraaf (Netherlands), and The Times (United Kingdom).
 
All players on the 100-man list were born after January 1 1998.