Sat 03 July 2021 | 13:30

The Next Generation of Turkish Football: The Pursuit of a Breakthrough

In the following article from SportMob, we will have a look at the Next Generation of Turkish football and analyze The 10 most exciting talents in Turkish football.

Football is an international sport played by more than 250 million people all over the world today. More than 200 countries now have a football team. It is a sport that is as enjoyable to play as it is to watch football, which is followed with interest by the whole world and attracts attention with its fanatical fans in major league matches. Football history in Turkey dates back to old times. The first amateur football team in Turkey was founded in Izmir.

Turkey's first professional football team is


, which was founded in 1905, and then Fenerbahce Sports Club, which was founded in 1907 as the second. Besiktas, on the other hand, was founded in 1903 but started its sports activities in 1910. We have seen many stars like Metin Oktay, Tanju Colak, Can Bartu, and Sergen Yalcin in Turkish football, but many of us are curious to know more about

the next generation of Turkish football


Manager Senol Gunes is building a national team full of young stars. The players among the best young Turkish footballers are ready to prove themselves as jewels. Altay Bayindir, Merih Demiral, Caglar Soyuncu and Ozan Kabak are young stars ready to turn into world-class players. But these are names that are already dominating headlines on the next generation of Turkish wonderkids. So, as you may guess, we intend to write an article about next generation 2021 - Turkey's best young talent and see which Turkish football players write their names in football history, so for this reason, we have searched for you the 10 most exciting talents in Turkish football.

The 10 most exciting talents in Turkish football

Football is changing; its future is upon us. Today investing in young people and above all "building them at home" must be the next step in Turkish football. For this reason, it becomes essential today to look at what can be done tomorrow and, in particular, to be able to compose "a generation Z" of players able to face the next challenges of the change implemented.

The players mentioned as

the best young Turkish footballers

are the stars of their team. If you are interested in the list of next generation 2021 - Turkey's best young talent, keep reading.

10. Irfan Can Kahveci

Irfan Can Kahveci was born on July 15, 1995, in Corum Bayat District on his father's side, and originally from Yozgat on his mother's side. Irfan Can Kahveci, who started football in Genclerbirligi then continued with Hacettepe and was included in the Genclerbirligi main squad in the 2014-2015 season, made himself known to football in


. He was transferred to Fenerbahce for €7m + Tolga Cigerci and Deniz Turci.

Also, he has worn the Turkey U-17 National Team 7 times, the U-18 jersey 4 times, the U-20 jersey 3 times, and the U-21 jersey 12 times. He plays in the middle of the midfield and, in fact, is No.10 player. For the first time in 2016, he was invited to the Turkish National Team for a friendly match with the Russian National Team. He was the only player who scored for Turkey in Euro 2020 as they had a disastrous campaign in the tournament. He is a future star in

the next generation of Turkish football


9. Halil Dervisoglu

He was in the EURO 2020 squad of the Turkish National Team and was appreciated for his performance. Halil Dervisoglu, one of the most prominent names in the squad, became the focus of football fans. So, who is this starlet? Halil Dervisoglu was born in Rotterdam, Netherlands, on December 8, 1999, and grew up in the Netherlands. He plays for


, one of the Premier League teams.

He joined Sparta Rotterdam academy at the age of 10 and entered the club's reserve team early in the 2017-18 season. After scoring 21 goals in 26 appearances, his contract was extended in May 2018, and he made his debut in the squad. In August 2019, he signed a preliminary contract with Brentford. He made 19 appearances and scored five goals in the first half of the 2019-20 season, leaving the club with 58 appearances and 16 goals while in the first-team squad.

In the first month of the 2020-21 season, he was loaned to Twente for the remainder of the season. After falling far behind Marcus Forss and new signing Ivan Toney, he was recalled and scored his first goal for the club in his opening match in a 2-1 FA Cup third-round win against Middlesbrough. Two weeks after joining the team, he was loaned to Galatasaray until the 2020-21 season.

After playing 10 matches and failing to score, his contract was terminated, and the situation made him join Galatasaray. He scored his first goal for Galatasaray against Genclerbirligi. After wearing the Turkey U-19, U-21, he was invited to Euro 2020 squad by Senol Gunes. He played his first international match against


on May 27, 2021, and scored his first national team goal. Definitely, he is one of the stars of the next generation of Turkish wonderkids.

8. Cengiz Under

Cengiz Under was born on 14 July 1997 in Sindıigi. He started his football career at the Belediyespor summer football school in Balikesir's Sindıigi district. He was offered to Bucaspor by his trainers, which gave great importance to Cengiz's road to the world's top. After playing in Bucaspor academy between 2007-2013, he was transferred to Altinordu academy. Cengiz, who made his debut against Menemen Belediyespor in the Turkish Cup, started against


on December 23, 2014, at Fenerbahce Stadium.

Cengiz, who caught the eyes in this match, played his first league match against Manisaspor at the end of the following week. In the transfer period of the 2016-2017 season, he was transferred to Istanbul Basaksehir for €700k. He played his first official match for Istanbul Basaksehir against HNK Rijeka and stayed on the field for 14 minutes. Then was transferred to AS Roma for €15m.

Cengiz Under, who also plays for the Turkish National Team, continues to be appreciated for his performance in the matches he played with the Roma jersey. Cengiz Under, one of the next generation of Turkish football stars, participated in Euro 2020, and despite having a disaster tournament, he made his presence known. Cengiz Under is considered as one of the stars of

the next generation of Turkish wonderkids


7. Merih Demiral

Born in 1998, Merih Demiral is a Turkish footballer who plays as a central defender. He combines technical skills with great physical power, which, combined with a strong sense of position, allows him to preside over the penalty area by often taking a position on the front opponents.

Demiral joined Juventus from Sassuolo in 2019 after experiences in Turkey and Portugal. He has played 14 games in Italy, 1260 minutes played, with 2 goals scored, 66.7 successful tackles, 87% pass accuracy. Demiral is the youngest defender to have scored at least two goals in Serie A 2018-19 after Cristian Romero, and the youngest defender scored twice in the five major European leagues in the 2018/19 season after Ozan Kabak.

It does not end here as the Juventus defender headed 48 balls in Serie A 2018/19, more than any other Sassuolo player, and as a fact, he is the first Turkish defender to have scored in the league. Merih Demiral was one of the stars of Turkey in Euro 2020, but an own goal and some unfortunate mistakes ruined his dreams. However, it seems this experience was part of his growth plan, and there is no doubt Demiral will be a key part of the next generation of Turkish football. Keep an eye on Turkey's largest asset in the best young Turkish footballers.

6. Orkun Kokcu

Orkun Kokcu was born on December 29, 2000, in Haarlem, Netherlands. He is a Turkish national football player who grew up in the Netherlands, playing in the midfield position. He plays for Feyenoord, one of the Eredivisie teams.

Orkun Kokcu

joined Feyenoord youth academy in 2014 . On September 17, 2018, he made his debut for Feyenoord at the age of 17 and scored Feyenoord's second goal in the first round of the KNVB Cup; in the match, they won 4-0 against VV Gemert.

He made his Eredivisie debut on 9 December 2018 against Emmen and contributed to the score by scoring a goal and assisting after entering the game. On April 10, 2019, he extended his contract with Feyenoord until 2023. He played for the Netherlands U-17, U-18, and U-19 national teams. In 2019, Kokcu announced that he wants to play for Turkey. 

In 2019, he wore the jersey of the Turkey U-21 team for the first time in the 2021 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying match, where they lost 3-2 to the England U-21 team. In 2020, he was called up to the Turkey national football team.

Orkun Kokcu’s family is from the Suvermez village of Emirdag district of Afyonkarahisar province. He is the brother of professional football player Ozan Kokcu, who plays in Sabah FC in the Azerbaijan league and plays for the Azerbaijan national team. There are some rumors about his possible transfer to AC Milan. In addition to that, many critics consider Kokcu a key part of

next generation 2021 - Turkey's best young talent

. Kokcu can already claim to be one of the stars of the next generation of Turkish wonderkids.

5. Naci Unuvar

Here is a name that you will hear more about in the future. In the last 16 rounds of the Netherlands KNVB Cup, Ajax defeated Spakenburg 7-0 at home, and in that game, Naci Unuvar made his mark in the next round. The 16-year-old entered the game in the 75th minute, making himself the second-youngest player in Ajax history to score a goal with a penalty kick in the 86th minute.

Naci Unuvar also became the second-youngest player in Ajax history to take part in an official match. Ajax hosted Spakenburg in the last 16 of the Dutch KNVB Cup. Ajax defeated their opponent 7-0 and became the team that made its name in the next round. While Naci Unuvar was taking the penalty, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, the first penalty shooter of the team, wanted the young player to take the shot. The young star can use both feet very well. He also has the ability to play in the ten positions in the midfield.

He has played for the


U-15 national team 6 times so far. Naci Unuvar, who transferred from OFC Zaandan academy to Ajax, is originally from Konya on his father's side. Many believe he will choose to play for Turkey soon, so everyone considers him one of the next generation of Turkish football. Without a doubt, Zaniolo has a special in the list of

the 10 most exciting talents in Turkish football


4. Caglar Soyuncu

Caglar Soyuncu

is a Turkish national football player who plays as a defender. He plays for Leicester City, one of the Premier League teams. Soyuncu started his football career in Menemen Belediyespor. The football player, who played as a striker during his time here, was transferred to this team at the request of Bucaspor's president. He scored two penalty kicks, one in during the game and one in the penalty shootouts.

Many people would point at Soyuncu’s toughness, which is relatively high to elite footballer individuals. Though his power, stout frame is complemented by a well-honed technique as well as an eye for a decent pass. It seems the ball has a magnetism towards Soyuncu in the penalty box. When Harry Maguire departed for Manchester United, many believed it is over for Leicester as no one could fill the gap.

Still, the former Freiburg man found himself nominated as an even better player than Maguire. Following the departure of Maguire for a reported club-record sale, Soyuncu has stepped up and put in some terrific performances. The player’s partnership at the heart of the defense with the experienced Evans has been vital. The ex-West Bromwich Albion ace has helped Soyuncu develop his game into a formed, passionate defender. Leicester have conceded the third-least league goals this term.

Though it is Soyuncu’s perfect coolness that has surprised many: controlling the ball with quickness, deftly intercepting, making movements forward in possession, combine the aforementioned points to the fact that he is as strong as a bull and we are talking about a world-class defender.

Defensively, Soyuncu is already performing well, but he should focus on delivering greater support to the offensive play, particularly when he has space and the time to pick a pass. A ball over the top to the runner or perhaps passing to the opposite wing with three players' insight can always be the better option instead of playing it safe and passing back to the goalkeeper. Caglar Soyuncu is a top-quality player in the Premier League and



However, he needs to develop his support to the offensive build-up play and offer a greater goal threat from attacking set-pieces. This would really be the icing on the cake and would move him into the game's upper echelons. Suppose Soyuncu can maintain this high level of performance. It won’t be easy for Leicester City to keep one of

the next generation of Turkish football

stars in their squad.

3. Ozan Kabak

If we are talking about the next generation of Turkish football, Ozan Kabak should be there. Ozan Muhammed Kabak, March 25, 2000; Turkish national football player, born in Cankaya, Ankara, played center-back. Kabak started his football career by joining Galatasaray Youth Academy in 2011. He made his professional debut in the Super Lig match against Yeni Malatyaspor on 12 May 2018. With his successful performance in the academy, he joined Stuttgart.

He played his first official game with Stuttgart in the away game against Bayern Munich in the 19th week of the Bundesliga. He scored his first goal in league with Stuttgart in the match against Hannover.

Ozan Kabak

scored the 2nd and 3rd goals of the match in Stuttgart, who won the match 5-1 at home. These goals contributed in terms of score, and his first two hits in the league for his team resulted in a goal. Ozan Kabak, whose team was relegated to the Bundesliga II in the 2018-19 season, was transferred to Schalke 04, one of the famous Bundesliga teams.

Starting the season badly, Ozan's team lost 8-0 to Bayern in the first league match, and Ozan made a penalty in the match. In the second week, while losing 3-1 to Werder Bremen, Ozan was dismissed in the 84th minute by receiving a red card for spitting on his opponent and giving a penalty.

After the match, Ozan apologized to Ludwig Augustinsson, saying he didn't do it on purpose. DFB banned Ozan Kabak from 5 matches and fined him. After this adventure, Ozan joined Liverpool on a season-long loan with a buyout option.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said of Ozan: "He is a great talent, and we look forward to working with him. He has a solid personality. He went abroad at a very young age. He could have played for any team in Turkey." Ozan Kabak played in the Turkey U-17 national football team at the 2017 European Championship held in Croatia. In addition, the football player was shown as one of the 10 most striking players of the tournament by UEFA.

Also, Senol Gunes invited Ozan to the national team squad, which was announced before Albania and Moldova matches. He played for the Turkey main team for the first time against Andorra on 17 November 2019. Ozan was also part of Turkey's team in Euro 2020, as this proves why he is on the list of next generation 2021 - Turkey's best young talent.

2. Altay Bayindir

Altay Bayindir

is one of the well-known young football players. He is one of the most interesting football players of Turkish football. Altay Bayindir, one of the most successful Turkish football players with his successful performance, is originally from Bursa.

Altay Bayindir started his football career in Bursa, the city where he was born and grew up. He wore the youth jersey of Bursaspor. In 2011-2012, he played in the Arabayatagispor academy. He played for Bursa Yolspor between 2012 and 2013. Between 2013 and 2016, he played in the academy of MKE Ankaragucu. In 2019, he managed to attract the attention of big clubs with his very successful performance and eventually won the right to play in Fenerbahce.

He wore the Turkey U-17 kit between 2014 and 2017. He also played for the Turkey U-19 team between 2017 and 2018. He played in the Turkey U-20 team in 2018, and between 2018 and 2020, he wore the Turkish U-21 national team kit. As of 2021, he plays for the Turkish National Team as one of the crucial members of the best young Turkish footballers.

He used to play football with his brother in Bursa. While his older brother was a midfielder, Altay Bayindir played as a defender. After a short time, Altay Bayindir started goalkeeping. Altay Bayindir, who became interested in goalkeeping because of his goalkeeper teammate, who did not come to training one day, is one of the talented and young goalkeepers in Europe.

Altay participated in Euro 2020 as a reserve goalkeeper but did not make it into the first XI. However, it seems Altay has a great future ahead of him. According to many critics, he has all the potential to make it into the list of

the next generation of Turkish football


1. Yusuf Yazici

Yusuf Yazici was born on January 29, 1997 in Trabzon. Yusuf Yazici is from Trabzon. He is 23 years old. Yusuf Yazici uses his left foot. His position is No.10 midfielder. He currently plays in the Ligue 1 for Lille. He started his football career in 2008 at Trabzonspor academy. He was promoted to the main team by signing a professional contract. Landed in the summer of 2019 from Trabzonspor with the label of new Turkish football star, Yusuf Yazici was slow to shine as all blame was on the adaptation with French football. He also had a terrible injury, a rupture of the cruciate ligaments.

“I knew I was going to go through a period of adjustment. And that I had to improve myself in certain areas, to become more resistant, more powerful. When I said to myself: "it's good, my adjustment period is over," I hurt myself. There, I stayed away from the matches, from my teammates. I suffered. I wanted to come back stronger. And today, I receive all the fruit of the work. I became a better player because I worked a lot,” he explained.

Yusuf Yazici

also scored an incredible hat-trick against AC Milan in the UEFA Europe League in 2020/2021." When you score a hat-trick in a game like this, it's because you are excellent. But he also bowed to the team needs in the defensive part. Yusuf has a different profile from all the players.

Yusuf's Europa League must not be appropriated because there is also the league. But I love to see his smile at parties like that. He likes to be decisive. It is important. If he repeats this kind of performance and remains at the service of the team, we will give it back to him, "said Christophe Galtier.

While he speaks French better and better, he also understands it and can interact with his teammates in English. Yusuf Yazici, who plays for Lille, has a history of playing for the Turkey U-19 national team in 2016. Yusuf Yazici also has played for the national team 3 times. Yusuf Yazici entered the match for the first time in 2017, replacing Oguzhan Ozyakup in the 74th minute during the Kosovo match during the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches, wearing the national team kit. No one would be surprised if we set him in the first place as a pillar of the 10 most exciting talents in Turkish football.

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source: SportMob

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