Jamal Musiala, Tanguy Nianzou, and Alex Timossi Andersson were all given the nod to be in contention for the prestigious award. The official description of the award (per Wikipedia):
The Golden Boy is an award that is given by sports journalists to a young footballer playing in Europe perceived to have been the most impressive during a calendar year (two halves to two separate seasons).
Musiala and Nianzou spent last season with Bayern Munich’s senior team, while Andersson spent the first half of last season on loan in Sweden with Helsingborgs IF before then accepting a loan to Austrian 2.Liga side Klagenfurt for the second half.
The inclusion of Musiala is not surprising at all, while Nianzou is a bit shocking considering he was injured for most of the season. Andersson, meanwhile, is a somewhat “out of nowhere” nominee.
Previous winners include:
- 2020: Erling Haaland, Forward, Borussia Dortmund
- 2019: João Félix, Forward, Benfica/Atletico Madrid
- 2018: Matthijs de Ligt, Defender, Ajax
- 2017: Kylian Mbappe, Forward, AS Monaco/Paris Saint-Germain
- 2016: Renato Sanches, Midfielder, Benfica/Bayern Munich
- 2015: Anthony Martial, Forward, AS Monaco/Manchester United
- 2014: Raheem Sterling, Forward, Liverpool
- 2013: Paul Pogba, Midfielder, Juventus
- 2012: Isco, Midfielder, Malaga
- 2011: Mario Götze, Midfielder, Borussia Dortmund
- 2010: Mario Balotelli, Forward, Inter Milan/Manchester City
- 2009: Alexandre Pato, Forward, AC Milan
- 2008: Anderson, Midfielder, Manchester United
- 2007: Sergio Aguero, Forward, Atletico Madrid
- 2006: Cesc Fabregas, Midfielder, Arsenal
- 2005: Lionel Messi, Forward, FC Barcelona
- 2004: Wayne Rooney, Forward, Everton/Manchester United
- 2003: Rafael van der Vaart, Midfielder, Ajax