Top 5 Most Overrated Young Players in Football History

There are players who are constantly overrated, and there are players who are overrated for a split second in their careers. This article will be about the latter, mainly because there is no need to discuss the likes of Wayne Rooney, Mario Balotelli, etc. Players on this list were highly touted at one point in their career and were expected to grow into world-class players like Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi. Yet, for one reason or another, these players never lived up to their expectations and remain to this day as cautionary tales for those who hype young players too much.

Here are the top five most overrated young players in recent football history:

You know that feeling when you have a crush on somebody and you just can’t stop thinking about them? You’re constantly trying to find things you have in common with them, the ways you complement each other, your potential as a couple; you’re even willing to overlook their flaws, or at least make excuses for them.

Well, football fans do the same thing for their favorite players. They conveniently forget that they might not be all that great, and will do anything to prove how much better they are than everybody else. We’re talking about overrated young players who were considered to be “the next big thing” but ended up doing nothing of note.

Here’s our list of the top 5 most overrated young players in football history.

A few days ago we wrote an article about the Top 5 Most Underrated Young Players in Football History. It was a fun article to write, and it got a great response from you guys. Now it’s time to balance things out a bit and write about five players who were considered talented youngsters, but who never really lived up to expectations.

We’ve all seen the videos on Youtube of young kids playing amazing football and scoring amazing goals. You get excited, think ‘this kid could be the next Messi or Ronaldo’, but then they fail to improve, never make it as a pro, or just flop at the highest level when they finally do get their shot.

So let’s take a look at some of these guys now:

Football, perhaps more than any other sport, is a sport obsessed with youth. There have been countless young players who have been touted as the new big thing, only to turn out to be over-hyped and disappointing. We take a look at five of the most overrated young players in football history.

1. Freddy Adu – Once described as “the next Pele”, Adu was signed by DC United as a 14 year old, becoming the youngest player ever in Major League Soccer. Yet Adu failed to live up to expectations and never made his way out of the American league system, bouncing around various clubs before ending up in Finland at age 28.

2. Freddy Shevchenko – Ukrainian striker Shevchenko was signed by AC Milan as a 19 year old after impressing for Dynamo Kyiv. He was tipped to be one of the world’s best strikers but despite scoring 127 goals in 208 appearances for Milan it was thought that he was overrated due to his lack of pace and tendency to go missing in big games.

3. Jack Rodwell – English midfielder Rodwell was touted as a potential star for both club and country when he broke into the Everton first team at age 18 but injuries prevented him from showing his

The sport of football is full of skill, passion, dedication and hard work. It is a team sport that requires a great deal of synchronization between the players. However, it also demands individual talent, and an individual has to perform well for the team to do so.

Over the years we have seen many young talents that have impressed us with their skills and talent. However, there also have been some others who were overrated due to one or two good performances in their youth. Some of them never actually made it to the top and are long forgotten now. Here is a list of 5 players who were overrated when they were young:

1) Paul Pogba

2) Jack Wilshere

3) Federico Macheda

4) Omar Juan

5) Wayne Rooney

Abel Xavier

A talented full-back, who was once compared to Bobby Moore, Abel Xavier is often forgotten about due to his lack of success at clubs such as Liverpool and Everton.

Alexandre Pato

The Brazilian is only 24, but has already had a chequered career. Despite that he still continues to be linked with the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United.

Mark Viduka

While Viduka showed what he was capable of at Leeds United and Middlesbrough, he never quite fulfilled his potential. He should have scored more goals than he did.

Emmanuel Petit

Petit was a fine midfield player who won the World Cup and European Championship with France. However, while he was solid, there were others during his career who were better in the same position.

Mateja Kezman

Another underwhelming striker, Kezman scored goals for fun in Holland with PSV Eindhoven. However, after moving to Chelsea – where people expected him to continue scoring – he failed to make any impression whatsoever.

For all the talk about finding and developing young players, the fact is that youth alone does not make a player great. Some of the best players in history were young when they first broke through, but many more have been hyped as future superstars only to disappoint with their lack of development or maturity.

Every year we see new prospects emerge out of nowhere, only to disappear just as quickly. But some players become household names long before they are truly ready to be playing at a high level.

In this slideshow I will take a look at five players who were overhyped far too early in their careers.

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