Potential WC stars: Jadon Sancho, Diego Lainez, and more
Top English players to watch out for
(Compiled by Nick Miller)
Jadon Sancho, Borussia Dortmund, forward
Not too many 17-year-olds leave a club the size of Manchester City by their own choice, but Sancho is clearly a young man in a hurry, having departed for Borussia Dortmund this summer, with several other teams after him. The forward may have a chance to show he's worth the hype in India.
Tashan Oakley-Boothe, Tottenham Hotspur, midfielder
You have to be pretty special to be in a Premier League squad at just 17, but that's where Oakley-Boothe found himself earlier this season, on the Spurs bench for their game against Burnley. The composed central midfielder is probably at the right club if he wants a path into the first team, and he might reach it soon enough.
Angel Gomes, Manchester United, attacking midfielder
When he replaced Wayne Rooney in Manchester United's final league game of last season, Gomes became the youngest player to represent the club since Duncan Edwards back in 1953. Whether the 17-year-old will turn out to be as good as Edwards is debatable, but United youth coach Nicky Butt recently described the No. 10's talent as "ridiculous".
Phil Foden, Manchester City, midfielder
Pre-season friendlies theoretically don't mean much, but Foden was nonetheless probably quite pleased when Pep Guardiola declared "I don't have words" to describe the youngster's performance against Manchester United in the summer. A ball-playing midfielder, Foden, 17, probably has the best teacher possible for his position.
Jon Panzo, Chelsea, central defender
One of those impossibly tall 17-year-olds who you'd like to check their ID before they go on to the pitch, Panzo is more than merely a tough, physical defender. As most have to be these days, he's very comfortable on the ball, and scouts say he shows a sharp reading of the game too.
Top Mexican players to watch out for
(Compiled by Tom Marshall)
Roberto de la Rosa, Pachuca, striker
De la Rosa is an out-and-out striker in the Javier Hernandez mould. The 17-year-old, who will lead Mexico's line, already has experience in Liga MX.
Diego Lainez, Club America, forward
Lainez is already a sensation in Mexico and one of the most exciting young players to come from the country in recent years. The 17-year-old is excellent to watch on the ball and possesses a sweet left foot.
Jairo Torres, Atlas, right wing/attacking midfielder
The Atlas right-winger has a keen goal-scoring instinct and was named the best player at CONCACAF's World Cup qualifying competition. Torres, 17, was the first player born this century to play in Liga MX.
Luis Olivas, Guadalajara, centre-back
In a Mexico squad top-heavy on attacking talent, captain Olivas, 17, brings a physical presence to the heart of the defence.
Daniel Lopez, Club Tijuana, striker
The 17-year-old Lopez has formed a solid partnership up front with De la Rosa in preparation for the World Cup and is another goal threat.