Three French U19 stars as talented as the new Zidane

Zinedine Zidane

Enzo Zidane caught the headlines with his call-up to the France U19 squad. Here are three other players worth keeping tabs on.

For the first time since the 2010 World Cup final in Germany, the name Zidane will finally make its return to the French international scene. However, it is not the genius of Zinedine that the French fans are getting excited about. It has been his 18-year-old son, Enzo that has captured the attention of the French media this week.

Enzo Zidane was born in Bordeaux, but is eligible to also play for Spain due to his father's playing career, the midfielder has chosen Les Bleus for his first international experience and France is already dreaming of the Zidane name making a glorious come-back.

Questioned on Tuesday night by reporters during a charity football match in Bern, the World Cup winner was proud of his sons’ achievements.

"I am proud that he can wear the French jersey for the first time. He wanted it and he deserves it, it is not only because he is called Zidane, but he does beautiful things on the pitch...In any case, he is delighted to be picked and I am as proud as my dad was with my first selection."

The spotlight has firmly been on Enzo this week, but here are three other France Under-19 players that are worth remembering.

Marco Ilaimaharitra - FC Sochaux - Midfield

At only 18-years-old, Ilaimaharitra has already made his way into the Sochaux first-team under new coach Herve Renard. He has been mostly used as a sub, but played the full 90 minutes in the 1-0 loss to Nice and the 2-1 win over Rennes in December.

He is a strong stocky central midfielder, more on the defensive side, he has not been afraid to put in a tackle. Sochaux have a history of bringing through young talented midfielders, Marco looks like being the next to shine.

Thomas Lemar - SM Caen - Midfield

Lemar is the latest in young midfielders to catch the eye at SM Caen. Ever since they dropped to Ligue 2, the Normandy side have been concentrating in developing youth. This is the same side that brought you M'Baye Niang.

Born in 1995, he is a central midfielder that seems to be able to play all across the middle of the park; he made his debut in August 2013, replacing French football legend Jerome Rothen.

He is small but powerful, good on the ball and his low centre of gravity helps him skip past opponents. A star of the U17 French side, now it's time for him to step up a level.

Corentin Jean - Troyes - Forward

Small but absolutely deadly, the Troyes forward made his mark last season in Ligue 1, leading the line all on his own at just 17-years-old. He burst on to the scene when he scored his first goal in the Coupe de la Ligue in 2012, equalising against Rennes.

He seems to have everything to make it as a forward, pace, great movement and a deadly eye for goal. He has five goals for Troyes and also scored a double in his debut for the France U17 side. A move to Ligue 1 will happen sooner rather than later.

images: © Patrick Gaudin, © Patrick Gaudin

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