By Peter Lynch

30th Mar, 2023 | 2:40pm

Amadou Onana ranked among best young players in world amid Everton struggles

Everton ace Amadou Onana has been ranked among the best young players in world football, with the midfielder placing number 25 in ESPN’s 39 best male players age 21 or under.

The midfielder has been a star performer amid Everton’s struggles this season, having joined from Ligue 1 side Lille last summer for £33million.

Onana is now worth an estimated £36.9million according to ESPN, with the youngster expected to become even better if he can improve certain aspects of his game.

“Courtesy of his excellent work rate, the 6-3 Onana provides a persistent, reliable enforcing presence in midfield,” according to ESPN. “His size doesn’t restrict his mobility as he enters duels (an average of nine attacking challenges per 90 minutes) and presses with high intensity.

“Just as his frequent ball recoveries, aerial dominance and tackling alleviate the pressure on Everton’s defence, Onana is also hard to dispossess — especially when he sets off on a forward burst with the ball.

“First and foremost a defensive-minded midfielder who is mainly tasked with ball-winning and retention, Onana can improve his first touch and be less predictable when he has time and space.”

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Young star

Onana initially impressed at Everton under previous manager Frank Lampard, shining in midfield despite the Toffees struggling to operate successfully as a whole.

And the midfielder has continued his impressive displays under Sean Dyche, with his £33million signing looking like an absolute steal.

Unfortunately for the Toffees, they could lose their star youngster this summer, with many top clubs reportedly keen on his signature.

Any deal will, however, result in a huge profit for the Merseyside outfit, with Onana’s stock rising and rising in recent months.

At just 21, he appeared for Belgium at the 2022 World Cup, as well as being handed the captain’s armband for his nation in their friendly victory over Germany on Tuesday (28 March) upon Kevin De Bruyne’s exit from the pitch.

Onana finds himself on the exciting list alongside fellow midfielders Jude Bellingham and Barcelona duo Pedri and Gavi, news that the Belgium international will welcome with open arms.