Eleven stars to watch light up the Premier League
Euro 2016 provided some of the game's brightest young talents, the likes of Portugal midfielder Renato Sanches and France centre-back Samuel Umtiti, with the chance to shine.
The Rio Olympics promise to do the same for those eager to dazzle in the shop window.
But the various pre-season friendlies and tournaments clubs have scheduled offer new signings and relatively unknown youngsters an opportunity to stake a claim for regular selection, particularly in the English Premier League.
Who will succeed? Which young players will seize the spotlight in what is expected to be the most open Premier League title race in years? We pick 11 rising stars to look out for next season.
Loris Karius: Goalkeeper, 23 years old, Liverpool
With his toothy grin, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp exudes charming affability. But his $6.2m (£4m, 7m AUD) acquisition of Karius from Mainz hints at the ruthlessness that underpinned his success at Borussia Dortmund.
Liverpool's current goalkeeper Simon Mignolet pulls off the most balletic saves, but the Belgian's erratic handling betrays his vulnerability.
Karius promises a safer pair of hands once he recovers from the broken hand he suffered in a pre-season friendly against Chelsea in the United States.
Previously in Manchester City's youth team, he was ever-present for Mainz last season and voted the third best goalkeeper in the Bundesliga. A confident player, the German has already declared his intention to depose Mignolet between the sticks, a necessary stepping stone to international recognition.
Rob Holding: Centre-back/full-back, 20 years old, Arsenal
Arsene Wenger's pre-season spending strategy has long confused the average, exasperated Arsenal supporter. The sudden, unexpected signing of Holding for about $2.6m by the Arsenal manager is no exception. He was relegated from the English Championship last season with Bolton Wanderers and is not considered a superior centre-back to the established trio of Laurent Koscielny, Per Mertesacker and Gabriel.
The hype that followed and increasingly haunted John Stones' fledgling career at Everton has been conspicuous by its absence with Holding. But, there are other circumstances to consider.
Wenger has never satisfactorily filled the slot alongside Koscielny, who himself is susceptible to the odd mistake, and Holding offers versatility as he is capable of filling in at full-back too. His rise from Bolton hopeful to the England Under-21 side was rapid. At this summer's Toulon Tournament with the England Under-21s, he partnered his club-mate Calum Chambers. Wenger is already thinking about the future.
Eric Bailly: Centre-back, 22 years old, Manchester United
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is adept at applying Band-Aids to broken dressing rooms. He finds the flaws and fixes them quickly. At Chelsea the second time round, the Portuguese identified the hole in central midfield, dropped in Nemanja Matic and the title went back to Stamford Bridge.
Mourinho's first signing at United was Bailly, immediately addressing their defensive deficiencies. Clearly, the 53-year-old believes in the Ivorian, spending $39.5m in a calculated gamble. The defender has the rangy, athletic build and versatility that Mourinho typically favours.
After 47 appearances for Villarreal, experience is not a problem, but the step up might be. Bailly looked overawed against Borussia Dortmund, who hammered United 4-1 in a friendly, and Mourinho is not renowned for his patience with young players. However, a lack of centre-back options may force the Ivory Coast defender to establish himself quickly.
Joel Matip: Centre-back, 25 years old, Liverpool
The Bundesliga still offers solid experience at a reasonable price in a seller's market and Klopp is the Premier League manager best placed to exploit his insider knowledge of it. The German has monitored Matip's steady rise through Schalke's ranks for years.
The Cameroon defender formed a redoubtable partnership with Schalke captain and Germany regular Benedikt Howedes, chalking up more than 200 appearances before his contract expired this summer. Klopp clearly rates the 196cm (6ft 5in) defender, allowing both Martin Skrtel and Kolo Toure to leave. Matip is a physically imposing character, a towering stopper capable of playing in several positions.
At Dortmund, Klopp took a young Mats Hummels and turned him into an outstanding defender. At Liverpool, he hopes to do the same with Matip.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg: Midfielder, 21 years old, Southampton
His countrymen knew of his prodigious talent long before Southampton went marching in. At 16, he was selected as Denmark's Under-17 Player of the Year. At 18, he was honoured as the Danish 'talent of the year' and Pep Guardiola saw him as an integral member of Bayern Munich's squad.
Guardiola's emphasis on quick transitions from defence to attack appeared to play to Hojbjerg's strengths. His heavy industry almost makes the combative Dane a throwback to the cherished box-to-box midfielders that once dominated European football. Assured in possession, his exemplary work ethic has allowed him to flourish as both wing-back and holding midfielder. Bayern's strength in depth limited his first-team opportunities and his impatience led to his $16.8m move to Southampton.
A tenacious tackler, his pugnacious demeanour suggests English football's physicality will not pose a problem.
Gokhan Tore: Winger, 24 years old, West Ham United
Last season, West Ham supporters thought they had signed a pudgy French maverick, but manager Slaven Bilic knew better. Less than a year later, Dimitri Payet was a Euro 2016 finalist. Now, Bilic believes he can repeat the trick with Tore.
He worked with the Germany-born Turkey winger at Besiktas and made him his primary target. Blessed with an explosive burst of speed, Tore is tasked with filling West Ham's new stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the centerpiece of London 2012, every other week with his nifty footwork.
Bilic is adamant that on his season-long loan Tore can steer the club towards Champions League qualification.
Granit Xhaka: Midfielder, 23 years old, Arsenal
When it mattered, Arsenal's prestigious signing could not cover himself in glory at Euro 2016. He missed a penalty in the shootout against Poland and Switzerland were knocked out in the last 16. He was the only player to miss.
But the combative midfielder had already done enough to suggest that Wenger had found some steeliness to go with all that frilly silk. Xhaka was named man of the match twice in the group stages with a couple of bullish displays.
At $39.5m, he did not come cheap, but his commanding performances, not to mention his love of a tackle, are the dynamic qualities missing from Arsenal's malleable midfield.
Sofiane Feghouli: Midfielder, 26 years old, West Ham United
The oldest player on this list, but he has recently offered glimpses of his untapped potential. Capable of playing out wide or through the middle as an attacking midfielder, the Algerian international's industry and inventiveness appeals to Bilic.
During West Ham's pre-season tour of Austria, Feghouli delivered a swashbuckling display, creating chances and adding his name to the score sheet with a fine, long-range strike against Karlsruher.
The former Valencia man has settled quickly in East London, just in time for West Ham's early Europa League obligations. With Payet and fellow new signing Tore, Feghouli may form one of the Premier League's most entertaining attacking trios.
Ahmed Musa: Forward, 23 years old, Leicester City
The champions still have time in the transfer window to try to fill the void left by the departure of the irreplaceable N'Golo Kante, who has joined Chelsea. In the meantime, they have replaced a player who has not yet left.
Leicester broke the bank on Jamie Vardy's long-term successor, signing Musa for a club-record fee of about $21m. In the short term, the Nigeria striker will lighten the load. Vardy's season-long exertions took their toll as the club won their first Premier League title.
He looked a spent force at Euro 2016, and Musa can fill the popular England striker's boots from time to time. A shorter, sinewy forward, he shares Vardy's need for speed. He is fast but is not quite yet the finished article.
However, he still scored 18 goals and collected six assists in 44 appearances for CSKA Moscow last season. Musa's acceleration suits Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri's counter-pressing approach, along with his ability to cut inside from the left. In their first Champions League campaign, Leicester expect an early return on their sizeable investment.
Michy Batshuayi: Striker, 22 years old, Chelsea
One touch was enough to convince Chelsea to part with about $43.4m. With 15 minutes left to play against Hungary at Euro 2016, Belgium introduced Batshuayi. Within seconds, the raw gem scored with his first touch. Days later, he was a Chelsea player.
Raised in a tough Brussels suburb, Batshuayi is an old-school street footballer, honing his aggressive skills on improvised, pockmarked slabs of concrete. What the 182cm forward lacks in height, he makes up for in tenacity and is more than capable of leading the line for Chelsea manager Antonio Conte. Like legendary Chelsea striker Didier Drogba, he left Marseille for Stamford Bridge, having scored 33 goals in 78 appearances.
Conte is confident that he can channel Batshuayi's volatility and turn him into a reliable goal source. Quick, energetic and occasionally belligerent, the Belgian is Conte's kind of striker.
Vincent Janssen: Striker, 22 years old, Tottenham Hotspur
Little more than a year ago, Janssen was patrolling penalty boxes in largely empty stadiums in the Dutch second division. By the end of last season, he had played and scored for the Netherlands, picked up the Johan Cruyff Trophy, awarded to the Eredivisie's Young Player of the Year, and earned favourable comparisons to Robin van Persie, who played for Arsenal and United in the Premier League.
In mid-July, he left AZ Alkmaar for Tottenham in a deal worth $22.3m. He joins a manager in Mauricio Pochettino renowned for rewarding youthful promise with regular selection. Pochettino has little interest in birth certificates and Janssen can expect plenty of opportunities to play alongside Harry Kane and alleviate the Englishman's striking burden.
Janssen knocked in 27 goals last season to finish as the top scorer in the Eredivisie and has already found the net for Spurs in pre-season friendlies. Pochettino's swift, counter-attacking strategy suggests the goals will keep coming for the Dutchman.
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