By Liam Thomas

23rd Sep, 2022 | 10:17am

WhoScored names Jude Bellingham and Southampton talent Armel Bella-Kotchap in U21 team of season so far

WhoScored is the world’s biggest football statistics website and consistently delivers ratings on players after their games, now they have named the Under-21s team of the season so far.

Some surprising names have made the first XI, including a Liverpool flop and a promising Southampton star being watched by the Premier League’s finest.

Familiar faces have also made the cut, it will be interesting to see where some of these talents end up in the near future.

WhoScored chose their first XI from Europe’s top five leagues, selecting a whirlpool of talent from Ligue 1, Serie A, La Liga and the Premier League, opting for a formidable 4-3-3 formation.

Valencia’s Giorgi Mamardashvili was chosen between the posts with an average rating of 6.82.

At right-back Lyon’s Malo Gusto (7.08), right centre-back Southampton ace Armel Bella-Kotchap (7.06), left centre-back Liverpool flop Ozan Kabak (7.09) and Empoli’s left-back Fabiano Parisi completes the defence with the highest rating of (7.27).

The midfield three reveals some familiar names amongst Europe’s top clubs; Barcelona’s Pedri (7.33), Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham (7.43) and Bayern Munich’s Jamal Musiala (7.63).

Real Madrid’s Rodrygo spearheaded the under-21s attack (8.04) alongside Dango Ouattara (7.76) and Arsenal’s man of the moment Gabriel Martinelli (7.48).

One to watch.

Southampton starlet Armel Bella-Kotchap is the surprising face to emerge in the first XI from the Premier League and has been touted to be the game’s next big centre-back.

There’s no doubt that if his fine form continues, a big club will come knocking for his signature; the youngster has all the attributes to make it.

Kudos has to be given to the Saints scouting team for spotting this guy; they signed him from Bundesliga outfit Bochum for a cool £8.6million this summer.

His eye-catching form also caught the attention of Germany head coach Hansi Flick, who called up the 20-year-old to play in the national teams upcoming fixtures.

The youngster has made a seamless transition to life at Saint Mary’s, becoming an instant favourite amongst fans and pundits alike.

The future is certainly bright for Bella-Kotchap, a big-money move to a European giant will be on the cards if he continues to impress.

In other Southampton news, Armando Broja is impressing the new manager at Stamford Bridge.