The 20 Brazil youngsters with the most potential

FT Desk
FT Desk
  • 23 Oct 2022 22:28 BST
  • 3 min read
Rodrygo celebrating a goal for Real Madrid.

Brazil are the most successful nation in football history, with a record five World Cups to their name.

From Pele through Ronaldo and Ronaldinho to Neymar today, many a Selecao starlet has been given the chance to shine despite their tender years.

Footballers are one of Brazil's biggest exports economically, and Real Madrid had four of their number - Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo, Casemiro and Marcelo - when they won the Champions League last season.

Vinicius is now 22 so no longer qualifies for this list of players aged 21 or under, while Palmeiras starlet Endrick is at the other end of the scale, yet to sign a pro contract but expected to feature soon.

Rodrygo leads the way in the latest analysis, his SciSports potential skill topping out at 132.7 after his meteoric rise with Real. The forward had seven goal-involvements on Real's run to European glory last season.

Next on the list is Arsenal youngster Gabriel Martinelli, who has blossomed into a first-team regular with the Premier League leaders.

Completing the podium is a player heavily linked with the Gunners in Danilo, the Palmeiras midfielder who is also attracting interest from Barcelona after drawing comparisons with Sergio Busquets.

Fulham's Matt Dibley-Dias is an interesting one, meanwhile. Born in New Zealand to parents with English and Brazilian ancestry, his grandfather Manoel Jose Dias previously turned out for Flamengo and Corinthians.

PlayerParent ClubPotential SciSports Skill
1. RodrygoReal Madrid132.7
2. Gabriel MartinelliArsenal124.8
3. DaniloPalmeiras116.6
4. Joao PedroWatford108.0
5. Marcos LeonardoSantos106.9
6. Matt Dibley-DiasFulham106.6
7. MoratoBenfica105.6
8. Angelo GabrielSantos104.9
9. VandersonMonaco104.8
10. Talles MagnoNew York City103.7
11. Yan CoutoMan City103.
12. Vitor RoqueParanaense102.9
13. Victor HugoFlamengo101.9
14. KaikyAlmeria101.6
15. Kaio JorgeJuventus101.4
16. RenanAl Ahli100.5
17. MartinelliFluminense100.0
18. Yuri AlbertoZenit100.0
19. Bruno PraxedesBragantino99.2
20. Lino SousaArsenal99.1

How is the SciSkill ranking calculated?

SciSports explains how our development ratings are gathered:

"Among others, a positive development could be boosted by more playing time, playing time on a higher level or better performances on the pitch.

"A negative development could be due to the player being active on a lower level than he used to play, bad performances or the fact that he does not play that often as he used to do.

"A SciSkill Development of 0.0 could indicate that a player is performing exactly like our algorithm expects him to do. Another reason could be inactivity (e.g. a long-term injury or suspension)."