The Under-21 European Championships is in full flow, with teams being knocked out ready for the finals of the competition. One team that looks particularly strong is Germany. After their senior team withered out of the World Cup last year, all eyes will be on the next crop of talent. While Kai Havertz and Leroy Sane are leading the way, players like Luca Waldschmidt are coming up close behind. This is why the young forward is One to Watch!
Waldschmidt – Club Career
Born in Siegen, Germany in 1996, the youngster linked up with Eintracht Frankfurt to join their academy and he certainly made an impact. Scoring 44 goals in 3 seasons in the youth setup, the youngster made the step up to the senior team. Unfortunately his first season was a difficult one and, without making an impact, Waldschmidt sought to play elsewhere. Another difficult season at Hamburg led the young striker to move again. In 2018 Freiburg signed the German for 5 million Euros. Since then, Waldschmidt has enjoyed his best senior season ever. Scoring 9 goals and creating an assist, he was able to help Freiburg remain in the Bundesliga. Starting just 16 games and coming on as a sub for 14, this makes the goalscoring achievement all the more impressive.
Waldschmidt – International hero?
Summer 2019 brought about the start of the Under 21 European Championships. A hotly-awaited tournament, this was a chance for the next generation to strut their stuff and show the big clubs in Europe what they can do. Some defied expectations, Romania showing that there’s a reason many are calling this their ‘golden generation’, and some fell short. England and Italy showing that big names and bags of talent is not enough to win this tough tournament.
The high fliers though, have to be Germany. And Gian-Luca Waldschmidt is the star of the show. With an incredible 7 goals to his name, the young striker has just not been able to stop scoring! Leading his team to the final with relative ease, Waldschmidt has shown that he can score when it counts.
Waldschmidt -Play style
Standing at 5’11, the young German is quite tall when compared to many modern day forwards such as Sergio Aguero and Alexandre Lacazette. This does not stop him from being a strong dribbler and his size allows him to drive past players with ease. Not afraid to take players on in a one-on-one situation, the strikers stature causes issues for defenders all game
Naturally left footed, Waldschmidt can play anywhere along the front 3. While his strongest position is in the centre, he is equally adept when drifting out to the right wing. This allows him to take players on and cut inside to find the finish.
Waldschmidt has scored some stunning goals, most notably his screamer in the recent Under 21s game against Austria. Picking the ball up from deep, he turned to face the keeper and rifled one past him in what can only be described as a rocket!
He doesn’t only score spectacular goals though. A range of talents in his locker, Waldschmidt can go hard and low across the keeper, find tight angles, chip the keeper and of course, shoot from range! All this makes it incredibly difficult to predict his next move and, as such, difficult to stop!
Waldschmidt – What next?
Undoubtedly Waldschmidt has been one of the stars of the European championships, and as a reward he will be lining up in the final against an incredibly strong looking Spanish side. It wouldn’t come as a surprise if this boosts him into the spotlight for a number of clubs and Freiburg may have to work hard to keep their man. A long summer ahead for the German side, who’s phone will definitely be ringing a bit more once the dust has settled after the final in Udine.