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The best in show from France 2010...

The 2010 UEFA Under-19 European Championships have reached their conclusion and it was the hosts, France, who emerged victorious, following the trend set by Ukraine in the 2009 edition. Alexandre Lacazette, the outstanding young Olympique Lyonnais forward, scored the winning goal in the final off a sublime assist by the effervescent Gael Kakuta.

The result came as something of a shock to viewers as les Bleuets' opponents, Spain, had been heavily favoured to emerge on top. And despite a fine first half and indeed, preceding four matches, la Rojita were unable to contain a France team which considerably upped the tempo in the second half.

Gilles Sunu put his side back on level terms before Lacazette's late intervention. Frace saw off Croatia, narrowly, in the semi-finals while Spain ran out convincing winners against England.

Here, selects the best player from each of the final four teams.


Name: Gael Kakuta
Age: 19
Club: Chelsea
Position: Attacker

The Chelsea creator looked like a man in a child's game at times, such was the level of dominance he enjoyed against the Netherlands and Austria in the group stages.

He found it hard to get to grips with the final until the second period but came into his own as the French turned the screw. His urgent run in the closing stages bamboozled the Spanish defence and his stood-up through pass for Lacazette showed a rare brand of vision.

Quite simply, Kakuta is the strongest prospect at these finals, bar none, and will challenge for a starting XI berth at Stamford Bridge next season.

The former RC Lens player, who was at the centre of the transfer scandal which engulfed Chelsea last season, is a versatile forward who is comfortable carrying the ball from either side of the attack and controlling games through the central sector. He has a wide array of tricks and skills in his locker and has a change of pace that can turn him away from most defenders.

France were irresistible at times during the two weeks of competition and a lot of the credit for their tournament win must go to Kakuta.


Name: Dani Pacheco
Age: 19
Club: Liverpool
Position: Forward

About four or five players from the runners-up could have been eligible for a place on this list but the Merseyside-based frontman just shaded the voting ahead of Keko, Thiago Alcantara and others.

The Barcelona youth-team product finished as top scorer in France and provided the slickest of through balls for Rodrigo to open the scoring in the finals. His pace, movement and efficient usage of the ball were too much for Spain's opponents throughout the piece and he racked up four goals in five matches.

Pacheco's performance against Portugal yielded a high-profile brace before his display against England in the semi-finals alerted the watching world to his potential. Very much on the fringe of things at Liverpool last season, the Spaniard should figure in Roy Hodgson's plans this coming term.

An outstanding prospect who needs to be nurtured carefully in the Premier League, Pacheco could be a full international this time next year.


Name: Nathan Delfouneso
Age: 19
Club: Aston Villa
Position: Forward

This tournament was another bitter pill to swallow for followers of English football as the Three Lions' technical deficiencies were again brought to the fore. Largely dependent on a physical and pacy approach, Noel Blake's team did not have enough weaponry in their armour to disrupt a fine Spain team's seamless brand of football in the final-four.

However, the form of Delfouneso, the Aston Villa forward who was top scorer at the 2009 finals, was the consolation for the English.

He made life uncomfortable for the Spanish, putting their sometimes unsure rearguard under considerable pressure with his movement and nifty footwork. He failed to net at these finals but a lot of England's attacking play revolved around his intelligent running and strong hold-up play.

Delfouneso is expected to be a key part of the first-team picture at Aston Villa next season and, at the age of 19, already has Premier League, FA Cup and European experience under his belt and is held in high esteem by manager Martin O'Neill, who has used him sparingly to this point.


Name: Zvonko Pamic
Age: 19
Club: Freiburg (on loan from Bayer Leverkusen)
Position: Midfielder

A magnificent hat-trick against Portugal, which sealed Croatia's progress to the semi-finals and to next year's under-20 World Cup in Colombia, was the highlight of Zvonko Pamic's tournament.

The former NK Karlovac player was in tremendous form for his side that afternoon to eliminate the Iberians and his treble included a fine free-kick. Pamic was in good touch in the semis too and it was his dead ball which was touched home by Arijan Ademi that gave the Croatians an unlikely lead. However, the Croatia team which deployed some breathtaking attacking football under coach Ivan Grnja, ultimately came up short in the final-four.

Pamic completed a deal with Bayer Leverkusen in April and the Werkself will be pleased with their scouting department for unearthing this gem before his stock rose in France. The 19-year-old will play at Freiburg next season on a loan deal.

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