Football’s Rising Stars – Yannick Ferreira Carrasco

Yannick Ferreira Carrasco moved to Monaco of the French league in 2010 from his native Belgium and became part of the principality outfit’s second team. Two years later he was playing for the club’s first team and made a name for himself with his skills on the wing.

Carrasco’s performances saw Atletico Madrid sign him in the summer of 2015 and he has started showing La Liga what he is capable of with his splendid displays this season.

Playing style

Carrasco is a mobile forward whose strengths lie in his ability to dribble past defenders, creating chances for his teammates and a keen eye for goal that sees him getting on the score sheet more often than not.

He is mostly deployed on the wing from where he has the freedom to take on the wide defender and send crosses in or dribble inside and play through balls for the centre-forward to run on to. Carrasco’s rounded game makes him a handful for the opposition defences.

Future at Atletico Madrid

Upon his arrival at the Vicente Calderon in the summer of 2015, Carrasco wasn’t an automatic selection in Diego Simeone’s first team and struggled to get consistent appearances in his first season with Los Colchoneros. The Madrid outfit had an embarrassment of riches in the 2015/16 season with arrival of several forward options in Jackson Martinez and Luciano Vietto apart from Carrasco himself having to contend with the likes of Angel Correa, Fernando Torres and the established first choice forward Antoine Griezmann.

However, this season Martinez and Vietto have moved on and Carrasco has surged ahead of his forward rivals to become one of the first names on the Atletico Madrid team sheet.

The 23-year-old has appeared in every single game for Simeone’s side this campaign and has notched up an impressive tally of ten goals and three assists from 19 games in all competitions. Deployed primarily on the left wing, Carrasco is on course to having a decisive season. And his future at the Calderon appears to be bright.

Prospects with the national team

Carrasco made his international debut for Belgium in March last year and was part of Marc Wilmots’ side for the 2016 European Championship where he scored his first international goal in a 4-0 thrashing of Hungary.

He has since gone on to become an integral part of Roberto Martinez’s Red Devils and is likely to serve his national team for the better part of the coming decade.

The Belgians have had a plethora of talented players for the past few years but their skills have not translated into good performances at major tournaments, and if the team are to have a change in their fortunes, Carrasco is likely to have a big say in it.

Achievements so far

  • With his 79th minute equalising goal for Atletico Madrid in the 2016 Champions League final against Real Madrid, Carrasco became the only Belgian to score in a European Cup final.
  • Carrasco scored his first professional hat-trick in a 7-1 mauling of Granada in a La Liga encounter on 15th October 2016.