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Sterling Near the Top of Europe's Golden Boy List

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The list of nominees for Europe's Golden Boy has been named, and three Liverpool players are on it, with Raheem Sterling amongst the favourites to win it.

Clive Rose

Luis Suarez may have been left off the 23-man ballot for the Ballon d'Or by FIFA, but since he's not a Liverpool player any more, the various controversies surrounding him are now someone else's headache. And when it comes to Liverpool's current players, there's some good news on the awards front when over on the young player of the year side of the ledger.

Raheem Sterling, Lazar Markovic, and Divok Origi all made the 40-man long-list for Europe's Golden Boy award for the best player under the age of 21. Of the three, Sterling seems by far the likeliest to end up near the top when voting ends, and given the younger age limit—the Premier League's equivalent award is for players under the age of 23—there's a good chance he wins it.

If Sterling were to win, it would be the first time since Wayne Rooney was named young player of the year in 2004 that an English player has captured the prize, but it will be a tough fight at the top against the likes of Schalke's Max Meyer and PSG's Marquinhos. Last year, Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba won the award.

The nominees are:

England: Calum Chambers (Arsenal); Kurt Zouma (Chelsea); John Stones (Everton); Raheem Sterling, Lazar Markovic (Liverpool); Adnan Januzaj, Luke Shaw (Manchester United); Nabil Bentaleb, Eric Dier (Tottenham)

Spain: Gerard Deulofeu (Sevilla); Aymeric Laporte (Athletic Bilbao); Munir El Haddai, Sandro Ramirez (Barcelona); Saul Niguez (Atletico Madrid)

Italy: Domenico Berardi (Sassuolo); Bernardeschi Franco (Fiorentina); Kingsley Coman (Juventus); Keita Balde Diao (Lazio); Mateo Kovacic (Inter)

Germany: Hakan Calhanoglu (Bayer Leverkusen); Gianluca Gaudino, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (Bayern Munich); Mathias Ginter (Borussia Dortmund); Julian Green (Hamburg); Maximilian Meyer (Schalke)

France: Marquinhos, Adrien Rabiot (Paris Saint-Germain); Benjamin Mendy (Marseille); Lucas Ocampos (Monaco); Divock Origi (Lille/Liverpool)

Other: Bruma (Galatasaray); Gonzalez (Basel); Arkadiusz Milik (Ajax); Alexander Mitrovic, Dennis Praet (Anderlecht); Nikola Ninkovic (Partizan Belgrade); Oliver Torres (Porto); Tonny Vilhena (Feyenoord); J.etro Willems (PSV); Luka Zahovic (Maribor)