The 2018/19 Bundesliga season is shaping up to be one of the most exciting in recent memory - not least because of a handful of swashbuckling teenagers taking the league by storm: Jadon Sancho, Kai Havertz, Dan-Axel Zagadou, Evan N'Dicka and Arne Maier.
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Club: Borussia Dortmund
Bundesliga appearances: 23 (5 goals)
The superlatives are running out for Sancho, whose performance in Dortmund's Klassiker win confirmed the hype about the English teenage sensation who picked up his first senior cap for his country last month. He was unable to add to his four goals and six assists in the top-of-the-table clash, but the confidence was again oozing in his fifth straight start for Lucien Favre's men.
Watch: Sancho tips Dortmund for success
Part of the Westphalian club's fantastic five forwards, Sancho has ears pricked all over Europe, with Bundesliga legend Lothar Matthäus branding him the "perfect footballer". No wonder Dortmund were delighted to extend his contract until 2022, ensuring Bundesliga fans even more joy in watching Sancho's silky skills in years to come.
Club: Bayer Leverkusen
Bundesliga appearances: 65 (10)
Touted as Germany's next big thing for several years now, it may come as a surprise to know that Havertz is still just 19. A player who counts Mesut Özil as one of his main inspirations, Havertz shares the agility, close control and skills of the former Schalke and Werder Bremen and current Arsenal midfielder, but arguably already beats him in the physical department.
Watch: Havertz's career Bundesliga highlights
Thanks to his larger frame, Havertz also knows how to throw his weight around and he has no fear in the tackle either. The youngest debutant and goalscorer in Leverkusen's history has come of age in just two years, honing not only a sharp eye for goal, but also outstanding vision which has helped him also supply 17 assists. Now already a full Germany international, at his current rate of development, Havertz appears destined for the very top.
Club: Borussia Dortmund
Bundesliga appearances: 18 (1)
A product of the Paris Saint-Germain academy, French defender Zagadou is one of many players to have been given an opportunity in the Bundesliga - and to have taken it. A key feature in Favre's defence, even the Swiss coach admitted a touch of surprise at how well he has settled in this season. "His development's been fantastic," Favre said after Dortmund's Matchday 10 win over Wolfsburg. "He's now played eight games in a row and shows great anticipation. He's outstanding."
Club: Eintracht Frankfurt
Bundesliga appearances: 11 (1)
While Frankfurt's triple-pronged attack of Ante Rebic, Luka Jovic and Sebastien Haller are claiming the headlines in the Eagles' rise into the top four, ask coach Adi Hütter to list his key men and the name of N'Dicka will feature high up on it. "He was thrown in at the deep end and swam himself through," said former Frankfurt start Alexander Schur. "He shows no nerves and plays with great authority."
Still only 19 and with only 14 appearances in France's second division with Auxerre on his CV before arriving in Frankfurt, N'Dicka is a fast learner and is quickly maturing into one of the league's toughest defenders. "He's a really good lad," said Hütter, whose Young Boys Bern had the second meanest defence in Switzerland last season, combined with the strongest attack. Thanks to N'Dicka, that successful formula is being repeated in Frankfurt.
Club: Hertha Berlin
Bundesliga appearances: 29 (-)
He may not yet have opened his account for Hertha but that does not mean Maier has not made an impression in this, his second season as a professional. A regular this term without missing a single minute so far, the Germany U21 international is "getting better and better," according to his coach Pal Dardai.
"The next logical step for him is the national team – Arne's got the potential," continued Dardai, who now considers Maier's as one of the first names on his team sheet. That is in part due to his versatility. Equally at home in the holding role as he is further forward, Maier has also played as support for the attacking line for club and country. "He was already one of Germany's most talented players at U14 and U15 level," commented Meikel Schönweitz, who coached him in Germany's U17s, to the Tagesspiegel. Now, he is showing just why he earned such praise with his consistent performances in the Bundesliga.