As at any UEFA European Under-17 Championship finals, the 2009 edition in Germany which finished on Monday showcased a glut of talented players set to follow in the footsteps of recent tournament alumni like Wayne Rooney, Cesc Fàbregas and Bojan Krkić. uefa.com's reporting team over the last fortnight look at ten players from across the eight competing nations who made their mark.
Patrick ter Mate (Netherlands)
Not the tallest goalkeeper in the finals, Vitesse/AGOVV academy custodian Ter Mate made up for that with positioning, bravery and shot-stopping ability. The Netherlands had to hold out late on in their games against England, Turkey and Switzerland and Ter Mate ensured they did just that before a magnificent display in the final despite the 2-1 loss to Germany. Italy's Mattia Perin probably gave the individual goalkeeping performance of the finals in the 0-0 draw with Spain.
Janick Kamber (Switzerland)
Switzerland had several impressive performers including holding player Kofi Nimeley and left midfielder Granit Xhaka, but it was FC Basel 1893 left-back Kamber who really caught the eye. Singled out by coach Dany Ryer after the 3-1 victory against Italy that ultimately won them Group B, Kamber was assured in defence and a threat going forward, especially when he was promoted to left midfield, and his two goals were beaten by only two players in the finals.
Marc Muniesa (Spain)
Much was made of the fact that defending champions Spain, despite the best efforts of midfielder Koke and striker Borja, did not score a goal during the tournament, but they did not concede a one either and that has a lot to do with the performances of centre-back Muniesa. The FC Barcelona youth team member - who already competes with players two years older than him - does not just resemble Carles Puyol in looks, displaying a calm presence in the heart of the defence. Left-footed and strong in the air, Spain coach Ginés Meléndez made a point of highlighting his contribution after he returned from a ten month injury lay-off.
Dennis Appiah (France)
Paired with captain Darnel Situ, Dennis Appiah cemented a defence which only conceded three goals, none from open play. The AS Monaco FC player may be small but has great timing in the tackle and an ability to launch attacks with precise distribution, and can also operate in midfield.
Marco Fossati (Italy)
Along with captain Alessandro De Vitis and 16-year-old Lorenzo Crisetig, FC Internazionale Milano's Fossati shone in a solid Italy midfield. Comfortable with both feet, Fossati was the fulcrum of all the Azzurrini's best play. He was the only player born in 1992 to start the the prestigious Campionato Allievi Nazionali final last year, alongside fellow Inter player and UEFA Champions League rising star Davide Santon.
Deniz Herber (Turkey)
The two stars of the Turkey squad, Gökhan Töre and Muhammet Demir, had frustrating tournaments with the former being sent off against Germany and the latter not at his best after recovering from a long-term knee injury. Deniz's displays in the thick of the action were to be admired as he won possession well and used it effectively. Based in Germany at FC St. Pauli, the player looked very comfortable at this level and was instrumental in Turkey's 1-0 win against England which secured his nation a FIFA U-17 World Cup spot.
Christopher Buchtmann (Germany)
Why did Liverpool FC sign this left-winger (who can also play at full-back) a year ago? Watching him in the finals, it was obvious. He scored in the opening 3-1 win against Turkey and also set up a goal in that match as well as three in the 4-0 defeat of England and the first in the 2-0 semi-final victory over Italy. His free-kick also led to the equaliser in the final. Buchtmann has plenty of skill, can switch flanks and does not shirk defensive duties.
Jack Wilshere (England)
England promised more than they delivered in the finals but Arsenal FC forward Wilshere bolstered his reputation, giving the Netherlands a torrid time in the opening game which his side were unfortunate to only draw 1-1. When he was on the ball, anything could happen, especially when he was linking with club-mate Luke Freeman or tall midfielder Jonjo Shelvey.
Lennart Thy (Germany)
Germany's three-man forward line of the big Kevin Scheidhauer, creative Mario Götze and menacing Thy was formidable, with final free-kick hero Florian Trinks in reserve. Thy especially performed impressively since it took two weeks of intensive treatment on a groin injury before the finals to get him fit, but the bustling and talented Werder Bremen striker looked to be in top shape and shared the top scorers' prize with three goals, the last the equaliser in the final.
Luc Castaignos (Netherlands)
The joint-finals top scorer could have had more than the three goals he did end up with, hitting the woodwork against Turkey and in both the group game and final with Germany. His height, his pace, his strength and finishing ability marked him out as an outstanding striker and he was blessed by having as his suppliers his Feyenoord team-mate, right-winger Shabir Isoufi, and Arsenal playmaker Oguzhan Özyakup. Isoufi teed up his opener in the final while Özyakup set Castaignos up to rattle the post.
This list has been determined by uefa.com reporters working at the tournament. The UEFA Technical Study group will produce an official team of the tournament as part of their technical report on the finals.
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