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The Kopa Trophy, organised by the France Football magazine, is awarded to the best footballer of the year under the age of 21. 

Named after former France national football team midfielder Raymond Kopa, the winner of the prestigious award is selected by former Ballon d’Or recipients and given at the annual France Football ceremony along with the Ballon d’Or award.

Footballers playing outside of Europe are also eligible for the Kopa Trophy unlike the Golden Boy award, which is given only to the best U-21 footballer playing in a European nation's top tier.

Introduced in 2018, Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe won the first Kopa Trophy after he helped France clinch the FIFA World Cup that year. USA star footballer Christian Pulisic came second while Justin Kluivert, son of former Dutch football team striker Patrick Kluivert, was third.

Meanwhile, Netherlands defender Matthijs De Ligt was named the Kopa Trophy winner in 2019 while England forward Jadon Sancho was adjudged second and Portugal rising star João Félix came third.

Just like the Ballon d’Or, the Kopa Trophy had to be cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kopa Trophy winners list

Year

Player

Club

2018

Kylian Mbappe 

Paris Saint-Germain 

2019

Matthijs De Ligt

Juventus

2020

Cancelled due to COVID-19

2021

Pedri

Barcelona

Who are the nominees for Kopa Trophy 2022?

France Football magazine has announced the 10 nominees for the upcoming Kopa Trophy 2022. Spain midfielder Gavi, and England duo of Bukayo Saka and Jude Bellingham are on the 10-man shortlist for the award.

Here are the Kopa Trophy 2022 nominees: 

Karim Adeyemi (Borussia Dortmund)

Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund)

Eduardo Camavinga (Real Madrid)

Gavi (Barcelona)

Ryan Gravenberch (Bayern Munich)

Josko Gvardiol (RB Leipzig)

Nuno Mendes (PSG)

Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich)

Bukayo Saka (Arsenal)

Florian Wirtz (Bayer Leverkusen)

Featured photo: FRANCK FIFE / AFP

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