Euro 2016 is just around the corner, and the summer party in France will be a phenomenal opportunity for fans around the continent to feast their eyes on Europe’s top talent.
More importantly, scouts from the best teams will be monitoring targets with eager eyes as they look to gain a better insight as to whether those players can perform at the very top; one of the most intriguing names on that list will be Poland’s Arkadiusz Milik.
Despite the final day disappointment of seeing his Ajax team lose out on the Eredivisie title, Milik has enjoyed a phenomenal first full season in Amsterdam.
Having previously impressed during a loan spell from Bayer Leverkusen, the 22-year-old returned a fantastic 21 league goals over the course of 2015/15, and has quickly garnered praise from a number of potential suitors in England, Spain and Italy. And with Frank De Boer stepping down as head coach at the Amsterdam Arena, the young Polish star may view this summer as the perfect time to make his move back to one of Europe’s elite leagues.
The Eredivisie is a conveyor belt of top young talent being developed for a future in the big leagues. However, the Dutch side’s inexplicable failure to reach the tournament means that just three Netherlands-based players will be heading to France.
In truth, we’re unlikely to see much of Milot Rashica (Albania and Vitesse) or Adam Nemec (Czech Republic and Willem II). But the hopes of seeing a big tournament from Milik are far greater; he could in fact become one of the young stars of the tournament.
Dutch experts at Onlinewedden.com believe that the fact Milik will play second fiddle to star man Robert Lewandowski could work wonders, suggesting that a lack of preparation from opposing defences could leave the Ajax man with the extra yard of space needed to demonstrate his talents on the biggest stage.
This recipe allowed Milik to hit six goals in qualifying, including crucial strikes against Germany and Scotland. Should he perform with the same level of attacking authority in France, the Polish partnership could thrive.
Whilst Milik is still a work in progression, he has absolutely no fear in front of goal and will shoot whenever the chance arrives. Meanwhile, his tendency to dribble at defenders in an aggressive style could make him one of the most exciting prospects at the tournament.
Those natural abilities in the final third, along with his big physical presence, have already caught the eye of Leicester City amongst others. Euro 2016 is a great chance to see how he handles himself against a higher level of opposition.
Progressing from a difficult Group C, which also includes Germany, Ukraine and Northern Ireland, won’t be easy. Nevertheless, Poland will have big expectations of enjoying their best tournament in years.
After their spectacular failure in the event they co-hosted four years, ago, it’s essential that they do.
The weight of expectation will be on the shoulders of Lewandowski, but this is a phenomenal chance for Milik to make a name for himself by vindicating the widespread praise of the past few months.
If he does, a move away from Amsterdam could come far sooner than expected.