10 players who failed to reach their full potential


02 March 2021

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Playing soccer in today's game is incredibly demanding. Yes, they might get paid millions and millions to play their favorite sport week after week, which most of us would happily do for free, yet many would argue that it doesn't come without a hitch. The constant media surrounding players can take their toll, where even the smallest step offline can fly in a player's face. With the constant temptation that must surround them, either wanting to lead a 'normal' life (wanting to have a drink and going out to the club) or the 'advantages' of being rich and famous (women, boys ...?) One God-given talent is not enough to secure your place in history as a top-tier player. Of course it helps, but you also need to work incredibly hard in training, stay out of the headlines for the wrong reasons, and get a little bit of luck.

However, sometimes a player who seems to show so much promise falls short of his potential. Could it be the pitfalls of living the footballer's lifestyle that takes them off the rails? Were you unlucky with the injuries that ruined his career? Or was it too, too soon? being built too high on a pedestal they were never going to reach. Of course, the saying goes that the bigger they are, the harder they fall. So why do some players fade so much, when their star seemed destined to shine so bright? The Football Writer has chosen its top 10 players who have failed to truly fulfill their potential ...

10. Kerlon, 24, Brazil (currently plays for the Brazilian National-NS).
The Brazilians are famous for their striking technique and dribbling ability, something that Kerlon certainly did not lack. An incredible natural talent, he became famous all over the world when millions saw his incredible 'seal dribble' on YouTube; bouncing the ball on his head repeatedly as he runs across the field. This would often force opposition players to foul and get frustrated, which, while it must have been difficult for him, could only benefit the team.

Perhaps inevitably due to his trademark dribbling, he suffered a severe knee injury that limited his appearances. A transfer to Inter Milan via Chievo had Kerlon apparently destined for a career at the top, but he continued to suffer knee injuries that prevented him from making an impact. A loan to Ajax to gain first-team form and experience in Europe was marred by another knee injury, before he escaped from his Italian hell with successive loan deals and an eventual permanent transfer back to Brazil. He finished four years in Serie A with just four appearances, all for Chievo. Now that he plays for the Brazilian National-NS, one can only wonder how good he could have been had he been able to replicate his early natural ability on the European stage, yet this is a story of injuries that truly outdid him. a player before. they had given him a chance to start.

9. Michael Owen, 32, England (currently a free agent after being released by Manchester United).
After successfully graduating through his youth system and making his debut for Liverpool (in which he scored) in the penultimate game of the 96-97 season, Owen's first season in the Premier League saw him named Young Player of the Year of the PFA, finishing the league's top scorer with 18 goals. Enthusiastic, agile and with a knack for hitting the back of the net, Owen heralded himself as a world-class 'wonder boy' with a brilliant solo goal against Argentina at the 1998 World Cup.

Owen continued this excellence by being Liverpool's top scorer in all the seasons that followed until he left for Real Madrid, and thus began his downfall. Not being able to start with a bang meant he had to regularly settle for a bench spot, so he ended his only season with a move to Newcastle to get in match form in time for the 2006 World Cup. on the track, a serious knee injury in the World Cup gave him a big setback. It seems that since that injury he has lost some of his rhythm that was so devastating and such an important part of the way he played. Various other injuries and setbacks began to ruin his career, so it came as a surprise when Sir Alex signed him at Manchester United. Yet just five league goals in his three seasons at the club prior to his release show just how far he's fallen since his Liverpool days. Not only has he lost some of the brilliance he had when he was young, but now he is too unreliable due to injuries.


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