Monaco and Ligue1 put youth first in Europe. Young Gunners top EPL

October 1 – Monaco top a league of Big 5 clubs ranked by youngest average age, while six other Ligue1 clubs from France join them in the top 10 positions.

The ranking by the CIES Football Observatory looks at the average age of line-ups fielded so far this season and the percentage of minutes played by footballers who have still to reach their 21st birthday. Monaco, with an average age of 24.3 years old top the Big 5 table while Bayer Leverkusen fielded U21 players for the highest percentage of minutes (24%).

Bayer are just ahead of Barcelona (23%) and are then followed by four Ligue 1 teams (Nice, Rennes, Marseille and Reims).

“Arsenal fielded so far the youngest line-ups in the English Premier League (25.0 years old), while Spezia did so in the Italian Serie A (24.8 years) and Real Sociedad in the Spanish Liga (25.5). At the opposite end for each big-5 league are Lazio (30.3), Elche (29.9), Burnley (29.3), Bochum (28.7) and Clermont Foot (28.0),” highlight the CIES report authors.

In total 1,041 teams were surveyed with 89 clubs not fielding a single U21 player – a list that includes Wolfsburg, Newcastle United, Atlético Madrid, Juventus, West Ham United, Rangers FC, Trabzonspor, Mamelodi Sundowns, Columbus Crew and Al Hilal SFC.

Looking at all teams surveyed, Latvian side FK Metta fielded the youngest line-ups overall (20.2 years old on average) and the Armenia’s BKMA Yerevan top the table for the highest percentage of domestic league minutes played by U21 footballers (79%) – they are second in the average age ranking (20.54).

The rankings also breaks out the clubs by confederation. Singapore’s Young Lions set the benchmark in Asia (third ranked globally) with an average age of 20.96.

To see the full rankings by league and confederation click here.

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