by Joaquìn Maroto

Madrid – Football is a ‘Titanic’ that is sinking while its orchestra continues to play. Youth is moving away from stadiums. Kids can’t even watch 90 minutes in front of the TV. The immediacy of the internet has won the battle. The latest generation of fans prefers YouTube videos, summaries with the best moments of each game, and the top five goals. Everything else is unnecessary. New formulas capable of once again captivating young people are necessary. FIFA is considering restructuring matches into two halves of 30 minutes of actual play, as in the NBA. The major television networks are considering introducing interaction with viewers… But perhaps the solution is easier, and the ‘Golden Boy’ is the best proof of that.

Finding new illusions, evolving as the ‘Golden Boy’ has done, an award that I am proud to be a juror of since its foundation by invitation from my dear and old friend Massimo Franchi, is the best way to recover passion in stadiums. In the ‘Golden Boy’, fans can participate, and the excitement that winning this award produces in the best future footballers, from Musiala to Álvaro Rodríguez, passing through Gavi, Camavinga or Pedri, is only comparable to the pride they feel when lifting the great trophies played in Europe, such as the Champions League, La Liga, Premier League, Bundesliga or Scudetto.

Football is a team sport, but the ball goes from one player to another. The most talented players are highlighted by the press and the public, but they need to have the recognition that the best teams have when they conquer a title. That’s why the ‘Golden Boy’ is so important, because it allows personal goals to be achieved in a sport of many. And this, especially for the youngest, is an incentive for their own improvement. And in the pursuit of excellence, we all win. Fans never regret the price paid for a ticket if they have seen something exceptional, and only the great athletes have that purple within their reach. Awards like the ‘Golden Boy’ help to achieve that goal, and that is why they are necessary in a scenario like the one described in the first paragraph. The ‘Golden Boy’ is the diamond of the ‘Titanic’. It is worth saving.”