Nine of the world's youngest big sports stars

Last updated at 11:55
16-year-old Ki-Jana Hoever.Press Association
16-year-old Ki-Jana Hoever made FA Cup history on Monday night when he became Liverpool's youngest FA Cup player in history

On Monday night, 16-year-old Ki-Jana Hoever made history when he became Liverpool's youngest FA Cup player in history.

He came on the pitch during Liverpool's clash with Wolves, which saw the Premier League leaders go crashing out of the competition.

But he's not the first young sporting superstar to make a name for themselves from an early age.

Martin Odergaard
Martin Odergaard.Getty Images

In 2015, Norwegian footballer Martin Odergaard hit the news by signing for Spanish giants Real Madrid aged just 16.

When he was 15 and 253 days old, Odergaard became the youngest player at the time ever to play in a European Championship footy qualifier when he appeared for Norway.

Lucy Li
Lucy Li.Getty Images

US golfer Lucy Li became the youngest ever person to qualify for the US Women's Open when she managed to win a spot in the 2014 competition at the age of just 11.

She didn't manage to make it though to the second part of the event, but certainly made a name for herself as a budding star of the future.

She took the record from Lexi Thompson who was 12 years, four months and 18 days old when she played in the 2007 US Women's Open.

Matthew Briggs
Matthew Briggs.Getty Images

Matthew Briggs is the youngest person ever to play in the Premier League.

He made his Fulham debut aged just 16 years and 65 days back in 2007, coming on as a substitute in their match against Middlesbrough.

He went on to play for Millwall and Colchester and in March 2018, it was announced that Barnet signed the defender on a non-contract basis.

Martina Hingis
16-year-old Swiss star Martina Hingis winning Wimbledon in 1997.Getty Images

If you're a tennis player, winning Wimbledon is seen as the ultimate prize.

When 16-year-old Swiss star Martina Hingis won the women's single title in 1997, she became the youngest ever winner of the grass court Grand Slam.

She'd already been crowned the youngest junior Wimbledon champion aged 13 in 1994.

Erraid Davies
13-year-old Erraid DaviesGetty Images

In 2014, 13-year-old Erraid Davies became Scotland's youngest ever Commonwealth competitor in the para-swimming competition.

She went on to finish third in the women's 100m breaststroke, taking home a bronze medal.

"I didn't really know how to tell my schoolmates," she told BBC Breakfast. "But they know now and I've had lots of messages.

"It was just amazing walking out to a home crowd. It was really loud! I knew there was a chance of a medal so I just kind of went for it."

Theo Walcott
Theo Walcott.Getty Images

Everton player Theo Walcott became the youngest footballer ever to play for England when he played against Hungary in May 2006.

Aged 17 years and 75 days, Walcott had never played in the Premier League and had only played 13 matches of senior football. He then went on to be picked in the England squad for that summer's World Cup in Germany.

He went on to play for Arsenal for 12 years, where he scored 108 goals in 397 appearances, before moving on to Everton.

George Ford
George Ford playing for Leicester.ALLSPORT/Getty Images

Despite rugby being an extremely physical game, George Ford proved he was tough enough at just the age of 16 years and 237 days when he became the youngest person to play professional rugby in England.

He went on to play for Leicester Tigers, making his debut in November 2009 before moving to Bath in 2013.

In February 2017, Leicester resigned the England fly-half paying a record fee between two English clubs to buy him out of his deal with Bath.

Tara Lipinski
Tara Lipinski.Getty Images

Imagine having an Olympic gold medal at the age of just 15.

Well, that's what happened to Tara Lipinski, who became the youngest woman to ever win a Winter Olympic gold.

The American figure skater took home the medal at the 1998 winter games in Nagano, Japan.

She now works as a commentator for the sport.


This entry is now closed for comments.

  • View all (1)
  • Comment number 1. Posted by Hope

    8 Jan 2019 19:06
    OMG, They have seriously got natural talent!!

    Yay first comment!