RISING STAR: Ismaïla Sarr
His latest brilliant goal in FC Metz's derby win over AS Nancy Lorraine on Saturday was a further indication that Ismaïla Sarr is going to be one to look out for in the years ahead.
The 19-year-old scored his fourth goal in 10 games since early February in Metz's 2-1 defeat of Nancy and it was another special strike too. He also netted a stunner in a 2-2 draw in Saint-Etienne in March and topped that with his goal in the recent draw with SM Caen.
"It's one of the great goals, it was his first touch as well. When you see a strike like that it's wonderful. People will watch it over and over, perhaps not all over the world but in France at least," Metz coach Philippe Hinschberger told The Ligue 1 Show on beIN Sports after the latter effort.
Fast, skilful and balanced, Sarr is the latest Senegalese gem to blossom at Metz. Like Papiss Cissé Sadio Mané and Diafra Sakho before him, Sarr moved to Lorraine from the Generation Foot academy in Senegal, and this season the teenager has found his feet in France.
"He runs at opponents, he's quick and he's someone you don't like to defend against, so we like to have him. I'm happy for him because he's a young player. He's a shy boy and we need to look after him," added Hinschberger.
'Hard to catch him'
Already a full international, Sarr impressed for Senegal at the Africa Cup of Nations in January and he hasn't looked back since.
"Ismaïla is really on form. I don't know if it's because of the Nations Cup, but he's been superb since he came back. He's been sharp in training, he's got a great touch and when he gets to stretch his legs it's hard to catch him," his coach said.
As well as his goals, the winger caused so much panic in the Paris Saint-Germain defence during a recent meeting with the reigning champions, helping to set up a rousing finale in a game Metz eventually lost 3-2, that Hinscberger had to explain his decision to start Sarr from the bench.
"I want to be clear about this, Ismaïla started on the bench because he wasn't 100 percent - even if it looked like he was when he came on. I'm sorry to those people who can't understand but I have a squad to manage and we have to listen to players," he said.
The Metz fans will hope to see plenty more of Sarr from the start in future, especially after his latest heroics.