In recent years, the Turkish league has produced some great young players who top European clubs have snapped up. There is the Turkish Ozil Arda Guler, the Ajax star centre back Ahmetcan Kaplan and Galatasaray wunderkind Efe Akman. And now a 16-year-old left-back has joined the list. At such a young age, Yasin Ozcan has become an integral part of the Kasımpasa senior side and has made several appearances in the Turkish top flight.
Ozcan has also broken several records in his first season alone, and now top European clubs have started to take an interest in acquiring the teenager’s services. And while his team may be stuck in 12th, Ozcan is having a stellar debut season.
His rise has also been noticed by the Turkish football association, which have given him a run of games in both the under-16 and under-17 teams. So, who is Yasin Ozcan, and how good is he?
Who is Yasin Ozcan?
Yasin Ozcan was born on April 20, 2006, in Kagıthane, a northern area of Istanbul. Ozcan showed a remarkable interest in football and at the age of nine, joined the local club İl Ozel İdaresispor. He would speed the next two years there before joining Karadolap Genclikspor in 2017.
Still only 12, Ozcan showed maturity, talent and class far beyond his years. And this made him a transfer target for all the top clubs in Turkey. However, it was Kasımpasa, one of the smallest clubs in Turkey, which ultimately won the race.
Ozcan joined the club in 2017 and has been there ever since. After joining his new team, Ozcan kept up the pace of his development, progressing through various age groups. Ozcan made his debut for the senior squad before the under-19s.
Ozcan made his debut for the senior team on August 8, 2022, against Basaksehir at the age of 16 years. After making an appearance for the first two games, he was sent to the under-19s, where he played five games before being recalled to the senior side and has been a part of it ever since.
🕵️LCB: A young player only 16 years old who has already played 19 matches this season in all competitions for Kasimpasa, Yasin Ozcan (16 years old). A very interesting young prospect.#scouting #Kasimpasa pic.twitter.com/g3lF9nSYHW
— PanoScout 🔍 (@PanoScout) April 6, 2023
Yasin Ozcan stats
When Yasin Ozcan scored his first goal on January 21, 2023, against Basaksehir, he became the youngest player ever to score in the league that season. This was a testament to his incredible talent. Ozcan also has an assist to his name, which came against Giresunspor.
Ozcan has also been brilliant at defending, winning 1.4 tackles per 90 minutes, a good return. His interception numbers are even better at 2.1 per 90 minutes. Moving on to clearances, he averages 1.6 of them per 90 minutes.
Ozcan has also won more than 50 per cent of his duels, be it on the ground or aerial, which shows that he has been improving with time.
His incredible performance also has led him to be called to the Turkish national football team for the under-17 European Championship qualification, where he helped Turkey qualify in the first round. These are vital stats for a 16-year-old player in his first season for the senior side.
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Yasin Ozcan’s playing style and potential
Since Kasımpasa is a mid-tier club, they spent most of the match playing in their half, which is evident in his heatmap. This means that Ozcan, despite being a left-back, has to curb his attacking instinct, focus more on defending, and ensure that the opposition doesn’t exploit his side to create chances.
His defensive awareness is on par with a player who has years of senior-team football experience under his belt. Ozcan is also not shy from making a last-ditch tackle; such is his confidence in his skill.
On top of that, Ozcan also used his tall frame to good effect both in winning duels and using his tall stride to quickly cover a lot of ground up and down the pitch, contributing to both the attack and defence.
Yasin Ozcan transfer news
Any player who is part of their senior-team football at the age of 16 is bound to be a hell of a talent and will attract the eyes of several clubs. However, Kasımpasa know that if they manage to keep hold of the teenager, he will truly become a star in two to three seasons.
If this happens, Ozcan’s value will skyrocket, bringing in a lot of money for the club. So, for now, it is highly unlikely that Ozcan will switch clubs, but when he does, we can be sure he will be a far better player.