Well-known journalist Mykola Nesenyuk recalled the Ukrainian football players who in 2019 became world champions among youth national teams.
"These days, when the strongest national teams are fighting for the title of world champions in the arenas of Qatar, I couldn't help but think of other world champions - Ukrainians! Three and a half years ago, we sincerely rejoiced at the success of our young men, who became world champions among 20-year-olds.
I wanted to believe that the best of those champions would eventually become the leading players of the national team and lead it to at least some success. Much like their predecessors, the 1977 World Under-19 champions, did. The players of that team, Volodymyr Bezsonov, Andriy Bal, Serhiy Baltacha, became the leading performers of Dynamo Kyiv and the USSR national team for many years.
And where are our current champions? Supryaga, Tsitaishvili, Buletsa, Konoplia, Bondar, Khakhlyov, Kornienko, Dryshlyuk, Safronov, Lunin, Riznyk, Bezkorovainy, Chekh, Sikan, Snurnitsyn, Popov, Kashchuk, Ustymenko, Musolitin, Veremienko, Kucheruk? These guys are far from being young men, but none of them have reached the level of real youth world champions, but at least the level of stable players of the Ukrainian national team, which so far does not belong to the world football elite. Want to know why this happened? Then remember who is currently the world champion among twenty-year-olds. Think for yourself without Google. Didn't work? So!
I have no complaints against our world champions. I am grateful to them for that title and for positive emotions. I understand that this historic (for them) victory was possible thanks to the correct strategy of the coaches, the efforts of the players and luck. But that was not the deciding factor! Our youths became world champions because in normal football countries, those that are currently competing for the title of world champions, the best youths did not play, do not play and will not play for their youth national teams. In their twenties, they are already the leading players of their clubs and even national teams. In the same France, no one would even think of asking clubs to send their young stars to the 20-year-old teams. And no one there cares about the not always successful performances of their youth teams.
And we, unfortunately, are still not ready to accurately assess the individual successes of our young people, which happen once every ten years. There is no way we will see that the championship titles among 18-year-olds, 19-year-olds, 20-year-olds, 21-year-olds, etc. is not at all a subject for particular pride or a testament to the high level of football in the country. Youth titles are just an advance for young footballers, who will either take advantage of it or not, remaining "eternal youth". Roughly like our 2019 world champions," Nesenyuk wrote on his Facebook page.