When a number of ‘youth’ teams were added to the Belgian second tier last season, there was skepticism amongst some Belgian football observers as to how they would add to the competitiveness of the league. It was expected that in many cases they would be the whipping boys of the league. However, most of the sides were competitive last season, with Club NXT (Club Brugge) even making it into the promotion play-offs. They are not allowed to get promoted, yet it was a sign that perhaps this experiment was going to work.
Fast forward to this season, and Jong Genk seem to be taken full advantage of blooding some youngsters against seasoned professionals. One of these that is turning heads is 15-year-old Konstantinos Karetsas. His three goals have all been sensational in different ways, from a long range rocket against Dender to a mazy dribble against Oostende. The teenager is certainly catching the eye, and his range of passing is also impressive. His only assist so far this season was an inch perfect ball to Tanzanian striker Kelvin John to beat promotion hopefuls SK Beveren.
One to watch! 15-year-old Konstantinos Karetsas with a wonderful pass to Tanzanian forward Kelvin John to open the scoring for Jong Genk against SK Beveren 🇹🇿pic.twitter.com/rRj5d8tYIW— Get Belgian & Dutch Football News (@GBeNeFN) August 13, 2023
15-year-old Konstantinos Karetsas with his first professional goal 🇧🇪🔥pic.twitter.com/w4eZCsmcpz— Get Belgian & Dutch Football News (@GBeNeFN) September 2, 2023
15-year-old Konstantinos Karetsas adds another to his ever growing highlight reel for Jong Genk 🔥pic.twitter.com/5qIheVxhOw— Get Belgian & Dutch Football News (@GBeNeFN) September 24, 2023
If you haven’t heard of Karetsas yet, be prepared for him to be considered one of the next wonderkids to come out of Belgian football. For Genk, they will certainly be putting a hefty price tag on the youngster, while allowing him to get even more game time in the second tier. There is no rush on their part to blood him into the first team. However, if he continues to add to his ever growing highlight reel, expect to see him in the Pro League next season.