An incredible XI of Football Manager 2022’s best English wonderkids
Football Manager provides you with the opportunity to make your dreams a reality.
From the depths of the English football pyramid, you can drag your local side all the way to the top of the European game, ignoring the fact you’ve accrued a debt the size of a small nation’s GDP in the process.
Often times you find yourself picking up wonderkids from abroad, even when you promised yourself not to be too unrealistic this time. But inevitably in they come from Brazil, Colombia, Paraguay, Nigeria, and South Korea.
Your team quickly goes from a bunch of part-timers in Slough to looking more like a Manchester City non-league parody.
Sometimes, however, it’s nice to include some homegrown talents in your team plus there’s the fact that when you eventually get into Europe you have to make sure you meet the requirements for home-grown players.
So with that in mind here’s an XI of the best English wonderkids in FM22 according to the guys over at FM Scout.
Note we’re playing a 4-3-3 with a holding midfielder and we’ve not included the obvious ones who are already first-team regulars at big clubs, so there’s no Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden, or Jude Bellingham in this team.
GK: Etienne Green
A 21-year-old English goalkeeper playing for St. Etienne and who is called Etienne? This man has all the makings of an FM cult hero.
Green moved to France at the age of four and, despite having been called up to France at youth levels, switched his allegiance to his birth country of England for the Under-21 level.
He is quite literally named after his team as his mother named him after the city she is from.
Green is now starting goalkeeper for St. Etienne and is already drawing interest from Premier League clubs.
Colchester-born Saint-Etienne goalkeeper Etienne Green – who has looked *very* good in Ligue 1 – has elected to play for England over France, according to Ouest France.pic.twitter.com/UKOUejTJdg
— Robin Bairner (@RBairner) August 23, 2021
RB: Tino Livramento
Everyone’s favourite Fantasy Premier League bargain.
It’s no surprise Livramento is one of the best wonderkid right-backs in FM22, given he’s already a first-team regular in the Premier League at just 19-years-old.
He’s an ideal player to bring in if you’re managing a mid-table Premier League side pushing for Europe, but you’ll have to wait until the second season given he just signed for Southampton.
14 crossing, 14 dribbling and 14 work rate make him the perfect complete wing-back. Try and snap him up quickly before Chelsea activate their buy-back clause.
CB: Marc Guehi
Another defender who left Chelsea in the summer, 21-year-old Guehi starts the game at Crystal Palace.
“It wasn’t an easy decision for me to leave Chelsea,” he has since said. “I felt like it was the right decision for me to move to Palace. I wanted to play regular football at a high level in the Premier League and test myself to see how far I can go.”
It’s paying dividends and in FM22 he fast becomes one of the most exciting centre-back options for your team.
15 bravery, 15 tackling and 15 strength at the start of the game are testament to his in-real-life ability. Sign him and watch those stats skyrocket.
– Marc Guéhi goal
– Conor Gallagher assist
This makes me happy pic.twitter.com/buaZu8jeHT
— Alex Goldberg (@AlexGoldberg_) February 5, 2022
CB: Taylor Harwood-Bellis
From three players suited to Premier League sides, Harwood-Bellis is the first on this list who probably would suit a team in the Championship.
The 20-year-old currently starts the game on loan at Anderlecht for the season from parent club Manchester City, although in real life he has recently moved to Stoke for the rest of the 2021-22 campaign.
His standout stats are 15 in determination and 15 in marking. When the second season rolls around, try and tempt him to join on a permanent deal to sure up your backline for a promotion push.
LB: Luke Thomas
Thomas should feel aggrieved that he only has 10 finishing in FM22 given that he scored a worldie of a volley against Manchester United last season.
But despite that, he has a whole host of stats that make him the perfect left-back for your FM22 save; 15 crossing, 16 work rate, and available in the first window, Thomas is an essential signing if you have the money.
Oh, and he’s just 20-years-old.
— Leicester City Türkiye 🇹🇷 (@LEICity_TR) October 13, 2021
DM: Oliver Skipp
Perhaps the most well-known player on this list, Skipp is a regular in the midfield for Tottenham.
At 21, he acts as the perfect holding midfielder in this team, and with 15 passing, 16 bravery, and 17 composure he would be for your team as well.
He’ll be a regular for Spurs in real life over the coming seasons, but if you structure a deal well with instalments you should be able to tempt him to join your side in FM22.
CM: Charlie Patino
Patino is the second-youngest player on this list at just 18-years-old, and he’s certainly held in high regard by Arsenal.
“Of all the years I’ve been scouting, he’s the best kid I’ve ever seen,” Arsenal scout Brian Stapleton once said and that’s represented in-game with 15 technique and 14 first touch.
Sign him on loan with an option to buy for your Championship team and reap the rewards.
CM: Alfie Devine
At 17, Devine makes even Patino seem old.
In January 2021, he became the youngest ever goalscorer in Tottenham’s history when he scored against Marine in the FA Cup.
But even better than that he caused Danny Drinkwater to get sent off in an Under-23s match when he annoyed the Chelsea player with a tough challenge. We’ll ignore the fact Devine saw red too.
The Spurs youngster starts FM22 on a youth contract which means you can pick him up for effectively pennies and you’ll be wanting to do so.
RW: Noni Madueke
It takes a lot of guts to leave your home country at just 16 and even more to succeed, but that’s exactly what Madueke has done.
He left Spurs to sign for Dutch giants PSV, rejecting Manchester United in the process and is now the senior side’s number 10.
“I came here one time and as soon as I came I wanted to sign straight away.” He has since said. “The reason I wanted to go was to progress quicker into the first team. PSV is a top European club. It made so much sense at the time and it makes sense now.”
If you act quickly you could be the team to bring him back to England to great success. With 17 dribbling and 16 flair at just 19-years-old, you’d be a fool not to.
ST: Joe Gelhardt
The English striker with the outright best base potential in FM22, Gelhardt is a serious talent coming out of Leeds.
He has begun getting more first-team minutes this season with Marcelo Bielsa’s side ravaged by injuries and has seized his chances well, recording a goal and three assists in the Premier League.
The youngster is listed for loan at the start of the game and has a range of stats that make him ideal for a Championship side. Sneak an optional fee in the deal and he could be your starting striker all the way to the Champions League final.
⚪️ Joe Gelhardt in the Premier League this season
⏱ 300 minutes played
🎯 2 penalties won
🅰️ 1 assist
⚽️ 1 goal
— Leeds United Live (@liveleedsunited) January 3, 2022
LW: Shola Shoretire
Manchester United’s only player in this team, Shoretire can play anywhere behind the striker but he plays in his preferred left-wing position in this XI.
He should be available on loan at the start of the game or even to buy if you’re clever about it.
The youngster would likely be a Championship side’s starting winger and possesses some brilliant starting stats like 18 flair, 13 dribbling, 13 finishing and more.
He completes a terrifying front three and a team full of names you’ll be hearing of for years to come.
By Patrick Ryan