Jack Grealish Aston Villa 2013

Where are they now? Aston Villa’s five wonderkids from Football Manager 2014

The 2013-14 season is not one especially fondly remembered by Aston Villa fans. When Football Manager 2014 was released in October 2013, the club were well on their way to an underwhelming 15th-place finish and third-round exits in both domestic cups.

This was an era in which they were sliding towards the Championship. They finished 17th the following year before being relegated in bottom place with just 17 points the year after.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom though, with a number of talented prospects on the fringes of Paul Lambert’s squad. FMScout picked out five future wonderkids from FM2014. A decade on, we’ve checked in on them.

Jores Okore

Danish club Nordsjælland are well-known for developing talented youngsters, with Brentford duo Mathias Jensen and Mikkel Damsgaard among their academy graduates.

Danish defender Okore had already made 78 appearances and won the Danish Superliga with the club when he signed for Villa in the summer of 2013. He was just 18 and arrived for a fee of £4million, making him Nordsjælland’s record sale at the time.

He spent his debut season on the fringes of Lambert’s squad before kicking on to play a more prominent role the following year. The young centre-back showed moments of promise but never fully convinced in an underperforming Villa side and returned to Denmark, signing for FC Copenhagen, after their relegation in 2016.

Okore spent four years in Denmark, mostly with AaB, before going to join Chinese Super League outfit Changchun Yatai in 2021. He remains there today.

Joshua Webb

Born and raised in the Midlands town of Halesowen, Webb joined Villa’s academy as a child and progressed up to Under-23s level but never made a senior appearance for the club.

He was released in 2016 and joined Lee Clark’s Kilmarnock on a free, but only made one league appearance for the Scottish club.

The defender has spent the last five years turning out for non-league sides and is currently turning out for Worcester City.

Jordan Graham

Like Webb, Graham never quite made it at his boyhood club after impressing in the academy. But he has made it at a higher level.

After three loans away, Graham joined Wolves in 2015 and then was loaned out a further six times. He’s currently at League One outfit Leyton Orient after representing no fewer than 10 different Football League clubs.

Jack Grealish

Grealish was being talked up as one to watch back in 2013, but his breakthrough with his beloved boyhood club was still some way off – he spent the 2013-14 campaign getting his first regular senior experience out on loan in League One with Notts County.

Fast forward 10 years and he’s certainly lived up to that early promise. The Premier League’s first £100million footballer. The most expensive English signing in history. A back-to-back Premier League champion and a treble-winner to boot. Safe to say he’s done alright for himself – and is enjoying every minute.

Jack Grealish during Manchester City's Champions League-winning celebrations in Istanbul, Turkey, June 2023.

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Callum Robinson

Robinson is only 28 but has had something of a nomadic career after leaving Aston Villa in 2016 in search of more regular opportunities.

He’s had his moments over the years (who remembers him tearing apart Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea?) but the Republic of Ireland international has probably found his level in the Championship. Nowadays he’s leading the line for Cardiff City, which sounds about right.

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