Where are they now? Tottenham’s 7 wonderkids from Football Manager 2014
For all the highs and lows Tottenham have gone through over the past decade, their status today was similar to when Football Manager 2014 was released back in October 2013.
Spurs had just sold their star forward to a European giant, with Gareth Bale’s move to Real Madrid mirroring Harry Kane’s switch to Bayern Munich this summer.
The club had just signed a creative midfield lynchpin (Christian Eriksen then, James Maddison now), but weren’t considered title contenders. But, just like in 2023, Spurs were seen as capable of beating anybody on their day.
We’ve taken a look through the FM Scout database to pick out Tottenham’s seven wonderkids from Football Manager 2014 and looked to see whether the real-life players have lived up to their early potential a decade later.
The young centre-back was loaned out twice during Mauricio Pochettino’s first season, but eventually left Spurs to join Werder Bremen for just €300,000.
Veljkovic has since proven to be a hit in the Bundesliga, establishing himself as a regular for Werder and earning himself over 20 caps for Serbia. He featured in all three of their group stage outings at Qatar 2022.
Despite not making the grade at Spurs, Veljkovic has clearly done well for himself.
Ogilvie started his career at Spurs and was an unused substitute during a Europa League match against Benfica in March 2014.
But that was as close as the defender got to the first team picture at White Hart Lane. Loan spells at Stevenage and Gillingham followed, before Ogilvie joined the latter on a permanent basis in 2019.
A competent Football League defender, the 27-year-old has been at Portsmouth for the last three seasons as they look to escape League One.
Always love a goal that gets a teammate putting their hands on their head in disbelief: Connor Ogilvie in Gillingham’s win at Charlton pic.twitter.com/Xkk78CttoL
— James Dart (@James_Dart) February 13, 2021
“I would be a hypocrite to say that I would not like to be there, and I am not a hypocrite,” Bentaleb told The Independent in February 2019, reflecting on his time at Tottenham. “But this is football.”
The Algeria international looked set to become an important squad member at Spurs, starting the 2015 League Cup final, but fell out with Mauricio Pochettino before being sold to Schalke in 2017.
Now 28, Bentlaeb is playing in Ligue 1 with Lille. That feels about right.
McEvoy is still in his 20s – he was born a few months after Brazil won the 1994 World Cup – but has long retired from the sport.
After a significant number of loan spells, the winger joined York permanently in January 2016 before being released at the end of the 2015-16 season.
The Irishman moved to back his home country for a brief spell with Waterford but opted to move back to England and commit himself to a new full-time job to support his young family.
Even the biggest Spurs fan in your life might be scratching their head at the inclusion of Coulibaly here; the striker never played for the club, was sold to Bari in 2014 and is now playing for ES Setif in Algeria.
Spells at Peterborough, Kilmarnock, Al Alhy, Patrick Thistle and Etoile Sportive du Sahel in Tunisia are probably a more accurate indicator of his potential than any Football Manager ranking. They can’t get it right every time.
Tottenham and England’s record goalscorer. Not bad.
Another striker prospect who never kicked a ball in anger for Tottenham’s first team, Coulthirst was sold to Peterborough in 2016 after a number of loan spells away from White Hart Lane.
The most prolific spell of his career came at Barnet, where Coulthirst scored 33 goals in three seasons. Aged 28, he’s playing in the National League South for Ebbsfleet United.