Football Manager 2018 has been out for a few months, but if it landed in your Christmas stocking, you may be on the look for some help in who to add to your transfer shortlist.
Accompanying the arrival of the franchise’s latest instalment are a host of articles detailing the top 50 wonderkids you need to look out for.
Scouting the sheer number of players can overwhelming and narrowing it down to a select few is stressful. With this in mind, we’ve looked to shorten these lists down. In this particular article we’ve taken a look at attackers you definitely want in your squad this time around.
We’ve excluded the obvious wonderkids – Kylian Mbappeé and Ousmane Dembélé are now household names – and instead listed attackers who vary in price in an attempt to give managers the best opportunity of snagging at least one of them, even if you aren’t at the helm of one of Europe’s biggest clubs.
The Usual Suspects
Dolberg burst onto the scene last season with Ajax, leading the line of Peter Bosz’s youthful side as they went all the way to the Europa League final. He was a firm favourite in Football Manager 2017 and will no doubt be at the top of people’s lists in 2018.
The one-time Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund, Barcelona and Liverpool transfer target is valued at £10million at the start of the game but it will take closer to £30millon to convince Ajax they should part ways with their Danish forward.
Romero is somewhat of a Football Manager legend despite being just 18 years old. He’s been one of the must buy strikers for a couple of years now and always ends up being one of the best forwards on the game – so why should 2018 be any different?
The brutish Argentine was linked to Arsenal and Liverpool in the real world and both clubs could do with him on the game, too. Valued at just under £2million, he could be a potential bargain if developed properly.
The Obvious choices
The towering Swede has been tipped as the man to replace Zlatan Ibrahimović in the national team down the line. Borussia Dortmund pipped Real Madrid to the now-18-year-old’s signature last January. The Bundesliga team are taking their time with him, after all they do know a little something about developing talent.
Possibly available on loan at the start of the game, he could well be a clever signing for a mid-table Premier League club. If you’re prepared to take the gamble and offer big money for him then there’s no reason he can’t develop into one of the best on the game.
Tipped in our series as one of Europe’s rising stars, Cutrone has impressed for AC Milan this season. An impressive feat for the 19-year-old when you consider how much the Serie A side spent on reinforcements this summer.
He’s one of a number of Italian forwards on this list with the national team hopefully having a frontline to rival that of Filippo Inzaghi, Alessandro Del Piero and Christian Vieri in a couple of years.
Though it’s unlikely Milan will sell in the first season, he may be available for loan and the chances of signing him in the second season will increase if Serie A’s sleeping giants manage to keep hold of André Silva.
Pietro Pellegri has already lit up Serie A this season, becoming the first 16-year-old to score twice in a game in a major European league.
The Genoa starlet has been linked with Manchester United and Chelsea, as well as Juventus. Over the next few summers he will continuously be linked with moves to bigger clubs. There are suggestions that he’s the best wonderkid on the game and, like his compatriot Cutrone, was named in our Europe’s emerging talents series.
Due to his age at the start of the game you’re able to directly open up contract negotiations with the forward. However, he is fairly attached to Genoa and outright rejects a move before you’re even able to discuss wages.
After a season or two he’s available for around the £20million mark, a bargain for the best striker in the game.
As we exclusively revealed in June, Liverpool are one of the many clubs with a serious interest in Bayer Leverkusen’s Havertz. The Merseysiders watched the 18-year-old score four goals for Germany during a recent under-19 match and interest in the versatile midfielder remains strong.
He’s unattainable at the beginning of the game, with Bayer Leverkusen demanding in the region of £190million. However, they will negotiate during the summer of 2018 and Havertz will push for a move which will see you land him for £40million.
The Wildcard Choices
Sousa is a relative unknown but he could be the shrewdest signing of Football Manager 2018. He starts off at Porto and can be signed for as little as £5million.
Though he’s not going to walk into your first team from the off, managing his playing time and putting him on a individual training regime tailored to his strengths will see him develop into one of the best creative midfielders on the game.
Just look at his stats, he could already do a job for a Championship side.
The third and final Italian striker on this list. Pinamonti starts life at Inter Milan but for £10million could be yours during the first summer on the game. It may sound steep for a 18-year-old with next to no first team experience but as you can see from his stats, he can do a job immediately.
He’s much cheaper than his two compatriots on the list and, though he might not reach their lofty heights, he’s more than good enough to be a leading striker for a club in the Champions League. A real bargain.
Timo Werner is the centre of attention in Germany right now and looks set to lead the line during the 2018 World Cup. The German’s have had a dearth of strikers over current years but could soon find themselves with two of the best in Europe battling it out for a start.
Werner will be joined by Werder Bremen’s Eggestein. The Bundesliga club have a lot of hope for the 19-year-old but an offer of £7.5million is good enough to tempt them into parting ways with the striker.