Youri Tielemans: Just Another Belgian Youngster?
After a two-month hiatus, Passion4FM’s fourth installment of “In the Spotlight” series features the Football Manager 2015 Belgian wonderkid Youri Tielemans. At the age of only 17, Youri Tielemans looks to be another great Belgian player to come out of the esteemed youth system of RSC Anderlecht, following former graduates like Vincent Kompany and Romelu Lukaku and also a future star in the “Golden Generation” of Belgian Football. Passion4fm takes a look at what makes the youngster such a special player in real life and his impact in Football Manager 2015.
Who is Youri Tielemans?
Youri Tielemans is primarily a center midfielder who prides himself in his technical ability and flair. Having been already capped for the U-21 Belgium side 6 times at the age of 17 hopes are already high for the Anderlecht graduate.
Born just on the outskirts of Brussels, Tielemans joined his local Anderlecht youth academy in 2002 at the age of just 5.Tielemans progressed well through the renowned youth system, even earning himself his first U-16 Belgium National team Cap at 15 years old. The 2013/2014 season represented a breakthrough for the youngster, making his Pro League debut for Anderlecht at the age of 16 against Lokeren. Two months later, the Belgian received his first cap for the U-21 side in their Euros Qualifier against Northern Ireland. Fast-forward three more months and Tielemans makes his debut in the Champions League, only a few months after his 16th birthday. It is truly a testament to his dedication and progress that he is able to break so many records at such a young age. However, not even Tielemans could have foreseen his pivotal role in the title-winning campaign for Coach Besnik Hasi.
Having not even graduated from High School yet, Tielemans managed to make 35 appearances in his debut season including 6 appearances in the Champions league, performing admirably against some of the top teams in Europe. His wonderful performances in the Anderlecht squad have cemented his bid to become a member of the “Golden Generation” of Belgian football and it will just be a matter of time before he makes his first appearance for the Belgian first team.
This season has also represented a stepping-stone for the Belgian, already appearing in 20 games in the Belgian Pro League and 6 in the Champions league. His consistent performances bode well for the Belgian’s Future, as comparisons between the youngster and fellow Anderlecht graduate, Vincent Kompany, have already begun.
His driven and professional attitude towards his football has culminated in the interest from Premier League sides Arsenal and Liverpool who are reportedly in for the Belgian. Dortmund are also reportedly interested for a deal with Tielemans and Anderlecht are reportedly keen to cash in on one of their biggest assets since Romelu Lukaku’s initial £10m move to Chelsea in 2011, however it appears that Youri’s parents would rather him finish his schooling in Brussels before any big money deals occurs. Only time will tell the future for a kid who’s potential seems endless.
Play style, Strengths and weaknesses
In real life, Tielemans plays with very high confidence and why shouldn’t he? He has broken so many records already at such a tender age and played against the top players from European clubs.
In the Anderlecht squad, Coach Besnik Hasi has primarily paired Tielemans with fellow Belgian Steven Defour in a duo in defensive midfield, a position that Tielemans has been very impressive in. This role has allowed Tielemans creative freedom, with Defour covering, Tielemans is able to roam which allows him to receive the ball from his defenders and carry the ball with him. Although in a deep role, this has not stopped Tielemans from showcasing his range of passing, especially long balls, which is rare for such a young player to be so confident but Tielemans appears to be playing like a world-beater. He seems to be oblivious to the fact that he is playing against players like Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexis Sanchez.
You have to dare to impose yourself if you want to become great. I’ve always had the soul of a leader. Age is unimportant.
Tielemans after game against Arsenal
Tielemans appears to be a natural leader and someone who is certain of making his way to the top of world football. Tielemans form has made him un-droppable this season, which is something that Youri knows he cannot take for granted. Solid game time is something young players crave and this will be critical for his development. Tielemans is someone who is still quite raw, his inexperience shows in his performance on the pitch through his decision-making, but through the solid game time he will get, there is no doubt he will develop to become one of the greats.
Youri Tielemans Football Manager 2015 Player Profile
Youri Tielemans is a natural center midfielder in Football Manager 2015. He can easily become one of the best in Belgian football if he is developed correctly. His versatility is useful, as he is competent in a variety of positions but enjoys his position in the center midfield as his preferred. One thing of note is his relative inexperience with his left foot, which may restrict his ability on the pitch. The Belgian being at such a young age training him in his other positions may be useful for his development. (Training him as an attacking midfielder/Trequartista is highly recommended)
Football Manager portrays Tielemans as a very technical playmaker, who has a very high potential in the game, one of the highest in FM. His stats on his profile show a youngster who is very quick with his acceleration and his top speed. Although he is slightly lacking in strength and stamina, Tielemans stands at 176m (5’7 ft.) and only still 17, Tielemans has plenty of time to grow physically as he becomes stronger and adapts to European football.
Given his young age, his mental attributes are great. Some stats to note are his high determination, which is critical to youth development and performance on the pitch, his vision, which allow him to observe his teammates movements and pick the right pass, and finally his flair, which exemplify his unique talent, that separates him from other midfielders. His technical attributes also are fantastic. His high passing attribute combined with his vision allows him to thread that breakthrough ball that can change a game. Tielemans also is a set-piece maestro already and can be depended on to win you that game through a well-rehearsed set piece.
Something that does appear to be lacking with this youngster is his ability to contribute defensively. A center midfielder is needed to contribute defensively and trackback for a formation to be successful, or else the opposition will overload the defenders. This is why it is highly recommended for Tielemans to be trained in the attacking midfielder/Trequartista role instead, as this is where Tielemans shines. In these position Tielemans is able to maintain an advanced position throughout the game and be the main focal of attack. There he is able to receive the ball and use his technical ability to take on opposition players and either shoot or play a pass.
As mentioned earlier, it is still possible to play Tielemans in his natural center midfielder role. It is recommended that when attempting this, you partner Tielemans with a “destroyer” defensive midfielder who is more interested in defending and who can cover Tielemans as he makes his surging runs at the opposition.
Tielemans has endless potential on FM, if given the right amount of game time and training it is very likely that he will become one of the best players in the game and dominate in all the top leagues of Europe.Overall, on Football Manager Tielemans looks like a complete attacking midfielder already at the age of 17.