Get player recommendations for FM22, as we give you the Football Manager 2022 players to watch. Here you’ll find player’s who have performed great so far in the season and which deserves an upgrade for FM22 release. You will find a mix of potential FM22 bargains we believe YOU need to know of and hot prospects.
When Robert Lewandowski was signed for €4.5Mill by Borussia Dortmund in June 2010, few knew about the Polish striker’s extraordinary talent and how his career would pan out. Even Sporting Gijon rejected the offer to sign the Polish second and third league top goalscorer in the past two seasons.
Today most would agree it’s one of the best bargain transfers in football of all time. At least his 316 goals in 413 appearances are a great testimony of that.
With Football Manager 2022 on the horizon, it’s time to take closer on the potential FM22 bargains. Here we have reviewed some of the biggest leagues in Europe and South America to identify great players to watch in Football Manager 2022 according to their current league performances.
I’ve browsed through leagues that are known to be great nations to find Football Manager 2022 bargains by assessing player statistics and data for players under the age of 25 with a player value of less than €25Mill, according to Transfermarkt as of September 22.
The leagues I have focused on for this first part are Belgium, Holland, Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Spain, England (Championship) and France. Then for the second part, my plan is to put focus on Scandinavian Under-23 talents that you need to watch for Football Manager 2022.
Attacking Players to Watch
Noa Lang /22/ Club Brugge
Noa Lang is already on the radar of many bigger European clubs lately, as both Arsenal, AC Milan and PSG reportingly are monitoring the Dutch forward’s progress.
The player is a product of the renowned Ajax Academy and started off his Ajax career by scoring a hattrick in his first league start against Twente as a right-winger. His Ajax career ended somehow surprisingly at 9 appearances after lack of trust, minor injuries, and personal unhappiness over game time.
The versatile forward was therefore loaned out to Club Brugge ahead of the 2020/21 season, and the loan deal was made permanent for €6Million this summer. Why Ajax would let the incredibly talented homegrown player go is a major question? I bet Ajax directors may regret it now as his recent statistics are simply outstanding!
At Club Brugge, Noa Lang’s career has really taken off. Last season he scored 17 goals and made 11 assists over 38 appearances in 5 different competitions and tournaments. His 16 goals for Club Brugge did not only lead him to become the club’s top scorer but also ended up with him picking up the Belgian Young Footballer of the Year award.
This season he has continued his magnificent form by being the main creative force along with Charles de Ketelaere. He’s been used by Philippe Clement both as a left inverted winger in a 4-3-3 formation, a center-forward in a 3-5-2 formation, and a shadow striker / attacking midfielder in a 4-3-2-1 formation.
Over 753 minutes of action (9 appearances), he has scored 3 goals and produced 4 assists. That’s one behind former Spanish wonderkid Sérgio Gomez, who tops the chart with most assists in Jupiler Pro.
The technically gifted attacker stands out for his ability to find pockets of spaces and make himself available in front of the penalty box. As he roams between the lines, he often gets into goalscoring opportunities to take shots or make those beautiful through balls. His vision and quick-thinking within the final third have seen him produce 2.0 key passes per match with 7 big chances being created only in the Jupiler Pro League.
His unpredictability and creativity with the ball at his feet make him a difficult player to come up against. He got the quickness and agility to cut inside with the ball and take on his opponents by making dribbles. Currently, he has produced an average of 2.9 dribbles per game! At his best moments, it’s not unnatural to see him making the most dribbles in the match. For instance, he managed 11 successful dribble attempts against OH Leuven.
It’s not only in one-on-one situations and in possession of the ball, the versatile Dutch attacker stands out. He’s a player with total focus on getting into dangerous areas where he can affect the game – either he makes darting runs behind the opposition defensive line to destabilize the block or breaks free from his marker with a one-two. His attacking mentality has seen him made a huge impact inside the penalty box. Out of 2.6 shots per game, 2.0 shots are taken inside the penalty box with an average of 0.9 shots on target.
In the last Champions League match against Paris SG he recorded the most dribbles in the match (5) and finished off 6 shots, in addition to 1 key pass – something that made him be awarded the player of the match!
This means that he would be a great player for any side looking to work the ball into the box.
His flair and smartness with movements, direct running and determination to attack open spaces are one of the factors why clubs are acquiring the interest of this attacking gifted player.
Potential Improved Attributes for FM22: Finishing, Vision, Dribbling, Pace, Flair, Off the ball, Anticipation and Long Shots
New Traits: Plays One Two, Cuts Inside
Potential FM22 Value: 15-20Mill
Current Transfermarkt Value: 22Mill
Yeremi Pino /18/ Villarreal
We continue this article to look at another winger. Yeremi Pino could be described as the younger version of Noa Lang. A player with great versatility and technical skills he might turn out to become a Football Manager 2022 bargain wonderkid!
The young Spanish wonderkid moved from his childhood club Las Palmas at the age of 15 and rejected an offer from FC Barcelona to get an easier path to the first team by signing for Villarreal. The winger broke through for Villarreal last season by receiving 786 match minutes. In the 2020/21 season, he scored 3 goals and produced 1 assist over a total of 23 appearances.
He started the 2021 UEFA Europe League final and became the youngest Spanish player to start a major European final.
This season he has started 4 matches out of 5 appearances. Over 323 minutes played he has scored 1 goal and produced 3 assists. The teenager stands out for his technical brilliance and close control. With his low center of gravity and ability to get past his marker with tricky and flair he manages to get the ball into dangerous situations – either he plays a through pass that sets up his teammates or crosses the ball from the byline.
So far he’s produced 1.2 dribbles per game and created 0.6 key passes and 2 big chances in just a handful of matches. The player favors looking for a pass rather than shooting at goal as he only takes 0.8 shots per game.
The player has improved his defensive abilities within the last season and could be a great candidate as a wide midfielder or inverted winger in a 4-4-2 or as a wide winger in a 3-4-3. He’s capable of covering the entire flank (right or left) and got the anticipation to close down and intercept passes as well as having the positioning to avoid crosses coming into the box. Until now he averages 1.6 tackles per game by winning possession 0.6 of the time.
While he definitely to continue working on his defensive organization, Yeremi Pino is definitely one to watch in your first Football Manager 2022 save.
Potential Improved Attributes for FM22: Tackling, Off the ball, Passing, Flair, Anticipation and Pace
Potential FM22 Value: <12.5Mill
Current Transfermarkt Value: 15Mill
Most Tackles per game in Italian Serie A
Nicolás Domínguez / 23 / Bologna: 3.7
Petar Stojanovic / 25 / Empoli: 3.3
Pawel Dawidowicz / 26 / Hellas Verona: 3.2
José Manuel López /20/ Lanus – Striker
The Argentinian center-forward is one who might receive a major upgrade for Football Manager 2022, not only for his positional suitabilities but also in regard to technical and mental attributes.
In fact, if looking him up in FM21 your immediate impression will be that he’s quite an average player with decent potential. Frankly, he would simply be considered as a fairly decent Championship player. I believe most of his FM21 player profile is wrong, and that his player profile NEEDS a make-over.
José López received his debut for the first team in the Copa de la Liga Profesional group B match against Defensa y Justicia on February 20th, 2021 by receiving 7 minutes of action. His first goal came in a Copa Sudamericana match against Venezuelan club Aragua FC, meanwhile, his first starting appearance came against the Colombian club La Equidad Seguros in the Copa Sudamericana where he produced an assist.
Since then, he has not looked back!
He was trusted with a starting appearance in the first game week of Liga Profesional playing as a center-forward alongside the league’s top scorer José Sand in a 4-4-2 formation. He opened his scoring account with a beautiful header where he timed his run perfectly at the corner and hang in the air before placing the ball in the back of the net. In the next round, López was at it again by netting his second goal in two appearances. This time with a powerful left-foot shot inside the penalty box in the 94th minute.
José López is a dangerous player at set-pieces. Due to his brilliance at making timing runs and jumping reach he has won 3.8 aerial duels per game in the league. It has resulted in 6 goals from headers out of 9 total goals in all competitions. In the 2021/22 season of the Liga Profesional, he has scored 5 out of 7 with his head.
Currently, he has received 1003 minutes of action over 13 appearances, something that will aid his development even more! He has started the match on 12 occasions and formed a great partnership with veteran striker José Sand.
The 190cm tall pressing forward or target man has been awarded the player of the match on two occasions; against Aldosivi (goal and assist) and in the defeat against Newell’s Old Boys 8 days ago.
In that match, he proved his ability to find space, or create space for himself, by making subtle twists and simple dribbles to come in a better goal-scoring position. So far he’s taken 2.0 shots per game – most of these coming from powerful shots with his left foot.
He’s brilliant at making decoy runs, either dropping deep before accelerating forward with great speed. His directness and determination to gain ground and get the ball into dangerous areas – either with a simple through ball or by dribbling his way forward are brilliant. Currently, he averages 1 dribble per game, but his attacking instinct has seen him being fouled 1.8 times per match.
López is more of a finisher than a passer. I assume he could become a good deep-lying forward (attack), but his passing accuracy is not the most impressive. He tends to find teammates with his passes in 63.3% of the time – something that is a bit different from his passing level in FM21.
Potential Improved Attributes for FM22: Finishing, Heading, Long shots, Decisions, Off the ball, Teamwork, Work Rate, Aggression, Finishing, Strength
New Traits: Tries First Time shots
Potential FM22 Value: €250K
Current Transfermarkt value: €75K
FM22 Bargain Playmakers
John Swift /26/ Reading – Central Midfielder
The previous Chelsea academy player has since 2016 been an important player for Reading. Coming out as one of the oldest players I’ll be looking at in this list of FM22 players to watch, he stands out for his ability to create chances and roam around the pitch to become a passing maestro.
The versatile all-around central midfielder is amongst the top 3 players in the Championship in regard to attacking returns as he has scored 7 goals and produced 5 assists over 876 match minutes. In fact, he has participated in 75% of all goals scored by Reading this season, which proves how important he is for Readings ambitions to finish at the top half.
He’s been in the team of the week five times and has played brilliantly in the roaming playmaker role in central midfield or advanced playmaker role in AMC-strata within Veljo Paunovic’s 4-2-3-1 formation.
The players attacking contribution has been just brilliant. With 0.7 goals scored per game and 2.9 key passes per match, John Swift can both create chances and finish them off. By making 53.4 passes per game he creates the most passes together with Danny Drinkwater (the former Man United Academy player).
Reading’s #10 is a very well-rounded player who excels with the ball at his feet whether it’s by taking his opponent on by making dribbles to attract the opponent’s focus and create space for others, or to make subtle off the ball runs to get the ball. In Championship he averages at 2.7 dribbles per game, where 59% of them are successful. Whether he uses his dribbling to keep control of the ball or advance forward with it, he has the ability to do that job.
When the team is in possession, he’s great at finding pockets of space to connect and interchange passes. He has made 71.8 touches per game with a passing accuracy of 84.6.%. His creativity and vision is one thing, but his also an important player when the team is entering the final third.
By moving into zone 14, either with the ball at his feet sprinting towards the penalty box or positioning himself there, after a few quick passes, John Swift often tends to come in situations where he can finish off the attacks. He’s made a total of 2.3 shots per game (1.6 shots on target). With shots often coming inside the penalty box and having the composure to place the shots, he scores some lovely goals. His finishing technique and balance make it seem so easy, but in reality, it’s really good effort and skills.
What makes John Swift into a great FM22 bargain is his contract is set to expire in June 2022. This means that if you make inquiries about his interest at the start of the first season in FM22, you might be able to get him on a free transfer in January if the contract isn’t renewed.
Current Transfermarkt value: €4Mill
Most Shots per game Sky Bet Championship
Aleksander Mitrovic / 27/ Fulham: 4.6 (10 goals)
Ben Díaz / 22 / Blackburn: 3.5 (9 goals)
Viktor Gyökeres / 23 / Coventry: 3.5 (7 goals)
Joey Veerman / 22 / Heerenveen
The next up on this brief list of potential FM22 playmaker bargains is Dutch defensive midfielder Joey Veerman – a player coming through the Volendam Academy.
Joey Veerman tends to influence the game in a bit deeper position than John Swift. This means that he will be less likely to take up positions in zone 14, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be a great contribution to your team. A perfect player for the deep-lying playmaker role, Joey Veerman’s abilities to play either as a DM or MC can make him a great signing for anyone looking to play in a 3-4-3, 3-5-2 or 4-2-3-1.
The Dutch playmaker has made 10 appearances so far this season (Eredivisie and KNVB Cup) and have played all 90 minutes. Last year he produced 10 assists and scored 7 goals, meanwhile this season he has scored 1 and produced 4 assists – meaning he’s on his way to copy a similar feat.
His ability to retain possession is great. With 59.6 successful passes per game, he links up the defense with the attacking unit. He stands out for his vision and ability to create chances. So far he makes 3.3 key passes per game and created 3 major chances. That’s far better than Paul Pogba (2.2 key passes).
Joey Veerman has a great passing range – able to switch play to the other side (2.4 crosses per game), (0.3 through balls per game) or make penetrating passes from deep (2.4 long balls per game). His tendency to make passes from deep behind the opponent’s defensive line could resemble the style of play to Kevin de Bruyne.
The player is also capable of destabilising the defensive block not only with passes and through balls, but also by running with the ball. He makes 1.7 successful dribbles per game and has the suitability to play as an attacking midfielder AP-S or AM-S.
It’s not only his vision and teamwork that stand out. The player has also become far better than what FM21 suggests to be a defensive force. So far he has made 1.7 tackles per game, 1 interception per game and 1.3 clearances.
Potential Improved Attributes for FM22: Tackling, Anticipation, First touch, Crossing, Dribbling
Potential FM22 Value: €5-10Mill
Current Transfermarkt value: €8.5Mill
Nicolás Castro /20/ Newell’s Old Boys
To recommend a potential FM22 Argentinian wonderkid bargain it was a close call between Alan Velasco (19) and Nicolás Castro. Since Alan Velasco may be more of a familiar name and Nicolás Castro outperforming Velasco in terms of stats it was in the end an easy decision.
The Argentinian attacking midfielder has received 1101 match minutes so far this season and tops the chart of Liga Profesional players with the most assists (5), with Velasco at the second place with 4. He’s been awarded the man of the match in 3 out of 13 appearances.
Both players have an equal accuracy in their passing (76.2%) but Castro is far more dangerous in front of the box – by scoring more goals and making far more key passes per game. In fact, Castro has scored 5 goals this season after producing 1.9 shots per game. The attacking creativity and ability to create chances has seen Castro produce 2.2 key passes per game (compared to Velasco’s 1.8).
Nicolas Castro tends to play far more penetrating passes, as he makes 3.9 long balls per game, whilst the number of successful through balls is in fact similar (0.2). The result is 4 major chances created.
Nicolás Castro is a player perfect for the attacking Mezzala role. Positioned in the half-spaces, it gives perfect angles to make diagonal through balls that split between the opposition’s defensive block. His passing range can turn defense into attack immediately after receiving the ball.
A player who likes to drop deep to collect the ball has also great off the ball movement and dribbling to enter the final third at the correct moment. His 2.8 successful dribbles take him to a shared 5th place in Liga Profesional’s statistics – a ranking lead by Alan Velasco with 4.8 successful dribbles per game.
Time will tell if Nicolás Castro can continue his amazing form throughout the season, but so far, it won’t take long before European clubs sets sights on this creative playmaker.
Potential Improved Attributes for FM22: Dribbling, Passing, Anticipation, First touch, Technique, Off the ball, Teamwork
New traits: Dictates Tempo, Tries Killer ball often
Potential FM22 Value: €1Mill
Current Transfermarkt value: €150K
Other potential FM22 Bargains According to Stats
/ 21 / Genoa
Key Passes: 0.7
Guus Til / 23 / Feyenoord
Shots per game: 3.3
- on loan from Spartak Moscow
Alejandro Catena / 26/ Rayo Vallecano
Tackles per game: 1.7
Veljko Birmancevic / 23 / Malmö FF
Position: AMLR (AMC)
Nico Schlotterbeck / 21 / Freiburg
Aerials won: 2.8
Tackles per game: 2.2
Yuri Alberto / 20 / Internacional
shots per game: 2.9