How to Unearth Wonderkids in Football Manager 24

Lynn Martelli
Lynn Martelli

Everyone who has played any of the games in the Football Manager series has spent countless hours searching for potential wonderkids.” These wonderkids, as their name suggests, are supremely talented youngsters who have the potential to become superstars in the game. Unearthing these prodigious talents is challenging but rewarding. They can transform your team or be sold for a massive profit later in their careers, giving you a hefty transfer budget. How do you find wonderkids and then nurture them so they reach their full potential? You start by reading this article.

The Incredible Football Manager Database

Each edition of the Football Manager series has increased the size and depth of its famous player database. Football Manager 24, the latest release, boasts a database of over 350,000 real players and over 60,000 clubs. Each player has 25 mental, physical, and technical attributes, with goalkeepers having an additional 13 based on their specialist position. Each attribute is rated from 1-20, with one being the worst and 20 the best. Players also have a potential rating of 1-200, and it is this potential rating that determines which players are wonderkids.

Players’ attribute scores are not plucked out of thin air; a 1,300-strong team of dedicated researchers follow real-life football and use their findings to create each Football Manager player profile. The Football Manager database is so accurate and vast that real-life football clubs and scouts have admitted to using it to scout potential signings. Some football fans simulate real-life games before taking advantage of the Mybookie welcome bonus promo code because the football simulation game is deadly accurate.

Over the years, Football Manager players clambered to sign wonderkids such as Youri Tielemens, Martin Odegaard, Ruben Neves, and Vinicius Junior, four players who have become elite-level players in the real world. However, not all Football Manager wonderkids have incredible playing careers. One only needs to look at Freddy Adu, Kerlon, and Cherno Samba to see players who flopped outside the digital realm.

So, how do you find the next Odegaard and avoid a potential Adu? Like in real life, finding potential wonderkids starts with building a robust scouting network.

Build Your Scouting Network

Having a top-tier scouting network is the cornerstone of uncovering hidden talents. Football Manager scouts, like the players, have attribute ratings in addition to areas of expertise. We cannot stress enough the importance of hiring the best scouts.

Choose scouts with a penchant for finding young players and expert knowledge of specific countries and leagues. Once you have those scouts, assign them tasks that they are suited for. For example, deploying a scout to search for players in South America if they have expert-level knowledge of African football is pointless.

Ensure you have scouts scouring leagues worldwide so you have all your bases covered. Remember that Football Manager uses real-life data when populating its database, so send scouts to countries and leagues renowned for producing excellent youngsters. South America and Africa are awash with up-and-coming youths who won’t cost the Earth to prise from their current clubs. The same can’t be said for youngsters in the top European leagues.

Utilize Player Search Filters

Use the comprehensive player search filters to narrow your search with laser-like accuracy. Age is the obvious first filter to select; look for players who are 15-18 years old. Refine your search by adding more filters based on the player’s position. You want strikers to have a high finishing and composure ability, possibly coupled with pace and acceleration.

Compare potential targets with real-life players who are considered elite-level. Take Mo Salah of Liverpool as an example. Salah is world-class both in real life and in Football Manager 24. He has 16 dribbling, 16 finishing, 17 first touch, 17 technique, 15 for decisions, 15 composure, 15 flair, and 17 vision, among others. You will find few youth players with such rounded attacking qualities, but you can use Salah as a guideline.

For example, if you discover a 17-year-old with the above stats in double digits, you could have unearthed a potential gem. Some wonderkids may have high scores for key attributes for their playing position but meager numbers elsewhere, such as high finishing but low composure, just as in real life. Don’t let this put you off signing them because you can train them to improve areas where they are not as polished.

Bringing the Best Out of Your Wonderkids

Many Football Manager players neglect training or leave it up to their coaching staff to create drills and routines for their squad. Don’t be one of those head coaches. Tailor individual training plans for wonderkids based on their positions and current attributes. Identify areas for improvement and focus on refining specific skills, but don’t forget to keep their good attributes topped up, too.

You shouldn’t devise a training schedule and then forget all about it. You must regularly reassess and adjust their training regimes because attributes can decrease and improve.

Consider using the mentoring system to pair wonderkids with experienced mentors. It is crucial to pair wonderkids with mentors who have positive personality traits to discourage detrimental behavior. The last thing you want is turning the next Lionel Messi into a moody, stroppy teenager who believes his hype, downs tools and refuses to train.

Sending wonderkids on loan to clubs in lower leagues is often a good idea. If a player is unlikely to feature in your first team for a few years, send them on loan, where they receive constant playing time in a competitive environment. Evaluate the quality of loan moves and recall your players if they are not getting enough playing time and experience.


Unearthing wonderkids is something every Football Manager player dream of doing; who wouldn’t want to be responsible for discovering the next Cristiano Ronaldo? However, not all youngsters rise to the top; there are more flops than the next generation of superstars.

Build a robust scouting network of top-tier talent scouts who travel the world watching leagues from all corners of the globe. Help those scouts to unearth gems by narrowing down their search through the player attribute searches.

Once you have a potential superstar in your squad, nurture them like you would an actual player. Improve them through personalized training, pair them with a mentor, and consider sending them on load to gain first-team experience. You never know; you may discover a player who gains legendary status or commands a £150 million transfer fee in the future.

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