“Dubbed the next…” – the FM Crystal Ball



🎵 Suggested tune: “Que Sera Sera (What will be will be)” – Doris Day 🎵


Football Manager has always been famous for predicting the footballing future, and for recognising a young player’s potential long before the real life football community catches on or makes a move – so much so that a number of well known clubs and managers have taken to actually playing/utilising the game in order to ensure they are up to date with the highest potential and most sought after wonderkids that SI continue to identify through their outstanding scouting network and wide range of researchers and contacts all over the globe.


One of my favourite features of Football Manager is to scout and find wonderkids / hidden gems who are “Dubbed“, “Touted” or “Labelled” as the next {Insert Football Legend name here}. While this doesn’t always mean that the player is guaranteed to rise to stardom and become an absolute superstar, I’ve always enjoyed unearthing a top youth prospect that has the potential to reach the ability of an already well known footballing icon – not only does it give an indication of the type of player they may aspire to be, it is also a great way of connecting the FM alternate universe to real life football which for me is the reason I have played the game relentlessly for over 20 years now since that fateful day when I swapped my copy of Sensible World of Soccer 95/96 for a copy of Championship Manager 2 with a mate at aged 10, and to this day have never returned it to him 😆.



The addition of FM19 to my Steam library not only means another 1000+ hours of trawling through random European and South American U-19 squads in the hope of finding a never-seen-before wonderkid – it also completes a 10 year collection of Football Manager games on Steam (the older ones are still piled up in boxes on my desk), and as such I think it is fitting to look at a selection of the best and most interesting Football Manager media comparisons between FM 2009 and FM 2019 and analyse where SI have either hit the nail on the head or had a swing and a miss when it comes to predicting the future and dubbing/touting a youth prospect as the next big thing.

A decade of FM on Steam

In this article we will look at 10 of the more memorable FM Media Comparisons over the past 10 years and analyse how accurate they were now that most of those players are either in their prime or have reached the pinnacle of their careers, comparing them to the legends whose footsteps they were touted to follow in and evaluating FM’s Media Prediction ability by rating each comparison on a 1-5 star scale. We will then compile a list of 10 of the hottest youth prospects in FM19 that have come out of the FM Crystal Ball who are already branded with a Media Comparison at the start of the game, and are dubbed/touted as a future footballing legend.


10 years of Media Comparisons


1. Chris Smalling – “Dubbed the new Rio Ferdinand” (FM2009)


Straight Swap?

In January 2010, Sir Alex Ferguson beat Arsenal to the signing of 20 year old highly rated England U21 defender Chris Smalling from Fulham for a fee reported to be in the region of £7 million – roughly 14 months after the release of Football Manager 2009 in which the game had an 18 year old Smalling “Dubbed as the new Rio Ferdinand” while he was still playing in the Fulham Reserve side, an interesting comparison considering the two ended up playing side-by-side in real life during United’s title winning campaign the following season. Rio on the other hand, has not once but twice broken the record as the most expensive defender in history after his £18 million and £30 million moves to Leeds and Man Utd respectively; needless to say Smalling would have big shoes to fill (no pun intended 😋).


Chris Smalling – FM 2009 Profile


Future Team Mates

How do they compare?

In order to compare the two we will look at each player in FM terms by comparing both players at their peak. Smalling, currently 29 years old is arguably in his prime now in FM19 and we will therefore measure him against a 29 year old Rio Ferdinand which requires us to go back to FM2009 to get a like-for-like comparison:

Ferdinand – FM09 Profile
Chris Smalling – FM19 Profile


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐★


Overall, FM didn’t do a bad job in predicting Chris Smalling’s inevitable rise to the pinnacle of English and International football – it’s fair to say he is not at the same level as Ferdinand in terms of football ability and defensive solidarity and overall Ferdinand is certainly the stronger of the two, however as FM predictions go this was definitely one of the more accurate and we will give it 4 stars on the MaddFM Media Comparison scale 😎.


2. Connor Wickham – “Dubbed the New Alan Shearer” (FM2010)



There are arguably not many boots that would be bigger to fill than those of Alan Shearer, particularly for a young English Striker that spent four seasons on the red side of the Tyne-Wear derby. Before that however, Football Manager 2010 predicted that it would be 16 year old Connor Wickham who would fill those boots and become the new Alan Shearer, and despite playing at Premiership level (on and off) for the past 8 or 9 seasons, it hasn’t quite happened for Wickham who currently plies his trade for Crystal Palace in the Premier League. Shearer on the other hand is one of the best Strikers to have graced the Premier league, and was prolific at both domestic and international level for close to 15 years scoring 379 career goals in 734 appearances.


Connor Wickham – FM10 Profile


It’s easy to forget that Wickham is still only 26 years of age, and certainly has a whole lot of football ahead of him. In FM terms he is not a bad target man based on his attributes, however unfortunately he does not come close to Shearer’s ability or achievements and this is one of FM’s more unsuccessful attempts to predict the footballing future in-game.

Wickham – FM19 Profile
Alan Shearer – CM9798


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐★


Even though he still has plenty of years of football ahead of him, Wickham is still a long way off reaching the ability and goal-scoring heights of Alan Shearer, therefore we are giving a two-star rating to this media prediction.


3. Marco Verratti – “Could be the next Andrea Pirlo” (FM2011)


Pirlo isn’t impressed 😛

Football Manager 2011 told us that a 17 year old youth prospect at Pescara had the potential to become one of the greatest Italian midfielders of all time by tipping Marco Verratti to become the next Andrea Pirlo – high praise indeed for a player who was only 2 years old when Pirlo made his Serie A debut for Brescia in 1995. Verratti showed signs of incredible talent from a very young age, and hasn’t failed to live up to his potential whereby at the age of 20 he was already playing Champions League and International football for PSG and Italy respectively. While Pirlo has almost enjoyed unparralleled success during his time at Milan and Italy, Verratti has also shone at the top level and as media predictions go this was one of FM’s finer attempts at looking in to the crystal ball and picking out a youth prospect destined for success on the big stage.


Marco Verratti – FM11 Profile


Pretty close! In terms of ability, there is not a lot between the two from an FM perspective, with Pirlo narrowly edging it and rightly so based on his overall contribution year on year for both Milan and Italy over the years. Verratti has a long way to go to replicate Pirlo’s achievements and honours gained however this is one prediction that FM can be proud of and hopefully Verratti can push on to emulate some of Pirlo’s achievements for both club and country.

Verratti – FM2019
Pirlo – FM2009


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


Five stars may sound generous, but if you think about it and look back at all of the occasions where we have seen the best FM youth prospects fail to live up to the hype surrounding them – SI were fairly on the ball when their researchers spotted 17 year old Verratti’s potential and dubbed him the next big thing in Italian football, therefore we will give them 5/5 for a top effort.


4. Sean McGinty – “Touted as the next Mick McCarthy” (FM2010)


Sean McGinty alongside Man Utd youth teammates Pogba and Lingard

Who?? My thoughts exactly…but when FM2010 came out, it seems that the SI researchers saw something special in 15 year old Irish teenager Sean McGinty, so much so that they labelled him as the next Mick McCarthy who was one of the best defenders of his generation during the 1980s.



How do they compare?


McGinty was part of United’s FA Youth Cup winning side in 2011 alongside the likes of Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Michael & Will Keane, Sam Johnstone and Ravel Morrison – however he never managed to make the grade at United and struggled to make the transition to professional football. Following multiple loan spells, he eventually ended up playing lower league football at Aldershot and Torquay before signing for Partick Thistle in 2018. McCarthy on the other hand, played at the highest level for both club and country and sadly McGinty never lived up to his potential as a teenager in FM2010.

Sean McGinty – FM19 Profile
Mick McCarthy – courtesy of @MadScientistFM‘s 85/86 Custom DB


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐★★★★


Unfortunately for McGinty this was a complete swing and a miss for FM Media Comparisons and he never managed to fulfil his potential as is so common in modern day football.


5. Jonjo Shelvey – “Dubbed the new Glenn Hoddle” (FM2012)



I had previously seen a 16 year old Jonjo Shelvey compared to Michael Carrick in FM2009, however it was in FM2012 that we began to see Jonjo Shelvey announce himself on both the FM stage and IRL also, so much so that he was touted by FM researchers as the “next Glenn Hoddle” within the game. Bearing in mind that I am a 32 year old Irishman, I never really had the opportunity or cause to see Glenn Hoddle play live during his prime and my main introduction to Hoddle was when he managed England in the 1998 World Cup finals (as well as all that Eileen Drewery nonsense :P). However I have since learned that not only was Hoddle a talented midfielder and fully-fledged England international, but that he was also one of the most technically and tactically astute players of his generation and an absolute powerhouse of a midfielder during the 70’s and 80’s. Were SI on to something here in comparing a young Shelvey to Hoddle?




Slightly biased being a Newcastle fan, but in terms of midfield style and looking at the attributes where both players are strongest – I reckon that it’s a fairly close comparison overall; Shelvey is of course nowhere near Hoddle in his prime however the two are very similar and I think that FM did a decent job in tipping Shelvey to emulate Hoddle’s creative and forceful playing style.


Shelvey FM19 Profile
Hoddle FM Profile courtesy of @MadScientistFM‘s 85/86 Custom DB


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐⭐ ★★


Perhaps Shelvey should give Eileen Drewery a call? 😋


6. Dani Pacheco – “Touted as the next David Villa” (FM2010)


Around the time that Rafa Benitez was building a Spanish revolution at Liverpool following their earlier Champions League successes, a young Spaniard was just signing professional terms at Anfield following successful youth spells at both Malaga and Barcelona. Such was his goalscoring prowess that Dani Pacheco was nicknamed “El Asesino” (The Assasin) by his team mates at Barcelona, which led to a high profile move to Liverpool and therefore a powerful media comparison by Football Manager comparing him to another Spanish goal machine – David Villa, who not only was prolific in La Liga during spells at Zaragoza, Valencia, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, but is also Spain’s all-time goalscorer with 63 goals in 98 appearances.


Dani Pacheco – FM2010 Profile


Alas for Dani Pacheco, his Liverpool career never really took off and he eventually returned to Spain following numerous loan spells away from Merseyside. Most recently I have crossed paths with him during my #RoyDeLosRovers save with CD Tenerife where he plays his football with Malaga in the second tier of Spanish football; definitely La Liga quality however he is quite far off the ability and goalscoring instinct that David Villa showed year after year in Spanish football.

David Villa – FM2010
Dani Pacheco – FM19


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐★★★


Safe to say that David Villa in his prime was a far superior striker to Pacheco who is also currently in his prime years in FM19, therefore we will give this comparison a 2 star rating on the MaddFM Media Comparison scale.


7. Raphael Varane – “Labelled the next Philippe Mexes” (FM2012)



This for me is another great FM Media Comparison in that it was one of the more rarer occasions where the youth prospect has actually exceeded their more senior counterpart. In FM2012, Real Madrid had just signed a 17 year old Raphael Varane from Lens and SI wasted no time in comparing him to another well known French Central Defender both in FM and IRL – Phillipe Mexes, who I remember signing all the way back in the CM4 days as a young CB at Auxerre before he went on to complete high profile moves to Roma and AC Milan.


18 year old Varane in FM12


Fast forward to 2019 and Raphael Varane is one of the best Centre Halves in the world having just recently won the World Cup with France at just 25 years of age. Few would argue that there are many better defenders better than Varane, and he has not only fulfilled his earlier FM potential but has exceeded all expectations to become one of the best world football.

Varane FM19 Profile
Mexes FM09


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


One has to go back to FM09 to find a snapshot of Mexes in his prime – I’d forgotten what an absolute beast he was in FM back in the day, so much so that his attributes are actually better than those of Raphael Varane in FM19!! Not sure if SI were a little too generous or not as I feel that present day Varane is far stronger in real life – either way, another successful media comparison for FM and we will give a 5 star rating to this one.


8. Jose Baxter – “Dubbed the next Jermaine Defoe” (FM2011)


I fondly remember taking over Everton in FM2011 and not only having an epic save where Marco Boriello was an absolute beast up front, but also coming across a youth prospect in our reserve squad by the name of Jose Baxter who was “Dubbed the new Jermaine Defoe” by the FM elders. At the time I wouldn’t have put as much thought into star potential ratings and attributes etc, and thought I had hit the jackpot with this sure-to-be-a-shithouse 18 year old striker. He showed glimpses of brilliance during the save however I never got the best of him and I believe I ended up selling him to one of the Bundesliga sides. By contrast – Jermaine Defoe needs no introduction, having entered the history books by becoming the 20th player ever to score 100 Premier League goals as well as being in the Top 10 all time highest goalscoring charts in PL history. Definitely not a bad comparison to have for a young 18 year old from Liverpool.



How do they compare?

I would imagine that the fact Baxter became Everton’s youngest ever goalscorer at the age of 16 years and 191 days had something to do with his initial evaluation as becoming the next big thing in terms of young English Strikers, as well as the fact that he became the youngest player ever to start for Everton the same year that FM09 was released. Unfortunately, his career almost peaked too early and he struggled to break in to the Everton first team, staying until 2012 before being released and signing for Oldham where he currently plays his football in League Two.

Jose Baxter – FM19 Profile
Defoe – FM10 Profile


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐★★★★


If we compare the current 26 year old Baxter to a 26 year old Defoe from Football Manager 2010 – well, there really is no comparison and Baxter was another unfortunate victim of the premature hype and over-zealous media comparison that we have seen quite frequently over the years. FM is a great but cruel game!


9. John Bostock AND Jack Wilshere – “Dubbed the new Paul Gascoigne” (FM2011)



I suppose it wouldn’t be Paul Gascoigne without having not one but two youth prospects needed to emulate his success as a footballer and an all round top bloke/lunatic. Football Manager 2011 stared in to the crystal ball for both John Bostock (Tottenham) and Jack Wilshere (Arsenal) and foresaw that they both had the potential to be the next Paul Gascoigne, which in footballing terms is praise indeed when we think of Gazza’s all round natural ability and football technique.

Bostock showed incredible talent at a young age, becoming Crystal Palace’s youngest ever player in 2007 aged 15 years and 297 days before later moving to Tottenham in 2008. Unfortunately his career never really got going at White Hart Lane and a series of loan moves ultimately ended up with him being released from the club in 2013; still only 27, he now plays his football in Ligue 1 with Toulouse.


John Bostock – FM2011


By contrast to Bostock, Jack Wilshere’s career flourished after he became Arsenal’s youngest ever player, and he went on to play close to 200 games for the Gunners while also being a regular in the England squad from 2011 onwards; he finally left Arsenal in 2018 after a loan spell at Bournemouth and signed permanently for West Ham just in time for FM2019.


Wilshere in FM2011

How do they compare?

Bostock – FM19 Profile
Wilshere – FM2019
Gazza – CM9798 Profile


FM Media Comparison Rating (Wilshere): ⭐⭐⭐⭐★

FM Media Comparison Rating (Bostock): ⭐⭐★★★


Bostock gets a 2 star rating mainly because the lad still plays at a relatively high level with Toulouse in France and also because he absolutely was that talented as a kid attracting interest from Barcelona and Man Utd when he was still in his teens; at 27 he still has plenty of football left in him. Wilshere on the other hand emerged as a far more successful player, and despite a career riddled with injury he has shone at the highest level, therefore is much closer to having become the next Gazza; probably not the only thing they have in common! 😄


Gazza (left) on the lash with Sheringham & McManaman; Wilshere (right) following suit


10. James-Ward Prowse – “Touted as the new Paul Scholes” (FM2012)



When asked about Paul Scholes, Pele once remarked “If he was playing with me, I would have scored so many more”; Zinedine Zidane called him his “toughest opponent”; Pep Guardiola was quoted as saying “he is the best midfielder of his generation”. It doesn’t take a genius to acknowledge that Paul Scholes was one of the greatest midfielders that the Premier League and even the world has ever seen, so much so that even Luis Figo once admitted being star-struck when coming up against Scholes and that’s coming from a guy that played alongside the likes of Ronaldo, Raul, Zidane to name a few. Imagine how a 16 year old James Ward-Prowse must have felt when he opened Football Manager 2012 to find that he was touted as the next Paul Scholes?! (assuming he bought and played the game – how could he not have? 😄



How do they compare?

At just 23 it’s hard to believe that Ward-Prowse is already in his 7th season in the Premier League as a first team squad regular at Southampton, and more recently earned his first competitive England cap in their Euro 2020 qualifier against Montenegro. His work rate, positioning, passing and creative ability make him one of the Saint’s most effective players and it’s interesting to compare him to Paul Scholes at that age who similarly had just kicked off his England career at Man Utd.


Ward-Prowse – FM19
Scholes in CM97/98


FM Media Comparison Rating: ⭐⭐⭐★★


Ward-Prowse has a long road ahead of him if he is to emulate Paul Scholes however at times he has demonstrated that he is a top class midfielder and if he continues his upward trajectory I would expect that he will not be a Southampton player for much longer (sorry Saints fans ✌️)


Honourable Mentions


Of course there are far more players that have been dubbed or touted as the next big thing within the FM universe, and please feel free to share your own thoughts or memories of great media comparisons over the FM years that have or haven’t exactly worked out as planned (check out my own Twitter page or the WeStreamFM page to jump in the conversation). We can also give honourable mentions to Jack Rodwell (dubbed as the new Frank Lampard in FM10), Ryan Bertrand (dubbed the new Ashley Cole in FM11), Dedrick Boyata (the new Philippe Albert in FM11), Adam Campbell (labelled the new Michael Owen in FM12), Nedum Onuoha (touted as the next Jamie Carragher in FM09), Alex Oxlade Chamberlain (the new Chris Waddle in FM12) – the list goes on! Now it’s time to stop looking at the past and take one last look in to the FM19 crystal ball to see who FM are now touting to be the next big names in world football in FM19.


Back to the Future 🕰️🏎️💨


1. Mickael Cuisance – “Could be the next michel platini)



At the start of FM19 Mickael Cuisance is an 18 year old French midfielder making his way at Borussia Monchengladbach, and usually ends up making a big money move to one of the top European sides after one or two seasons in the game. Preferring to play in an Advanced Playmaker role, the similarities with Michel Platini are evident when we look at his strengths in terms of passing, technique, vision and touch – Platini was widely regarded as one of the best players of all time and was famous for his creative ability and football intelligence which led to him winning three Ballon D’Or awards during his playing career. Praise indeed for Cuisance and it will be an interesting journey to see how he progresses in the game as well as in real life.


Will this ☝️ become this 👇 ??


2. Yann-Aurel Bisseck – “Touted as the next Jurgen Kohler”


Headed for greatness?

I came across Bisseck while scavenging among the Bundesliga U-19 leagues during my Tenerife save, and once the scouts did their business and his attributes & potential became evident, it was a done deal he has been immense during our first three seasons at the club. At the start of FM19 Bisseck is touted as the next Jurgen Kohler, whose name will be known by anyone who watched football during the 1990’s where he had spells at Bayern Munich, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund as well as earning over 100 international caps for Germany. Kohler is a living legend of German football – not only has he played in 3 Fifa World Cups and 3 European Championships (winning one of each in 1990 and 1996 respectively) – he also won two European club titles in very interesting fashion; winning the 1993 UEFA Cup final with Juventus against Borussia Dortmund, and then later winning the 1997 Champions League final with Borussia Dortmund against his old club Juventus in what was a reverse fixture of the 1992 clash. Bisseck certainly has a lot of potential in the game and in real life, and most recently he has become the youngest ever German player to have played in the Bundesliga – second only to another FM legend, Nuri Sahin.


10 years later? ⬆️⬇️


3. Arne Maier – “Touted as the next stefan effenberg”



Aside from frequently being confused with tennis player Stefan Edberg, Steffan Effenberg was a ferocious powerful midfielder who won 3 Bundesliga titles as well as lifting the 2001 Champions League trophy as Captain of Bayern Munich. Often a controversial character who at the time of retirement had amassed the most yellow cards in Bundesliga history (as well as tarnishing his own international career by giving the finger to Germany fans during the 1994 World Cup), Effenberg is widely regarded as one of the best German midfielders of all time and was voted as one of the greatest Bayern players of all time. Move forward to 2019 and it’s 19 year old Hertha BSC midfielder Arne Maier being touted as the next Effenberg and has bags of potential as well as already having really strong passing, technique, composure, first touch , teamwork, stamina and natural fitness. Maier is one of the hottest prospects in FM19 and I previously tipped him as one of the best defensive midfielders in my earlier “DMC or not DMC” article which I wrote for WeStreamFM.com and if you can afford the £40 odd million asking price, he is highly recommended.




4. Antonio Marin – “Dubbed the new Mario Stanic”


Present vs Past?

Most of the FM Community will know of Antonio Marin and he is not only one of the best prospects in the game, he is also extremely affordable and attainable even if you are not managing in the top tier of whatever country you are managing in. His speed, dribbling and flair make him an extremely effective Winger or Inside Forward and the kid usually turns out to be a star in the game (as he hopefully will in real life!). Interestingly, Marin has also been touted as the next Mario Stanic by the experts at Sports Interactive – Stanic was part of a golden generation that helped Croatia finish in 3rd place in their first ever World Cup in 1998, narrowly losing out 2-1 to eventual winners France who needed two goals from one Lillian Thuram to advance to the final. He scored one of his 7 international goals at the tournament in a group game against Jamaica, and was capped 49 times for his country during a career in which he played at the highest club level for Benfica, Club Brugge, Parma and Chelsea. Not a bad comparison for a 17 year old!


Flair, Flair and more Flair


5. Fabio Silva – “Could be the next Eusebio”


Pele & Eusebio – legends of their time

What better way to start your career than to be compared to one of the best players to have ever played the game? No pressure at all, however at just 16 years old Fabio Silva has already shown glimpses of absolute genius and outstanding ability while playing in the Porto Youth Team, and as a result is tipped for greatness at the start of FM19 where he is tipped to become the next Eusebio who as we all know was one of the greatest ever footballers. Between 1961 and 1975 Eusebio scored 317 goals in 301 games for Benfica picking up 11 league titles as well as scoring 41 goals in 64 appearances for Portugal – only one Portuguese player has ever reached this level since in the form of one Cristiano Ronaldo, however if this crystal ball prediction comes to fruition it will be interesting to see what a player Fabio Silva turns in to – snap him up quick!



The kid has potential


6. Jonathan burkardt – “Touted as the next Jurgen Klinsmann”



Not much is known about Jonathan Burkardt who is yet to score his first goal for Mainz 05 in the Bundesliga, however looking at his FM19 attributes he has all the potential to become a top Striker and possibly emulate Jurgen Klinsmann‘s successes as one of Germany’s greatest ever forwards playing and scoring in 6 consecutive International tournaments between Euro 88 and World Cup 98, as well as winning the World Cup with West Germany in 1990 and the European Championship in 1996 with unified Germany. Klinsmann’s playing career spanned almost 20 years with spells at Inter, Monaco, Tottenham and Bayern and at just 18 years old Burkardt could have a big future ahead of him.


Time find a goal celebration JB


7. Emile Smith Rowe – “could be the next John Barnes”


“You’ve got to hold and give but do it at the right time”


I have to say I originally didn’t know too much about Emile Smith Rowe, which I suppose makes sense considering he has yet to make his full Arsenal debut and is currently loan at 3rd placed Bundesliga side Red Bull Leipzig. However, after scouting and looking at him in more detail his attributes and PPM’s are quality and it’s not surprising he has been compared to what I suspect is a younger John Barnes when he was a beast on the left side of midfield for Watford and Liverpool alike. Not only is Barnes renowned for his rapping ability, he was also an outstanding footballer and won 79 caps for England as well as two league titles with Liverpool before the old First Division became the Premier League at the turn of the 1990s. Barnes was so good that Peter Beardsley once said of him “The best player I ever played with, bar none. For three or four years at the end of the ’80s, John was possibly the best player in the world.” Jamie Carragher, whose career was just kicking off before Barnes left Liverpool also commented that “Technically, he’s the best player I’ve ever trained or played with, he was great with both feet, they were both exactly the same. I’d say he’s the best finisher I’ve ever played with (including Torres, Fowler, Owen).” Eddie Smith Rowe if you are reading this – time to shine pal 🔥.


Barnes at 21


Barnes 10 years later


9. Felice D’Amico – “Dubbed the new Roberto Baggio



What to say about Roberto Baggio that already hasn’t been said? Aside from winning both the Ballon D’Or and FIFA World Player of the year in 1993, Il Divin Codino (The Divine Ponytail) was also the first Italian for over 50 years to score over 300 career goals and came fourth in the FIFA Player of the Century poll in 1999. Felice D’Amico on the other hand starts FM19 as a 17 year old Inside Forward on the books at Inter Milan, and if we are to compare the two then we can see some potential if we look at his Flair, Technique, First Touch and Off the Ball attributes- will he be as good as Baggio though? Only time will tell – Baggio was acclaimed for his creativity, technique and particularly his set piece ability which we don’t really see in D’Amico however at 17 he has a lot of time to prove us wrong.


Should he grow a ponytail?


10. Gavin Bazunu – “Touted as the next Shay Given”



An both an Irishman and a Newcastle fan, this is probably the youth prospect I am most excited about in FM19. Gavin Bazunu is a 17 year old Irish Goalkeeper in Man City’s U19 team at the start of the game, and his potential is immediately evident when looking at his attributes and scouting report. In real life, he is an Irish U17 international whose potential has been described as “scary” when he signed for Man City in 2018; in Football Manager he is touted as the next Shay Given which is certainly praise indeed considering Given spent over 20 years playing at the top level of English football and earned 134 caps for Ireland. What I always liked about Given was that he was as solid and consistent as goalkeepers come, and was a fantastic professional and role model for younger keepers at Newcastle such as Tim Krul and Fraser Forster while also playing over 450 games for the club; not bad for £1.5 million. If Bazunu even comes close to Given’s ability and mentality, he is a certainty to hold a Number 1 jersey for both club and country and for Irish fans it is a mouth watering thought to have such a prospect coming through the ranks after what has been a difficult number of years at Irish youth level.


Luck of the Irish ☘️☘️


That’s our Top 10 Media Comparisons for FM19 done – what do you think? Have you had crossed paths with any of the above already? Had any better ones? Please feel free to share your own thoughts and experiences below or alternatively via either my own Twitter page or on the WeStreamFM account; be sure to mention any other prospects or superstars that we have missed and share your own FM Media Comparison / Crystal Ball insights 🔮. Thanks for reading, feedback and retweets etc are always appreciated, you can also check out my own blog to read more of my FM content and be sure to also check out WeStreamFM.com and TeaandBusquets.com for more great content from other writers! Cheers and enjoy the second half of FM19 🤘, MaddFM (Paul).



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