One of our most popular posts at FM Pundit was written at the beginning of the sites existence. 5 ways to develop a Football Manager youth side. But before you can put together a good youth team you first need to know how to spot the talent of tomorrow. As in the real world, much of spotting a wonderkid can be trial and error. Some will make it, some will become squad fodder or sold on. But here are some of the key attributes and information to look out for when picking up a player for the future.
It might pay to take attention to the articles from ‘One-FM’ who are putting together a series of experimental training articles. The first of the experiments looks at the effect of work rate.
Using their figures we can see the significant difference between two identical players, but for one with low work rate and one with a high work rate.
Although not a test with much scientific merit it gives us an insight to how the game behaves, other variables that we can’t control can also affect on the development, such as first team football, training facilities and injuries. But nevertheless the difference between the two players is significant and shows how work rate can affect your young players.
Work rate within games, given the player has the right physical strengths can be a fantastic attribute allowing a player to try their best throughout the game. But he will also have the same attitude in training putting 100% effort each time, to improve his own game. It is Debatable that Nani is the player Ronaldo could have been, but only for Ronaldo’s work rate he is now regarded one of the best players in the world, training hard in training to reach his potential.
An attribute that will determine how hard a player will commit themselves to the cause, but also to their own success. Tied to hidden attribute such as ambition. Determination will help professional players from being complacent and hopefully pull them through training to work harder and better in their careers.
This time using my own experiment and numbers we see the influence of determination. Both players starting the game off in exactly the same way apart from one with a determination of 20 and the other of 1.
Both started at Everton until our ‘Low Determination’ player went to Manchester United a season in and spent several seasons on loan before finding himself playing at Barcelona. But he broke into first team late and but even in the peak of his career struggled to get a game for Barcelona. Where as High Determination stayed at Everton for many years waiting patiently for his chance which he grasped with both hands, gaining many achievements before moving to Arsenal.
Although Low Determination was playing for the more reputable clubs, High Determination was truly the better player, with the greater achievements and as you can see from the graph determination does go along way for high and sustained ability.
Low Determination’s attributes were of one of a world class player, but High Determination was better in each attribute, picked for more games, played consistently better and had double the caps Low Determination had. Suggesting it is an important attribute for a successful professional.
In terms of player attributes we will assume that you already know which areas you will want to see a decent foundation in relation to a players position. For example a ball winning midfielder you will want to see good tackling. Good training and tutoring could help mould a players attributes to best suit his role.
Good scouts that can spot talent are vital if you are looking to spot the best young players. Scouts will be able to sift through the hidden attributes in order to give you the best scouting reports that give you enough information to keep you thinking, saving you the time of scouring through the database. Scouting will give you an impression how a players will fit into your side and if he will make it.
Personality similar to work rate and determination as many of these are interlinked and can be a key indicators of how your side is going to get on with each other, how or what they are motivated by. Many professional sides will want ambitious, professional players who aren’t going to cause too many problems in the dressing room or need little to keep them going in big games. The personality of your squad will be determined about how you wish to play the game.
Taken from the hidden attributes, the best scouts will be able to give you good comparisons between players you already have at the club and assess their potential ability and how they compare to your current crop. This is where the scout reports could be vital. But be careful, your scout isn’t always right and some of the most unlikely players can become incredibly useful in your team if played to their strengths and CA/PA figures aren’t always the be all and end all. But sometimes the players that promise the most may never make it.
This not only shows the value of good mental attributes for youngsters but for every player, determination and work rate are two attributes that can hold providence in the youngest of players and as you can see from the graphs, capturing a players with good mental attributes can help find the most able players. Don’t forget the power of player tutoring, put the right formula together and you can also develop these mental skills that will ensure a bright youth development.