FIFA 18 Career Mode: Top Lower League Gems

You will be surprised how much talent is available outside the top flight. We bring you ALL the best players to sign from the lower leagues

Alastair Pusinelli by Alastair Pusinelli

Don’t know where to look for signings on FIFA 18’s Career Mode? Sometimes it can be incredibly tricky, with some clubs wanting you to keep a close eye on your finances. Don’t worry, there is always a player out there who fits the bill, and you’d be surprised how many talented gems there are in the lower leagues. We take a look at the cream of the crop on the game.

READ: FIFA 19 Career Mode: Top Lower League Gems

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Advantages of lower league gems

There is less money in the lower leagues, so this has a knock-on effect on transfers. Just think when was the last time a top-flight club was held to ransom by a minnow? In some cases, these players are just as talented as some Premier League or La Liga players, so if you look hard enough you can find a great deal. All of these players have potentials of at least 81, and they won’t cost more than £13 million. 

For a full list of our lower league gems, look at the table towards the end of this page.

Alena (OVR 73 – POT 89)

Age: 19

Positions: CM, RM, CAM

Club: Barcelona B (Spanish Segunda Division)

Country: Spain

Work rate: High/Medium

Best stats: 82 short passing, 80 dribbling, 79 acceleration

Cost: £16.3 million (release clause)

Wage: £4,000

Barcelona B features heavily in this top 10, with the club having such a prestigious academy. Pep Guardiola, Carles Puyol, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, Lionel Messi and Gerard Pique have all come through La Masia, with midfielder Alena the current top talent coming through the B side. 

The central, right or attacking midfielder is rated at 73 on the game, with an outstanding potential of 89. With 82 short passing, 80 dribbling and 79 acceleration you feel he can’t be far off a call-up to the senior team. £16.3 million is a pretty good price for a player who will go on to be one of the best in the world, with his current wages just £4,000 a week. 

Vitinho (OVR 71 – POT 86)

Age: 19

Positions: CAM, LW, RW, CM

Club: Barcelona B (Spanish Segunda Division)

Country: Brazil

Work rate: Medium/Low

Best stats: 74 ball control, 73 balance, 72 long shots

Cost: £9.6 million (release clause)

Wage: £3,000

There is competition for who is to be the premier architect at Barcelona B, with the 19-year-old Vitinho possessing plenty of talent. The attacking midfielder, winger or central midfielder is actually on loan at Barca from Brazilian club Palmeiras, but this deal has been made permanent on FIFA 18.

Vitinho’s 71 overall consists of 74 ball control, 73 balance and 72 long shots, making him very dangerous around the edge of the box. His 86 potential matches the current overall of James Rodriguez, and you can snap him up by matching his £9.6 million release clause. With weekly wages of just £3,000 you should move fast for the young Brazilian.

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Marc Cucurella (OVR 68 – POT 86)

Age: 18

Positions: LB

Club: Barcelona B (Spanish Segunda Division)

Country: Spain

Work rate: High/High

Best stats: 88 stamina, 87 acceleration, 86 sprint speed

Cost: £3.1 million (release clause)

Wage: £2,000

It’s a Barcelona B team hat-trick with Marc Cucurella completing the top three. The 18-year-old left back has been the club’s regular left back this season, and has chipped in with two assists from his eight games so far.

The Spain U19s international will set you back only £3.1 million and £2,000 a week wages, a great price for the 18-year-old. With his 68 overall made up by 88 stamina, 87 acceleration and 86 sprint speed, he’ll charge up and down the touchline for his side. His 86 potential allows him to become one of the best left backs in the world. 

Ryan Sessegnon (OVR 66 – POT 85)

Age: 17

Positions: LB, LW

Club: Fulham (English Championship)

Country: England

Work rate: High/Medium

Best stats: 84 sprint speed, 83 balance, 80 acceleration

Cost: £2.5 million (release clause)

Wage: £5,000

Linked with a move to Tottenham over the past year, Ryan Sessegnon is a regular Championship starter at the age of just 17. The left back or winger has already featured 15 times for Fulham this season, and it looks like it won’t be long before he makes that step up to the Premier League.

His 66 FIFA 18 overall is helped by 84 sprint speed, 83 balance and 80 acceleration. With a potential of 85, you should jump at the chance to snap up the teenager, especially with a release clause of just £2.5 million and £5,000 a week wages. 

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Ben Brereton (OVR 66 – POT 85)

Age: 18

Positions: ST, RM

Club: Nottingham Forest (English Championship)

Country: England

Work rate: High/High

Best stats: 88 acceleration, 85 sprint speed, 72 dribbling

Cost: £3 million (release clause)

Wage: £5,000

At the age of 18, Nottingham Forest’s Ben Brereton has bags of potential, but the striker needs to improve his output. In 29 appearances for the club, he has only scored three times, so manager Mark Warburton may soon lose patience with him. 

Brereton, who can also operate as a right midfielder, has 88 acceleration, 85 sprint speed and 72 dribbling on the game, contributing towards his 66 overall. His potential of 85 would make him one of the best strikers on the planet, so for £3 million and £5,000 a week wages you would be foolish not to move for him. 

Oriol Busquets (OVR 66 – POT 85)

Age: 18

Positions: CDM, CM

Club: Barcelona B (Spanish Segunda Division)

Country: Spain

Work rate: Medium/Medium

Best stats: 74 strength, 73 stamina, 70 standing tackle

Cost: £2.3 million (release clause)

Wage: £1,000

Back to Barcelona B, with Oriol Busquets providing the steel in midfield. No relation to Barca regular Sergio, Busquets has only just started to feature for Barca B this season. The 18-year-old has progressed up to the Spanish U19 side, so keep an eye on his development over the next few campaigns.

The defensive or central midfield has a 66 rating on the game, with a solid potential of 85. 74 strength, 73 stamina and 70 standing tackle are his best stats, and you are looking at just £2.3 million to sign him. His £1,000 a week wages make it a question of when, not if, you be moving for him? 

Adama Traore (OVR 73 – POT 85)

Age: 21

Positions: RM, RW

Club: Middlesbrough (English Championship)

Country: Spain

Work rate: High/Low

Best stats: 95 sprint speed, 92 acceleration, 85 dribbling

Cost: £12.9 million (release clause)

Wage: £13,000

Coveted by Chelsea in the summer, Middlesbrough’s flying Adama Traore is one of the most dangerous wide men in The Championship. With just one assist in the Premier League last season, Adama didn’t show a fair account of himself, but the Spaniard has already tripled that score this season.

The 21-year-old right midfielder or winger has electric 95 sprint speed, 92 acceleration and 85 dribbling in his game, explaining why he was once on Barcelona’s books. His 73 overall will cost you £12.9 million and £13,000 a week wages, certainly worth it for Adama’s 85 potential. 

David Carmona (OVR 70 – POT 84)

Age: 20

Positions: RB, RM, RWB

Club: Sevilla Atletico (Spanish Segunda Division)

Country: Spain

Work rate: Medium/Medium

Best stats: 89 stamina, 81 sprint speed, 75 acceleration

Cost: £6.7 million (release clause)

Wage: £3,000

David Carmona is a permanent fixture in defence for Sevilla Atletico in the Spanish Segunda Division. The right back, midfielder or wing-back featured 41 times in the league last season for Sevilla’s B side, and has two appearances so far for the senior team.

The talented 20-year-old will cost you £6.7 million to sign on Career Mode, with his wages only £3,000 a week. He possesses 89 stamina, 81 sprint speed, and 75 acceleration which make up his 70 overall rating. His 84 potential would take him to the same level as former Sevilla man Dani Alves. 

Andre Green (OVR 68 – POT 84)

Age: 18

Positions: LM, LW

Club: Aston Villa (English Championship)

Country: England

Work rate: High/Medium

Best stats: 83 sprint speed, 80 acceleration, 75 agility

Cost: £4.1 million (release clause)

Wage: £10,000

It’s been a difficult couple of years for Aston Villa after suffering relegation from the Premier League in 2016, but things may be starting to change at Villa Park. Under Steve Bruce they have a great blend of youth experience, with Andre Green playing alongside the calm heads of John Terry and Glenn Whelan. 

Left midfielder or winger Green has a 68 overall on FIFA 18, with his potential a highly impressive 84. The 18-year-old has 83 sprint speed, 80 acceleration and 75 agility, making him a nightmare for opposing right backs. For just £4.1 million it’s a move you must consider, but will you be willing to pay his £10,000 a week wages. 

Rico Henry (OVR 68 – POT 84)

Age: 19

Positions: LB, LWB, LM

Club: Brentford (English Championship)

Country: England

Work rate: High/Medium

Best stats: 93 acceleration, 91 agility, 90 sprint speed

Cost: £3.8 million (release clause)

Wage: £10,000

One of the Championship’s brightest talents, 19-year-old Rico Henry is progressing brilliantly, and looks set for the Premier League. The left back, wing-back or midfielder was a starter for League One side Walsall at the age of just 17, and you can’t help but compare the youngsters rise to England international Dele Alli, who came from League One. 

Henry has a 68 overall on this year’s FIFA, with his potential enabling him to reach 84. His 93 acceleration, 91 agility and 90 sprint speed make him a threat going forward, and those skills can be yours for only £3.8 million on Career Mode. His weekly wages of £10,000 are a bit steep, but you should pay up for the talented full back.

More lower league gems

Player Age Pos Club Country OVR/
 POT
C W
Ferdinando Del Sole 19 RW Pescara Italy 65/
84
£2.3m £968
Andre Dozzell 18 CM
CAM
Ipswich England 64/
84
£2.4m £3k
Ronaldo Vieira 19 CDM
CM
Leeds England 69/
83
£4.3m £9k
Dael Fry 19 CB Middlesbro’ England 68/
83
£3.9m £5k
Matty Cash 19 CM
RM
CAM
Nott’m Forest England 65/
83
£3m £4k
Abel Ruiz 17 ST
LW
RW
Barcelona B Spain 64/
83
£1.7m £1k
Emmanuel Latte Lath 18 RW Pescara Italy 63/
83
£1.7m £880
Jose Arnaiz 22 LM
ST
RM
Barcelona B Spain 62/
83
£8.5m £5k
Lucas Torro 22 CDM
CM
Osasuna Spain 71/
82
£5.7m £6k
Liam Kelly 21 CM
CAM
CDM
Reading Republic of Ireland 71/
82
£7.4m £17k
Giorgi Aburjania 22 CDM
CAM
CM
LM
Sevilla Atletico Georgia 71/
82
£5.5m £4k
Javi Jimenez 21 LB
LM
LWB
Nastic Spain 70/
82
£4.4m £5k
Joe Worrall 20 CB Nott’m Forest England 69/
82
£4m £10k
Aitor Bunuel 19 RWB
RB
Osasuna Spain 68/
82
£3.4m £3k
Sergi Palencia 21 RB
LB
Barcelona B Spain 68/
82
£3.4m £3k
Sofiane Alakouch 18 RB Nimes France 65/
82
£2.1m £880
Rodney Kongolo 18 CDM
CM
Doncaster Holland 62/
82
£1.5m £880
Sonny Laiton 17 GK Auxerre France 60/
82
£908k £880
Ollie Watkins 21 CAM
LW
ST
CM
Brentford England 68/
81
£3.8m £17k
Cedric Teuchert 20 ST
RM
Nurnberg Germany 67/
81
£3.3m £6k
Felix Platte 21 ST Darmstadt Germany 70/
71
£4.9m £13k
James Maddison 20 CAM Norwich England 71/
81
£7.1m £17k
Che Adams 20 ST
LM
CAM
Birmingham England 71/
81
£7.2m £16k
Curro Sanchez 21 RM
CAM
LM
CM
Sevilla Atletico Spain 69/
81
£2.9m £3k
Mathieu Cafaro 20 CM Stade Reims France 66/
81
£3m £2k
Giulio Maggiore 19 CM La Spezia Italy 65/
81
£2.2m £880
Santiago Bueno 18 CB
CDM
Barcelona B Uruguay 66/
81
£2.3m £1k
Ezri Konsa 19 CB
CDM
Charlton England 62/
81
£1.3m £1k
Javi Alonso 18 CM
CDM
Tenerife Spain 62/
81
£1.2m £968
Ryan Ledson 19 CM
CAM
CDM
Oxford United England 64/
81
£2m £2k
Leonardo Da Silva Lopes 19 RM
CM
Peterboro’ Portugal 67/
81
£3.3m £4k
George Hirst 18 ST Sheffield Wednesday England 62/
81
£1.4m £6k
Alexis Claude-Maurice 19 CAM
ST
Lorient France 63/
81
£1.7m £880
Moses Odjer 20 CM Salernitana Ghana 67/
81
£3.2m £3k
Jorge Cuenca 17 CB Barcelona B Spain 63/
81
£1.2m £880
Lukas Muhl 20 CB
CDM
Nurnberg Germany 68/
81
£3m £5k
Raphael Guzzo 22 CM
LM
CAM
RM
Reus Deportiu Portugal 70/
81
£4.6m £5k
Luca Plogmann 17 GK Werder Bremen II Germany 57/
81
£410k £880

C = Cost

W = Wage

Who have you snapped up from the lower leagues? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Alastair Pusinelli

First console: GameBoy Color / Favourite Game: Assassin's Creed 2 / Currently playing: Football Manager 2020

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