Football Manager 2018: Sevilla Guide, Player Ratings & Tactics

Looking for more of a challenge on Football Manager 2018? A cash-strapped but talented Sevilla side could be the club for you.

Alastair Pusinelli by Alastair Pusinelli

Sevilla have closed the gap on the La Liga top three in recent seasons, and they could soon emulate Atletico Madrid and usurp Barcelona and Real Madrid for the title in the years to come. The changing moment for Sevilla came in 2014, winning the Europa League to end a spell of four years without a trophy. Los Rojiblancos then defended their trophy two years running and vastly closed the gap on Europe’s elite.

Now regulars in the Champions League, Sevilla have the capability to attract big names, and now hope they can lose their ‘selling club’ identity with the likes of Dani Alves and Sergio Ramos previously plying their trade at La Bombonera. If you are looking for a slight challenge on Football Manager 2018 with still a high-pedigree club, Sevilla make a great choice. 

Philosophies

It may seem strange, but Sevilla have no philosophies, so you have free reign to do what you like in terms of ideology with the club.

Expectations

Sevilla President Jose Castro will welcome you to the club and present the expectations for the season. You can change these for extra cash, but the default is to qualify for the EURO Cup (Europa League) and reach the first knockout round of the Champions Cup (Champions League). The Spanish Cup is marked as not important.

If you aim for a Champions Cup spot in the league, you will have an extra £900,000 to play with in your transfer market, and if you go target the Champions Cup quarter-finals the board will allow you an extra £16,000.

Budget

Transfer: £3.56m

Wage: £1.39m per week (Current spend £1.35m)

Formation

New Sevilla head coach Eduardo Berizzo likes to use a 4-3-3 formation, but we have customised this slightly to get the best of your players on FM 18. It’s unconventional, but we have gone for a ‘4-2-3-1 DM wide asymmetric’ system, which gives you a defensive, central and attacking midfielder.

Sergio Rico takes the number one spot, with a back four of Gabriel Mercado, Nicolas Pareja, Simon Kjaer and Sergio Escudero.

Guido Pizarro is in the defensive midfield position, with ex Blackburn and Stoke man Steven N’Zonzi slightly further forward. 

Former Manchester City pairing Jesus Navas and Nolito provide the width, and Ever Banega is the number 10 role. Luis Muriel leads the line, fighting off competition from Wissam Ben Yedder.

On the bench you should opt for David Soria, Daniel Carrico, Sebastien Corchia, Ganso, Pablo Sarabia, Wissam Ben Yedder and Franco Vazquez.

Key Players

Sevilla have had some top players in the past, and they will be determined to not let their current key men from leaving the club. 

Steven N’Zonzi – CA 4 star (153), PA 4 star (155)

Recently linked with a move back to the Premier League, it is vital that Sevilla keep hold of midfield powerhouse Steven N’Zonzi. The Frenchman’s form in recent seasons saw him called up into the national team squad in 2017, and looking at Les Bleus’ midfield options at the minute, you could see the 29-year-old travel to the World Cup in Russia next summer.

N’Zonzi’s 153 current ability score can rise slightly to a 155 potential, meaning he will hit his peak this season. 18 natural fitness, 17 composure and 17 consistency give the big Frenchman a value of just over £15 million, with wages of £58,000 a week.

Nicolas Pareja – CA 3.5 star (153), PA 3.5 star (155)

Nicolas Pareja is the rock at the back. The 33-year-old has lifted two Europa League trophies with Sevilla since joining the club in 2013. With his rise to the top coming quite late in his career, the centre back has largely been overlooked by national side Argentina, winning just one cap, but did claim Olympic gold with the U23 in 2008 in Beijing. 

The defender is also just two off his potential, with his current ability score 153. 18 leadership, 18 determination and 17 anticipation help Pareja to a value of £4.4 million with his wages currently £44,000 a week.

Sergio Rico – CA 3.5 star (152), PA 4 star (157)

At the age of 24, Sergio Rico is one of many promising Spanish goalkeepers looking to chase down David De Gea. Rico is a product of the Sevilla academy, and you can expect the local lad to be with the club for the foreseeable future. He earned his first and only Spain cap in 2016, but there should be more to come after the World Cup. 

Rico has attributes of 18 tendency to punch, 18 reflexes and 16 agility, giving him a CA rating of 152. His potential of 157 gives the keeper a value of £17 million and £52,000 a week wages.

Young talent

There have been shining lights come through the Sevilla academy, most notably Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos, and Premier League winners Jose Antonio Reyes & Jesus Navas. With recent success at the club who can be the next to spur Los Rojiblancos onto greatness?

Alejandro Pozo – CA 2 star (115), PA 3.5-4.5 star (140-170)

Sevilla Atletico man Alejandro Pozo is yet to make his debut for the first team, but you will probably have to call on the youngsters services this season. The right winger has a season and a half under his belt in the Segunda Division and is a regular for Spain U19s.

The 18-year-old has a decent 115 CA rating, which can rise to a potential between 140 and 170. With skills of 16 acceleration, 15 pace and 14 flair he can already start to hurt opponents.

David Carmona – CA 2 star (115), PA 4-5 star (140-170)

With right back one of the weaker spots in the squad, David Carmona could prove to be the long-term solution. The 20-year-old has made two appearances for the first team in his career so far and expect him to get given more opportunities as the season wears on.

The Spanish U21 international also has a 115 current ability score, rising to a potential between 140 and 170. His best attributes are 14 crossing, 14 movement and 14 acceleration. 

Jose Maria Amo – CA 1 star (77), PA 3-4 star (140-170)

Looking further into the future, we have centre back Jose Maria Amo. The 19-year-old has an impressive three goals in just seven appearances in the UEFA Youth League, and he is beginning to pick up more game time for Sevilla Atletico in the Segunda Division

Amo, a Spain U19 international, has a 77 CA score which is comprised of 14 strength, 13 jumping reach and 13 concentration. He also has the potential to get between 140 and 170. 

Team Report


Strengths Weaknesses
Attacking Midfield Depth Defence Depth
Youth Prospects Overall Depth
Right Wing Depth Strength
Scouting Staff Jumping Reach
Star Goalkeeper (Sergio Rico)
Star Centre Back (Nicolas Pareja)
Star Left Back (Sergio Escudero)
Defence Depth
Leadership
Passing
First Touch
Strength
Decisions

Dynamics

Team Leaders – Nicolas Pareja (captain), Ever Banega, Daniel Carrico (vice-captain)

Highly influential – Jesus Navas, Sergio Rico

Dynamics is the most prominent new feature for Football Manager 2018. Dynamics depicts the dressing room atmosphere, which can affect your playing performances. Make sure that all your players are happy and be aware that saying the wrong thing to a more influential player can have catastrophic effects on your squad. 

Transfer Targets

With a transfer budget of just £3.56m, unless you sell a whole host of players, you can’t bring in any first team regulars. Therefore, you will need to look at free agents and loan signings to fill out your squad. 

Centre Back on loan – Axel Tuanzebe (CA 123, PA 140-170)

With just thee centre halves at your disposal, having one more option wouldn’t go amiss. Manchester United youngster Axel Tuanzebe is nowhere near the first team picture at Old Trafford, and with his versatility of being able to fill in at right back and defensive midfield.

You should be able to get the 19-year-old for wages of just £5,000, and you will only need to be pay 50% of that when he is in the side. That will get you his 123 CA score, and with his potential between 140 and 170 you may wish to consider to a two-year loan for the player.

Alternative options:

  • Doria – Age 22, Marseille, Brazil, CA 125, PA 145, Value: £2.9m, Wage: £31k
  • Kevin Danso – Age 18, Augsburg, Austria, CA 119, PA 136, Value: £1.8m, Wage: £4k
  • Marvin Friedrich – Age 21, Augsburg, Germany, CA 115, PA 131, Value: £400k, Wage: £7.5k
  • Unai Bilbao – Age 23, Athletic Bilbao, Spain, CA 115, PA 133, Value: £725k, Wage: £3.1k

Players to sell

You want to free up as much of your transfer and wage budget as possible for future transfer signings. Every transfer window you must identify which players have little or no role to play at the club. 

Michael Krohn-Dehli

At the age of 34, central midfielder Michael Krohn-Dehli is coming towards the end of his career. You should look to sell the Danish international to get as much cash as possible for him, and with a CA rating of 139, he can still do a job for some teams. Look to sell him for just under £1 million, and make a saving of £39,000 a week in wages. 

Finances

With Sevilla not having the financial backing or following of the bigger clubs in Europe, their financial position makes interesting reading. The overall balance of the club is on the decline, and you are set to go into debt at the end of the season.

After an initial rise, turnover will come down, but so will expenditure. The club’s profit will take a lull but almost immediately improve, so it is not all doom and gloom. However, your already low transfer budget shows no sign of improvement, and you look to have funds of just £2.5 million at the start of next season.

End the 70 year wait

It is a mammoth task at Sevilla given their financial predicament, but they have the capability to upset the apple-cart in La Liga. It will not be easy on Football Manager 2018, but look to close the gap step by step. If in your first season you can qualify for the Champions League, that will bring more finances. Then target a cup success, and perhaps then can you begin to think about going for the league title. You will need to be shrewd in the transfer market, so managing Sevilla is one for the FM veterans this year. 

Sevilla first team squad, player roles and ratings

Player
Age
Pos
Role
Duty
Role Ability
CA/
PA
Starting Lineup
Sergio Rico 23 GK Goalkeeper Defend 3.5 star 152/
157
Gabriel Mercado 30 DR Wing-Back Defend 3.5 star 142/
144
Nicolas Pareja 33 DCR Ball Playing Defender Stopper 4 star 153/
155
Simon Kjaer 28 DCL Central Defender Stopper 3.5 star 150/
155
Sergio Escudero 27 DL Full-Back Attack 3.5 star 149/
152
Guido Pizarro 27 DMCL Deep Lying Playmaker Defend 3.5 star 150/
155
Steven N’Zonzi 28 MCR Deep Lying/
Advanced Playmaker
Defend 3.5 star 153/
155
Jesus Navas 31 AMR Winger Support 3.5 star 149/
155
Ever Banega 29 AMC Advanced Playmaker Support 4 star 152/
161
Nolito 30 AML Inside Forward Support 3.5 star 143/
164
Luis Muriel 26 STC Complete Forward Attack 3.5 star 148/
155
Substitutes
David Soria 24 GK Goalkeeper Defend 2.5 star 135/
145
Daniel Carrico 29 D (C)
DM
Central Defender Stopper 3.5 star 147/
153
Sebastien Corchia 26 D (R)
WB (R)
M (R)
Wing-Back Defend 3 star 135/
139
Ganso 30 M (C)
AM (C)
Advanced Playmaker Support 3.5 star 142/
158
Pablo Sarabia 25 WB (L)
M (LC)
AM (RLC)
Inside Forward Support 3.5 star 146/
155
Franco Vazquez 28 AM (C)
ST (C)
Advanced Playmaker Support 3.5 star 149/
155
Wissam Ben Yedder 26 AM (C)
ST (C)
Poacher/
Trequartista
Attack 3 star 142/
150
Reserves
Clement Lenglet 22 D (LC) Full-Back Support 2.5 star 135/
<170
Lionel Carole 26 D (L)
WB (L)
Full-Back Attack 2.5 star 125/
130
Johannes Geis 23 DM
M (C)
Deep Lying/
Advanced Playmaker
Support 3 star 137/
147
Walter Montoya 24 M (R)
AM (R)
Winger Support 3 star 134/
144
Michael Krohn-Dehli 34 M (RLC)
AM (LC)
Advanced Playmaker Support 3 star 139/
146
Joaquin Correa 22 M (L)
AM (LC)
Inside Forward Support 3 star 138/
157
Jorge Carrascal 19 M (C)
AM (C)
Trequartista Attack 2 star 106/
<160
Juan Munoz 21 ST (C) Target Man Any 2 star 113/
134

Who are you managing on Football Manager? 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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