Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain, Sergio Aguero and Angel Di Maria will travel to Russia for the World Cup this summer, and they are just the latest in a long line of talented Argentinean footballers. Diego Maradona, Gabriel Batistuta, Alfredo Di Stefano, Javier Zanetti and Hernan Crespo came before them, but who is part of the next generation to continue the Argentine legacy?
What is a wonderkid?
We look at the best youngsters aged 23 and under on FM 18, who have a potential ability (PA) rating of at least 150.
For a full list of our Argentinean wonderkids, visit the table towards the end of this page.
Paulo Dybala (CA 174 – PA 185)
Positions: ST, AM (C)
Best attributes: 19 technique, 18 dribbling, 18 free kick taking
Value: £48 million
Wage: £222,000 a week
The heir to Lionel Messi’s throne, if Paulo Dybala can just add that little bit of consistency to his game he could match the feats of the Argentine number 10. The similarities between the two are clear, both small, left footed but the 23-year-old Dybala may hold extra dynamite in his left boot.
The striker or attacking midfielder has a CA rating of 174 on FM, which can rise to a potential of 185. His best stats include 19 technique, 18 dribbling and 18 free kick taking, which will cost a whopping £200 million with wages of £222,000 a week.
Giovani Lo Celso (CA 131 – PA 150-180)
Positions: AM (C), M (LC)
Club: Paris SG
Best attributes: 16 first touch, 15 passing, 15 flair
Value: £6 million
Wage: £30,000 a week
With Paris Saint-Germain splashing the cash in recent seasons, the move of Giovani Lo Celso has gone unnoticed. The 21-year-old attacking midfielder has emerged as a useful player for PSG this season, making 32 appearances in a highly competitive squad. Lo Celso earned his full call up to the Argentine national side in 2017 and could have an outside chance of making it to the World Cup in Russia this summer.
Lo Celso will set you back over £100 million with wages of £30,000 a week. That will get you his 16 first touch, 15 passing and 15 flair, which add to his 131 current ability rating. A potential between 150 and 180 make Lo Celso a player to keep an eye on over the next few seasons.
Angel Correa (CA 150 – PA 164)
Positions: AM (CL), ST
Club: Atletico Madrid
Best attributes: 17 off the ball, 16 agility, 16 natural fitness
Value: £16 million
Wage: £32,000 a week
A promising talent at Atletico Madrid, but at 22 it’s make or break time for Angel Correa. The forward is enjoying his best season so far for Atletico, scoring six league goals to go with two assists, but he needs to make that step up and fight for a starting place.
Correa offers attributes of 17 off the ball, 16 agility and 16 natural fitness which give him a 150 current ability rating. His potential of 164 will cost you around £30 million, but Atletico’s transfer embargo means you have to wait until January to sign him, with his weekly wages at £32,000.
Sebastian Driussi (CA 139 – PA 164)
Positions: ST, AM (LC)
Best attributes: 15 ambition, 15 finishing, 15 first touch
Value: £7 million
Wage: £28,000 a week
Out at Russian club Zenit St Petersburg, we find Sebastian Driussi. The striker or winger made the switch from Argentine giants River Plate in the summer, after smashing in 20 goals in 36 games last season. He has struggled to adapt to life in Russia, scoring just three in 26 games so far.
The 21-year-old has a current ability rating of 139 which can improve to a 164 potential. His best attributes include 15 ambition, 15 finishing and 15 first touch will set you back a hefty £70 million along with wages of £28,000 a week.
Emanuel Mammana (CA 130 – PA 164)
Positions: D (C)
Best attributes: 16 determination, 15 temperament, 15 anticipation
Value: £4 million
Wage: £23,000 a week
If you’re looking for a young centre back, Emanuel Mammana could be your man. The 21-year-old is also at Zenit, having joined from Lyon at the end of last season. 21 appearances so far in the campaign show he can be relied upon, so expect him to head to one of Europe’s bigger clubs in a few seasons after some development in Russia.
Mammana is priced at close to £70 million on the game, with wages of £23,000 a week. That will get you his 130 CA, which consist of 16 determination, 15 temperament and 15 anticipation, and can rise to a 164 potential.
Luciano Vietto (CA 144 – PA 162)
Club: Atletico Madrid
Best attributes: 18 agility, 17 off the ball, 16 first touch
Value: £12 million
Wage: £55,000 a week
In a similar boat to Atletico teammate Angel Correa, the 23-year-old Luciano Vietto needs to prove he is good enough to play for a top club. The striker has just been sent out on loan to Valencia in real life, and four goals in eight games for Los Che suggest he has what it takes.
18 agility, 17 off the ball and 16 first touch give Vietto a 144 current ability rating. This can rise to a 162 potential, which can be yours by matching his £60 million release clause and wages of £55,000 a week.
Cristian Pavon (CA 137 – PA 160)
Positions: AM (RL)
Best attributes: 18 acceleration, 16 crossing, 16 dribbling
Value: £2 million
Wage: £4,000 a week
A player still plying his trade in his native Argentina, Cristian Pavon is one of the top performers in the domestic league. The 21-year-old winger has four goals and six assists in just 14 games this season, with his recent form leading to a first Argentina cap back in November.
Pavon will cost just £10 million on the game, with his wages of £4,000 needing to be increased. Stats of 18 acceleration, 16 crossing and 16 dribbling give him a current ability rating of 137, which can improve to a 160 potential.
Giovanni Simeone (CA 136 – PA 158)
Best attributes: 17 professionalism, 15 finishing, 15 anticipation
Value: £9 million
Wage: £10,000 a week
Son of 104-time capped Argentina international and now Atletico Madrid manager Diego, Giovanni Simeone has some career to live up to. The striker joined Fiorentina at the start of the season after hitting 12 Serie A goals for Genoa last term, and his seven strikes and four assists for The Viola this year illustrate his talent.
17 professionalism, 15 finishing and 15 anticipation help make up Simeone’s 136 current ability score, which can grow to a 158 potential. Those ratings will cost around £45 million so sign but expect his £10,000 a week wages to increase.
Leandro Paredes (CA 143 – PA 157)
Positions: DM, M (C)
Best attributes: 17 first touch, 16 free kick taking, 16 composure
Value: £13 million
Wage: £22,000 a week
Back at Zenit, Leandro Paredes has a bit more experience than the other young stars. The 23-year-old defensive or central midfielder has already enjoyed successful spells at Boca Juniors, Empoli and Roma before heading to Russia, and his five goals and six assists so far this season make it the most productive of his career so far.
Paredes has a 143 CA which can improve to a 157 potential, costing around £60 million and £22,000 a week wages. 17 first touch, 16 free kick taking and 16 composure are his best attributes.
Joaquin Correa (CA 138 – PA 157)
Positions: AM (CL), M (L)
Best attributes: 17 flair, 16 dribbling, 15 creativity
Value: £7 million
Wage: £31,000 a week
A rotation player at Sevilla, but the 22-year-old Joaquin Correa has a bright future ahead of him. The attacking or left midfielder has picked up 5 goals in just seven Copa Del Rey games this season, which has aided him to compete for a place in the Sevilla first choice lineup.
Correa’s 138 CA is helped by stats of 17 flair, 16 dribbling and 15 creativity, and can improve to a 157 potential. He will cost you £20 million with wages of £31,000 a week.
More Argentine wonderkids
Atletico Madrid B
Rodrigo De Paul
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