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Wonderkids – buying foreign wonderkids

Part 1 - Buy early, wait, save your money or loan out with a view to the future.
Started on 22 June 2020 by H e n d y
Latest Reply on 22 June 2020 by H e n d y
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  • VIEWS1639
As the Manager of Manchester United I am lucky to have some Wonderkids in my 1st team and youth teams. As the seasons developed, each year gave me new possibilities and I could afford to pay money for them as well.

The Wonderkids when FM20 starts are an interesting group of players. After 4-full-seasons this is what I experienced and I can try to answer the questions; Who are they, how much are they worth and most importantly are they worth it?

Let me tell you about the overseas players first.

Name: Lee Kang-In (nicknamed: fu king-gud)
Age when purchased: 20 years old
Season when purchased: 2021\22
Cost (and club): Valencia £36M

Success or failure: FAILURE and sold to Westham for £39.5M after 1.5 seasons.

At the time, I thought I was buying a real star and I even started to think that he could be as big as Hidetoshi Nakata. I made him the most expensive South Korean football player when I signed a cheque for £36M which activated his release-clause.

He started with a bang!...2 assists and a goal in his 1st game for United. It was an easy home game victory but still he was impressive and hence, his nickname was born… fu king-gud. The future did look good but then he never adapted to the physical-side of the Premiership which you have every game you play. In addition, his fitness never improved and that was a very very big problem. The smallest of injuries and he was unavailable for a longer than expected time.

Name: Eduardo Camavinga (nicknamed: BIG EDDIE)
Age when purchased: 19 years old
Season when purchased: 2022\23
Cost (and club): Rennes £52M

Success or failure: SUCCESS

He has only played with us at United for 1 season but wow this kid is a BEAST! Rennes did a great job of developing him and to be honest I think I bought him at the correct time from a football player perspective.
However, if we talk about the financial perspective, maybe I should have bought him 1 or 2 seasons earlier and then loaned him back to allow him to continuing playing and developing.

Due to language he has needed some time to adapt and Pogba, who speaks French, has really developed his game. They have an amazing partnership in the central midfield area. Did I pay too much?...maybe but Tottenham were trying to buy him and made a bidding war plus this kid is still only 20 years old and can definitely be the new Pogba.
I believe that the £52M was money correctly-invested for the long-term.

Name: Erling Haaland (nicknamed: BIG EASY)
Age when purchased: 18 years old
Season when purchased: 2019\20
Cost (and club): Salzburg £19.75M

Success or failure: SUCCESS

He was my number 1 target and I was very happy when I got him. From the moment I took over the Man United Manager position, he was going to be my striker.
At the young age of 22 years old, he has won everything; individual awards, team of the year awards, all possible club trophies and for 4 seasons he has always scored me 30 goals or more!! He makes everything look easy and the young man is a physical player, hence the nickname BIG EASY.

I acted quickly to sign him so I did not have a bidding war, got an amazing deal and slowly made him my number 1 striker.
At the same time, I also signed Mariano from Madrid for £20M who began by starting all games, that allowed Haaland to come on and get used to things. After the first 3 months of the season Haaland took over and really performed great, immediately becoming my number 1 striker and starting most games.

Name: Douglas Arezo Martinez (nicknamed: AREZO MESSI)
Age when purchased: 18 years old
Season when purchased: 2020\21
Cost (and club): River Plate de Montivideo £5M

Success or failure: FAILURE and sold to Huddersfield for £9.5M.

This was interesting, and I know what you are thinking. Due to Brexit and how it affected my save \ career, I know I paid way too much money for this kid.
The agreed sales price was something small like £230,000 but then to make it possible for the deal to go through, and for him to be able to play 1st team football, the price had to be a certain level which in this case was £5M. Cheers Brexit!

I really believed in the kid. His record in the U23 squad was amazing and very quickly he got the nickname which seemed to be his destiny. However, his transition to the 1st team would be painful. He would sometimes score but he was not reliable.
He was a Wonderkid who could not perform at the highest level. He would need 4 chances to score 1 goal and I could not trust him. He was being compared to Greenwood and Haaland who were proving themselves and that was his biggest problem. The young wonderkid had the same chances like the others but never took them.

Part 2 - coming soon.......Wonderkids – buying English wonderkids, wow they are expensive!

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