8 Best CDM Wonderkids in FM24
By callum | November 24, 2023 | 256 Views
Best Defensive Midfielder Wonderkids in FM24
The defensive midfield position can be essential to some teams in Football Manager, especially if you use the popular 4-3-3 formation. I’ve simulated to 2033 so I can show you the best FM24 CDM wonderkids depending on who hit their potential.
I’ve chosen players that are brilliant are the fundamental attributes you need for a defensive midfielder. There are physically strong, good endurance, and able to win the ball back for your team.
We’ve also posted an article on the best centre midfielder wonderkids, if you’re looking for a player that’s better going forward too. Each DM is 20 years old or younger in season one of your FM24 save.
Note – there is not a guarantee these players will reach the same potential in your Football Manager save. They could be worse, they could be even better. This will give you an insight to how amazing they can become with the right amount of first team football, and quality training regimes.
8. Luca Lipani
Lipani might not look like anything special as a teenager, especially mentally. However, he has the potential to become one of the best CDM wonderkids in FM24. His physical attributes are well rounded, which is important for a defensive midfielder.
Where Luca Lipani stands out is in the air. He has 15 heading, 16 jumping reach, and stands at 6ft 2. He definitely needs to improve his mental attributes to make it to the top though.
Lipani has just joined Sassuolo, which means he can’t be signed in season one.
Luca Lipani in 2033
In my FM24 simulation Luca Lipani has developed his mental attributes really well, and his physical attributes are amazing!
The defensive midfielder has also developed a trait to try killer balls often, which benefits his 17 vision and 16 passing. Lipani will be able to play long passes to his teammates further up the pitch with plenty of accuracy.
After the first season, Liverpool were able to sign Luca Lipani for £11.5 million. This should give you a good indication of how much he could cost you in season two of your save.
7. Lucas Gourna-Douath
Lucas Gourna-Douath is a CDM that was also a wonderkid in FM23. I signed him during a Sunderland save and he was immense. He looks even better in FM24, and has higher potential too.
£16.5 million is how much he’ll cost you in the first transfer window, but he’s wanted by Wolfsburg and Ajax. You’ll need to give this wonderkid CDM a lucrative contract to persuade him to join your club.
Lucas Gourna-Douath in 2033
The FM24 CDM wonderkid stayed at RB Salzburg in season one, and then signed for Newcastle for £25.5 million. He’s got 48 caps for France which is amazing when you consider the high quality of French midfielders available for selection.
Mentally and physically Lucas Gourna-Douath is so good. Most of his attributes in these sections are rated either 14, 15, or 16. The media describe him as an elite midfielder, and we completely agree with this statement.
6. Marc Bernal
You’re probably not surprised to see a La Masia academy player is one of the best CDM wonderkids in FM24. Marc Bernal is just 16, but already passes the ball better than most professional players. He looks like he could potentially be Barcelona’s replacement to Sergio Busquets, who left to join Inter Miami in July 2023.
Marc Bernal won’t leave Barcelona in season one, so add him to your shortlist and track his development. Maybe at some point in your save you will get an opportunity to sign him.
Marc Bernal in 2033
Just like Lucas Gourna-Douath, Marc Bernal has no weaknesses when it comes to his physical and mental attributes. The CDM is strong in the air, and has amazing stamina to run for the full 90 minutes, but at his best when the ball is at his feet.
If you’re looking for a defensive midfielder that can break up the play, but is also a world class passer of the ball, look no further than this CDM wonderkid.
Ten seasons into your save he’s just 26 years old, so if you can sign him as early as possible, you’ll get so many years of quality out of him. 16 natural fitness means Marc Bernal will be able to play well into his 30s.
5. Andrey Santos
Andrey Santos is a very exciting defensive midfielder with potential to become amazing in real life.
However, this is currently being hindered by his lack of playing time while on loan at Nottingham Forest. If you’ve played FM before and not used a loan player as much as you should have, usually the manager of the players parent club gets really annoyed, and will refuse to loan you other players from their team in the future. This is why it’s important to use loans wisely in Football Manager!
Getting back to Andrey Santos, he’s more of a centre midfielder in the first season, but you can see he has the player trait to come deep to get the ball, and you’ll see in your simulation he developed into more of a CDM.
Andrey Santos in 2033
Santos struggled to get same time at Chelsea, so moved to London rivals Arsenal. You can see he develops into an excellent CDM, and has become a regular in the Brazil national team setup.
Because Santos is so well rounded, he can play almost any defensive midfield role you want him to do. His 12 tackling could be a little bit better, but apart from that, he doesn’t have many weaknesses.
4. Victor Eletu
Eletu is a young CDM from Nigeria that plays for AC Milan’s youth team. He might not look great at the moment, but he’s got some fundamental attributes to help him grow into a top CDM in FM24.
Victor Eletu has 15 determination, 16 natural fitness, and a resolute personality. He’s interested in joining other clubs too, especially if you’ve got a high reputation, and can offer him a quick pathway to first team football.
This wonderkid defensive midfielder will cost you £2.3 million in the first FM24 season, which is a wonderkid bargain when you see his potential.
Victor Eletu in 2033
Eletu is a rapid defensive midfielder in his prime. 16 Acceleration and pace allows him to cover the pitch really quickly, which means he has the ability to play as a lone DM. He’s also gone on to become captain of the Nigerian national team.
The wonderkid DMs passing shouldn’t go unnoticed either. He’s developed the trait to dictate the tempo, so he can be the base of your build up play.
Maybe pair him with a taller midfielder that’s better in the air, as this is not Victor Eletu’s strong point.
3. Warren Zaire-Emery
This is one of the best FM24 DM wonderkids. Warren Zaire-Emery had a breakthrough season last year for PSG at just 16 years old. Since then, he’s now played for the French first team, and scored on his debut.
This amazing form has seen Zaire-Emery get a huge upgrade in attributes compared to FM23. He’s definitely one of the best 17 year olds in Fooball Manager.
So from what I can see, Zaire-Emery is only willing to speak to Man City in season one. He won’t even consider joining Real Madrid, so the chances are you’ll need to wait to sign him in your save.
Warren Zaire-Emery in 2033
Surprisingly Warren Zaire-Emery got hardly any game time in the first few seasons for PSG, and ended up moving to Barcelona for just £27 million in 2025. This lack of game time has likely stunted his growth, so in your save he might have even better potential than what you can see in the image above.
He’s still world class. An immense passer of the ball, and got so many assists for Barcelona. He would be an excellent deep lying playmaker in the defensive midfielder position.
2. Romeo Lavia
Lavia moved to Southampton from Man City in the 2022/23 season and was outstanding for them. He was brilliant, even though his team finished bottom of the league.
Because he looked so promising, Chelsea and Liverpool were in the tug of war to sign him, and Lavia decided to join Chelsea. I probably sound like a broken record now, but this wonderkid CDM in FM24 has well rounded mental attributes. High determination, team work, and work rate, are stats that you need in your midfielders, and Romeo Lavia has these in abundance.
Romeo Lavia in 2033
In his prime, Romeo Lavia has 12 mental and physical attributes rated 16. He’s amassed 90 caps for Belgium, and moved to Bayern Munich from Chelsea for a huge £141 million fee.
The media describe him as a tenacious defensive midfielder, which is exactly what he is. Lavia can run all day, win the ball back, and pick the right pass to get you on the counter-attack. Definitely one of the best DM wonderkids in FM24.
However, there is one that stands out above the rest.
1. Eduardo Camavinga – Best FM24 DM Wonderkid
Camavinga is only 20 years old, so you can still consider him as a wonderkid. However, he’s been around for so long he doesn’t feel like one anymore.
He’s such an excellent CDM already. All of his attributes are a joke. 18 stamina and work rate makes him your midfield engine. 17 strength means it’s so hard for opposition players to get the ball off him. He can get even better too.
He will consider speaking to Manchester City in season one, but you’ll need to pay around £110 million, and give him huge wages. Good luck trying to sign this CDM wonderkid in the first season if you’re managing anyone else.
Eduardo Camavinga in 2033
Camavinga becomes a legendary midfielder, making over 100 appearances for France. Nobody could take him away from Real Madrid in our Football Manager 2024 simulation, which is probably how it will play out in real life too.
You’ll need to have a huge transfer budget to sign the best FM24 CDM wonderkid. He is almost the complete player in his prime. The lowest average rating he had across a season was 7.22.
The wonderkid CDM you sign in FM24 will depend on what you’re looking for in your defensive midfielder. For a physical beast whose main purpose is winning the ball back, you could sign Luca Lipani. If you need quick CDM that covers a lot of ground you could get Victor Eletu.
However, there’s only one person who is the best CDM in FM24, and that’s Eduardo Camavinga.