PES 2018 Wonderkids, even the title phrase gets the pulse racing. It is time for our annual piece on what young players to buy for the master league in PES 2018. Like Previous entries Pes 2016 and Pes 2017, The real fun in waiting for the game is looking at the real life players you will try to get in the Master League. After the season ends the papers are full of transfer speculation so it is always a bit of fun to line up your own targets in advance.
Firstly this applies best when playing the traditional PES Master League. This means default players and a brilliant option file. I always recommend pesworld.The attention to detail rivals FIFA and in many cases surpasses it. But now onto the wonderkids
In PES 2016 the star buy was Anthony Martial of Manchester United. He was still at Monaco when the game released so could be picked up relatively cheaply. Last year Another United star was the target Marcus Rashford. Unfortunately, Rashford didn’t work out for me. After a few seasons, he didn’t develop as quickly as others and never justified his £11 million price tag. In PES 2018 the young player to get will be Kylian Mbappé. The Monaco hitman has had an incredible season and the PES 2018 will no doubt launch with him still at Monaco, so like Martial in 2016 get him quickly before he becomes too expensive. In the Master League, an explosive striker with pace makes all the difference. The second target should be much more attainable. Depending on the PES licence agreement, Celtic may or may not be in the game officially. Their striker Moussa Dembélé is another that fits the necessary bill of young, fast and deadly in front of goal. No matter what way it works out he should be affordable. With the likes of AC Milan and others sniffing around the player in real life, hopefully, the game will be out before he becomes too expensive. Another young star is Torino’s, Andrea Belotti. He has had a great season in Serie A scoring 28 goals. Like Mbappe, any transfer for him in the first few seasons of your Master League will depend on a transfer before the roster is set. If he is still at Torino he may be worth a shot.
Midfield in PES is where the magic happens. You need your different types more so than any other football game. Usually, I have five types. Two goal scoring wingers, a creative, a destroyer and a defensive midfielder who can control the game. As you can imagine it takes a few seasons to get the balance right. The most important thing is to identify any default players who can fit the bill until you can get a few wonderkids. Everton’s Tom Davies burst into the first team halfway through last season and when playing Master League may be discarded by the strange computer controlled team. He is tenacious and has plenty of skill so should be on people’s radar. For more central positions I usually look to South America. They have the combination of toughness and technical ability that is hard to find in young European players. Here we find Thiago Maia of Santos, Brazil. At 19 he is the perfect destroyer for your team. Tailor the training to stamina and tackling and his natural ability will only continue to grow. He will be closing players down like a more skilled version of N’golo Kanté at a fraction of the price. Another Brazillian, Matheus Pereira can be found in Empoli’s youth ranks and depending on how you develop him, he should be able to play on either wing or as the creative player. Of course, a regenerated Totti, Deco or any favourite player from your youth will always end up taking precedence, but you need a youthful core that develops as your skills with the game do the same. For the ball playing defensive midfielder, last year I went for Reuben Loftus-Cheek on a free transfer and Jeff Reine- Adelaide from Arsenal. Adelaide especially turned into a £30 million player. He hasn’t progressed as quickly in real life so will definitely be another player I purchase this year.
Defenders in PES as in life usually come in two types, Italian or South American. This is also the natural home of the unknown player from your youth team or a lucky regenerated player. Other than that you are really looking for the next Maldini. Tottenham Hotspur has a massive squad of talented youngsters and with AI controlling them they may put some up for sale. One is Cameron Carter-Vickers. Pace and the possibility of developing on the wing are all good. Aston Villa’s fall from grace coincided with them buying Jordan Amavi. A broken leg in reality and a poor season has meant he remains at lower tier Villa despite being a definite wonderkid to the hipster European football crowd. Another young defender who will probably be available is West Ham’s Reece Oxford. My personal choice, however, would be Emmanuel Mammana of Argentina and Lyon. Get him and you are buying potential world-class ability at an early age. A player who could captain your Master League team from cradle to grave.
Of course, as in previous years, the target is Ac Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma. The best goalkeeper in the world at his age group and the natural successor to Buffon. Unfortunately, he is hard to get so shorter-term options like Sam Johnstone of Manchester United or Aston Villa or Jordan Pickford of newly relegated Sunderland would be a good option. Any goalkeeper in the Master League over and above the default keepers is an improvement. It is just a matter of getting a decent young one in with a starting level of 70 or above. After that, you can forget about the position and keep promoting youth team keepers as their understudy before selling them on. One day we will get Donnarumma.
That is the first part of our usual PES 2018 coverage. Join us around release date for review and the annual FIFA comparison.