Signing brilliant players is what Football Manager’s all about (well, that and not having a social life). So if you’re starting a new game following the recent release of the 17.3.0 winter update, then pay attention.
As you contemplate who to splash club owners' hard-earned dosh on, you’ll undoubtedly be looking to find some bargains. So we’re here to help: below is a list of the best players with juicy release clauses – and all have been checked against the latest iteration of the FM 2017 database.
1. Youri Tielemans
- Release clause: £17.3m
- Would suit: Any elite club
The Belgian wonderkid (see other must-buy youngsters in our round-up of the best wonderkids by budget to buy here) should top the list for any aspiring manager with a reasonable budget behind him/her. With the right nurturing, the midfielder is sure to develop into one of the world’s finest players.
2. Benedikt Howedes
- Release clause: £15.6m
- Would suit: Champions League chaser
The Germany international is at his peak aged 29 and, being the captain of Schalke, supplies valuable leadership abilities. A good bet to help shore up any top-half Premier League team, the versatile defender is also worth considering by Champions League clubs looking to add depth to their squads.
3. Ignachio Camacho
- Release clause: £15.6m
- Would suit: Mid-level Prem team
The former Spain U21 midfielder doesn’t come cheap, but he's certainly a more viable option than spending Galactico-like money on an equivalent. Best deployed in the centre of midfield, the former Atletico Madrid prospect is worth considering by those coaches looking for a defensive shield.
- Release clause: £5.25m
- Would suit: Lower to mid-Prem team
The talented teenage striker plies his trade at Malaga but can be acquired with a bid of £5.2m. He’ll need some first-team football and careful monitoring, but the young Spaniard could save you future millions if you're able to develop him into a top-class forward. See more here.
5. Timo Horn
- Release clause: £7.8m
- Would suit: Europa League entrants
Cologne's stopper is a reliable long-term signing for any side wanting to bolster their options between the sticks. Having been part of Germany’s silver medal-winning Olympics squad last summer, it looks a good bet that he'll become a full international at some point in the future.
6. Tomas Necid
- Release clause: £6.5m
- Would suit: Lower-mid-table, relegation contenders
The physically imposing Czech Republic international is available for just over £6m. With a decent goalscoring record at international level and a proven ability to cope with the physical rigours of Europe’s top leagues, he would represent a shrewd pick-up for promotion-chasing sides or those battling the drop.
7. Fran Villalba
- Release clause: £3.5m
- Would suit: Mid-table wannabes
The cheapest option on the list, Villalba has been a favourite of FM 2016 and 2017 managers due to his low cost and high potential. The attacking midfielder can be signed for a modest outlay and is destined for greatness – as long as you treat him right.
8. Carlos Kameni
- Release clause: £5.25m
- Would suit: Mid-to-upper-league dwellers
Most teams would love to have the reliable Cameroonian net-minder in their squad. Malaga’s experienced goalkeeper can be picked up for a cool £5.25m and, while not quite the right quality for title chasers, he’s a great back-up option from the bench, or a solid steal for teams wishing to push up the football pyramid.
9. Ricardo Rodriguez
- Release clause: £26m
- Would suit: Elite team in need of left-back
If cash is burning a hole in your pocket and you don’t want to pay an outrageous sum for a new left-sided defender, then Wolfsburg’s marauding wing-back could be your man: the Switzerland international is one of the best left-backs in the game – and he's only 24 too.
10. Theo Hernandez
- Release clause: £20.75m
- Would suit: Champions League winners
Only the biggest clubs need look here. The Atletico Madrid wonderkid can be grabbed early in the game for £20.75m. It’s a big splash to make early on, but in return you’ll grab possibly the best young left-back in the game and a sure star of the future. It’ll certainly be cheaper than trying to prise him away from the Vicente Calderon later in the game.
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