Help with developing youth players

So far the guides on this blog have covered finding great youth talent. But what about developing these prospects into world-beating players? Well, this guide should help you along that process. I’ll start by laying out what sort of contract to offer your youth players and how to avoid some common glitches, before moving on to how to actually develop the players.


1. Contracts to offer
2. The contract glitch
3. Loaning youth players out
4. Getting them game time

*NOTE* I would recommend creating a backup save before you offer any contracts to youth players. If the contracts are declined quit, reload the backup save and try again with an improved contract offer. That way you avoid wasting what could be valuable time. Secondly, if you intend to send young players out on loan, create a backup save at the start of the transfer window. If you get no offers then reload and try again (although see point 3, especially the bit about a player’s age).

1. Contracts to offer

When you go into the Youth Squad screen you will see that the ages of all your youth players are listed. If a player is 16 or over they will have a green tick under the heading ‘eligible’. This means that the player is old enough to be offered a contract and join your first team.

If you press A (or X on the Playstation) you can go into the ‘offer contract’ screen. This is where you set out the terms of a contract with the player. Here you can set the weekly wage for the player, the length of the contract and the bonus per goal scored or clean sheet kept by the player. There is also a section where your Chief Executive suggests what you should offer the player. Interestingly, the weekly wage the Chief Executive suggests is often much lower than the default amount already entered into the ‘Salary (per week)’ area – for example, on my screen right now is a youth player whose suggested wage (by the Chief Exec) is £1,000 a week, but the default amount is £6,000 a week.

Here is my first piece of advice – totally ignore what the Chief Executive says. For a start, if you take the Chief Exec’s advice this can lead to the player rejecting the contract and saying the wages aren’t high enough. Secondly, if the player does accept the contract this can trigger the contract glitch (more on that later). So it is advisable to leave the wages amount more or less as it is.

Often youth players don’t even accept the default wages that you offer them. When this happened to me I went about increasing the wage offers by £1,000, £2,000, even £3,000, and all of them were rejected by the player. However, there is a very simple way around this. Trying something new, I kept the default wages the same but increased the length of the contract by 1 year. Hey presto – contract accepted!

2. The contract glitch

Many people seem to have found that after they offer certain contracts to youth players the player’s status is permanently stuck to ‘contract accepted’. This means that whenever the user clicks on this player in the contracts screen (in an attempt to renew the player’s contract, for example), they are told that the player has only just signed for the club and the user has to wait until next season to renegotiate their contract. For example, if you sign a youth player to your first team and offer them a 3 year contract, for every year of the contract their status will be ‘contract accepted’. Even in the 3rd year you will be told that the player has only just signed their contract, when this is clearly not true. The result is that at the end of the 3 years the player’s contract automatically expires and they join the free agents. When the new season starts the player will have disappeared, lost forever.

So what causes this glitch? Well, no one is quite sure yet. It seems that if you offer a youth player a weekly wage of anything less than around £1,050 then the glitch is triggered. However, this glitch happened for me when I offered a player a sizeable amount less than the default wage, yet still higher than around £1,000. I think their default weekly wage was £8,000 – I thought this was ridiculous for a youth player, and offered them £4,000. They accepted, but the glitch was triggered.

However, fear not! It appears there are 2 possible solutions (other than offering your youth players at least £1,100)

  • This seems to be the quickest and easiest way. Go to the ‘sell players’ screen and locate the glitched player. Change their status to put them up for sale or for loan (either loan option will do). Advance a few days, then go back to the ‘sell players’ screen and change the glitched player’s status back to normal (i.e. so they are not for sale or loan). Their status should now read ‘none’, rather than ‘contract accepted’. (Thanks to fianoname for the tip on the FIFA 12 forums).
  • The other method is to release the glitched player during a transfer window, then resign them to a new contract. It seems that the contract glitch does not affect free agents – if you offer them a contract with low wages they will simply reject it, rather than accept it and become glitched. However, you must not try this method after the January transfer window has passed. This is because youth players released after this point very often disappear from the free agents when the new season starts. You will therefore have lost them before you have the chance to resign them. Therefore you must be very careful with this method!

3. Loaning youth players out

Now onto the good stuff. Many people (including myself) have expressed frustration at not being able to loan out youth players. Most of the time during transfer windows it appears that there are just no offers forthcoming to take your players on loan. This is usually for one of 2 reasons:

  • The youth player in question is 16. For some reason, other clubs never take 16 year olds on loan. However, they will quite readily take 17 year olds on loan. So, to avoid this problem, either put off signing youth players to your first team until they are 17, or if you have already signed them aged 16 you will have to wait to put them out on loan when they are 17. If your player is indeed 17 and you still get no loan offers then you were probably just unlucky – reload your backup save (at the start of the transfer window) and try again.
  • The other possible reason is that the player’s wages are too high. If the default amount for weekly wages for a youth player seems unusually high when compared to other youth players, you may struggle to get them out on loan. However, this is not 100% certain. I had a youth player whose wages were £9,000 when all my other youth players’ wages were around the £4,000 or £5,000 mark, and he still got out on loan. This seems like less of a problem than the age problem – I was only able to loan out this £9,000 wage player when he was 17. However, just be aware of it when offering contracts to youth players. I would recommend that you don’t lower the player’s wages, but instead play him when you can to help him develop. This way you raise his OVR, making him seem more attractive to clubs looking to take players on loan. Sometimes you just have to be patient.

Loaning can be a great way to develop your newly-signed youth players. However, you have to make sure they go to the right club. Once a player is 17 (or over) and up for loan, if you get an offer don’t accept it immediately. Click ‘stall’, then go to transfers and look at that teams’ players. If you don’t think your loanee will get much game time (e.g. if you have a 60 OVR player and Manchester City offer to take him on loan), don’t accept it, because he’ll come back a season later without any growth. Try to send your players to teams where they’ll get game time, then they should come back a few points better.

4. Getting them game time

If you either don’t want to (or can’t) send a player out on loan then you should make sure they get plenty of game time. This may be difficult if you’re a very good team like Barcelona, seeing as even your rarest and very best youth players probably won’t be rated higher than around 72 OVR. If this is the case then first of all make sure you don’t sign too many youth players at once! If you do, try sending some out on loan or selling some (once you can; you can’t sell youth players until the next season).

The best way to get youth players game time is to play them in the least important games and in cup games. When you do this, give them as much game time as possible. Simply put, if a youth player’s energy bar is green before these games, play them. If it’s important you don’t lose these games (i.e. if the board wants you to win a cup) then make the squad a mix of youth players and top class players. However, it’s imperative to give your youth players as much game time as possible in order to fully develop their potential. Once they’ve started growing and have reached a decent OVR this will obviously become less of a worry – you may pick them anyway thanks to their strong OVR.

If, on the other hand, you are playing as a weaker team, youth players can provide a vital (not to mention cheap) boost to your team. You may find that youth players simply slot straight into your first team. If this is the case then you should not struggle to give them game time, and you’ll find that they grow very quickly, especially if they have high potential.

Well, I hope you find these tips useful. They should help you bring the most out of your scouted players and help you avoid the pitfalls associated with youth players.


151 thoughts on “Help with developing youth players

  1. I am suffering from the annoying problem of my youth players refusing to sign no matter how much i offer. i tried offering insane amounts like 50,000 but they still demanded more. Short of going back to an earlier save point (so far that i would have to play all the cup games again) what can i do? I tried to offer a longer contract but it won’t let me offer more than 3, which was the default option. help!

    • Hi Kenny.

      Unfortunately this is a common bug if you’ve downloaded the November patch. However, there is a solution. Have a look at this post on the EA forums:

      The gist of it is that you need to wait until either the end of the season or the start of a new season (try both) and then try offering a contract again. Often once a long period of time has passed after offering a player a contract he will accept a new offer.

      The alternative is to release the player during the transfer window and then re-sign him. However, you have to be very careful with this method because…

      1) If you don’t sign him quick enough from the free agents another team may get him
      2) If you release him and then end the season before re-signing him, he will most likely have disappeared from the game when the new season starts!

      Hope this helps!

      • Thanks so much! I’ll try this method out as soon as possible. Roll on transfer window! My little team needs some depth. Thanks again!

      • Success! I followed your advice, and when the new season started the cocky youth players forgot about their ridiculous demands and settled for the low default wages. huzzah!

        Many thanks,

    • Kenny, I have the same problem, I think it is because they want a 4 year contract and the option is only there for a 3 year contract, rubbish. This game is so full of bugs I think next time (and for the first time ever) I’m going to buy Pro Evo.

  2. I have a certain youth player, his generated name is Royston Clavlan, he is 16 and his potential outrageous like 83-89 or something and his starting overall is supposed to be around 70, i have been trying him to my senior squad but he wont take any offer, the wages are not high enough and my last offer was 200k just to see if he would take, what the hell is wrong with it?

  3. Thanks for the amazing blog. Quick question! I have a young player who has a potential between 85-91. I’m trying to sign him for a long time now. However although I have offered him upto $70,000 weekly, he still does not accept the offer. I cannot offer him more than 3 years. Do you have a solution for this glitch?

  4. Have you encountered the following glitch?

    I’m playing as Ipswich, I’ve signed Michael Owen on £18,000 per week. At the end of the season, he has one month left on his contract so I go to renew. I have £5000 spare wages and Michael wants an extra £2000 per week – £20,000.

    HOWEVER, his new wages will ONLY come from what I have spare, not his current wages PLUS what I have spare, so I can only offer him £5000 per week! For this reason, I lose all my good players at the end of the season! Aaaaaaaarrrgrrggggghhhhhhhh!!!

    My other save corrupted after 2 seasons so I started again, after another 2 seasons on World Class, getting promoted, this has really peed me off.

    I’ve tried renewing his contract earlier in the season but it doesn’t work, same problem.

    • You could try altering the budget on the ‘budget allocation’ screen and put more money in the wages pot and take some from the transfer pot. That way you should be able to afford his higher wage demands.

      If you don’t have any money to shift around, perhaps release him at the end of the season and then try re-signing him from the free agents at the beginning of the next season. Quite often when you do this a player’s wage demands will be lower than when they were on your squad (although sometimes they are also higher).

      As I said in the reply to Kenny’s question above, be very careful when doing this with scouted players, as they tend to disappear when transitioning from one season to the next if they’re in the free agents! This also occasionally happens with real life players, so make a backup save at the end of the season just in case.

    • just when offering the wages press X on the 360 or SQUARE on the ps3 to reset his wage it will put it back to 18 000 and you will still have your budget

  5. Pingback: Help for the November patch update | FIFA 12 Scouting Tips & Tricks

  6. thanks for the summary, i started reading that thread and got to page 37 before it got too much for me..

    i still have one question, though – when trying to develop youth players – is it just about them getting game time, or do they also need to get good ratings in the games? because i have some great young CBs, but i play with 3 at the back so even when i win games my defenders get mediocre ratings. i’ve really struggled to get my youngsters to improve significantly, because i can only afford to use them as subs every now and then. it’s a shame because i have about 10-15 youngsters in the reserves pretty much stagnating.

    • I tend to think the focus is on game time. I’ve found that players grow even if the team loses, and it’s probably the case that game time > match rating (as long as you’re not on a massive losing streak).

      Personally I almost always sim games, and I find that as long as you win your players get good ratings. If you play games you can win but your players can still get bad ratings – it’s just one of those annoying quirks in FIFA. So if you want your players to grow I’d go for a combination of giving them lots of game time and simming games.

      I know what you mean about players stagnating – I signed way too many youth players and now I’m basically having to do rotating loans every season to ensure they all get some game time!

  7. I am playing with a young player for 1.5 seasons, I almost played him in all games so far. The player has only grown +3 so far. He has a potential of 85-91 he is currently 66. I am only subbing him rarely. He is a LM however I’m playing him as a RM. do you think that could affect it? Any ideas why he is growing so slowly? Do you know any activities that will speed up the growth when playing the matches?

    • yo, burooo he would be 17 then and 66OVR. if he is a 68OVR by 18 and grows+2 OVR every year he is a 84 ( i think… im bad at math) by age 26 thats pretty dang on good, he is makin good progress!

      PS. i pass back and forth and boost match rating to speed up growth, it might not work too effective but he will grow definitintly like that

    • I have the same problem, i’ve been playing with an italian midfielder for 3 seasons now, and he hasn’t grow more than 2 points. I’m thinking on loaning him… If you find something of this out, please reply.


    • Joey is right. I think the problem is that before the patch update players grew ridiculously fast (I have a 83 rated 22 year old who started at something like 67 at age 18, for example). After the patch they slowed the growth down a little, but compared to before the patch it seems like players are taking forever to reach their potential. They aren’t, it’s just been made a little more realistic. Don’t worry, your player will definitely reach his potential, it might just take a little longer than before.

      As for how to speed up growth, Joey’s idea about passing lots is good because it means your players will have high pass-completion percentages, boosting their match ratings. However, it’s a very boring way to play and probably doesn’t make a huge amount of difference. Just play normally, if your players have high potential then they will grow regardless 🙂

      • Hi, I’m playing without the November patch installed and I think that young players growth is just unrealistic even in this version, where as I understand from what you wrote above, players should grow faster than with the patch installed. I guess that for average players growing like 2/3 points a year should work fine, in fact they should reach their maximum potential by age 25/26; but what if I’m looking for a top-player like, for example, Lucas, Neymar, Eriksen, Bale, Modric, etc.? Every one of them is like 18-21 years old and they already have stats like 80-84 at the beginning. So how did they get there? How do they reach 88/89 OVR in just one year? I think that in 4 years of scouting in a top-club like I played, I just got unlucky since all my youngsters have potential between 75min/91max, some of them 85/91, but they just come out of the academy with OVR 60/70max which needs like 8 years to develop properly (I’m being ironic, those players should be proper beasts!); during this time I should reach the champion’s league final, win all the trophies (yes those are my objectives) and still use those lame youngsters to do so, in order to develop them? How is that possible? This thing really pisses me off…So am I missing something/doing something wrong or what should I do to find a young player that starts playing with an OVR like 75/80 by age 18/19, or just starts with 65 but then develops by 5 points-a-year (which should lead soon to have a top-player like I said above)?

      • Before the patch it was very possible to get very young, very good players. In my pre-patch save I have a 17 year old rated 76, two 77 OVR 18 year olds, a 77 OVR 17 year old, two 75 OVR 17 year olds, etc. I think, from the developers’ point of view, it’s about realism. How many players are there of, say, Neymar’s age and ability in the world? 10? Not even that? So a real life club would be extremely lucky to find someone that good. Most players in real life reach their peak about 27, 28, so this is what the FIFA developers were probably thinking when they nerfed the player growth. Unfortunately that means it’s not quite as ridiculous/fun as it used to be, and we have to be a bit more patient with youth player growth.

        As for your second question, I don’t think players can improve their skill rating (although I think their weak foot can improve). I don’t know if it’s anything to do with the patch or whether I’ve just been lucky, but a lot of scouted players that I’ve found (and realised in order to see their OVR) since installing the patch have had much higher weak foot/skill moves ability than pre-patch. This has particularly been the case for wingers. Also, if a winger is, say, RM but left footed, his weak foot is now almost always either 4 or 5 stars for me. Of course, I also have a 4/3 (weak foot/skills) CB, as in the old days… I wouldn’t necessarily get rid of wingers with low skill moves, seeing as they may have awesome dribbling skills, in which case you can dance your way past defenders without having to rely on skill moves.

  8. Does the difficult of the career mode (world class, begginer, etc.) affect the player’s development? If i’m playing on world class, does he grow faster than if i’m playing on begginer?


    • I’m pretty sure it doesn’t have a direct impact. However, the way it could affect it is that games will become harder to win – if you lose more games your players will have bad form, and so may not grow as quickly. However, I don’t really know how much bad form affects growth, and if you have a high potential player he may still grow relatively fast even if he’s playing badly.

  9. “The youth player in question is 16. For some reason, other clubs never take 16 year olds on loan. However, they will quite readily take 17 year olds on loan. So, to avoid this problem, either put off signing youth players to your first team until they are 17, or if you have already signed them aged 16 you will have to wait to put them out on loan when they are 17. If your player is indeed 17 and you still get no loan offers then you were probably just unlucky – reload your backup save (at the start of the transfer window) and try again.”

    I have a 16 year old spanish keeper yet i managed to get him out on loan.

    • Then you had more luck than me lol. I think it is possible to loan 16 year old (as you’ve shown) but it’s extremely rare. I think it reflects real life – not many teams would be willing to take on a completely unproved player of 16 (essentially a boy).

      I also think that, unless you have a superstar 16 year old, loaning them out that early is probably counter-productive because they probably won’t be good enough to get much game time at the club they’re loaned to. I prefer to keep youth players in the academy as long as possible so they get guaranteed growth.

      • Hi! what I noticed is that those new young players are considered as new acquisitions, so it’s as improbable to loan a new 16yro player as it would be to loan david villa if you’ve just bought him. Once you promote a young player to the first team, put him to loan or transfer and immediately put him off the loaning or transfering list, so the next period you will be able to loan him.
        Now my only doubt is if they will develop properly if I play them in a different position they are recommended; i.e. if I have an ST and I can only play him as RW, would he still develop????

        (I hope you understood my comment, as english is not my first language)

      • That’s a really good idea actually, I’ll have to try that. Thanks for suggesting it.

        Yep, they’ll still develop well, the only potential problem is that (I suspect) his stats will develop in the striker area, rather than the winger area (i.e. finishing rather than dribbling, etc). This would mean that over time he’d become less useful as a winger. Of course, I may be wrong – players may develop according to where they play.

        Also, your English is fine.

  10. So is it worth using a youth academy now that growth has decreased so much because of the November patch
    I mean if you’re not gonna play many seasons what’s the point
    Do you know how to reverse the effects of this patch
    Its quite annoying because if I wanna develop my best player to around the 80s its gonna take 8 seasons if he grows twice per season and I don’t wanna play that many seasons. I’ll play 5 seasons max before I get bored

    • I think it depends on how you play the game. If you like scouting simply for the idea of it all and think it adds a nice realistic touch to the game, then this is not so much of a problem. If, on the other hand, you scout in order to find seriously good players, then it may be more annoying.

      HOWEVER, although growth seems to be a bit slower now, it’s not glacier-like slow. One of my goalkeepers (not scouted) only played half the games of my last season and still grew 3 points (which was a lot even before the update). So it is possible for players to grow more than just 2 points a season. Players that you leave in the youth academy can grow loads (3, 4 or even 5 points a season), so leave them in there as long as possible.

      I’d say stick with it for now and see how it is for you. If you think it’s taking too long, there are plenty of non-scouted players who already have high OVR that you could buy instead.

      PS I don’t think you can reverse the effects of the patch, I wanted to delete it myself but couldn’t find it in the game files or on my hard drive.

      • FYI deleting your system cache (on 360, not sure if you can do it on PS3) will delete the patch. As long as you don’t play online then you can just play the pre-patch version and enjoy the old player growth system!

      • Really? I thought it was the UGC data that you had to delete. How do you clear the cache anyway?

        The problem is that I have lots of saved custom formations, and before the patch I often had glitches where they’d break and I’d have 8 goalkeepers all with no name and -1238124 OVR or something. If I tried to change anything, the game would freeze. Luckily I could restore my saved career files thanks to the hospitality settings, but if I can’t go online (which will be the case if I delete the patch) then I can’t backup my files, so it’s too much of a risk for me.

        I think on PC and PS3 there is a specific update file in the FIFA 12 system files that you can delete.

  11. How can you tel if a loaned out youth player is playing?
    It only shows games played in the player report from the same league.

    • You can’t, but I never loan a player out unless I know he’ll get first-team action. When you get the loan offer, select ‘stall’, then go to the transfer screen and look up the team wanting to take your player on loan. If you’re loaning out a 60 rated CB, check the other team’s list of defenders. If they have either 1 or 0 CBs rated 60 or above then accept the loan offer, if not then reject it. You can send players to teams where they’ll be subs, but obviously they won’t get as much game time so won’t develop as much. During this whole process don’t save (or maybe create a backup save), then if you get to the end of the transfer period and you don’t have any good offers you can always reload and try again.

  12. I have a question. Noone, and I mean noone, ever mentions how many games is enough or even ballpark for the youth players. I want to know this bc then I can make an assumption as to how many players it’s possible to develop at a time. I would imagine that getting them ten games each is doable without completely killing team objectives, but anything more than that and I’ll likely have to limit it to one, maybe two players at a time. Noone seems to ever mention what is enough games.

    • That’s because it’s impossible to tell. There is no set number of games a youth should play, it all depends on things like the player’s OVR, your team’s average OVR rating, your youth player’s potential, your fixture list, the league you are in, etc. A youth who has a high potential will probably develop well even if he plays less games than a youth with lower potential.

      I am in the process of writing an article recommending teams for career mode because scouting depends very heavily on this. I believe you should never choose a team in the top division, because there will be too many strong opposition teams to make you able to afford to play your young players often. Furthermore, your team itself will likely be full of either 1) already high OVR players, and/or 2) high potential (non-scouted) youths. Therefore I feel lower-rated teams are much better for scouted players because there will be a better chance of you being able to play them. If you have promoted lots of youth players and are in a difficult league then you may feel you can’t play them all enough without losing lots of games. If this is the case, loan them out (but make sure it’s to teams that play them in the first squad) to make sure they get game time.

      It’s not that people are being obtuse when they don’t give a recommended number of games for your scouted players, it’s just that it’s very difficult to tell and depends on a number of factors. For example, I have a youth player who has a potential of 83-89. He’s played 15 games so far this season (about halfway through, so he’s played in most games) and has grown 2 points. However, I can’t say that you should play all youth players this much, because if he had a lower potential then 15 games may not have been enough to make him grow 2 points.

      I hope this helps.

  13. Hey, first of all: i cant thank you enough for all the shared knowledge!

    secondly i’d like to ask the wise wizard a question: Is it possible to find the potential of any of your scouted players after you signed them? I found that question here unanswered, so there we go.

    Another question: all my players have an average rating of 6.0-6.9, i somehow just cant play better xD anyway, is this bad or good for the developement of my youthplayers?

    and last but not least: Is it fair to assume that if u sign a scouted player and you play him 100% of the time, his growth will be the same if you loan him out and he is the best guy for his position in that team? Shortly that is: does his growth only depend on the ammount of games+form he gets, and not where or how? Cause i remember from pokémon that personally trained pokemons usually came out better then freshly caught high lvl pokémons 😛


    • No problem, thanks!

      In answer to your first question, I don’t think you can ever find a player’s “true” or exact potential; just take down a note of his potential range (e.g. 82-88) just before you promote him from the academy, and that will give you a rough idea. I don’t think you can get more exact than that, unfortunately. There is a link between a youth player’s cost and their OVR (i.e. the cost that you see when you release them and then find them again in the free agents), but I don’t think you can get any hints about their potential from this.

      Secondly, strangely enough, I think youth players with high potentials will (probably) grow well as long as you give them game time, regardless of performance. Well, probably not totally regardless of performance, but I think as long as you play them lots they should grow well. Do you actually play games or sim them? Because FIFA has a funny habit of giving players bad ratings even when you win games; if you sim games and win, your players will always get good ratings.

      Thirdly, I don’t think loaned out players grow as much as players in your team. My loaned players usually grow 1-2 points per season, and I always make sure I loan them to teams that will actually regularly play them. Then again, in the November update I think it was said that they’d fixed loaning out players so that they actually grow. I wouldn’t worry too much, the difference between loaning and playing your youth players is likely to be negligible (1 OVR growth point max, I expect). And nice analogy 😛

      Hope this helps.

  14. do you know if youth players will still grow if you set them in the starting lineup and then sim their games? And if so is it as fast?

    • That’s what I do, and I expect it works just as fast as if you play games (I don’t know for sure because I don’t actually play many games). I think player growth also depends on factors like age and potential. If you have a 16 year old, 60 OVR and potential 75 then he may only grow 1 point per season, but he’d still reach his potential eventually. If, on the other hand, you have a 25 year old, 60 OVR and potential 75, then he will grow much quicker (2-3 points per season) in order to reach his potential before he stops growing.

      Back to the main point, I don’t think there’s really a difference between simming and playing games, the bigger differences are likely to be due to age, OVR, potential, game performance, etc.

  15. Another question for you. What about skills? All my young players come out of the academy with 1/2/3 max stars to represent their skill moves ability. Sometimes I find myself playing with a 17yr old winger who’s unable to do any skill move because he just has one star, I find this to be very annoyng as I tend to try some nasty dribbles for fun. As those youngsters develop do they improve skill moves too or not? Otherwise I’m going to sell every player with one star skill, ’cause I just don’t want them..

  16. I’m going to quote you, because I can’t reply on that post. You wrote:
    “Before the patch it was very possible to get very young, very good players. In my pre-patch save I have a 17 year old rated 76, two 77 OVR 18 year olds, a 77 OVR 17 year old, two 75 OVR 17 year olds, etc. I think, from the developers’ point of view, it’s about realism. How many players are there of, say, Neymar’s age and ability in the world? 10? Not even that? So a real life club would be extremely lucky to find someone that good. Most players in real life reach their peak about 27, 28, so this is what the FIFA developers were probably thinking when they nerfed the player growth. Unfortunately that means it’s not quite as ridiculous/fun as it used to be, and we have to be a bit more patient with youth player growth.”

    I’d like to reply to that. Although I take all your answers and advise as truth and wisdom, in my humble opinion this is not entirely realistic.
    In real life young players grow fast. When they are making their debut in a first squad of a high ranked team for example, they grow amazingly fast in their first season or 2 seasons. After that their growth becomes less and less untill finally they reached their ‘potential’ and are on their top of what they will ever be. Especially youngsters of which talent is spotted at an early age will develop extremely fast.

    The positive thing about that early development is that a young player IN REAL LIFE goes from unusable (say a rating of 60-65) through a rapid growth to reliable and usable for a first team (say a rating of 70+, when he has a potential of 80+). This is a growth they have to make fast before they are considered useless. This is in my opinion what happens in real life. If you disagree, tell me.

    Therefore what FIFA needs to do is give player a growth-curve:
    90| xo
    | x o x
    80| x o x
    | x o x
    70| x o
    | x o
    60 xo- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    In this example, the o is what it currently is, and the x is what it (in my opinion) should be.
    Its not something accurate, but you should get the point.

    So, because of the low early ratings and constant growth of youthplayers in FIFA they are unusable untill a late age (say 22), and because you cant keep them in a youthsquad from 16-18 (what the heck? why not? as if a 16 year old youngster from real madrid would leave…), it is unpractical to develop your own youthplayers. Mainly because if you DON’T play them, they dont grow, and if you DO play them you lose your matches.

    You can say this is more realistic, and I think it is, but not by that much. Moreover: the huge setback is that it ruins the gameplay by that much it was definately not worth changing.

    Unless FIFA is going to do something to make you able to develop your own youthplayers (for example: by giving cpu-players a random but realistic growthcurve), i will only ever develop one player per team myself with a ridiculous high potential. The rest will be bought. .. and maybe i will develop my own keeper too, those dont bother me by that much.


    • fck, i made a very good graph.. but you will have to imagin it now =.=
      90|———————————- xo—————————-
      —| ———————–x —-o ———————-x———–
      80| ————-x ——–o ———————————–x—-
      —| ——–x ——-o ———————————————x
      70|— x—- –o—————————————————–
      —|- x —o———————————————————-
      60 xo- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

      lets hope this works, cause double spaces are deleted, lets see what double hyphons do.

    • Agreed. Totally. That’s exactly what I was trying to say. Take Bale for example: in game he has OVR like 86 (???) by age 21 and reaches highest potential (90) by age 26, which means a slightly slow curve in those 5 years, starting from that 86 that means on the other hand he had a fast growth during age 17/18/19/20, that you don’t actually perceive as the game starts later. That’s my point, which is valid for all top-young-players too. Maybe in fifa12 i just got unlucky, but my only worthy player, actually usable in a competition, has OVR 70 and potential 85-91. That’s it, there are no other players I can actually set in first team, cause of their OVR 60-65 meaning that once you sim a match you lose, consistently. I guess this development system is a big disappointment and a big lost chance of enjoyment for this game, since as happened to me, after 4th year of CM you’re trying to develop a different manager approach to the game itself, only to find out it’s impossible to keep both achieving great results and developing youngsters.

      • You make some good points and I’ve tried to answer them in my response to Rimo below. In relation to losing games if you play your youth players, does this still happen if you only play 1 youth player and surround him with awesome first teamers? You could try playing the games rather than simming them, because that way I think it’s less about a player’s OVR and more about what you do with him.

    • You make a very good point about young players rapidly growing in real life. However I’d still say that young players who grow to be as good as Neymar or Jack Wilshere at age 18 are extremely rare. Most young players do indeed experience rapid growth when they start getting first team experience, but they usually develop from pretty bad to OK (think of how many thousands of young players there are in clubs around the world, and then how many of those are actually good). So whereas before the patch it was great fun because you’d have young, awesome players, now those young players do still become good, but much more slowly. We’ve essentially gone from one extreme to the other – from every youth player rapidly growing to insane quality in 2 years, to youth players not experiencing that OVR burst at all but still eventually becoming good.

      The problem, I think, is that a lot of players choose to do CM as already-good teams like Manchester United or Real Madrid. The problem with this is that 1) these teams already have awesome first team players, and 2) these teams already have lots of high potential young players. This means there’s simply no room for new youth players (as you said, if you play them you lose). This is why I recommend starting with a fairly low-rated team in order to give your scouted players the opportunity to play in the first team without sacrificing points. I’m in the process of making an article recommending teams for CM and listing reasons for and against them, and I’ll publish it just as soon as I work out how to put tables into WordPress posts…

      Also, I definitely agree with you about the graph. Unfortunately FIFA is quite robotic when it comes to growth.

  17. what do you think to these ideas on fifa 13
    1.) 1.)swap players on career mode.
    2.)be able to send messages to players, owners and managers (like annoy/praise them) on career mode
    3.) when a club bids for a player on career mode ask them for an amount of money like they do to you on fifa 12
    4.)manage national teams on career mode
    5.)build new staduims for teams on career mode
    6.)take out debts and pay them back on career mode
    7.)go into administration on career mode
    8.)ask the owners for a bigger transfer budget on career mode
    9.)have the 3 best youth players for each club in there youth squad on career mode
    10.) player plus cash deals on career mode
    11.)emergency loans on career mode
    12.)more injuries
    13.)have assiastant managers on career mode
    14.)be assistant managers on career mode
    15.)be a scout on career mode
    16.)trial players on career mode
    17.)international breaks on career mode
    18.)fan protests on career mode

    • Well I think a lot of those ideas would steer FIFA much more towards Prem Manager territory. I think numbers 3, 10 and 11 are very good (especially 10 and 11). 17 would also add quite a bit more realism (but may be frustrating!)

    • I think number 12 is realistic to do, because when i play all the matches i barely have injuries. When i sim games i get enough injuries tho, so maybe they should fixt something there.
      number 9 would be awesome ideed.
      and about 5: there can never be enough stadiums, i think they already did good this year.
      I think youthdevelopment requires more attention than any of your 18 points tho. Because it totally ruins the game.

      • So these would be good
        1.) when a club bids for a player on career mode ask them for an amount of money like they do to you on fifa 12
        2.) player plus cash deals on career mode
        3.) emergency loans on career mode
        4.) more injuries
        5.) international breaks on career mode
        6.) have the 3 best youth players for each club in their youth squad on career mode
        7.) improve youth development on career mode

        would these be good
        8.) get scouts to write reports about the real life players you send them to scout on career mode e.g. a report on hazard
        9.) swap players on career mode

  18. Just something I noticed the other day with regards to loaning players out to other clubs and rarely getting any offers coming in, meaning I can only loan a max of 2/3 loan offers in a transfer window (apologies if this has already been said above, I haven’t read all the comments):

    As above, sometimes I rarely ever get a Loan offer from another club, which means I have lots of good potential players who can’t get game time. So to try and get more players out on loan, I tried taking the players off of Loan Status and putting them back straight back on it again (without advancing, although may still work by advancing, I haven’t tried it yet) and within a few days I got a Loan offer through for one of the players.

    By doing this repeatedly, it’s as if to wake other clubs up to the fact they are available for loan, and within one transfer window I got 7/8 players loaned out. Its worth a try if you’re having troubles anyway.

    Hope this helps.

    • How strange. I’ll have to give it a go, as I’m having trouble selling a couple of players at the moment. They always turn down the offers received, and if I try to terminate their contracts in desperation the board tells me I don’t have enough squad depth. This was never a problem before when I had a smaller squad, so I don’t know why it’s suddenly decided I don’t have enough players. I’ll give your trick a go and see if it works 🙂

      • I thought I would give it a go as I noticed every time a player is put up for loan/sale, on the main screen where all the headlines are, one usually comes up about a player you have just put up for loan/sale saying something like “Player A seeks to grasp loan chance” and thats where I got the idea from.

        Let me know if it works for you as well, we could be on to something here 🙂

  19. I put all my youth players on loan, and I never received more than 3 offers.
    Can i put on loan more than 3 players?
    Sorry for my english 😀

  20. In my opinion the greatest improvements to CM would be these (I hope for them to happen in fifa13):
    1)Swap players. OK
    2)Chance to share property of a player with another team, and resolve it or postpone it every year, choosing which side the player is gonna play for.
    3)Disable the “team rivalry” issue which leads to players refusing your contract “because they’re our rivals and they won’t sell as cheap as we’d want”, which is lame since too many teams have random rivals and simply can’t buy from some other teams (also not because the team refuses to sell a player, but he himself refuses the contract….IDIOTIC!!!) .
    4)Longer list half full of players which build a randomly generated academy team, different from first team, where you can swap young players from/to first team whenever you want in order to let them develop. This would lead to:
    4a)Academy team: when you scout a player he ends up in here, until he’s like 21/22 (MAX). Later you have to keep him in first team or release him. Growth in this team should be stuck to 1/2 points-year in order to develop not so fast. Chance is to swap the player to first team, maybe for a couple of matches to test him, then put him back on Academy team.
    4b)First team+youngsters: players growth should become faster as actually 22 yr old players are often top or low players yet. So a 25 yr old should not grow much more than a player from academy (1/2 points-a-year MAX) while a young player (maybe one from the academy team you can swap to first team) should grow like 6/8 points-a-year max, depending on how much you play him on the field.

    These points should lead to this scenario: whatever team I choose at start, I already have an academy team where to pick my youngsters. It’s up to me to play them or not. I can use my budget to buy top-players or develop my academy players: swapping is important to give a chance to change your mind on the run. As youngsters grow faster in first time you’re more likely to play with them, then maybe after a couple of years you can build a better team by yourself. It’s important that this can happen after MAX 2 years, so if you want to change team you can do it without starting all over again. What do you think?

    • Great post, I think the academy would be a great idea. Luckily for me I’ve never suffered from the issue in 3), but it does sound a bit ridiculous. I can imagine the reasoning behind it, but come on – we play FIFA to enjoy it, not to be frustrated 😛

      I think 2) could be a little confusing though. But 1) would be a very good idea; being able to use a player as a bargaining chip would definitely make transfers more interesting (and realistic).

      • Maybe you should have the chance to invest in upgrading the coaches of your youth squad to make the scouted players grow faster before you offer them a contract?

      • Possibly, it would be something interesting. Have to see whether they put it in FIFA 13, because I’ve seen other people say they want something similar as well.

  21. on fifa 13 you should get a scout to look at a first team player at a different club and say who they are similar to, who else has scouted the player and suggest a bid to make for the player.

    e.g. sergi samper similar to xavi, chelsea and arsenal possibly interested. suggested bid £5.5milion

    another example

    neymar similar to ronaldo, barcalona, real madrid and manchester city possibly interested. suggested bid £45million

      • also put recently signed young players into academy team if u want.

        e.g. put alvaro morata into arsenals reserve team (if he was signed by arsenal like on my career mode)

    • Interesting idea, I think FIFA 11 had something similar with the ‘Scout recommendations’ in the transfer window. Except I think that just listed players who were for sale or loan (which was stupid, but I think the idea was that the scout tells you players who’d be good for your team).

      Putting young players in the academy would be a great idea, especially if you’re a big club and the young players may not get into your first team.

    • It’s annoying, AI squad rotation is non-existent. When you get an offer, click stall then check them out in the transfer screen to see if he would actually make the starting 11 – if yes, let him go there, if not, reject the offer.

  22. I usually play my games (not sim) … how will this affect the ability for my players to reach their potential? Is it based solely on minutes (game time) … or is it a function of the end-of-game match rating? My match ratings are always between 5.5 and 7.0 … not great – but not awful. I can control gametime and appearances with squad rotation … but the match rating always seems to be ambiguously low. Will this mean that I cannot have a young player reach (or near) the top potential?

    Thanks – love the site!

    • If you sim games your players get better ratings. For some reason, even if you win comfortably, if you play games your players get lower ratings. It’s annoying, but just how it is. However, on my pre-patch CM I only simmed around half the games, and still experienced incredible player growth. Now, I’m hearing reports that the winter roster update has bumped up player growth again. I don’t know if it’s true, it’s a bit early to tell, but if it is true then I don’t think it should matter too much whether you play or sim, as your players should grow well either way. If it’s not true, however, then I’d recommend you sim more games – player ratings seem to affect growth (probably not loads, but a bit at least).

      Hope that’s clear! And thanks, glad it’s useful for you!

  23. You’re doing a great job, man! Keep it up.

    I was wondering, because I’ve noticed that young players in other clubs develop really fast and reach their potential in just 3 seasons or so. But my own players seems to grow a lot slower, maybe just one or two points per season. In that way, they often don’t reach their potential. How come the other players from the other clubs grow so much faster than my own?

    I usually pick players with high potential and give them a lot of playing time, but still – they don’t grow as much as I would like. Can it be that I don’t play well enough?

    I would appreciate some help here.

    • Thanks 🙂

      I don’t really know, it’s as if the November patch (i.e. slowed player growth) only applies to your players, not players on AI teams. However, we can take advantage of this – if you have a player who is growing slowly (but has high potential), sell him to a team that you know will play him (click stall, then check them out in the transfer screen). After a few seasons he should have grown well, and you can then buy him back if you want. Of course, he’ll be a lot more expensive, so you need to have the funds, but this type of ‘extended loan’ is a great way of maximising your players’ growth if you don’t have room for them in your squad.

      I *think* it probably works even better than loaning players, seeing as then they’re technically still on your team (and thus may grow at the rate of your squad players, not that of players on AI teams). Of course, this is just my speculation, but it’s worth considering. The potential for success of ‘extended loans’ isn’t speculation, however, and I’d recommend giving it a try.

      Also, do you play or sim matches? Because annoyingly FIFA gives your players better ratings if you sim games (often even if you play matches and win them all convincingly). Player performance does affect their growth (I’m not sure how much exactly, but it does), so in order to increase the chances of your players growing you should probably sim as many games as you can. Plus, that way you get through the seasons quicker and have to wait less real time until your players get decent OVRs.

      • Thanks for answer!
        So what’s the deal with the November Patch?
        I like to play a lot of my matches, so maybe I should consider to simulate more than I do. I’m not really sure what AI (artificial intelligence?) is, would you bother explaining me? And also, if I play some players on positions they’re not actually playing (like a striker on the winger, or winger on the CAM) does this affect the player growth in any way?

      • In my experience, it doesn’t matter the position you play them; they will develop as they were designed by the system (that includes either academy youngsters and real youngsters). I don’t know about development rates, but wherever you loan your young players they will develop at similar rates… I’ve already tried the selling them for a season and check latter, my results: they develop even slower :S (I’m only at 3rd season). About the time you play them, I’ve played them A LOT, sometimes I’ve cheated (I accept it) to increase their form (they’re almost always around 7.5 and 9.5 form) and they haven’t develop that fast; however, if I play them in IMPORTANT matches (even if they get horrible ratings), they grow a little faster (but not that much). I suppose everything is about patience… and as I’m playing with the Hull City, I have found it more useful to sell (most of) them rather than develop them (but once in a while, a great jewel comes out from the academy).
        BTW, I found one GREAT bug on the game 🙂 I’m gonna tell you about it later, as I’m supposed to be working 😛

      • That’s odd that your “long term loan” (i.e. selling for a season then buying back) didn’t work. Maybe you just need to wait a few more seasons before buying them back. Did you make sure to sell them to a team that would definitely play them?

        I think you’re right about important games. I read on the EA forums how one person has had a look at the growth code (on PC) and noticed that important games (cup finals, derbies, etc) have a modifier that slightly increases growth. There are other things too, such as a player is more likely to be loaned if he’s in the reserves rather than on the bench, and even more than if he’s in the starting 11.

        So what’s this great bug then? 🙂

      • Ohhhh the bug!!! I almost forgot telling you about it!
        As I told you, I am playing with Hull City… small and poor team, but after some interesting businesses I finally had enough money to buy better players before the 3rd season. Then I found that this bug has a name himself: Sandro 🙂 (Tottenham). You can usually find him in the transfer list, and he’s not that expensive so I offered a sum, and the bug starts once tottenham (or anyone else) accepts it… I offered sandro a salary of $100 usd (I play with dollars, as I am used to the dollars), 20% bonus per goal, 5 years…. AND HE ACCEPTED IT!!! Obviously I saved the game in case it was one time only bug… and kept trying my luck. Long story short: I got Thiago, and J. Rodwell for $100 salary too!! (after that, I rejected sandro… as I had limited money and I already had rodwell).
        Then I went to my Liverpool saved game, with far much money and starting the 3rd season too… just to try my luck there. I did the same thing, and the bug worked again! 🙂
        The results: Thiago, Kaká (he was in the transfers list), Sandro, Phillipe Coutinho, M. Balotelli, and many other players in the transfers list for only $100 usd salary 🙂 And believe me… for such a small team like Hull City, IT’S ONE GREAT BUG!!
        This bug didn’t work when I didn’t offer it to sandro first… and only works with players in the transfers list… try it and tell me if it worked for you too 😉

        About the selling young academy players, I do sell them to small teams; as a matter of fact, my best clients are in Poland and npower1/2.

      • That… is… hilarious!

        I’ll give it a go, but I use £ so it may not work, but I’ll let you know. How did you afford the transfer fees?

      • No problem. The November patch addressed some issues that various players were pointing out, namely that physical growth was ridiculously quick (by season 5 you’d have 150+ players with 99 sprint and acceleration, or something like that). So they slowed it right down, but they seem to have slowed overall growth right down as well. Before the patch a player would reach his potential around 24; now it’s around 28. What this means is that if a player misses out on a season’s worth of growth (and this happens all the time; computer teams don’t understand squad rotation and the idea of fielding your high potential players) then he’s unlikely to ever reach his potential, which really sucks. The overall effect is that other teams become totally mediocre, because they never play their promising your players, so have no good players once their old players retire. As usual, EA created a much bigger problem by trying to solve a relatively small one.

        AI is indeed artificial intelligence, by that I just mean any team that isn’t controlled by you (i.e. computer-controlled teams on your career).

        I’d recommend simming games. For example I just won a game 4-1 (by playing rather than simming), yet only 2 players got a rating over 7.0. If I’d simmed that, probably all of them would have got a rating of 7.0 or higher.

        Also, iaN has addressed your final question well.

      • Ok, that’s great because I often let my player play at different positions like the striker on the winger and so on.

        But I’ve got a problem with my virtual pro i Career Mode.

        I was playing for 2 seasons, and was moving on to the third. My team was MSV Duisburg, and my virtual pro had done well for 2 seasons. Then suddenly when i started the third season, my virtual pro disappeared. I’ve tried to start new CM’s, but when I choose my team, the screen shows him on the starting 11 at the team I’ve choosen. But when I move on passed the playing difficulty and all that stuff and into my CM, the first thing I usually do is to manage my team. Then I find out that my virtual pro is not there after all. It seems like its a damn glitch, and I don’t know what to do with it. It’s annoying the hell out of me. Have you got any solutions?

      • That’s really weird, I’ve never seen that before (but then again I don’t play with a virtual pro). Have you tried posting the problem on the EA FIFA 12 forums to see if anyone there can help? That’s a pretty good place to try.

  24. Yeah try it and tell us! About the transfer fees… with hard work and patience :S 1st season: I sold everybody but A. Dawson (the only loyal player of the real team) and M. Fryatt (the “most expensive” but still cheap). Instead, I bought a lot of young players (3 kinds: recommended in other forums, fast, and free agents with the potential of being sold for a good price)… and J. Smith as GK. January 1st season: I sold M. Fryatt for 2.5x his price, and hired more free agents with $potential. It was hard but I won the FAcup and its prize 🙂 also I made it to the BPL 2nd season: Thanks to M. Fryatt, the prize and some free agents I sold, I had enough cash to buy S. Khedira as an investment project 🙂 (knowing in advance that I’d be able to sell him for almost 3x his price, as I did in my Liverpool save). Also, I made it to sell some other young players, so I had enough cash to hire a cheap scouter too (english, 3stars exp, 4 opinion). As you mentioned in your tips… saving/reloading was clue to get good 16yo scouted players, and: January 2nd s: I sold at least 6 young players for some millions!! Other of my initial young players was sold for $11.5M usd (around 7.6M £ ) so in the deadline day I was rich enough to buy A. Ramsey, C. Vela, B. Bannan and still I had enough money left to hire a new scouter (5/5 stars). 3rd season: It was more difficult to sell young players but, as I pretended, I sold S. Khedira… however, it wasn’t for the $44M (29M£ ) I pretended… but $84M!!!! (56M£ !!!) so I bought Thiago, J. Rodwell, Boilessen and Bojan 🙂 hired 2 free agents with good price potential and everything was sponsored by Khedira (: I also hired and italian 5/5 scouter, fired the 3/4 english, and hired a 5/5 brazilian instead So now I have a competitive squad, around $40M (27M£ ) budget, one nice group of scouter… and expectation for the next transfer period because I have no room for any other player in my team as I already hired some scouted players. As you can see… the scouted players were clue to build a nice squad, but I had to sell most of them to achieve a descent squad. I’m only developing 5 of them (amazing players, amazingly valuated too). Pros: I’m having a lot more fun than when I was playing with Liverpool and its huge budget. Cons: 1) Many players reject playing for such a “small” team like Hull City, it doesn’t matter if this team is doing better than many big teams. 2) You can’t simulate many games, cuz you’ll lose most of them. 3) If you want to buy a HUGE player from a huge team (i.e. D. Villa), the huge team makes fun of you 😦 and the salary is not negotiable.

    This answer would be a complete article lol I hope it’s useful for somebody

    • Unfortunately I don’t have any saves that are at that point (3rd season), as they’re all past that now. Try posting it on the FIFA 12 forums (here) and see what other people think, because it could be that other people have noticed something similar.

      Buying free agents is always a good idea, but how did Khedira not say you weren’t prestigious enough? I mean, you were in the BPL, but still… Real Madrid to Hull? 😛 And that sale price… crazy. Did you keep turning down a club until they offered that, or did they offer it out of the blue?

      And how did you sell your scouted players so soon after promoting them? Or do you mean you sold young players (e.g. free agents) that you’d previously bought? Do you know whether they’ve grown much at their new clubs?

      Ah but if players say you’re not prestigious enough then it just means there’s more emphasis on scouting good players 😉

      Great post, thanks for all the info 🙂

      • * Guess what, I opened a new career just to see if it happened there too… and it did happen! So I suppose it would happen in any other season.
        * I know! When you try to buy someone that is not on the transfer list, they usually refused my offers 😦 but it didn’t happen with the guys in the list… I suppose they don’t have another option but negotiating a fair contract… And in the moment I decided to sell him, first he was 84 OVR (I got him when he was 81), so the first offer I revieved was already high. Also, I had Bayern Munich and Everton fighting for him (BM won, but Everton was also offering a crazy amount). But yeah, I turned them both down every “3 days left” until the deadline day 🙂 [then I bought Bojan and Boilesen] [PS: none of them ever refused the contract, by the way].
        * I’m talking about the scouted player just promoted! I also sold the free agents without any potential, but I’m talking about my unreal scouted players. Once I promote them, I give them as much playtime as possible to (at least) give them an acceptable form. But once you promote them, you can either put them on loan or sale.. Nobody wants to borrow them, but plenty of small teams will ask you for their price. I put them on sale one month after the transfer period. The only problem you’d probably find is that some of those players will refuse leaving your team 😦 [it usually happens with those players with really good potential] BUT I think I’ve solved this problem by rising their small salary to a Pro one . I’ll keep my experiments. I keep the record of the best scouted players I’ve sold and their growth with their new teams…. and they’re not growing faster than the ones I keep u_U in fact, they haven’t grown anything.
        * As I mentioned it, it really is important to scout good players 🙂 In my case, they’re my main current assets 😛 and help me to buy one nice investment project for season. However, some of those players are so good that I don’t think I will ever sell them.
        * Good news! I bought David Villa on the deadline day (and nobody made fun of the Hull) 😛 and 3 weeks later, after a game vs Chelsea, at least 5 players grew up and made of my team a 4 1/2 stars club 🙂

      • Waaat? So you just started a new career, made an offer for him, then offered him $100 (plus perks) and he accepted again? Does he have to be for sale if you start a new CM?

        Nice one, an awesome return on your investment 🙂

        So you put them on sale despite the fact that no one could buy them? How come? Yeah I often find they refuse to move, which is annoying to say the least! I do that too, it’s always nice to see them growing well. Although their growth once you sell them seems to be a bit hit and miss. On my pre-patch save there are 3 scouted players that I’ve sold, and one year later one of them hasn’t grown at all, one’s grown 1 or 2 points, whilst the other has gone crazy and grown about 4 points. I made sure to sell them all to teams that would play them, so I don’t know why the growth seems to be so random.

        Yeah I love how scouting can essentially save a lower league team. Most can’t afford to buy existing players with high potential, so scouting them is a much better option. It’s made career mode much more playable if you don’t like playing as Manchester United, Real Madrid, etc.

        Haha nice one! Good to see you can attract world-class talent 🙂

  25. I’ve been playing for a season and a half and the players I’ve tried to sign off of the youth squad once they turn 16 aren’t showing up on my roster. I’m trying to figure out if this is some kind of glitch or if I’m doing something wrong. I’m not getting any emails saying they have declined the offers.

  26. Figured out the issue. When you advance using the calendar it will skip some of the emails. Just using the advance tool worked just fine. Now I’ve just got to get these guys loaned out.

    • Ah I see, I didn’t even know you could advance using the calendar! 😛

      It seems that you can’t loan players out just after they’ve been promoted, you have to wait until the start of the next season. It’s really stupid and unrealistic, but I think what EA have done is they’ve tried to say you can’t get rid of a player just after you’ve bought him (i.e. you can’t sell Rooney on one week after you’ve bought him in order to make a quick profit), but unfortunately it’s extended to scouted players as well, as the game seems to equate promoting them with buying them. Annoying, I know, but there’s not a lot we can do about it except wait until the start of the next season :/

      Also, make sure you loan them out to teams that will play them in order to maximise their growth! 🙂

      • Lol im also playing morrison redmond and adryn they all have high potentiol. Ut they wont grow no matter what

  27. Pingback: Help for the November patch update | FIFA Scouting Tips

  28. Hello, i was just wondering if you could help out with a query of mine. I have always wondered if a youth player will grow as well if you are only simming the matches they play in as opposed to playing in the matches. Or is it just the same. thank you in advance!

    • I think it’s the same. I used to believe that simming would help players develop better because I thought players got better ratings when games were simmed than when you actually played them. However, after a bit of comparison it seems match ratings are actually very similar for both playing and simming, so at the end of the day I don’t think it makes a difference.

  29. hi I have a a player two playes I have been growing for a couple of seasons
    One is a cb with pot 82-88 now at 83 ovr at age

    the other is a st with pot 83-89 now at 85 over at age 21

    both haven’t grown in 2 seasons are they as good as they will get

    • I’m not sure; possibly. Are you playing with the November patch installed? Because if not, players grow really fast and thus reach their potential really early.

      However, sometimes players have a blip and barely grow for a season or two, then start again. So it could be that their growth will begin again soon. Just keep playing them and keep making sure they get good ratings. In any case, 83 and 85 are really good OVRs to have in your squad!

  30. They dont growww !! Im playing andreas romano, and he just wont grow he started as 60 ovr amd he was 18 went i got him he is now 19 and ive played him every single game so far which is about 30 games already and he is only 63 over he also has high potentiol he is suppose to be an 80 ovr

    • Also have been playing Crisetig who i got when he was 18 he was 67 ovr he is now a 70 he is 19 i think he also has high potentiol o think its a 84

      • Dude, they won’t grow automatically… or any soon; it takes time (plenty) so you must be patient. In fact, i would say your are developing so fast. If you keep reading, you’ll find out that some people says they fully develop around their 26/28 yo… some of them sooner, but they always develop, if you give them enough

      • Thank you iAN i justbstarted reading and i see that my guys are growing pretty good umm but inkinda took the fun iut what i did was i went to cpu custimation and made it that the opponent would have zero speed and acceleration allowing me to breeze right through them giving my players high rating after 4 perfect games they grow one point so fat is what i notticed but this is definitly not fun

      • I agree it’s not fun to play this way, and it’s also useless! So you can stop doing it whenever you want to, as every player has his growth rate pre-designed. Maybe you haven’t noticed, but some players grow even when they’re in the reserves, some others suddenly grow when you give them some rest after some games. Most of them grow after difficult or important matches… and one season they can grow only 1 point, and next season they fully develop by growing 4-5 points (i.e. M. Balotelli… he grew so slow from 81 to 83 (in 1 and a half season)…. and suddenly, he grew from 83 to 86 in the second half of a season.
        So I suppose growth rates are predetermined by the game with different rules for every player… I’m still wondering how to make El Shaarawy grow faster, but I suppose he’ll suddenly grow like crazy.
        Summary: Maybe their match ratings are not as important as the challenges they face during a season, so you can have as much fun as you wish and they’ll still develop the same way.

      • Thanks iaN for the input, you’ve got a lot of good tips. Here are a few tips and ideas I have regarding player growth.

        1) There are lots of things that affect player growth. Mainly it’s game time and player performance, but as iaN says, important games (local derbies, cup finals, etc) give your players more experience. Sometimes it seems to be almost random – on my Huddersfield career mode Alex Smithies grew a point even though he’d been sat on the bench for 2 weeks! So yes, sometimes I guess you just need to be patient and stick with it.

        2) iaN is right about players developing at different times. Interestingly, I had a similar thing with El Shaarawy in a different career mode. I bought him from Milan when he was 77 OVR at age 23 I think. He was languishing in the reserves, so I thought “hey, he’ll probably grow a few points, maybe to 83 or so before he stops growing”. First season he only grew 1 point, waste of £9m I thought! But then the next two seasons he grew 4 points each, now he’s worth almost £50m! Because he had a lot of growing to do and not many years in which to do it, it seems like the game sort of squeezed his growth in as much as possible. So if you have a player who has high potential, don’t worry, he’ll make it as long as you play him enough. Some players grow early in their careers, some grow lots at the end, and some just grow steadily throughout. It almost seems to be different for each player.

        3) Rather than turning the opposition down to 0 speed, why not just sim the games? You’ll get a lot more done and you’ll see your players grow in much less (real life) time. Simming doesn’t make players grow more quickly, but you’ll probably get through 10 games in the time it takes you to play 2.

        4) Before the November update, players used to grow so much at the start (like 4-7 points per season). The problem was that this meant they peaked at around age 22-23, so it became kinda boring after that. Now they’ve slowed the growth down much more so there’s more longevity.

        Hope this answers some questions for both of you 🙂

  31. I found a way around the bug when signing players.

    You sign out of Xbox live/Playsation network, then go to ‘Game Data’ and delete the patch. start up the game without signing back in, go to career mode, then offer your player a contract. works perfectly. 🙂

    then once he’s accepted your offer sign back in and download the patch again(If you wish)!!

    thanks, Gordon.

      • I think they need to reduce transfer fees I mean the world record transfer fee is 80 million and then you have santos sitting there asking for 120 million for neymar that’s a joke.

      • Seriously? He’s not worth that much at first, how long does it take until he goes up to that much?

        The annoying thing is that because he’s in an “inferior” league, no big teams will buy him, so he never moves :/

      • Yeah I usually like to buy him and Lucas from Sao Paulo but I remember I just honestly forgot about them both one career mode and then were both just chilling on their respective teams at like 28 years old. Happens with hulk too

    • save your game before every match, look at the section where you can see the numbers and growth of your players, then play the match. After playing it, go check the same section again and see if anyone grew any individual number or maybe even the overall. Then go back to the main menu and open the saved file (before the game) and simulate it; then, go check that section and see the results.
      In my experience, my players grow more (and better) in the simulated version; however, the CPU shifts the players it wants and sometimes it prefer not to shift any player. Also, it’s not the same to get a result simulated than an earned one.

  32. I can’t seem to get many players loaned (only 1), even after I wait a season. Should I only make them available for loan when the new season starts or is it alright to keep the loan tag on them?

    • I fixed the problem by making them available for loan ONLY WHEN THE NEW SEASON STARTS. Having them as listed for loan from the old season bugs the system for some reason. I was able to get 7 youth players loaned in one transfer window 🙂

      • Ah thanks for the tip 🙂 And oh wow, that’s a lot of players loaned! You must have a large squad, my club board doesn’t like me loaning/selling too many players, which can be frustrating at times haha

    • Getting players loaned is sporadic at best. You could try making a backup save at the start of the transfer period and reloading it if you don’t get any offers. Are you playing pre-patch? Because I think it’s harder to loan players that way.

    • Well once they reach age 18 you can’t keep them in there no matter what. That should be the only time when just reloading won’t solve the problem.

  33. Earlier you were talking about how you bought El Shaaraway when he was 23 and he grew very quickly because he had a lot of growing to do and not much time left to do it. Does this mean that any young player will reach their potential by a certain age as long as they get enough game time?

    • They won’t necessarily always reach it – on my career El Shaarawy actually fell 1 point short of his potential, so there may not be quite enough time for them. However, they will almost certainly grow really quickly and make up the ground. For me on his first season he only grew 1 point, but then he shot up, so just make sure you play them as much as possible and you should be OK.

  34. A way to play your players every match is at the start of the season before the board gives you the league objective, and cup objectives, put the worst players in your starting line up. Then the board will tell you the objective is to avoid relegation, reach round 3 for the cups.

      • does the price of the youthplayers give any indication about how good they will be or their growth or somethibg like that?

      • Yes, but it’s not an absolute guide. Generally speaking, the higher his price tag, the higher his OVR/potential. However, prices do fluctuate, so it’s not set in stone. I once had a youth player who was worth £13m just out of the academy, but when he went from 17 to 18 his value practically halved. However, you can still see that this player will probably grow to be better than a player whose value fluctuates between £3m – £1m.

  35. I have a few questions…

    If I play my substitute players every game for 30 minutes, do they grow like my first team players?

    I’m kind of doing a rotation for my squad, the first team players still grow faster than my second team, the ratio of the game time is first team 60% second team 40%, do you think that’s why? do you think it’s a good idea to do rotation?

    The loan option isn’t working for me, they grow 1, max. 2 point ovrall only when then come back, it’s about as much as if I just put their on my bench, just bad luck?

    • 1) I’m not really sure, I think it’s better to play them more often if you can. For some reason players who come on off the subs bench don’t seem to get very good match ratings, so if you start them or give them longer then they should get better ratings, and therefore grow more quickly.

      2) I rotate my squads a lot, mainly because my players get tired a lot, but also because I have lots of players that I want to develop. Player development on FIFA 12 is a complicated business. You have to consider player potentials. Let’s say you have 2 players – one is only 3 points off his potential, whilst the other is 13 points off his. If the first player plays more games then he may still grow slower than the second player. But in addition to that, player ratings and game time do have an impact. I think putting players in the starting lineup also gives them a slight boost as well. This all seems very confusing, but I wouldn’t worry too much – if you have a player who is some way off his potential, he should grow quickly. The game seems to do all it can to make players reach their potential, so as long as you play them lots then they should grow well. Hope that all makes sense!

      3) It depends who you send them to. Try to get them loaned out to a team that will put them in the starting lineup. When you get a loan offer, click stall, then go to the transfer screen and check out that position on that team. If you player will be the best in that position (or top 2 if he’s a striker, for example), then go to the transfer negotiations screen and accept the offer. If not, reject it. But like I said above, if a player is only set to grow 3 more points and he’s 20 years old, then he likely won’t grow very much out on loan even if you send him to the right team.

      Hope this helps 🙂

      • thank you so much for your reply, waterish!

        1. the thing is I have 30 player squad, and they all come from my youth academy, I want to develop all of them, if just based on rating, I think it s fine, cos the guy I want to develop as a sub is a striker.

        2. I don’t know, they all about the same, potential 85-91, start-up as 65 overall etc, but the first team still grow faster, let’s hope the game does make them develop.

        3. I’ve checked the team before I send them off, but still 1 -2 points, I guess is about the timing of their development, once I sent a guy out and he comes back with 4 additional point in overall, and the next year he only grows 1 point.

        thank you so much!

      • No problem 🙂

        1) Well if you feel you have too many youth player to devote enough time to each of them, loan some out. What works really well is a “long term loan” – sell a player to a team that will definitely play him (click stall, check them out in the transfer screen and make sure he’ll be in their first team). Keep him there for a few seasons, then when he’s grown lots you can buy him back. It’ll be quite expensive, but you can guarantee that he will grow well and be well worth the money.

        2) My answer above might help for this point too.

        3) Growth is sometimes uneven. On one of my CMs I bought Adryan (potential 86). He grew 3-4 points a season most years, then one year he hit a bump and only grew 1 point, despite playing the majority of matches. Next season, however, his growth went back to normal, and he reached his potential eventually. Sometimes it just happens, so I wouldn’t worry too much about it 🙂

      • About the prices… the higher his ovr + youth, the higher his price; however, low potential players, don’t have high ovr… and not all high ovr players have 91 potential.
        Once you promote them, they keep amazing huge prices for a year, then they drop them… so you can sell them while they have insane prices, and by them back some sessions later for a small price, some more ovr points and lit of potential

      • The prices also seem to change around the time of their birthday. They can have a really high price, then turn 18 and it drops right down. As the year progresses (and their OVR rises) their price goes up, before dropping again around their birthday. Well, this is true for players still in your academy (using the release method to see their price/OVR), I’m not entirely sure about players who have been promoted.

      • Typos: by= buy… sessions = seasons… lit= lot. continued: lot of to develop soon.

  36. i have one question : Is there is a way when i sign a youth player to develop him faster – all possibles attributes. For example for CB,CM,ST etc.

    • The best way to get him to grow quickly is simply to play him as much as you can. Getting good match ratings also really helps, so if he’s a striker, scoring goals will help; defenders and goalkeepers benefit from keeping clean sheets, etc.

  37. Is there such a thing as a youth player with more than three star skill moves?? It’s rare enough for me to find a three star skill, but I’ve never come across a four/five star. Is it purely bad luck or does it never happen??

    By the way, keep up the grand work!!

    • I’ve found a couple with 4* skills, but most have had terrible OVRs and I haven’t kept them. I’ve only ever seen one scouted player with 5* skills and he was on another team, although I’ve read people saying they’ve found 5* skillers before. As in real life, though, it’s very rare.

    • Wow he sounds amazing! What’s his position?

      Play him as much as you can if possible – if there’s only a slight gap between his OVR and the starting player’s OVR (e.g. 3-4 points or so) then definitely play him, cos he’ll grow and soon catch up. If there’s a bigger gap (e.g. if he’s a CB and your starting CBs have OVR 80 and 81 or something) then loan him out for a few seasons. He’s only 17 so it’s not a problem; I often loan my promoted players out until they’re 20 to get them maximum growth and game time. Just make sure that when you get a loan offer, click stall and check out the team in the transfer screen. If your loanee will be the best in the team (or top 2 if he’s a CB, CM, striker, etc) then accept; if not, reject it and try again.

  38. I know there have been similar questions, but I just wanted to know because I can’t seem to see it exactly here: If I have a RW and only play with RMs, I’d like him to learn that position. While I can play him there and improve his stats in that way, will he ever develop the second position so that he actually is shown as RM/RW instead of just RW? I remembr older games allowing players to learn new positions, don’t understand why it doesn’t seem to be in FIFA 12. Any idea?

    Great blog, thanks for all the tips!

    • Nope, their listed positions never change. But I just ignore it anyway – you often find mispositioned players (strikers listed as wingers, for example), so the best way to work out where a player will be best is to look at their stats.

      As for stat development, I’m not really sure. E.g. if you played a centre back as a striker for ages, would his finishing drastically improve? I don’t know either way about this, so I think the best thing to do is just play him where you think he’ll do best. He won’t ever “gain” a position, but his stats may improve accordingly.

    • Are you playing pre-patch? Loan spells were notoriously useless before they released the patch. The best tip I have (whether or not you’re playing pre-patch) is this: when you get an offer, click stall and go to the transfer window. Look up that team and, say, defenders (if you want to loan out a defender, of course). If your potential loanee will be the best one on the team (or top 2 if he’s a CB, for example), then accept the offer. If not, refuse it. This way you ensure your players get maximum game time whilst on loan.

      As an additional precaution, I always save after every game in the transfer window. Then if I don’t get any good offers by the next game, I reload and try again. You don’t have much time in the transfer window, so if you have lots of players up for loan you want to make sure as many of them get loaned as possible. If requires a lot of patience so don’t feel obliged to do it, but I find it helps.

  39. For all those wanting to sign youth players I only ever offer people two year contracts and have always got the players I want. Offer them two years then offer them one but with a slightly higher wage. Youth players don’t want to be tied to a team if they have a high ootential

    • That’s interesting, I usually give them as long a contract as I can so teams have to pay lots of money if they want to buy the players off me 😛 Do they usually accept it if you only offer them a one year contract, even if it has a higher wage?

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