With FM23 now with us, it is time to round up the best mezzalas you can get early on in the game.
They will not come cheap, however, with some good timing and some luck, you might manage to snag one or two of them towards the end of their current contracts when payers in the game are normally considerably cheaper.
Without further ado, here are the best mezzalas you can sign in FM23 at the start of the save;
- Phil Foden
- Bernardo Silva
- Bruno Fernandes
- Jude Bellingham
- Kevin de Bruyne
- Sergej Milinkovic Savic
- Nicolo Barella
- Federico Valverde
I have deliberately avoided naming players who are closer to the age of 30, but there are a few such as Kevin de Bruyne who you just can’t keep out of this list
I have done this to ensure you get maximum service out of these players I’ve settled upon, or a nice transfer fee should one of the bigger clubs come after them.
1. Phil Foden
Still only 22 years old, Foden has already cemented his place in Pep’s starting eleven.
The only problem is that he is deployed out wide rather than in the central areas where he has been groomed to play in since he broke through from City’s academy.
Foden’s talent is undeniable, and he still displays excellent performances out wide. However, should you manage to pry him away from Manchester City, Foden has the hallmarks of an unstoppable mezzala.
Quick of feet and an eye for goal, he will inevitably chip in with goals and assists from the central areas of the pitch.
Aside from the mezzala role, Foden can also be used in other areas including a false 9 role and an advanced playmaker in the attacking midfield position or out wide similar to how Pep uses him.
2. Bernardo Silva
Bernardo Silva is one of the reasons Foden has not yet been operating in central midfield for Manchester City.
Brought in as a winger from AS Monaco, Bernardo has shown his versatility by dropping world-class performances in central midfield, filling in the space vacated by David Silva when his time at the Etihad came to an end.
He will demand a lot in terms of wages, but you are guaranteed quality from the little magician.
Fresh from winning the Kopa Trophy, Gavi is already a key figure in Barcelona’s central midfield.
He can play a number of roles in central midfield, a testament to his quality and versatility. More suited to play as a box to box midfielder or a mezzala, Gavi can still comfortably play as a left winger should you wish to deploy him out wide.
He has a high market value in FM23, but if you want the best, especially at such a young age, you must be prepared to pay up the big bucks.
Pedri is another great talent at Barcelona. He is a very similar play to Gavi, and even plays the same roles with equal capability.
The two have been central to Frenkie de Jong feeling out of place at Camp Nou, with Barcelona’s hierarchy seemingly happy to see the Dutchman leave the club with the knowledge that Gavi and Pedri are more than capable replacements.
At only 20 years old, he will cost an arm and a leg, but he’s definitely worth the money you will be required to pay for his services.
5. Bruno Fernandes
Normally deployed as an attacking midfielder at Man United, Bruno Fernandes is still capable of playing slightly further back as an advanced playmaker in central midfield or as a mezzala.
His work rate is second to none, and as long as you have a solid number 6 to cover for some of his defensive frailties, Fernandes will reward your faith in him with guaranteed goals and assists.
He will obviously cost a ton in both wages and transfer fees to buy him from Manchester United, but at only 27, he still has at least 5 years of service in him before he starts slowing down.
6. Jude Bellingham
At only 19 years old, Jude Bellingham is already one of the best mezzalas you can get in the game.
The only downside is that he will cost a fortune in both wages and transfer fees. Be prepared to fight it out among the likes of Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United as they will waste no time in moving in for him.
Should you beat them to his signature, Bellingham offers excellent physical and technical attributes and he will only get better. He can also play as an advanced playmaker, a deep lying playmaker and a box to box midfielder.
7. Kevin De Bruyne
Kevin De Bruyne needs no introduction, Arguably the most important player in Pep’s midfield, De Bruyne is as good as it gets when you want a central midfield player that will routinely break forward chipping in with goals and assists.
He is however past the 30 years old barrier, but with his ability, it is unlikely that he will slow down anytime soon.
Being a key player at Manchester City, the efforts and money you will use signing him could be better off being spent bringing in wonder kids who will be stars in the future. I have a guide on setting up your scouting assignments to unearth these hidden gems.
8. Sergej Milinković-Savić
Perennially linked with a move to the English Premier League, Savic is a highly talented mezzala who can also play other different roles, including that of a target man in the dying minutes of a match that you are chasing.
He is incredibly physical, with the technical skills to match his physicality making him a candidate for various other roles in FM23 including box to box midfielder and advanced playmaker.
Playing in Serie A, Savic will still cost a lot, but not as much as the other names on this list. He is still only 27 years old, and has a lot to offer should you sign him up.
9. Nicolò Barella
At only 25 years old, Barella is another Serie A talent entering his prime years. The Inter Milan midfielder can play different positions in midfield, from defensive midfield to attacking midfield.
He is however at his best as either a mezzala or a box to box midfielder with the licence to join the team in attack when the opportunity arises.
In defensive midfield, you can use his high mobility and work rate as a no-nonsense ball-winning midfielder who will cover large areas of the pitch. However, this negates his attacking prowess.
As is the case with Serie A players, they will normally command reasonable transfer fees, so it is best to move in for him early before he is snatched up by the likes of Real Madrid and PSG.
10. Federico Valverde
Often deployed in the wide positions at Real Madrid, Valverde is still a highly capable attack-minded central midfield player.
With Real Madrid having an embarrassment of riches in central midfield, it might be slightly easier than normal to sign him from the Spanish club
Valverde’s high physicality and work rate make him a natural candidate for a mezzala role or a box to box midfielder should you wish.
If you are adventurous and want to try something new, you might also retrain him to operate as an attacking wingback on the right.
In conclusion, this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the best mezzalas you can get in FM23. Be sure to scout the best regions in the game, and you will be guaranteed to unearth some gems you have never heard of.