After not qualifying for the 2018 World Cup, Italy will be looking to return to international football glory in the coming years.
The four-time champions will seek to avenge their disappointing attempt to even reach the World Cup in 2018 with a strong cup run in Qatar 2022. However, the players that feature on this list may be looking beyond 2022 as they try to establish themselves down the line.
This article contains young Italian players on FIFA 21 who will take your Career Mode to the next level in the years to come. Their overall may not wow you but their potential definitely will.
Choosing FIFA 21 Career Mode’s Best Italian Wonderkids
Every player in this article has been sorted by their potential as that is the key attribute when looking at wonderkids.
For the players to appear on this list they must be aged 21 or under and have at least 80 Potential, with some players having potential considerably higher.
We begin with a more detailed glance into the top Italian wonderkids before looking at all the players who fit the criteria in a table at the foot of the article.
Gianluigi Donnarumma (OVR 85 – POT 92)
Best Position: GK
Overall/Potential: 85 OVR / 92 POT
Weak Foot: 3
Best Attributes: 89 Goalkeeper Diving, 89 Goalkeeper Reflexes, 83 Goalkeeper Positioning
Milan seem to have their goalkeeper locked in for the next 20 years. At only 21 years of age, Donnarumma has shown he is capable of playing in Serie A having already notched up 209 appearances, and should he continue at this rate he will break Buffon’s Serie A record of 648 appearances.
Though established as Milan’s number one goalkeeper, Donnarumma has followed tradition of other Serie A players by taking the number which matches the year of their birth. This is why he wears number 99.
Donnarumma’s goalkeeping stats are strong across the board. His 89 Diving, 89 Goalkeeper Reflexes and 83 Goalkeeper Positioning coupled with his 81 Goalkeeper Handling make him a top-class keeper.
The only real opportunity for Donnarumma to improve is his 76 Goalkeeper Kicking rating. However, if you were to prioritize throwing and passing from the keeper you may not even notice it.
Sandro Tonali (OVR 77 – POT 91)
Best Position: CDM, CM
Overall/Potential: 77 OVR / 91 POT
Skill Moves: 3
Best Attributes: 83 Acceleration, 82 Short Passing, 81 Long Passing
Throughout Tonali’s brief career he has been compared to Andrea Pirlo, and if he lives up to his potential, those comparisons will not stop anytime soon. He is currently on loan at Milan from Brescia where he played his youth football.
With 91 Potential, his abilities in the short-term are an added bonus to the long-term impact he will have on your team. A player with 82 Short Passing and 81 Long Passing can spray passes from the midfield to either keep possession or to open up the defence.
Tonali’s 83 Acceleration provides him with a burst of pace and with 79 Strength, 79 Ball Control and 78 Vision he can keep the ball and distribute it as needed.
Luca Pellegrini (OVR 72 – POT 86)
Best Position: LB
Overall/Potential: 72 OVR / 86 POT
Skill Moves: 2
Best Attributes: 78 Crossing, 78 Acceleration, 75 Sprint Speed
Pellegrini began his career at Roma before spending time with Cagliari, Genoa – who he currently plays for – and Juventus, who he is set to join next summer.
Last season for Cagliari, Pellegrini popped up with 6 assists from 24 games after playing 12 games the season prior. He will be looking to establish his place in the Genoa team in the coming season and show Juventus what he is capable of.
Pellegrini’s 78 Crossing Ability at 21 bodes well for his ability to put the ball in the box in the future. Not blessed with blistering pace, his 78 Acceleration and 75 Sprint Speed aren’t anything to write home about but set a decent foundation for a strong full back.
His other notable stats are his 72 Ball Control and 72 Standing Tackle, though on the other end of the spectrum, his 49 Strength may be worth noting.
Sebastiano Esposito (OVR 66 – POT 86)
Best Position: ST
Overall/Potential: 66 OVR / 86 POT
Skill Moves: 3
Best Attributes: 75 Curve, 74 Free Kick Accuracy, 71 Acceleration
Only 17 years old, Esposito’s career has really yet to begin. He has shown potential at under 17 level scoring 16 goals in 14 games a couple of seasons ago but since then hasn’t played consistently enough to show anything more.
Playing on loan at S.P.A.L this season in the second tier of Italian football, Esposito will hope to establish his place in the team and score goals.
Being 17, Esposito has his whole career ahead of him and his 75 Curve and 74 Free Kick Accuracy are signs of good things to come. Though he only has 67 Finishing and 65 Positioning, he does carry the traits of Finesse Shot and Outside Foot Shot.
With 71 Acceleration, 67 Sprint Speed and 57 Stamina, he may be a player who is brought on from the bench until he builds on those statistics.
Nicolò Zaniolo (OVR 76 – POT 86)
Team: AS Roma
Best Position: CAM, RM
Overall/Potential: 76 OVR / 86 POT
Skill Moves: 3
Best Attributes: 80 Aggression, 79 Shot Power, 78 Short Passing
After impressing in the Youth League Primavera 1 for Inter, Roma liked what they saw in Zaniolo and snapped up the then 18-year-old for just over £4m. Since then, Zaniolo has player 25+ games in each of the two seasons in the capital and has shown his worth.
Central attacking midfielders are usually under 6’0” and quick on the turn. Standing at 6’3”, Zaniolo is an anomaly in terms of height but doesn’t lack the nimble nature with 71 Agility, 78 Balance and 78 Reactions.
He other stats are a sea of green – 78 Dribbling, 78 Ball Control to go along with 77 Positioning and 76 Vision are all not far from the 80 rating threshold for dark green.
All the best young Italian players in FIFA 21
Below is a table with all the best young Italian players who fit the criteria of 21 and under and have a minimum potential of 80.
|Sandro Tonali||CDM CM||20||77||91||Milan||£16.7M||£22K|
|Nicolò Zaniolo||CAM RM||20||76||86||Roma||£11.3M||£450|
|Eddy Salcedo||CF ST||18||67||83||Hellas Verona||£1.4M||£3K|
|Enrico Brignola||CAM RW CF||20||68||82||SPAL||£1.8M||£9K|
|Davide Frattesi||CM CAM||20||69||81||AC Monza||£1.7M||£2K|
|Samuele Ricci||CM CDM||18||62||80||Empoli||£563K||£450|
|Davide Bettella||CB||20||63||80||AC Monza||£675K||£675|
|Matteo Lovato||CB||20||67||80||Hellas Verona||£1.3M||£5K|