Charged with controlling the game from the centre of the pitch, the central midfielder (MC) role is pivotal for winning games.
Striking a balance between offence and defence can be a troublesome task for a manager when searching for a winning combination in the middle of the park, which is why we’re looking at the best cental midfielders boasting the highest current ability (CA) in FM22.
Choosing the best central midfielders on FM22
This page features only the best central midfielders dominating the footballing world, with household names Casemiro, Kevin De Bruyne, and Paul Pogba among the elite in FM22.
To find only the best midfielders, the players in this list had to have a minimum of 159 CA and a positional rating of at least 19 in central midfield, with the top seven featuring on the page.
At the foot of the page, you’ll find a full list of all of the best central midfielders (MC) in FM22.
1. Kevin De Bruyne (188 CA / 188 PA)
Team: Manchester City
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 188 CA / 188 PA
Value: £214 million
Best Positions: AMC, MC
Best Attributes: 20 Vision, 19 Crossing, 18 Passing
The creative genius Kevin De Bruyne claims the top spot in FM22, featuring an exceptional 188 CA and 188 PA.
De Bruyne’s vision is unrivalled in FM22. Boasting 20 vision, 19 crossing, and 18 passing, the Belgian playmaker creates endlessly for his side. Adding to his impressive retinue is his 17 free-kick taking, 18 technique, and 16 long shots – making him extremely potent from set-pieces.
Winning a double of the Premier League and League Cup for Manchester City last season, De Bruyne once again proved why he’s one of the world’s best in midfield, setting up 18 goals and scoring ten himself in the 40 games that he played.
2. Luka Modrić (171 CA / 180 PA)
Team: Real Madrid
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 171 CA / 180 PA
Wage: £275,000 p/w
Value: £6 million
Best Positions: MC
Best Attributes: 19 First Touch, 19 Passing, 19 Vision
Weighing in with a 171 CA and 180 PA is veteran midfielder Luka Modrić, still ranking as a world-class player despite his age.
The classy deep-lying playmaker is one of the best on the ball. Modrić’s 19 first touch, 17 dribbling, and 18 technique allow him to create acres of space to utilise his 19 passing and 19 vision. Modrić can read the game in a way that most can’t comprehend, with his 17 anticipation, 18 decisions, and 18 composure making him one of the most intelligent players in FM22.
The only player to be able to break the dominance held by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo over the Ballon d’Or with his 2018 win, Modrić continues to show his class. Last season, he provided six goals and six assists throughout his 48-game campaign for Real Madrid.
3. Bernardo Silva (170 CA / 180 PA)
Team: Manchester City
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 170 CA / 180 PA
Wage: £150,000 p/w
Value: £126 million
Best Positions: AM (RC), M (RC)
Best Attributes: 20 Work Rate, 19 Agility, 18 Technique
Another player in Manchester City’s stacked midfield is Bernardo Silva. With a 170 CA and 180 PA, he can also play further forward – providing some versatility and cover to your midfield.
His most eye-catching attribute is his 20 work rate, making him a tenacious player on the pitch. Pairing his innate work ethic with his brilliant 18 technique and 17 flair give Silva a fantastic edge going forward. Alongside his amazing technical skill, he has 16 passing, 17 vision, and 16 off the ball to not only find great areas to attack from, but also find his teammates.
Manchester City’s dynamic midfielder joined the Premier League champions from the French side AS Monaco after he wowed audiences with a series of stunning performances during the 2016/17 season. Winning both the Premier League and League Cup last season, Silva played in 45 games, scoring five and assisting nine more.
4. Toni Kroos (169 CA / 176 PA)
Team: Real Madrid
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 169 CA / 176 PA
Wage: £307,000 p/w
Value: £300 million
Best Positions: DM, MC
Best Attributes: 20 Passing, 19 Corners, 18 Vision
Partner to Luka Modrić in Real Madrid’s ageing midfield, Toni Kroos is another player still operating at a world-class level, as shown by his 169 CA and 176 PA in FM22.
A master of the pass, Kroos’ 20 passing is the tip of the iceberg for his outstanding ability, with him also possessing 18 vision, 18 crossing, and 19 corners. If he finds himself in space, he can unleash a lethal strike with his 17 long shots, punishing unsuspecting opponents.
After four excellent seasons in Bavaria, he was snapped up by his current club Real Madrid for £22.5 million. The 2014 World Cup winner has been top-class during his time in Spain and last season followed the trend, with Kroos grabbing three goals and 12 assists in 42 games.
5. Paul Pogba (168 CA / 176 PA)
Team: Manchester United
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 168 CA / 176 PA
Wage: £290,000 p/w
Value £64 million
Best Positions: MC
Best Attributes: 19 Technique, 18 Passing, 18 First Touch
French superstar Paul Pogba ranks among the elite midfielders of FM22 thanks to his 168 CA and 176 PA.
Pogba’s athletic prowess consists of brilliant 18 stamina, 18 balance, 17 strength, and 17 natural fitness attributes, making him an incredibly awkward player to attempt to handle. Combined with his athletic ability are his 19 technique, 18 first touch, and 18 flair, bringing class and finesse to his game.
After he enjoyed four good seasons in Italy in Juventus, proving his talent to the world, the prodigal son returned to Manchester United in a deal worth £94.5 million. In a season that saw Manchester United finish as Premier League runners-up, Pogba was a mainstay in the midfield, playing 42 games, providing six goals and ten assists.
6. Casemiro (167 CA / 170 PA)
Team: Real Madrid
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 167 CA / 170 PA
Wage: £184,000 p/w
Value: £80 million
Best Positions: DM, MC
Best Attributes: 19 Work Rate, 19 Stamina, 18 Aggression
Casemiro ranks as the sixth-best in the middle of the park; he’s playing in his prime years and is armed with 167 CA and 170 PA.
Specialising as a ball-winning midfielder, Casemiro’s incredible 19 work rate, 19 stamina, and 17 strength give him a great edge, with his 15 tackling and 17 positioning making dispossessing players easy. His 16 bravery and 18 aggression ratings make him a warrior on the field, but diving into tackles could end up with a collection of yellow cards should your tactics encourage it.
Part of Real Madrid’s star-studded line-up, the Brazilian battler joined the club from his boyhood side, São Paulo, for a bargain £5.4 million. Last season, the defensive midfielder was a mainstay for his side, playing 46 games to chip in with seven goals and six assists.
7. Leon Goretzka (165 CA / 170 PA)
Team: Bayern Munich
Current Ability / Potential Ability: 165 CA / 170 PA
Wage: £197,000 p/w
Value: £69 million
Best Positions: DM, AMC, MC
Best Attributes: 18 Work Rate, 18 Stamina, 18 Strength
Powerhouse Leon Goretzka’s 165 CA and 170 PA put him among the best central midfielders in FM22; at only 26-years-old, he has plenty of time to become the very best in the game.
The tireless German has a brilliant engine, with his 18 stamina, 18 strength, and 18 work rate enabling him to constantly work up and down the pitch, bullying players off of the ball. A well-rounded player with the ability to cover defence and attack, his 15 tackling, 15 passing, and 15 long shots give him the ability to adapt to any situation.
Goretzka began his career with VFL Bochum. Developing in their academy, his exploits caught the attention of Schalke 04, signing for them in 2013. He continued to make a name for himself as a classy combative midfielder until Bayern Munich came calling in 2018. Last season, he picked up eight goals and eight assists from his 32 games, despite missing 14 matches due to injury.
All the best central midfielders (MC) on FM22
Below you can find a full list of all of the best central midfielders (MC) in FM22, sorted by their current ability (CA) ratings.
|Kevin De Bruyne||188||188||30||AMC, MC||Manchester City||£250,000||£214 million|
|Luka Modrić||171||180||35||MC||Real Madrid||£275,000||£6 million|
|Bernardo Silva||170||180||26||AM (RC), M (RC)||Manchester City||£150,000||£126 million|
|Toni Kroos||169||176||31||DM, MC||Real Madrid||£307,000||£300 million|
|Paul Pogba||168||176||28||MC||Manchester United||£290,000||£64 million|
|Casemiro||167||170||29||DM, MC||Real Madrid||£184,000||£80 million|
|Leon Goretzka||165||170||26||DM, AMC, MC||Bayern Munich||£197,000||£69 million|
|N’Golo Kanté||165||165||30||DM, MC||Chelsea||£290,000||£89 million|
|Sergej Milinković-Savić||164||170||26||AMC, MC||Lazio||£97,000||£62 million|
|Thiago||164||173||30||DM, AMC, MC||Liverpool||£225,000||£75 million|
|Frenkie de Jong||164||183||24||DC, DM, MC||Barcelona||£164,000||£121 million|
|Fernandinho||164||165||36||DC, DM, MC||Manchester City||£180,000||£6 million|
|Koke||163||166||29||M (RLC)||Atlético Madrid||£262,000||£67 million|
|Nicolò Barella||163||173||24||MC||Inter Milan||£76,000||£68 million|
|Marcos Llorente||161||163||26||WBR, DM, AMC, M (RC)||Atlético Madrid||£85,000||£72 million|
|Ilkay Gündogan||161||167||30||DM, AMC, MC||Manchester City||£150,000||£72 million|
|Luis Alberto||160||163||28||AMC, MC||Lazio||£76,000||£51 million|
|Federico Valverde||160||168||22||DM, MC||Real Madrid||£65,000||£72 million|
|Marcelo Brozović||160||161||28||DM, MC||Inter Milan||£106,000||£39 million|
|Marco Verratti||159||164||28||MC||Paris Saint-Germain||£236,000||£55 million|
|Jordan Henderson||159||159||31||DM, MC||Liverpool||£190,000||£50 million|
|Miralem Pjanić||159||169||31||DM, CM||Barcelona (on-loan at Beşiktaş)||£106,000||£55 million|
Looking for your next world-class central midfielder? You’ll find the most elite CMs of Football Manager 2022 in the table above.