One of the opening promotions every FIFA is the inclusions of OTW’s and with plenty of high-profile transfers occurring already, there are plenty of names for EA to choose from. I would still expect most of the cards to go to the big clubs but with the business being done around the world we are still set to see the best set of players we have ever seen from an OTW promotion*.
*The OTW Predictions will get updated as new transfers gets announced during August
Matthijs De Ligt, CB, 85 overall rating, Bayern MunichMunich have splashed the cash after a big sale of Lewandowski but instead of going all in for a striker they have instead improved in several areas and you could argue that their squad looks better heading into a new season than it has done for a long time, despite losing their biggest threat. De Ligt, who you have to remember is still only 21 years of age made the move from Juventus to Munich after a couple of up and down seasons since moving from Ajax and should he hit the ground running for the German champions I would fully expect him to develop into one of the best CB’s in the world. I don’t think his rating will move from last season and thus expect him to enter at 85.
Jules Kounde, CB, 84 overall rating, BarcelonaThe first of three Barcelona options to make my prediction is Kounde, this does mean that I have opted against Raphinha but that is down to the number of high-profile wingers making switches this summer. Considering the financial issues that Barcelona are currently facing it's bizarre to see just how many big transfers they are making which is only enhanced with news of them asking players to terminate contracts or take pay cuts consistently coming out. How it will play out with FFP is still to be seen but one thing is for sure and that’s how much quality Barcelona now have within their squad. With a TOTY nomination and a TOTS inclusion for Kounde during FIFA 22 I would expect a good increase to come alongside his transfer.
Antonio Rudiger, CB, 86 overall rating, Real MadridWhen you consider that Real Madrid managed to lure Rudiger away from Chelsea on a free transfer you can argue that this was the move of the summer. Rudiger was phenomenal last season for Chelsea and that will show when EA increase his rating quite significantly. I have opted for a plus 3 but even a plus 4, making him 87 wouldn’t surprise me too much. Real Madrid has not been messing about in the summer making several high-profile transfers to build on their double winning squad of 2021/22. Rudiger is not the only Madrid player in this prediction.
Kalidou Koulibaly, CB, 86 overall rating, ChelseaSince making the move to Napoli way back in 2014 Koulibaly has managed to build quite the reputation for himself and although he has never managed to reach the very top of the game, he has been a well-known name across world football with consistently good displays during his time with the Italian outlet and internationally with Senegal. Although he is now approaching the final years of his career a lot will still be expected of him in a Chelsea shirt, especially now it is known that he will be the first player to wear the number 26 since John Terry’s retirement.
Sadio Mane, LW, 89 overall rating, Bayern MunichThe first of three players you will have already seen predicting ratings for via the top 20 article released earlier in the week, is Sadio Mane. Liverpool fans know just how much of a loss this is and Munich will be rubbing their hands together after securing the Senegalese winger for such a reasonable price. Pre-season suggests that Mane has gelled in well with the side and it should be an exciting campaign for him.
Franck Kessie, CM, 85 overall rating, BarcelonaAfter a successful time in the Serie A, Kessie has opted for a new challenge, making the move over to Spain to play for Barcelona. A move to a side like Barcelona comes with great hype and thus I expect a small upgrade to what otherwise would have been a stick for me. There are a lot of Barcelona options for the OTW players and thus one or two will miss out. Kessie could easily be one of those but with limited central midfielders, I feel that he will sneak in.
Aurelien Tchouameni, CM, 82 overall rating, Real MadridTchouameni quickly became a popular option in FUT last season with several special items early in the game and a simply ridiculous TOTS item to come later on. The Frenchman is not just a FUT option though and is one of the brightest talents in the game, especially away from the forwards side of things. Real Madrid snapped him up early in the transfer window, paying out 54 million for him. Which could prove to be brilliant business with Tchouameni being just 22 years of age. A predicted rating of 82 may be slightly harsh but it is still a plus three of last season and should he perform to the same level with Madrid I am sure he will get a similar upgrade again for the following season.
Raheem Sterling, LW, 87 overall rating, ChelseaSterling has slowly fallen out of favour within the Manchester City side and with the arrival of Grealish alongside the upcoming Foden Chelsea was able to pounce and it is a transfer I feel that Chelsea has done superbly. Sterling is a world class player of his day and will bring a lot to any club. With him presumably playing the vast majority of matches it wouldn’t surprise me to see him reach the heights he was previously at. That being said I can still see a slight decrease in rating heading into the new game.
Paulo Dybala, CF, 86 overall rating, RomaOut of the top five leagues, Serie A has by far been the quietest in terms of high-profile transfers but one which does catch the eye is the transfer of Dybala to Roma from Juventus. Dybala never really lived up to the initial expectations he had as a youngster and now moves on a free transfer. It’s a gamble from Roma with his high wage packet but it’s one that they were never going to turn down with the Argentine being proven in the division and still has many years in him at just 28 years of age. I do expect a small downgrade to come his way with the 87 he was at last year being a difficult one to maintain.
Erling Haaland, ST, 90 overall rating, Manchester CityThe first of two big name strikers to feature in this side is of course Erling Haaland. All eyes will be on the youngster after a simply phenomenal record at Dortmund. The main issue will be his injury record but should his body hold up, he should be the missing link to an already deadly City side, who have missed a striker for a couple of seasons now with Aguero struggling for fitness on a regular basis. I doubt that he will win the golden boot this year but should he start at least 80% of games I am sure that he will be in the running for it.
Lewandowski, ST, 92 overall rating, BarcelonaLewandowski needs no introduction and with the likes of Messi and Ronaldo featuring as OTW’s the past couple of seasons, it is obvious that Lewandowski will be one of the OTW’s to feature with the Polish international being an easy player to promote the side with. It is difficult to say just how well Lewandowski will do for Barcelona but since he is a proven goal scorer and has been among the best strikers in the world for many years now, I am sure that he will score plenty in a strong Barcelona side.
Jonathan Clauss, RWB, 80 overall rating, MarseilleAfter a couple of strong seasons, especially offensively for Lens, Clauss has become somewhat of a FIFA favourite. With strong links and incredibly good base stats meaning he is a regular in those French league sides. This will likely work in his favour when it comes to obtaining an OTW item with Clauss now being a name people will get excited about. His performances, in general, have deserved a transfer to one of the more established Ligue 1 sides though, with it being Marseille who have decided to purchase the Frenchman
David Raum, LWB, 79 overall rating, LeipzigRaum seriously made a name for himself in Germany last season, where he started the game as a 73 rated silver before developing into one of the most impressive players in the division, especially when it came to defenders. His constant threat down the left-hand flank resulted in numerous attacking contributions and his performances didn’t go unnoticed. Leipzig was the side to pick him up and should he continue his form where he left off last season, I would expect at least three IF’s to come from the LWB.
Renato Sanches, CM, 80 overall rating, PSGIt seems a long time ago that Sanches somewhat flopped after signing for Bayern Munich but since then he has developed into a strong midfielder in Ligue 1 for Lille and although not at the heights once expected of him the move to PSG shows just how far he has come since that disappointment a few years ago. There are not many Ligue 1 options for the OTW promo and thus Sanches is the arguably best one from the division, especially with the FIFA hype he obtains.
Ryan Gravenberch, CM, 81 overall rating, Bayern MunichYet another young talent that Bayern Munich splashed out on over the summer was Gravenberch from Ajax, who will link up with fellow new Dutch signing De Ligt. Should both feature, which is a good probability then I would expect to see the combo used a lot early in the game especially. It is hard to say what the limit is on how far Gravenberch will go but should he manage to keep a spot in the Munich team I would expect him to be close to the very top in a few years' time. For now, I have gone for a modest plus three as he is still young and yet to play in an elite division.
Gareth Bale, RW, 81 overall rating, LAFCSince making the move to Madrid back to 2013 his career has gradually declined with off the field antics and minimal playing time hurting his footballing career. Despite that his talent has always been clear to see and after securing a move to a lower quality league in the MLS the Welshman seems to be having a lot of fun with his quality really shining through, creating highlight reel after highlight reel moments. I would expect yet another downgrade for him, albeit a small one but at the same time, you would fully expect several IF’s to come his way and thus his OTW card could end up being a fun one. There are only really a few OTW’s outside of the main five leagues but Bale should be one of the exceptions.
Angel Di Maria, RW, 85 overall rating, juventusWith the addition of Messi to PSG’s squad last season it was always going to be difficult for ADM to maintain a first team spot with the talent within the Paris side. So the transfer of ADM away from the capital was not really a surprise, especially with the Argentine now 34 years old and statistically declining. As with most players reaching the end of their career, I do expect the ratings to start plummeting for ADM and thus a –2 is what I expect to happen for him, which is still a very respectable rating. It will be interesting to see how he gets on at Juventus and I fully expect him to receive an OTW.
Karim Adeyemi, ST, 78 overall rating, Dortmund
Dortmund has signed a couple of strikers this summer with both Adeyemi and Haller joining the club. There are arguments for both players to receive an OTW card but I feel as though Adeyemi is the more likely of the two. The young German was one of the brightest talents outside of the top leagues last season, playing his trade for Salzburg. A club that regularly sees players break through from their setup. He was only a silver last year but a decent upgrade should be on the way to start him off as a lower end gold card.
Darwin Nunez, ST, 83 overall rating, Liverpool
One thing for sure Darwin Nunez will be much higher rated than he was last season, which was a modest 76 but I do not want to go too crazy with the rating just yet, despite the high profile move to Liverpool. His statistics in the Portuguese league were phenomenal however the quality of the division and the fact it was just one season does limit how high I feel EA will go and thus although it may rustle a few feathers I am expecting the 83 range. There are a lot of striker options for OTW’s, especially in the Premier League but after such a big transfer fee I would be shocked if Nunez fails to make one of the sides.
Gabriel Jesus, ST, 83 overall rating, Arsenal
With the Brazilian receiving limited minutes for City last season, I can’t see much happening in terms of his rating but there should be some hype around a potential OTW card if his pre-season form is anything to go by. With seven goals to his name, he is the most IF striker in the Premier League when it comes to friendlies. I can him continuing this run of form into the new season too as when he did play for City he also posed somewhat of a threat and with Arsenal giving him his preferred striker role I would expect to see at least 15 goals from the Brazilian during his debut season for the Gunners.
Casemiro, CDM, 89 overall rating, Manchester United
It comes as no surprise that I have opted for Casemiro to stay as an 89 rated midfielder having featured in both La Liga and top 20 prediction articles already however, having now officially joined Manchester United from Real Madrid, he enters the OTW too. You can argue that this was a panic buy from United with the price tag being extortionate for a 30 year old but what United now have is exactly what they have lacked for multiple seasons now and with international performances alongside Fred already excelling for Brazil, there are multiple positives for the transfer too.