FIFA 23 Best Young CDMs: Italian powerhouse tops the list of defensive midfielders


Your FIFA 23 career mode save won't be successful if you don't have a solid base to your midfield. That means you need to grab some of these young CDMs right away!

The CDM, or central defensive midfield, position is crucial to how modern teams play. They need to be good on the ball, able to distribute from the back to beat a press and to recycle possession in the final third. But they are also required to be ball-winners when out of possession, closing down creative threats, putting in tackles, and disrupting passes.

With EA Sports FC just around the corner and another transfer window looming, this may be your last chance to sign some of the best young CDMs in FIFA 23 before their big money moves!

All ratings correct as of 24 April, 2023

FIFA 23 best young CDMs for Career Mode

What makes someone eligible for this list? Well, firstly they have to primarily play CDM. There are a lot of players who fit naturally into the CM or CDM position, and we will consider all of them so long as they are equally as good at CDM as they are at CM.

The second part is age. We are only looking at players that start FIFA 23 career mode aged between 20 and 24. Those younger than that fall into the wonderkid CDMs bracket, while obviously anyone older than that has aged out!

Declan Rice in FIFA 23
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CLUB LEGEND - Declan Rice is aleady West Ham captain

There are a lot of quality CDMs in the football world right now, which means that you won't need to be at a massive club to try and sign some of them. While a few have just made their big transfer, others are still waiting to be snapped up by big clubs.

We've listed these by considerating what they can do right now but also how high their potential is. You might disagree with our list, but this is who we think are the best young CDMs in FIFA 23 career mode!

Sandro Tonali (OVR 84 - POT 88)

Team: AC Milan

Age: 22

Nation: Italy

Sandro Tonali is one of those players that has always been good. He made his professional debut with Brescia in Serie B at the age of 17 and was already too good for that level. It didn't take long for AC Milan to come calling, and they grabbed him on a loan-to-buy deal in September 2020 after Tonali won promotion with Brescia and proved himself more than capable in Serie A.

Sandro Tonali in FIFA 23
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MAESTRO - Tonali can boss your midfield

In FIFA 23, Tonali is an excellent CDM. Defensively sound, offensively capable, and with the athleticism to get up and down the pitch, Tonali will fit into any team. He's got 85 stamina, 84 short passing, 84 aggression, 83 ball control, 83 sprint speed, and 81 standing tackle to basically do everything in the middle of the park.

Declan Rice (OVR 84 - POT 87)

Team: West Ham

Age: 23

Nation: England

Like Tonali, Rice was long-touted for stardom, but he is yet to get his move to an elite club. Having come through West Ham's academy to captain the side and be a key part of the England team at just 23. This might be the last time you can grab Rice, as he's been linked with a move to Arsenal this summer.

In FIFA 23 Rice is more of a defensive player than Tonali, with 85 interceptions, 84 standing tackle, and 82 defensive awareness highlighting his ability to win the ball back. However he can still pick a pass and get about. His 90 stamina will keep him going all game, and with 84 long passing and 83 short passing he can create up the field too.

Aurelien Tchouameni (OVR 83 - POT 89)

Team: Real Madrid

Age: 22

Nation: France

Tchouameni is one of a number of young players that Real Madrid has been gobbling up recently. He joined the Spanish giants from Monaco in June 2022 and has immediately bedded into the highly talented midfield group there.

Aurelien Tchouameni in FIFA 23
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STAR TURN - Tchouameni is already great for both club and country

In FIFA 23 Tchouameni isn't quite as good as Tonali or Rice yet, but his potential is higher. He's got 84 short passing, 84 interceptions, 83 stamina, 83 long passing, and 81 strength to be really productive both in possession and out of possession.

Of course, being at Real Madrid he might not be available immediately, but a loan move isn't off the cards.

Bruno Guimaraes (OVR 83 - POT 87)

Team: Newcastle

Age: 24

Nation: Brazil

Perhaps the biggest signing of Newcastle's new era, Bruno Guimaraes has quickly become a fan favourite and one of their most important players.

Guimaraes is best deployed as a deep ball-mover, with his 85 short passing, 85 long passing, 85 ball control, and 84 dribbling all highlighting just how good he is in possession. However, he can get stuck in too. His 86 stamina, 83 standing tackle, and 83 interceptions mean that he'll win the ball back too.

Ismael Bennacer (OVR 83 - POT 87)

Team: AC Milan

Age: 24

Nation: Algeria

The AC Milan midfield is stacked with both Tonali and Bennacer. Like his teammate, Bennacer made his name in Serie B, winning promotion with Empoli before getting a big move to Milan in 2019.

Ismael Bennacer in FIFA 23
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ON THE MOVE - Bennacer would be a great signing for any team

Another do-it-all midfielder, Bennacer has 89 balance, 87 agility, 86 dribbling, and 85 short passing to really get about and cause problems on the ball. Without it, his 86 aggression, 82 standing tackle, and 81 interceptions will help you win it back. He can also cover at fullback very effectively, which is a nice little bonus!

More FIFA 23 best young CDMs

Player
Team
Age
OVR
POT
Manuel Locatelli
Juventus (Loan)
24
83
86
Enzo Fernandez
Chelsea
21
81
88
Ibrahim Sangare
PSV
24
81
86
Xaver Schlager
RB Leipzig
24
81
84
Rosival Jailson
Corinthians
22
81
81
Boubacar Kamara
Aston Villa
22
80
86
Exequiel Palacios
Bayer Leverkusen
23
80
85
Youssouf Fofana
Monaco
23
80
84
Teun Koopmeiners
Atalanta
24
80
84
Manuel Ugarte
Sporting
21
79
85

Even more best young players

Looking for young talent at other positions? We've got you covered. Check out our pieces below and you can build a whole squad of talented players with a long future ahead of them.

For more articles like this, take a look at our FIFA page.