FM 2011 player profile – Tom Cairney

FM 2011 Central Midfielders

written by Darren Smith

Tom Cairney

Age – 19 years old

Position – Central midfield

Club – Hull City

Nationality – English

Value – £1.2 million

Price tag – £1.9 – 2.2 million

Media comparison – dubbed the new Jim Baxter

Tom Cairney’s starting attributes

Within a new game, I took a screenshot of Tom Cairney’s profile. This young gun already has the ability to light up any Championship side. A big bonus is the fact Tom plays for Hull City, meaning you can leave him a season or so to let the midfielder grow and play first team football. However, if you’re a small Premiership club I would recommend snapping him up straight away. The lowly price of around £2 million is worth it. Cairney can pass fairly well and has natural dribbling ability which is aided by his great balance. I think an advanced playmaker role would suit the 19 year old well, and Cairney could do well from the off with a lesser top flight club or any Championship club.

As usual, I sent Arsenal’s Cagigao out to scout Cairney. Must admit I was a little disappointed with the outcome. His report came back with one and a half stars for current ability, and just three stars for potential ability. I guess you have to remember this scouting report is based on Arsenal football club and a players standard within the club. This means Cairney would be amazing with anyone below Arsenal’s current standard. Still, £1.9 million is a bargain for him in my opinion and look at his stats in 2015!

This is a screenshot from my Ultimate European Challenge. The year is 2015 and Cairney has been with Reading for two or three years. Ignore his massive wages, I assure you he is available for around £4.5K per week when the game starts. However, do take notice of his change in attributes. This 19 year old likes the ball at his feet and seems set to make magic. Plus he’s English and it’s always nice to bring in home grown talent. My main pointer is Cairney would rot on the bench, so be sure to 0ffer plenty of game time. This will help the midfielder grow in to what you see above or even better.

Tom Cairney in real life (found on Wikipedia)

Many great players have come through the youth ranks at Leeds United, but Cairney was one they let go. After questioning his height, the then 16 year old was released from Leeds youth team. Hull City saw a spark that was missed by Cairney’s former club and signed him at the age of 17. The next two seasons saw Cairney jump from a new young gun, to a hot prospect and bench warmer. He even became Hull’s Young Player of the Year during 2008-09. Cairney has made 28 appearances for Hull and scored 2 goals. While his International career has started with Scotland’s U19’s following 2 appearances before gaining his first cap with the U21’s.

My best buy rating 7.5/10

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  • comment avatar fmcrazy February 24, 2011

    Nice one, I like him as well and is good for LLM. Good prospect, good post :)

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Thanks buddy, your right too, he can also play LM but may need to be trained in that position for best effect.

  • comment avatar plobdork February 24, 2011

    i also have a game in yr 2015 (manage england won world cup lost challenge and left for algeria :) )ill find a good youngster now and reccomend him :)

    • comment avatar plobdork February 24, 2011

      found 4
      1)dodo from corinthians now playing 4 udinese :)
      2)jay rodriguez england international playing 4 liverpool
      3)fedirico macheda just amazing man utd still
      4)lee hodson from watford now playing 4 aston villa

      hope these are gud inoof reccomendations :) :)

      • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

        Thanks Plobdork, I’ll be sure to see how they all look in my game. :)

  • comment avatar Arjuna February 24, 2011

    Hey Darren,
    You may remember that i signed Cairney in my West Brom game. He becomes a lot better than his scouting report suggests. I would actually give him a 9.5/10, as he really is a world-beater.
    I suggest that you look at
    1) Thorgan Hazard – RC Lens
    2) Lucas Digne – LOSC Lille
    3) Lucas – Sao Paulo
    4) Raphael Varane – RC Lens
    5) Fransicos Alacarce (Not sure about his name, he plays for Valencia U19’s)

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Cheers Arjuna, I remember you signing Cairney. He is quality but can go either way sometimes. If not managed well, the midfielder may not reach his potential. I’ll take a look at your recommendations. But the next profile is on an amazing player that some may or may not know. :)

  • comment avatar Timmy February 24, 2011

    Hey,thanks for the post,im struggling find Van Bommel replacement as the team ‘soul’
    and about Lucas(not piazon),many people is request him so your next post im recommend you to post Lucas :)
    This another list for you:
    Jordan Spence(West Ham,he can be great captain)
    Ricky van Wolfswinkel(FC Utrecht,cheap and good striker)
    Josip Ilicic(Palermo,have a good atribute and potential)
    Alex Smithies(cheap and top class goalkeeper)
    Matias Defederico(Corinthians,good striker,again)
    Sime Vrsaljko(Dinamo,good wingback)
    David Alaba(FC Bayern,still not sure on this player)
    Andrea Ranocchia(co-owned by Genoa and Inter,two sentence,Top Class)
    Mario Gotze(Borrusia Dortmund,get chased by Man Utd in real life)
    cherrs :)

  • comment avatar Timmy February 24, 2011

    Sorry for double post,but Cairney is touted as next Paul Gascoigne in my game,i think he will be great(maybe World Class)midfielder.Very Recommended
    Badly,Man Utd already buy him :(

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Thanks for all the suggestions Timmy, it would seem everyone has a thing for Lucas so I’ll take another look but he doesn’t seem world class in my game :( I’ll keep looking though mate.

  • comment avatar Wazz February 24, 2011

    Darren, I really like this player profile. You’re sharing us readers great players.. This guy looks great! Never mind the report, as long as he’s consistent, I will buy this guy.
    Thanks again Darren!

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Thanks Wazz, I find posting on players very easy. So these profiles don’t take long unlike my tactics articles. There’s a lot more to come :)

  • comment avatar Sears February 24, 2011

    Thanks Darren. I may look at him when my Queens Park hit the big time :-D

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      I look forward to it mate :) Certainly worth a scout anyway :)

  • comment avatar Birdy February 24, 2011

    Hey Darren
    He is a great young player that can be a play maker like Kevin also with arsenal your scouting reports are a lot lower because the scouts compare there players to Fabregas RVP and all so they would not get the rating they deserve. Try doing it with maybe Tottenham, everton or aston villa

    And nice players that are being suggested one of mine is Tomas Horava

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      I agree Birdy, the scouts reports are a bit deceiving because of the high rep players within Arsenal. I’m taking your advice and picking a side like Tottenham for the reports from now on. Lots of great suggestions and I’ll take a look at Horava…but the next profile has already been chosen. :)

  • comment avatar albyedw February 24, 2011

    great report darren,
    he is not very young but i reccomed argentinain playmaker Dario conca from fluminese,Brazil.
    check out my football and football manager blog at

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Cheers Albyedw, I’ll take a look at Conca. I’ll also pop by your site too mate. :)

  • comment avatar Sibo February 24, 2011

    Hey Darren, Serder Serderov still my reccomendation, he is very good at 18 years ols in my Grimsby game, but I want to know if he gets even better and becomes a great striker!

    Also, check out my blog:

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      I’ve looked for Serderov in both my Newcastle and UEC save mate, I can’t find him. I’ll take a look at your site later tonight :)

      • comment avatar Sibo February 25, 2011

        I have found that you can only find Serderov if you have Russian Premier League as a playable league, as he is in the U-21s which aren’t accessible to see if you don’t have the league active.

        • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

          Ahh, that would explain it. Sorry Sibo.

          • comment avatar Sibo February 25, 2011

            That’s alright. Can I suggest both Abel Hernandez and Javier Pastore of Palermo, I know they are very good prospects…but how good?


          • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

            I’m going to do one or two more players with less reputation then may profile these two. We’ll see mate. :)

  • comment avatar ryan lynch February 24, 2011


    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 24, 2011

      Thanks Ryan, the next guy may be a little expensive but will blow your mind. :)

  • comment avatar CsAtlantis February 24, 2011

    Good profile Darren, i always get Cairney recommended once in a while by my scouts watching the Championship

    An interesting thing is Cairney can also play for Scotland too so it depends on which nation he declares for, he’s played for Scotland U19s and U21s, he has a Scottish father and an English mother

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      Cheers CsAtlantis, Cairney is a good player for the future and its great to know a small Prem club could get him too. I wonder how often he picks Scotland over England in the game?!

  • comment avatar ryan lynch February 25, 2011

    cant wait, might i suggest bas dost

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      Added to my check list mate. :)

  • comment avatar Timmy February 25, 2011

    Hey who is the next player profile?
    give us clue,please?
    and weird Lucas didn’t being world class because he is wonderkid in my newcastle

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      I’m not giving him away other than he’s Brazilian. :)

  • comment avatar Kieran February 25, 2011

    Thanks Darren, he has been signed for my Arsenal team thanks to this

    A suggestion from me is Henri Lansbury from Arsenal :D

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      Good to see the profile helped Kieran. Also thanks for the recommendation, I will see him tonight :)

  • comment avatar jimbo February 25, 2011

    james o shea from some team in the premiership (i forgot which)!

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      He was with Birmingham, think he’s still there…I haven’t seen him reach dizzy heights yet but will definitely look closer :)

  • comment avatar hammyman February 25, 2011

    Hey Darren I have bought Guiliano from internacional for Ac milan in my UEC and in only the second year 2011/12 he has scored 4 and assisted 6 in 8 games

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 25, 2011

      Hi Hammyman, I must admit Guiliano has been within my sites for a while. I reckon he’ll get a profile sometime. :)

  • comment avatar jimbo February 26, 2011

    this guy is 21 or 22 but is still class his name is diego Buonanotte plays in some south american league i thick its the argantinian 1

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 26, 2011

      Yep I’ve seen him Jimbo, very good player and he plays in Argentina for River I think.

  • comment avatar Frank February 27, 2011

    Hi Darren,
    Another great prospect there and these profiles are really helpful. A few suggestions are Vaclav Kadlec from Sparta Prague and Wellington Silva from Fluminense.

    • comment avatar Darren Smith February 27, 2011

      Thanks Frank, I’m glad it helped. Those are good recommendations too. I have already talked about Kadlec earlier but will look at Silva :)

  • comment avatar Faizal April 14, 2011

    I bought cairney in early 2011/2012 season. Given him long loan and when him came back i gave him chance to play in the late of game.
    Now i make him as main playmaker at my club and also for England national team. I call him play for England instead of scotland. He was become one of player an World Cup 2014. I am manager for Man city and Englang national team.

    • comment avatar Darren Smith April 14, 2011

      Hi Faizal, sounds like you got the best from Cairney. He is a great player, especially if trained and developed correctly. Besides at his price tag you can afford a punt. :) Thanks for the comment.

  • comment avatar Tom Miller June 3, 2011

    More players please !!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Especially defenders but also every good cheap player you can reccomend.
    Then it would be good if you made a world XI of cheap youngsters :D

    • comment avatar Darren Smith June 3, 2011

      I’ll try and do more if time allows Tom, lifes just a little hectic and I didn’t want to sacrifice constant story updates.

      • comment avatar Tom Miller June 3, 2011

        Thanks dude.
        Hope I havent wasted your time asking so many questions :D
        I tried the newcatle tactic 4-5-1 but I still manage to loose almost everygame :(
        Any help would be much appreciated. If u want to email me my email adress is :D

        • comment avatar Darren Smith June 3, 2011

          To be honest Tom, I have no more advice other than everything in the handbook and both those tactical posts you saw. Maybe you’re rushing through the games and not taking time to consider team talks and which players/approach is best against individual opponents. Other than that every gamer has to push through these stages to learn more about the game. We only learn by our mistakes, I know I did.

          • comment avatar Tom Miller June 4, 2011

            I’m going to try and just play the matches and hope I get better. I was thinking that you could make a long video of you starting a career from scratch and showing how to do all of the training and stuff. I know it would take a long time but it would be original and i’m very sure that it would help alot of people thanks :D

          • comment avatar Darren Smith June 4, 2011

            OK Tom well I hope it gets better. I agree the video would be something to look into. But really everything I could show is done in posts and the guides. If I offered all my tips in a video the site would have no rating on google.

          • comment avatar Tom Miller June 4, 2011

            Thanks :D
            Could you make a short one an just email it to people who sign up for it? and not actually put it on the website :D

          • comment avatar Tom Miller June 4, 2011


          • comment avatar Darren Smith June 4, 2011

            About the video posts Tom, it would take too long at the moment, it might be something for the future but I don’t have time right now. Wish I could help but like I say, doing those videos would offer very easy answers of which I’ve already told in posts and the guide and the videos would be of no benefit to the sites growth. I’m not ruling it out all together but am for FM11 as there just isn’t enough hours in the day I’m afraid.

          • comment avatar Tom Miller June 4, 2011

            Kl kl doesnt matter :D

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