Key Takeaways

All Player Ratings from the Big 5 Leagues are now up to date after the scoring system change, pre-season and the opening games. Here are my key takeaways after that process:

  • Ratings now feel more decisive and accurate and there are fewer players sitting in the middle on 3 out of 5 stars
  • This is because a) the more hours I spend evaluating players (and it’s a lot!) the better and more experienced I get as time goes on and b) the new scoring system has a way of pushing strong players forward and dragging weaker players back opening up clear gaps in quality.
  • As a result, more players have been pushed up into the 4 out of 5 stars range and more moved down into the 2 out of 5 stars range. 
  • I am a tough marker and 4 out of 5 stars is hard to get and indicates a very strong player. 3 out of 5 stars is now more meaningful and is a good rating for a player, and a better positive indicator than it used to be because fewer players now have it.  
  • 2 out of 5 stars is an average rating but with the growth of IPD, a good 2 out of 5 stars striker with decent goal threat can still have value. 
  • It was interesting to go back and look at my initial reaction to the performance changes. I suggested that a small group of elite high creativity/high threat players could dominate and with all I have learned since, I think this is absolutely right. 
  • I also said back then that weak players who benefited from the changes were probably still going to be average or weak. There are not many players who have been turned from zero to hero by these changes. Rather, it has made good players better in general.
  • The fuss over long passes, dribbles etc was understandable, but as I said at the time, they have settled into being just one of many secondary but important factors.
  • Overall if I have to say who the big winners and losers are: the winners are the high creativity/high goal threat players and the losers are those high baseliners who used to steal wins without goals or assists (i.e high baseline centre backs and deep midfield players). 
  • Now the ratings are baselined, I am going to be using them much more frequently throughout scouting so that members get a much better idea of exactly what I mean when I am talking about the strength of a player and can compare players against each other more accurately. 
  • I will now also have more time for other areas of the site now this is done!

Serie A Ratings Updated

Performance ratings for all notable Serie A players have now been refreshed taking into account the new scoring matrix and performances from pre-season and the opening games.

The changes should not be much of surprise to members who have been following the Scouting in recent weeks. Reasons for changes have in almost all cases been discussed there. 

Usually, Scouting will detail the reason for each and every change. When dealing with so many changes after the new matrix it is not possible to provide a write up for every single one this time.

But, for convenience I have listed the ones that have improved or declined below.

The full tables, with Serie A players updated, are now available in the usual place in the members area under defenders, midfielders and forwards respectively.

A Note on Performance Ratings

I put a great deal of time into compiling the performance ratings. They are sound, evidence based judgements of the real performance strength of players. I am a tough marker and a player has to do a lot to get 4 stars or more.

Some people may find the ratings surprising as they can be shockingly different to the general chatter you see about how good a player may or may not be on social media or the perception of how good a player is in reality.

This is because when assessing the ratings all hype and bluster is removed – they are an evidence based assessment of how likely the player is to deliver big performance scores consistently on the Football Index. I have a high degree of confidence in them.

However, as discussed often in Key Strategy, to succeed we must use the ratings and the Scouting information in combination with the trend information available on the Dashboard and consider whether they are good value or not.

A strong Current rating is an indicator they are likely to put up consistent strong performance scores. Whilst price rises often follow, that isn’t always the case if the player is off trend.

Equally, a player with a low Current rating is still capable of getting a rare win or scoring and soaring in price if their trend fit works.

So, I would absolutely not go out and automatically buy all 4 star or above players or sell any 2 and below. That is not the intended way to use them. The primary purpose of the ratings is to be the “hype buster”. They help us judge whether a player is really strong or not and then we can trade accordingly.

For example, I may be wondering whether a player who has won recently is worth holding even if they have risen in price. If they have a high rating and are likely to win again, I am more likely to keep them.

If on the other hand a player has just won or risen in price but actually has a weak rating and is unlikely to win again, I am much more likely to sell and take that profit before they blank a few times and traders realise their weakness.

I may also hold a striker at 2 stars if they are good value and good for IPD, that’s absolutely fine and the ratings do not reflect IPD appeal (that’s covered in Scouting).



Nicolo Barella

Josep Illicic

Alejandro Gomez

Radja Nainggolan

Marcelo Brozovic

Stefano Sensi

Valentino Lazaro

Joaquin Correa

Luis Alberto

Fabian Ruiz

Eljif Elmas

Lorenzo Pellegrini

Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Rodrigo De Paul

Alessio Romagnoli

Giovanni Di Lorenzo

Alex Sandro

Ricardo Rodriguez

Davide Calabria

Theo Hernandez

Pedro Guilherme

Romelu Lukaku

Alexis Sanchez

Ciro Immobile

Dries Mertens

Lorenzo Insigne

Hirving Lozano

Edin Dzeko

Domenico Berardi

Simone Verdi

Andrea Belotti



Stefan De Vrij

Stefan Radu

Kevin Malcuit

Faouzi Ghoulam

Milan Skriniar

Kalidou Koulibaly

Luiz Felipe

Diego Godin

Samu Castillejo

Franck Kessie

Lucas Paqueta

Roberto Gagliardini

Emre Can

Adrien Rabiot

Miralem Pjanic


Piotr Zielinski

Jordan Veretout

Fabio Borini

Krzysztof Piatek

Ante Rebic

Mario Balotelli

Lautaro Martinez

Matteo Politano

Gonzalo Higuain

Federico Bernardeschi

Paulo Dybala

Cristiano Ronaldo

Arkadiusz Milik

Yann Karamoh

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