AI generally don't bother trying to sign good regens from what I have seen. often there are some regens with man utd/liverpool/psg etc interested in them but i've rarely seen them actually make bids. in a way I wish they would compete for them, but I guess I shouldn't complain. they are extremely protective of their own regens though, I find it impossible to try to buy regens off the big clubs. in my player search I disable england completely due to the excessive transfer fees.
this season I have bought ten 16 year olds for a total of 29 million upfront (i make sure to include as many clauses as possible and any time I am signing a young player I add the "percentage of profit from next sale" and then click on remove and exclude). I only sign them if they have 1 1/2 star CA and 3 1/2 star PA (according to my scouts, who are all at least 19 PA scouts) - unless they have great starting attribute distribution or are very cheap (i like buying players from colombia and czech republic for this reason). I sign any of my youth intake that are predicted to be 2 1/2 stars or above.
the most important thing I do is to keep the players at the club until they are 19. my youth coaches are all at least 4 stars with high working with youngsters so there is little point in loaning them out at 18. once they turn 19 I start offering them out on loan for fees, I have a look at potential teams squads to make sure they will get games, and almost all of my players I have loaned out this season are getting significant playing time. I offer them out for 100% wages (most of them are on max 10k p/w) and 250k per month loan fee.
this season I will earn 42 million from the loan fees, and will save the money I would have paid out on wages. I'm loaning out 2 star CA players to mainly Bundesliga 2/dutch teams for 250k per month. it's easy to see this can be very lucrative. I find this is much more profitable than simply selling the players, because from my (1200 hour experience ) the AI always under pays for transfers but will happily pay over the odds on loan fees. I play with a small database and still find it very difficult to sell players.
now don't get me wrong I have bought a few incredible players for big fees in my first few seasons at bayern (such as him), but this is only to make sure that I walk the league. the most challenging thing about playing the regen game is making sure you can actually stay in the job long enough for any of them to progress to the first team (I am in my 4th season at bayern after being sacked by milan and I now have a couple of them on the subs bench).
make sure to start applying for affiliates that will send young players to train at your team. the best ones I've had so far have been chivas, defensor sporting and velez. sadly milan sacked me just after I got defensor on this save. right now I have sparta (well established), panathinaikos (extensive), hajduk (established) and viitorul (extensive). my dream is to get partizan, red star belgrade or dinamo zagreb as an affiliate, but I haven't succeeded thus far, due to their reputation being too high.
here are a few of the players I have got so far, max price of 5 million. bertrand - girard - benelli - hamzic
these ones at least have a genuine chance at being top players in the future. hamzic cost 1.2 mil from kaiserslauten, and funnily enough it was my director of football who randomly signed him out of nowhere
so yeah, anyway...