6 big changes that need to happen in FIFA 21 - Dexerto
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6 big changes that need to happen in FIFA 21

Published: 9/May/2020 14:22

by Joe Craven

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With FIFA 20’s life cycle approaching its end, these are our picks for the 6 changes we want to see in the next instalment of EA Sports’ immensely popular football series. 

Many would argue FIFA 20 has been a mixed bag since its September 2019 release. While the view of critics was fairly positive at first, the FIFA community appears to have grown increasingly frustrated with the game’s developers over recurrent issues and a lack of tangible updates.

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It goes without saying that this list is subjective, and you might disagree with some elements. That’s fine. Without further ado, let’s get into the list of major changes that need to happen in FIFA 21.

Make heading great again

Okay, not exactly FIFA 14 great. Many players will still have nightmares about Zlatan Ibrahimovic whirling away from the net having scored a hat-trick of headers. But, let’s be honest, crossing and heading in FIFA 20 isn’t up to scratch.

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EA’s reasoning for the nerf to heading was so players are less reliant on RNG, and more on player skill. While that’s understandable, it somewhat contradicts their commitment to make FIFA the most realistic football game there is.

Crossing is weak too, with even the game’s best wingers regularly under or overhitting their balls into the box. If it’s not wayward of its target, chances are the opposition keeper has come and claimed it.

On the off chance the ball actually makes it to your unmarked striker, regardless of who it is, they’re probably going to mess up the header and put the ball miles over the bar.

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EA Sports
Your chances of scoring from corners have been massively reduced in FIFA 20.

The biggest problem with the nerf to heading is that everyone is forced to play the same way. Any player who’s got more than a few FIFA 2o matches under his belt will know that there’s no point crossing the ball into the box. This forces everyone to play centrally with through balls or work wide play into a cut-back.

Passing

FIFA 20 saw a number of changes to passing. Most notably, there’s a weird reluctance from your players to weight passes correctly, almost as if they don’t trust their teammates to adequately control the ball.

Wingers are often left stranded because central players roll the ball out to them leisurely, rather than putting their foot through it.

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It opens up nearly every offensive pass to interception and, when compared to faster games like FIFA 13, it’s clear how much the game’s passing has been slowed down over the last few years.

EA Sports
Passing is weirdly un-smooth in FIFA 20.

The lack of fluidity with FIFA 20’s passing is one reason people have accused the FIFA series of going backwards. It was never perfect, but efforts to improve it have just made it considerably slow and tiresome.

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Free kicks and penalties need simplifying

Free kicks in FIFA 20 currently constitute some combination of luck and wiggling the right joystick. There weren’t many complaints about the old system of taking free kicks, so the change certainly came out of the blue.

But now, after aiming vaguely wide of the target, players are charged with whipping the right joystick in a weird semi-circular motion in the hopes it pushes the ball towards the net.

It’s the same with penalties. What was wrong with the sliding mechanic featured in FIFA 13 and 14, where players had to time their penalties in the green area and then aim? That was done away with years ago, replaced by a luminescent arrow that behaved on its own accord.

If that wasn’t inconsistent enough, it’s now been replaced by a shaking circle that look likes its trying to keep itself warm. Free kicks and penalties have become big issues, truly emblematic of developers tampering with gameplay that should have been left alone. Just simplify them both for FIFA 21.

EA Sports
FIFA 20’s penalties don’t need the shaking circle of doom.

Career mode and Pro Clubs are still amateur

The majority of EA’s focus in the past few FIFAs has, quite understandably, been on Ultimate Team. As the most popular mode, it stands to reason that it receives the largest share of attention. However, career mode and pro clubs have been left on the back-burner, free of meaningful changes for years.

In terms of Pro Clubs, there could be way more customization than there currently is. Why are subs not a thing? Why can players not mess around with player size, names and everything in between? It feels like EA found something that worked and have stuck to it for too long.

Similarly, career mode is outdated. When you compare it with a game like Football Manager 20, which provides nearly countless opportunities for tactics, training, contracts, staff and players, it seems bizarre that the furthest FIFA has gone is having a player sassily email you because he’s been dropped for a cup tie away at Torquay.

EA Sports
Press conferences with multiple choice answers aren’t the droids we’re looking for.

Different play-styles should be different

One of the biggest issues with FIFA 20 – and any sports game – is that players all being forced to play the same way causes the game to get stale, fast. In FIFA 20, players have no choice but to play centrally and avoid crossing at all costs. Pace still rules going forward, with slower strikers picked by absolutely nobody.

Tony Pulis or Neil Warnock tactics should definitely not be dominant, but forcing everyone to pass to a striker, who then looks for a through ball to another player can get tiresome, fast.

Players should be able to edit tactics (in all modes) to a point where it meaningfully affects how your team plays. No, the ‘overload ball side’ defensive tactic doesn’t count.

Defending and attacking are not pendulums

What I mean by this, is that games feel too inconsistent. The amount of times games end 7-7, 4-6, or 5-4. The balance between attack and defence feels off.

EA deliberately nerfed defending in FIFA 20 in order to force players to do more than hold down the A/X button and successfully dispossess opponents. Players are now entirely responsible for their defensive movement, in a change many can get behind. The problem is that players haven’t quite adjusted yet, and it’s still way too easy to dribble back and forth and find space to shoot.

EA Sports
Do you enjoy turning on the spot rapidly and then scoring? Kylian Mbappe is the man for you.

Top dribblers like Kylian Mbappe or Ryan Kent are able to turn back and forth on the spot in the box, before a defender backs off and they slot the ball into the corner. It’s a manipulation that should have been patched, and needs to be avoided in next year’s title.

If such a drastic change is made to defending, it needs to be matched in some way on the offensive end.


That just about rounds off our list of the 6 big changes we want to see in FIFA 21! What did we miss? Tweet us @UltimateTeamUK to let us know your thoughts.

FIFA

FIFA 21 TOTW 2 live: Lewandowski, Haaland, Kane, Saint-Maximin, more

Published: 7/Oct/2020 18:05 Updated: 7/Oct/2020 18:11

by Isaac McIntyre

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EA SPORTS have released the second batch of Team of the Week players in FIFA 21 Ultimate Team, and it looks like there are some exciting cards up for grabs this week.

Following the completion of another busy game week across football’s top-flight leagues, a new set of TOTW players has been released, featuring some huge names and valuable cards.

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Dexerto made a number of predictions earlier in the week, included at the bottom of this article, so let’s see how they stacked up with leaks and ultimately, the official team as well.

FIFA 21 Team of the Week 2

FIFA 21 TOTW 2
EA SPORTS
The full Team of the Week #2 in FIFA 21 Ultimate Team!

Just as with the first Team of the Week, the second TOTW squad is stacked with top talent, such as the likes of Lewandowski, Courtois, Kane, and Haaland. While not as high-rated as those studs, the likes of Milan’s Hernandez and Newcastle’s Saint-Maximin should also draw a lot of attention as being “meta” players.

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Here are some of the players you might be interested in:

  • Erling Haaland (86)
  • Robert Lewandowski (92)
  • Harry Kane (89)
  • Thibaut Courtois (90)
  • Ben Chilwell (84)
  • Theo Hernandez (83)
  • Jack Grealish (83)
  • Ollie Watkins (81)
  • Allan Saint-Maximin (83)
  • Renato Sanchez (82)
  • Marcel Halstenberg (84)

FIFA 21 Team of the Week 2 leaked

Ahead of EA SPORTS confirming the full TOTW #2, the full squad was claimed to have been leaked – and the leaker even managed to get his hands on the same image that EA would end up tweeting out.

When did TOTW 2 go live in FIFA 21?

EA SPORTS revealed this next FIFA Team of the Week squad at 6PM (UK time) Wednesday, October 7, 2020. As per usual, they were announced and droped into packs at 6pm BST / 12pm CT / 1pm EST / 3am AEST.

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These boosted player upgrades are now being announced at the same time as they drop in-game in FIFA 21, unlike other years where we knew about them three hours prior. 

FIFA 21 Ultimate Team Season 1 Rewards
EA SPORTS
This could be a cracking TOTW just in time for the full FIFA 21 release!

FIFA 20 Team of the Week 32 predictions

What a week! Competitions around the world have come back for the 2020/21 season, soon after the end of last year’s staggering campaign. The back-to-back nature of these seasons, it seems, is going to lead to some exciting games.

The biggest news from the Premier League this week was Aston Villa and Tottenham each dolling out huge defeats for Liverpool and Manchester United respectively. Ollie Watkins scored three and assisted one as he led the Villans to a 7–2 victory over the champions, while Heung Min Son was unplayable against United.

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There were a number of other standout performances across the weekend too. Neymar Jr. was at his electric best against Angers, while FIFA 21 cover star Erling Haaland kept up his goalscoring record in a 4–0 win over Freiburg on Saturday.

Here are our TOTW 2 predictions, so let’s see how many we got right this week!

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TOTW 2 predictions

  • GK – Marko Dmitrović – SD Eibar
  • GK – Jiri Pavlenka – Werder Bremen
  • CB – Marvin Friedrich – Union Berlin
  • RB – Facundo Roncaglia – Osasuna 
  • LB – Ben Chilwell – Chelsea
  • LB – Aaron Cresswell – West Ham United
  • LB – Marcel Halstenberg – RB Leipzig
  • CM – Jorginho – Chelsea
  • CM – Mikel Merino – Real Sociedad
  • CM – Dani Di Wit – AZ Alkmaar
  • CM – Mario Pasalic – Atalanta
  • CAM – Jack Grealish – Aston Villa
  • RW – James Rodriguez – Everton
  • RM – Marcus Harness – Portsmouth
  • RW – Galeno – Braga 
  • LM – Allan Saint-Maximin – Newcastle United
  • LW – Neymar – PSG
  • LW – Heung Min Son – Spurs
  • ST – Erling Haaland – Borussia Dortmund 
  • ST – Robert Lewandowski – Bayern Munich
  • ST – Patson Daka –  RB Salzburg
  • ST – Callum Wilson – Newcastle United
  • ST – Ollie Watkins – Aston Villa

As always, make sure to follow us on Twitter @UltimateTeamUK for all the latest FIFA 21 news, updates, leaks, guides, and more.