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Published: 8/Apr/2021 8:19 Updated: 8/Apr/2021 7:39by Isaac McIntyre
Greedy FIFA 21 players, not EA SPORTS, are killing the Ultimate Team’s iconic weekly TOTW promo, and it’s reached a worrying fever-pitch this year — a chorus of FUT fans want Team of the Week changed, but is the ‘in-form’ promo really that bad, or have FIFA fans just become spoiled?
Ultimate Team was first released all the way back in FIFA 10 as part of a new content expansion across the football title’s PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions.
With it came a now-iconic promo: Team of the Week.
These rare, black-coated, “in-form” upgrades have become synonymous with the Ultimate Team game mode.
Across FIFA history, the greatest cards that spring to mind were TOTW releases. Samuel Eto’o and Moussa Sissoko in FIFA 11. Maikon Leite (FIFA 12), Romain Alessandrini (FIFA 18), and Wissam Ben Yedder (FIFA 20).
In recent years, however, the promo has come under fire. FIFA fans have dubbed it a “waste of time,” and many have turned their back on in-forms.
Players are blaming EA SPORTS. They look at those same black-coated upgrades that are inked through FIFA’s history, and mark them “borderline useless”. This is a worrying trend in FIFA 21, for one reason: it’s not the dev’s fault.
There’s only one party to blame: greedy FIFA fans.
Now, we here at Dexerto completely understand playing FIFA a lot. This writer in particular grinds Ultimate Team every week, staying on top of the latest SBCs, constantly swapping my team, and building towards an “endgame” squad. But not everyone plays FUT like that.
And this, in essence, is the main problem.
This year there’s been Ones to Watch, Rulebreakers, RTTF, TOTGS, Freeze, TOTY, Headliners, What If, and FUT Birthday. That’s a fair amount of promos.
These new events, special cards, and upgraded SBCs, those are the super-boosted players the FIFA grinders should be adding to their squad. But, the TOTW cards are for the casuals, ducking their heads in once or twice a week.
Let’s prove the point.
On March 5, the second What If team was released. One of the most hyped cards was Everton’s Richarlison. He’d scooped a boost to 87, with potential for an even bigger bump in the “live” card. Five days later, Harry Kane’s second in-form card was released, 90 rated, in the 24th team of the week.
Hardcore FIFA fans turned their noses up at Kane’s 2IF. 72 pace was far lower than Richarlison’s 89, and the Spurs striker had 6 less dribbling.
Not very ‘meta,’ they said. Like this week, the team was dubbed “useless.”
Except, the Kane card has 30,514 games played, according to FUTBIN. Richarlison’s scrapes in at 14,761, which is less than half. While hardcore players were overlooking the 90-rated Kane card, casual fans were scooping him up in spades.
His first in-form? A huge 949,655 games, despite just 70 pace.
This is why Team of the Week must stay in Ultimate Team. Dedicated, grinding FIFA fans don’t like it. That’s fine; it’s not for them. It hasn’t been for a long time.
We’ll concede, of course, that the Team of the Week promo isn’t perfect either. There’s a few ways EA SPORTS could spice up the weekly in-form squads, from a bigger boost (a +2 upgrade is often suggested) or boosting player stats specifically for their on-field achievements.
Another TOTW issue is that EA picks the cards that make the cut.
This means some stars are left out, like Jota and Ben Yedder last round. We predicted both for TOTW 28 — and rightfully so — but neither made it.
There’s always ways that any given FUT promo can be improved, 100%. EA SPORTS needs to sit down and have a think about how to jazz up the Team of the Week squads heading into FIFA 22, that we can agree on.
But let’s give the calls to remove it a rest, shall we? We all know they’re not “endgame” cards. That doesn’t mean they don’t have a place in Ultimate Team.