So, EA has just officially announced sequel to the world’s most popular sports game, FIFA 16. From the very beginning, til the very end they have bragged how vastly improved the newest iteration of the FIFA franchise will be. They’ve mentioned, that now the game will have the moments of magic that will really highlight the beauty of the sport. They’ve also commented on improvement in terms of passing and team-play within the mid-field. All this was really impressive, however, the change that they’ve talked about the most, was at least to me, most disappointing.
The Improved defending, that EA has spoken for good five minutes about, was just like all the other features, interesting. However, once I’ve finished writing the news piece on FIFA 16, and had some time to think about it. I’ve come to a conclusion, that it is not as good as it seems. Yes, they’ve said that the AI will be improved, and will finally stop the defenders from dropping the defensive line, but they’ve also stated that this year, defending is all about agility.
In real football, all center-backs are at least 180cm tall, and are usually of thicker physical build than other outfield players. Yes, there are exceptions to the rule, but when a team looks for a perfect center back, they look for someone who is tall, and can physically outperform other opposition’s players in terms of strength. And this why, on most occasions, they are not as quick nor agile as the wingers or strikers. So concentrating on such features of the defenders is sightly out of touch.
To put things in perspective, I’ll use John Terry, Chelsea FC’s defender, to showcase how inaccurate concentrating on defenders agility can be.
John Terry, Chelsea’s defender, one of the very few players to play every single game of the season. He has done so at the age of 34, while at the same time guaranteeing himself a spot in BPLs team of the season
This year, Chelsea Football Club has won Barclay’s Premier league with ease, and this is not because they were an aggressive team, this is because their defense was simply immaculate. Game after game, they would prevail even against the toughest opposition, as week in week out a single player, their captain, was in charge of their defense. Most would expect someone reasonably young, and athletic to achieve such feat. However, John Terry, the man in question is nothing like the spectacular youngster that most would expect to see on the pitch.
John Terry is currently 34 years old, and this year was Chelsea’s oldest player on the pitch. With his height of 187cm and weight of 90kg he was also one of the tallest and the heaviest. However, this did not stop him from becoming the only player to be capped in every single league game, and ultimately best defender in the league and one of the best in Europe. And this is not because he was quick to react and to recover, it is because years of experience allowed him to outperform the youngest and the most talented.
This shows, that in sport like football, speed at times is meaningless, and concentrating on it is simply peculiar. However, before I can elaborate fully on FIFA 16, I will have to play it first, as what was said during EA’s press conference may not be an accurate representation of how the game really works. Maybe this only applies to players who are only capable of performing recoveries, or maybe it is just a trait like flair. No matter how it will be implemented it will surely benefit the game in way or the other.