What’s the Mathieu, gotta no respect

Captain Castledine turns up the derby heatHere we go with Season 6 of Master League in PES2016. I kicked off with a bruising encounter against Leicester, my local rivals in this ML world. A crazily fast 3-3 draw was the outcome. It sounds thrilling — but it wasn’t, really. I found it rather tedious. There are too many 3-3-like scorelines in this game.

I’ve felt from the beginning that the Class of ’16 would not be a long-lasting one. This PES is much too fast and fluid and attack-oriented, and we all know why that is. The online marketplace is in the process of destroying football gaming as we knew it.

But at least Master League has lasted this long. I think it’ll last a few seasons yet. I’m at least two seasons from being eligible to go for a Treble, so there’ll definitely be at least be a Season 7 in due course, and probably a Season 8 too.

But yes, Season 6. Let’s get this thing done. In my pre-season wheeler-dealering, I decided to indulge myself. So I searched for, and found, a particular Regen: step forward, Mathieu. One of the few players with his own category on this blog.

PES2016 a PES legend arrives

PES2016 Mathieu looking good

PES5 players will have just genuflected and crossed themselves and bowed their heads in respect for the best DMF in the greatest football game ever made.

There’s an ancient saying: ‘No man goes down to the same river twice’. It’s a straightforwardly true saying.

PES2016’s Mathieu isn’t going to be like PES5’s legendary version. Firstly, he’s just a 16-year-old Regen. Secondly, and most importantly, in PES2016 he doesn’t play at DMF.

This is shocking. Of course I popped into Edit Mode and gave him DMF as an alternate position. I knew it wouldn’t carry over into my ML world, and it didn’t, but I had to try.

Still, it makes me happy just to see that name on the screen and I’ll relish coaxing his development for however long PES2016 lasts.

Anyway, my other wheeler-dealering (that’s my favourite compound phrase!) resulted in this squad to take me through at least the first half of Season 6:

PES2016 Season 6 start squad and XII now have players rated in the 80s in every position. I tried for a few 90+ players before the window closed, but they are too few and all out of my price range anyway.

I had another tempting offer for Cavani that I wasn’t tempted by. I also had one for another player that I was tempted by: Arcas. Somebody offered £15,000,000.

Arcas is 27 now and somewhat past his best. Still useful, but no Castledine. I was so tempted. But who would I get that’s better? Not many, and they’d dilute my Team Spirit anyway. Still, I lingered over the offer for a while before turning it down (or ignoring it, which amounts to the same thing).

Toni steps up to being first-choice, despite being only 20, and will start as many games as possible next to Cavani. Let’s see how the goals flow from these two as the season progresses.

After Leicester, my next game of the season was a daylit match against Chelsea. They’ve been unbeatable for so many seasons, but I cantered to a resounding 3-0 win.

PES2016 season 6 thumping ChelseaThe great result seen above was followed by a few middling results.

PES2016 season 6 a draw to followAnd yes, that is another daytime match on show there. I think I’ve already had as many sunny matches in Season 6 as I had in the whole of Season 5.

I had a few days off work at the tail-end of last week and played some mammoth sessions. I like to listen to audiobooks and podcasts when playing PES. It’s the perfect accompaniment. I had a great few days, just chillin’ in muh yard, playin’ muh Pro Evo.

I played all the way to Matchday 15. The current table:

PES2016 season 6 after 15I’ll do very well to barge into title contention from here, I think, but my main goal — Champions League qualification — is within reach. I’ve drawn a few too many games already. I need to start winning those ties instead.

I’m saving up the goals and other interesting incidents for a bumper end-of-season highlights reel, set to some appropriate music. If I score any super-duper jaw-dropping goals between now and then, I’ll be sure to post them here on their own.


  1. nG – I visibly flinched when I read the title. Well done sir!

    Why doesn’t Mathieu have any eyes?

  2. Looks like a promising start from a very decent squad there n-G.

    This might shock you but I only THINK I might of had Mathieu in PES 5. I’ll have to look back on my old ML save to see if I actually had him or I’m just familiar through your jottings and/or looking him over in ML back then.

    I’ve got Rabiot on loan at the moment but he’s only back-up to my own DMF colossus Abdullah. He doesn’t notch any howitzers from long range but he’s formed a formidable partnership in the middle with the albeit ageing Kurtic.

  3. Chris99 — just be thankful I didn’t especially buy two other players just so I could go with “What’s the Mathieu, Motta no Jonathan Spector” — although I could have got away with only buying Motta for that one, then pretending in the post that Motta’s good, but he’s no Jonathan Spector. However there’s a limit to how far I’ll go for a good punning post title.

    Shed — you need a squad around this level to compete. I really believe that your squad’s average OPR is a factor in how the AI decides to play.

    Your Mathieu amnesia doesn’t really shock me. Plenty never had him back then and didn’t miss him. A bit like Victor Obinna and similar players, Pro Evo legends but real-life journeymen. Most football game players, alas, are addicted to household names. I’m partially guilty of that too. It’s one of the joys of ML to buy a Robben or a Maradona and see how he gets on in your painstakingly assembled squad after so many seasons. I’ve just wondered what an ML would be like composed entirely of made-up players, and decided it’d be pretty good. Only a few would ever play it, of course, it lacking the Messis and Bales etc. So it’ll never happen.

  4. Knocked out of CL Semis on away goals. 2 games left in League and top on goal difference. Win my last 2 games and I’m champions.

  5. I’ve never had Mathieu. In my experience the best DMF I ever had was Ever Banega in PES 2010. Sure I got his ovr up to 100 or more in my 11 season ML with Valencia.

    Currently in the early stages of a restarted ML with Newcastle, 1-0 up against leaders QPR, Austin breaks through and I decide to sacrifice a player (Vermilj, red card) to save the goal……..and of course they scored from the free kick anyway.

  6. Shed, Mike – me too, I might have had him briefly but the players that spring to mind in that position in those years are not defaults/made up. In fact I think I’ve always made it my policy to sell every last one of them as quickly as possible, I can’t think of any one I have a bond with. Ribeiro yes, but he was a day one youth signing.

    I’ve added another game to the nah, life’s too short pile. I’d picked up deus ex human revolution for 2.50 in cex but the controls are awful after playing so many similar fps type games. The difficulty’s a bit odd too – i veered between instant death when engaged in a shoot out to stealth sections where I could smoke the proverbial cigarette in the luminous balaclava. I’m amazed so many people loved it.

    Fired up gateshead v Blackburn instead and won at a canter. I think this game is going to crack soon, it’ll be 30 odd easy games then half a dozen silverware deciders. I’ve been allowed to develop an insanely good team way too soon. I may eat those words if I lose like I did to Germany but I just don’t feel the old pes ‘start from the basis you have a point’ any more. 2012 was maybe the last year we did?

  7. Turf, agreed. I always sell all my defaults ASAP. I have never bonded with any of them. I guess NG’s dedication to them should be commended.


    Just made it through to the 3rd round of the cup for the first time in this PES! My lowly Newcastle have beaten Liverpool 1-0!

  8. First time poster here. I love the blog. Who would figure reading about someone else’s experience could echo your own on Pes, eh?

    I share some of your frustrations: fouling is ridiculous. But what really grates my tits? Scripting/rubber band AI. I find professional way too easy, but the AI downright cheats at higher difficulty levels. Also, ones players turn into bumbling fools. Would love something in between.

    That all said: I enjoy the arcady nature. Best Pes for me since Pes6.

  9. Upcoming goals video this morning which will contain the finish to season 9, season 10 team plan and my longest goal so far on 2016!!!

  10. Uncle Turf – it’s the original Deus Ex from 2000 that’s always revered as being one of the Best Games Ever. I’ve got a PC copy somewhere but doubt I’ll get around to playing it now. Human Revolution was a 2011 console-targeted follow-up that got lukewarm reviews and has never been loved, from what I can tell.

    Mike – the FA Cup in PES2016 is hard! It seems to be pitched somewhere around Champs League levels from the off. Never got past the second round in all 6 seasons so far.

    Mr Lamprecht – hi and thanks for your comment. I’ll never like the out-and-out arcadiness of PES2016, unfortunately. ‘Arcadey’ isn’t necessarily a bad thing – some of the greatest and most revered PES games ever could be described as arcadey – but in PES2016’s case, in my view, it is a bad thing. No-fouls promotes a relentless, trance-like state that just isn’t what I’ve always loved about the series. PES2016 won’t last more than another couple of seasons. I might even be done with it by Christmas. If you’ve been reading for a while you’ll know I do an end-of-year review-style thing every September. I’ll give you a sneak preview of what September 2016’s end-of-year review score of PES2016 will be: 7/10. A decent football game, but not a PES game as we know it.

  11. Does anyone else’s ML ALWAYS sim 4-0 away wins in other results?

  12. One side effect of playing old PES on a PC is that I always patched it, so other than defaults the players and clubs were changed. My player memories are different to everyone else, like the mighty Gylfi Sigurðsson in PES 2012.

    nG – Surely the original Deus Ex would be https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deus_Ex_Machina_%28video_game%29 on the Spectrum?

    Mr Lamprecht – With phrases like “what really grates my tits” you’ll fit right in.

  13. Chris99 – that Deus Ex and Tai Pan were two games I always wanted to play on the Speccy (at the time) and never managed it. I can’t be bothered with emulators now, they simply shat all over my childhood. Mind if I’d known Grendel was out there…

    I’ve not really reached a level of fury with this PES – not experienced much scripting, not really had any straight from kick offs or impossible to stop goals – but one thing is starting to boil my piss (if I may borrow from the Lamprecht dictionary). The much vaunted collision thing (that we’ve already ridiculed) desperately needs a ‘jostle’ button, like Fifa’s barge or nudge or whatever it is. Against the better teams I find you can’t win the 50/50 races no matter how fast your striker v his defender, you get knocked off the ball too easily with never a foul, your only resort is the ubiquitous slide. Why no upper body control? Simply moving a player towards the ball/man does nothing. It’s not person or context specific either – Pogba gets knocked flying by Willian when going for a rebound dropping on the edge of the box. Thank God there’s a decent ML and some good goals otherwise we’d be poking holes in the mechanics all the time imho.

  14. Mike — no, not here. If you’re at the start give the ML world time to settle again.

    Chris99 — I remember the Martial-like hype for that game as if it was last week. Never got my hands on it as it wasn’t sold in any shops and nobody at school had a copy either.

    Uncle Turf — the collision model is 95% cosmetic, 5% gameplay. The reviews gushed about it but it’s nothing, really. The power of the slide negates everything.

  15. Don Bradman has arrived in the post at work; well not literally as the smell would be atrocious and the postage prohibitive. It had a £49.99 Game sticker on the box so I feel sorry for the bloke I bought it off on ebay if he paid full whack. If I don’t get on with it then the trade in value is still pretty much what I paid for it, so it’s a win/win.

  16. NG I’ve only gone and got through to the quarters haven’t I!? Swansea await, with Ipswich, Liverpool and Sunderland (in a rival game) already despatched I should be confident but we know what this game can do. I’m already resigned to conceding a Sigurdsson free kick.

  17. V good chris99, made me laugh while sitting waiting in the school corridor.

    Arsenal beaten, gerrard signed for January, Valencia thumped, Colombia overcome….and then chelsea went and spoiled it all. Man City lead the league then gateshead, Man U, liverpool and Chelsea all massed just a couple of points behind. Debating whether to sell Sturridge as my recent youth signing Aduriz is going nuclear.

  18. Turf – You haven’t been naughty and been sent to the headmaster have you?

  19. Chris99 – I could probably compose an answer relating to fags in the dorm, six of the best and the like but it’d only encourage the wrong sort of traffic to the site. It’s also a headmistress, and quite a scary one. I sit quietly reading a book while the little fella does his after school club trying my best not to incur her wrath.

    Xcom seems good. I had an introductory hour or so last night – CEX is selling things like this so cheaply you can afford to take a punt. Any other good stuff that passed me by?

  20. Lloyd – that’s a super long-ranger at 0:22 – a proper volley too – and a great keeper save at 5:22. I’ve seen my keepers pull off similar saves. Keepers are only a problem in PES2016 in respect of the infamous ‘corner goals’. They’re otherwise very solid.

  21. Uncle Turf –

    1) Satellites. Prioritise them and deploy them to stop countries panicking and leaving the X-com project. Even if you do this right you’ll still lose a few countries, but you should avoid a game over.

    2) Ironman difficulty. You’re probably already on this, but if not, I recommend restarting on it. Essentially, it’s a cheat-prevention mode. Lose a soldier on a mission and he/she stays lost. It raises the stakes and makes you genuinely distraught at times. You can mix this up by going for higher general difficulty too, but it’s hard enough on Ironman/Normal. My very enjoyable playthrough was on Ironman/Normal.

    3) Find the option in the, uh, Options to disable the way the camera view always switches when you’re about to deliver a killing shot. If you leave this on, you’ll always know you’re about to kill the alien when the camera view switches, before you see the shot actually delivered. This got tiresome after a while. I preferred to watch the top-down action all the time, as then you only know you’ve killed (or not) when the shot lands home. This improved the gameplay and immersion for me.

  22. Turf – Is your CEX a flagship store, or are the ones on the south coast just poor. I went into the local one with my son for pre-Christmas ideas, it was poorly stocked, had higher prices than Game, and we both wiped our feet on the way out.

  23. NG and friends,

    Alas the time has come i’ve got to completion point on PES with a multitude of stars at the tail end of season four. but what now, I was toying with Fifa but think i need a break from football.

    So the question is where to? COD, Fallout 4 (ive never played) or take a chance on Battlefront, Just Cause. I just can’t think what the next choice is, i thought PES was for the whole year but alas I’ve run out of challenges and i cant bear the thought of myclub.

    any ideas welcome at this point. i did toy with the idea of going back to Inquisition.

  24. NG – cheers. Can’t remember what I picked but the camera changes were annoying me and I dropped a couple of clangers trying to get a soldier off the roof.

    Btw Civ 2….looks surprisingly ok on PS3/HDTV. Fortunately it’s like putting an old pair of slippers on, no learning needed, just a blissful diversion. Thanks for the pointer.

    Chris99 – the wiping of feet is the same, Mrs Turf won’t even enter as she finds it makes her want to wash. We’ve got a lot of them up here – Gateshead, Metrocentre, Washington, Newcastle – all within 3 miles of me – and I have always found them cheaper than anywhere except when Game has a 3 for 2 on. I laugh at the prices on Amazon when you can check CEX stock online and wander down to get it. Mind I’ve always found Darryl’s home one of Preston to be a bit thin on the ground as well – lots of copies of the same game. Maybe we’re just a bit more changeable up here and trade in a lot.

  25. Turf, I just belly laughed at your “fags in the dorm” quip and had a 72 year old colleague asking me what I was laughing at. Despite him being the king of offensive jokes I didn’t bother explaining.

  26. stewdog — there’s plenty more PESes in the sea you know, although if your next game absolutely must be next-gen only you’ve only got ’15 to fall back on. ’16 has turned out to be an undisguised multiplayer game. We all sensed that after a few days, of course (no fouls+the powerslide tackle kind of gives it away) but it’s turned out to be true all the way. A shame. Somebody commented a few posts ago that after a certain point of this ML you’ve got 30-odd easy games and 6 or so tussles for silverware. That’s about the size of it.

    I’m still playing but it’s probable I’ll be done by Christmas. It’s worth remembering that not every PES game has come with a guaranteed 10-20 season ML attached. One of the greatest PES games ever, PES6, was only a 5-season ML for me. I did start another one afterwards back then, though, with House Rules. I won’t do that with this one.

    If it’s any help I don’t believe there’s a continuing storyline in Fallout4. MGS5 is great. Then you’ve got your Bloodborne, your Far Cry, your Shadow of Mordor, so much choice now.

  27. Uncle Turf – the Xcom camera settings I ended up with only showed me the 3rd person camera when I was selecting a target to fire at. At all other times the view was elevated, isometric etc. The options you need to find and mess about with are two tick-boxes somewhere in the settings. I remember they both look like they did the same thing and I had to trial and error it until happy. Reason I’m vague is that I can’t remember past a 50-hour campaign where I set up these options 10 months or so ago.

  28. Mike – how on earth do you have a 72 year old colleague, does he not know the retirement age?

    not-Greg – was wondering how Xcom (on Ironman) compares with Fire Emblem for emotional attachment to your characters? Even now I still feel really bad about that time I left the daughter of my avatar Robin within range of a couple of powerful adversaries….

    the defaults on PES2014 are really strong, exactly the same names as the PES2015 crew but even higher stats such as Gellazca in high 70s. Player individuality shining through, e.g. brought my new youth signing CB Nouhei on as a sub and the first tackle he went in for ‘felt’ quite different from my other defenders. However results have been poor so far, maybe because of switching to 0-star passing which also makes crossing manual

  29. Abbeyhill, I work security with me, my mate and a bunch of pensioners who’ve all worked there years. I think they’re scared to leave, think of Brooks in The Shawshank Redemption

  30. abbeyhill – I never lost high-level characters in Fire Emblem, only low-level ones that I was trying to level up, usually foolhardily.

    In Xcom, you take to the battlefield with squads of 4 to 6 characters, and quite quickly each one needs to be pretty high-level or you’re going to lose. I got into the bad habit of always using the same characters. Of course the mission came when I had a full squad wipeout, and that was effectively game over with no others capable of winning the mission, and on Ironman there’s no reloading. Twice that happened. Twice I had to start all over again. On the third attempt I diversified and nurtured a hardcore of about 10-15 characters, and even then I only made it to the end of the game with a few of them. So yes, attachment to high-level characters in Xcom is real and lasting. I had the pleasure of seeing my best character win the whole game for me in the final mission.

  31. Uncle Turf – I really enjoyed XCOM, saved me during the darkness of the PES 2014 year. Well that and Ni No Kuni, my personal favourite PS3 game of all time! but only for those who enjoy turn based JRPGs, the Ghibli animation makes it so.

    My perfect computer game would be a football sim with a Ghibli illustrated JRPG back story. If I was a millionaire I would commission this game tomorrow.

  32. Cook,how about the Inazuma Eleven series?

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