It was 100% the right choice to go back to where I started with FIFA20, and resume my Leeds Utd save in the Premier League. Playing a football game career long-term means putting down roots. I did that with Leeds and it was foolish of me to think I could walk away.
The three players on show above are three players with whom I had laid down roots for different reasons. Phillips is my CDM, a true rock, with a great shot on him. Colombo is a Youth promotee whom I am nurturing into the big time. Shackleton is a young midfielder with a touch of Rice about him – yes, I do mean Rice of Master League fame. The PES reference points are still very much alive with me, even if the game/mode isn’t.
My Castledine equivalent would be Hernandez, who is 34 and going to decline and/or retire quite soon. I could meddle in the PC editor and knock 10 years off his age, but I am playing this mode and this career ‘straight’. No messing with world parameters any more than I already have done with the Realism Mod.
Season 2 in total, and I am now heading firmly for mid-season.
All told I have probably played a full 2 seasons’ worth of matches, as I spent lots of time replaying the same sequence of matches at the start of this season in an effort to test out the PC mods I’m using and attempt to acclimatise to Tactical Defending. I have not so far attempted Tactical Defending again. I’m happy with Legacy Defending for now.
I bought one big new player at the tail-end of the August window. I shopped for a big new striker who would get the bread and butter goals, the tap-ins, the scrambled headers and the like. They’re the bricks and mortar (as well as the bread and butter) of any league campaign.
Step forward Deulofeu, whom Watford were willing to let go for £35m, a bargain at today’s inflated market prices, especially to a divisional rival currently on the same level as them. I doubt any such move would have been allowed in our so-called ‘real life’ (which has really jumped the shark lately). But this is why fantasy is so much better than reality.
Anyway, Deulofeu was quiet for a few matches, and I thought, uh-oh. ‘What a waste of money’ and so on.
Then he sparked into life, and started bagging all the Micky Quinn-style chances he was specifically brought in to score. Which helped propel us from bottom of the table to mid-table. Here’s a couple of those ‘ordinary goals’ that I posted in comments over the weekend:
And there’s more where they came from, as we shall see.
I concede far too many goals for me to make any meaningful progress in the league, as the table above shows.
I win a match or two and then get thumped. In FIFA20 it can feel that if you go a goal down you’re battling against a too-strong headwind and there’s no chance to come back.
I have come back once or twice from a goal down – as seen at the end of today’s ‘Miscellaneous Moments’ clip video.
We start with me attempting yet again to score a volley from a corner. One day…
There is also an amazing miss by the usually-clinical AI in the guise of Burnley. And then I punish that miss by scoring two late, late goals (Deulofeu and Barbosa) to take the win.