This is the Title

Season 1 of Career Mode in FIFA20 on PC has ended with a Championship title for Leeds. I played the entire season on Professional difficulty – FIFA’s middle difficulty – which was plenty challenging enough while I oriented myself to this new football gaming world.

Season 2 in the Premier League has already started as I type. Leeds was meant to be a test Career Mode. I picked them quite randomly. I think now that I will follow through and play at least a Season 2 with them before considering a lower-league start with another club. It’ll be nice to have a taste of the Premier League.

I completed the last leg of the Championship journey on vanilla gameplay in the end. The mods I had been using to this point were nuked last week by an official EA update.

Vanilla turned out to play similar enough to the modded gameplay to be more than acceptable as a stopgap. A hugely enjpoyable 6-match session saw us run out clear winners in the title race. The final table:

It went all the way to the final game, where I had to win or draw to ensure the title. Our goal difference was worse than Forest’s, who were then 3 points behind us. We won and they lost so it didn’t matter in the end.

Silverware!It really was touch and go. Professional has not been easy at all. Particularly during the bulk of the season whilst using modded gameplay.Thoughts about FIFA20? It’s got long-range goals and it’s got individuality and it’s got bags of atmosphere and class. I’m enjoying it more than I’ve enjoyed any football game since PES2019 last year. My current score for it would be an easy 9/10.

It’s a fantastic game of football that is missing just two things.

The most important thing is fouls. FIFA20 would be the actual perfect football game – a true ‘weapon to surpass Metal Gear’ – if it only had that extra layer to its game. I do get the odd match with ‘one or two fouls’, but the overhwelming majority of matches feature 0 (zero). As we all know, fouls and free kicks provide an important extra dimension that is needed at times, particularly in tight matches. There are modding options here that I am currently exploring.

The other thing FIFA20 is missing is less important, on the face of it, but still important to me – I mean the ability to have the player name displayed above the active player’s head.

Before you all write in to tell me that the option IS in the game – no, it is not in the game.

The option is there to have the name displayed for a fraction of a second before it fades out. I don’t want that. I want the name on for the whole time the player is active. Yes, just like in PES. (Sorry.)

Instead of telling, I’ll show you why this visual feature is important to me – and perhaps to you as well.

Look at the replay below. I’ve scored quite a few long-range goals in FIFA20 so far, all with the same player, Hernandez. Last night I got another long-range goal. Here it is:

Now, you probably noticed the name of the player during that replay, as I have cued you to notice it, but playing in real time, I didn’t notice the name of the player. And if you miss the fraction of a second when the player name is on display above his head, you have no idea who scored the goal until I tell you that it was Klich, another midfielder.

It’s a minor issue to be sure, and one that I am adjusting to – getting to know your players is part of it – but I would like to have the option in FIFA. Again, perhaps there are modding options here.

Neither of the above issues are threatening to spoil the party thus far.

Those who have been waiting with sardonic glee for me to up sticks and get back to PES might have to wait a good long while.

An assortment of goals and moments from my run-in, and also the scenes at the end of the season with the trophy presentation:

Updated: 18th February 2020 — 11:48


  1. With me being off work for a week it has meant I have played lots of Fifa this week and am nearing the end of season 2 with 10 games left. The experience has got even better as World Class is just brutal. For nearly all of the season I have been in the relegation zone. However, I have been on a 8 game none losing streak and am now seven points clear of danger. What I have discovered is that you need to be tactically sound and can’t go into each game with the same formation. I also love that players get moody more often. This stops you filling a squad of all star players and need to have the right balance and mix of players with different squad roles. Players are now more likely to put in transfer requests. This wasn’t so much the case in season 1 when things were going well. But I soon saw a change this season when we were up against it. Hovering between a 9.0 and 9.5 at the moment for me. A few classy goals have helped raise the score.

  2. Two goals from this morning’s session:-

  3. Darryl – lovely hit that second one! Similar to mine that I posted above, it’s one where it doesn’t burst the net but flies in a delightful arc out of the keeper’s reach.

    Are you using Tactical Defending? I’ve been Legacy all the way, but the more I get into FIFA the more I want to play it as-is.

  4. NG – I did start on Tactical Defending but have moved it to Legacy once I went to World Class as I was getting regular cricket score games. I do think it is improved but still the issues are the same and it doesn’t do what you want your defenders to do, especially as tactics become more prominent. Say for example you want to play a high pressing game against an opponent it really isn’t possible with Tactical Defending as you don’t really press. Overall the games are much tighter and better balanced on Legacy in my opinion.

  5. Had a mega busy weekend and start to the week so just been catching up on posts.
    Shame you auto-updated NG, but good that you’re still enjoying vanilla FIFA anyway.
    I haven’t updated so still playing with FIFER Mod 1.3, approaching season 2’s end, still on professional and still having a great time, plenty of bits lined up for Thursdays FIFAFX post.

    I will also be doing a give away, a free copy of FIFA 20 on the PS4 for the winner, have to decide what type of contest though.

    I’m playing on tactical defending because legacy is too easy to just clamp hold the pressure/tackle button and have your players auto-take the ball,m if its there, you will use it, and it ruins the art of defending.

    Using the ‘Team press’ tactic by pressing down on the d-pad to open up defensive tactics during a game then pressing the d-pad left enables this, coupled with correct individual player instructions, its perfectly possible to employ a pressing game, I use it a lot.

    Whats with the arrows when shooting Darryl ?

  6. Paul – on World Class I was getting regular 4-3 type scorelines using Tactical Defending. Since changing to Legacy Defending the games have been tighter. I do agree though that the Tactical Defending is much better and enjoyed it on Professional level. However, it is a mix of my skill levels and the difficulty of World Class at the moment that means for now that Legacy Defending is a good leveller. If I get to a point where World Class gets to easy then changing back would be the next step instead of upping the difficulty.

    The arrows just help with long range shooting as I play with semi assisted shooting. It is more for height than direction.

  7. Ahh I see Darryl – those arrows would annoy the hell out of me, ruins the visual aspect, but if you find them useful then a good option to have.

    Agree there are pros and cons for each defending type, but the reason games have been tioghter for you on Legacy is purely down to the fact that you can, and will, and do, clamp the ‘automatically hone in and take the ball back’ button, which requires no skill at all, I did it too on legacy, its habit.

    With Tactical defending you have to use contain, jockey, secondary press, all at the right times, and essential is using the RS to flick between players to cover runs, leser stats players such as full backs with lower defensive awareness stats will be less able to cover runs due to being out of position, or not able to react as quickly, which is how it should be, legacy defending more or less null and voids defensive stats.

    Great to see a few of us enjoying FIFA this year though, I always said if you give it the proper time it needs its a much much better game than PES, it was last year and absolutely is this year.

    I’ve pretty much got the FIFA custom kit design nailed now too.
    Expect to see new custom designed Home, Away, Third & GK kits for the start of season 3 in tomorrows post.

  8. Paul/Darryl – I’ve got tanked in the Premier League a few tmes already using Legacy and I am curious about Tactical (never really given it a go) so I will try it for definite at some point, probably not in time for Friday’s post though as I might not get on the game until the weekend at the earliest. I have begun my Premier League story though and it’s great. Still on vanilla gameplay too, not even a Slider touched!

    I also notched up another long-ranger yesterday with a) the white kit on, and b) yet another player other than Hernandez. Here is Phillips, a great CDM by the way (the DMF lingo is dropping away…). Pre-season tournament match:

  9. Another great goal NG, you’re banging ’em in!
    You will love the presentation of the premier league, every single stadium real and fully licensed, appropriate adboards etc, its a joy !

    Are you using the reshade setting still? And I noticed you never used the TV logos pack I sent you?!
    I can update it for the Premier League if you want a sky sports/ITV/BBC whatever one.

  10. Paul – I am now using the logos pack, this was a pre-season tournament which is why it never showed, you’ll see it in highlights on Friday. When I say I’ve had tankings in the Premier League, I mean it…

    The reshader is still very much on, yes. Does it look off in the vid? I still get the Reshader overlay popup at first boot (top of screen) and assume that means it’s loaded up and running OK.

  11. NG – the TV logos pack I sent you was specific to generic tournaments and the EFL championship, it won’t show up in premier league matches as its tied to specific tournament ID’s, I never ever saw it in use in any of your EFL championship clips, thats why I asked.

    As for Re-shade, I emant are you using the default settings or your own settings or the FIFAFX shader ini file I sent you ?

  12. Paul- I did get the hang of it as you have to use jockey and contain a lot more and was fine on Pro level. However, you have hit the nail on the head when it comes to the higher difficulty and playing at lower level. The stats do come into play a lot more with Tactical Defending but on higher difficulties the stats are overridden and the CPU has a clear advantage. This wouldn’t be a problem playing in the Premership or a decent Championship side. Will certainly be back on Tactical Defending at some point.

  13. Worth remembering too Darryl that I play using the FIFER realism Mod which includes game play tweaks, so my experience will be different from yours with stats etc.

  14. Paul — using the Reshader settings you sent me way back.

    I just had time for two quick matches on Tactical Defending. It’ll tell you how it went that I had to play the second one on Semi Pro. What I love is how it brings out the individuality in the opposition. Played Wolves and Adama was a beast to deal with. I’ll save the fine details for Friday’s post.

  15. Cool – just wondered! Those pre-season tournament games are usually at night in america or somewhere so the lighting tends to be more sepia orientated, although i removed that in-built night time sepia filter from my game so night matches look more natural.

    Thats what I mean, legacy defending you can just clamp and take the ball, so stats and player individuality is really nerfed with it, with tactical you have to jockey and contain, allowing ‘star’ players to use their abilities, Salah, Mané, Adama etc all rip you a new one if you try and jump in or mistime tackles on tactical, adds so much more to the game than Legacy does.

  16. NG – Imagine it then on World Class. It does give many more options as I could go back on Pro with Tactical Defending with the extra difficulty of climbing up the divisions and take it from there. Lots to consider.

  17. New post up on FIFAFX Blog at 10 am ! 🙂

  18. great post not-Greg, interesting that it is still holding up for you on vanilla gameplay no sliders after all the mods. Tactical defending all the way for me, has a nice feel to it and as Paul points out steers you away from sprint clamping

    One problem I do have with World Class, which has continued onto FIFA19, is that defending seems a bit easy even with tactical defending but goalscoring is too hard, hence 0-0 is my default scoreline. Just looking at the overall stats of my Exeter career mode so far – season 7, 2nd in the Championship having climbed up from league 2 – and 365 games have yielded just 309 goals for, 275 against. Feel a bit sorry for the Exeter fans, not much entertainment

  19. Abbeyhill – my early seasons on World Class on FIFA 19 with Forest were like that, 0-0 or 1-1 was a very regular occurrence, once you build team chemistry and start signing some better players, the stats do make a big difference and you start to get more chances and start to open teams up more.

    I was also using the OS sliders, which IMO made the game better and more realistic and the CPU defences were sometimes caught out of position or fullbacks hadn’t tracked back which led to more goals.

  20. abbeyhill – I’m enjoying vanilla but as soon as the gameplay mod is ready I will be trying that again as it’s marginally slower and a bit more ‘rugged’. As ever these qualities are intangible and not easily quantified, but there’s more of a heavy feel to the modded version than vanilla. Vanilla 8.5-9/Modded 9-9.5 sort of thing.

    And today’s post will contain a video showing my hilarious undefending in early efforts on Tactical. Think it’ll be a long time befre I get anywhere near mastery. But the way it brings out the opposition’s qualities means I will stick with it.

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