Match Of The Doomsday

Who misses Match Of The Day? Not the pseudo-MOTD they’ve got on now where they sit around talking about the before-times. Nor the semi-pseudo-MOTD where they show us the before-times. Yes, they used to wear weird shorts. Ha ha.

If we ever do pull out of this doomsday dive and get back to anything like normality, Match Of The Day on at 10.30 on a Saturday evening, showing football highlights of matches that took place that same day, will be a benchmark for measuring how normal things have become.

There’s likely to be a period of no crowds, or limited crowds, at the matches that they show on Match Of The Day – so maybe it’ll be a fuzzy normality benchmark. But a benchmark it’ll be.

In the only real football that’s going on at the moment, I have had a match in my FIFA20 Career Mode with Leeds United that would qualify for ‘first on the bill’ on a hypothetical virtual Match Of The Day.

It was against Manchester City, and I have put together a 3-minute highlights package that is below.

Some context first.I’m holding comfortably in mid-table. I can beat most of the teams below or around me, but I have to focus to do it.

Any relaxation of attention or taking things for granted and I get embarrassingly whupped. My goal difference is the second-worst in the division because of the tendency I have to simply collapse after going a goal or two down.

I need more Football Manager-style nous, of course. In FM, if I go a few goals down and am really getting pummelled by the opposition, I switch tactics to make my team play ultra-defensively and conservatively, like a boxer on the ropes protecting himself with his arms and gloves and just trying to stay upright. Then I’ll try to snatch a goal (or two) after weathering the storm.

In gamepad football games, though, I tend to go all cavalier and gung-ho, an approach that tended to pay off in PES, but in FIFA… no. In FIFA the AI teams punish you hard for pushing hard. It is a lesson I must learn again and again.

The top teams of the Premier League are unbeatable for me at the moment, and they are the ones that inflict the heaviest defeats upon me.

So here is the match. Leeds United vs Manchester City, at New Elland Road. (This was played on Friday evening just before the new kit mod (on show at the top of this post) was applied. Credit to regular blog commenter and FIFAFX maestro, Paul, for those and the special ball mod too.)

Updated: 7th April 2020 — 12:11


  1. A few things stood out to me:
    1) For the first goal I love the way the striker pointed where he wanted the ball played.
    2) What happened to the reticule in the penalty? Did you have a sudden twitch or did the game just move it?
    3) I love the way you stride up the touchline, like a skinny Sean Dyche.
    4) In the build up to the second City goal I like how Bernardo doesn’t play the ball to Jesus when he’s times his run wrong and strays offside.

  2. Chris99 – I did indeed twitch for the penalty. I find the reticule so hard to control and keep still, I’m the same at corners. I do like to plant the reticule over at the edge of the post, as I find that a more central position gives the keeper an easy stop if he ‘guesses’ the right way.

    I toyed with a few ‘nothingy’ highlights for this clip, as can be seen in that aerial hoof that went nowhere, but I cut all but that one in the end. Over the coming weeks I’ll get better at putting together a proper MOTD highlights package of notable matches. As you point out, the level of realism is staggering.

  3. NG – Great result in what seemed like a fairly easy win in the end, I expected a City resurgence and equaliser before you snatched a last minute winner or something.

    Was playing around in Frosty last night, as I updated the game and had to re-do all my adboards and minikit mods too, and found some other settings, so now have a mini FIFAFX logo over the top of players heads instead of the little arrow, and have the FIFAFX logo woven into the goalnets too.

  4. Paul – as ever highlights don’t show the full story. I had probably another 3 minutes’ worth of clips showing Man City attacks and other little moments. I really will step it up next time and do proper highlights, maybe even my own commentary The True Brits-style. I’m semi-working from home and I’ve got two full weeks off soon, which amazingly hasn’t been cancelled.

    One little snippet from the front line. The hospital staff I speak to tell me the spare beds that have been prepared are nowhere near full. The wards are only about 3-quarters full – plenty of Covid patients, as it really is everywhere like a regular flu now – but so far, at least, the tidal wave hasn’t arrived. Combination of good planning and early warning from the Continent leading to a reduced spread here.

  5. NG – Just goes to show how edits can give a false impression.

    What is your exact role within the NHS?

    I’d say we are 2-4 weeks off hitting the peak, and expect the strain on the NHS to be at crumbling point by then, before it starts dwindling down.

    Will take minimum of 4-6 weeks, probably more like 12 weeks before the lockdown effect is represented within the figures, and we need to have a working vacciine by then, as the virus could just re-emerge at any given point, much like flu does every year, but obviously worse.

  6. Paul – I’m a facilities support admin – all the nuts and bolts and various other things. It can be done from home, so we’re taking turns. They’re insisting at least one person be in the office at all times as it’s in the contract, but there’s really no need.

    Vaccine in 18 months would be a good outcome, and even that’s very unlikely. Herd or population immunity is the only real way out of this. Antibody testing is the only way to detect if that is about to happen or has already happened. Like most people (i.e. everyone) I’m semi-convinced my most recent sore throat/cough was ‘it’, but it’d be good to know for sure one way or the other. That would be a good mini-game to play right now, actually: finding somebody who doesn’t think they’ve already had it. Would be tough!

  7. NG – I asked because from my time working in the NHS as a lead senior data anlyst within Surgery, i got to work with all the consultants, clinical coders, project leads etc, wondered if it was anything like that.

    Several of my family had a really nasty flu type virus before xmas, me included, heavy tight chest, wheezy, aches, sore throat, cough, but without any of the usual snottyness of a flu or cold, pretty cnvinced it was COVID19 and that it was going around long before it ‘officially’ was announced, we all said it was the worst semi-cold type thing we’d ever had.

    you can buy private testing kits to determine if you have it, or if you previously had it if you wanna ‘cough up’ £385, pardon the pun.

  8. Paul – I speak to them all in the course of a typical day and so there’s plenty of opportunity to chuck in a casual ‘and how are things going up there?’ so I build up a pretty decent mosaic picture of what’s happening on the ground at regular times, never mind now. The two takeaways right now are: A&E emptied of all but the actual emergencies a few weeks ago and has stayed that way, proving that 80% of people who go there have no need to go there – people are being seen quicker by more motivated and less stressed staff. And the other is that so far the tsunami of patients hasn’t landed in this part of the country at least, and might not – the lockdown might have already done its job. The expectation is for a peak in the next 1-2 weeks. And I know of no one – literally not one single person – who is not almost certain they’ve already had the virus.

  9. 263 confirmed cases in Coventry, although this is always going to be under the actual number.
    And absolutely shows people go to A&E for silly reasons, I once sat in A&E (with ripped ankle tissue – football injury) next to a woman, who waited for 5 hours because she had a stiff calf muscle, incredible.

  10. Paul – the really senior sisters and planners say that they’ve always known such people as your calf muscle woman shouldn’t be there, but once they’re there they can’t be turned away and they have to go through the system, and with enough of those sorts of cases you get the multi-hour waiting times for everyone. And they blame GP surgeries for a lot of it as well – calf muscles etc should be a GP surgery thing at most. I’ve sat with enough people in A&E for 12 hours at a time to feel very strongly that this can never be allowed to go back to how it was. GP surgeries have to go back to how they were when I was growing up – you needed them for something minor, you got seen the same day no matter what.

    I had a ‘broken glass’ sore throat and a bit of a dry cough just last week, which started 2 days after I was in the same room as someone who tested positive a few days later (and is now quite badly ill). So I’m counting myself in the ‘had it and am now cured forever thankee kindly’ gang.

  11. lol not-Greg, good highlights but were you trying to miss that penalty? Those Korean twins behind the goal on the right hand side did not look impressed!

    Pretty certain I’ve not had the virus but am rather envying your shaved head at the moment – my hair grows quickly and is already in a horrible state. Just ordered some clippers off Amazon but not very optimistic about the likely results….

  12. abbeyhill – some good shaving oil first then a thin layer of shaving gel, a Mach3 or similar, followed by post-shave balm. Will give the nearest result you’ll get to the full Lex Luthor. Clippers are for buzzcut-type shaving only.

  13. Absolutely right NG, GP’s round here, or certainly my one, is next to useless.
    You have to ring up, explain to a receptionist whats wrong, they will make an appt for the doctor to to ring you back to discuss it, which could be a day, 2 days, a weeks time, then the doctor will ring and ask you whats wrong, and decide if they need to see you, which again could be weeks, from ringing to getting an appt can take up to 6 weeks, its truly ridiculous.

    And Once you are in the doctors room they dont care, they just want to get you out as quickly as possible with a prescription to hit their prescrip and appt KPI’s, they are in the wrong job.

    Thankfully, I’ve only been to the doctors 5 times in my entire 40 year life, and only ever go when I absolutely have to, one was for what turned out to be a Lingual hernia, and the other was for excruciating stomach ache, which saw me rushed to hospital from the docs surgery for an emergency appendectomy which was about to rupture, one other time was when I was 12 weeks old as a check up, so discounting those 3 times, actually only ever been to the doctors twice in 40 years.

    It’s quite obvious I dot go for the sake of it, and am not a tight calf in A&E type of person, yet I’m penalised when i do need urgent care because of all the fuckwits who consider it a day out and go for any old pathetic reason.

    Im not keen on GP’s as you may tell.

  14. I think your experience Paul is why A and E is so heavily clogged. Same round here – 3 weeks to see a GP at best would be the norm, at which point the problem won’t be the same as you originally had to explain it. Consequently when mini turf got a high temperature as a small fella we would take him to the walk in centre. Then they closed that and referred everyone to A and E. So if you have a minor ailment but you know it needs attention e.g. Antibiotics for bacterial tonsillitis or like mini when he got scarlet fever you end up sitting next to the broken legs from Sunday football, kids with soldiers up their nose, and any car crash victims. There is no attempt to separate severity of problems.

    Abbeyhill – I ditched mine after finding a good Turkish barber. You will end up with a GI cut, or prison yard style at best. I’m simply using product for that Michael corleone look.

    I’ve settled into cm 01/02 now. It’s strange remembering what it can and can’t do – you can bollock a player but not praise him, and the waiting game for responses to transfers is very old pes. The text only match engine gives you so few clues as well – I’ll concede that point to your liking for the game play NG.

  15. Yep, I concur Turf.
    Apart from the frontline NHS/Medical/Hospital staff, I have very minimal respect for GP’s and the NHS, most of them aren’t in the job to care for people, it’s just a living, a wage, and having worked behind the scenes in the NHS I know the attitudes and corner cutting, half measures and poor decisions being made on a daily basis.

    Still have a PS4 copy of FIFA20 in its cellophane, waiting for a happy home, for free if anyone is interested.

  16. Lad I went to uni with retrained from I.T to become a GP in his 30s. He has all the moral fibre of an alley cat, no question it was for the money.

    In all honesty I probably wouldn’t play FIFA for months so if someone else would they should take up your kind offer. I have had pes from you in the past and I can confirm to all chroniclers that it’s not a scam, I haven’t been deluged by cold calls or unsolicited mail, and no heavies arrived expecting a fee.

  17. At one point, the NHS was apparently an exemplary model for other countries. I guess it was gutted during the 1980s.

  18. Meanwhile, I’m really growing to love FIFA 19 and beginning to get a few more goals too, which definitely helps. I’m starting to think that Paul was right in suggesting that FIFA hasn’t just had the edge over PES in terms of presentation in recent years but has also been arguably better on the field.

  19. Well with everyone saying we can’t emerge from this with the same sort of mistakes in place (such as GP surgeries passing all the work they don;t want to do to A&E depts), let’s just see if it’s borne out by reality. My local GP surgery must be one of the last ones in the country where you can ring up and get an appointment the same day. They don’t like it, but they’ll do it. That should be the bare minimum standard for all. THat would make GP surgeries the new A&E though… already a long wait would become a LONG wait. As ever, what’s needed is more money, more resources, etc, and we’re about to enter a depression or similar.

    Uncle Turf – have a look around the CM0102 forums for a guide on what the text matches ‘mean’ at different points. There is a way they have of presenting the information that does the same job as the 3d match engine. There’s a key somewhere online.

  20. If one good thing can come out of this it will hopefully be ploughing more money into the NHS rather than hitting it with cuts all the time.

    New and slightly different FIFAFX post up at 10am

  21. Paul – viewing now.

  22. I must be that person. Before Christmas I had a cold which lasted only 3/4 days but was no more than a standard cold and that was that. Have been in good health since.

  23. Good stuff Lloyd. What settings are you using? Manual passing?

  24. Congrats Lloyd – some tidy finishes in there.

  25. Semi passing, professional. Cheers Paul. Proper nail-biting stuff and a proper trophy at the end. Boom!!

  26. Lloyd – just caught up on your vid, a very nice set of goals with some decent mid-rangers… where are the Lloyd boomers?! You’ll have seen me bagging quite a few, they are definitely possible in FIFA20, but it DOES seem as if they’ve made it so only higher-rated players can get them. In my Cambridge save I never even got close. So you might be a few transfer windows away from having a player capable of doing the ‘boom’ thing.

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