What a weekend that was. The long-awaited first peek at PES2010 appeared in a PSM3 magazine article. It wasn’t the most encouraging article in the world, it has to be said. It kicked off the most intense weekend of activity across the PES forums since… Since last year, actually. Why, PES? Why can things never be simple and straightforward with you any more? Why can’t you just be routinely great every year, as before? Why can’t it just be like 2004 again?
In Wednesday’s post, I’ll kick through the ashes and doubtless end up looking on the bright side. There really is a long way to go before I’m ready to turn my back on new Pro Evolution Soccer games. I still have a crazy hope that just won’t die.
For today, though, it’s a FIFA09 goals post. Perhaps this is very appropriate. If the sum of all fears comes to pass, FIFA and I will be spending a lot of time in one another’s company in the months and years to come.
I’ve assembled three goals from a single session played on Saturday morning in my Manager Mode career. Before I started the session, I’d made up my mind to save every half-decent goal I scored. There were four goals, but I messed up one of the uploads and only saved the celebration and subsequent kick-off. You can see loads of those kinds of cock-ups at any one time on EA Sportsworld. Now I’ve done one too.
(NB: All goals scored using my usual controls set-up, which features semi-assisted shooting.)
First up is a rare dribble. It’s not rare because it’s Maradona-esque (it’s not). The only rare thing about it is that it’s a dribble, by me. Seasoned dribblers may smile indulgently, but this was a different kind of goal for me and I enjoyed it.
I got the ball with Pavlyuchenko and just headed for goal (laying off the sprint button). Big Pav is my favourite striker in either of the next-gen FIFAs. I really rate him. He’s got the lot: strength, height, speed, skill. He’s the Schwarz of FIFA09 for me.
Next up is a fairly standard shot with my skilful Brazilian midfielder—who goes by the singular name of Joao Luis Locke. This was notable for being outside the box, and being driven quite hard and low. All three (outside of the box, hard, low) are tricky to pull off in FIFA09:
And now finally—a goal from ‘me’. Way back in November or thereabouts, I set up a Be A Pro career. I only played a few games of it. The player I created, ‘not-Greg’, was allowed to join Coventry City at the start of this Manager Mode career. ‘I’ have cheerfully played in the first team, in various midfield berths, ever since. I’ve got pretty good too. Arsenal offered to buy me for £4m in the last transfer window.
This season I’ve moved myself back to central midfield after a few seasons out wide. I’ve scored a few goals. This goal was scored from a lay-off from a free kick. I’ve kind of specialised in these goals over the months of FIFA09:
The opponents in that match were Bayern Munich. It was a must-win final group match in the Champions League-equivalent. I won the match 3-0, but got knocked out anyway when the other result didn’t go my way.
I’ll probably only play Manager Mode until I win the Treble—League, Cup, European Cup—with my Coventry City team. I could have a team of galacticos if I wanted them. But I’m sticking with my existing squad. Pavlyuchenko and Bojan up front. Djemba Djemba and ‘not-Greg’ in the centre of midfield. A couple of bog-standard wingers on the flanks. Some journeymen central defenders. Lahm at right back. A 31-year-old Ashley Cole at left back. A good goalkeeper.
That’s the peculiar thing about Manager Mode: the lack of immersion. I’m playing and enjoying Manager Mode, but I don’t really care about my team (Pavlyuchenko excepted). In Master League I’d know all my players’ names. Sitting here now, I can’t remember my Manager Mode goalkeeper’s name, and I’ve had him for a few seasons. He’s pretty good too, a Casillas-type who’s rated 85 overall. Not the tallest, but a great shot-stopper. Manager Mode—and next-gen FIFA—won’t have really, really arrived for me until I know all my players’ names without trying to remember them. FIFA10, I await your pleasure…