September means many things. The weather is colder, the sun is going down earlier, people are wearing jumpers again and Netflix is taking a battering. Oh, and of course, it’s the month where we’re £50 worse off because the inevitable Fifa purchase. That’s right, Fifa 20 is out and we’re going to be assessing Cardiff’s player ratings in great detail.
The other day, I was discussing the Fifa franchise with one of my mates. We both play Fifa every year religiously. Personally, I love a good career mode whereas my friend, and I’m sure so do many of you, plough the fields of Ultimate Team all year.
Whilst discussing the upcoming release my friend summarised Fifa so perfectly; its like a loaf of bread. Confused? Well, let me explain. You buy a loaf of bread and the only reason you replace it so quickly – and maybe before you’re even done with it – is because it expired. It has passed on. This Fifa is no more! It has ceased to be! Just like your loaf of bread, you find yourself purchasing the latest EA Sports offering simply because it’s what you’re supposed to do.
There’s nothing worse than going around someone’s house and they challenge you at Fifa, you excitedly accept their challenge and find out they’re still playing Fifa 2013. Those people are dangerous. Stay away from them. You find yourself preferring to sit there doing nothing than even think about playing an expired Fifa game, just like you’d rather not eat a mouldy ham and cheese sandwich. This all makes sense.
Anyway, Cardiff’s player ratings. Let’s start with the Goalkeepers:
Etheridge: It shows how vital Neil Etheridge is. He gets relegated and gets a +3 rating change. Etheridge proved to be a very competent Premier League goalkeeper last season so I’d argue he should be nearer that 80 mark. At least he’s got that gold. VFTN rating: 77
Smithies: The out of favour goalkeeper takes a -1 hit this year and rightly so. He had nothing to do over the last twelve months. VFTN rating: 70
Day: Day had a very impressive season with Newport last term, and that’s been repaid not only by stepping up two divisions but also a +3 rating difference. It’s a good day for Day.
Bamba: Our only rare gold card. The loveliest man to ever play for Cardiff only received a +1 rating difference following last year, but you could argue this is good for someone who’s 34, but before his injury he fitted in comfortably to the Premier League. VFTN Rating: 77
Morrison: EA has done the dirty on our skipper here. He stays the same for Fifa 20 after a competent season in the Premier League. VFTN Rating: 76
Flint: Just look at that pace. I mean, they’ve got that right and, to be fair, Flint had an absolute howler at the Riverside last year so a -2 drop in rating is probably fair.
Bennett: Arguably Cardiff’s best left-back for a very, very long time Joe Bennett has a measly +1 rating difference this year after being superb last season in the Premier League. I can only feel that Bennett should be higher. VFTN Rating: 76
Richards: I agree.
Peltier: Right, I’m not having this. I’m writing a strongly worded letter to EA Sports because Lee Peltier has been absolutely shafted left, right and centre with his 68 rating. They have given him a -1 rating difference! He came in last season and surpassed all of our expectations and has proved to be a superbly consistent right-back for us. VFTN Rating: 73
Nelson: One of Warnock’s summer signings comes into us with a less than exciting 66 rating. Haven’t seen a lot of Nelson but that seems pretty accurate at this stage in time.
Connolly & Coxe: I agree.
Ralls: He wasn’t outstanding last year, but he came into our side and made a bit of a difference last season in the Premier League. His score stays the same which pretty much proves that EA Sports just doesn’t watch football outside of the top 4. VFTN Rating: 77
Hoilett: Capable of the absolutely unexpected, Hoilett is a game-changer. He scored a couple of worldes last season including that peach against Wolves. He somehow keeps his astronomic pace stats whereas we all know he’s much more of a dribbler than a pace merchant. VFTN rating: 73
Vaulks: Our resident Welshman climbs the Fifa ratings this year with an impressive +4 rating swing after an incredible season at Rotherham. Perhaps his shooting stats could be better to match the goals he scored last year. VFTN Rating: Agree
Pack: Over the last few games Pack has seen himself finally climb out of the 60 zone and has a +1 player rating this year to keep this run up. VFTN Rating: Agree
Mendez-Laing: We were all shocked when Mendez turned out to be a handy Premier League winger. All the talk about Alexander-Arnold being the best right-back in the world but he couldn’t cope with our double-barrelled skill merchant. He has a +1 rating increase this year which, for me, is very underwhelming. His dribbling is too low and his pace should be nearer the 90 mark. VFTN Rating: 75
Murphy: Outside of Fifa, Murphy seems to be a player who divides opinion at the moment. The argument is surrounding him dribbling with the ball far too much causing him to be selfish, so you’d think his dribbling stat would be higher than 75 this year! His rating is harsh as I believe Murphy has the tools to be one of our best ever wingers. VFTN Rating: 76
Tomlin: What I find completely bemusing is that Tomlin’s highest ever Fifa rating is 72. This year, FIFA decided to be even more ludicrous and give him a below 70 rating. I understand he went off the radar for a bit, but class is permanent and its something of which Tomlin oozes. I went a bit deeper with this one as I was so offended on behalf of Tomlin and I saw his ball control is 71, his vision is 72 and is short passing has been deemed as just 69 out of a 100. Its enough to make you cry. VFTN Rating: 74
Bacuna: His rating stays the same. In the time between the last release Bacuna has played in the Championship twice and the Premier League as well. His pace stat is rather inflated from what I’ve seen and although a lot of Cardiff fans were too quick to jump on his back at the start of the season he’s proven to be a handy replacement to Gunnarsson. VFTN Rating: 70
Whyte: Another player Cardiff fans were too quick to write off we now find he’s already a cult figure due to his insane work ethic. Oxford were gutted to see him go and we’re beginning to see why. Its clear Fifa don’t do a lot of research in the lower leagues as not only is his rating harsh but stamina is rated at 60 which is honestly made me so irrationally angry I don’t know if I can continue writing this article. VFTN Rating: 69 (Stamina rating: 90)
Paterson: Can someone please explain to me how Paterson keeps retaining his pace stats? Anyway, FUThead gave Paterson a ‘Beast Rating’ of 83 which pretty much means his physical attributes are near insane: Jumping rating 93; Stamina rating 89; Strength rating 85 and his Aggression is rated at 85.Its Paterson’s highest ever overall rating with a +2 rating increase and rightly so. VFTN Rating: Agree.
Glatzel: Our marque summer signing has the highest rating increase of the lot with a +6 rating swing and rightly so after an impressive season with Heidenheim. After his hat-trick against Bayern he netted himself a MOTM in-form card last season as well. His only outstanding stat this season is his strength but his finishing is 76 which, for a Championship striker, is very handy. VFTN Rating: Agree.
Madine: I can only feel that Madine will never do anything of note for Cardiff and needs to find his path somewhere else. He done alright for Sheffield United last season but deserves that below 70 rating.
Ward: It’s a real shame what happened with Ward last season. He looked like a breath of fresh air and put in a hell of a performance against Arsenal at home before his injury. He’s one of those strikers who will never be fun to play with as he lacks pace and skill, but he’s definitely better than a 68 on his day. VFTN Rating: 70
Bogle: I cannot fathom how Fifa have deemed Bogle’s finishing as just 67 after his history of scoring goals. His strength is 79 which, if you’ve ever laid eyes on Bogle, is completely insane. His rating, however, is quite accurate for the reason I haven’t seen anything from him to tell me he’s above the 70 mark. VFTN Rating: 68
Vassell: After a disappointing season with Birmingham last year Vassell will be pleasantly surprised to see his rating increased by +1. His pace stats are very pleasing for those Fifa players that like playing with a rapid striker, and I can only feel his rating is completely fair at this point.
Now go enjoy your loaf of bread!