Every year, Fifa players groan about EA Sport’s lack of development in their game – especially career mode. But is this the year that Fifa will finally rival football manager?

With the release of FIFA 21 Beta mode, we can now compare the two games under three different sections: Match simulation/ gameplay, transfers/ player development and schedule planning/ training.

Match Simulation/ gameplay 

One of the areas of Career mode gameplay that EA have really advanced is match simulation. Where before, when simulating a game, the 90 minutes would last about 5 seconds, now there is the option to change tactics, make your own substitutions and control the game.

But how does this compare to Football Manager? It’s extremely unlikely that EA will add the amount of detail and options to the team management during gameplay that FM has. On top of this, FM simulation has better graphics and visual effects. However, Fifa also has the option to play the game manually, and because of this, I think that Fifa may be able to rival FM in this area of the games.

Fifa simulation screen.

Transfers/ player development 

A couple of years ago, Fifa added the realistic view of transfer negotiations between club representatives and also with players’ agents. Despite this, the real criticism of the negotiations was the lack of different options e.g loan to buy. However, yet again Fifa have made improvements, with that specific option set to be implemented into the game.

Another big development is the addition of advanced player development in Fifa. While before this was never an option, now you can change the positions of players. Despite this, FM still boasts the superior options under this section. Not only can you develop players to play different positions, you can also change what type of player they are e.g Ball winning midfielder to Deep-lying playmaker. Another option that FM contains is the opportunity for managers to ask experienced veterans to mentor younger prospects. FM also gives you the option to privately or publicly praise, discuss or criticise players.

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FM player development.

Schedule planning/ training

This year, Fifa have introduced a new option to the ‘Calendar’ section. You can now plan training sessions and rest days – with these affecting player morale and energy levels. There is also interesting improvements to the planning section of training sessions. These additions will make the game mode feel a lot more realistic, which may well mean that it will challenge FM on that front!

Fifa calendar/ planning section.

I think everyone can agree that Fifa’s eventual improvements of Career mode have been a long time coming, and it looks like they’ve done a good job. The added options will allow players to really experience the job of a real life coach – just like FM.

If there is ever going to be a year that you buy a copy of Fifa to play career mode, this is it. But don’t get me wrong, even with all these improvements, it’s going to take a lot more for EA to get their game to Football managers‘ level.

Visit this page for more information on FIFA’s developments.