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FIFA 21 Career Mode Details Revealed

We finally got to see what EA Sports reserved for Career Mode this year with a new FIFA 21 trailer released earlier today that includes new features like Interactive Sim Match or the new Player Development System.

Interactive Match Sim

The new Interactive Match Sim feature will allow you to visually sim a match and intervene at any point of the match so you can change the course of it if it doesn’t go according to your plans. You will have three match launch options to choose from:

  • Play Match – load into traditional gameplay.
  • Sim Match – launch the new Interactive Match Sim.
  • Quick Sim – instantly jump to the final result of the match.

The Sim Match may take up to 5 minutes to complete but you can jump to the end of match with the Quick Sim option.

In the Sim Match menu you can monitor your team’s and your opponents stats in real-time via these four tabs:

  • Fitness – gives you an idea of which players might run out of Stamina first.
  • Player Ratings – summarizes which players are performing well and which players are struggling.
  • Match Stats – provides an instant snapshot of both teams’ performance.
  • Game Plan – shows the systems the teams have adopted on the field.

The Interactive Match Sim also features audio commentary and stadium atmosphere throughout the simulation.

Player Development & New Growth System

Probably the most welcomed feature by Career Mode fans this year is the ability to finally train your players in others positions thanks to a fully revamped player growth system based on match XP.

The players growth will be determined through XP accumulation that you can choose how to distribute it to their attributes that can improve:

  • Major Attributes
  • Skill Move/Weak Foot ratings
  • Attacking/Defensive Work Rate
  • Attributes that fuel specialization

Training your players in different positions require distributing the XP toward the required conversion attribute and it will take different period of times to complete the switch to a certain position. For example if you wish to convert Trent Alexander-Arnold from RB to RM, it will take little over 7 months, on the other hand if you wish to train him as a CB it will take you nearly three years to complete the conversion!

Conversions can also impact players work rates & skill moves depending on which position you convert them to. Younger players will be naturally easier to convert to other positions while older players can be trained toward a position that helps them conserve their key attributes. This system is also available for Youth Academy players!

Player Sharpness & New Training System

In FIFA 21 Career Mode there will be a new player attribute added called Sharpness that will be identified with a diamond icon in the player’s UI.

This new attribute helps indicate how ready a player or a team is for a match and will either boost or reduce a player’s main attributes before a game. Sharpness ranges from 0 to 100 with 50 being the baseline, anything higher or lower than that number will affect the player attributes accordingly.

This new attribute can be trained in the New Active Training System that introduces new ways of training your players like never before thanks to:

  • 3 distinct training session slots, each focusing on a specific training Drill and specific players.
  • Multiple players can now participate in each Drill, depending on the Drill type, allowing you to involve up to 15 players in each Training Day.
  • Every session consists of diverse Drills focused on 5 specific area of the game: Defense, Passing, Dribbling, Shooting or Set Pieces.
  • Training Days will always be pre-populated with the appropriate Drills and players based on the active Team Sheet.
  • Changing your active Team Sheet will also give you the ability to instantly update the Drill and Player selection for your Training Day.

The difficulty of the drill will influence the match sharpness and fitness of the player!

New Schedule Planning System

In order to keep your team sharpness, morale and fitness balanced throughout the season, in FIFA 21 you will be able to schedule 3 distinct types of activities in your calendar:

  • Training Day – this is focused on improving match Sharpness at the cost of Fitness and Morale (if it’s being overused).
  • Recovery Day – this is focused on regaining the most amount of Fitness for your players, but it also decreases Sharpness the most.
  • Rest Day – regains less Fitness than Recovery Day, but has a smaller negative impact on Sharpness while also boosting Morale a little.

The Monthly Calendar will keep its existing functionalities but will now also surface the activities set in the Weekly Schedule. From here you can also adjust Schedule Rules for your entire Season!

New Transfer Options

The transfer system in FIFA 21 Career Mode has been improved thanks to the following changes:

  • Loan to Buy – this option has been re-added in FIFA 21 after being removed in the past. You can now loan the players you desire first, with the option to make the transfers permanent.
  • AI Player Swap Proposals –  the AI will now make player swap proposals with players of their own. When you attempt to buy a player from another club, they can propose a swap as well, asking for one of your players in return.
  • Contract Renewal Improvements – No more Messi or Mbappe as Free Agents. The AI will now renew the contracts of players based on their squad rank. However they can still become Free Agents in some cases but rarely!

Multiple factors will now influence a player decision when negotiating his contract, like if the offer is coming from a club in the same country where the player is playing at or the current contract length of the player and the contract length that is being offered.

You can also set the Negotiation Strictness before starting a Career Mode save from ‘Loose’ to ‘Strict’. Strict negotiation means that:
– Clubs won’t take offers from a rival club
– Players won’t be interested to move to a lower ranked club
– Players with One Club Player Trait won’t join another team
– You won’t be able to approach players that signed to a club for less than a year
If you go for the ‘Loose’ option, all of the above limits will be off.

Youth Academy Improvements

When starting a new Career Mode save in FIFA 21, the club will already have a youth scout hired and a number of players will already be available in the Youth Academy. The number of players varies based on the importance of the Youth Development rating. If you pre-order FIFA 21 you can also unlock the the ‘Homegrown Talent’ option that will add one player with high potential to your academy. The player will have the same nationality as the club you chose to manage and the news stories of his performance will always link him as a local talent of your club.

As mentioned before the Player Development and New Growth System will be available for Youth Academy players as well. The youth players will train much faster in new positions if you choose to do so. While in the Academy, the young talents develop under good Form at all times, so their growth is sustained at an even pace.

The youth and regen player personality and emotion assignments have been addressed in FIFA 21. This caused issues with how the morale of these players was impacted through Press Conferences, Post-Match Interviews and Conversations.

Moreover you can now send your Youth Scout to countries that previously were unscoutable such as Wales, Ukraine, Serbia, Albania, the Baltics, and more. The database of names to pick from for Youth Players has also increased to over 5000 first names and 8000 last names.

Other Improvements

In FIFA 21 Career Mode the player retirement logic will trigger only if the player is in the final year of their current contract. This will allow older players to push retirement further. Also players will now retire when their are closer to 40!
The Board Objectives will make their requirements more clear! The match attendance and season tickets objectives have been replaced with milestones like reaching a certain amount of wins in a season. When the board will request to play youth players in your first team you will now have up to two season to give them the requested playtime.
The Press Conferences will have less of an impact on a player’s morale. In Pre-Match Press Conferences, only players that are eligible to play will be impacted.
The Financial Takeover can now be customized with the amount of money that you wish to give your club. Details on the gameplay features like Enhanced AI and Competitor Mode that will be applied in Career Mode can be found here.
Unfortunately all these new features will not be available in Player Career Mode as EA confirmed it in this Q&A tweet:

For more in-depth details we recommend checking this Pitch Notes article from the EA Sports.

About Damien

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Founder of FIFA-Infinity.com, Graphic Designer and FIFA Modder in spare time.

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