Published on by Wookiechew23 14 Comments
Today we'll be looking at the new 96-rated YPOTY Raheem Sterling. The SBC was released on Sunday, and it will cost around 1.25 million, but it does give you 305K worth of packs in return. You can also unlock a 20-game loan for around 18K, so that's a good way to try out the card before deciding whether to drop a small fortune on it or not.
Sterling has some fantastic in-game stats, with near perfect pace, shooting and dribbling, as well as great passing and decent physicality.
I stuck the Finisher chemistry style on him, essentially maxing out his shooting and giving him the strength and aggression boost he needs.
I used Sterling in this squad:
In-Game, I switched to a 4-1-2-1-2(2), with Sterling playing in either of the striker roles or behind them as the CAM.
Here are my stats with Sterling:
Let's take a look at his pros and cons.
Pace: He's as fast as TOTY Mbappe, and that's all I should need to say. He's one of the few players who can still outpace most defenders, and that means he can get in behind with ease.
Finishing: On his right foot, he's going to score anything. Get him into the box, find a foot of space, and let fly. I was very impressed with his ability to score with just normal shots -- no need to time them, finesse them, hit them as low drivens, or any thing else. Just face him towards the goal, power up, and watch him score.
Positioning: Makes great runs, both down the wing and down the middle. He also has a knack of latching onto rebounds, no matter where they are. A real fox-in-the-box.
Finesse Shots: In the post-finesse shot era, Sterling can still bend them in from 25-30 yards. If you time them well, he'll score every time. And even if you don't, he's still got a great chance of scoring.
Shot Power: For a little guy, he's got a hell of a shot. No matter how far he shoots from, it's like a cannon. He blasts them from six yards, he leathers them from thirty. I was really impressed.
Passing: Everything you need in a player. His long passing is only 80, but it was absolutely fine in game. His crossing, short passing and vision were excellent, and he pulled off some fantastic through balls.
Agility and Balance: Perfection. He has 99 in both stats, and it absolute translate in-game. Sterling is so quick on his feet and so nimble that he can weave through an entire defense without you ever having to sprint. It's like we're back in the FIFA 17 dribbling days.
Dribbling and Ball Control: Immaculate. First touch is perfect, the ball is stuck his feet as he dribbles, and his skill moves are perfectly executed.
Stamina: He can run full pelt for a whole 90 minutes without emptying his tank. He's an absolute machine thanks to his.
Skill Moves: Four-star skills are always a great addition, and...
Weak Foot: The biggest issue with this card. With his left foot, he's not going to score from outside the box (which is not good for a right winger). Even inside the box, he has a tendency to miss on his left -- shots don't go on target, or they don't get enough power. He can still score sitters on his left, and I'd say shots inside the box have around a 50-50 chance of going in. First time shots are your best hope when it comes to his left foot.
Aerial Ability: What's the opposite of aerially dominant? Thanks to his custom animations, Sterling kind of runs like a chicken, but unfortunately, he flies like one too. He may have great jumping, but he's so small, he's rendered effectively useless in the air. Against any competent defender, he's not going to win in the air. It is kind of funny to see him leap so furiously, to absolutely no avail.
Composure and Consistency: This is definitely subjective, but to me, there are times when he just doesn't feel like an elite player. He can miss the easiest chances, he messes up 1-on-1s in crucial situations, and he doesn't have those magic moments that you see with TOTYs and Icons. He has games where he destroys the opponents, and then games where it all goes wrong.
Physicality: I'm putting this at the end because for many people, wingers don't have to be strong. However, it's definitely an important stat for me, and despite his 80+ strength with the Finisher chemistry style, his 65 aggression (after the boost), he still feels weak. Neither of these stats translate to his in-game performance. If he gets caught, or he goes shoulder to shoulder with an opponent with even decent strength, he's going to struggle. There are a lot of times when a stronger fullback gets to him, and when that happens, he's pretty much done. He is strong enough to weaker full backs and wingers, but for a 1.2 million coin player, you expect them to hold their own against more opposition.
Overall, this is a really great card that is burdened by a significant price tag. He can do things that very few cards can do, and if you do unlock this card, I have no doubt that he's going to tear it up for you. He's lightning quick, has a phenomenal shot, is superb creatively, and is Messi-esque on the ball. If you love Manchester City or Sterling, or have a bunch of untradeables you can't wait to use, this card could be right for you.
However, IMO, for a card of this price, there are still too many issues. I'm not a fan of dropping so much on a card with a three-star weak foot, or an attacker that can't compete aerially or physically. His consistency and composure are subjective, so I'll leave that up to you. Plus, when his TOTS card drops in a couple of weeks, he's probably going to be at a comparable price or even cheaper (and tradeable!), so I'd recommend waiting until then to try him out.
At the end of the day, my reservations boil down to this -- if Sterling has issues coming up against non-TOTS cards, what's going to happen when he has to face those heavily boosted TOTS defenders? I'm talking about the pacey fullbacks who receive pace boosts, or slow defenders who suddenly have the pace to keep up with him -- when those cards come out, Sterling is going to have even more issues that he has now.
Overall Rating: 9/10 - A phenomenal card. If you do get him, he's going to be incredible for you. However, he's a level slightly below the best TOTY cards and meta-Icons.
Value for Coins: 6/10 - In a couple of weeks, he'll get a TOTS card that will come in at less that 1.2 million. Plus, there will a lot of very capable TOTS wingers for less (looking at you, TOTS Pepe). Definitely get the loan, so you can try him and decide for yourself.