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FIFA 2020: FC Dallas play through, start of the Regular Season

The regular season in England finally gets underway. Welcome to Episode 4!

Welcome to Episode 4 of the FC Dallas FIFA 20 Play through.

In Episode 1, we discussed all the preparations that needed to to be made as we moved FC Dallas to the English pyramid.

In Episode 2, we had a very busy Day 1. Implementing many of the decisions made in the previous episode.

In Episode 3, we partook in the Preseason Friendly Tournament, won it, and made some roster moves.

Note: This is a Clean Play Through. This means no shenanigans are allowed at all, and we’ll have to roll with the punches as they land.

First day of the Month

As stated in our first episode, a scout was sent out with the Future Star perk. The scout returns with a high potential youth, who should hopefully help out the roster right away.

Neves is a solid addition, as he’ll grow fast enough to challenge for rotational starts by mid season. I would have liked a GK, back line help, or at least a higher rated player, but his solid pace and balance means he’ll be on the team for a long time.

Tips & Tricks #1: You can actually use the FIFA Skip Scam on the Future Star perk. You simply save your game before the end of the month. You skip forward to the first day of the month and immediately promote the player brought in by the youth scout. You do this so you can verify that he doesn’t just look like a good player, but actually is a good player. If you don’t like what you see in the player, you simply exit the game, reload, and do it all again and again until you get a player you like.

International Call ups - Jesus Ferreira (US) & Clayton Lewis (NZ)

These two call ups will hurt way more than you think. Ferreira has some of the best stamina on the team. He can start one match and still be able to sub in on short rest.

Michael Barrios - Two loan offers arrive for the best player on the team, so it’s time to add the player that will replace Barrios while he’s off on loan. In this case, we add two players:

Valery comes from Girona FC for $1.8 million + 5% + Twumasi.

Connor McLennan comes from Aberdeen for $1.65 million + 1% + John Nelson.

Both players have excellent growth potential of 80 and can play multiple spots. Valery in particular has the ability to play right back, where depth is severely lacking. Barrios was still on the roster at the time of their signing, so both players agreed to a Rotation Contract over five years on a $3.3k weekly salary...which makes them both amazing deals now and even more so in the future.

Barrios joins Galatasaray on loan, picking them over Tigres UANL.

The first match of the regular season finally arrives, and it’s a complete route.

FC Dallas 5 Plymouth Argyle 0 - Picault comes off the bench and scores a brace.

The three youth scouts send me their first reports. The good news is that I get a 63 rated midfielder. The bad news is that the kid is 15 years old, and can not be promoted. I actually sign a second 15 year old to the academy. There are no players worth signing to my very thin roster.

Tips & Tricks #2: One of the best known FIFA Skip Scams, is to send your three youth scouts out on three separate dates (preferably several days apart). This way you save the game prior to the arrival of your youth scout, and if you don’t find a youth player worth signing to the academy, then you simply reload the game and do it again until you find a good player to sign. This method is extremely time consuming, yet so effective that it can completely break your play through.

We receive loan offers for Matt Hedges and Santiago Mosquera. So it’s time to add players:

Nathan Ferguson comes from West Bromwich Albion for $1.7 million.

Nathan Wood comes from Middlesbrough for $500k.

Rekeem Harper comes from West Bromwhich Alblion for $1.7 million + 5%

Ferguson can play anywhere in the back line and defensive mid but is being added specifically to start at center back this season (Hedges replacement). Ferguson has some serious liabilities that can be exploited by Championship level teams, such as his height and strength are major liabilities at center back, and his speed is a liability at either fullback spot. That’s a problem for the future, because at the League Two and League One levels, Ferguson will dominate.

Wood is one of the best known cheap FIFA prospects and a must own for any play through. His speed means he can play anywhere on the back line, and he should be ready to push for serious starting minutes (at this level) by mid season.

Harper is one of the most versatile players around. He will be able to play every position (at this level) other than GK. His best spots are actually anywhere in the midfield, and he’ll get a ton of minutes there. All three new players have potentials slightly above 80.

Matt Hedges is loaned out to Al Hilal and Mosquera is loaned out CD Vinazur.

Bressan is on his final contract year, so his contract is renegotiated to a Crucial Contract.

The team now enters a brutal stretch, where we will have to play nine matches in a span of 29 days (stretching into next month). I say brutal, because we are playing all the matches without any skips. Star players will need to have their minutes monitored, and you need rotation, rotation, rotation.

Tips & Tricks #3, #4, and #5: Skipping a match is only half as taxing for your players, as playing the match. Playing a match will require the average player rest for an entire week to regain full strength, if they played the full 90 minutes.

The high stamina players (80+ stamina) can start back to back short rest matches, provided they don’t play the full 90 minutes. If you lock on to a player for an entire match (like I will be doing), that player will be taxed the most, and he will not be capable of playing matches on short rest.

Warning: consistently fielding players who are less than 100% will greatly increase the possibility of them suffering injuries. Injuries in a clean play through, where you are not allowed to alter serious events (like long term injuries) by employing tricks can seriously hamper your season and can even possibly derail it.

The brutal stretch begins;

Oldham Athletic 0 FC Dallas 4 - Cobra with a hat trick.

Carabao Cup - FC Dallas 3 Sunderland 0 - a match that was’t decided til the final minutes.

FC Dallas 1 Walsall 0 - Acosta with a last minute winner.

FC Dallas 3 Crawley Town 0

Newport County 0 FC Dallas 3

Carabao Cup - FC Dallas 1 Fulham - Cobra with the late winner.

FC Dallas 0 Bradford City 1 - The unbeaten streak finally ends on the last day of the month, as FCD loses a battle of the unbeatens. FCD out played and out shot Bradford City by a two to one margin, but their GK played lights out. This loss highlights the issue with playing so many matches on short rest, as there are simply no difference makers coming off the bench, only players who can give you minutes off the bench without screwing up.

No further players are signed, or moved, as the first Transfer Window comes to an end. I simply could not find any bargain players, and opt to save my remaining $5 million dollars for the summer Transfer Window.

Here is the roster that will have to carry the team until mid season:

The lack of back line depth is a serious liability and I have no back up GK (for now).

Let me know your thoughts, comments, criticisms, questions on this play through. Feel free to add any tips and tricks I failed to mention within the discussed portion of this episode.

See you next time, for Episode 5: First half of the season.