It’s that time of the year. To help take your mind off Fiorentina’s questionable mercato, EA Sports is releasing FIFA 21 to the masses this Friday. Putting aside the ethics of the game’s most popular mode being glorified gambling, every Fiorentina player now has a new rating to bemoan! Once again, how much calcio the folks at EA actually watch is called into question. Thanks to Sofifa for making these ratings easy to access.
Still at 76 overall, Fiorentina boast a 76 overall defence, 76 overall midfield, and 77 overall attack. For career mode players, the transfer budget starts at 25 million euros.
The team formation is Guiseppe Iachini’s 3-5-2. Miraculously, the tactics are entirely the same as a year ago despite Vincenzo Montella being long gone. (8/10 players in the box? Beppe? Really?). The team’s domestic prestige stayed the same (6/10), but the international prestige dropped one point (5/10).
Bartłomiej Drągowski- 75
And we start with a doozy. Although Bart has been upgraded two points since last year, EA currently has him as the 25th best goalkeeper in Serie A. Drągowski finished last season with 8 clean sheets, tied for eighth-best in the Serie A. Still with the same rating as Silvio Proto and three ratings below Roma reject Robin Olsen, I can’t decide whether it’s his 76 diving, 74 positioning, or 78 reflexes which offend me the most. Despite being caught in no-man’s-land last Friday, Bart is a fine keeper and deserves to be bumped up a couple of points by EA.
Pietro Terracciano- 71
Terracciano’s rating stays the same, which feels slightly harsh given his performances post-lockdown this past summer. Given the three clean sheets he kept in seven matches, I’d like to see him boosted a point or two.
Federico Brancolini- 53
The 18-year-old third-stringer should be happy just to be in the game. I’d be curious to know if he trusts his virtual abilities enough to start himself when he’s playing FIFA with his friends. I don’t know if I’d have the courage.
Germán Pezzella- 78
Pezzella has been downgraded one rating despite his continued steady presence in the back for Fiorentina. 78 defensive awareness feels very low, but most of his stats seem somewhat accurate. Compared to his fellow 78 overall peers in the Serie A, I’d take him over Stefan Radu or Mattia Caldara any day of the week, so a 79 feels fair to me.
Martín Cáceres- 76
We have reached the first rating where EA is being slightly generous. Cáceres having the same defensive awareness (78) as Pezzella seems like a joke, but maybe the second Sampdoria goal is still on my mind. The Uruguay international is still a solid player, but clearly the weakest link in the back three. A 74 or 75 reflects his current level better.
Lucas Martínez Quarta- 76
If you ever need an easy way to get over Chiesa leaving, just remember that Martínez Quarta has higher potential on FIFA. Jokes aside, 85 potential makes Martínez Quarta the highest-upside player at Fiorentina according to EA. He is clearly one for the present and the future, and I can’t wait to watch him in a purple shirt.
Nikola Milenković- 75
We’ve reached the second-most offensive rating in the entire team. Milenković really started to show his full potential last season, as there are very few defenders of his size with his athleticism and ability on the ball. I want to boost nearly every single stat of the Mountain, from his 70 heading accuracy to his 44 agility, and especially his 78 aggression. Maybe a move to a bigger club will make EA realize Milenković’s talent, but for now, he is underrated. Even his potential declined from 83 to 82. The viola fan in me believes Milenković should be 79 overall, with 87 potential. EA needs to catch up and start watching him.
Igor has been downgraded two points, and still only has 75 potential. While he’s not logged a ton of minutes for Fiorentina, a rating in the high sixties or low seventies seems more justified based on his solid performances. However, I’ll give EA a pass given the small sample size. With more playtime, I’m confident his rating will increase.
Christian Dalle Mura- 60
The primavera captain has a very solid rating for an 18-year-old, even if the 76 potential feels a tad low.
Cristiano Biraghi- 75
Biraghi has been one of Fiorentina’s best players these first few games, but looking through his stats, there isn’t much I strongly disagree with, except for 76 stamina feeling low. Biraghi seems much improved since his time with Antonio Conte, so if he can continue his current form, a 78 seems more justified for a player who started for the Azzurri less than a month ago.
Antonio Barreca- 72
It’s safe to say Biraghi’s new deputy has fallen off these last couple of years, based on the 74 overall and 85 potential he had on Fifa 17. Now Barreca’s overall is 72 and his potential is a meager 76. Hopefully, he turns it around this season.
Pol Lirola- 71
Downgraded three ratings, but I don’t disagree with his actual stats. While Lirola did not have the greatest first year in Florence, the potential in real life clearly exists. The sale of Chiesa could allow him to blossom into one of the better wing-backs in Serie A, and a rating in the high seventies to go with it.
Lorenzo Venuti- 70
Upgraded by one point, Venuti feels spot-on to me. His 24 finishing does feel slightly insulting, given this banger he scored a couple of years back on loan with Benevento. Interesting that Beppe has never tried him on the left over Lirola, as he has a better weak foot (four-star), according to EA.
Giacomo Bonaventura- 80
I can’t say I’ve watched a ton of Bonaventura these past few years, partly due to his injuries and partly due to Milan not being high on my list of life priorities. Jack is rated as the second-best player on Fiorentina by EA, which feels slightly generous, especially in comparison to the other midfielders in the squad. Very confused how he has the same heading accuracy as Milenković.
Sofyan Amrabat- 77
Feels about right for a player who’s had only one good season in a top league. His 78 pace feels a little high, but his 75 vision feels too low. If Amrabat can replicate what he showed in Verona last year for the Viola, I expect a boost at some point this year.
Borja Valero- 77
As a player whose game never relied on athleticism, it makes sense that Il Sindaco maintains such a high rating at the age of 35. His 38 sprint speed may make him unusable in-game, but FIFA has never been able to properly showcase players with his skill set. Curiously he doesn’t seem to be available in Ultimate Team, he may be added in the middle of the year similar to Franck Ribery last year. I can dream of a flashback card at some point this year.
Erick Pulgar- 76
Pulgar has been downgraded two points, and I don’t understand the reasoning. Although his stat sheet from last season may be inflated due to his set-piece ability, Pulgar certainly deserves both better passing and defending stats than his card suggests. 71 free-kick accuracy seems low, as well as his 72 defensive awareness and 80 aggression.
Riccardo Saponara- 75
Eh. The four-star weak foot and skill moves could make Saponara fun to use off the bench in career mode. Similar to last year, his closest comparisons according to Sofifa seem to be wingbacks and/or Brazilian players who don’t actually exist, such as Ronaldo Esler and Guilson Paiva.
Alfred Duncan- 74
The final confusing downgrade of the squad. Duncan has been solid ever since his arrival last January, and he started this year off the right way with a superb performance against Torino. Certainly deserves to be rated closer to 77 or 78. All of his dribbling stats are too low by several points, and his physicality, pace, and passing don’t seem up to standard. Actually, everything seems to be too low. Get on it, EA. 69 strength? 71 balance? 67 sprint speed?
Gaetano Castrovilli- 73
The dumbest rating in the entire Fiorentina squad, and one which severely makes me doubt the amount of Fiorentina EA has watched this past year. Let’s start with the shooting. You’d have to talk to Armando Izzo about Castrovilli’s 68 attacking positioning. 74 vision is shameful, as well as his 74 composure. I’m not saying he is the strongest guy in the world, but 34 strength is embarrassing. All in all, I’d like to meet the people who decided that Marco Benassi and Sebastian Cristoforo (both 74) are better players than him. Even the 81 potential feels too low for a man who has the chance to be an Italy regular for the foreseeable future.
Valentin Eysseric- 73
Same rating as Castrovilli? Next.
Tofol Montiel- 62
Montiel still boasts 76 potential but is lacking in pretty much every important stat on the game. He’d be a player to train early in any career mode. One for the future, both in and out of the game.
Franck Ribery- 81
The highest-rated player in the squad, his downgrade feels like a result of being one year older rather than his actual play. Quality-wise, Ribery has consistently looked like the best player on the field against players who EA deem to be much higher overall. Ribery is not the same player physically anymore, but technically you’d be hard-pressed to find a better player in Serie A. For that reason alone, I feel like an 83 or 84 rating better describes his magic.
Patrick Cutrone- 75
Not much I disagree with except for his 67 stamina and 62 aggression, I do think he is better physically than EA. Although he ended last season well, his career seems to be in a bit of a rut, which his downgrade reflects. Despite his recent lack of playtime, he’s still pretty clearly the best finisher on the team, and his finishing stat (80) reflects that fact.
Christian Kouamé- 75
For a player who is mostly still potential at this point, his rating is another I agree with. His stats feel about right, except for 78 finishing being too high and 55 aggression being too low. His potential at 82 is decent, Fiorentina could use that level of play from him right now.
Dušan Vlahović- 70
If Kouame is mostly potential, Vlahović is almost entirely potential, which his rating reflects. EA doesn’t seem to agree with me on the major strength of Dušan’s game, which is his unnatural athleticism for his height. 55 agility, 48 balance, and 57 acceleration are all far too low. All in all, I think Vlahović is closer to Cutrone and Kouame than his rating suggests, I would bump him up to a 73.
José Callejón- N/A
Unfortunately, Callejón is not yet in EA’s database. Last year his rating was 84, which would be the best on the team. I expect EA to downgrade him simply due to the fact he’s 33, but still expect a rating above 80.
Well, there you have it. I disagree with most ratings, as expected, but let me know which one you think is the worst. EA has failed to get the Serie B license for FIFA 21, making a potential career mode a lot less fun. But, if you do start one, send your roster to us once you win the Serie A. I’d love to see a good Fiorentina team because the one in real life isn’t quite there yet.