Many players can’t manage to secure wins because they lack the defensive skills required in FIFA.
Accept it or not, attacking part is easier as you get multiple chances to score. If you miss one, you can create another. However, when it comes to defending, a slightest of mistakes can punish you hard, especially during tough encounters.
FIFA 14 Defending
There are many things to keep in mind while defending, and if you are inconsistent, the results can be disastrous. You might know a few tricks about defending, but if you want to get better in FIFA 14, I will recommend that you read the following points having tips about how to be a better defender.
In earlier FIFA games (2007,08,09) tackling was easier when you could just survive by keeping the standing tackle button pressed. But now, it’s a whole different mechanism. You must press the tackle button at the right time if you want to win the ball.
We all know that it’s quite a risky thing to do as if you miss time it, it will not only increase the risk of conceding fee-kicks, penalties; it can also give extra space to the opponent player who can be dangerous.
So yes, don’t use the standing tackles unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Sliding Tackles are even riskier than the standing tackles, but they have their use. I have seen some players using the quite effectively. They will be beneficial to you if you can predict the movements of other players or the opponents just wants to dribble at any point. Just keep in mind that you should not try them often in the box.
Sliding tackles are usually used to intercept the shoots.
If a striker has broken through your defense, and you have a defender on the side (not exactly behind), and you know that the opponent is going to shoot, you can use the sliding tackle to block it but again, if you miss time it, it will result into a penalty or a red or even both.
Sliding tackle from behind is almost unforgivable be the referees in FIFA so don’t do that.
How to Contain
The contain button lets you control the players in an effective manner. It’s a good method to keep the ball contained with leaving too many gaps.
Like I said earlier, don’t tackle unless it’s absolutely necessary. Using the contain button, you can get close to the player’s body, and even if you don’t press the tackle button, you will be able to win the ball (I call it the auto-tackle) depending on your player’s stats.
Simple contain, however, has a loophole and if your opponent is a good dribbler, he can punish you only stick to contain.
Like FIFA 13, FIFA 14 will also allow you to call in the second player to apply extra pressure. It’s a risky technique, but you can use it tactically. When you call in the second player (AI controlled), try to be at a different position with your player so to intercept any expected passes.
If both of your players are focusing on the player with the ball, it will leave gaps, and if you are beaten by a skilled move, your defense can be wide open. Second contain can apply good pressure, but if you’re leaving too many gaps open by using it, avoid it.
It can be a better technique than just using contain as you can adjust your distance from the opponent and hence avoid the simple dodges. Sometimes, the opponent will execute premature dribble, and you would easily be able to recover the ball by this method. So yes, If contain isn’t good enough, try mixing it up with Jockeying.
When to Commit and When Not to
It’s a game of patience. You shouldn’t be pressing any tackle button till the last. If you are one on one ore even two on one, try to execute a tackle as most of the time, opponent tries to dodge the final players to make sure that the goal is secured.
If you don’t commit your final players, you will notice that it will also give your other defenders time to recover, and you will end up defying the attack.
This of course will highly depend on the situation your are in. If the striker has a perfect angle towards the goal, then committing a tackle will be the only choice. You can also try to block the ball with the body, but that has its own risks as sometimes fast strikers tend to overshadow the defenders.
You can also try to pressurize the striker by pushing and shoving if you are behind to disturb the balance of the opponent’s player. Some players call it risky, but I find it quite effective.
If you don’t overdo it (practice a bit, and you will realize the limit), you can make simplest of shots go off the target. However, again, there are still chances of conceding free kicks and penalties.
You can use it in the safer areas to win or intercept the balls. In the box, you can mix the slight pushing and shoving with the keeper charge to pressurize the opponent. Most of the times, it works great.
How to Deal with 1-2 Plays
They are dangerous, especially when opposition has players like Ronaldo and Benzema up front.
The basic thing to do is don’t follow the ball, follow the player. What I do is when a player is trying to pull off a 1-2, I just switch my cursor to the other player and let AI handle the running player.
Most of the times, they don’t get enough space to get through. You can also opt to follow the running player manually bad there are more chances of error this way. Keep in mind that if you miss time a tackle during a 1-2, you will end up regretting it badly so avoid it.
How to Deal with the Aerial Through Balls
It’s another tricky situation for the defenders. The best way to defend the aerial through balls is to not to tackle or do a header until the ball is in control of striker. Premature tackles or headers can end up giving more freedom to the striker.
Some players think that a back header is a bad option, but it really isn’t. Instead of being over-run by the attacker, you can give it back to the keeper, and if you don’t panic, you will easily be able to clear the ball or even retain possession.
Don’t Use the Long Goal Kicks
Many players tend to use the long goal kicks and end up loosing possession or even conceding a goal based on the counter attack.
If you are afraid that by a short pass, your possession will be gone, you shouldn’t as there are different methods of delivering safe short passes. First, you can choose to pass the ball to your RB or LB which are usually in safe positions. If the opponent is moving in that direction, change the position to the opposite.
It may sound difficult but once you are used to it, you will be able to avoid useless counters from the headers after the goal kicks.
Positioning is Important
Switching markers between different players may sound unimportant, but actually, it plays an integral role in any build-up.
If you just use the wild switching, it will leave needless open spaces in your defense, and you will concede more goals. You should try keeping your center backs for the last as if you use them aggressively, and they get dodged, you will be in a big trouble.
Patience is the Key in Defending
You might have learned it already from the above-mentioned points, but I want to lay more emphasis on it while defending. It’s better to wait than committing a pre-mature tackle. Regardless of how much annoying your opponent is, don’t get reckless if you want to keep the goals to a minimum.