It is virtually every young footballer’s dream to make it as a pro.
But once you make it as a pro, there’s one moment that holds a special place in their hearts – the first time they appear on FIFA.
And while the Marcus Rashford’s of this world might enter the game on a tidy 76 rating, there’s a few that lag a little bit behind.
One of those players in question is Leyton Orient goalkeeper Sam Sargeant.
The 19-year-old has the dubious honour of being the joint worst rated player on FIFA 17, with the 19-year-old receiving a mere 45 rating for this year’s game.
Dream Team caught up with the keeper, who graciously accepted that while the rating is slightly undesirable, being on the game itself is special enough.
“You grow up as a kid and you want to be on these games, so even though my rating is dreadful, it’s good to see my face there on the FUT card,” Sargeant said.
“The joint lowest rated on the game? I’ll claim that as a trophy. The first thought after seeing my card was ‘Wow, I’m actually on the game.’
“Then I looked at my stats and was like, ‘Oh, they’ve been a bit harsh here, no-one’s going to use me in the game except for myself!”
He continued: “To be fair, I haven’t even used myself on the game. I’m too scared, I can’t be losing games on Ultimate Team because of my own card.
“But the rating wasn’t a massive issue for me because it was just being on it that mattered.”
Players’ ratings are a big deal for those in the professional realm. One only has to see the way Dele Alli and Harry Kane act when guessing their ratings to know how seriously some of the world’s best players take it.
So when Orient’s ratings were revealed for the first time to Sargeant and his team-mates, he instantly knew he could be on the wrong end of changing room chat.
“The lads at football still give me stick about it now, but that’s all part and parcel of the changing room banter – I laugh along with them because I can see why they’re laughing.“But my schoolmates have all said about how incredible it is that I’m just on the game itself. I’ve got a younger brother and all his mates have bought me on the game and got excited about the fact I was on the game.”
The goalkeeper, who was part of an England training camp alongside some of the country’s best stoppers earliest this year, said that one of the first things he did when he got the new game was something we could all relate to.
Sargeant said: “The first thing I did on Ultimate Team was buy myself on the transfer market – I’m only 45 rated so I was really cheap, so it was easy to pick myself up.
“I’m just sitting in My Club at the moment, with not a game to my name, but when I build the confidence up I might put myself on.
“Last year when I was first on it, just on Career Mode, I was so excited to be on it that I made a Manager Mode career mode as Orient every single opportunity I had I trained myself up and I got up to an 87 rated – the graft was unreal but I was that excited to be on it.
“Last year I got added in but I didn’t have my face on there, this year was the first year I was on Ultimate Team so it was special for me because that’s the main game mode I play, so to see yourself on it is quite surreal.”
While Sargeant has enjoyed success in real life on the pitch with the O’s, playing three times this season for the East London club, he has a very simple message to the creators of FIFA 17, EA Sports.
“Please make my rating higher! I don’t want to sound big time, but if you see fit or you get the opportunity to give my stats a little bit of a boost, that would be very much appreciated.”
Come on EA Sports, do the right thing.
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