Cristiano Ronaldo’s place in the January’s FIFA 18 Team of the Year (TOTY) could be in serious doubt.
That’s because for the first time ever, the TOTY will be voted for by a carefully curated list of media, athletes and EA Sports FIFA community members.
They’ll be tasked with picking 11 stars to fit into a 4-3-3 formation, from a shortlist of 55 world-class players.
The cover star, who ranks amongst the game’s best forwards, has struggled to emulate his Ballon d’Or winning form in the past few months – although admittedly he’s picked up again recently.
The Portuguese star only has four goals to his name in 13 appearances in La Liga – his lowest strike rate for quite some time.
In the Champions League, he fares slightly better- with nine goals from six appearances.
No one can argue that, for the first part of the year, the Real Madrid star was on fire – but on stats alone, he’s some way behind some other quality players this season.
Tottenham’s Harry Kane, for instance, has netted 50 goals this calendar year – so should definitely be in the conversation.
Elsewhere, Edinson Cavani and City hitman Sergio Aguero have been on fire this year and, on paper, are probably more deserving of that striker spot.
And then there’s Napoli’s Dries Mertens, who has been in sensational form this year and is a real favourite with the FIFA community.
We’re almost certain that Ronaldo’s nemesis, Lionel Messi, La Liga’s top scorer, will be guaranteed a place.
The Argentine has netted 16 goals in 18 La Liga appearances, with 28 from 22 games across all competitions.
So, should Ronaldo fans be worried?
By EA giving power to the gamers and community this year, there’a very good chance the cover star may miss out.
So, who are the Team of the Year nominees?
But it’s not all good news for gamers.
As thousands of you open packs, the market will see price falls on an immense scale, with special TOTY player items available for a limited time in FIFA 18 Ultimate Team and FIFA Mobile.
Here, we’ve pulled together everything else need to know to make the most out of the period. Let’s kick off.
Q: What is the Team of the Year?
A: TOTY is a team of IF players released on a yearly basis. Select players will be rewarded blue In Form cards, based on their real performance on the previous civil year.
Q: When is the Team of the Year released?
A: The final Team of The Year will be announced starting on January 15th.
Q: How will EA Sports reveal the players?
A: Last year, EA started with the goalkeeper before working through the defence, midfield and ending with the strikers.
Q: Just how much of an upgrade will players get?
A: Huge. Nearly every player will get scores well into the 90s, with Cristiano Ronaldo getting a near-perfect 99 score last year.
Just take a look at last year’s team (below) to get an idea.
Q: What is the difference between Team of the Year and Team of the Season?
A: Last year’s TOTY consisted of players who played well during the calendar year, according to the International Federation of Professional Footballers (FIFPro).
The TOTS has nothing to do with the calendar year – but related to players of each league who have played well during the season. They are not chosen by FIFPro members.
There are strong rumours that this year’s TOTY will be voted for by the community – with the FIFA community having a say on who makes the squad.
Q: Will there be a market crash?
A: A crash may be putting it strongly, but there will be certainly be a lot of fluctuation. Some gamers may sell some of their best players to fund pack openings.
Q: How many players are selected for the TOTY?
A: Eleven. The TOTY is made up of 1 goalkeeper, 4 defenders, 3 midfielders and 3 forwards, where each category can contain a player in any position.
Q: How many nominees does the Team of the Year have?
Q: Are TOTWs released in the Team of the Year week?
A: Yes. Team of the Week will still be released every Wednesday.
Q: How easy is to find FIFA 18 TOTY cards in FUT packs?
A: Not easy at all. These cards are extremely rare.
Q: What FUT packs will give me the best chance to find TOTY cards?
A: TOTY players can be found in any pack with rare gold players – but don’t go mad, you’ll be extremely lucky if you find one.
Q: When is the best time to open packs?
A: As soon as possible, as you don’t want to be competing for any TOTY players in the market.
According to fan website FIFAUTEAM, your chances of finding one of these cards are two times higher than in the first two days and three times higher than in the other days.
Q: How much would they cost if I bought them?
A: TOTY cards are eye-wateringly expensive. Ronaldo, for example, cost nearly four million FUT coins at peak price last year.
Everyone will want them, too – so it’s a slog.
Q: Are there any players who made the team last year but will struggle this year?
A: Ronaldo’s place could be in serious doubt.
The FIFA 18 cover star has struggled to emulate his Ballon d’Or winning form in the past few months – although admittedly he’s picked up again recently.
We can’t see Luis Suarez making the cut either – especially given how well Harry Kane and Neymar have played.
Kylian Mbappe could be a wildcard entry too, although he’s probably just going to miss the cut this year.
Q: What players have been nominated this year?
A: Here is the full shortlist of the nominees:
🇮🇹 Gianluigi Buffon, Juventus
🇪🇸 David de Gea, Manchester United
🇨🇷 Keylor Navas, Real Madrid
🇩🇪 Manuel Neuer, FC Bayern München
🇸🇮 Jan Oblak, Atlético Madrid
🇦🇹 David Alaba, FC Bayern München
🇪🇸 Jordi Alba, FC Barcelona
🇧🇷 Dani Alves, Paris Saint-Germain
🇩🇪 Jérôme Boateng, FC Bayern München
🇮🇹 Leonardo Bonucci, Juventus/AC Milan
🇪🇸 Dani Carvajal, Real Madrid
🇮🇹 Giorgio Chiellin, Juventus
🇺🇾 Diego Godín, Atlético Madrid
🇩🇪 Mats Hummels, FC Bayern München
🇩🇪 Phillipp Lahm, FC Bayern München/retired
🇧🇷 David Luiz, Chelsea FC
🇧🇷 Marcelo, Real Madrid
🇦🇷 Javier Mascherano, FC Barcelona
🇵🇹 Pepe, Real Madrid/Besiktaş
🇪🇸 Gerard Piqué, FC Barcelona
🇪🇸 Sergio Ramos, Real Madrid
🇧🇷 Thiago Silva, Paris Saint-Germain
🇫🇷 Samuel Umtiti, FC Barcelona
🇪🇨 Antonio Valencia, Manchester United
🇫🇷 Raphaël Varane, Real Madrid
🇪🇸 Thiago Alcântara, FC Bayern München
🇪🇸 Sergio Busquets, FC Barcelona
🇧🇷 Casemiro, Real Madrid
🇧🇷 Philippe Coutinho, Liverpool FC
🇧🇪 Eden Hazard, Chelsea FC
🇪🇸 Andrés Iniesta, FC Barcelona
🇪🇸 Isco, Real Madrid
🇫🇷 N’Golo Kanté, Chelsea FC
🇩🇪 Toni Kroos, Real Madrid
🇷🇸 Nemanja Matić, Chelsea/Manchester United
🇭🇷 Luka Modrić, Real Madrid
🇩🇪 Mesut Özil, Arsenal FC
🇫🇷 Paul Pogba, Manchester United
🇮🇹 Marco Verratti, Paris Saint-Germain
🇨🇱 Arturo Vidal, FC Bayern München
🇬🇧 Gareth Bale, Real Madrid
🇫🇷 Karim Benzema, Real Madrid
🇺🇾 Edinson Cavani, Paris Saint-Germain
🇦🇷 Paulo Dybala, Juventus
🇫🇷 Antoine Griezmann, Atlético Madrid
🇸🇪 Zlatan Ibrahimović, Manchester United
🇬🇧 Harry Kane, Tottenham Hotspur
🇵🇱 Robert Lewandowski, FC Bayern München
🇧🇪 Romelu Lukaku, Manchester United
🇫🇷 Kylian Mbappé, AS Monaco/Paris Saint-Germain
🇦🇷 Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona
🇧🇷 Neymar JR, Barcelona/Paris Saint-Germain
🇵🇹 Cristiano Ronaldo, Real Madrid
🇨🇱 Alexis Sánchez, Arsenal FC
🇺🇾 Luis Suárez, FC Barcelona
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