FIFA has got so realistic that last week our Mum walked in on us playing and asked why there was a live match kicking off at 11pm.
Compare the latest instalment of the game to FIFA 97 and it’s hard to understand how ’90s kids coped. But that’s not to say there aren’t a few lessons FIFA 17 could take from the previous generations.
1 Indoor football
Introduced in FIFA 97, the 6-a-side indoor soccer mode allowed you to live out all your indoor footballing needs without the twisted ankles and burnt knees.
It was an absolute free for all, and the ball never went out out of play, which made it incredibly difficult to score, but we spent hours in that little brown stadium.
2 John Motson
Motty’s voice was on the early editions of FIFA, before being replaced by Ally McCoist, Clive Tyldesley, Andy Gray and the duo of Martin Tyler and Alan Smith.
But no one ever came close to matching the soft, dulcet tones of Motson and his sheepskin jacket. Bring the man back! Who else could give us the classic line, “And, like an archaeologist, this keeper’s career is in ruins.”
3 European Dream League
FIFA 99 saw the ‘Road to the World Cup’ mode replaced by a glorious European Dream League.
Where else could you take on the mighty Rosenborg with Juventus, or PSG with Rangers? Okay, so the badges were a bit ropey, and ‘Manchstr U’ weren’t quite up to scratch, but it allowed you to spend a whole season playing European clashes.
4 Classic teams
If you want a blast of nostalgia on the current FIFA and, let’s face it, who doesn’t, the best you can do is the Classix XI.
But FIFA 2000 included a whopping 40 classic teams, featuring the likes of Franz Beckenbauer’s West Germany side and Carlos Alberto’s Brazil team. Fill your nostalgic black and white boots!
5 Adding random teams
Lower league fans are spoiled when it comes to the selection of teams they can pick from on FIFA nowadays. But that hasn’t always been the case.
Port Vale fans got a massive treat on FIFA 2000 when their team was included on the game for the first time. The reason? Vale fan Robbie Williams sung the title song “It’s Only Us” so they snuck into the Rest of the World section. Exotic.
6 R1 tackles
Now we’re not suggesting teaching young kids how to break legs from an early age.
But the hack on FIFA 2001 which allowed you scythe down the opposition at will by holding the R1 key was joyous fun when combined with a virtual Roy Keane. Unfortunately it always resulted in a red card.
7 Off the ball movement
“He does a lot of good work off the ball.”
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Never was this phrase more apt than on FIFA 2004, in which you could control two players at once. It was a hard skill to master but once you’d got it locked down you could spring an offside trap better than Pippo Inzaghi.