Following on from my review of Danny Ings IF last week, I was hoping for another Southampton in-form to review this Weekend League, however Nathan Redmond's goal and assist were not deemed worthy of a TOTW card (I'm sure this would be different if he was in a Man U shirt!)
Throughout the week I'd been completing the Santi Cazorla objective with a Korean silver team, and had really enjoyed playing with them. I'd seen a lot of people on r/FIFA saying how they wish there were tournaments with bronze/silver requirements to encourage this play style, and I just thought – fu*k it, I can play weekend league with a silver team right?
Admittedly, whilst completing the Santi objective I had found that the complete lack of Korean Silver 4*SM players absolutely infuriating, as I usually like to have at least one skiller in the team to open up space against cagey opponents. I'd heard rumours of a South Korean from the Premier League, with lightning fast pace, next level shooting and the sort of skill moves I was looking for. This was the man I needed to complete my weekend league.
I went onto the transfer market looking for a Gold South Korean from the Premier League, and couldn't believe my luck I managed to snipe Ki Sung Yueng for only 400 coins! Now my team was complete, a 6300 coin silver fortress with a 400 coin golden jewel at the heart of midfield. It was time to smash the shit out of weekend league.
My first game was admittedly a bit of a lesson. Using a 70 rated team against other 70 rated teams all week for the Santi objective was free-scoring fun for the whole family. Using a 70 rated team against an 85 rated team was free scoring fun for my opponent. Hat-tricks from FB Hernandez AND 2IF Felipe Anderson left me questioning if this was a good idea. Practically every shot against Shin Hwa Yong went sailing into the net. From 8 shots my opponent scored 6 goals, and although I created a number of chances at the other end my strikers seemed to be having the opposite problem.
After that 6-0 thumping I got straight into the next game. The loading screen popped up to show my opponents front 5 of Lukaku, Firminio, Erikssen, IF Willian and UCL Sterling. I was expecting a similar result to the previous game, but this guy turned out to be complete dog shit. Despite scoring his 2 shots on target against a flailing Shin Hwa Yong, he was powerless to stop the terrifying duo of Ki Sung Yueng and Hwang Hee Chan up top. I smashed 3 past Ederson and got the win. Nothing beats the feeling of destroying some shushing dab-factory of a player, than doing it when your whole team costs 2.5x less than his cheapest player.
From this point onwards the results started to trickle in, win one, lose one, win two, lose one. I ended up getting myself up to 12-9 and on course to beat my WL best of 14-11. And then something terrible happened, I don't know if it was the matchmaking with a +3 record, or the beers I had been drinking whilst playing, but I managed to lose 5 games in a row. Nothing went right for me, I couldn't score penalties, couldn't smash in timed finesse shots from 30 yards, I'd completely lost the ability to play FIFA and ended up putting myself to bed at 12-14. Ouch.
I woke up this morning with one goal – to get my Korean players the Gold 3 finish that they deserved – just to context, G3 is my highest ever finish, and although I achieved this with a 76 rated saints team last week – attempting it with a 70 rated South Korean team is a whole new level.
My first game this morning I loaded in against an 83-rated ligue 1 team with Zola up top. This was the kindest the matchmaking had been to me all weekend, apart from that my opponent had Zola (with a hunter) up top. The hunter chemstyle puts all of Zola's shooting stats above 90 and maxes out a couple of them. My sole aim in this game was to crunch Zola whenever he got near the ball, I was racking up the yellow cards but a couple of stray balls got through to him and he finished both of them. Both 180 finesse volleys from outside of the box, off of the inside of the post, without using timed finishing. GREAT. My opponent had been heavy pressing the whole game, and at 2-0 down in the 70th minute I was finally starting to find some space. Flashback Dani Alves basically didn't have a fitness bar anymore, so I spent the rest of the game pumping balls over his head and chasing them down with Hwang, Kim & Lee. All of his defenders and midfielders were practically immobile at this point, allowing me to pass the ball round and claw two back, taking the game to extra time. He brought on a number of attacking midfield options at the start of extra time but this didn't solve his defensive frailty, I went ultra defensive and hit him on the break to win 3-2.
With 3 game left to go I just need one win to hit G3, surely I couldn't mess this up?
And I didn't…. I smashed my next opponent 3-1 bringing me to 14-14, but was having fun and decided to play my last couple of games, even though it wouldn't make a difference to my results (I have never played all of my WL game before!)
The next game I forgot to use a squad fitness item and got absolutely dominated 6-1, but the weekend finished on a high – in my last game I put three first half goals past my opponent, and at half time he quit the game.
Penalty shootouts: 2/1
Top scorer: Hwan Hee Chan (24 goals)
MVP: Ki Sung Yeung (8 goals/8 assists)
Goals for: 53
Goals against: 71
Heaviest Defeat: 6-0
Icons faced: 7
Davison Sanchez's faced: 11
Average team rating faced: 84.4
Rage quits: 3
Using a 73 rated keeper didn't really seem an issue when playing against other silver teams but when playing against top-tier strikers in the Weekend League, it was a real struggle. I conceded 6 goals in 3 games, and in all of those games the keeper let in almost every shot taken, to the point where he was diving out of the way of some of my opponents shots. At the other end I had the complete opposite problem, again I had no problem being clinical with these silver players against silver goalkeepers during the week, but when shooting against the likes of Oblak and Neuer, I often found that my shots would randomly have no power – finesse shots which would normally go sailing into the top corner would randomly trickle off to the side of the goal. It was like there was a forcefield around the goal in some games, and simple tap ins from a few yards out would go miles wide.
tldr: Playing weekend league with a silver team is horrible but rewarding, beating good teams with a shit team is achievable, and feels great. You don't need to spend a lot of money to make this game fun, just find players that you like and challenge yourself to beat people with them!
Thanks for reading
p.s I really enjoyed playing with a "national side" of sorts, and would definitely take recommendations for a nation to try out next weekend league (if the nation comes with a punny team name, even better!)
© Post "Weekend League – Korea Mode" for game FIFA 19.
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