FIFA 18 is finally upon us. The latest installment in the FIFA series has been out for almost a month now and is has already taken many hours from the lives of FIFA fans. FIFA 18s Ultimate Team mode is as popular as ever, even more so with the introduction of Squad Battles to go along with the Weekend League.
The Ultimate Team game mode has meant that FIFA and EA Sports, the games developers, have been able to step into the world of esports. Esports aka competitive gaming, has become a global phenomenon over the past several years. With a worldwide population in the hundreds of millions and a global revenue expected to reach over $1 billion within the next few years, forward thinking game developers have all begun to forge an esports scene for their games. The FIFA esports scene is undoubtedly growing. FIFA 17 begun the FIFA franchises journey into esports and FIFA 18 is looking to expand it.
Last year’s FIFA esports tournaments were a success. Two lucky professional FIFA esports athletes scooped $300k between them after winning two of FIFA esports’ standout events; the FIFA Interactive World Cup and the FIFA Ultimate Team Championship Series. Viewers of these events were even able to bet on the outcome of these esports tournaments online such is the popularity of esports.
FIFA, as an esport, has increased the popularity of FIFA Ultimate Team, any player in the world who is good enough has the chance to win big money playing the game. Of course, this means it is imperative that online players build the best Ultimate Team as they can in order to beat other players.
So without further ado, here are the top nine best FIFA 18 Ultimate player cards to pack this year.
The Galactico – Cristiano Ronaldo
After leading his club and country to the Champions League, La Liga, European Super Cup and Euro 2016, it is no wonder that Cristiano Ronaldo is the highest rated player on the newest installment of FIFA. CR7 as he has become commonly known, should be reaching the autumn of his career given that he is now 32 years old, but the Portuguese superstar is still one of the best two players in the world if not the best. Ronaldo scored 42 goals in 46 games last season for his club, Real Madrid whilst his fitness and constant drive to be the best of the best means that he could well a superstar of world football for several more years to come.
The Barcelona maestro – Lionel Messi
What more can be said about Lionel Messi that hasn’t already been said? FIFA 18 has a feature where the player can play as legends – the likes of Ronaldinho and Pele etc – make no mistake about it, Messi will be a legend come FIFA 25, he might even be known as the world’s greatest ever footballer by then. Messi’s FIFA 18 Ultimate Team rating is only bested by his eternal rival Cristiano Ronaldo. Messi and Barcelona’s trophy haul was surprisingly lackluster last season as they won only the Spanish Cup and Spanish Super Cup whilst Messi’s Argentina were again defeated on penalties by Chile in the 2016 Copa America. Despite this, Messi is still one of the most sought after cards on Ultimate Team.
The Brazilian Superstar – Neymar
Neymar became the most expensive ever footballer at the start of this season after his shock $263 million move from Barcelona to PSG. Seemingly keen to step out of Lionel Messi’s shadow, Neymar is undoubtedly one of the best footballers in the world and is set to THE best once Messi and Ronaldo reach the end of their respective careers. Thanks to the aforementioned reasons, the Brazilian goal scorer is one of the best players in FIFA 18. His dribbling and skill abilities are unparalleled and his five-star week foot means he is as much a threat in the penalty area as he is on the wings.
The hitman – Luis Suarez
Arguably the best center forward in world football today, Luis Suarez is a goal-scoring machine in real life as well as electronically. The Uruguayan’s in-game stats are as solid as you will see and this guy will guarantee you goals, goals and more goals. In real life, Suarez was key to Barcelona’s treble winning campaign in 2015.
The Polish Predator – Robert Lewandowski
The tall Polish forward who almost signed for Blackburn Rovers, once upon a time – Robert Lewandowski would give Luis Suarez a run for his money as the world’s best out and out striker. A serial goal scorer, the Polish forward once scored five goals in less than nine minutes whilst playing for his club Bayern Munich. His 91 rating in FIFA 18 means that Lewandowski is the best rated player in the German Bundesliga and the second best rated striker on the whole game (barring legends). Deadly both on the ground and in the air, having Lewandowski in your squad is sure to win you plenty of games.
The German Radar – Toni Kroos
Real Madrid’s silent star now, Toni Kroos has been a key cog in the Real Madrid machine which became the first club ever to retain the Champions League trophy in 2017 following their 2016 success. The German midfielder averaged 90%+ passing stats through last season and has done again so far this season. Toni Kroos is the highest rated central midfielder in FIFA 17, higher rated than his Real Madrid central midfield partner – Luca Modric. Kroos has won everything there is to be won in his career so far, barring the European Championships, despite being just 27 years of age.
El Capitan – Sergio Ramos
The third Real Madrid player to feature on this list, the Real Madrid and Spain captain Sergio Ramos is unquestionably one of the best central defenders in the world. With a goalscoring record to rival some midfielders and strikers, Ramos is the beating heart of his Real Madrid side – the lion of Madrid. The Spaniard has helped lead Real Madrid to three Champions League trophies in the last four seasons. A serial winner, Ramos has won a World Cup trophy as well as two European Championships.
The English Premier League’s Best – Eden Hazard
Constantly linked to footballing royalty clubs such as Real Madrid, Eden Hazard has become one of the best and most exciting players in the world. Although injuries have plagued him over the last few seasons, Hazard is still a key player for Chelsea, the London club lack a certain spark when he is not involved in their starting XI. Any FIFA Ultimate Team player would be thrilled to pack an Eden Hazard.