Despite it still feeling like mid March, 2020 is slowly approaching October and a brand new FIFA game with a long awaited Career Mode overhaul.
With this popular game mode being neglected by EA over the last few years, it is a huge relief to wannabe managers everywhere that Career Mode is finally being given the attention it deserves.
Whether you love the challenge of taking a football league minnow all the way to the Champions League or prefer taking control of the big sides with their bottomless pockets; there’s a Career Mode team for you.
Here are nine of the best English teams to start your journey with on FIFA 21.
Having been suspended from transfer activity last season, Frank Lampard played more academy players than any other team in the league; showcasing their impressive youth setup. Now with Roman Ibramovic’s money burning a hole in his pocket, the club is sure to spend big.
With Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech already signed, and Kai Havertz expected to follow, Chelsea are expected to have one of the most talented line-ups in the Premier League next season.
The toughest challenge in a Chelsea Career Mode will be deciding how to cram all that talent into just 11 positions. With all the transfer activity, it’s easy to forget about the young talent in the side. Breakout seasons for Christian Pulisic, Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori propelled Chelsea to an unexpected top four finish.
With a huge transfer budget, exciting new signings, and youth players to develop into world-class talents, Chelsea are undoubtedly one of the most promising teams in FIFA 21.
It’s not all about the record breaking transfers and Champions League nights. Everyone loves an underdog, and Barrow are just that.
Vanarama National League winners last season and making their first appearance in a FIFA title ever, everyone is excited to see the historic football club back in the football league. In an age of super clubs with budgets bigger than some small countries, taking control of a newly promoted fourth division side will be a different kind of challenge.
Scouting for hidden gems on a shoestring budget and fighting your way up the football ladder will certainly be a long project. However, seeing Kylian Mbappe lifting the Champions League trophy and kissing the Barrow badge is exactly what the kind of storyline this game was made for.
3. Leeds United
After their 16-year absence from football's top flight, Leeds are back after being crowned winners of the Championship.
As always, staying in the Premier League may be a harder challenge than getting there in the first place. With last season’s champions Norwich finishing rooted to the bottom of the table, potential managers will have to avoid repeating the same mistakes.
Having been champions of England three times and even reaching a European final, Leeds have an impressive footballing heritage. Returning them to their former glory will be an exciting challenge in FIFA 21 and one that has to be tried.
In contrasting emotions to Leeds, despite their victory at Everton on the final day, Bournemouth were relegated from the Premier League by just one point.
With Manchester City already poaching their standout performer Nathan Ake, the first challenge after taking control will be to fight off interest for the rest of the squad.
Bournemouth’s five-year stay in the Premier League was an impressive one, which is why many fans were saddened to see Eddie Howe leave after guiding the club to the top flight all the way from League One.
Rebuilding this Bournemouth side in the relentless second tier will be a monumental challenge in FIFA 21, and making the right signings will be key to success.
Taking the wheel of The Cherries will require a manager with excellent knowledge of players who know what it takes to get back to the Premier League, but an immediate bounce back will be a rewarding challenge for FIFA players.
5. Wycombe Wanderers
Wycombe’s promotion to the Championship was made even sweeter by striker Adebayo Akinfenwa’s hilarious interview with Sky Sports. Wycombe’s promotion to the Championship is the highest the club have climbed up the footballing ladder in their 133-year history; and their work will be cut out to stay there.
If Wycombe are your Career Mode team of choice, the odds are stacked against you, quite literally, as the club are favourites to be relegated next season.
With the club scoring the least and conceding the most goals of the entire top six teams in League One, their promotion was a shock. With 33-year-old left back Jacobson being the club's top scorer, and 38-year-old Akinfenwa in second place, adding more firepower to the squad should be the first item on the list of any FIFA player up to the challenge of taking charge of this squad.
Keeping this incredible story going will be an amazing achievement for Wycombe, after finding themselves with only nine players at the start of pre-season last year.
6. Wigan Athletic
Wigan’s relegation from the Championship last season was a bitter pill to swallow, after a 12-point deduction after going into administration saw them relegated by just two points.
After being taken over by new owners and then going into administration a week later, this was a confusing and bizarre season for the club. After hopes of the points being reinstated disappeared as their appeal was rejected, The Latics will play in League One next season.
The form displayed in their final 15 games shows the promise in their squad, only losing once. Potential FIFA managers will have to stop the downward slide of the club after their unprecedented FA Cup victory against Manchester City in 2013, and bring them back to their former glory.
7. Charlton Athletic
After also being relegated from the Championship by an injury time Barnsley winner, Charlton also face an uphill battle in League One next season.
After a disastrous takeover of the club by new owners and a transfer embargo restricting their spending this season, the squad will need to use talent already in the team to push for promotion.
The long-term challenge for FIFA players will be to bring the club up to the level of its London neighbours and challenge them for the top spots.
8. Salford City
After an injection of cash in 2014 from the retirement funds of Manchester United legends Ryan Giggs, Phil Neville, Gary Neville, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt, the club has been reaching new heights season after season.
As well as David Beckham buying a share of the club in 2019, the side were promoted to League Two for the first time in their history. The team has had two BBC documentaries centred on their progress, and it would be a Hollywood worthy footballing story if the side could reach the Premier League.
The potential of adding an extra side into the battle for Manchester bragging rights is a strong incentive to try and set even more records at the club in FIFA 21.
Bolton are another fallen giant of the football league. Only 13 years ago the club reached the last 16 of the UEFA Cup, beating the likes of Red Star Belgrade and European champions Atletico Madrid.
Beginning last season with a 12-point deduction was not the best starting point for a promotion push, and the team finished bottom of the table with only 14 points to their name after several cancelled games and players going on strike over unpaid wages.
If you love a redemption story, a Bolton Career Mode would be one of the most impressive imaginable.
All of these teams will present managers with different challenges and different opportunities. Whether you like to simulate all your games and play long enough for even Phil Foden to retire, or if you prefer to splash the cash and take the league by storm before moving on, FIFA 21 will be the game for you.
Regardless of your team of choice, it is looking like FIFA 21 may present us with the best Career Mode seen in years.
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