Introduction: How do these articles work?
Each Sunday I examine a different team in detail and look at why they’re a good team for FIFA 17’s career mode. The teams are broken down into the following categories:
- Tier 1: Teams in tough divisions that can push on to challenge for silverware
- Tier 2: Teams that will have to fight for survival in a challenging division
- Tier 3: Teams that start in a lower division but can hope to get promoted and work their way up higher leagues
- Tier 4: Teams that start right at the bottom of the pile, with few funds or high potential players
Everton (Tier 1)
Tier 1 teams can challenge for the title in a tough division, but it’ll be no walk in the park.
- Why choose Everton?
- Recommended purchases
- Suggested sales
- Future considerations
Starting transfer budget: £43,683,444
Starting wage budget: £188,748
Default formation: 4-4-1-1
• Domestic success: High
• Continental success: Medium
• Brand exposure: High
• Financial success: Medium
• Youth development: Medium
Key player: Romelu Lukaku
Best young prospect: Romelu Lukaku
Why choose Everton?
I recommended Everton for career mode in FIFA 16, and if anything they’re even better this year. But in FIFA 17, Everton exist in a strange place. In almost any other league they they could walk away with the title, or at least consistently finish in the top three. They are stacked full of players who have both high potentials and high OVRs, and a huge budget with which to buy new players.
But the problem is that they play in the Premier League. It’s so competitive that Everton would do well to qualify for Europe in FIFA 17. However, this situation does mean that they’re a great team for career mode. With the players and budget that they have, you have a great opportunity to take them up the table and even win some trophies.
The team’s key player is Romelu Lukaku. He’s pretty much the perfect striker – great in the air and with the ball at his feet, fast, strong and deadly both from range and up close. He’s by far Everton’s best striker with his 85 OVR rating, so it’s essential that you keep hold of him – finding a replacement will be extremely difficult.
He’s also Everton’s most promising player thanks to his amazing 90 potential. If you think he’s good now, just wait until he hits his potential – he will be absolutely unstoppable. Unless a world record fee comes in for him, avoid selling him – that potential will serve you well for years to come.
Strongest starting lineup
Changing the formation slightly to 4-2-3-1, here is Everton’s strongest starting lineup, with OVRs in brackets:
Highest potential lineup
Keeping the formation 4-2-3-1, here is Everton’s highest potential lineup, with potentials in brackets:
Key signings required: GK, CB, winger.
First of all, change Everton’s budget ratio to 79:21. That will give you £42,798,681 in transfer funds and £205,762 in wages. Now let’s buy some players.
Club: Toulouse FC
There’s a strong squad at Everton, but the goalkeepers clearly aren’t as good as the rest of the pack. Joel Robles is the most promising one, but his 76 OVR and 80 potential are both lower than the other players in the starting lineup. Maarten Stekelenburg has reached his 76 potential, while Mateusz Hewelt only has 74 potential. This is the first area we need to strengthen.
And why not strengthen it by getting one of the most promising young goalkeepers in world football? That’d be Alban Lafont of Toulouse FC. He’s just 17 but already has 77 OVR, so can go straight into the starting 11. Even better, he’s got 89 potential, so will become one of the most reliable goalkeepers in the world once he’s developed.
He’s not even as expensive as you might think – Toulouse FC want £13m for him, which can be brought down to £12m. His wages are also pretty cheap at £15,000, and he wants the ‘squad rotation player’ squad role.
The next problem area is centre back. While the pairing of Ashley Williams and Phil Jagielka is a solid one, they’re both fairly old (31 and 33), so will be declining soon. You’ll want to bring in at least one replacement who can get into the starting lineup quickly and make that position his own.
I recommend you buy Daniele Rugani of Juventus. His 80 OVR means he can replace Jagielka straight away, and with a phenomenal 88 potential he’ll grow quickly. His tackling stats (85 marking, 85 stand tackle and 83 slide tackle) are amazing for his age, and he’ll be so hard for attackers to beat. He’s also strong and very good in the air, so will score a few goals from set pieces and corners.
Juventus want £23.5m for him, but you can buy him for £17.5m. His £105,000 wages make up more than half of the total we spend on wages in this article, but he’s worth it for that OVR and potential combination.
Club: Sporting CP
Everton have a lot of very talented central midfielders, but they’re really lacking in high potential wingers. Kevin Mirallas is the best potential winger, but he’s already hit his 82 potential. Aaron Lennon and Yannick Bolasie are both very good, but they’re not going to improve any more. When you start a career Ross Barkley is played out wide, but he’s wasted there and should be played more centrally. We need at least one promising winger to carry the team forward into the future.
My suggestion is Gelson Martins of Sporting CP, and he’s got everything you need in a winger. His combination of 94 acceleration, 93 sprint speed and 92 balance will make beating a defenders a breeze, as will his 85 dribbling and 5 star skills. He’s also got 84 composure, so won’t lose his cool when it comes to one-on-ones. To top it off, he’s got 77 crossing and 80 stamina, so will be up and down the wings all game providing good crosses to his teammates.
Sporting CP want you to pay a whopping £33.5m for him, but you can knock almost £10m off that and only have to pay £24m. His wages are incredibly cheap for his ability, at just £15,000.
Club: Milan (loan)
Cost: £984,000 (loan recall)
The final player we want to bring in is actually one who’s already on the team: Gerard Deulofeu. That’s because he’s currently loaned out to Milan, but given Everton’s winger situation and his 88 potential, we really want him back on the team.
Like Martins, Deulofeu is extremely pacey (93 acceleration and 93 sprint speed), and has exceptional dribbling ability (89 dribbling). He’s got a 4 star weak foot and 4 star skills too, so is tricky on either side of the pitch. With him on one flank and Martins on the other, your wingers will be absolutely deadly and will provide excellent support for Lukaku.
To bring Deulofeu back to Everton, go to the squad report and cancel his loan. It’ll cost £984,000 to bring him back, which isn’t much to pay at all for a player of his ability. His wages are £82,000.
Sell Maarten Stekelenburg for £3m; he’s 33 and his value is only going to decrease. You can also sell Hewelt for about £200,000.
In defence, you could sell Antonee Robinson for £250,000 and Matthew Pennington for £750,000. They both have 76 potential so could become decent squad players, but sell them if you don’t feel that you’ll use them much.
As for midfielders, sell Harry Charsley for £250,000, Joe Williams for £150,000 and David Henen for £350,000. You could also sell Gareth Barry for around £2m.
Finally, sell Courtney Duffus for about £230,000, Bassala Sambou for £100,000 and Arouna Koné for around £2.8m.
Future considerations: get a new left back
Everton have quite a few left backs, but they’re not hugely promising. Leighton Baines has 83 OVR, but the next best left back (Luke Garbutt) has 77 potential, which is a fair amount lower. It’s not essential to get a new left back, but with Baines declining soon and Garbutt with good-but-not-amazing potential, you might want to bring in someone else.
If so, I recommend you buy Luke Shaw from Manchester United. He’s had his problems at Man Utd, and this is a great opportunity to give him a fresh start. He’s fast, strong and good in both attack and defence, so would be an excellent understudy to Baines. He’s also got 84 potential and a very good OVR for his age, so it won’t be long until he becomes your starting left back.
Although Manchester United want £15.5m for him, you can actually get him for as little as £10m. His wages are £80,000.
That’s it for this week’s article on good teams for career mode. I’ve had a few people asking me to do a career mode guide on Everton, and it’s easy to see why. With a fantastic budget and a great squad, they’re ideally placed to challenge for the Premier League title. Bring in a few new players and you’ll have an absolutely incredible squad at your disposal.
I’d like to hear if you have any thoughts about the format of the article itself. Did you find it useful? Conversely, do you think it was missing something that you’d have liked me to include?