After 30 nostalgic years, FIFA’s partnership with EA Sports (and therefore FIFA Ultimate Team / ‘FUT’) has come to an end. Now marks a new era of ‘FIFA’ with the introduction of EA Sports FC 24 releasing in a few months, what better time to reminisce about the past.
With my collection of FIFA games starting from FIFA 12, there have been many overpowered FUT cards that can bring you the greatest joy in your life or make your controller fly across the room, if somebody else was using them instead of you. It was a tough decision just to pick five but here’s to the ones who made FIFA Ultimate Team the mode it is today.
FUT: A Brief History
FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT) is a game mode within the popular FIFA video game series developed by EA Sports. It was first introduced as a downloadable expansion for FIFA 09 in March 2009 and quickly became one of the most popular and revenue-generating features of the franchise.
FIFA Ultimate Team has established itself as a key and enduring element of the FIFA franchise, drawing in millions of players from all over the world, boosting engagement, and bringing in a sizable amount of money for EA Sports via microtransactions involving the purchase of player packs and FIFA Points.
But it’s really the memories that are created every year when the newest title comes out. The start of FUT is always the best as you’re forced to stick with the low-rated cards to build up your team. Then you realise that these ‘low-rated’ cards are the most essential part of your team.
Let’s hope that EA Sports FC can continue this trend. My pick for the next OP card is Nicholas Jackson of Chelsea but for now, in this article for the Hobby FC Gaming Collection, let’s have a look at previous overpowered FUT cards.
A mode that has lived for 14 years, there have been multiple overpowered cards in every FIFA game but not everyone can make the list. However, there is no argument about the impact they had on players each year and not mentioning them in this article is an insult to their footprint in the game.
- Nilmar (83 rated ST, FIFA 12)
- Emmanuel Emenike (81 rated ST, FIFA 13)
- Chris Smalling (84 rated CB, FIFA 17)
- Tiemoue Bakayoko (82 rated CDM, FIFA 18)
- Kylian Mbappe (89 rated ST, FIFA 20)
Stephan El Shaarawy (FIFA 12)
A silver card? Yes, your eyes are correct. This bang-average-looking, then 19-year-old Stephan El Shaarawy put all gold cards to shame. FIFA 12 was a game for skillers. Button-mashing gods made FUT quite sufferable and it’s due to this card.
What makes this card OP?
This 73-rated card possessed a rare 5-star skill AND 5-star weak foot combo coupled with his impressive dribbling stats puts this card in the top five. It’s impossible to see a silver card in anyone’s main team as of now but back in 2011, this card would be found everywhere. It’s what makes this card the greatest silver card in FUT history.
Alexander Esswein (FIFA 13)
A year later, skills were rather limited so while a double 5-star/week foot player was still outstanding, they still needed that one thing. Pace. Pace was, and still is, the most overpowered attribute in FIFA history.
This 75-rated striker from Germany was not blessed with that 5-star combo but rather blessed with 92 acceleration and 90 sprint speed. However, if you had the ability to use him 10 years ago, it’s most likely guaranteed that he is the fastest player you’ve used. The term ‘Pace God’ was coined to describe him.
He didn’t really make it in real life as many hoped he would but, no worries, he holds the title of the greatest gold card in history.
The Roma Trio (Gervinho, Ibarbo & Doumbia- FIFA 15)
Sweaty. No, not the bodily function that occurs when you exercise too much. The word you say whenever you see this front three on your screen. The Giallorossi had Gervinho and Seydou Doumbia from the Ivory Coast, as well as Colombian international and long-time FIFA favourite Victor Ibarbo, and it was incredible.
The trident was so good that your entire game plan would consist of playing a through ball in behind and waiting for your attackers to explode off the blocks. Many controllers have been damaged on Xbox and PlayStation because of these three players wreaking havoc on the counter-attack. We’ll never forget how dominant they were.
Jack Butland (FIFA 17)
The first and only goalkeeper to feature on this list. Goalkeepers at any rating are hard to judge. You can have a 92-rated Manuel Neuer on your team, and he’ll probably act like 2022-2023 David De Gea. It’s hit-and-miss with this position on FIFA.
But then comes this 23-year-old English goalkeeper who plays for Stoke. This man is by far the greatest goalkeeper to come out of FIFA Ultimate Team. It is so weird, his stats are so bang average but his in-game ability just dumbfounded opponents to the point he was in most pro-gamers teams.
Paired with the previously mentioned Chirs Smalling, this duo was a must for every team you create in FIFA 17 (my first and favourite FIFA).
Romain Alessandrini (FIFA 18) In-Form
Likewise, in all the cards I’ve mentioned, stats do not tell the story. Once you played with this card, you can tell this is something special. The pace, the dribbling, the finishing, it all feels unique.
At the start, this card was available to purchase for a measly 12k. With everyone realising how unreal this card was, the price bump was inevitable. Profit was made from an 82-rated MLS card, as the card’s price rose to around 60k.
So not only was this card overpowered but it helped users progress within their team, making more and more money as the game goes on. Basically, what FUT is all about.
As an avid collector of FIFA and an ever-present FUT player, this was such a hard list to make. Catch me on another day and I would probably have a different five to choose from.
It’s goodbye from FIFA but Ultimate Team still lives, let’s hope for more overpowered players to make our gaming experience enjoyable… unless you go up against them.
Who’s your favourite over-powered FUT card of all time?