Tips for Defending
Knowing how to defend by creating awkward and uncomfortable situations for attackers is the key to shutting down their offense and create opportunities to seize the ball. Also included are some useful actions you can use to challenge strikers and block attempts to line up a shot at your post.
FIFA 21 is available on multiple platforms: Google Stadia, Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Nintendo Switch, and Microsoft Windows (PC).
Get comfortable with the controls.
You will want to practice using many of the most useful defending actions such as jockeying, tackling, and switching players on the fly. There is really no shortcut to getting comfortable doing these other than playing as much games as you can online or against the AI.
Shut down scoring opportunities with positioning.
A large part of good defense is knowing how to shut down your opponent’s options to drive the ball further in the pitch. A good example of this is to be aware of through ball passes that enemy attackers will often attempt when up against your defenders to another opponent waiting to make a goal. Switch players using the right analog stick to deny the receiving enemy and make him doubt his chance to make shot.
Jockeying is a good way to bully attackers into uncomfortable positions and angles, making them less likely to line up a clear shot or panic into making a wrong decision during the situation. As opposed to high-risk defense actions like tackling, jockeying is more about pressuring your opponent into losing his best angle of attack and cutting off escape routes.
Jockeying is also very effective during one-on-one situations and allows you to quickly change directions or move back further toward the penalty box against an approaching attacker. This allows you to stay on them until the very last second they decide to shoot.
Use standing tackles sparingly.
A common mistake among many new players is a tendency to overuse standing tackles, especially when panicking or under pressure when more than one attacker is approaching. It is very risky to do this as your opponent can easily get past you if you time the move wrong. There is also the danger of hitting your opponent’s legs instead of the ball, giving them a penalty kick.
The best time to use standing tackles is when you see a good angle to intercept, though often times, the opponent will read this to set themselves up for a penalty kick.
Adopt various formations.
You can opt to use the 4-1-3-2, 4-3-1-2, and 5-3-2 when on the defensive as these offer the best flexibility to switch between defense and attack. Test out as many formations as you can to see which ones suit the strengths and weaknesses of players in your squad.
Move the goalkeeper.
As your last chance to stop the opponent’s offense, move your goalkeeper by pressing down and tilting the right analog stick (R3) button. You will then be able to position your last line of defense to better react to your opponent’s angle of attack. As a general rule, avoid moving too far from the post too often to meet the attacker head-on. Instead, position yourself halfway as a means to confuse the attackers and make them doubt their planned angle of attack.