Thursday 24 Jun
Updated Thursday 24 Jun 13:00
eSports

Seven West Ham United players who deserve a ratings upgrade in FIFA 22!

Vladimir Coufal


West Ham United’s form on the pitch was nothing other than red-hot during a Club record-setting 2020/21 season.

The Hammers’ excellent feats in the Premier League season – a Club record points tally (65), number of wins (19) and UEFA Europa League football next season – owed much to their collective ability, character and industry as well as some superb individual performances.

The latter was reflected on the virtual football pitch by the fact that the Hammers had no fewer than eleven inclusions in the Team of the Week on EA SPORTS’ FIFA 21, as well as three ‘Special’ Ultimate Team cards.

Tomáš Souček enjoyed three Team of the Week nods, along with two each for Jesse Lingard and Angelo Ogbonna, and further nominations for Jarrod Bowen, Lukasz Fabianski, Vladimir Coufal and Pablo Fornals. 

Souček was also named in the Premier League Team of the Season, while Manuel Lanzini earned a ‘Moments’ card for his wondergoal against Tottenham, and Lingard received a high-powered in-game reward for his Premier League Player of the Month award for April.

It’s safe to assert, therefore, that West Ham players performed beyond the level many expected them to this season – including EA’s own talent scouting network, the Ratings Collective.

At the start of every season, EA assigns each player an overall (“OVR”) rating out of 100, which is a combination – weighted depending on their position – of ratings in six categories,.

For outfield players, these are ratings of a player’s pace, dribbling, shooting, defending, passing and physical attributes, each of which in turn comprises of ratings in individual attributes such as sprint speed and acceleration for pace, and strength and jumping ability for physical attributes, for example.

While the anticipated release of the next title, FIFA 22, is some way off, we thought we’d suggest seven Hammers who – we feel – have proven themselves a cut above their FIFA 21 ratings...
 

Michail Antonio


Michail Antonio


Position: ST
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 79

An easy argument, this; West Ham United’s Michail Antonio has proven himself to be nothing other than a force to be reckoned with in front of goal in the last two seasons.

While the No30 was admittedly out of action for a significant stretch of 2020/21 with injury, his incredible run of form at the end of last season – with eight goals in seven games in July – was a case alone for a significant upgrade for FIFA 21.

Antonio ultimately ended up as the Hammers’ joint-top scorer for 2020/21, netting ten goals in 26 games including vital strikes against Tottenham, Burnley and West Bromwich Albion.

Throw in a further five assists, and with plenty such matchwinning goals to his name, we really feel that he earned increases to his attacking positioning (77), finishing (75), reactions (76) and composure (70) ratings.

If EA really want to activate ‘Beast Mode’ in FIFA 22, they’ll admit that this reborn Antonio’s potential certainly deserves more.
 

Tomáš Souček


Tomas Soucek


Position: CDM
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 81

Three FIFA Team of the Week selections – plus a Premier League Team of the Season selection – should be something of a hint regarding a better rating for West Ham’s all-action midfielder next season!

No Premier League player won more aerial battles last season than Souček, so there’s certainly scope for his heading (79) and jumping (70) ratings, while a team-joint-high of ten top-flight goals suggest his finishing (68), attacking positioning (71) and shot power (70) are all in need of a fillip. 

There’s also the case to suggest a transition from the Central Defensive Midfielder position to a Central Midfielder position – more applicable across many Ultimate Team formations – given Souček’s propensity for a box-to-box burst!
 

Craig Dawson


Craig Dawson


Position: CB
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 74

The numbers don’t lie on this one – in Craig Dawson’s first six appearances for West Ham United, the Irons won five games and kept four clean sheets, conceding just three times.

A solid performer throughout the second half of the season, Dawson belied his initial FIFA 21 Silver card OVR rating of 74 with four goals and eight clean sheets in 24 appearances over the course of the season.  

Having initially joined on loan, the experienced, committed and respected Premier League defender was recently confirmed to be remaining at London Stadium until at least summer 2023.

Dawson has certainly showed himself to have better defensive awareness and tackling ability than 76 and 73 respectively, while the consummate Premier League professional has better pace (59) and physical (76) attributes than his current Ultimate Team card affords.
 

Aaron Cresswell


Aaron Cresswell


Position: LB
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 78

A dependable defender with a wand of a left foot, Cresswell flourished during 2020/21 under manager David Moyes, most saliently in offensive contribution.

No other Premier League defender had more: eight assists – taking his top-flight tally up to 26 – suggests that the 31-year-old deserves better than his current ratings in crossing (79), vision (68), long passing (69) and curve (77).

His solidity on the left side of the defence also almost certainly warrants improvements on his defensive awareness (73), standing tackle (78) and interceptions (75) ratings in time for the next campaign.
 

Vladimír Coufal


Vladimir Coufal


Position: RB
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 78

While Coufal was perhaps an unknown quantity to many West Ham United supporters before he joined from Slavia Prague in October 2020, a 78 rating certainly doesn’t reflect the consistency he’s offered since – nor the attacking threat.

Second only to Cresswell in the Premier League’s assists table for assists – Coufal was joint-second in the division with seven – the Czech Republic international deserves boosts to his FIFA 21 ratings for vision (69), curve (67), long passing (73) and short passing (75).

His defensive attributes also should be bolstered: we’d like to see him go up a notch or two in defensive awareness (74), standing tackle (74), sliding tackle (73), interceptions (73) and strength (76).
 

Pablo Fornals


Pablo Fornals


Position: LM
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 79

Watch our ‘Every goal West Ham United scored in 2020/21’ reel and count the number of times Pablo Fornals is involved in the build-up.

The Spaniard was typically tenacious and quietly influential over the course of the season, and certainly deserves an upgrade on his 79 OVR base rating sooner rather than later.

We’d be looking to boost the 25-year-old’s pace stats – acceleration (70) and sprint speed (66), agility (76), balance (75), reactions (75) and stamina (78) for starters – and we’d also like to see his short passing (81) and crossing (75) boosted to reflect Fornals’ output, which included five goals and four assists.
 

Declan Rice


Declan Rice


Position: CDM
Base FIFA 21 OVR Rating: 79

As well as wearing the captain’s armband for much of the season and being arguably their best FIFA player, West Ham United’s own midfield engine room should be in the OVR 80s, no doubt about it.

Hammers fans will be queuing up to advocate improvements to Rice’s card all-round, but he definitely possesses better pace (65) and skills in passing (65) and dribbling (69) than his FIFA 21 card suggests.

Even in terms of his 78 defence, we would be keen to see improvements to his defensive awareness (79), interceptions (78) and sliding tackle (79) ratings.

A top young player deserves a top card – so let’s hope it happens in FIFA 22!
 

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