Like the title says, the player picture of Paulinho where he shows his tongue pretty much sums up Paulinho for you. Its like having Kante who can pass, out strength your opponent & shoot on your team & costs only 150k, even less if you have high overall players in your team. I would say absolute bargain. And hes not even that hard to link with as hes Brazilian. But to give you a better perspective of this card lets wrap up his stats.
PACE 8.5/10: I must say 77 pace for a cm is pretty good. And whoever says "pace doesn't matter for cm" is just wrong imo. If you combine high pace, defending, strength & aggression it gives you crazy combo of player who can track runs and intercept passes like crazy & win 1v1 battles. Something really similar what Kante does, but Paulinho can also do more than just that. Only reason why i didn't give him 10/10 is because i actually wanted to give him shadow and boost his pace even more to 89 as this combo is actually so ridiculously good i had to boost it more. If he had like +85 pace i wouldn't had to give him shadow and i could have boosted his other stats like dribbling or passing.
SHOOTING 9.0/10: I think i haven't missed 1 opportunity at inside the box with this card. Sure he has scored only 5 goals for me, but as a cm you don't get many opportunities to score. But every time i got a chance with him at inside the box he has scored. Its also great he actually has 88 attack positioning which is very rare for a cm. That makes him make clever runs inside the box & behind the defense line. I even got some breakaways with him as he make a good run in a right time, something you don't really expect from your cm. His powershots to nearpost is really op as he has high shot power & finishing. Pretty much every goal with him has been powershot to near post lol. Only thing which lets down on his shooting though is his curve & long shots could be little higher. Couldn't really take finesse shots outside the box with him, but everything else is spot on. Because of his finesse shots were pretty bad i had to give him "only" 9.0. But if you shoot with him only at inside the box he will score you plenty of goals.
PASSING 8/10: Not like having a KDB, but better than 82 what the card shows. This is actually pretty weird for me. For a cm you would of course like a player with really high passing, someone like KDB, Pogba, Gerrard etc. And Paulinho is not that i can tell you, but its ok for me because hes not in my team to give pinpoint passes. Hes there to track runs and intercept passes & win 1v1 battles. So when i saw he had 82 passing i thought "ok its pretty average but maybe i can live with it". But it definitely feels way better than just 82 passing. I think its because his low crossing, curve & free kicks which makes his passing lower than it really should be. Honestly his passing feels like 85-87, could be even better if you give him like an engine for chem style. Was actually really surprised with this one. That's why the 8 rating.
DRIBBLING 7/10: Not great, but still nothing you cannot handle. And you probably guessed this. Yes, Paulinho feels pretty clunky with the ball sometimes, again though this is something you could help with by just giving him an engine if you like. That 73 agility is pretty bad i'm not gonna lie to you, but there is positive sites. 75 balance for player who is 6'0 tall is pretty good. I've heard people saying its shit, but honestly most players with +80 balance is like 5'8 tall & 60 strength. So imo that's good for player that size & strength. And you can definitely feel that in game, he feels really hard player to get knocked off ball, really similar to Ronaldo actually who also has "only" 70 balance and same time is really hard player to get knocked off ball. Top of that he has really good ball control, reactions & composure. Sadly though that agility is just very important this year, specially in bad gameplay. But again this is something what could massively help you if you just give him engine. Still everything beside agility is pretty good on this card dribbling wise, so imo its nothing you cannot handle.
DEFENDING & PHYSICAL 11/10: This is why EA gave him that picture & this is why i absolute love this card. I wanted to combine this 2 stats together because its like Batman & Robin of Fifa. If 1 of them wouldn't be there it wouldn't feel the same, they need each other to succeed. His high aggression & strength makes him honestly win almost every 1v1 ball & even if your opponent gets the ball from him this guy just shows his tongue to your opponent just like in his picture on this card and gets the ball back. His high interceptions & pace makes him track runs like Kante. To top of that H/H workrates & 96 stamina which means he covers the space like Kante, and he won't tire. I tried him at first as engine and it didn't feel right for me as i wanted him to be more defensive minded midfielder for me (as i have Gerrard next side of him), so i slapped him Shadow and BOOM. Felt like completely different player defensively, of course little worse offensively but that's fine as this is what he needs to do. Track runs & intercept balls. Seriously its so good its crazy, if i could give him more than 10 rating i could. Of course i'm not saying hes like Vieira or Gullity, but for a 150k sbc player its insane.
FORMATION: 4-4-2, used him as a cm.
GAMES PLAYED: 20 (10 in fut champs, 10 in rivals)
CHEM STYLE: SHADOW
My record in WL now: 10-0. My record in WL last week. 25-4
So overall what i can say from this card by my own experience is that hes absolute insane defensively. Average with the ball though, but that's fine for player worth 150k, you don't expect him to be someone like Gullit lets be real. He will have flaws, but not one as big you cannot live with it. I can totally recommend this card if you look player similar to Kante, but who can also shoot when needed. And for 150k (for me it was like 50k thanks for high rated untradeables from rivals), for that price even though you cannot sold him is absolute bargain imo. Even if it doesn't fit in your team at later stages of game this will 100% be good super sub to use. Also even though hes from CLS, the Brazilian flag helps you massively with linking him. I linked him with Gerrard, Neymar, Telles & Militao. Those are all really good meta players. And someone like Lucas or Hulk sbc is decent shout on linking him too. If you have any more questions feel free to ask i try to answer to them asap :)
- Ability of tracking runs & intercept passes, even better with shadow chem style on. Really similar on what Kante does.
- Ability to win 1v1 balls & gets the ball back even though your opponent wins the ball. Something someone like Ronaldo does, even though your opponents wins the ball from you, you just somehow win it back.
- Defending in general is great
- Finishing at inside the box with powershots
- Passing is better than the card shows
- On dribbling everything beside agility is good, you can specially feel his good composure & ball control when he doesn't take that bad touch under pressure or miss goal scoring opportunity under pressure
- Fairly easy to link with other Brazilian meta players such like Neymar, Allan, Lucas, Militao, Telles etc.
- Price. Feels like a bargain for 150k at least for me, even though it probably wont go in to your end game team, he could still be good super sub. On top of that if you have many untradeables from rivals or upgrade packs (like i did), you can do it fairly cheap. For me it cost 50k.
- 4* Skills.
- Jumping. Wins many headers thanks to his 6'0 height and insanely good jumping. Pretty much dominates the airspace, just sad you cannot score headers though.
This goes in order.
- Hard to link with green links & other than Brazilian players
- 3* wf
- Curve makes him finesse shots poor
- Long shots