Day One of Lockdown: Got up ate breakfast, folded laundry from the night before, stared longingly at the outside like the Pablo Escobar meme, loaded up FUT, and produced my first ever Elite 2 finish.
Two keys to my best ever finish would have to be the lack of a promo and having to change my squad completely, which allowed for some familiarity with players to form; secondly the contributions of this weekend’s review, 91 IF Sadio Mané. 26 goals and 8 assists in 20 games was an amazing return, considering Mané only played in the ST position of the 4-4-2 for 45 mins a match. The entire second half of each match I would move Mané out to the LM in order to utilize his pace, power, and precision. The application of the MARKSMAN chemistry style seems to be the popular choice with the LFC man, and I found it created boosts in the perfect areas to turn this card into a game-breaker. Sadio Mané was the workhorse in the following squad this weekend:
Pace Rating: 9.7/10
Dribbling Rating: 9.5/10
Shooting Rating: 9.5/10
Passing Rating: 8/10
Physical Rating: 9/10
Defending Rating: N/A
Down .1 overall from my past two reviews, but definitely more versatile than just about all of the players I have reviewed for the past two months. I previously mentioned the keys to this card above; pace, power, precision. The first thing you notice with this card is the pace, which feels like Mané is just driving past his opponents with his 98 ACCELERATION & 95 SPRINT SPEED. I wouldn’t call Mané quick, but he is insanely fast and this is especially noticeable when he is on the ball. Then the power, 75 STRENGTH & 84 AGGRESSION do not come close to explaining the supremacy Sadio commands over the ball. Finally, the precision … 4 STAR WEAK FOOT, 99 FINISHING, 94 SHOT POWER, & 91 LONG SHOTS. Following the trend from my Lisandro and Richarlison reviews, Mané also hits the ball with real venom and deadly accuracy.
Linkability Rating: 4/5
The list of Liverpool players and EPL players goes on and on, only making the links to a card like Mané more adaptable. The LW/LM does provide some underlying issues and required an additional Liverpool link in my squad, which to my delight brought back the return of Scream Firmino into the mix. Ultimately, it proves my point that you can fit him in if you want to try him, but it is not as easy as a central card would be.
End Game Strength
End Game Strength Rating: 4/5
Been waiting for the right time to change the title of this section from current game to end game and I think now feels about right. It is time in the cycle to start looking at cards for their longevity and how they might stand up against the madness of FUT Birthday, TOTS, and FUTTIES cards. With Mané, I do not feel like he will be in many end game squads given that he is only an inform and people look to new and shiny options. However, he has the attributes to suggest he could be. Primarily, 99 AGILITY & 88 BALANCE … two statistics that prove to be the key differences between different tier players.
Value/Coins & Good vs. Bad
Value/Coins Rating: 5/5
Good vs Bad Rating: 5/5
Granted it is with the MARKSMAN applied … but Mané moves to 95+ Pace, Shooting, & Dribbling. The cheapest option on the market with these stats is none other than TOTY Mané oddly enough, sitting at 2 million coins (side note: I refuse to put TOTY Mané in my squad, because I know he would never leave and would tie up 2 million coins for my reviews). With those stats in mind, I feel like 600k for Mané is about fair market value and as new promos drop he will only slide lower and be an even better bargain.
Easy 5/5 for this category, and only two complaints or “if only’s” come to mind. “If only” this card could finesse the ball a bit better he would be unstoppable and would have received a 9.9/10 Shooting rating from me. He has all the qualities to create chances but did miss a small amount, especially when curling the ball far post. And, “if only” he could pass the ball with a bit more accuracy and guile he would be an unstoppable force, also opening up options to play him in even deeper offensive roles as a CAM or even a CM.
If I look at my squad from two weekends ago, compared to what I finished with Sunday … there are not many differences. Therefore, I think it is safe to say that Mané played a major part in my trip to Elite 2. He was a warrior all weekend and I am not sure whether I preferred him as a ST or LM? As a ST his agility and finishing shone through. While as a LM he struck fear in my opponents RB all game long, as his pace and power were a handful to deal with. Regardless, Mané proved to be an “as advertised” player who more than paid for his price tag with goals and assists. I highly recommend trying Mané, and if you are like me, you have the time on your hands to give him a real go. Cheers for reading.