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FIFA 09 is the latest version of a great football simulator produced by EA sports. Every team was designed to emulate it’s playing style – and Barcelona is no exception. They are very tough to beat – especially to defend against. Yet, scoring goals against the mighty Barca can in fact be easier than expected – you just need to use the correct tactics.
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Well, probably your team’s default formation is the best to use as it was especially designed to suit for you players. However, if you are thinking about picking a team with a formation that will pose as many problems as possible for Barca – try to pick one with 3 attackers. Barcelona is pretty potent at midfield and attack – so when playing against Barca you should try and take the game into your opponent's territory.
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Well, defending against Barcelona is one of the toughest tasks there are in FIFA09. It is an excellent team, overloaded with superstars, which is also all about attack. Messi, Xavi, Iniesta, Eto, Henry – all of them can beat your defenders one-on-one. This invites implying the zone defense tactics. NEVER try to go for offside trap – the quick attackers will beat your defenders and there is also little chance that any of them will miss a shot facing your goalie. Pressing is also not advisable. It can be used, though, when combined with defensive mentality, so that you press the Barcelona stars and yet have an additional line of defense to cover if your defender is beaten.
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As it was already said – Barcelona is relatively weak defensively, and most importantly: at central defense positions. The goalie Valdes is also not so formidable and can be beaten with long range shots. It might be advisable to use Box offensive tactics, bringing many players towards Barcelona’s penalty area. Both Puyol and Marques are not so good in clearing balls and Toure is also actually an “attacking style” defensive midfielder. 3rd man offense can be little bit adventurous, as you will probably need and extra defender to cope with Barcelona attacks – but can be used occasionally when you are in desperate need of goal. Wing play is not advisable, as Barca's midfield wingers will help full backs in preventing your crosses from reaching the penalty box.
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Barcelona will attack – regardless of the mentality that is set (unless some crazy player will try to play with defensive mentality which is definitely a mistake). Thus, you need to be aware of their quick forwards - defensive mentality is a good option. If you feel that your team can cope with Barca’s style, you can go for neutral mentality – in this case you have to win possession percentages and dictate the game's tempo. But going for offensive mentality is VERY dangerous – quick counterattacks with 2-3 players is a serious Barcelona weapon, as those 2-3 players are very technical and quick.
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Barcelona is a very tough opponent is FIFA 09 – as they are in reality. Their only major weakness is the team's back line – and this should be utilized to perfection – taking the ball into Barca territory, trying to have a great deal of possession, and neutralizing Messi and Eto.
A guide covering how to play and beat any of the various teams in FIFA 2009.