FIFA 23 expert tips: 10 tips to improve your game immediately

FIFA 23 expert tips
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Looking for FIFA 23 expert tips? Look no further. 

YouTuber and FIFA expert NealGuides (opens in new tab) has been playing the game for weeks now, having been given early access – and he's already mastered the new iteration. With tutorials and guides to help teach the average FIFA player how to master gameplay, formations and more, he's one of the biggest FIFA players and coaches on the internet.

The reviews are in for FIFA 23 and though there more gentle evolution than groundbreaking changes in this version, there are still ways that you can get ahead of the pack in FIFA…

FIFA 23 expert tips:

1. How to pick the perfect formation in FIFA 23

One of the first aspects to arrange when you start FIFA 23 is your Custom Tactics & Formations. There is an array of formations, including a new 5-1-2-2 system, we would suggest setting up three formations: defensive, balanced and attacking system.

For a defensive formation, lean towards a formation with 2 CDMs, such as the 4-2-3-1 which has always been very effective in all iterations of FIFA. 4-1-2-1-2 (2) and 4-1-2-1-2 are two good balanced formations that provide you with either a narrow style (4-1-2-1-2 (2)) or a wider formation (4-1-2-1-2) where you have LM/RMs instead of LCM/RCM.

An attacking formation such as the 4-4-2 Flat is quite useful for pressing when losing. The key is to give yourself variety in-game: keep the tactics balanced, and then tinker them to your liking. For example, go with the 4-4-2 and if you find it too defensive, you can always add a defensive style such as “Pressure on Heavy Touch”, increase the depth and maybe add a CM instruction to “Get Forward” when attacking. Find out what works for your play style and keep tinkering until you find the perfect formula. 

If you are looking for tactics, there are templates for tactics on the NealGuides YouTube channel (opens in new tab) that you can follow and adjust to your playstyle.

2. How Player Switching works

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Player Switching is the secret to good defending and yet it’s an aspect that every FIFA player struggles with, from Division 10 all the way to Elite level. 

There is a new feature in FIFA 23 called “Adaptive Right Stick Switching”: this setting can be found in the controller settings and it allows you to hold the right analog stick for longer to choose a player that is further away. If you struggle with right stick switching, this may help, because you can also see a visual reference on where you are aiming your right stick, so you know who exactly you are switching to when you are practicing. 

Give this new setting a try as it might be just to your liking and will help make player switching more consistent.

3. Pace is incredibly important

FIFA 23 expert tips

Kylian Mbappe in FIFA 23 (Image credit: EA)

Pace is one the most pivotal factors in FIFA 23, especially since the Running Jockey this year has been nerfed, so now opposition attackers are even more dangerous when running in behind for a through ball. 

Furthermore, some specific players on New Generation (New-Gen) consoles have new acceleration types, there are three categories: controlled, lengthy and explosive. Explosive gets an initial acceleration boost, lengthy acquires more acceleration in longer distance and controlled is just a generic acceleration type. Players are put in specific “accelerate type” categories based on their stats. You can see this in the in-game menus when checking a player’s stats. 

4. How to win the ball without pulling your defence out of shape

FIFA 23 expert tips

Vinicius Jr taking on Trent Alexander Arnold in FIFA 23 (Image credit: EA)

When defending, you will notice it to be more manual and slightly more passive this time around. This is due to the running jockey nerf, which now players running jockey speed depends on their defensive awareness stat, not just their sprint speed.

Try to defend aggressively with your CMs/CDMs – as opposed to your back line – and bring the midfield back to defend when you feel you need support. The back line should always remain in shape, especially in FIFA 23, as stepping up, will almost result in your opponent trying to feed a through ball or a lob through ball in behind to easily break your defence. If you do see a through ball in behind, in almost all situations, try to run back towards goal before the ball arrives, this way you slow your opponent down and protect the angle towards goal. 

Another top tip is bringing the goalkeeper out (Triangle / Y) in 1v1 situations to close the angle to the attacker, making it much more difficult for your opponent to score.

5. How to attack in FIFA 23

Attacking this year may feel different this is down to two major things: gameplay speed & left stick dribbling. The gameplay speed has slowed down this year, so many players are trying to compensate by sprinting – but try not to, as the game favours a slower approach, with emphasis on trying to build up and finding the right pass, as opposed to just always trying to make a “no-scope” pass without facing a player. 

Use of L1 / LB triggers and one-twos are the best way to create attacking chances when going forward. There are four new skill moves added into FIFA 23, which can be effective in the final third to help break down defences and provide yourself that extra space inside the box to pull the trigger, too. If you are struggling to get past a low defensive block, you do have the new power shot mechanic, to shoot from distance, too. 

6. Dribbling has been revamped

Arguably the biggest change this year is left stick dribbling, specifically on New-Gen consoles. It's a whole new system called Technical Dribbling and it will be the most difficult revamp to master: so please, have patience. 

Dribbling is clunkier than last year, however, the key is to manoeuvre the left analog stick by rotating it, as opposed to flicking it. It’s important in terms of possession and you won’t be able to keep the ball safely as you could before, so the advice here is to tap the L2 / LT button, which is the button for shielding when in possession, to help protect the ball and take a touch away from your opponent when you receive the ball.

Inside the box, use smooth movements and through practice, you will get the hang of the new system. The new system has some benefits as it allows your player to move through paths and dribble in ways you could not previously.

7. The Crossing Zone has been extended

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This year there has been an extension of the cross zone. Whereas typically before you could cross from the wings, in FIFA 23, EA have extended the zone from which you can cross from. 

The cross zone is extended at the top of the box, on either side of the penalty arc. These are perfect for crossing the ball into the box if you see a late runner running far post. Another key tip here is to use an outside the foot cross by pressing L2 / LT + Cross, when trying to cross the ball to request an outside the foot cross. 

Try to apply more power on the cross to ensure the outside-of-the-foot animation is registered.

8. How to take Power Shots

The Power shot is a new powerful feature this year that rewards shots with additional accuracy and power. It's simple to perform, too: hit L1 + R1 + Shoot / LB + RB + Shoot. The difference here is that you must manually aim your shot with the Left Analog Stick. 

The best trick is to aim at the goalkeeper, as aiming initially is quite sensitive – but once you get the grasp of how to keep the shot on target, you can end up shooting from distance to score satisfying screamers. Do bear in mind that it takes some time for the animation to actually shoot the ball, so it's perfect to use from distance outside the box, when there are no opposition players around you.

9. How and when to take Low shots

FIFA 23 expert tips

Jack Grealish in FIFA 23 (Image credit: EA)

On the subject of shooting, if you are a seasoned veteran, you may have noticed that the Power Shot button combination is the same as the low driven last year. 

This is because the Low Drivens / Low Shots button combination has been replaced by the Power Shot – but fear not, you can still do a low shot in FIFA 23. It's simple:  just hit any type of shot below 40% power and it becomes a low shot. This not only applies to normal shots, but also to finesse shots and power shots. 

Low Shots are perfect when shooting across goal and for those 1v1s.

10. How to take penalties in FIFA 23

Penalties have been completely revamped this year: there is now a composure ring, which contracts and expands depending on the penalty taker's composure. 

The key is to hit the penalty when the composure ring is at its smallest, giving your shot the greatest accuracy and power. Aiming a penalty in FIFA 23 has changed, too – there is no visual reticle and the aim does not re-centre if you let go of the left analog stick. The aim is set within the posts, and not beyond, so it’s almost virtually impossible to miss the target unless you apply near maximum power, or you miss time the composure ring. 

Make sure you shoot when the composure ring is at its smallest, apply about 90% power and aim the penalty at a corner, as this creates a high-powered shot that goes into the side netting, and normally with the right amount of power, making it difficult for the goalkeeper to save even if they dive the correct way.

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