What can you do to improve your chances of keeping the ball out of the net when defending them?There are some tips we prepare for you.
Before kicking off your next online match and facing corners, head to the Customise menu and have a look at your Gameplay Assistance Settings. Here you can choose if you want the game to help you with player switching and, if so, how much assistance you’d like.
When the ball is on the ground I want total control over when to switch and who to, but when it’s in the air I find it handy to let the AI help – especially when defending crosses or corners – so I have Auto Switching set to Air Balls with Move Assistance on low. This means the AI will automatically give me control over the player closest to where the ball is going while it’s in the air, and will keep that player moving for a short
period of time so I can take manual control without there being any delay in his movement, which can prove vital when you’re trying to get to the ball before your opponent.
Personally I find this the most effective setting for dealing with corners, as there have been hundreds of times when that auto switch has helped me get to a header that I would otherwise have missed. It’s also great for defending lofted through balls, but that’s something we’ll cover in the near future. For now, let’s take a look at what else you can do to improve your chances of keeping that ball out of your net.
With the corner conceded your next job is to take manual control of your player who’s the best in the air. This will often be your tallest defender but it’s worth having a look through your squad before kick-off if you’re not especially familiar with the team you’re using, so you can spot and select him quickly while your opponent is setting up their corner kick. You’ll typically get only a few seconds to select the player and move him where you want him unless your opponent takes longer to aim the cross, so you’ve got to be quick.
Remember that, as well as the player change button, you can also select players by nudging the right stick in their direction, which is often more accurate so again saves you a moment or two.
With the best player selected, you now have to choose whether to try to man mark the opponent’s biggest aerial threat or defend a danger area.
If I notice an opponent taking that extra bit of time to aim corners, rather than quickly whipping them into the box as soon as the whistle has gone, or if they’re controlling the receiver in the box, then I go for the man marking method.
If I can spot the attacker with the biggest aerial threat and get my tallest or best defensive player close to them before the cross comes in then I increase my chances, even if it’s just ever so slightly, of preventing a free header at goal. More often than not I manage to get close enough to
make a difference.
If you do go for the man marking method then keep in mind that you always need to stay between the attacker and your goal, so take care not to run past them as you sprint out.
Defending danger areas
The alternative to man marking is a strategy similar to the zonal approach that we’ve seen highlighted so many times in analysis on TV. You can do something like this in game by selecting your most appropriate player as above then – instead of running toward an opposition player – positioning him to cover the danger areas, which in FIFA 15 are usually the front corner of the six-yard box closest to the corner taker or the area between the penalty spot and the six-yard box. If you have a tall defender with good jumping, strength and heading abilities then you should find you’re often able to clear the ball by taking up a position in these areas.
This is a good strategy to try when defending your first corner as you can get to those danger areas pretty quickly, so you’ll be prepared if the cross comes in straight away, and it’s a good idea to stick with it if you find the crosses always come in soon after the whistle has gone. This more zonal approach is also a good option if no opposing player really stands out as the biggest aerial threat.
I try to use the man marking approach when I can, as I feel that I win more headers with it, but that’s just personal preference. The zonal strategy may work better for you overall so give both a go.
Winning the header
When the cross comes over and you’re about to take off to battle for the ball, ALWAYS use the shoot button to head it. This tells your player to just clear it as far away from danger as quickly as he can, which doesn’t sound pretty but is much less risky than trying to nod the ball to a nearby team-mate by hitting the pass button.
If you only take one tip away from here today, make it this one, as it really is a very effective method of defending crosses and corners.
You can also use the shoot button to clear the ball away from danger with your feet, which again doesn’t exactly sound like total football but means you’re less likely to end up with your GK picking the ball out of his net. I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve defended the initial cross from a corner only to pass the ball straight to an opponent, but over the years it must be in the thousands. That doesn’t happen any more, because if I get possession in my box and I’ve got any doubts about being able to keep the ball, I hit shoot and clear it away.
Three quick tips
Firstly, concentrate on defending the corner first and worry about your attack once you’ve got the ball back. I often notice that, when I win a corner, my opponent will take control of a player that was in the box and run off towards my goal in anticipation of launching a counter. I don’t think this is a good idea as it just means the attacking team has more space in the most dangerous area of the pitch and, most likely, a spare man.
If your opponent uses a short corner tactic like the one we looked at last week, don’t automatically run towards the ball with the player you have selected – especially if he’s your best header of the ball. Keep your most effective defenders in the box and apply pressure on the ball with someone closer who perhaps isn’t as good in the air. When defending short corners it’s better to direct the opponent out towards the edge of your area than into it through the side closest to the corner, so hold your position there and be a barrier. If the attacker gets into your area from the near side then it’s much easier to create a scoring chance.
Finally, I hardly ever rush my keeper out when defending corners. I think it’s just too risky as you can never be sure you’ll get to the ball first and, if you do miss it, the attacker has an unguarded net to head the ball into. Personally I leave my keeper where he is and use the above methods to have a good go at getting the ball to safety.
These advices are much complete,I hope they would be useful to defend corners ,see more at fifa15-coins.com.