FIFA 20 Guide: Learn The D-Pad Tactics

Learn more about D-Pad Tactics
Learn more about D-Pad Tactics Electronic Arts

If you're playing FIFA 20, then you've probably heard of D-Pad Tactics. If you're new to video gaming, the D-pad refers to the directional pad or control pad, and this is the flat and thumb-operated four-way directional control that has one button on each point.

Ever since this method has been introduced in the game, there have been questions on how to make the best of it. Today we look at how to go about using D-Pad Tactics in FIFA 20.

Activating the D-Pad Tactics

Let's start with knowing how to activate the D-Pad tactics. It's actually simple since when you play a match, you already have the abilities to attack and defend using these tactics. For the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, all that needs to be done is to press up on the D-pad and the tactics related to attacking are displayed. Pressing down, meanwhile, shows the defending tactics. For the PC, pressing the up arrow displays the attacking tactics while the down arrow is for the defending tactics.

When activated, whether for attacking or defending, a menu having four options is shown. Press any direction of the D-Pad to activate the corresponding tactic. It is possible to mix and match D-Pad tactics to find the one that best suits you.

Once activated, the D-Pad Tactics remains in effect until turned off. To turn the feature off, all you need to do is simply perform the same operation that was done to activate it.

Attacking Tactics

That said, let's take a look at the attacking tactics and how to activate them.

  • Attacking Full Backs
    • d-pad up → d-pad left
    • What this does is to move your Full Backs to a more advanced position until you lose possession. The same Full Backs push forward in a manner similar to how a Wing Back pushes forward in some five defender formations.
    • This tactic is used to get that extra width when you are in possession of the ball. This gives you the opportunity to have different attacking options. The disadvantage is that when Full Backs attack, it leaves a lot of space open behind them.
  • ​Get In The Box
    • d-pad up → d-pad up
    • This tactic lets you maximize the number of players that try to get inside the box, especially when you're in a crossing situation.
    • The thing to remember is that these tactics offer a significant impact to attacking, but using it leaves you exposed to counter attacks especially when you lose possession.
  • Hug Sideline
    • d-pad up → d-pad right
    • Hug Sideline helps increase the width of your team's wide players. What this means is that they are likely to play closer to the sidelines. Wide Players include Wingers, Full Backs, and Wing Backs.
    • This tactic is good when you want your goal kick to be wide. Activating this before taking your kick means that the wide players are now going to spread out.
  • Extra Attacker
    • d-pad up → d-pad down
    • The tactic increases you attack by having an additional player.
    • The thing to remember is that this tactic takes into consideration the attacking attributes as well as the instructions received. It also weighs these factors during the player selection phase.
      • So for instance your CDM has been set to Stay Back When Attacking. The chances of that player being chosen as Extra Attacker is low.

Defending Tactics

Of course it's not all attacking, as you also need to have defending tactics.

  • Overload Ball Side
    • d-pad down → d-pad left
    • This defense tactic lets you have a more compact defense by lowering the width of your team.
    • As long as this tactic is active, your team shape is going to always shift towards the ball. This means they ignore the defensive player instruction as well as the marked opposition players.
    • You can always try to control your half's middle area but you are open to wide attacks.
  • Striker Drop Back
    • d-pad down → d-pad up
    • This tactic makes you Striker help the team by functioning more like a midfielder.
    • If there are more than one Striker in play, the tactic takes into account the defensive work rates and marking attribute. It then chooses which players is to be dropped back.
  • Team Press
    • d-pad down → d-pad right
    • This tactic is the same as what happens when you set your Custom Tactic Defensive Style to “Constant Pressure.” What this does is to have your AI controlled teammates always pressure your opponents.
    • One disadvantage of using this defending tactic is that the players on your team lose a lot more stamina than usual since they are going to cover more ground.
  • Offside Trap
    • d-pad down → d-pad down
    • Offside Trap makes your defenders immediately push as one unit with the goal of being able to catch an attacker offside.
    • Take extra care when activating Offside Trap, since using it at the wrong moment can lead to easy breakaways.

With these tactics, hopefully you have better control of your team's actions. Practice is key, so familiarize yourself with these different tactics before going against other players.

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