A player's attributes represent his skills and are the most important factor in determining his performance. They are split into three categories on each player's Profile screen. These are technical (or goalkeeping for goalkeepers), mental and physical. Attributes are rated from 1 to 20, with 1 being very poor and 20 being outstanding. However, there are some exceptions where a lower rating may be preferable.
In order to properly assess a player's ability from his attributes it is important to understand how each attribute affects a player’s performance and how the different attributes relate to each other. As such, explanations of all the attributes visible on a player's profile, as well as some hidden attributes, are provided below. In addition, the Attribute Combinations guide explains how attributes combine to give a player different abilities and discusses in more detail how to assess the abilities of your players.
Aerial Ability - How high a goalkeeper's hands can reach when jumping.
Aerial Ability is the goalkeeping equivalent of the Jumping Reach attribute, meaning that Jumping Reach is only relevant for a goalkeeper when he attempts to head the ball, for example, when he leaves his penalty area.
Command Of Area - How likely a goalkeeper is to attempt to claim aerial balls played into the box.
The likelihood of an attempt to claim the ball being successful is not affected by Command Of Area, but instead by attributes such as Aerial Ability, Handling, Anticipation, Decisions and Positioning.
Communication - How well a goalkeeper can communicate with defenders and organise the defence.
Higher Communication means that there will be more stability in your defence and less mistakes made.
Eccentricity - How likely a goalkeeper is to perform unexpected and risky actions.
Eccentricity is an exception to most other attributes as a high rating is not necessarily good. Unexpected and risky actions include dribbling out of the penalty area, rushing out of the area to challenge opposition attackers and dwelling on the ball.
Handling - How well a goalkeeper can hold on to the ball when attempting to catch it.
Higher Handling reduces the likelihood of the ball being dropped or parried, potentially giving the opposition a goal-scoring opportunity or corner. It is particularly useful in wet weather conditions.
Kicking - How far a goalkeeper can kick the ball
The accuracy of kicks is not affected by Kicking, but instead by Passing (hidden for goalkeepers) and Technique (visible below the physical attributes). The creativity attributes Anticipation, Decisions, Teamwork and Vision also affect the effectiveness of a goalkeeper's passing and kicking.
One on Ones - How well a goalkeeper can deal with one-on-one situations against opposition attackers.
Reflexes - How well a goalkeeper can react to shots.
Rushing Out - How well a goalkeeper can decide whether to run forward to try to claim loose balls and opposition passes close to his penalty area.
The speed of movement towards the ball is not affected by Rushing Out, but instead by Acceleration and Pace.
Anticipation, Composure, Concentration and Decisions also affect how well a decision is made whether to rush out.
Tendency To Punch - How likely a goalkeeper is to choose to punch when dealing with an aerial ball that is potentially catchable.
Anticipation, Composure, Concentration and Decisions also affect how well a decision is made whether to punch or catch.
Higher Tendency To Punch can cause a goalkeeper to put more pressure on your defence by not catching the ball. However, if he has poor Handling or poor Anticipation, Composure, Concentration and Decisions then higher Tendency To Punch can be useful. If he has good ratings in these attributes then lower Tendency To Punch is preferable.
Throwing - How accurately a goalkeeper can throw the ball to teammates.
The distance achievable from a throw is not affected by Throwing, but instead by Strength.
Corners - How accurately a player can deliver a corner kick to his intended target area.
Other attributes that are useful for taking a corner are given in the Set Pieces guide.
Crossing - How accurately a player can cross the ball from wide into the opposition penalty area to his intended target.
Dribbling - How well a player can control the ball while running with it.
Finishing - How accurately a player can shoot at his intended target area of the goal.
First Touch - How well a player can control the ball and set it up for his next action when receiving it.
Free Kick Taking - How accurately a player can deliver a free kick either indirectly to his intended target area or directly into his intended target area of the goal.
Other attributes that are useful for taking a free kick are given in the Set Pieces guide.
Heading - How accurately a player can head the ball to his intended target area.
Long Shots - How accurately a player can shoot at his intended target area of the goal from outside the opposition penalty area.
Long Throws - How far a player can throw the ball at throw-ins and how accurately he can deliver a long throw to his intended target area.
Other attributes that are useful for taking a long throw are given in the Set Pieces guide.
Marking - How well a player can take up a position close to an opposition player that makes him a less viable passing option.
Passing - How accurately a player can pass the ball to his intended target.
Penalty Taking - How accurately a player can take a penalty kick.
Other attributes that are useful for taking a penalty are given in the Set Pieces guide.
Tackling - How well a player can take the ball from an opposition player without committing a foul.
Technique - How well a player can perform more challenging technical actions when he is on the ball.
More challenging technical actions include long passes, long shots, volleys (kicking the ball while it is in the air), curling the ball, controlling a difficult ball and using complicated dribbling moves (tricks).
Aggression - How likely a player is to choose to get involved in a physical situation and how much he exerts physical force in such situations.
Physical situations include attempting to tackle an opposition player, marking an opposition player and competing with an opposition player to get to the ball.
The likelihood of violent or other unsporting behaviour is not directly affected by Aggression, but instead by the hidden attributes Dirtiness and Sportsmanship.
However, higher Aggression does make fouls more likely to be commited as a result of greater involvement in physical situations. Therefore, a player with higher Aggression would benefit from good Tackling, Anticipation, Concentration and Decisions so that he is less likely to commit fouls.
Anticipation - How well a player can predict the movements and other actions of his teammates and opposition players.
Higher Anticipation enables a player to react more quickly to events. When he is off the ball though, his initial position will also affect how well he reacts. Off The Ball and Positioning affect how well a player positions himself off the ball.
Bravery - How willing a player is to choose to perform an action that risks pain or injury.
Lower bravery makes a player more likely to avoid performing what he believes is the best action for the team in certain situations due to fear of the possible physical consequences for himself.
Composure - How unaffected a player is by mental pressure when making a decision or performing his chosen action.
Mental pressure can be caused by opposition players, such as when a player is closed down, or by the importance of a situation, such as when a player has a clear goal-scoring opportunity.
Mental pressure causes a player to both make a poorer decision and perform his chosen action less accurately. Higher Composure reduces this effect.
Concentration - How unaffected a player is by lost focus when making a decision.
A player gradually loses focus during a match and the more his focus falls the more likely he is to make a poorer decision. Higher Concentration reduces the rate at which his focus falls.
Decisions - How well a player can evaluate the options he is aware of and choose which action to perform, when to perform it and how to perform it.
Decisions is the most important attribute involved in decision making. However, a player's ability to make an effective decision is limited by the options he is aware of, which is affected by Vision.
Determination - How much a player tries to succeed in his actions during a match even in mentally exhausting circumstances.
Mentally exhausting cirmcumstances include when a player's team is losing and when he is performing badly.
Flair - How likely a player is to choose to perform an unexpected action when he is on the ball.
An unexpected action is one that an opposition player is less likely to anticipate, such as a trick, and is therefore harder to defend against.
Leadership - How inspirational and motivational a player is to his teammates.
Leadership is the most important attribute to consider when choosing a captain. Further attributes and other factors to consider are discussed in the Appointing a Captain guide.
Off The Ball - How well a player moves and positions himself, to either provide a passing option or create space for teammates to exploit, when he is off the ball and his team is in possession.
Off The Ball is the attacking equivalent of Positioning.
A player who is off the ball may create space for a teammate by moving into an area that encourages an opposition player to move out of position in order to track him.
Positioning - How well a player moves and positions himself, in order to deal with an opposition attack, when he is off the ball and the opposition team is in possession.
Positioning is the defensive equivalent of Off The Ball.
Teamwork - How closely a player follows his tactical instructions and how aware he is of the positions and movements of his teammates.
Players with higher Teamwork will play better as a unit, while a player with lower Teamwork will make more selfish decisions, such as shooting at goal instead of passing to a teammate in a better position.
Vision - How well a player observes the options available to him when he is on the ball.
Higher Vision means a player is likely to be aware of more options and so can potentially make more effective decisions. However, his decision making attributes, such as Decisions, affect how well he chooses between the options he is aware of.
Work Rate - How much physical effort a player puts into his actions during a match.
Acceleration - How quickly a player can reach his maximum speed when running.
Agility - How well a player can start, stop, and move in a new direction.
Balance - How well a player can stay steady on his feet when he is under physical pressure.
Physical pressure is caused by opposition players trying to get to the ball ahead of a player or trying to win the ball from him, and can occur when a player is moving or stationary.
Jumping Reach - How high a player's head can reach when jumping.
A player's height only affects whether he needs to jump and how much effort he needs to put into a jump, but is particularly important when a player is competing with an opposition player to get to an aerial ball. Taller players tend to have higher Jumping Reach due to their height advantage.
Natural Fitness - How well a player can retain condition when injured or not training, recover condition between matches, gain match fitness when playing matches and avoid jadedness caused by matches and training. Also how well a player is able to retain his physical attribute ratings as he ages.
Condition, match fitness and jadedness are discussed in more detail in the Player Fitness guide.
Other factors also affect how well a player retains his attribute ratings as he ages such as his Professionalism personality attribute and the amount of competitive match time he is given. Notably though, a player with higher Natural Fitness (as well as higher Stamina and lower Injury Proneness) will be capable of spending more time playing matches.
Pace - How fast a player can run when he has reached his maximum speed.
A player is able to run slightly faster without the ball than with it.
Stamina - How well a player can retain condition while exerting effort during a match.
The higher a player's condition is, the better he will perform any action. The more effort a player puts in during a match the more his condition will fall. Higher Stamina reduces this effect.
Condition is discussed in more detail in the Player Fitness guide.
Strength - How well a player is able to exert physical force on an opposition player.
Strength affects how likely a player is to succeed in a physical situation such as when shielding the ball from an opposition player while standing or dribbling, when attempting to tackle an opposition player, when marking an opposition player and when competing with an opposition player to get to the ball.
In addition to the visible attributes discussed above and the personality attributes discussed in the Player Personalities guide, a player has six hidden attributes for which his ratings are unknown. However, your coaches and scouts will refer to each of the hidden attributes for which they believe a player has a particularly good or poor rating in the pros and cons shown on the player's coach or scout report.
Adaptability - How well a player settles in a new country.
If you are considering signing a foreign player based in another nation, especially if he has never played in your club's nation before, then you should check for any mention of Adaptability on his scout reports.
Consistency – how likely a player is to perform to his full ability in any particular match.
Consistency only affects technical and mental attributes. Therefore, players with better physical attributes are less affected by poor Consistency.
Dirtiness – how likely a player is to try to break the rules to gain an advantage.
Higher Dirtiness makes fouls more likely to be commited. It is referred to as Competitive Streak on a player's coach or scout reports.
Important Matches – how well a player performs in big, high pressure games.
Injury Proneness – how likely a player is to suffer an injury during a match or in training.
A player's Injury Proneness can be judged by viewing his past injuries on the Injuries section of his History tab. Injury Proneness is discussed in more detail in the Player Fitness guide, along with other factors that affect how likely a player is to suffer an injury.
Versatility – how well a player plays in a position for which he lacks familiarity.
A player's familiarity in each position can be seen on the Information section of his Overview tab.