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The Best Team In The SSE Airtricity League As Selected By FIFA 16

The Best Team In The SSE Airtricity League As Selected By FIFA 16
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FIFA 16 is launched next week and as is now customary, the SSE Airtricity League is featured. You'll see plenty of coverage online about the top rated players overall but what about those here at home?

Instead of just listing the top players we've picked a team (playing 4-3-3) based on their ratings. We could only use the FIFA default position but we allowed RW/RM and LW/LM be interchangeable and we weren't picky about CAM, DM, CM, RM, LM etc. Without further ado, here's the best team in the SSE Airtricity League as selected by FIFA 16.


Barry Murphy has struggled to get into the Rovers team this season but he still has the highest rank of any keeper here with 61. That's one ahead of Brendan Clarke (St Patrick's Athletic) and Gary Rogers (Dundalk). We'll list all those rated at 60 and above for all positions but there's only 3 goalkeepers.

Right back

Simon Madden makes it 2 form 2 for Rovers and EA Sports might be right this time. He's ranked one ahead of Ger O'Brien (Pats) and, curiously, team-mate Maxime Blanchard who hasn't played a game at right back this season. Conor McCormack (Derry City), Derek Pender (Bohemians) and Alan Keane (Sligo Rovers) are all rated 60.

Left back

Ross Gaynor gets the nod here with his 62 being one ahead of Dane Massey (Dundalk) and 2 ahead of team-mate John Dunleavy, Ian Bermingham (Pats) and Luke Byrne (Rovers). We're not sure you'll get many in the league, including Cork City fans, who'd be picking Gaynor as the best left back in the league.

Centre backs

The highest rated centre back is Shamrock Rovers captain Conor Kenna on 62.  There are four centre halves rated 61; Kenny Browne (Pats), Andy Boyle (Dundalk), Gavin Peers (Sligo Rovers) and Alan Bennett (Cork City). We're going to pick Andy Boyle as his defensive rating of 62 is highest of that foursome. Jeff Henderson (Sligo), Roberto Lopes (Bohemians), Brian Gartland (Dundalk), Darren Dennehy and Dan Murray (both Cork) are the other centre halves to rate 60.



Richie Towell (rightfully) has the highest rating of any midfielder with 66. Only one behind him is recent Drogheda United recruit Keith Treacy (listed as LM). So these two are automatically in.  Next we have a decision.


Daryl Horgan (LM), Ronan Finn (CAM) (both Dundalk), Billy Dennehy (LM) and Liam Miller (CM) (both Cork) are all listed at 63. Dennehy's pace is listed at a ludicrous 93 so we'll discount that as a glitch and plump for Ronan Finn who's physicality (66) is listed as 6 more than Miller.


Daryl Horgan might not have made the middle three, but listed as LM we'll put him on the left wing with a rating of 63. On the other side is the highest rated player in the history of the League of Ireland in FIFA games; Damien Duff of Shamrock Rovers. Duff's rating of 72 is above the 68 that Keith Fahey had last season with St Pats and he's listed as a RW in this edition.


Other midfielders and wingers to be rated 62; Chris Shields (CM, Dundalk) Stephen McPhail (CM, Rovers), Colin Healy (CM, Cork) and Killian Brennan (CAM, Pats). On 61; Stephen O'Donnell (CM, Dundalk) and Sander Puri (RM, Sligo). On 60; Ian Morris (LM, Pats), Gary McCabe (RM, Rovers), Darren Meenan (RM, Dundalk), Patrick Cregg (CM, Rovers) and Ref Cretaro (RM, Sligo).


Christy Fagan has been injured for most of 2015 but EA Sports gives due props for his terrific 2014 season and has him the highest rated striker on 63 (Only Duff, Towell and Treacy are rated higher). One behind Fagan is Cork's Mark O'Sullivan. There are 4 strikers rated 60; Danny North, Mikey Drennan (both Rovers), Karl Sheppard (Cork) and Anthony Elding (Sligo).

So there you have it. That's the starting LOI XI that EA Sports would pick. How does it stack up against your best XI?


Some stats for you to argue over
To sum up the team is made up of 4 players each from Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers and 1 each from St Patrick's Athletic, Cork City and Drogheda United.

There are 48 players rated 60 or above (not including the recently emigrated Chris Forrester) and they're from;

  • 11 - Shamrock Rovers
  • 10 - Dundalk, Cork City
  • 7 - St Patrick's Athletic
  • 6 - Sligo Rovers
  • 2 - Bohemians
  • 1 - Drogheda United

The top rated player for each of the 12 Premier Division clubs;

  • Bohemians - 60 - Roberto Lopes/Derek Pender
  • Bray Wanderers - 58 - Peter Cherrie/David Cassidy
  • Cork City - 63 - Billy Dennehy/Liam Miller
  • Derry City - 60 - Conor McCormack
  • Drogheda United - 65 - Keith Treacy
  • Dundalk - 66 - Richie Towell
  • Galway United - 58 - Sam Oji/Ryan Connolly
  • Limerick - 58 - Lee Lynch/Shane Duggan
  • Longford Town - 58 - Stephen Rice
  • St Patrick's Athletic - 63 - Christy Fagan
  • Shamrock Rovers - 72 - Damien Duff
  • Sligo Rovers - 61 - Sander Puri/Gavin Peers

[FIFA 16 Ratings via Futhead]

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