The start of January is a really exciting time for football fans as transfer windows open across the globe. It’s also one of the most anticipated months for fans of FIFA 20 as the annual Team of the Year is released in FIFA Ultimate Team.
In the past, this was tied to the FIFA World XI, but now it is decided by a fan vote from the FIFA community. The most popular 11 players will then make up a special Team of the Year squad, which will include the highest-rated players in the game.
These players will remain the highest-rated players, even after Team of the Season squads are released in May and June.
Which players made the Team of the Year?
Set up in a 4-3-3 formation, the FIFA 20 Team of the Year is as follows:
Alisson Becker (Liverpool) – GK, 97
Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool) – RB, 95
Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool) – CB, 99
Matthijs de Ligt (Juventus) – CB, 96
Andy Robertson (Liverpool) – LB, 94
Kevin De Bruyne (Man City) – CAM, 98
Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona) – CM, 94
N’Golo Kante (Chelsea) – CDM, 97
Lionel Messi (Barcelona) – RW, 99
Kylian Mbappe (PSG) – ST, 98
Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – LW, 97
Full profiles of their relative cards.
GK: Alisson (Liverpool)
After beating out Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Ederson for the real-life FIFA Best Goalkeeper 2019 accolade, the Reds’ Brazilian stopper picks up the same honour in the digital realm. His key attributes comprise 97 overall, 97 diving, 97 reflexes, 95 positioning, 95 kicking and 92 handling.
RB: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)
The Liverpool love-in continues – but a quick glance at the Premier League table confirms that it’s very much justified. TAA’s 95-OVR card packs in ratings of 92 pace, 92 dribbling, 92 defending and a sublime 97 passing score. He’s truly a right-back and right-winger all in one. 
CB: Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)
A massive one, this: Liverpool’s back-four colossus becomes the first ever 99-rated TOTY defender. 88 pace, 99 defending and 98 physicality are the stats which leap out, but you can also enjoy 92 passing, 90 dribbling and 80 shooting. Pass the Dutchie? Good luck with that one. 
CB: Matthijs de Ligt (Juventus)
The first of two Ajax starlets featured on this list who’ve since moved on to elite clubs, van Dijk’s national team partner grabs a 96-OVR rated TOTY card. 96 defending, 96 physicality, 85 pace and 86 passing are the additional key stats for the superlative 20-year-old.
LB: Andy Robertson (Liverpool)
94 pace, 94 passing, 94 OVR: the former Hull City man scores a peach of a card after cementing himself as the world’s best left-back. Even his 75 shooting is just about passable, to go alongside scores of 92 defending, 91 dribbling, and 89 physicality. And we’re still not done with the Liverpool contingent…
CDM: N’golo Kante (Chelsea)
The lynchpin of Chelsea’s midfield added a World Cup winners’ medal to his ever-growing trophy haul in 2019, playing in every game as France cruised to victory at the greatest show on turf. Key stats here include 91 pace, 95 passing, 95 dribbling, 97 defending, 93 physicality, and 97 overall. 
CM: Frenkie de Jong (FC Barcelona)
Six months with Ajax, six months with Barcelona, almost all of them golden: the 22-year-old Dutchman continues to enhance his rep as an elite midfield all-rounder. A 94 OVR with 88 pace, 87 shooting, 93 passing, 95 dribbling and 90 physicality is the spectacular FIFA 20 TOTY result. 
CAM: Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)
Let’s at least feign surprise at this one. The best attacking midfielder on the planet earns an inevitable TOTY card, after another year shredding both Premier League and Champions League defences. A 98 OVR, plus 99 passing, 96 shooting, 96 dribbling and 93 physicality, will make your team sing. 
LW: Sadio Mané (Liverpool)
The Liverpool man’s close-to-perfect 2020 sees him nab the squad’s left-wing spot, with an OVR of 97. (Technically the ‘weakest’ of the three attackers, but that’s of little consequence when his card is this good.) You’re unlikely to be fussed by his 57 defending rating, and can instead wallow happily in wonder scores of 99 pace, 95 shooting, 92 passing, and 97 dribbling.
ST: Kylian Mbappé (Paris Saint-Germain)
98 overall, 99 pace, 98 dribbling, 96 shooting, 93 passing, 90 physicality: Mpabbe’s TOTY item is the pinnacle of striker cards, with him earning the illustrious number nine spot despite being outscored in 2019 by Bayern’s Robert Lewandowski. This will be an endgame card right the way through to FIFA 21.
RW: Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona)
As if little Leo were ever going to miss out on a spot in the FIFA 20 TOTY. As befits the greatest player in world football, his card ratings are exemplary: 99 passing, 99 dribbling, 98 shooting, 96 pace, and 85 physicality. It’s now the undisputed number one item on the FIFA 20 best players list, and should remain there until season’s end. 
How was Team of the Year decided?
The FIFA 20 Team of the Year was decided by a fan vote. Voting opened on the same day as the UK general election – Thursday, December 12, 2019 – and lasted eight days until Friday, December 20, 2019.
Fans picked 11 players from the shortlist of 55 players with this vote counting for 60 per cent of the overall selection and EA Sports themselves deciding the remaining 40%.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are usually guaranteed to make the team every year, although this year Ronaldo – who is assigned to the fake club Piemonte Calcio as EA Sports no longer have the rights to use Juventus’s team name or logo – failed to make the cut.
There is also a fan vote to add a 12th player to Team of the Year. When gamers log into their console, they can pick one of five one-game loan items to vote for the 12th player.
The nominees for the 12th player are Ronaldo, Robert Lewandowski, Hakim Ziyech, Raheem Sterling and Eden Hazard. The winner of this vote will be revealed and added to packs on Friday, January 10.

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