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FIFA 23 Tips: NealGuides’ most effective FUT 23 formation

Written by Stakester
30 Sep, 2022

EA Sports’ FIFA 23 is here! Mechanics and gameplay have changed a bit since FIFA 22, so we’re detailing the best FUT 23 formation to kickstart your Ultimate Team.

When a new FIFA game releases, there are usually a few weeks of turbulence before the game reaches its final, polished form. In that time, people are getting to grips with the new mechanics of the game, so head to head matches can feel a lot slower. For that reason, it’s important to pick a starter squad that can deal well with that type of gameplay, and get you the most wins possible. So, here is NealGuides’ most effective FUT 23 formation, complete with custom tactics and player instructions!


This is a classic case of when in doubt, play the 4-4-2. With how slow everyone is playing now, and with the fact that a lot of people are still trying to figure out how to dribble effectively, the 4-4-2 META formation in FIFA 23 provides the balance needed to give you sufficient attacking and defensive ability.


Defensive style: press after possession loss – with the game being so slow, it’s difficult to press well. Having your team hardwired to press is only going to help you out. When you throw in the fact that you can use 5 subs to swap out your entire attack, it means you can afford to expend stamina by playing pressing football.

Width: set to 60 for more natural wide play.

Depth: set to 70 so that you can win the ball higher up the pitch.

The key takeaway from this defensive setup is that you’re going to be in a much better position to cope with slow early-game play.


Build up play: set this to ‘long ball’. With the META still being L1 triangle and power shot, having your team set to long ball ensures that your players are making forward runs for a fast build up.

Chance Creation: leave this on balanced! This is the most important aspect of offence early in FIFA 23, as it lets the game do a mixture of everything for you, and you can decide what works best for you. If you feel like you need to override the balanced setting, you can always use manual overrides e.g. double tap R1 for pass options.

Width: set up your team to play narrower with 40 width. The reason for this is because if you need to stretch your play, you can always enable ‘hug the sidelines’ in player instructions. But, if you play wider to begin with, there’s no way to change this so your players stay central in-game.

Players in the box: set to 7. 

Corners and freekicks: set to 1.

Player instructions

Strikers: set your pacier striker to stay forward and get in behind, but leave the other on balanced runs. This makes the most of the long ball META we spoke about earlier.

LM/RM: set to ‘come back on defence’, ‘get into the box for cross’ and ‘get in behind’. These instructions provide defensive support, but also enable lightning quick counters with L1 and triangle passes and driven passes.

CM(1): set to ‘stay back while attacking’, but also enable ‘get into the box for cross’. Make sure your more defensive midfielder has these instructions.

CM(2): leave this player with balanced attacking support, but also send them into the box for crosses.

LB/RB: set to ‘stay back while attacking, ‘overlapping runs’ and ‘conservative interceptions’.

CB: there is nothing fancy here, the main thing is you should be playing pacey players at CB so that you don’t get caught out on the high press. Yes, this means the more sweaty players of you have the green light to play fullbacks here…

That rounds out our formation and tactical setup for the early days of FIFA Ultimate Team 23, good luck!
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