He now returns to FIFA 22 as an Icon
EA Sports is getting ready for the release of FIFA 22 and that means the return of popular game mode Ultimate Team (FUT). One aspect which always attracts attention is the announcement of new Icons.
Icons are some of the best players in the history of football and every player has three versions called Stories. Each card reflects a particular time during their career.
They mirror a player’s position and statistics during the time.
A fourth version called Icon Moments tends to be released during the FIFA year and it is the player’s best version within the game.
Usually, Icons are some of the rarest and most expensive cards to purchase with in-game coins. But new ways to generate coins faster make them more accessible.
This means more gamers get to use some of their favourite players growing up in their own Ultimate Team.
Four new Icons have been added to FIFA 22 while new FUT Heroes make their debut in the upcoming release.
With the game releasing on October 1, 2021, we look at the new Icons and Heroes in more detail.
Compared to previous releases, there are fewer new Icons being added to FIFA 22, with just four.
But given that there are already 100 Icons to potentially play with, the four new additions will still make a massive impact within Ultimate Team.
The most-talked about Icon in FIFA 22 is undoubtedly Wayne Rooney.
The England legend burst onto the scene as a teenager while playing for Everton.
He went on to join Manchester United and the rest is history.
Rooney won five Premier League titles, three League Cups, an FA Cup, a UEFA Champions League, a UEFA Europa League and a FIFA Club World Cup.
He remains United’s record goalscorer.
Rooney is also England’s leading scorer.
He now returns to FIFA 22 as an Icon, with his Prime card rated 91. Meanwhile, his other two cards are rated 88 and 86 respectively.
Given that his cards range from attacking midfielder to striker, it is a testament to his playmaking and goalscoring ability.
It will be interesting to see what the rest of his stats look like as they could make Rooney one of the most expensive cards in FUT.
Robin van Persie
Another Premier League favourite returning is Dutch striker Robin van Persie.
The former Arsenal and Manchester United player was known as an efficient goalscorer with refined technical ability, which saw him score some incredible goals.
RVP started at Feyenoord and won the UEFA Cup at just 18-years-old.
FUT players will be excited to see van Persie as an Icon as they may be tempted to link him up with his former Arsenal teammate Thierry Henry, who is also an Icon in FIFA.
At Arsenal, van Persie scored 30 goals during the 2011-2012 season.
He joined Manchester United and won the Premier League.
For the Netherlands, he retired as the record scorer.
As an Icon in FIFA 22, van Persie may be the prolific striker that players are looking for.
A combination of high shooting and high dribbling could give any player the goalscoring advantage they need.
RVP is another Dutch Icon striker in FIFA 22 but he looks to be the best.
Real Madrid fans will get a true club legend in Iker Casillas when he becomes an Icon in FIFA 22.
The Spanish goalkeeper is rated 87, 89 and 92 and given that reflexes tend to be an important FIFA stat, Casillas may be a FUT addition that could make that matchwinning save.
He is Real Madrid‘s most successful goalkeeper, having risen through the ranks since joining the youth team in 1990.
Casillas was a major part of some of Madrid’s greatest ever sides, playing alongside fellow legends like Sergio Ramos, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo and many others.
During his 25 years at Real Madrid, Casillas won three UEFA Champions Leagues, three FIFA Club World Cups, two UEFA European Super Cups, five LaLiga trophies, two Copa del Rey and four Spanish Super Cups.
For Spain, Casillas won the World Cup and two UEFA European Championships.
With such an illustrious career, Casillas is worthy of being a FIFA Ultimate Team Icon.
For several years, Cafu has been a requested Icon. Now in FIFA 22, he will be one.
The Brazilian has a Prime rating of 93, highlighting how highly regarded he was as a player.
However, his high ratings and incredible stats indicate that Cafu will be an expensive Icon in FIFA 22.
The right-back enjoyed a stint in LaLiga but his time at AC Milan saw him win the Serie A title and UEFA Champions League.
For the Brazil national team, Cafu is the most-capped player with 142 appearances.
Cafu is also the only player in the final of three World Cups, winning two of them in 1994 and 2002.
They are a unique set of honours and Cafu looks to be a solid Icon choice.
FUT Heroes are all-new for FIFA 22 and they celebrate some of football’s most memorable players.
These are new items that represent the unforgettable moments that turned them into fan favourites.
FUT Heroes have unique league-specific chemistry which is tied to their specific hero moment, providing a green Club link to any player within the same league as well as the usual nation link.
This gives players new ways to build their dream squad.
At his peak, Mario Gomez was one of the most prolific strikers in the world, scoring more than 200 goals for some of the biggest clubs in Germany’s top division.
While he played for the likes of Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg, Gomez is best known for his stints at Stuttgart.
One highlight included Gomez setting up the goal that won Stuttgart their third Bundesliga title.
With an 88 rating, Mario Gomez looks to be a quality FUT Hero.
Popular player Tim Cahill was known for his time at Everton and his goalscoring ability.
While he was lethal with his heading technique, Cahill also had a wide range of finishes, including an overhead kick in 2007.
The Australian is 85 rated in FIFA 22 and with his stats, Cahill looks like a good player to add to your Ultimate Team during the first few months of the game.
Despite scoring over 50 goals in just over 100 appearances in LaLiga, Diego Milito’s ability went under the radar.
His talents were not noticed until he joined Inter Milan.
The Argentine striker is known for his performance during the 2010 UEFA Champions League final where he scored two goals.
Milito was a pure striker in an era where the role of a striker was changing.
The 88 rated FUT Hero has stats to suit players who are not bothered about fancy tricks and only care about putting the ball in the back of the net.
Liga BBVA MX
Jorge Campos is a goalkeeper from the 1990s and was a memorable player.
He played a high-risk game as a sweeper-keeper, often found outside his box, in colourful kits of his own creation and never caught off-guard.
Campos kept a clean sheet in the second leg of Pumas’ title-winning match in 1991.
Although Campos is not in one of the main leagues within Ultimate Team, his fans may want to use his 87 rated card.
While Fernando Morientes may be a familiar name among Liverpool supporters, his memorable time in LaLiga is why his FUT Hero card is Spain-based.
Morientes was a regular on the scoresheet for both club and country.
He was not the fastest player but he had the strength to hold the ball up for his teammates.
These traits are highlighted in his stats, offering 84 pace, 90 shooting and 86 physicality. These stats are housed in an 89 rated card.
MBS Pro League
Sami Al-Jaber scored over 200 goals in a successful career and played for Saudi Arabia in four World Cups.
In 2006, his goal against Tunisia made him one of the only players to score in three World Cup tournaments.
His heroics on the pitch have now seen Al-Jaber become a FUT Hero.
This 86 rated card is an effective choice for those looking for a pacey striker.
One of the Premier League’s best-known strikers is Robbie Keane.
Whilst playing for some of the league’s best teams, Keane scored over 120 goals.
He was a striker who could cause trouble for any defence.
In FIFA 22, his rating is 86 which may not seem like much but his stats suggest Keane is better than what his rating says.
As a result, it is likely that his FUT card will be pricey.
For those who get their hands on him, it might be fun to link the former Tottenham striker with current forward Harry Kane.
He is regarded as Ghana’s most talented player, so much so that he was nicknamed ‘Pele’ after the Brazilian legend.
Abedi Pele played for Marseille during the 1990s and was one of the best attacking midfielders in the league.
He would prove this in the 1993 UEFA Champions League final, where he assisted in the winning goal, immortalising himself in Marseille – and in football history.
In FIFA 22, his 89 rated card may be a popular choice for those who want to link Abedi Pele with the likes of Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe as well as FUT Icon Michael Essien.
No matter what league he played in, Clint Dempsey gave it 100%.
The American was a prolific goalscorer, with Dempsey joint top scorer for the national team, alongside Landon Donovan.
Dempsey returned to the MLS with Seattle Sounders and scored 47 league goals in 115 games.
He now has an 85 rated FUT Hero card with well-rounded stats, making him an effective player to utilise as an attacking midfielder or striker.
Lars Ricken was an important figure in the dominant Borussia Dortmund side of the 1990s.
The German midfielder is known for scoring in the 1996-1997 UEFA Champions League final just 16 seconds after coming on the pitch.
It remains the fastest goal scored by a substitute in Champions League history.
Ricken now enters FIFA 22 as an 85 rated FUT Hero.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
One of Manchester United’s most popular players and now manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was known as a clinical super-sub striker.
The baby-faced assassin was always ready to finish off the tiring opposition.
His goal in the 1999 UEFA Champions League final is a legendary moment as it clinched a historic treble for the Red Devils.
An 86 rated card in FIFA 22 looks to be an effective super-sub in Ultimate Team.
Antonio Di Natale
Antonio Di Natale may be the most sought after, and expensive, FUT Hero card when FIFA 22 releases.
He was known for his combination of speed, dribbling and finishing. This is reflected in his 88 rated card.
Di Natale’s best year may have come in 2010. That year, he scored a fantastic hat-trick against Lecce leaving Udinese fans buzzing.
He followed up that feat with another hat-trick – this time against Napoli. Di Natale was the leader of a Udinese side who dared to dream.
The decorated Colombian Ivan Cordoba led several domestic and European challenges for Inter Milan with his defensive work.
He led at the back, with a robust style that was typical of Inter’s treble-winning side in 2010.
In 2008, against Reggina, in a hard-fought match which looked destined for a draw, it was Cordoba’s last-minute winner that placed him in Inter’s folklore.
In Ultimate Team, Cordoba has an 87 rated card with 86 pace. High pace looks to be prevalent among centre backs in FIFA 22.
Freddie Ljungberg was a key part of Arsenal’s iconic unbeaten Premier League season.
His skill and technical play on the wing saw him spellbind fans in the Premier League.
The FA Cup final of 2002 saw Ljungberg add his standout piece in a long highlights reel. Running at the Chelsea defence, he jinked past his opponents before slotting the ball in the top corner.
Ljungberg has an 86 rated left midfield card in FIFA 22.
Jurgen Kohler is regarded as one of the best defenders of his generation.
With domestic titles in Germany and Italy playing for some of the biggest clubs, it was the 1997 UEFA Champions League win with Borussia Dortmund that made him a club hero.
Kohler’s leadership inspired his team to go all the way and win the famous trophy.
An 89 rated card is fitting of his heroics.
Popular Liverpool goalkeeper Jerzy Dudek was one of many heroes during the 2005 Champions League final against AC Milan.
He conceded three goals in the first half but the team fought back to 3-3.
The game went to penalties where Dudek made the match-winning penalty save against Andriy Shevchenko.
An 86 rated Premier League card links Dudek with some of the league’s best defenders.
Aleksandr Mostovoi made a name for himself at Celta Vigo and was nicknamed ‘El Zar’ (The Tzar) by the fans.
He quickly became one of Europe’s best playmakers.
Taking Celta to an Intertoto Cup win and a Copa Del Rey final, Mostovoi’s exploits hit a peak in 2003 where two goals against Real Sociedad took Celta Vigo into the Champions League.
His 86 rated FUT Hero is one for those looking to improve their creative chances in FIFA 22.
Joe Cole was one of the most gifted players of his generation.
Whether he was playing centrally or on the wing, his trickery and vision had defenders struggling.
Cole was part of a Chelsea side that won the Premier League in 2006.
His traits are replicated in his 87 rated card, featuring 90 dribbling and 88 pace.
David Ginola looks to be a FUT Hero card to go for as his high pace and dribbling are combined with the fact that he links with Ligue 1 and France’s best players on Ultimate Team.
He made a name for himself playing for some of Europe’s biggest sides in the 1990s.
Part of a flair-packed, gifted Paris Saint-German side, Ginola experienced many high points under the lights of the Parc des Princes.
But his thunderbolt strike against Real Madrid in the 1993 Champions League put him on the map of the global game.
These new Icons and Heroes will change the way you play Ultimate Team.
The additions provide more opportunities to create unique teams.
But some will be better than others and therefore more expensive.
However, the wide plethora of former players to choose from will make Ultimate Team squads more diverse when FIFA 22 comes out.