Whilst in previous games tackling was an ever-dependable tactic to regain possession speedily, in FIFA 12 tackling is, as it should be, a last defence. You have to decide expertly when to stick out a leg. Mistime it fractionally and you’ll be left in the wake of a gloating winger as he scampers towards goal. So whenever possible, stay on your feet or you’ll get brutally punished.
Tactical defending schools you in the admittedly less glamourous part of the game. It rewards you for being more defensively minded, for marking your man, and for maintaining your shape while those around you lose theirs. And while that might not be as immediately exciting as dancing around defenders with Messi, it does significantly alter the tempo of matches. Games open up, allowing passages of play much closer to the real thing, and as consequence you can be much more creative going forward.