Gameplay: I really like gameplay this year, but a couple of changes could make it great.
First, that hesitation (or whatever you want to call it) drives me crazy. You know the one I mean? Where your player is on the ball, you press pass/shoot at just the right moment, but it seems like your controller has disconnected for a couple of seconds and then the opportunity passes by. It has cost me goals on both ends of the pitch numerous times.
Second, the stray passes. It happens way too often, where a very simple pass gets smacked out of bounds, even though I have the setting on manual passing power and I've only lightly tapped the button.
Lastly, AI teammates are still just awful. They just refuse to react to the ball. Couple that with the poor player switching and I've given up way too many goals that were very preventable.
AI Squad Management:
They don't replace their players well. Its just not realistic to see Liverpool or Man U playing with a 60 something rated player years down the road in career mode. They need to replenish better, and I think they need to have a youth squad setup to achieve that. Every team should start with a youth academy, and the better the club, the better the scouts are at first. Its crazy to look at Real Madrid's squad 5 years into career mode and see that they don't have a single player under the age of 22.
This needs an overhaul. Youth scouting is what brings me some Fifa coins. I love taking a low division team, building up the academy, and the winning trophy's with these players. But the current setup needs some work. Players that come out are not realistic at all. Their are almost always poor physically, and they never grow in this area much at all. Its hard to play with a whole team of players with 50s and 60s for their physical stats.
Someone in another thread proposed a better growth system that would be way more realistic. Physical stats should be high coming out of the academy, and should be the primary area of growth when a player is 16-19 years old. Then from 19-25, technical stats should be the primary area of growth, with mental growing slowly as well. Then, from 25-30, mental stats should grow fastest, with technical growing slowly. After 30, physical should drop quickly, and mental should still grow slowly. That would be a way better setup.
We should also have a U21 or reserves team at our disposal. It sucks to have 17 year old players sitting on the reserves, not playing, and then complaining about wanting to leave because they don't play. A U21 team could solve this, and then complaints about moving to the senior squad could start when a player is 20-21 years old, instead of having unhappy teenagers who aren't good enough to make the senior side.
These few small fixes would make career mode much better for me.