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The ultimate guide to dribbling in FIFA 21

© EA
It's not just about getting the ball in the back of the net
Written by Vikki BlakePublished on
It's tempting to think that FIFA matches are won – or lost – by banging that ball into the back of the net, but ask any seasoned FIFA fan and they'll tell you that the actions in the lead-up to that all-important goal kick matter just as much.
That's why it's critical to get to grips with dribbling in FIFA sooner rather than later. With every new FIFA game dribbling has felt ever more fluid and ever more intuitive, but that doesn't mean you can just leave it to lady luck. So here's everything you need to know to best control the ball in FIFA 21, including FIFA 21's new Agile Dribbling feature. Let's get started...

Basic Controls for FIFA 21

It'll take a little while to get used to the various combos you'll need to top the league, so here's a breakdown of FIFA 21's control scheme and combinations (thanks, FIFPlay.com).
ActionPlayStation controlsXbox/PC controls
Move / Dribble / Carry the ballLL
Protect BallL2LT
Skill MovesRR
Simple Skill Moves (VOLTA Football only)L2 + R2 + L + DirectionLT + RT + L + Direction
Simple Flicks (VOLTA FOOTBALL only)R3 + L + DirectionR3 + L + Direction
Taunts (VOLTA FOOTBALL only)L + no direction + R2 Hold DownL + no direction + R2 Hold Down
Sprint / Fast DribbleR2 Hold Down + DirectionRT Hold Down + Direction
Slow Dribble (11v11 Only)L2 + R2 + L + DirectionLT + RT + L + Direction
Face Up DribblingL2 + R2LT + RT
Strafe DribbleL1 + LLB + L
Strafe Dribble (Lock Face Angle)L1 + R1 + LLB + RB + L
Let Ball RunR1 Press and Hold + L (Away From Ball)RB Press and Hold + L (Away From Ball)
Shield/JockeyL2 Hold Down + DirectionLT Hold Down + Direction
First Touch/Knock-OnR2 + R + DirectionRT + R + Direction
Stop BallR2 + no directionRT + no direction
Jostle (Ball In Air)L2LT
Stop and Face GoalL + no direction + L1L + no direction + LB
Disguised First TouchR1 Press and Hold + L (Towards Ball)RB Press and Hold + L (Towards Ball)
Set Up TouchR1 + R + Direction (Hold)RB + R + Direction (Hold)
Fake PassSquare then X + directionX than A + direction
Fake ShotCircle then X + directionB then A + direction
Time Your ShotCircle + circle (timed)B + B (timed)
Dummy a PassL + no direction + R1 Press and HoldL + no direction + RB Press and Hold
Trigger RunL1LB
Call for SupportR1RB
CancelL2 + R2LT + RT
To get started, prioritise carrying and protecting the ball, and mastering slow and fast dribbling. Skill moves, too, can make all the difference when you're under pressure on the pitch.

Agile Dribbling in FIFA 21

FIFA 21.jpg
FIFA 21.jpg
Agile Dribbling is new to FIFA 21. Developer EA says it's inspired by some of the best dribblers in the world, and is intended to give you the ability to quickly move the ball from side to side to get away from enemy defenders and create space and opportunities.
EA suggests that to perform Agile Dribbling, hold R1/RB while moving the Left Stick, and you will notice the dribbler moving the ball with rapid and precise touches. Every player in the game can use Agile Dribble, however, "the higher a player's Dribbling, Agility, Reactions, and Ball Control attributes, the quicker, more precise, and better they will be at keeping the ball at their feet".
There's also Contextual Agile Dribbling, too. Though optional, it makes your players automatically use Agile Dribbling when required, but you can turn it off in the options if you'd rather assume complete control of the on-pitch action.

Practice makes perfect

Which one's your favourite?
A glimpse of a FIFA 21 FUT screen... are you excited?
If you're a little overwhelmed by the controls above, don't panic. The more you play, the better your muscle memory, but if you need a little extra time to get accustomed to the various combos, head to the Practice Arena. It's the best way to sneak in a little practise before you head into the stadiums for real.
Keep an eye on the stats of your players, too. Agility, Ball Control, and Dribbling are all attributes detailed on your players' stats, and the higher these attributes are rated, the better they are at Agile Dribbling. Prioritise recruiting at least a couple of players with good DRI stats to boost your team's ability to retain the ball.
FIFA 21 is out now on PC, Nintendo Switch, PS4, and Xbox One.