The game doesn't look as good as versions on the PS3 and 360, but it can hardly be expected to. The players can look a little lumpy close up (or is that just John Terry's real face?) and little things like the way the net bulges after a goal are far from correct, but compared to other football titles on the Wii, it's as good as it gets.
A major difference from the previous Wii outing is the option to play in manager mode, an absolute staple of FIFA that was strangely absent from 08. EA have corrected their mistake though, and now you can take control of your favourite team, control every aspect of team affairs from sponsorship to substitutions, and take the tabloid flak when it all goes wrong. It means that FIFA on the Wii is finally on a more level playing field and has the guts to keep football mad gamers satisfied.
However, that would all be in vain if the previously suspect controls hadn't changed, but fortunately, they have. Or rather, they've decided to do a bit of an impression of bitter rival PES, long thought to be the gameplay superior to FIFA's license monster.
There are the All-Play controls, offering an easy to get to grips with system for beginners, but you sacrifice a lot of control for this, and the Advanced Play controls are where it's at.
Using just the Wii remote, all you have to do to dribble is point the remote and off you go, twisting and turning as you move it. There's none of the slightly weird PES line-drawing to make runs, and passing couldn't be easier, picking a player out with the remote and simply tapping A to get it there. You can even choose to add in the Nunchuck or play with a GameCube or classic controller, giving endless options to cover all bases.
One problem here is that the choice of lofted ball or daisy cutter pass seems rather arbitrary, and sometimes you end up with the wrong choice through no fault of your own.
Shooting also borrows from PES with a shake to shoot mechanism, but it's smoother and simpler than before, even if doesn't always feel totally under your control. Still, it's a satisfying way to score a goal, and when the shake motion is used for free kicks, it's a very effective way to play set pieces that can drag on other systems.
Defending, which was hit and miss on FIFA 08, is now fully controllable, and you can jockey the player on the ball rather than relying on the game to do it for you. Again, it's not perfect, and selecting the nearest player to the attacker isn't as quick as it could be, often losing you a couple of vital seconds.
Another minus point is the lack of the Be A Pro Mode available on other versions, where players can control one pro through his career, adding even more longevity. It seems that the Wii will have to wait yet another year to catch up with this bit, although EA has included the custom tactics system.
These are fairly minor points though, and overall, FIFA has done a lot of growing up on the Wii over the last year, something few would have thought possible. It would be easy to dismiss it with the cutesy Miis and two games in one approach, but in spite of this, FIFA has been given what it needed to draw in the first timers and the old hands, snatching the title of best football game on the Wii with a last minute flick of the remote. See, Jimmy was right. It really is a funny old game...