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Here’s what the FUTmas Calendar SBCs do to the market

The SBCs were initially prohibitively expensive, but EA have cleverly bucked that trend.

EA Sports

Over the past week, EA Sports have released three distinct ‘FUTmas Calendar’ Squad Building Challenges every day at 7 p.m. ET (midnight GMT).

The daily SBCs have featured players who wear shirt numbers corresponding to the date the Challenge goes live. For example, on December 23rd, Arturo Vidal, Dani Alves, and Emre Can were all picked as they wear the No. 23 in real life.

You can check out the players who have been included so far here. Our friends over on the subreddit r/FIFA have also compiled a really cool list of possible SBCs if you haven’t seen it already.

This is a brand new feature to FUTmas and FIFA in general, as the now-wildly popular SBCs have just been introduced to this year’s version. However, the SBCs have also had the tendency to consistently wreak havoc on the market after being released.

The first few challenges during the FUTmas Calendar were too difficult to crash the market. On the 16th, EA released SBCs for Daniele De Rossi, Marco Parolo, and Stephane Ruffier, and get this — to get all three cards, you needed to trade in nine special cards. Two required just Team of the Week items, while De Rossi’s (which required four total) gave you the choice of picking between TOTW and Movember players.

Besides hardcore FUT enthusiasts (and people with disposable incomes), no one would’ve been able to afford that. Whatever impact it had on the prices of players was negligible.

But as of late, EA have tweaked the difficulty of at least two of the challenges. On the 20th, Layvin Kurzawa’s SBC was possibly one of the easiest ones FIFA will ever offer. You only needed one TOTW or Movember card (the lowest were roughly going for about 12k at the time) and 10 rare gold players. It didn’t even require a minimum squad rating.

From the 20th-23rd, the SBCs seemed to follow a new pattern. Eerily enough, the trend seems almost ripped off from this FIFA redditor’s suggestion:

r/FIFA

While there hasn’t exactly been an ‘easy’ challenge as Charlie_Wax suggested, EA have at least provided two medium-difficulty challenges. On the 21st, Kevin Gameiro and Ömer Toprak (both very good cards) were relatively easy to complete, while Dybala required a lot more coinage.

This has opened up a lot of opportunities for the casual FUT player, and frankly, made the SBCs a lot more fun. Fair play, EA.

This has also presented a newfound challenge because, well, the player market can be a pretty cruel place. Since the ‘easier’ challenges required a minimum squad rating of 84-85, the prices of players rated in the mid-80s have skyrocketed.

Just look at the uptick directly after the release!

FUTBIN

So folks, the lesson here is to either act fast, or play the waiting game. Over the past few days, the daily graph on FUTBIN has shown that the market does eventually calm down. But depending on what your timezone is, that may be anywhere between three in the morning or the middle of the workday.

This is exactly when you should not buy any players.
FUTBIN

The best strategy, in my opinion, would be to wait and check when the market is ‘calm’ — FUTBIN has this cool indicator below the graph that tells you the pace at which the market is moving — and stock up on low-cost, high-rated players like Mario Götze, Rui Patricio, William Carvalho, etc. The best time to buy would probably be the lull between the 7 p.m. ET (midnight GMT) releases.