After a lot of barking during the off-season, we find ourselves with familiar faces in the top half of the table. Viva Futbol has shown that they are still the club to beat and American Outlaws has continued their impressive form this FIFA. It is no surprise now that AO’s title run last ACL season was no fluke. Here is your ACL XV mid-season recap/predictions! 1) Viva Futbol Surprise, surprise! Viva Futbol is once again proving their dominance in ACL. After last seasons upset they have seem to come to life to show everyone that they can win when they want to. The only problem that is facing Viva right now is the NBA 2k league they play in. My sources quoted Ramani vF saying, “All they do is play that stupid NBA game. We never practice!” With the addition of Dylshkin67 x, it was no shock that this offense would be tough to stop and it has definitely translated in to the season where Viva is the highest scoring team with 42 goals in just 23 games. If Dylshkin can keep his schedule open and show up to the remaining games, Viva may have this ACL title on lock. Key Player: Aztecas vF – Another season where Aztecas is playing CB but has the scoring rate of a striker. Not only that but he has also done his work defensively by keeping 17 clean sheets in 23 games. He may not need to do all the scoring but it takes a lot of pressure off your back when you know you have Aztecas in the box on a corner to get a crucial goal in a late game situation. 2) Rare Footage This team is starting to become known for their excellent regular season form. Only time will tell if they can translate their regular season dominance in to a deep playoff run. rF Dybala has been carrying the offensive load for this team but he may have some help now with the addition of rF Kluivert (Unlucky AfriAss) in the mid season transfer window. Key Player: rF Kluivert – It is not often where a mid-season pick up becomes one of the most crucial pieces of your team but Kluivert has already racked up 7 goals and 6 assists in just 12 games! He will need to keep up that production if this team is finally going to do itself justice and make a title run. 3) American Outlaws Yes, the joke is over now. American Outlaw’s title was no fluke. This team has continued their dominance in ACL and are currently sitting pretty in third. AO has a fairly tough remaining schedule and they will hope to close out the season strong so they can finish as one of the top seeds and try to go back2back in playoffs. This team may not have a lot of flashy names on their roster but they have shown the key to winning is having players who buy in to the same system and enjoy playing together. After 200 seasons of managing, DiLo l 19 l has assembled a squad that can consistently challenge for a title. It also seems as if Matic l 21 is going for a record of his own; most red cards in one season! Key Player: l IVIESSI 10 l – Can this man stop scoring? Messi is having another MVP calibre season and has an astonishing 14 goals, 5 assists and 8 MOTM awards in just 13 games! Messi will have to keep carrying this team offensively if AO wants to win consecutive ACL titles. 4) Eclipse CF Wow! I want some of what this defense is eating! Eclipse has quietly gone about their work and is sitting in a decent playoff position. Statistically, they have the best defense in the league with just 8 goals allowed in 22 games. However, the offense seems to be greatly struggling by averaging just above 1 goal per game. EcF Marvinho will need to take over the CAM position and start facilitating his offense once again because 1 goal per game may not cut it when it comes playoff time. Key Player: That Bottleface – Bottle will have to hold it down between the sticks while this Eclipse offense finds their form once again. If this team starts letting up goals they may find themselves fighting for a playoff spot instead of fighting for a top seed. Bottle and his defense have a lot on their hands and he must keep showing why he is one of the top GK’s in this league 5) Never Unlucky It is surprising when you don’t see this team fighting for the number 1 seed. NU really seems to be missing Unlucky Masters. They have not been playing bad but have not been playing great either. With some new additions to the team, they seem to be lacking the chemistry they had when they won the ACL title. NU has the players to go all the way but they need to build chemistry fast or they find themselves on the outside looking in. Key Players: Unlucky Diggs/Unlucky Dblock – Diggs and Dblock each have 9 goals so far this season and they will have to keep scoring because apart from them, NU has only scored a total of 7 goals so they are not really getting much help offensively from the rest of the team. If Diggs and Dblock slow down, NU’s titles hopes may fade away. 6) Elusive Similar to the first time, Elusive was formed three days before the season started and once again they manage to find themselves in the top half of the table. Fiddleton has made his ACL return and once again finds himself scoring at will from the CB position. Fiddle is the one of the top goal scorers for Elusive with 5 goals and he must keep scoring since the offense cannot really seem to find their groove. Not having a consistent offense line up every match day is also hurting this team and that may be a worry come playoff time. Key Player: Fiddleton – It seems like Elusive may be Fiddleton’s lucky charm. He cannot seem to stop scoring when he plays on this team. Offensively speaking, there are not many other CB’s you could want on your team when you are in a set piece situation. Elusive may be better off playing Fiddleton at striker since he is scoring more than their strikers. 7) FC BananaZ Known for their eye catching play style, BananaZ has definitely been one of the most improved teams. I’m sure this team could care less about people complaining about their 6’7 players since they are making a strong case for being a playoff team. They need to keep picking up maximum points before they start facing the tougher teams towards the end of the season. Key Player: BaTiSTuTa l 9 l – Batistuta is holding his own even though he is playing lone striker in a 4141 formation. Hopefully his team can keep feeding him the rock because he is their main source of offense and he can potentially win himself a golden boot whilst helping his team secure a playoff spot. 8) Dumptruck CF It seemed like Dumptruck was going to be stuck at the bottom of the table for the rest of the season but it looks like they have started to figure things out after signing Dearing l 15 l during the mid-season transfer window. When looking at this roster you would think this team would be in the top 3 but they have under performed massively. The offense has not been too great and the defense is not helping out too much either. This team definitely has the players to keep pushing on and finish off strong and I expect them to do so. Key Player: Ortegon x10 – Ortegon has been dishing the rock as he usually does and has already got 9 assists this season. If this team is to make a push Orte will have to keep facilitating the offense and he may even find himself with the prestigious assist leader award in the process. 9) Kinetic Firstly, I need to applaud Kinetic for being one of the few teams that have actually played all their scheduled games up until now. Kinetic has had a average season with luck not being on their side in some games. Another season has gone by and Farrell is still one of the premier scorers in the league with 10 goals in 24 games. Kinetic’s remaining games are not too hard so they can definitely push for a playoff spot if they stay consistent. Key Player: Cruz l 7 l – Not the first choice many would expect at GK, but Kinetic have put their trust in this young man and he has repaid them with a respectable 7 clean sheets in 13 games. If Cruz can hold it down between the sticks, Kinetic may find themselves in playoffs and Cruz may even become a high profile GK in the league 10) Arrechos SC During the pre season it looked like Arrechos were finally making their case to be a playoff team. However, as the season has gone on they have looked like they usually do, average. They still have a chance to make playoffs but as usual I expect them to be on the outside looking in. I really want this team to do well but they are lacking a difference maker in the offense which can help them win close games. Key Player: Asc l Camba – Camba is a streaky GK. He can be either really hot or really cold. This season he has really stepped up to the plate and helped Arrechos get points in games they shouldn’t have even been in. The debate for top GK’s in this league go on and on but Camba is definitely up there and Arrechos will need all his help if they want to make playoffs. 11) Bang Nation Last seasons ACL finalists Bang Nation are having a fairly average season thus far. It is definitely not something you would expect from a team that went to the finals last season and returned with basically the same squad. The VPN’s hottest player Bauer l 43 l has not been so hot this season but he is still hanging in there with 8 clean sheets in 23 games. It will be quite embarrassing if this team does not make playoffs since they were barking at the top of their lungs before the season started. If Bang Nation can get on a hot streak they can maybe slip in to 8th place but that is a long shot. Key Player: l Isco l – Isco has found new life as a CAM. Even though the team has underperformed, Isco has put up respectable numbers for his first season as a CAM. He is the team's assist leader and also second in goals scored for BN. The game plan for Bang Nation must be to give the ball to Isco and let him do his work. 12) Dark Horse FC Well they aren’t exactly the Dark Horses, are they? This team has pulled off some upsets but other than that they have not done much. They score a lot but they also concede a lot. If this team had a defense they could easily make a push for playoffs. Key Player: CF Gamebreaker – After getting tired of sitting on the bench for AO, Gamebreaker decided it was time to move on to a team that he could make a difference on and what a difference he has made. He has 8 goals and 3 assists in 16 games as a winger! He is definitely making his case for TOTS selection.