Growing up, I always remembered the Pro Evolution Soccer series (or Winning Eleven, as it was called in North America back then) as the gameplay-focused alternative to FIFA. Sure, FIFA had all the real teams and lineups you could ask for, but if you really wanted a game that felt like real soccer, Pro Evo was the better choice. That's why it was interesting to rejoin the Pro Evolution series after so many years and see how the dynamics between the two games have changed, and how they really haven't.
FIFA's recent total dominance of the market every year happened largely because of its serious gameplay upgrades. Like Pro Evo used to be, FIFA became more fluid and responsive to control input. So it's no longer such a huge difference to switch between series. They feel almost the same now. Pro Evo still gives you a bit more control, as players will back-heel pass to their teammates fluidly rather than take three seconds to turn around and pass as FIFA often does (because honestly, all of these professional players can back-heel pass, they should not need a high "flair rating" or whatever for such a simple maneuver). Headed shots and goals also feel much more realistic in Pro Evo, as when they connect the ball will splash into the back net with force rather than constantly going just over the bar as they seem to in FIFA. Free kicks are possible for a non-expert to use effectively, unlike in FIFA.
But those realism advantages are a small list compared to previous iterations, and the general feel of fluidity is not as large an advantage as it used to be. It's as if Pro Evolution can no longer keep up its gameplay advantage gap, and FIFA is starting to really catch up. Which is unfortunate for Konami's series, because that really was the only true advantage it had going for it.
Pro Evolution Soccer has never had a reasonable number of licensed leagues and teams. This oversight seemed a little more reasonable back in 2000 than it does now. I simply expect to be able to play as any Bundesliga team or any major national team and have all the players represented realistically. Even the U.S. national team is given ridiculous fake names in Pro Evo, and we should be past having to deal with that in 2010. The only advantage having so few licensed leagues gives is that the real players who are in-game all look exactly like their real-life counterparts. I loved seeing every minor player on my favorite team A.S. Roma reproduced so faithfully in Pro Evo.