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Thread: The Barcelona Style: My Interpretation

  1. #1
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    Default The Barcelona Style: My Interpretation

    I've been promising to write this for a while now, but never had the time to sit down and do it. Wet weather has curtailed my evening plans, so I'll take the chance to do it now.

    I got involved in a debate/rant in the GD forum about the 'unrealism' of tactics and the ME. One of the arguments from the side attacking the ME was that if it were realistic, then it would be possible to recreate the Barcelona style of tactic in FM. It was posited that because nobody had successfully done so, then the ME was patently flawed. I disagreed with the premise, arguing that such a tactic should be extremely difficult to get right, as so few teams had ever approached that level in the real world. The user manager would need to have in depth knowledge of tactical theory, know how to translate that into the game, and also have a team full of the right players to get it working. However, I decided to experiment in designing such a tactic. This is the outcome.


    Limitations


    Before continuing, there is one serious limitation in the ME that prevents the tactic being exactly like the Barcelona tactic, in that defensive midfielders do not have the flexibility to drop between the DCs when the team is in possession. There is also one override required in the TC, namely the choice of Primary Playmaker. However, everything else in the tactic is done through the TC and shouts, with no manual tweaking.


    Flawed Interpretations

    The biggest problem I had with those trying to design a Barcelona-esque tactic was their insistence that Barcelona played an attacking style of football. Every time I watched them, they played possession football deep on the park, either moving the ball slowly upfield and probing space or attacking at pace if gaps opened up. Both types of play produced goals, the former through the technical brilliance of their midfield, the latter through the pace and directness of their inverted wingers and attacking full backs.


    Barcelona: My Interpretation

    My interpretation of the Barcelona tactic is that it has a triple-pivot playmaker system, with Xavi, Iniesta and Messi all dictating play from central positions. Xavi is generally the deepest and Messi the highest, although they often are not that far apart. This creative central trio is supported by three defensive players in the DC and DM positions, who provide a stable base of excellent defensive positioning and simple possession passes. Out wide, the inverted wingers angle into the space Messi creates by dropping deep and the full backs surge into the wide spaces behind them.

    The tactic operates on the basic principle of controlling space, being high and tight in defence, and low and wide in attack. This is possible because the team are a hard working unit in both defence and attack and technically excellent in keeping the ball. As they keep the ball so well, they can afford to press aggressively in defence without getting tired, even in hot conditions.


    Formation, Strategy and Philosophy


    4-1-2-2-1 (4-3-3): Flat back four, one DM, two MCs, AML, AMR and FCC.

    Counter: My own take on the Barcelona style is that is closest to the Counter Strategy in Football Manager than any other. When Barcelona get the ball, the first thing that happens is the defence drop deeper, opening up passing space between the defence and the playmaking midfield. The Counter Strategy enables this deep move. As mentioned above, they attack in two ways, the slow probe or the fast counter. Again, the Counter strategy allows this.

    Balanced: Because their Barcelona get much of their width from the rampaging full backs while keeping the ball deep, the philosophical system that has the biggest differential between the full backs and the defence is the go to. This encourages both the possession play centrally, reducing the risky pass mentality, while allowing FBs on Attack duties to bomb forward at will. Balanced has the biggest mentality gap in these areas, hence it is my choice.


    Adjustments


    Shorter Passing:
    Barca play a short passing game. Anything that encourages this is required.

    Greater Creative Freedom:
    You need to give players their head to create chances out of tight spaces, so encouraging creativity is a must.

    Zonal Marking: Actually, not really needed as the shouts will determine this. However, I believe they mark zonally in reality, so....

    Heavier Pressing: Barca press when they defend. Again, not really needed as you will use the shouts to do this. However, set it at maximum anyway.

    Normal Tackling: Again, I'll use the shouts to set this.

    More Roaming: Barca players move from their standard positions all the time. Greater roaming encourages this.


    Player Roles/Duties

    Sweeper Keeper/Support:
    Encourages the keeper to play short passes and make quick throws.

    DCs/Cover/Stopper split: Barca have a high d-line when defending and a low one when in possession. The split DCs makes sense as it supports both. NB: I actually use a Ball Playing Defender in my tactic because I have players who can do the job. However, it is not a requirement.

    Wing Backs/Attack: A key position on both flanks as it gives the team width when going forward. I will happily spend my entire transfer budget on a world class wing back they are so important to the system.

    Defensive Midfielder/Defend: Although the deepest lying midfielder in the Barcelona tactic is the least technically accomplished, he is by no means a donkey and is a good ball player in his own right. The Anchor Man role is thus too limiting. The Defensive Midfielder role gives him a little more scope to feed players ahead of him.

    MCR/Deep-Lying Playmaker/Support: Xavi's role and vital to ball maintenance. Will rarely get into goalscoring positions, but the deepness of his positioning due to the strategy ensures the payer is invariably unmarked and can dictate possession all match. Override the tactical defaults by ensuring he is the primary playmaker.

    MCL/Advanced Playmaker/Attack: Iniesta's role and the key link between attack and midfield. As with Iniesta, might not score many goals, but provides multiple assists.

    AML/R/Inside Forwards/Attack: This role encourages both wide men to move into open central space off the flanks when the FC drops deeper. It also opens space for the FBs to advance into on the flanks.

    Trequartista: Messi's role, the playmaking centre forward who drops deep into midfield and runs at the defence.


    Shouts


    Retain Possession: Encourages keep ball.

    Pass into Space: The technical passing shout that encourages all the players to play through balls to teammates breaking from deep.

    Work Ball into Box: Encourage the edge of box passing moves and close range shots that typify Barcelona goals

    Push Higher Up: Increases the d-line height when defending

    Hassle Opponent: Ensures heavy pressing from all players

    Stay on Feet: Ensures players stay on their feet in the tackle so they are able to immediately play the ball after winning it


    Performance

    I've only played one full season with this tactic, but results have been impressive. Won 35 out of 38, scoring 89 and conceding 8 in the league. Also won the League Cup and Champions League. Lost 3 matches all season, all of them 1-0.

    NB: I'm not uploading the tactic. It can be created in minutes using the TC.
    Last edited by wwfan; 30-09-2011 at 07:15.

  2. #2
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    Firstly, I'm a big Barca fan. They are the team which fills me with passion, they are the reason why I love football so much. I follow their matches very closely, so I will post some notes about their football.

    One of the arguments from the side attacking the ME was that if it were realistic, then it would be possible to recreate the Barcelona style of tactic in FM. It was posited that because nobody had successfully done so, then the ME was patently flawed. I disagreed with the premise, arguing that such a tactic should be extremely difficult to get right, as so few teams had ever approached that level in the real world.
    Absolutely. Users have to realize, that Barca's style of football is something, which is possible to play only with Barca/old Ajax sides, because the players are teached to play this kind of football from the beginning. In FM this is reflected quite a well. There are no equivalents to Messi, Xavi, Iniesta etc....maybe some users have superhuman regens, but it's important to bear in mind, that PPM's are very, very important aspect of the game and Barca's players generally have a lot of them which significantly influences their way of playing.


    Before continuing, there is one serious limitation in the ME that prevents the tactic being exactly like the Barcelona tactic, in that defensive midfielders do not have the flexibility to drop between the DCs when the team is in possession. There is also one override required in the TC, namely the choice of Primary Playmaker. However, everything else in the tactic is done through the TC and shouts, with no manual tweaking.
    Barca's DM (Busquets) drops between the centre backs when in possesion, but only sometimes (generally when the opponent closes down aggresively and high up the pitch, so the DM offers a passingoption closer to the GK (Valdes) and the two centre backs go wide). But Busquets generally doesn't drop when it's not needed. Same without posession. Busquets drops only when the opponent plays with two pure strikers (eg. against Atlético last year vs. Agüero-Forlán), which is a very rare thing against Barca. Otherwise there is no need for him to drop.

    My interpretation of the Barcelona tactic is that it has a triple-pivot playmaker system, with Xavi, Iniesta and Messi all dictating play from central positions. Xavi is generally the deepest and Messi the highest, although they often are not that far apart. This creative central trio is supported by three defensive players in the DC and DM positions, who provide a stable base of excellent defensive positioning and simple possession passes. Out wide, the inverted wingers angle into the space Messi creates by dropping deep and the full backs surge into the wide spaces behind them.
    Xavi's role is a very tricky. In FM terms he should be set as a deep lying playmaker, but he generally does a lot of forward runs as well. I believe he has PPM "goes deep to the ball", combined with FWR set to often should allow him to play as he does IRL.

    Few other notes.

    - Barca generally don't play with two ultra attacking full backs. Only one of them (Alves) bombs forward at every opportunity. The left fullback is generally much more cautious with his runs.
    - Barca generally press very high up the pitch, but they press much higher at the Nou Camp. Eg. in some away games you can see Messi not closing down at all.
    - This season we will see a lot of 3-4-3 (especially at the Nou Camp), because it suits Fabregas perfectly. He can act as a pure old school n10 just behind Messi and it's a pleasure to see them playing together. Iniesta and Xavi behind them, with Busquets in DM and we have a pure diamond midfield there. Cruyff's legacy .

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    Agree about the pressing not being an absolute, which is why it is a shout. It might also be possible to do well with a less active DL, as the most advanced MC plays on that side. Would be worth experimenting with.

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    I once started a Barcelona team and made a formation like this:
    ------Messi------
    Villa--------Pedro
    --Iniesta-Xavi---
    -----Busq---Dani A
    Abidal- Pique-Puy

    GK - Sweeper keeper - attacking
    DL - Full back - Defend
    DC - Defender - Defend
    DCR - Defender - Defend
    WBR - Wingback - Attack
    DMC - Defensive/control? - Support
    MCL - Advanced playmake - Attack
    MCR - Deep lying playmaker - Support
    AMR - Winger - Support
    AML - Winger - Support
    SC - Trequartista - Attack

    the front 4 players the task to move into channels and did quite well, get 31 points out of 11 matches, where Atletico madrid made a lucky draw. I never played further because it felt easy and I wouldnt be able to live with myself helping barcelona
    Last edited by MijnEigenFan; 28-09-2011 at 18:37.

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    I wonder what would happen if you pushed the back 4 into the next strata...

    WBL (Attack) -- DMC (Defend) -- DLP (Support) -- DMC (Defend) -- WBR (Attack)

    With Guardiola's move to fill his team with midfielders this might not be as crazy as it seems...

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    furiousuk, as idea, it seems crazy to me. It wood be awesome if someone was able to pull it off, though I don't think the ME would reat well to it.

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    I did just try no CBs with Barca and won 10-0 against Poji Ejido. The line up was:

    GK sweeper keeper support
    WBR attack
    WBL support
    DMC DLP defend
    DMC DLP defend

    MCr AP support
    MC DLP support
    MC AP support

    STr AF
    STc Trequartista
    STl AF

    Not sure how stable it would be defensively, cos at times my team were all over the place, and the DMs do at times push too far forward causing the WBs to drop behind them which is a little silly but offensively it was good.

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    I've made a formation with no strikers, which feels much more natural for Barca than with an arbitrary striker. It's the same as your traditional 4-5-1 which wwfan wrote about but instead of a striker, Messi is playing in AMC position, with max creative freedom and roaming on, naturally. Very Fluid, Expressive Creative Freedom, more roaming and have 15 points advantage over Real in February, one draw and no defeats, Messi is averaging 8 and more than a goal per game.

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    Well playing Real Madrid with no CBs worked until 30 mins in where my DMs just pushed 30 yards away from the half way line so their front 4 broke easily twice without challenge to make it 2-2 at half time. for the second half, I've moved the DMs back to CB as ball playing defenders.

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    Quote Originally Posted by furiousuk View Post
    I wonder what would happen if you pushed the back 4 into the next strata...

    WBL (Attack) -- DMC (Defend) -- DLP (Support) -- DMC (Defend) -- WBR (Attack)

    With Guardiola's move to fill his team with midfielders this might not be as crazy as it seems...
    I wouldn't go quite so extreme, but DL (WB/Support) -- DMC (Support) -- DLP (Cover) -- (DMC (Defend) -- DLR (WB/Attack) might work well. FBs with the WB role are so dynamic thee is no need to push them up a strata.


    I've made a formation with no strikers, which feels much more natural for Barca than with an arbitrary striker. It's the same as your traditional 4-5-1 which wwfan wrote about but instead of a striker, Messi is playing in AMC position, with max creative freedom and roaming on, naturally. Very Fluid, Expressive Creative Freedom, more roaming and have 15 points advantage over Real in February, one draw and no defeats, Messi is averaging 8 and more than a goal per game.
    If you add this to the mix, you might line up like so:

    GK: Valdes (SK/Support/Distribute to DR)
    DR: Alves (WB/Attack)
    DC: Maschereno (BPD/Cover)
    DL: Abidal (WB/Support)
    DMCR: Busquets (DM/Defend)
    DMCL: Xavi (DLP/Support/Primary PM)
    MCR: Iniesta (AP/Support)
    MCL: Fabregas (AP/Attack)
    AMR: Sanchez (IF/Attack)
    AMC: Messi (TQ)
    AML: Villa (IF/Attack)

    That would be a very interesting formation. Basically, a 3-7-0.
    Last edited by wwfan; 28-09-2011 at 22:37.

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    - I agree that Barcelona aren't really attacking. It's a good point to make. They really don't have the kind of urgency and risk-taking that an attacking mentality enforces.

    - Villa and Pedro don't have identical roles and the distinction isn't down to their personal preference but tactical instructions.

    - You can not replicate the role Dani Alves plays. Not his movement and not the passes that the midfield plays to him. Also, the left-back should be way more defensive (or Alves should be more attacking). There really needs to be a clear distinction between the two.

    - Xavi is no deep-lying playmaker. It may be down to the rigidness of the ME and it might be impossible the replicate... but Xavi does make well timed runs and is a pretty good finisher too. See the historical El Clásico last year and the 8-0 trashing of Osasuna off the top of my head. Not runs a deep-lying playmaker would do.

    - The way that Barca defenders play under pressure... inexplicable. Éric Abidal has some nerves to play under pressure! I reckon he has 'plays way out of trouble' in FM but he still makes hurried clearances he would NEVER make in real life. The same applies to the defence in general. In FM, you can't have a defence as composed as Barca's.

    - The 4-3-3 is kinda passé! With the partnership that Messi and Fàbregas form, I reckon Pep will find it increasingly harder to steer away from the 3-4-3. Not too confident that would play out too well with the current ME!

    To be honest, nothing you've said here is in any way revolutionary. People have been doing this for ages but the way wnb-Barca tactics play out in the ME just isn't satisfactory. You can try and replicate some mystical philosophy and it might be succesful, but your tactic being succesful in terms of winning doesn't mean it's a succesful replication of IRL Barca. SI obviously haven't had Barcelona in mind when tweaking the ME.

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    Is this the actual way you play wwfan or the ideal? I take it you are a top team, I always strugggle to find a decent treqaurtista

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    What are people's possession stats and individual passing stats?

    It's all well and good winning so many games but if you aren't controlling the ball almost every single occasion bar the odd one or two games then it doesn't feel right. Same with the players, I can't win a game 4-0 with Barcelona only to find Xavi has made 31 passes. Alves has made 72. Iniesta 27 etc....just doesn't feel right.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The-Perfect-Fm'er! View Post
    What are people's possession stats and individual passing stats?

    It's all well and good winning so many games but if you aren't controlling the ball almost every single occasion bar the odd one or two games then it doesn't feel right. Same with the players, I can't win a game 4-0 with Barcelona only to find Xavi has made 31 passes. Alves has made 72. Iniesta 27 etc....just doesn't feel right.
    Agreed. The results are very nice but you don't dominate possession like barca do.

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    Just wanted to say how fantastic this thread is as it helps show you how to build a solid realistic system.

    I was wondering WWFAN if you will do any more teams such as Stoke, Manchester United, Arsenal, Real Madrid, maybe some more old school teams such as the 2002 Brazil World Cup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by däkkä View Post
    To be honest, nothing you've said here is in any way revolutionary. People have been doing this for ages but the way wnb-Barca tactics play out in the ME just isn't satisfactory. You can try and replicate some mystical philosophy and it might be succesful, but your tactic being successful in terms of winning doesn't mean it's a successful replication of IRL Barca. SI obviously haven't had Barcelona in mind when tweaking the ME.
    As I said, it is an interpretation of the tactic, not a perfect simulation. The player in the Xavi role might not get forward enough, and the DR might not play exactly like Alves. However, a lot of that type of movement will be down to the player himself, not the tactical instructions. The ME lacks the fluidity of real life decision making.

    For what it is worth, by AML and AMR perform very differently even in the same roles. My AML is very much a team player and plays more like Pedro. However, the AMR is a goal sniffer and plays more like David Villa. Partly that is down to their PPMs, and partly down to their workrate/vision/teamwork. The subtlety that these type of things add to overall play shouldn't be ignored.


    Is this the actual way you play wwfan or the ideal? I take it you are a top team, I always struggle to find a decent treqaurtista
    Yes, although I'm Arsenal in 2030, not contemporary Barca. My TQs are a little forced into the role and don't perfectly fit. However, I have a 19 year old German who's going to be an awesome TQ in a few years.


    What are people's possession stats and individual passing stats?

    It's all well and good winning so many games but if you aren't controlling the ball almost every single occasion bar the odd one or two games then it doesn't feel right. Same with the players, I can't win a game 4-0 with Barcelona only to find Xavi has made 31 passes. Alves has made 72. Iniesta 27 etc....just doesn't feel right.
    Passing stats in the ME are always 20-30% low across all teams, so you'll never match Barca. This is mainly to do with the ball being out of play too long (especially when there is an inujury), which reduces the amount of time played below real life by a good 5-10 minutes. It is also down to the keeper and defenders having too great a tendency to boot the ball long or out of play when under minimal pressure. In real life many defensive headers will result int he opposing team regaining possession and putting together another passing move. In FM, they always go out for a corner or launch a run with ball counter attack.

    However, the tactic does dominate possession. The most possession I've had at the end of a half is 81% and at the end of a match 73% (not the same game weirdly). It's unusual for me to get less than 60% unless I am playing a top side. I'm certainly averaging over 60% against mid-lower table sides in my current season. I don't think my team is player for player as high quality as Barca's, so any higher than that is going to be a push. The player in the Xavi role certainly doesn't get enough ball though, which is mainly down to the ME not allowing him to drop deep enough to get easy ball from the defence.


    Just wanted to say how fantastic this thread is as it helps show you how to build a solid realistic system.

    I was wondering WWFAN if you will do any more teams such as Stoke, Manchester United, Arsenal, Real Madrid, maybe some more old school teams such as the 2002 Brazil World Cup.
    Thanks. I'll do a traditional British style system once FM12 comes out. You need the 'Cross Early' shout for it to work properly.

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    wwfan thanks for your interesting sharing!

    How Messi did for you as a TQ?

    Thanks for this thread.

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    Messi does well in any role and especially TQ, since it gives him max CF and Roaming license to do what he wants.

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    Quote Originally Posted by millwallrules View Post
    Just wanted to say how fantastic this thread is as it helps show you how to build a solid realistic system.

    I was wondering WWFAN if you will do any more teams such as Stoke, Manchester United, Arsenal, Real Madrid, maybe some more old school teams such as the 2002 Brazil World Cup.
    I think this is a good idea, not only for wwfan but if people would write about real life formations/tactics translated into FM.

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    Limitations

    Before continuing, there is one serious limitation in the ME that prevents the tactic being exactly like the Barcelona tactic, in that defensive midfielders do not have the flexibility to drop between the DCs when the team is in possession. There is also one override required in the TC, namely the choice of Primary Playmaker. However, everything else in the tactic is done through the TC and shouts, with no manual tweaking.
    Granada CF are currently doing this IRL and it's a shame it can't be emulated in the ME.

    They're currently playing a 4-3-3, with flat back four, DMC, 2x MC's, wingers and a striker. When the full-backs get forward, their DMC usually drops back to form a three man defence (effectively becoming a ball playing "stopper"), so the shape turns into a 3-4-3. Likewise, when the full-backs get forward, the wingers often switch to being inside forwards and sometimes swap sides to be on their stronger shooting foot when cutting inside.

    The nearest I've been able to get is have the DMC on the most defensive settings possible, but obviously he'll always be much further ahead of the two central defenders positionally. The other alternative has been to try using my DMC as the most central defender, as a ball playing "stopper", but then he's not advanced enough when he needs to be. Tricky one to try working around, for sure and something I've seen not only Granada do this season, but a few other teams in Spain too.

    I can't get as close as I'd like to the shape naturally changing, though I can come fairly close with the full-backs getting forward on more offensive settings. Unfortunately although I can set position swapping on my two wingers, they won't naturally switch to being inside-forwards without my instruction.

    I'm looking forward to tinkering with some things with FM12 though. Obviously as I'm watching Granada CF every match, I find myself analysing their tactics, their positional play and movement. Also interesting to watch the various ways other teams and players are playing in Liga BBVA too.

    I always enjoy the game much more when I can get nearer to something I've seen in action for real, when trying to emulate it in FM.
    Last edited by heathxxx; 30-09-2011 at 21:25.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heathxxx View Post
    Granada CF are currently doing this IRL and it's a shame it can't be emulated in the ME.

    They're currently playing a 4-3-3, with flat back four, DMC, 2x MC's, wingers and a striker. When the full-backs get forward, their DMC usually drops back to form a three man defence (effectively becoming a ball playing "stopper"), so the shape turns into a 3-4-3. Likewise, when the full-backs get forward, the wingers often switch to being inside forwards and sometimes swap sides to be on their stronger shooting foot when cutting inside.

    The nearest I've been able to get is have the DMC on the most defensive settings possible, but obviously he'll always be much further ahead of the two central defenders positionally. The other alternative has been to try using my DMC as the most central defender, as a ball playing "stopper", but then he's not advanced enough when he needs to be. Tricky one to try working around, for sure and something I've seen not only Granada do this season, but a few other teams in Spain too.

    I can't get as close as I'd like to the shape naturally changing, though I can come fairly close with the full-backs getting forward on more offensive settings. Unfortunately although I can set position swapping on my two wingers, they won't naturally switch to being inside-forwards without my instruction.

    I'm looking forward to tinkering with some things with FM12 though. Obviously as I'm watching Granada CF every match, I find myself analysing their tactics, their positional play and movement. Also interesting to watch the various ways other teams and players are playing in Liga BBVA too.

    I always enjoy the game much more when I can get nearer to something I've seen in action for real, when trying to emulate it in FM.
    Barcelona were doing a similar thing with Busquets at DMC about a year ago, maybe more if I remember correctly. I remember reading a Zonal Marking article about it anyway. And I know SFraser back then was constantly trying to get his Left Back to push forward and the 2 CB's and RB to make a 3 man defence when he attacked, could never get it to work properly and neither could I with Everton trying to get Leighton Baines to push forward and have Distin, Jagielka and Neville form a back 3. Like you, I thought it was really fun watching and attending games, analysing tactics and trying to replicate in FM.

    Being able to change shape depending on whether you're attacking or defending (within reason) is something I think is missing from FM, but it must be terribly complicated to implement on SI's side, or I'm sure they would have introduced something. Even if it were just Maximum Mentality puts him in the next band when attacking and Minimum Mentality puts him in the one before when defending.

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    I have never had any problems geting the DM to behave and move in the way I want, and yes he does drop into the defense on occasions, my problems with playing this style of football is the demands it put on the attacking players (in order to score while still keep a high amount of possession), and the pressing game (which is close to impossible to replicate in the ME), as a result of this I have had my team drop slightly deeper to still maintain a good defensive shape and focus slightly more on the transition play and counter attacks.....in short my team probably ended up playing a bit closer to Spalletti era Roma then I first intended

    wwfan: can you upload some pkm's of your team playing your tactic?


    Quote Originally Posted by millwallrules View Post
    Just wanted to say how fantastic this thread is as it helps show you how to build a solid realistic system.

    I was wondering WWFAN if you will do any more teams such as Stoke, Manchester United, Arsenal, Real Madrid, maybe some more old school teams such as the 2002 Brazil World Cup.
    I have wanted to replicate Stoke for a long time, but in all honesty, I dont have enough real life understanding of that playing style to make it work in the ME
    Last edited by Falahk; 30-09-2011 at 23:53.

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    I've discussed cover DMCs and shifting defences with Paul on a number of occasions. They are theoretically possible to implement in the ME, but a very complex task. I certainly expect longer term revisions of the ME/TC to embrace such tactical innovations. As for when that might happen ... ???

    As with everything in the virtual world, it takes time to bring it up to speed with real world thought. Until it has caught up, we can build tactics that are theoretically sound interpretations of real world tactics, but not ones that produce exactly the same type of movement real life teams do. Of course, buy the time the ME/TC enables these types of moves, new tactical innovations will have occurred and FM will have to catch up with them. It's a never ending task.

    I don't have FM installed on this machine. When I have the time, I'll try to upload a few pkms somewhere.

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    personaly I think the DMC already possible to implement in the current ME but you need a suitable player and you also need to consider how the players around him play, I think one of the things many dont realize is that the DMC need space to drop back into, and they may ether have the defenders play in a role that is to conservative, in terms of tackling, closing down, creative freedom etc, or simply play on to narrow width (so they already take up that space)

    on this current 11,3 ME the wide defenders also moves slightly more central then they used to when defending, then they did on early patches, so it might be a good plan to set the wide play of the lb/rb on hugging the touchline

    -------------

    if we are speaking about ME problems, im sure that its a much larger problem that the ME think you play with a flat back 5, when you have told your team to play a flat 3-5-2 formation with attacking wingers

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    My DM is not particularly good defensively and not quite good enough to be a creative force but he is an exceptional cover DM. Pace, acceleration, anticipation, positioning and decisions mean that he is able to cover very well for either marauding FB whilst he will also slot into DC if my aggressive tight man-marking DC decides to follow an opponent further up the pitch. He is set to tight man-mark as well but he doesn't follow an opponent into the DC area, he is actively covering the space that the DC has left. He has only started behaving like this in the last year or so which I have attributed to his rising decisions & anticipation, particularly decisions.

    The cover DM is just as important a role as a DM Destroyer or DM Playmaker.

    I've had no success either in trying to get him to drop into a 3-man defence when my team is attacking.

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    furiousuk and how aggressive is his closing down? In the middle?

    And one more thing, if his job is to cover, wouldn't be better to leave him with zonal and loose?
    Last edited by mikcheck; 01-10-2011 at 11:36.

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    I set 'Press More' in the team instructions and leave it at the TC defaults so his closing down is pretty high and at roughly the same level as those around him.

    I'd agree with zonal and loose in theory but it seems to work better with tight-man. I'm not entirely sure why but I think he looks to man-mark the free man in the opposing formation, if there is no-one man-marked in his DM area then he'll look for targets further away. I'm assuming how far he looks is down to his attributes, in addition to his very high decisions & anticipation he has low-ish aggression which probably contributes to his decision-making process. My way of thinking is that zonal will keep him closer to his formational position, this is good for keeping a whole team shape but (unless specifically marking an AMC) I want him to be the free man in defence who will go where he is most needed.

    In a similar fashion I'm not afraid to play a flat 4141 to see out a game (particularly as I usually play the 41221 which is formationally very similar) - I'll change from my man-marking strategy to a loose zonal system with DM and FC on tight man-marking. The idea is that the 2 banks of 4 hold their shape and is very difficult to pick apart whilst the DM looks to aggressively mark anybody foolhardy enough to operate between those lines.

    I haven't had much success in getting a pressing game to operate like Barca's even though my team has perfect attributes for it so I might change to the defensive settings wwfan suggests in the OP.

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    Thanks.

    When you say you going to change, you mean to zonal marking?

    I have another doubt, is it possible to attack with a deep defensive line and defend with a push up one? I mean if we set it higher, it will be like that both attacking and defending right?
    Last edited by mikcheck; 01-10-2011 at 19:21.

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    You can use a deep defensive line coupled with a more attacking strategy. I do this against very defensive teams in order to draw them out. Defending with a higher defensive line is useful, in my opinion, against a physically weak team (low speed, low condition), you'll need speedy defenders though.

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    Thanks. It would be cool if we could use both at the same time because i really have difficulty finding space with teams who park the bus. So attacking from deep and defending higher could really help

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikcheck View Post
    When you say you going to change, you mean to zonal marking?

    Yes. I normally play a man/zonal hybrid where my central 5 players are on tight man-marking and my 5 'floating' players are on zonal.

    I sometimes change to a mainly zonal formation with the DM still as a tight man-marker. Zdlr wrote a good thread on defensive systems a while ago, this idea is taken from somewhere in that discussion.

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    As far as the DM is concerned, maybe SI could introduced a new PPM that sees him drop back between the CBs. How do you feel about that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by aderow View Post
    As far as the DM is concerned, maybe SI could introduced a new PPM that sees him drop back between the CBs. How do you feel about that?
    I'd back this, sounds like a cracking idea. There are already other PPM's that work outside the tactical framework so hard-coding this behaviour into the PPM mechanism sounds like a reasonable decision for SI to make, at least until they work out how to fit it into the general tactical framework of the ME.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    I've been promising to write this for a while now, but never had the time to sit down and do it. Wet weather has curtailed my evening plans, so I'll take the chance to do it now.

    I got involved in a debate/rant in the GD forum about the 'unrealism' of tactics and the ME. One of the arguments from the side attacking the ME was that if it were realistic, then it would be possible to recreate the Barcelona style of tactic in FM. It was posited that because nobody had successfully done so, then the ME was patently flawed. I disagreed with the premise, arguing that such a tactic should be extremely difficult to get right, as so few teams had ever approached that level in the real world. The user manager would need to have in depth knowledge of tactical theory, know how to translate that into the game, and also have a team full of the right players to get it working. However, I decided to experiment in designing such a tactic. This is the outcome.


    Limitations


    Before continuing, there is one serious limitation in the ME that prevents the tactic being exactly like the Barcelona tactic, in that defensive midfielders do not have the flexibility to drop between the DCs when the team is in possession. There is also one override required in the TC, namely the choice of Primary Playmaker. However, everything else in the tactic is done through the TC and shouts, with no manual tweaking.


    Flawed Interpretations

    The biggest problem I had with those trying to design a Barcelona-esque tactic was their insistence that Barcelona played an attacking style of football. Every time I watched them, they played possession football deep on the park, either moving the ball slowly upfield and probing space or attacking at pace if gaps opened up. Both types of play produced goals, the former through the technical brilliance of their midfield, the latter through the pace and directness of their inverted wingers and attacking full backs.


    Barcelona: My Interpretation

    My interpretation of the Barcelona tactic is that it has a triple-pivot playmaker system, with Xavi, Iniesta and Messi all dictating play from central positions. Xavi is generally the deepest and Messi the highest, although they often are not that far apart. This creative central trio is supported by three defensive players in the DC and DM positions, who provide a stable base of excellent defensive positioning and simple possession passes. Out wide, the inverted wingers angle into the space Messi creates by dropping deep and the full backs surge into the wide spaces behind them.

    The tactic operates on the basic principle of controlling space, being high and tight in defence, and low and wide in attack. This is possible because the team are a hard working unit in both defence and attack and technically excellent in keeping the ball. As they keep the ball so well, they can afford to press aggressively in defence without getting tired, even in hot conditions.


    Formation, Strategy and Philosophy


    4-1-2-2-1 (4-3-3): Flat back four, one DM, two MCs, AML, AMR and FCC.

    Counter: My own take on the Barcelona style is that is closest to the Counter Strategy in Football Manager than any other. When Barcelona get the ball, the first thing that happens is the defence drop deeper, opening up passing space between the defence and the playmaking midfield. The Counter Strategy enables this deep move. As mentioned above, they attack in two ways, the slow probe or the fast counter. Again, the Counter strategy allows this.

    Balanced: Because their Barcelona get much of their width from the rampaging full backs while keeping the ball deep, the philosophical system that has the biggest differential between the full backs and the defence is the go to. This encourages both the possession play centrally, reducing the risky pass mentality, while allowing FBs on Attack duties to bomb forward at will. Balanced has the biggest mentality gap in these areas, hence it is my choice.


    Adjustments


    Shorter Passing:
    Barca play a short passing game. Anything that encourages this is required.

    Greater Creative Freedom:
    You need to give players their head to create chances out of tight spaces, so encouraging creativity is a must.

    Zonal Marking: Actually, not really needed as the shouts will determine this. However, I believe they mark zonally in reality, so....

    Heavier Pressing: Barca press when they defend. Again, not really needed as you will use the shouts to do this. However, set it at maximum anyway.

    Normal Tackling: Again, I'll use the shouts to set this.

    More Roaming: Barca players move from their standard positions all the time. Greater roaming encourages this.


    Player Roles/Duties

    Sweeper Keeper/Support:
    Encourages the keeper to play short passes and make quick throws.

    DCs/Cover/Stopper split: Barca have a high d-line when defending and a low one when in possession. The split DCs makes sense as it supports both. NB: I actually use a Ball Playing Defender in my tactic because I have players who can do the job. However, it is not a requirement.

    Wing Backs/Attack: A key position on both flanks as it gives the team width when going forward. I will happily spend my entire transfer budget on a world class wing back they are so important to the system.

    Defensive Midfielder/Defend: Although the deepest lying midfielder in the Barcelona tactic is the least technically accomplished, he is by no means a donkey and is a good ball player in his own right. The Anchor Man role is thus too limiting. The Defensive Midfielder role gives him a little more scope to feed players ahead of him.

    MCR/Deep-Lying Playmaker/Support: Xavi's role and vital to ball maintenance. Will rarely get into goalscoring positions, but the deepness of his positioning due to the strategy ensures the payer is invariably unmarked and can dictate possession all match. Override the tactical defaults by ensuring he is the primary playmaker.

    MCL/Advanced Playmaker/Attack: Iniesta's role and the key link between attack and midfield. As with Iniesta, might not score many goals, but provides multiple assists.

    AML/R/Inside Forwards/Attack: This role encourages both wide men to move into open central space off the flanks when the FC drops deeper. It also opens space for the FBs to advance into on the flanks.

    Trequartista: Messi's role, the playmaking centre forward who drops deep into midfield and runs at the defence.


    Shouts


    Retain Possession: Encourages keep ball.

    Pass into Space: The technical passing shout that encourages all the players to play through balls to teammates breaking from deep.

    Work Ball into Box: Encourage the edge of box passing moves and close range shots that typify Barcelona goals

    Push Higher Up: Increases the d-line height when defending

    Hassle Opponent: Ensures heavy pressing from all players

    Stay on Feet: Ensures players stay on their feet in the tackle so they are able to immediately play the ball after winning it


    Performance

    I've only played one full season with this tactic, but results have been impressive. Won 35 out of 38, scoring 89 and conceding 8 in the league. Also won the League Cup and Champions League. Lost 3 matches all season, all of them 1-0.

    NB: I'm not uploading the tactic. It can be created in minutes using the TC.
    This is a very good interpretation of Barca's tactics. But it is worth pointing out that Pep has abandoned dropping the DM (Busquets) between the 2 DCs for some time. He actually now prefers to use 3-4-3 as a variation instead.

    A few questions......

    What override of the TC you talk about regarding the Primary Playmaker? Is one selected or is one always set up to be the Deep-lying playmaker (MRC) as the "Xavi" role?

    Which DC is the "Stopper" and which is the "Cover" - DCL or DCR? I would assume that DCR is the "Cover" as MRC has lower Mentality as DLP, right?

    Shouldn't the DL be set as Fullback on Attack Duty?

    Which position makes the highest number of passes during a match? How many passes does the MRC make? What is the pass completion % for the whole team and for each player in each respective position/role? I have seen Barca's tactics for FM with tweaked TC settings or done in Classic mode that achieve around 100 passes per game for the MRC role (Xavi) with 90+% completion rate. Can this be achieved with default TC instructions? I personally haven't been able to achieve this.

    IMO, individual instructions like RFD, RWB, LS, TTB and Cross ball should be overwritten manually when recreating RL Barca tactic. For example, even Xavi, Iniesta and Messi don't try through balls often and Villa/Pedro don't run with the ball "often".

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    Being able to change shape depending on whether you're attacking or defending (within reason) is something I think is missing from FM, but it must be terribly complicated to implement on SI's side, or I'm sure they would have introduced something.
    In the older CM-series (before the "split") you could do this. You could choose for each player where to be when the ball was in a given area of the pitch, for both on and off the ball situations. I spend hours making a 442 (assymetrival) diamond this way with great succes.

    So I guess it's doable, but they also removed it for a reason. My guess is, the match engine couldn't cope with the levels of freedom it gave you as a mangager, thus making the AI relatively weak.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Odom View Post
    You could choose for each player where to be when the ball was in a given area of the pitch, for both on and off the ball situations.
    I would love to see it simplified down into Attacking Formation/Style and Defensive Formation/Style. Yes, you would get the managers who defend as two banks of five and attack as two banks of five. But the key to choosing the two formations would be the transition from one to the other. As transition from attack to defense and vice-versa is one of the most important parts of modern football in my eyes. The way Mourinho's Chelsea would defend as a 4-1-4-1 but attack as a 4-1-2-3, Guardiola's Barca who defend as a 4-3-3 but attack as a 3-4-3 etc.

    I know this is possible in FM, as it loves to tell me that my 4-2-3-1 (Tactic) is a 4-1-4-1 (Managers Profile), but not to the extend of a 4-3-3 turning into a 3-4-3 with the Defensive Midfielder dropping back as talked about a few posts above.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yonko View Post
    What override of the TC you talk about regarding the Primary Playmaker? Is one selected or is one always set up to be the Deep-lying playmaker (MRC) as the "Xavi" role?
    The TC assigns primary playmakers in this order (TQ, DLP, AP). If you have a TQ, then you need to override this for the DLP.

    Which DC is the "Stopper" and which is the "Cover" - DCL or DCR? I would assume that DCR is the "Cover" as MRC has lower Mentality as DLP, right?
    My cover will always be the DC in parallel to the DLP, as his tendency to drop a little deeper gives the DLP more space to work in.

    Shouldn't the DL be set as Fullback on Attack Duty?
    Full Back Attack or Wing Back Support would both work in terms of making him slightly less aggressive.

    Which position makes the highest number of passes during a match? How many passes does the MRC make? What is the pass completion % for the whole team and for each player in each respective position/role? I have seen Barca's tactics for FM with tweaked TC settings or done in Classic mode that achieve around 100 passes per game for the MRC role (Xavi) with 90+% completion rate. Can this be achieved with default TC instructions? I personally haven't been able to achieve this.
    Pass completion is usually circa 86-90%. The DLP will usually have the highest completion ratio, but will not make 100 plus passes.

    IMO, individual instructions like RFD, RWB, LS, TTB and Cross ball should be overwritten manually when recreating RL Barca tactic. For example, even Xavi, Iniesta and Messi don't try through balls often and Villa/Pedro don't run with the ball "often".
    I was trying to interpret using the TC as much as possible. Doesn't mean that other, manually tweaked options can't get closer to the system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    The TC assigns primary playmakers in this order (TQ, DLP, AP). If you have a TQ, then you need to override this for the DLP.
    Ah, I'd never noticed that before.


    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    My cover will always be the DC in parallel to the DLP, as his tendency to drop a little deeper gives the DLP more space to work in.
    So my assumption was correct then - if MRC is the DLP, then the DRC is the Cover. That is how I arrange it too.

    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    Full Back Attack or Wing Back Support would both work in terms of making him slightly less aggressive.
    Both have RFD on mixed/sometimes, but FB on Attack would have higher mentality than WB on Support according to the Balanced Philosophy.

    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    Pass completion is usually circa 86-90%. The DLP will usually have the highest completion ratio, but will not make 100 plus passes.
    I'm very interested to read you post more info on that. Can you provide some screenshots with the pass completion and overall number of passes made of your players individually?

    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    I was trying to interpret using the TC as much as possible. Doesn't mean that other, manually tweaked options can't get closer to the system.
    Have you experimented with more manually tweaked options to get closer to the system? If you have, what are those tweaks? If you haven't, do you have ideas of any?

    And as a more general question.....Have you tried your interpretation of Barca's tactic with the Barcelona team in FM from the start or you have designed/created it using a current save game with another team (Arsenal if I recall from one of your previous posts)?

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    can match engine in 2012 handle 100+ passes per game with over 90% pass completion? and with 75+% of possesion




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    Perhaps a possible solution to the issue of getting DMs to drop into the last line of defense would be, in a future version of the TC, to allow players to have different roles depending on whether the team is, or is not, in possession.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krunccrni View Post
    can match engine in 2012 handle 100+ passes per game with over 90% pass completion? and with 75+% of possesion



    Have downloaded FM12 Demo, but yet to play as I'm enjoying my current save of Barcelona and the way I'm getting them too play; but this looks mighty impressive! In my in best efforts in FM11 I have only managed to get Xavi and a fellow deep-lying playmaker, Ganso or Fabregas, to make around 60 or so passes at 90% completion. My full backs will always dominate the passing statistics.

    How have you set up Xavi and your team in 12 to highlight the difference in match engines?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tommonufc View Post
    Have downloaded FM12 Demo, but yet to play as I'm enjoying my current save of Barcelona and the way I'm getting them too play; but this looks mighty impressive! In my in best efforts in FM11 I have only managed to get Xavi and a fellow deep-lying playmaker, Ganso or Fabregas, to make around 60 or so passes at 90% completion. My full backs will always dominate the passing statistics.

    How have you set up Xavi and your team in 12 to highlight the difference in match engines?
    I want to make tactic that will produce real barca statistic and to make it constant in every game; 65%+ of possession, 85% of pass completion, 400+ completed passes, and xavi to get 100+ passes.

    Problem in fm 2011 was that most of passes is made by full backs, especially left full back. Its not about xavi set up, but how to make your team and other players (full backs, and cb) to pass the ball to him. I can send you link with my tactic so you can try it and see how it works for you and maybe give suggestion to improve tactic
    Last edited by krunccrni; 07-10-2011 at 17:05.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krunccrni View Post
    I want to make tactic that will produce real barca statistic and to make it constant in every game; 65%+ of possession, 85% of pass completion, 400+ completed passes, and xavi to get 100+ passes.

    Problem in fm 2011 was that most of passes is made by full backs, especially left full back. Its not about xavi set up, but how to make your team and other players (full backs, and cb) to pass the ball to him. I can send you link with my tactic so you can try it and see how it works for you
    I've found that, especially with such full backs that are so comfortable with the ball; Danny Wilson for me is averaging around 8.0 this season simply because he makes so many passes and defends well.

    Playing Barcelona is relatively easy in suffice of winning trophies, but I see the challenge to try and replicate their real-life style of play. So hopefully FM12 will be able to carry this out better than my experiences on 11. Will load up the demo this evening after I've finished my season on 11, so if you could give me a link for you tactic to have a look at would be great

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    Quote Originally Posted by tommonufc View Post
    I've found that, especially with such full backs that are so comfortable with the ball; Danny Wilson for me is averaging around 8.0 this season simply because he makes so many passes and defends well.

    Playing Barcelona is relatively easy in suffice of winning trophies, but I see the challenge to try and replicate their real-life style of play. So hopefully FM12 will be able to carry this out better than my experiences on 11. Will load up the demo this evening after I've finished my season on 11, so if you could give me a link for you tactic to have a look at would be great
    you've got link in pm

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    Why not put it up for 'public' download so more of ud could give it a go? I'm really, really interested in seeing how you managed to get Xavi's pass amount up to that level ;)

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    Quote Originally Posted by rune_star View Post
    Why not put it up for 'public' download so more of ud could give it a go? I'm really, really interested in seeing how you managed to get Xavi's pass amount up to that level ;)
    well i hope to get some more passing from xavi so i did not put it here, but here is link... any feedback is welcome, I know that there is a lot of fm fans that want to get statistic in game like "real life" barca

    http://www.fileserve.com/file/Gahwc4..._Sep_2011).tac
    Last edited by krunccrni; 08-10-2011 at 06:10.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krunccrni View Post








    All that looks really good (all the screenshots in all your posts).

    There are/were two Barca tactics for FM11 that could achieve the same/similar possession and pass completion stats. One was created in Classic Mode, the other one with heavily modified TC instructions.

    Is the tactic you are using on FM12 Demo same as the one you were using on FM11? Is it a 4-3-3 and what type? DM+2MCs or 3 MCs? AMRL+ST or 3 STs (wide or narrow)?

    I'm guessing you are using DM+2MCs+3 STs, low mentality, extremely short passing and very restricted individual settings (creative freedom, RFD, RWB, TTB, LS, Crosses). For sure slow tempo, narrow width, high D-line, high pressing, tight marking. What is your time wasting set to?

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    Quote Originally Posted by krunccrni View Post
    well i hope to get some more passing from xavi so i did not put it here, but here is link... any feedback is welcome, I know that there is a lot of fm fans that want to get statistic in game like "real life" barca

    http://www.fileserve.com/file/Gahwc4U/Tic-Tac_barca_1.3a_(Barcelona,_Sep_2011).tac
    Ah, I see you already are posting the tactic. But the link doesn't work for me. Could you repost it/upload it on a different server? Is it created in Classic mode or using the TC?

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    Quote Originally Posted by yonko View Post
    Ah, I see you already are posting the tactic. But the link doesn't work for me. Could you repost it/upload it on a different server? Is it created in Classic mode or using the TC?
    try now http://www.fileserve.com/file/Gahwc4...ep_2011%29.tac

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    Very interesting read, wwfan a couple of questions: How would you set the crossing on the tactics/team instructions panel both for a 433 and 343 formation? Secondly, at some point in the thread Los_Culés suggests to put xavi with forward run often, how can I set this? Thanks

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    I have completed the demo with both tactics described by wwfan in the thread, using the 4-3-3 formation away and 343 (or 370) for home games and away against "small" teams, I must say the results are impressive
    wwfan, I would still like to know how you would set up the crossing on the team instructions panel, any hints?

    here are two screenshots, if you have questions, shout

    Team




    Tactic analysis

    Last edited by gipsy; 09-10-2011 at 13:17.

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    how can i change the res on imageshack so that people can actually read the screenies?

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    The images in this forum are always set to 800x600 so that you don't get annoyingly large images clogging up the forum and slowing everything to a crawl.

    When you upload to imageshack there should be an option that says something like 'don't resize', click it and they'll stay the original size in imageshack then when users click on the image they should be directed to it's full-size counterpart. If you're playing on a large resolution then the image in the forum screenie will always be difficult to see.

    As regards your earlier question about Xavi and forward runs:
    For FM11-> Click on Xavi and then change the other half of the screen to see player instructions (this should be done automatically). Click on the advanced button (near the top right of the player instructions area I think). You'll then see all the sliders and options beneath the TC. There should be a slider for 'Runs From Deep' that can be set to rarely, default, often - Runs From Deep is the new term for Forward Runs and they are exactly the same. If you click it to often Xavi should move into more advanced positions more often when your team regain possession.

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    Thanks for the hint on imagehack furiousuk, it's working but in order to get full size pics, IE needs to be used, I'll try your suggestion for FWR

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    You know....I wonder how many MCs you can put on the field before it starts to hurt you defensively....

    I mean, theoretically, if you are a team of barca's pedigree and you are getting 70+% possession every game, playing with like 7 MCs shouldn't hold too many defensive issues right?

    I wonder if I worded that right....

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    I did try this experiment of using loads of midfielders and the results were, well, interesting.



    This shows my original interpretation with the average positions at half-time. The WB's continually drifted deeper than the DM's which meant that the opposition strikers were frequently played onside in dangerous positions. At half-time I changed the WB's to Wide Midfielders which greatly improved the situation. This meant that I finished the game with a compact 343 (DM,DM,DM, MR,MC,MC,ML, AMR,AMC,AML).




    This shot shows the final, disappointing, stats. The 5-0 scoreline is largely attributed to the fact that I am vastly superior to my opponent. A better team against me would certainly have scored many times, particularly if they had a quick FC, largely due to the FB's playing them onside. Attack wise it was quite potent as it encouraged the opposition to push forward and allowed soooo many through balls in behind but, as is most clear, it did not gain enough possession and when you are playing that high you need to control the ball.

    The reason for a lack of possession was 2-fold. Despite high closing down and plenty of roaming and CF the team liked to hold their shape which meant they didn't push forward to put pressure on the opposition defenders who were, in turn, quite reluctant to play forward passes as none were available. I have seen this type of thing in other threads too. The 2nd point is that my players were continually playing through-balls because they were always on, hence the high score line.

    This next shot shows how the central player played as a DM when not in possession (as is usual for Barca).




    However, you can already see that there is quite a hole developing in the middle. Any decent opposition would exploit that gap easily, but not on the counter as this next shot shows:



    The DM has withdrawn into the 'defensive line' whilst the FB's have pushed forward. The shape here is not entirely un-Barcelona like although one of my MC's has gone on a little jolly.

    The biggest problem was that the central 3 DM's didn't really operate at all like a back-line. Sometimes the DMC would push forward and leave a gap that wasn't covered whereas a lot of the time the DMCR & DMCL would push forward and leave the DM or FB's playing on-side the FCs. As the 2nd shot shows it plays so high the opposing FC's are often in a very dangerous position and surely decent opposition would use them whereas Partizan didn't really have the ability although they did, rarely, try this to no avail.

    As this was an experiment my team had almost no fluidity with the tactic so it might be that a lot of the problems could be ironed out with tactical fluidity and more extreme tweaks to elicit the behaviour you want to see but I have a feeling that your 'backline' would play so high that this defenderless formation wouldn't really work.

    Interesting though

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    furiousuk......well that was quick

    I say give it a few more games and see what happens

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    It seems that getting good amounts of possession is easier than it was in FM11. I think the new shouts 'play out from defence' and 'pass through defence' are great for a passing game. I also like the 'cross early' shout as the full-backs are happier to retain possession from deeper positions. While the previous two sentences might've sounded like an attempt to promote the game, it does feel easier to control the game against lesser teams that drop back.

    I just played a friendly with AS Roma. Using simple TC tactics I had 75% ball possession and Gago (dlp / def) completed 111 passes, a number which I never reached in FM11. I haven't played enough to make a judgment about teams that press higher up or are of higher quality but still I'm pretty excited that to have great possession %, I don't need to resort to classic tactics that make in-game tweaking so time-consuming.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aderow View Post
    furiousuk......well that was quick

    I say give it a few more games and see what happens
    It was something I had the idea for earlier (no back-line) but your post reminded me that I'd got some screenies!!

    If I had more time to play then it might be something I'd pursue, I think it would take ALOT of work to get to a solid tactic. It's extremely compact, as you'd expect, but the opposition didn't seem to have a great deal of success playing long over the top of everybody. This might be to do with the fact that my 'back-line' had a minimum of 15 for pace but it might also just have been that the opposition were rubbish, I suspect, unfortunately, that it is the latter.

    I think the shouts I used were the same as wwfan suggests in the opening post.

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    Quote Originally Posted by däkkä View Post
    It seems that getting good amounts of possession is easier than it was in FM11. I think the new shouts 'play out from defence' and 'pass through defence' are great for a passing game. I also like the 'cross early' shout as the full-backs are happier to retain possession from deeper positions. While the previous two sentences might've sounded like an attempt to promote the game, it does feel easier to control the game against lesser teams that drop back.

    I just played a friendly with AS Roma. Using simple TC tactics I had 75% ball possession and Gago (dlp / def) completed 111 passes, a number which I never reached in FM11. I haven't played enough to make a judgment about teams that press higher up or are of higher quality but still I'm pretty excited that to have great possession %, I don't need to resort to classic tactics that make in-game tweaking so time-consuming.
    Well, I've never used shouts, but I can't stress how important is to be very stingy with the FWR instruction. Eg. a simple flat 4-4-2 with both central mids set as deep lying playmakers with FWR rarely and your team will have a loads of possesion anyway.

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    Fascinating thread. I'm still deep in my FM11 save as Barca - currently using a 2-4-2-2 tactic, 2 CD's, then two WB's and two DM's, then two APM's and finally two strikers.

    Used much of wwfans strategy and philosophy (not formation)...one thing I do differently is use pass to feet rather than pass into space and retain possesion. My reasoning being Barca do play through balls but more often than not play patient (tica-tac) passing to feet prior to finding the right moment for the through ball. Perhaps retain possession + pass into space creates similar.

    Finding I get 60%+ possession most matches, sometimes 70%+ but when game is close more like 55%+...

    Other thing I thought to add is imho when Barca play 4-3-3 the forward three are more like (at least last season) - Messi (trequatista) - Pedro (AMLR) - Villa (STRCL). Villa seems to sit to the left of centre striker role rather than AML, certainly he drifts wide now and then but he is usually more advanced than AML and also more central most of the time. Almost half way between STRL and AML...?

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    just play Villa i the AML position in a 4-3-3 as you mentionned headcoat, he bags them for fun

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    I hope you will find a way to make this work for FM12 too.

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    I am using the exact tactic as laid out in the original post with Leicester in my FM12 career game, and it is a great tactic. Produces very nice football and solid at the back.
    P16, W13, D0, L3, F35, A10, GD+25, Pts39 (5 clear of 2nd).

    Leicester are predicted 5th and have a great squad for the division, ticked 'no transfers in first transfer window' and in November, so squads are 'as you were'.
    Injuries have hit hard, Beckford (starting FC) out for 2 months, Vassell (starting AMR, 9 goals in 11 lge games) also 2 months.

    Great tactic and I can delude myself that we are a mini Barca

    ** Edit, my DC's are both 'Limited Defenders' with a Cover / Stopper split - only change from original post
    Last edited by Braumiller; 22-10-2011 at 13:35. Reason: DC clarification

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    It's hard to fully replicate Barca but I'm doing (IMO) a fairly good job. Swansea City, every game in Premiership, I've had more possession and in large majority, even including United ..60%+. My deep lying playmaker makes around 60-80 passes per game, sometimes more and sometimes (Arsenal/City away, 45-50ish) against Man United, he made 93 passes out of 100 attempted which was pretty impressive. He's also only 19 so can only get better, while not too mention, more teams will possibly sit back after my 10th place finish when they play at home, so should mean get more and more on the ball.

    The problem is breaking teams down still, hard to get that balance between making good runs to get in behind but also making sure enough players are dropping deeper so there are always options on.

    A bit different to Barca in that I have both full backs bombing on and not just the one, although I guess Barca still do push on the other full back but not quite to the extent of Alves.

    Also, I play with a DM, CM, AM, ST ....again different. Danny Graham up front, I didn't want to try 'total football' in possibly the shape Barca play (when playing 4-3-3 as 3-4-3 is too difficult to replicate IMO)...where Messi drops in the hole, so I have got a striker in Graham that has runs from deep on 'medium' so he does both show and cause a goal threat. My attacking midfielder to be fair doesn't push on, so in that way, I do recreate the Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta feel to things, with Joe Allen, Verratti and J.Viera (not quite the same quality mind!)

    Trying to get both inside forwards to make runs in between full backs/centre backs. Sometimes to success, sometimes not so. Something I'm trying to work on, which hopefully will also keep allowing the wing backs to bomb on.

    I'm hoping once I bring in more quality and better players, it will grow as a tactic and only improve, rather than show little progression which I found on FM2011.

    Has anyone else been trying to keep this going?

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    With the addition of some new shouts in FM12, would you suggest adding 'Play out of defence' and 'Play through defence' to the list you posted wwfan?

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    Quote Originally Posted by martywigham View Post
    With the addition of some new shouts in FM12, would you suggest adding 'Play out of defence' and 'Play through defence' to the list you posted wwfan?
    Play out of defence, yes. Play through defence, no, as it will reduce Messi's runs.

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    Yes I wondered about play through defence. I guessed that if you were trying to implement this style with another team it might have this effect on the Trequartista, but with Messi specifically it might not be so much of a problem due to the high creative freedom and his Run With Ball Often PPM.

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    Im surprised noone has talked about width and tempo yet. With the setup from the first post, the width is narrow and the tempo is slow/mixed. Do Barca not play with very high width and high tempo (=less time on the ball, quicker passing)?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Benoit2 View Post
    Im surprised noone has talked about width and tempo yet. With the setup from the first post, the width is narrow and the tempo is slow/mixed. Do Barca not play with very high width and high tempo (=less time on the ball, quicker passing)?
    Not from my observations. Much of their passing is done in very tight spaces in the centre of the pitch, with only overlapping FBs providing width. Further, their game is slow-slow-fast rather than high tempo when in possession. They are certainly high tempo in defence, but many of their passing moves initiate with the ball being recycled to the back line and built from slow pass probing between the DCs and DMCs/MCs. It is only when space opens that they hit the accelerator.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    Not from my observations. Much of their passing is done in very tight spaces in the centre of the pitch, with only overlapping FBs providing width.
    Do their wingers not try to stretch the field of play by playing wide, near the touchline?

    Further, their game is slow-slow-fast rather than high tempo when in possession. They are certainly high tempo in defence, but many of their passing moves initiate with the ball being recycled to the back line and built from slow pass probing between the DCs and DMCs/MCs. It is only when space opens that they hit the accelerator.
    So how would you try to replicate one touch passing? Afaik, the Barca players often spend little time on the ball, as they very quickly pass it to someone else. You need high tempo for this to encourage players to quickly pass the ball.

    One of the downsides of the TC is that tempo and width cant also be adjusted up or down via a setting. If I change passing to short, it automatically drops width and tempo as well. It would be nice to also have options to change these two up or down. The only way now is to do it manually, but then it wont change at all when chaning strategies.
    Another downside if that you cant train tactics with shouts for match preparation. Now, you create and train a tactic, but you always play with a highly altered tactic.

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    imo they're passing the ball around at fastest possible rate which is basic element of tika taka. Xavi, Iniesta and Messi have complete freedom with the ball. it might apear they don't play at very fast tempo becouse the ball doesn't move forward quickly but that is the difference between posessional and direct/counter-attacking style. translated into FM words tempo is fast with little amount of players playing through balls, so that passing is into feet. key element is mentality which should be quite low so that the ball doesn't move forward quickly. unfortunatly there are many downsides of low mentality which can't get you replicate Barca style even further.

    central diamond Busqets-Xavi-Iniesta-Messi is the base for Barca posessional play. Camp Nou is a huge ground and Barca are taking advantage of it. width is provided by fullbacks with ALves being more like winger but left back much more conservative (no metter who plays there). wingers both provide width and move inside, providing passing options when needed on wing or cutting in and moving inside and around the box depending on where the ball is.
    Last edited by Mitja; 03-11-2011 at 09:10.

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    @wwfan: one of the key concepts of Guardiola's football philosophy is that the midfielders should never try to hang on to the ball if they recieve it with their back to the goal. Since they indeed as you state pass the ball around among the defenders to lure the opponents up, this results in a lot of passes from defenders to defenders, defenders to midfielders and then straight back to defenders. When you look carefully, eventhough the midfielders are extremely good with the ball, they rarely even try to hang on to the ball or look for a different passing option - they send it straight back to the defence. Only when they have managed to lure the opposition high enough for Xavi, Messi, Fabregas or Iniesta to find space between defence and midfield of the opponents, do they try a through ball, and only then does the reciever try to turn around and "make something happen". Is this emulated in your tactics, and if not, can it be?

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    Also, is it not true you should use hard tackling to make your players try to win the ball back quickly? With easy tackling, they give too much time on the ball for the opponent. With hard tackling, they'll be quicker to engage. I think a better description of the tackling slider is rarely, mixed, often, rather than easy, mixed, hard..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Benoit2 View Post
    Also, is it not true you should use hard tackling to make your players try to win the ball back quickly? With easy tackling, they give too much time on the ball for the opponent. With hard tackling, they'll be quicker to engage. I think a better description of the tackling slider is rarely, mixed, often, rather than easy, mixed, hard..
    The type of tackling doesn't mean he will tackle quicker at all though, just how agressive the tackle is. So the current description is fine. Hard tackling means they will attempt a tackle even if there is only 10% chance of winning it. Easy is like when a player is certain they will win the challenge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleon View Post
    The type of tackling doesn't mean he will tackle quicker at all though, just how agressive the tackle is. So the current description is fine. Hard tackling means they will attempt a tackle even if there is only 10% chance of winning it. Easy is like when a player is certain they will win the challenge.
    You seem to contradict yourself. First you say that tackling is how aggressive the tackle will be. This means that in a particular situation, it doesnt matter what the tackling setting is, a player will go for the tackle. However, with hard tackling, he will go in more aggressively. Probably more physical contact, more chance of injury, more chance of yellow card. With easy tackling, a player would go in less physically. Less chance of winning the ball, but also less chance of injuries or cards.

    However, then you say that with hard tackling, a player will go in even if there's just a 10% chance of winning the ball. With easy tackling, he would only tackle when he's certain to win it. This means that in a particular situtation, the tackling setting does determine whether the player will go in. This is exactly what I was saying as well. Hard tackling means going for it, even if the chance isnt big of winning. Its the aggressiveness of the player himself which in this case would determine just how hard/physical the tackle will be. This also means you'll have a higher number of attempted tackles. Thats my point. Because with easy tackling, you'll have fewer tackles (which is why 'rarely' would be a better description), therefore your opponent will have an easier time on the ball, as they will be challenged less often.

    You do agree that there's a difference between how often a player goes for a tackle, and how hard/physical he will go in for the tackle? Which of the two, in your opinion, is what the tackling setting does?

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    You seem to contradict yourself. First you say that tackling is how aggressive the tackle will be. This means that in a particular situation, it doesnt matter what the tackling setting is, a player will go for the tackle. However, with hard tackling, he will go in more aggressively. Probably more physical contact, more chance of injury, more chance of yellow card. With easy tackling, a player would go in less physically. Less chance of winning the ball, but also less chance of injuries or cards.
    Yes thats true.

    However, then you say that with hard tackling, a player will go in even if there's just a 10% chance of winning the ball. With easy tackling, he would only tackle when he's certain to win it. This means that in a particular situtation, the tackling setting does determine whether the player will go in. This is exactly what I was saying as well.
    It doesn't make the tackle happen faster though, it just determines how agressive the challenge is. For them to challenge faster would be mentality and closing down. Which is why I got confused because originally you said;

    Also, is it not true you should use hard tackling to make your players try to win the ball back quickly?
    For that you would need to close down heavily with a high dline to increase the chance he'd use the required attributes.

    You do agree that there's a difference between how often a player goes for a tackle, and how hard/physical he will go in for the tackle? Which of the two, in your opinion, is what the tackling setting does?
    Tackling is the aggressivness and his attributes determine how often.

    Ultimatley his attributes would determine how often he tackles.

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    Im pretty sure I understand your viewpoint, which is that tackling determines how hard/aggressive a tackle will be.

    However, what still doesnt add up for me, is your claim that hard tackling means a player will go in, even if there's a 10% chance. Because this claim talks about frequency of tackling, not aggressiveness. To add to that, your last claim is that attributes determine how often a player will go in. So everything you say pretty much points to one direction, except for that particular sentence. Could you clarify that?
    Also, by attributes, do you mean player attributes (if so, which one would encourage more/less tackling?), or tactical instructions?

    If we than also look at the names of the two shouts 'get stuck in' and 'stay on feet', and realize that these simply translate to hard/easy tackling, the names do not suggest a change in tackling frequency, but rather tackling style. This fits with your viewpoint, correct? So basically, easy tackling equates to trying to poke the ball away, whereas hard tackling means flying in along the ground, not caring whether you take both the ball as well as the man. Correct?

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    However, what still doesnt add up for me, is your claim that hard tackling means a player will go in, even if there's a 10% chance. Because this claim talks about frequency of tackling, not aggressiveness. To add to that, your last claim is that attributes determine how often a player will go in. So everything you say pretty much points to one direction, except for that particular sentence. Could you clarify that?
    Also, by attributes, do you mean player attributes (if so, which one would encourage more/less tackling?), or tactical instructions?
    10% chance of winning the ball, its still aggressivness. What doesn't add up? Tackling (the slider) is about how aggressive the tackle the player makes are. So on hard he will still try and tackle even if he knows he might not win the ball.

    Also, by attributes, do you mean player attributes (if so, which one would encourage more/less tackling?), or tactical instructions?
    Yeah player attributes. Decisions, agression, composure, tackling, workrate, positioning all come into play. As for tactical instructions dline, closing down all help increase the chance of getting the tackle in earlier due to been pushed up and closing down heavily.

    If we than also look at the names of the two shouts 'get stuck in' and 'stay on feet', and realize that these simply translate to hard/easy tackling, the names do not suggest a change in tackling frequency, but rather tackling style. This fits with your viewpoint, correct? So basically, easy tackling equates to trying to poke the ball away, whereas hard tackling means flying in along the ground, not caring whether you take both the ball as well as the man. Correct?
    Yes spot on. The names say it all to me of the shouts, I think they are correct. As a kid I was told to get stuck in and that meant be more aggressive in the challenge. When they say stay on your feet it meant don't rush sliding in etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleon View Post
    10% chance of winning the ball, its still aggressivness. What doesn't add up?
    That you seem to suggest that when there's only a 10% chance of winning the ball, a player will go for it on hard, but not on easy tackling, in identical circumstances. If tackling doesnt determine frequency, but only aggressiveness, than it shouldnt matter how big or how small the chance is, the player is equally like to try and get the ball, regardless of easy or hard tackling. So if a player decides to go for it with a 10% chance, a player on easy tackling should also go for it with just 10% chance, except he will just stick a leg out to try and nick the ball away, rather than make a sliding tackle.

    You understand my confusion? (only with this particular argument)

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    Let's use this image as a real-world example. It shows the progress of an inverted winger, the white circle, as he progresses down the line before coming inside on his stronger foot. The grey circle is the defender, who is jockeying the attacker as he dribbles. At point #1, the defender had just arrived at the attacker, having moved to close him down. He has a decision to make - do I tackle or not? There are too many variables in play to determine exactly what he might do at this point. First, you have his attributes - aggression, tackling, composure, concentration, decisions, etc. These are known to you, but not controlled by you. Then, you have his hidden variables like dirtiness. Finally*, you have the manager's input - his closing down, mentality, tackling (perhaps even creative freedom). Given that everything else is equal except tackling instruction, would the player be more likely to tackle at #1, #2 or #3? Personally, I cannot say absolutely. I can hypothesise that hard tackling will result in the player tending to tackle a greater percentage of the time at #1 than #2 or #3. I can also hypothesise that it doesn't matter whether or not he has hard tackling because it affects only style of tackle, not frequency (which are determined by tests against other attributes and settings). For this latter hypothesis, whether he tackles at #1, #2 or #3 is irrelevant but, when he does tackle, it will be 'hard'.

    Cleon, when you referred to 'percentage likelihood of attempting a tackle' you favoured the first hypothesis. However, you also said that it does not affect how quick the player is to tackle, which falls into the second hypothesis. Thus, the contradiction.

    For what it's worth, I think I sway toward the latter hypothesis. Logically, it makes more sense.The options aren't labelled 'rarely', 'mixed', 'often', like other sliders, which would directly imply frequency. Instead, they are labelled 'easy', 'normal', 'hard' which imply style. Also, it means that you can vary style and frequency independently: a defender with a very low mentality (ie: extremely risk averse) will only tackle when sure of getting the ball. Coupled with hard tackling from the second hypothesis, when he does finally choose to make this tackle, he will do so in with a hard style (ie: more likely to cause a foul but also more likely to stop the attacker). However, if you used the hard tackling definition from the first hypothesis, then you dilute the aversion to risk for this defender - albeit only with respect to tackling.

    *Not finally at all, there are many, many other things at play: morale, motivation, condition, match practice etc.
    Last edited by ZdlR; 03-11-2011 at 15:01.

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Benoit2 View Post
    That you seem to suggest that when there's only a 10% chance of winning the ball, a player will go for it on hard, but not on easy tackling, in identical circumstances. If tackling doesnt determine frequency, but only aggressiveness, than it shouldnt matter how big or how small the chance is, the player is equally like to try and get the ball, regardless of easy or hard tackling. So if a player decides to go for it with a 10% chance, a player on easy tackling should also go for it with just 10% chance, except he will just stick a leg out to try and nick the ball away, rather than make a sliding tackle.

    You understand my confusion? (only with this particular argument)
    It's hard trying to find the right words to describe what I mean. Let me try another way;

    A players attributes determine how and why the tackle is made. Decisions, workrate, concentration etc. The tackling slider just indicates how aggressive the tackle will be when the player decides to attempt it. A defender with hard tackling set will look to give his all in the challenge even if he risks injuring himself or picking up a card or whatever. Someone with easy tackling will still tackle but won't be wreckless in his challenge. Now this is were it gets tricky. What determines that point of the tackle is down to closing down. If for example someone is set to stand off but given hard tackling they will make the tackle at the very last point of their zone (well that's the theory if they have good anticipation, concentration, decisions etc). Someone with hard tackling and closing down often would look to make that attempted tackle a lot sooner, as someone enters his so called zone.

    You can't isolate the slider on its own as it has far too many variables. Grrrr still don't think I've put across what I'm trying to say properly. My head is elsewhere and is focused on getting married tomorrow. So my apologies if it still doesn't make sense for you, but hopefully you get what I'm trying to say.

  87. #87
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    My head is elsewhere and is focused on getting married tomorrow.
    Congrats. Who's the lucky chap then?

    ;)

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by wwfan View Post
    Congrats. Who's the lucky chap then?

    ;)
    Thank you kind sir and he's called Tim

  89. #89
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    Get off the forum Cleon! Have a wonderful day and honeymoon. Don't report in for a week!

  90. #90
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    Have a wonderfull day tomorrow Cleon!

  91. #91
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    Thumbs up

    Really interested in this thread. I'd tried to create a modern 4-5-1 / 4-3-3 and had done an OK job.
    A few roles and duties differed between my attempts and this, and by tweaking I can already see the benefits of making those changes.
    Have also just started using a new skin, so all in all a good night so far!

  92. #92
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    I'm currently using a tactic that is sort of a mix between wwfan's approach at making a Barca tactic, and Mantralux' FM 2011 Arsenal tactic. http://www.mantralux.com/2010/11/the...senal-4-2-3-1/
    A few tweaks to combine the two, like using a complete forward instead of a trequartista up front (van Persie instead of Messi), and setting the overall team tempo, width and DL a little bit different than the tactic wizard comes up with, and a few tweaks in the individual instructions. The result is very very good indeed ... so far, 21 matches into the season, I have (w)18-(d)3-(l)0 (with Arsenal). Total goal difference 64-14. The goals just keeps coming, allmost equally distributed between van Persie, Gervinho and Walcott. Amazing. And that with a Gunners line-up that is far from optimal.
    I use the same shouts at the start of every game that wwfan does ... Barca and Arsenal plays much of the same game.
    Last edited by thomit; 17-11-2011 at 09:14.

  93. #93
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    Just started looking at this system, how would you adjust things? Say if you need a goal or need to keep a lead?

  94. #94
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    Me, I never change anything, except subs. I guess shouts like "pass to feet" instead of "pass into space", and take off the "work ball into box" shout, remove the runs instructions - stuff like that, if you just want to keep the ball to defend a narrow lead. But I have rarely been in need of that.
    If i desperately need goals (not had much of that either, to be honest), I just sub under-performing attacking players, maybe use the get ball forward shout .... but I think the latter would have little effect, due to inherent attacking nature of this tactic and these players, really. Move the biggest and bestest headers up front and use the "pump ball into box" shout, if you're really really desperate ;) But that is not really Barca's or Arsenal's way, is it ...

    Edit: Well well ... finished the season as champions: 29-9-0 111-25 96Pts.! Won the FA cup 3-0 vs. Stoke in the finals ... Won the Champions League 1-0 in the last few seconds of the extras vs. Real Madrid. They got a player (Higuain) red carded early, and my players knocked on the door the whole match, but couldn't get passed Casillas ... untill the very last minute.
    Absolutely thrilling. My gf thought I was going mad, screaming at the computer screen like an idiot. And needlessly to say - I'm going to stick to this "mixed" tactic for a while ;) It looks really good in the 3D view as well.
    Last edited by thomit; 18-11-2011 at 13:09.

  95. #95
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    Guys, any ideas how to make players make more passes?

  96. #96
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    Can I just say, wwfan, this tactic is pretty much spot on.

    The game's interpretation of dribbling seems slightly off, and players with the PPM Long Shots will still shoot too often, but well done, sir.

  97. #97
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    Hmm, saying that, I've given it more of a bash and found (despite now having a DM) that my defence is very leaky (was using a flat 442 with two DLP, one Support and one Defend).

    I've also found my possession is very poor, looking at 35% in some games.

    I'm Manchester United, and whilst I don't have the best team in the world, I have won the league both seasons so far, and reached the CL final this.

    Team is usually:

    -----------------------De Gea
    Rafael/Fabio, Evans/Smalling, Vidic/Rio, Evra/Angel
    -------------------Fletcher/Jones
    ----------Carrick/Anderson, Costa/Cleverley
    Nani/Morrisson---------------------Young/Sturridge
    ------------------Rooney/Macheda

  98. #98

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    Hi there !

    This sum screenie of my project about making mediocre team play Barca-esque style.
    I'm using Swansea btw,



    Sum best passes record from my playmaker (Joe Allen), and he consist producing 80+ pass every match. After half season my Swansea just sitting at 7th place EPL. So, I create new game with Swansea again to make the tactic more sharp in attack.

    So far looks good, CCC increases, but the consequences my playmaker pass is reduced.

    Last edited by bhocielbaru@yahoo.com; 24-11-2011 at 02:32.

  99. #99
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    bhocielbaru@yahoo.com, what tactic are you using?

  100. #100

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    Quote Originally Posted by Exius View Post
    bhocielbaru@yahoo.com, what tactic are you using?
    I'm using 4-2-3-1 with radically tweak of course

    And now my concern is the tactic very easy conceded from counter.
    Vs Man U, I've got 60% possession, equally CCC (2 each), and Joe Allen got outstanding 85 pass. But I've lost 2-0 all from counter. Any suggest about that?
    Last edited by bhocielbaru@yahoo.com; 24-11-2011 at 01:44.

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