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FM Veteran - a new blog


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Football Manager Veteran

A new blog dedicated to FM

So it pretty much says it in the title, I'm a long (loooong) time CM/FM player and have decided to start up my own blog to share the stories of my own games as well as offering advice and tips to fellow FM players.

Whilst the blog isn't aimed at complete FM newbies, I hope that it's put forward in a straight-forward, unpatronising fashion where it isn't buzzword bingo and it isn't an attempt to recreate Inverting the Pyramid for FM. I like to think that I know a bit about FM tactics and I'll be posting a few articles on that subject but I enjoy other sides of the game and many of the articles will be on game mechanics off the pitch.

To give you a flavour of what you can expect, here are a few of the articles I've written so far:

Shrew's Club and Country Guide

Financial Prudence in FM Part 1 and Part 2

An update on my Rapid Wien / Austria save

Shrew's Guide to Tutoring in FM

With a smattering of my musings on real-life football, I hope it's an enjoyable read that brings some new aspects of Football Manager to life.

Click here to access FM Veteran - an addict's ramblings on Football Manager

You can also follow me on Twitter to keep up to date with new articles and/or listen to more of my ramblings!

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Thanks Cleon, really appreciate the kind words.

Still very much looking to get off the starting blocks really. Tutoring is one of my pet passions in the game, going hand in hand with my love for developing youth talents so I hope that people find that particular article useful.

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  • 2 weeks later...

There are a couple of new articles on the blog since I last updated here, both concerning my new Toulouse FC save:

The Beginning... - details squad analysis, setting up the tactic, identifying transfer targets, etc.

The first month... - details the first 5 games and the impact they've had on tweaking my tactic and forcing me into further transfer activity.

Also wanted to say a huge thank you to Rob Barns-Graham and the SI lads who helped publicise the blog through Twitter. The Exploiting the Pocket article has proven to be hugely popular judging by the number of hits so thanks!!

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For those who might have been reading, I've now posted a full season's worth of the Toulouse save which goes into great detail on how I play FM, as follows:

The Beginning... - squad analysis, initial tactical thinking and identifying transfer targets as well as other early season activities.

The first month - how the early games affect my tactical thinking and the scramble for August signings.

Pre-xmas update - after the tactic has settled in, it gives me a chance to really dissect where I think we're going right and where we're going wrong. Early ideas for January transfers are formed.

Post-xmas update - the January window activity is summarised and a final version of the tactic is settled upon with detail given as to why I've gone down that route.

Season Review - after the dust has settled, how successful have we managed to be, where have I gone wrong, how did the tactic work out and what do I need to do to prepare for next season...

Hope you enjoy reading as it's been a great exercise for me writing and articulating my particular method of playing the game.

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Thanks lads, appreciate it.

Romanista - glad you found the other blogs too. There are some fantastic sites out there ith really useful and well written pieces on the game that don't get the publicity they deserve. It's always nice for us each to do our bit to help each other out.

Incidentally, I've put a new post up today making my deep 4-3-3 available for download including full (and I mean full) explanation of how the tactic works, recommended attributes for each position, etc. If you're interested, you can find it here.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Plenty of action on FM Veteran since my last update here.

The latest update on my Toulouse save can be found here whilst the earlier instalments are also available. I tend to cover a lot in the updates: ranging from simple updates on the results to date as well as transfers and analysis into the performance of the tactic and players.

Indeed, you can also find a review of my tactic on ForzaH's FM Analysis blog here - not on my blog but it's related to my work so thought I'd include it.

I've also opened up a Facebook page where you can get reminders of new articles that have been posted on the blog as well as have the opportunity to discuss any topics that are raised; or simply ask questions about your own game. To get involved, just "like" this Facebook page.

To give you a flavour of what to expect from FM Veteran, here's an excerpt from the detailed post on my deep 4-3-3 which is available for download on the blog.

The Philosophy

I want to not concede many goals, right? But also score lots of goals, yeah? Got it? Ground breaking stuff. Some more detail? I want to make this more likely by having lots of shots and making sure my opponent has very few shots. Ok, I’m being stupid but the point I’m trying to get across is that I can say almost anything here and try to pick out some buzzwords or copy phrases I’ve read on Zonal Marking et al to make myself sound all clever but it really doesn’t mean very much without specifics.

So specifics… well I really do want to concede very few goals. I’ve had a few games recently where I’ve played very attacking football and simply looked to out-score my opponents. The last few tactics that I have released, such as The Sexhibition and Pink Panther, have been very attacking. In line with my original analysis of the Toulouse squad revealing a strong defensive base, I decided to make this tactic more about establishing a solid defensive system first and then tackling the offensive movement later. The most basic way of doing this is defending in numbers, however even at an early stage I was aware that I don’t simply want to gift possession to the opposition and line 10 players up in front of our own goal; nor do I want to keep so many players in defensive positions when we have the ball that we provide no attacking threat. So it’s a case of trying to find a way to defend in numbers but also attack in numbers.

My initial plan was to use the 3DMC’s to maintain domination of the ball and aid our quest for conceding as few goals as possible by keeping the ball from opponents. However, the PPM’s of two of my deep midfielders precluded that and lead me into an alternative method – simply restricting the amount of time the opposition can have the ball in dangerous areas but allowing them to keep it where they can’t hurt us. More on that later.

When we have the ball, I favour attacking from various angles to confuse the AI and drag defenders out of position. We all know that the match engine heavily favours extreme pace up front but I’m keen to try something different and attempt to build a tactic that uses a physical targetman that looks to take defenders out of the game by holding the ball up and developing the move for the other players that move around him.

So that’s the basic idea of the tactic… now on to how it’s supposed to work

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  • 4 weeks later...

For those who are wanting to follow a long term save, then I've just posted the first update on my latest Club and Country save for FM13 - with Rapid Wien and Austria.

On FM11, a similar game took me from release day to the day that FM12 was released and while I can't guarantee that this will be the same, it's bound to be an epic game given the type of save I'll be running.

You can find all the details here: http://footballmanagerveteran.wordpress.com/2012/11/02/rapid-and-austria-the-beginning-of-the-journey/

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  • 5 months later...

Probably about time I brought this thread up to date and advertised a few things that have been posted on FM Veteran recently.

Firstly, a brand new tactical article looking at how I analyse my tactics, try to spot problems and make changes to rectify those problems. It includes a case study of a recent game with masses of videos and a few screenshots to help illustrate my points:

Analysing your tactic and spotting problems

Then there are 18 updates on my epic Feralpi Salò save as I take an Italian minnow and turn them into the dominant force in Italian football, although we're yet to secure that elusive Champions League! Throughout the save, I've used a strikerless tactic - evolving from a counter attacking version to the new control one now that we're dominant. Each update contains details of the tactics, player analysis and details on squad building that I hope provide a little more than just a career story

The Feralpi Salò Story - Developing a minnow

Finally, I've also posted a guide as to how I conduct scouting and transfers - looking at the complete process from how I identify the need for a player, how I decide what I want and how I then find it.

A guide to scouting and transfers, aka how to make a simple process as complicated as possible

I hope you can find something to your liking within all that!

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  • 8 months later...

Still going strong over at FM Veteran with plenty of new material for Football Manager 14 and plenty more planned for the coming year.

I've been joined by a second writer this year as a friend of mine challenged me to a network save. A first for me, you can read about our exploits here.

I've also started a second career of my own - an alternative cantera with Deportivo Alavés. With the demise of my Rapid Wien / Austria club and country save, I've moved to Spain with the aim of developing Alavés along similar lines to Athletic Bilbao - a reliance of Basque players. That story can be found here.

In addition to that, I am contributing to the Clear Cut Chance FM e-book which is well worth checking out and will be adding standalone tactical articles to the site as the year progresses.

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