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The Art of Counter Attacking


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Do you think you can have more than 2 attacking duties if your formation is bottom heavy? I mean, there must be certain behaviours under the hood that triggers the CT, but I felt we still need people to burst forward once the CT is launched and the attacking duties seem more prone to do that at least in my short experience. 

 

Of course, an attacking duty might disrupt the defensive organization, but if you find a balance in the tactic it could work?

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22 minutes ago, Armistice said:

Do you think you can have more than 2 attacking duties if your formation is bottom heavy? I mean, there must be certain behaviours under the hood that triggers the CT, but I felt we still need people to burst forward once the CT is launched and the attacking duties seem more prone to do that at least in my short experience. 

 

Of course, an attacking duty might disrupt the defensive organization, but if you find a balance in the tactic it could work?

An attacking duty means they are already advanced. It can work but you don't have to have them. After all, when a counter attack is triggered under the hood, players passing, tempo and mentality is maxed out for those involved with the move. So they'd already be playing like someone on attack. I think I spoke about this in the article. Like anything its all about the balance :)

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I think @herne79 said it best in the third (I think it was the third) reply in this thread;

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Great stuff. Please sticky this, at least for the time being.

For me, the thing I always think when I see people post "counter attacking" tactics asking for help is they try to use TIs and player roles to tell the players how to counter - when they should actually be using the TIs and roles to tell the players how to play when they are not on the counter, as the ME selects how to play during a counter attack. I think that's where a lot of the confusion lies.

This applies to roles and duties too. If you're using a bottom heavy tactic like you mentioned, then set up for how you want to play when a counter attack is on. 

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You can set up a direct style quite easily. A lot of people often confuse counter attacking with direct style of attacks but both approaches are actually different. But yes you should be able to achieve a direct style with more direct passing, higher tempo etc.

As for the second questions, if its a counter attack triggered by under the hood mechanics which require a certain amount of players vs a certain amount of the oppositions players then for those players involved in the move, the game knows who they are and changes the passing to direct, mentality to highest and tempo to fastest. This is all done automatically and will override any natural settings the player has.

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On 4 octombrie 2017 at 17:32, Cleon said:

You can set up a direct style quite easily. A lot of people often confuse counter attacking with direct style of attacks but both approaches are actually different. But yes you should be able to achieve a direct style with more direct passing, higher tempo etc.

As for the second questions, if its a counter attack triggered by under the hood mechanics which require a certain amount of players vs a certain amount of the oppositions players then for those players involved in the move, the game knows who they are and changes the passing to direct, mentality to highest and tempo to fastest. This is all done automatically and will override any natural settings the player has.

So in other words, it doesn't matter if it's a winger or a CM who starts the counter, they will both act a certain way which leads to the development of the counter-attack? I just want to know this because I need to weigh how much roles will affect the development of my counter-attacks compared to normal build-up play. This has been a general confusion in these type of systems.

Edited by Armistice
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  • 2 weeks later...

I tried a 5-3-2-WB tactic for counter attacking but struggle with clean sheets and creating chances + scoring goals.

My tactic: Counter + Flexible

Player: GKd - 3x CDd - 2x WBs - BBMs CMs CMa - DLFa DLFs/DFs

The CMs is my hidden playmaker with PIs: hold position, shoot less often, more risky passes

I know that my problem can be caused by the selected players but would like to know if I can improve anything.

I experimented with TI look for overlap to have both WB a little bit more attacking but don't see much benefit. I changed to Defend for my last two matches as I'm struggling (14/15 of 18) and won both games 2:1.

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13 minutes ago, YasoKuul said:

I tried a 5-3-2-WB tactic for counter attacking but struggle with clean sheets and creating chances + scoring goals.

My tactic: Counter + Flexible

Player: GKd - 3x CDd - 2x WBs - BBMs CMs CMa - DLFa DLFs/DFs

The CMs is my hidden playmaker with PIs: hold position, shoot less often, more risky passes

I know that my problem can be caused by the selected players but would like to know if I can improve anything.

I experimented with TI look for overlap to have both WB a little bit more attacking but don't see much benefit. I changed to Defend for my last two matches as I'm struggling (14/15 of 18) and won both games 2:1.

Have a think about who's managing that all important space between your defence and midfield, and so where the protection for your central defenders is coming from.

And btw Look For Overlap instructs wingers (not central midfielders) to hold the ball up to wait for an overlapping full/wing back which is probably why you didn't see much benefit.

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Yup plenty of options.  They (and others such as adjusting the defensive line or using a different type of player for example) could work, it all depends on how you see your players best covering the space and how it balances with the rest of your team.

If you start to experiment start small.  Change a player duty for example or swap one of your midfielders for a tough tackler/harder worker.  See how that goes before moving on to trying something else.

Trial and error I'm afraid - there is no "do this and it's guaranteed to work" unfortunately.

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Thanks herne79, I'll try a CMd instead of a CMs first as I don't like the "Tackle Harder" PI of a DMs.

Edit: I tried the CMd for a few games, but missed the support in attack and noticed bad positioning while defending. I switched from flexible to fluid for a compact shape plus TI "be more disciplined" as I don't want the players to be too expressive.

Edited by YasoKuul
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2 hours ago, vanWolfstwinkle said:

Is it wise to play a counter-attacking style of football against a team with lower rep that parks the bus? It seems hard to get their players to play more attacking so you can nick the ball and attack

No I don't think it's a viable strategy.

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12 hours ago, vanWolfstwinkle said:

Is it wise to play a counter-attacking style of football against a team with lower rep that parks the bus? It seems hard to get their players to play more attacking so you can nick the ball and attack

Remember that counter attacking (how I describe in the OP) is what happens under the hood when you win the ball back and have X amount of players against Y. So you ideally set the team up to play (in a low block still) how you want when you have possession of the ball. Naturally when a counter attack isn't on, it turns into a possession tactic. So it's up to you with the roles you select whether you want it to be possession or more forward thinking. 

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10 hours ago, Cleon said:

Remember that counter attacking (how I describe in the OP) is what happens under the hood when you win the ball back and have X amount of players against Y. So you ideally set the team up to play (in a low block still) how you want when you have possession of the ball. Naturally when a counter attack isn't on, it turns into a possession tactic. So it's up to you with the roles you select whether you want it to be possession or more forward thinking. 

When you say it works under the hood to my understanding that means when your team wins the ball back and the opposition has committed a certain amount of players forward your players will identify that and everything will be turned up to attack directly and quickly?

With that in mind does it matter to the ME where on the pitch your team wins the ball back. For example if your two forwards disposes a defender or a DM and have a 3v3 or 2v3 situation will they attack in the same way from that far up the pitch or does it need to be in your own half?

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Going to give the counterattacking style a go again, after a proper read of this and wwfans 12 steps, hopefully I'll fare better this time :p

 

Thinking of going with the following setup for Coventry on the FM18 demo, playing with Balanced/Fluid and Counter, no TI or PI for the moment

 

Gk 

FB (Su) - CD (De) - CD (De) - FB (Su)

DM (De)

WM (Su) - CM (Su) - BBM (Su) - WM (Su)

 

DLF (Su)

 

 

My only issues are 1) the CM (su) seems as if he could be too generic a role, but I've seen playmakers can hinder the effectiveness of counters and BWM I think would take away from the DM's job. Would having a BBM, as well as the other BBM and WMs leave the defensive lines too open/exposed/too much of a gap for transition

2) the lone striker, i've played a lot with a lone DLF this year (admittedly not great ones) and have found that they're often not as lethal as I'd like. Now that could easily be my players and tactics, but would there be a better choice of role? I think AF would be too isolated, and F9 and T are too close to playmakers that would take away from the counter style. To me a P wouldnt work because he wouldnt come deep enough to win the ball I don't have much experience of CF or DF to say whether they could work solo.

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  • 3 weeks later...
37 minutes ago, beverage1982 said:

Sorry if this has already been covered but could you stick a targetman in this approach? I've always gone with a DLF in it but wondering if the TM would be isolated in 4141? 

If you use a TM then your not just playing a counter strategy (assuming the rest of your setup creates one) but a more direct style even when there isn't an opportunity to counter attack.

I personally wouldn't use a TM in a 4141, I think he's best in a front pair or at least with a AMC to get up with him.

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On 03/10/2017 at 19:19, Cleon said:

An attacking duty means they are already advanced. It can work but you don't have to have them. After all, when a counter attack is triggered under the hood, players passing, tempo and mentality is maxed out for those involved with the move. So they'd already be playing like someone on attack. I think I spoke about this in the article. Like anything its all about the balance :)

Just reading this post, do you know how the game works "under the hood" as you describe it? does the under the hood knowledge mean you try and win knowing how this works, or mostly go with sound football principles?

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2 hours ago, FMunderachiever said:

Just reading this post, do you know how the game works "under the hood" as you describe it? does the under the hood knowledge mean you try and win knowing how this works, or mostly go with sound football principles?

If you read my threads you’d know the answer to this considering I spend hours explaining principles and  concepts rather than how to beat the ME.

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23 minutes ago, Cleon said:

If you read my threads you’d know the answer to this considering I spend hours explaining principles and  concepts rather than how to beat the ME.

Yeah fair point but your concepts dont mean anything if they cant beat the ME, so theyre at least partly inspired by beating the ME no? its why i draw a distinction between real life football and this game, because stuff on the game wouldnt win in real life football sometimes. And vice versa.

your threads are good btw you should do real coaching with a team, not waste time on a game mate. waste of your talents. Coach kids or something. More rewarding. Or a decent local side?

Youd also be good on the tactical breakdowns on youtube of matches played, theyre good too.

Edited by FMunderachiever
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Yeah fair point but your concepts dont mean anything if they cant beat the ME, so theyre at least partly inspired by beating the ME no? its why i draw a distinction between real life football and this game, because stuff on the game wouldnt win in real life football sometimes. And vice versa

No they're not focused on beating the ME at all. What I talk about and discuss are footballing principles and how they work and discuss how to implement them into FM. Beating the ME is something completely different and if I wrote about that, would be much shorter than the articles I do. I could write in one paragraph how to beat the AI and tell users how to achieve 95% success rate. But there's no point, I'd rather focus on trying to stick to sound footballing concepts that work in real life as opposed to beating the ME.

Quote

your threads are good btw you should do real coaching with a team, not waste time on a game mate. waste of your talents. Coach kids or something. More rewarding. Or a decent local side?

It's not wasted, I already have my Uefa B license and how do you know I don't already coach a side? :brock:

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1 minute ago, Cleon said:

No they're not focused on beating the ME at all. What I talk about and discuss are footballing principles and how they work and discuss how to implement them into FM. Beating the ME is something completely different and if I wrote about that, would be much shorter than the articles I do. I could write in one paragraph how to beat the AI and tell users how to achieve 95% success rate. But there's no point, I'd rather focus on trying to stick to sound footballing concepts that work in real life as opposed to beating the ME.

It's not wasted, I already have my Uefa B license and how do you know I don't already coach a side? :brock:

very cool. do you coach an actual side? thats impressive.

Also can you do one of your threads on the principles of Catenaccio?

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  • 4 months later...

I have been using the system in Cleon's original post to great affect, on FM2011. It has worked well using the right players for a host of teams from different leagues at different levels. 

 

I was was wondering if anyone thinks such a system could work with an AMC behind a single striker or even two strikers up front?

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12 minutes ago, Southern Buddie said:

I have been using the system in Cleon's original post to great affect, on FM2011. It has worked well using the right players for a host of teams from different leagues at different levels. 

 

I was was wondering if anyone thinks such a system could work with an AMC behind a single striker or even two strikers up front?

Two strikers or one + an AMC is fine for a counter attacking system - so long as you set it up right of course :).

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10 hours ago, Southern Buddie said:

For instance, I was thinking of moving the b2b midfielder up as an AM(s) and the anchor man up into the midfield as a CM(d). This will make me slightly higher with less protection in front of the defence. Is it best I keep a DM or even two?

It all depends what you are wanting from the players and the reason why you'd favour a CM over a DM. It's all about what you want. There is no best.  Why not just play around and see what the pros/cons are of both ways? It will take you minutes to see the actual differences in game and how it changes based on the positional change.

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14 hours ago, Southern Buddie said:

For instance, I was thinking of moving the b2b midfielder up as an AM(s) and the anchor man up into the midfield as a CM(d). This will make me slightly higher with less protection in front of the defence. Is it best I keep a DM or even two?

You're moving a defensive minded player from DM and adding an attacker into AM. It's more attacking from just looking at it. You can play counter attacking football but with less defensive bodies back there, but it may be less effective defensively, but you've another outlet for the attack, so your counters may be more potent. It's all a balancing act, and as Cleon says above you need to experiment and see what works in what situation.

Personally, I prefer to have a DM in there when I'm looking to counter attack. I play in England a lot and the 4-2-3-1 wide appears a lot, so it doesn't make sense when I'm looking to nullify my opposition to not play a DM. But doing this makes my striker a lot harder to manage, because he can either drop deep to start the counter (and allow runners to burst past) at the risk of the opposition keeping me penned in to my own half, or he can push their high D Line but this can result in a lot of aimless "hoofs" forward. That's football management for you. You have to experiment and look at the game situation.

Edited by JDeeguain
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  • 2 months later...

Playing FM17.

In an earlier reply in this thread, it was established that counter attacks are triggered 'under the hood' automatically. Does this only happen with the Counter mentality? Or can counter attacks also be triggered in the other team mentality settings?

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4 minutes ago, peter_b said:

Or can counter attacks also be triggered in the other team mentality settings?

Yes, the trigger - I think - is how many AI players remain in defence, not your mentality setting. But if you choose Control or Attacking, there's probably a greater chance of some of your players staying high, keeping defenders with them and reducing the chance of the counter. 

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1 hour ago, peter_b said:

Playing FM17.

In an earlier reply in this thread, it was established that counter attacks are triggered 'under the hood' automatically. Does this only happen with the Counter mentality? Or can counter attacks also be triggered in the other team mentality settings?

 

59 minutes ago, warlock said:

Yes, the trigger - I think - is how many AI players remain in defence, not your mentality setting. But if you choose Control or Attacking, there's probably a greater chance of some of your players staying high, keeping defenders with them and reducing the chance of the counter. 

Counter attacks can trigger with any Mentality setting, however the requirement for the trigger is slightly relaxed when using the Defensive, Counter or Overload mentalities.

Formation will also play an important part.  Again, counter attacks can happen with any formation but may be more likely to when using a deep formation such as the 4141 rather than a top heavy formation such as the 4231.

So for example, use the Attacking mentality + the 4231 formation and don't expect to see many counter attacks.  But use the Defensive mentality + the 4141 formation and expect to see more counter attacks.  That's the basic principle.

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On 11/06/2018 at 17:58, herne79 said:

 

Counter attacks can trigger with any Mentality setting, however the requirement for the trigger is slightly relaxed when using the Defensive, Counter or Overload mentalities.

Formation will also play an important part.  Again, counter attacks can happen with any formation but may be more likely to when using a deep formation such as the 4141 rather than a top heavy formation such as the 4231.

So for example, use the Attacking mentality + the 4231 formation and don't expect to see many counter attacks.  But use the Defensive mentality + the 4141 formation and expect to see more counter attacks.  That's the basic principle.

Oh, that's interesting. I've just restarted a lower league save and due to different initial squads, I've shifted from a defensive-heavy formation (4231 Deep) to a top-heavy 4123 with wingbacks and 3 strikers. My default mentality is 'counter'. Are you saying this is contradictory with the new formation? The idea is for seven of my players to lump the ball for 3 strikers to chase, overloading the central defenders.

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8 minutes ago, phnompenhandy said:

Oh, that's interesting. I've just restarted a lower league save and due to different initial squads, I've shifted from a defensive-heavy formation (4231 Deep) to a top-heavy 4123 with wingbacks and 3 strikers. My default mentality is 'counter'. Are you saying this is contradictory with the new formation? The idea is for seven of my players to lump the ball for 3 strikers to chase, overloading the central defenders.

No, there's no contradictions.

I was just talking about how it's possible to use a combination of Mentality and formation to help set up to play counter attacking football based on Cleon's original premis.  You're not trying to play counter attacking football, it sounds more like direct football to me.  Whether using the counter mentality is most suitable for that is a whole different ball game.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi guys!


what better for counter-attacking system: to use or not to use playmaker. counter-attack = fast transition. When my player got the ball and counter-attack triggered - my player should deliever ball forward as fast as it possible, but if he will search my playmaker - this is just waste of time, precious time... But playmaker can deliever ball forward with better quality, than for example regular fulback.

This is made me think what for counter-attacking football better to not use playmaker, especially in DM strata, but in AM or ST strata this should work better, because AM or ST with Trequarista role will find space faster, after opposition attack will be stopped, and it's easier for other players to find them, when counter-attack 'triggered'.

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7 minutes ago, narkishadow said:

Hi guys!


what better for counter-attacking system: to use or not to use playmaker. counter-attack = fast transition. When my player got the ball and counter-attack triggered - my player should deliever ball forward as fast as it possible, but if he will search my playmaker - this is just waste of time, precious time... But playmaker can deliever ball forward with better quality, than for example regular fulback.

This is made me think what for counter-attacking football better to not use playmaker, especially in DM strata, but in AM or ST strata this should work better, because AM or ST with Trequarista role will find space faster, after opposition attack will be stopped, and it's easier for other players to find them, when counter-attack 'triggered'.

There is no best way really, it depends what type of counter attacking you want to create. There are many variants and what I did in this thread was just one specific way of doing it and outlining the basics of what counter attacking is. 

In a system that has players deep based on the initial shape, so things like a 4141, 352 etc then having a playmaker high up the pitch is likely a bad thing depending. Because you'll see the ball played to him early, so immediately he won't have the support and might have to wait a few seconds for everyone to catch up. Which could see the move breakdown and all counter attacking momentum lost. 

But in some systems that might be what you are wanting, to get the ball to the attackers early and then rely on their individual skill.

In other systems a deeper playmaker could also be a good idea, as they could dictate and be more expressive with distributing the ball.

But like I said, it entirely depends what you create and focus on. Many different ways of counter attacking are possible. 

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6 hours ago, Cleon said:

There is no best way really, it depends what type of counter attacking you want to create. There are many variants and what I did in this thread was just one specific way of doing it and outlining the basics of what counter attacking is. 

In a system that has players deep based on the initial shape, so things like a 4141, 352 etc then having a playmaker high up the pitch is likely a bad thing depending. Because you'll see the ball played to him early, so immediately he won't have the support and might have to wait a few seconds for everyone to catch up. Which could see the move breakdown and all counter attacking momentum lost. 

But in some systems that might be what you are wanting, to get the ball to the attackers early and then rely on their individual skill.

In other systems a deeper playmaker could also be a good idea, as they could dictate and be more expressive with distributing the ball.

But like I said, it entirely depends what you create and focus on. Many different ways of counter attacking are possible. 

Indeed. I have success with counter in the past with a Treq. But a deeper playmaker can be ideal when there's not many opportunities to counter as they can nick a through ball and dictate the play from the back. Anything can work as you said :)

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@Cleon I have a few questions if you don't mind:

1- You used a bottom heavy formation and I understand that is very important to achieve that style of play and generate some ME triggered counter attacks and I'm trying to achieve that with a narrow 4-1-3-2. But if I use a higher defensive line, prevent GK dristribution and put my 2 strikers to close down more or use OI to close down more on GK's and defenders, I guess that does not make much sense if I'm using a bottom heavy formation and won't have many ME triggered counter attacks?

2 - Would you use that same principles you did if you were a top team?

Thanks.

Edited by mikcheck
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1 hour ago, mikcheck said:

@Cleon I have a few questions if you don't mind:

1- You used a bottom heavy formation and I understand that is very important to achieve that style of play and generate some ME triggered counter attacks and I'm trying to achieve that with a narrow 4-1-3-2. But if I use a higher defensive line, prevent GK dristribution and put my 2 strikers to close down more or use OI to close down more on GK's and defenders, I guess that does not make much sense if I'm using a bottom heavy formation and won't have many ME triggered counter attacks?

2 - Would you use that same principles you did if you were a top team?

Thanks.

1 - It depends what mentality you would be using. It can make sense. It just depends on the brand of counter attacking football you are creating, they are many different forms of counter attacking football. What I highlighted was just one way and focusing on the principles of what counter attacking is.

2 - The basic principles are the same regardless of how good/poor you are. 

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3 hours ago, mikcheck said:

@Cleon I have a few questions if you don't mind:

1- You used a bottom heavy formation and I understand that is very important to achieve that style of play and generate some ME triggered counter attacks and I'm trying to achieve that with a narrow 4-1-3-2. But if I use a higher defensive line, prevent GK dristribution and put my 2 strikers to close down more or use OI to close down more on GK's and defenders, I guess that does not make much sense if I'm using a bottom heavy formation and won't have many ME triggered counter attacks?

My thought on this is more regarding RL.  How often do you see one or two players pressing and they just get passed around as the rest of the team is staying in there positions and not pushing up and helping press?  This is what it sounds like would be happening if you told those two ST players to close down more (PI or OI).  It might occasionally cause opponents to rush a pass or cause a mistake but is it worth the forwards energy in your system?

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39 minutes ago, summatsupeer said:

How often do you see one or two players pressing and they just get passed around as the rest of the team is staying in there positions and not pushing up and helping press?  T

Quite... But not worth mentioning real life pressing in FM terms... Given the options in game. Nothing you set up can remotely mimic real life pressing. 

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3 hours ago, Cleon said:

1 - It depends what mentality you would be using. It can make sense. It just depends on the brand of counter attacking football you are creating, they are many different forms of counter attacking football. What I highlighted was just one way and focusing on the principles of what counter attacking is.

2 - The basic principles are the same regardless of how good/poor you are. 

Thanks Cleon

1 hour ago, summatsupeer said:

My thought on this is more regarding RL.  How often do you see one or two players pressing and they just get passed around as the rest of the team is staying in there positions and not pushing up and helping press?  This is what it sounds like would be happening if you told those two ST players to close down more (PI or OI).  It might occasionally cause opponents to rush a pass or cause a mistake but is it worth the forwards energy in your system?

Not sure but I think that if you use a higher line and tel your strikers to close down more and/or use OI to press the GK and defenders, team will stay close together and the other players will try to close passing lanes and the strikers and possibly the more attacking minded midfielder to do that heavy pressing. The goal here is to try to stop them from play it out quietly from the back. I like the idea of having fast strikers and hit teams on the break, but I don't like my team to defend too deep that gives the opponent too much time to think, and that can happen if I use counter mentality with a deep tactic like 4-1-3-2. At least that's how I see it, but I'm far from an expert here  :D

 

Edited by mikcheck
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1 hour ago, westy8chimp said:

Quite... But not worth mentioning real life pressing in FM terms... Given the options in game. Nothing you set up can remotely mimic real life pressing. 

True but I think you should still have a pressing strategy that fits together with your overall tactic.  A 4132 gives a lot of space up the field on the flanks and in between midfield+attack so even if pushing your line higher your forwards could get passed around and waste energy that could be better used to fit the Counter style.

18 minutes ago, mikcheck said:

Not sure but I think that if you use a higher line and tel your strikers to close down more and/or use OI to press the GK and defenders, team will stay close together and the other players will try to close passing lanes and the strikers and possibly the more attacking minded midfielder to do that heavy pressing. The goal here is to try to stop them from play it out quietly from the back. I like the idea of having fast strikers and hit teams on the break, but I don't like my team to defend too deep that gives the opponent too much time to think, and that can happen if I use counter mentality with a deep tactic like 4-1-3-2. At least that's how I see it, but I'm far from an expert here  :D

Your formation is how your team defends, your players try to recover back to those positions though some will have to delay opponents to allow others to recover, from there they will press as per instructed and there attributes decide.  Even if you were Very Fluid a 4132 would still give space on your flanks and between the midfield 3 and the forward 2.   Pushing higher or dropping lower will just change how much space you give behind or in front of your formation.   Push to high without enough pressure on the ball and you risk long balls over the top.  Drop too deep and have players out of position pressing and you risk being played through. 

All the parts need to fit together otherwise you end up with different groups of players rather than a team.  If you don't want to draw teams onto you because of the pressure you might come under and possession it can give opponents then you don't probably don't want a counter attacking style. Cleon hasn't written about all the different styles you can do and to me it sounds like you want more of a "transitional style", a high energy pressing with quick play that doesn't sit in defensive / attacking phases for long.  To do that i'm not sure a 4132 is the best formation for the job, i'd want more players covering the field and helping pressing rather than extra shielding cover such as a 451/441/442/352 or maybe even 442 diamond or 4312.

Lines and Diamonds might give you some ideas if you've not read it all (shape is the only thing out of date).  Would link direct the the posts but it doesn't seem to be working so find section 5 and 7 that should be particularly helpful for you.

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hello. Just started a new save with Sparta Rotterdam. They’re one of the bookies favorites to go down and rightly so, the team is terrible. My plan for the first season is to sit back and hit on the counter if possible. If not, try to nick a draw whenever possible. So for this strategy I also used a 4-1-4-1 just like you.

 

I do understand you chose support roles because you can keep the defensive shape easier, as a counter-example in the first friendly against West Ham (I’d say they’re similar quality as top teams in Eredivisie) I used a CM-A because I thought he would support the striker better, he did but it came with a price, he went forward early, the ball was recovered early by West Ham, a different player took over my CM-A’s defensive responsability until he recovered and our defence was stretched so they scored. I’m not saying we can’t get away with a CM-A but maybe against poorer sides, the likes of Ajax and PSV will definitely punish me.

 

I just need a confirmation, those roles and duties are supposed to keep a solid defensive shape but when we’re not counter-attacking, there must also be support between the players hence you said you used a Box to Box to support your striker, right? You could have gone with a DLP for example. And that's why you also said you would change the striker’s role, in case the support was not close enough? 

Edit: Add Team Shape in the mix, a Structured Team Shape would have created more isolation between your midfield line and striker, correct?

Edited by Armistice
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34 minutes ago, Armistice said:

Hello. Just started a new save with Sparta Rotterdam. They’re one of the bookies favorites to go down and rightly so, the team is terrible. My plan for the first season is to sit back and hit on the counter if possible. If not, try to nick a draw whenever possible. So for this strategy I also used a 4-1-4-1 just like you.

 

I do understand you chose support roles because you can keep the defensive shape easier, as a counter-example in the first friendly against West Ham (I’d say they’re similar quality as top teams in Eredivisie) I used a CM-A because I thought he would support the striker better, he did but it came with a price, he went forward early, the ball was recovered early by West Ham, a different player took over my CM-A’s defensive responsability until he recovered and our defence was stretched so they scored. I’m not saying we can’t get away with a CM-A but maybe against poorer sides, the likes of Ajax and PSV will definitely punish me.

 

I just need a confirmation, those roles and duties are supposed to keep a solid defensive shape but when we’re not counter-attacking, there must also be support between the players hence you said you used a Box to Box to support your striker, right? You could have gone with a DLP for example. And that's why you also said you would change the striker’s role, in case the support was not close enough? 

Edit: Add Team Shape in the mix, a Structured Team Shape would have created more isolation between your midfield line and striker, correct?

I set the roles up to play for when we aren't counter attacking because I was going for AI triggered counter attacks. I think most people don't realise this point and use roles that don't make much sense or don't do 'anything' other than focused on keeping the ball in your own half. You want the AI to have the ball and commit men forward. But you still need an outlet for when you aren't counter attacking. If not you just get stuck in your own half and can't break out.

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32 minutes ago, Cleon said:

I set the roles up to play for when we aren't counter attacking because I was going for AI triggered counter attacks. I think most people don't realise this point and use roles that don't make much sense or don't do 'anything' other than focused on keeping the ball in your own half. You want the AI to have the ball and commit men forward. But you still need an outlet for when you aren't counter attacking. If not you just get stuck in your own half and can't break out.

Okay so then my question is why didn't you choose a CM-A instead of Box to Box? It would support your striker and get forward a lot.

Edited by Armistice
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22 minutes ago, Armistice said:

Okay so then my question is why didn't you choose a CM-A instead of Box to Box? It would support your striker and get forward a lot.

Because he'd have been more cavalier than the rest of the players. A box to box midfielder will support the striker just as fine and gets forward a lot too. But he also helps out defensively much better than a CM attack. I didn't want one player who was more rogue than the others, I want them to work as a unit, this included moving up and down the pitch together. A CM attack complicates this as he's more focused on advancing than anything. If he's really advanced and the rest of the side are really deep, we'd struggle to get the ball to him consistently and regular unless we went for long/direct balls.

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