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Leverksuen - S13 - The Experi-mentalists - (i)


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Guessing game

Lost focus in my Leverkusen save once the new season started! Flirted with a QPR save then a Watford save...but neither team had a penny to spend (and i do like a big transfer window) so I've come back fairly swiftly to Die Werkself.

Before I post my first experimental season (slight clue in the name that the tactic is a little unorthodox) I thought I'd post a little analysis and see how much people could guess about the tactic.

The mentality is standard

Try and guess;

  • TI
  • Team Shape
  • Formation
  • Roles - 3 or 4 are guessable (#2 is the easiest!)

256481263_attackingshape2.thumb.PNG.71bf78c7b2588a6f579cbec76e3274c3.PNG

837586816_attackingshape.thumb.PNG.8fa17d28fed8dcf15786996c3d1d907b.PNG

277199638_dominantmatchstats.PNG.65061aaeabc8cb3859eaf059cdd38a9a.PNG

With the ball

1484086251_standard-withball.PNG.b6a39f8b9531b2c8676701bf1154e924.PNG

without the ball

269299348_standard-withoutball.PNG.ed77f98eb472e9332c40cab0bfd2e8f9.PNG

Completed crosses

801713692_completedcrosses.PNG.b00ede327d366575db5193bc02480f75.PNG

Key passes

1398523398_keypasses.PNG.4b46c81a67bc149e4e1398ab9d4a10ea.PNG

Goals

1833599089_goalsinbox.thumb.PNG.a13e746d0091534d55b86c62f1af674f.PNG

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I'd guess at 4141, IWBs - right-sided one on attack - wide players crossing quite a bit so probably wingers, No21 looks like a playmaker (RP or AP?) and the striker is not dropping very deep so maybe P or TM.  Higher or much higher line, and either attacking or overload with retain possession.

Looks interesting.

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4 hours ago, warlock said:

I'd guess at 4141

of a kind, we certainly defend as a 4141

RBL had kick off and go back, so this is as good a 2d indication I can provide of our starting defensive position.

1685417417_defensiveshape2d.thumb.PNG.471b35616ba07f3bc3fb129e90af5d8f.PNG

Possession without ball vs Bremen

408944163_positionwithoutball2.thumb.PNG.ba91f927e4c9ee03da5f1331ba050bd1.PNG

But the answer needs expanding by you or another participant!

4 hours ago, warlock said:

IWBs - right-sided one on attack

the thought process is correct, but I can confirm there is no iwb-a in the tactic

despite this kind of aggressive behaviour from my #2...

523601553_iwbassist.PNG.5f9b0a88702b41a495b5867d23f8b5a7.PNG

Possession with ball vs Bremen - #2 definitely more aggressively positioned than #3... either different role/duty or different strata

1239609157_positionwithball2.thumb.PNG.95f30a20fb5ab518adbe0284f077000d.PNG

4 hours ago, warlock said:

wide players crossing quite a bit so probably wingers

correct 2 x wingers. (#8 on the left #14 on the right) what duty and what strata though?? They like to set each other up a bit like Sane and Sterling last season.

1628965224_goalsinbox.PNG.5a6b2c30d42360e83feee98586b5c25c.PNG

1925701046_goalmap2.PNG.41fb8af806895709c0893651711557d4.PNG

260138664_goalmap1.PNG.444e111579a0999116bb902317be114b.PNG

4 hours ago, warlock said:

No21 looks like a playmaker (RP or AP?)

No, but I can see the logic.

4 hours ago, warlock said:

striker is not dropping very deep so maybe P or TM. 

spot on in assessment, but can confirm you narrowly missed the role!

4 hours ago, warlock said:

Higher or much higher line

yes, one of the more obvious :) 

4 hours ago, warlock said:

attacking or overload with retain possession.

...well yes, the 60%+ wasn't a one off, nor was the high number of shots. So again the assessment is very logical, other than that in the OP I told you I was playing standard :brock:

We are not using the TI 'retain possession' so we must be keeping possession by other means *hint... it's not a passing instruction (think duties & other TI)

396614370_dominantmatchstats-2.PNG.c8611dc8b5f4f26cce343781070713ea.PNG

982234726_dominantmatchstats-3.thumb.PNG.247c562441bd8c5aa201cab2508d534f.PNG

A rather big hint to the role my CB #23 might have...

BPD assist.PNG

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I'm pretty useless at guessing these things.

At a guess you've got two CBs one is a Either a DCB or a BPD I'd lean toward the latter with the possession numbers.

 

Two IWBs on support in the WB strata, two Wingers on Attack in the Midfield Strata with three central midfielders possibly two Mezzals (But I'd also guess one CMS and one CMA either side of a CMD and a striker up top.

Something like a 2-2-5-1 dribble less and roam from position TIs both on to increase possession numbers. 

 

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Going to try guess the whole thing, I'm guessing from the title you're doing something weird that looks relatively "normal" when it plays out. So I'm either going to be dead-on or completely off-base.

I'm guessing for TIs if you're not using Retain Possession then 2/3 of Shorter Passing, Play Out Of Defence and Work Ball Into Box. Much Higher Line you already confirmed. On Standard with those possession stats I'm also guessing Close Down More to win it back earlier. Very Fluid shape to keep the unorthodox formation (below) I believe you're in closer together. 

GK: straightforward GK-De as I've seen you complain about Sweeper Keepers not sweeping at all.

RCB: That long ball from #23 suggests either DCB or BPD, I'm going to go with DCB>

LCB: Probably just a normal CD to work alongside the specialist, I have no real grounds for this assertion, just a wild guess.

LWB: IWB-Su to explain the narrow positioning in possession.

RM: IW-At (or possibly WP?) #2 comes inside a lot because these roles arguably cut inside too early, just like IF. He drops into the defensive line as RM / LM do that to an extent when there are no wide defenders behind them.

CM: CM-De (#20) looks like a DM behind a flat four midfield, but is actually in CM strata. Nothing shown says it has to be a playmaker, and a BWM would charge out of position faster.

RW: W-At 

RAM: T-At #21 is a playmaker, just not one of the ones with "playmaker" in his name - At duty explains slightly higher positioning than #18

LAM: AM-Su

LW: W-At in case I'm not being clear, I believe they're in the AM strata.

ST: AF - other than P or TM-At no other role stays as far forward.

Also if I'm wrong I'm definitely testing this out on an old save with a good squad.

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@khodder @zlatanera

Nice educated guesses

Guesses is the wrong term... Because its not a guess its well thought out... But ill stick with it for want of a better term. 

Between you you have ticked off a couple of the correct roles and strata. 

LAM is indeed am-s

DRC is a bpd

RWB is an iwb-s 

Everything else is warm... 

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Well then I have to believe that the Wingers are W-Su in the AM strata. 

LCB also a BPD then? I've ignored that gaping hole between the centre backs, so perhaps #20 is a Half Back? I know you get that stupid wide split in possession with the Half Back as I've seen many a striker sleepwalk through that gaping chasm to score against me.

#21 I would therefore go is a CM-At to explain him being deeper out of possession but higher in possession than the LAM. 

LWB would be IWB-De - a duty I forgot existed until just now. 

Instead of educated guesses, try "Deductions"? I might be misusing that, but I'm just thinking of describing all the posters here as Poirot (tv not Kenneth Branagh) applying our own logic in the hopes of forcing a confession from the duchess / countess / butler (@westy8chimp)

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10 minutes ago, zlatanera said:

Well then I have to believe that the Wingers are W-Su in the AM strata. 

LCB also a BPD then? I've ignored that gaping hole between the centre backs, so perhaps #20 is a Half Back? I know you get that stupid wide split in possession with the Half Back as I've seen many a striker sleepwalk through that gaping chasm to score against me.

#21 I would therefore go is a CM-At to explain him being deeper out of possession but higher in possession than the LAM. 

LWB would be IWB-De - a duty I forgot existed until just now. 

Instead of educated guesses, try "Deductions"? I might be misusing that, but I'm just thinking of describing all the posters here as Poirot (tv not Kenneth Branagh) applying our own logic in the hopes of forcing a confession from the duchess / countess / butler @westy8chimp

Half-back was going to be my next guess. But I also wonder if the CBs split like that when they are the only two players on a line?? He also seems too high in possession to be a half-back so possibly a DLP or maybe @westy8chimp using that ole Regista again.

I'm happy to pile on the CMA train or maybe a Mezzala on support, given the emphasis on support roles. I'd probably also go Cf (S) for his man up top.

Gk (D)

BPD (D) Cd (D)

Iwb (s) iwb(D)

Mez (s) DLP (D)

W(S) Am (s) W (s)

Cf (S)

Attacking football on a very high mentality without an attacking duty.

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7 minutes ago, khodder said:

Half-back was going to be my next guess. But I also wonder if the CBs split like that when they are the only two players on a line?? He also seems too high in possession to be a half-back so possibly a DLP or maybe @westy8chimp using that ole Regista again.

I'm happy to pile on the CMA train or maybe a Mezzala on support, given the emphasis on support roles. I'd probably also go Cf (S) for his man up top.

Gk (D)

BPD (D) Cd (D)

Iwb (s) iwb(D)

Mez (s) DLP (D)

W(S) Am (s) W (s)

Cf (S)

Attacking football on a very high mentality without an attacking duty.

I'd already guessed CD(D) for LCB and he didn't confirm it, other than that yeah I could see you being right about the two midfielders and the striker. I was kinda fixated on the idea of it being an Attack duty but also would be completely flat out guessing, and rather see someone's justification for their choice (as you have done) than be right by accident.

Also he said in the OP its Standard mentality. 

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3 hours ago, westy8chimp said:

in the OP I told you I was playing standard :brock:

Doh!

Great thread! And I too, need to go to bed because my concentration is so low I can't follow all the ins and outs of everyone else's guesses (a very nice bottle of red wine may be contributing to that!) But I'm looking forward to the big reveal, even though I always play incredibly conservative tactics in FM and this looks very experimental, if not just mental :idiot:)

Edit to add: The standard mentality makes it even more curious - one of the few things I was certain about in my early post was that mentality had to be pretty aggressive.

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Hmm. Let's go with this.

random.thumb.png.cabbaa980e4c646884b8215752e44b48.png

You confirmed that the RCB, the RWB and the LAM are all the correct positions. 

I have no evidence from the keeper, so lets go default here. I'd say the IWB(D) on the left makes sense since the behaviour is similar as on the right, but more defensive. He could also be further in the defensive strata and have support, I guess. I do not use these roles very often so I am not familiar with them. 

There is a picture with number 20 quite advanced and involved in a goal. I have to think you have a DMC here, because it would be clearly insane to play without one. So I would guess at a regista, since it would make sense to have a playmaker behind all those attacking players further forward. 

The wingers are already confirmed, and I think everyone is in the AMC strata here anyway. The same for the LAM. The RAM, well, you said not a playmaker, which leaves me to suspect a treq. I am basing this entirely on the fact that his position barely seems to change between offensive and defensive setups. We will get this one by a process of elmination soon =P.

An AF(A) up front, since he always seems to be quite far forward. Could be a complete forward, but it is hard to tell from the pictures.

You should stick a video or two up, so we can observe the player movement too. It is hard to get a proper idea of a tactic from static images (although a nice challenge).

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9 minutes ago, sporadicsmiles said:

You should stick a video or two up

Would have loved to! Unfortunately i raised a bug a couple of months ago about my incapability to upload vids and the diagnosis was my laptop. Hoping to get a new one for FM19! 

With the team we are pretty much there. 

I was going to try and find some analysis of the goalie but as theres only two options and it isnt GK... 

I will post the tactic tonight, but given the analysis provided, the answers have all been really good. 

Tbh i was hoping for a few silly answers so i could explain how to indentify the w-s roles etc! This place has become too informed and sensible

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1 hour ago, westy8chimp said:

Would have loved to! Unfortunately i raised a bug a couple of months ago about my incapability to upload vids and the diagnosis was my laptop. Hoping to get a new one for FM19! 

With the team we are pretty much there. 

I was going to try and find some analysis of the goalie but as theres only two options and it isnt GK... 

I will post the tactic tonight, but given the analysis provided, the answers have all been really good. 

Tbh i was hoping for a few silly answers so i could explain how to indentify the w-s roles etc! This place has become too informed and sensible

Interestingly I think I have exactly the same issue. It is a pain in the backside when you are trying to post analysis of tactics and want to include movement, and have something more dynamic. 

Since we are all becoming too good at this kind of thing, FM needs to radically overhaul its tactical engine so we are all scrambling in the dark again!

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7 hours ago, westy8chimp said:

Would have loved to! Unfortunately i raised a bug a couple of months ago about my incapability to upload vids and the diagnosis was my laptop. Hoping to get a new one for FM19! 

With the team we are pretty much there. 

I was going to try and find some analysis of the goalie but as theres only two options and it isnt GK... 

I will post the tactic tonight, but given the analysis provided, the answers have all been really good. 

Tbh i was hoping for a few silly answers so i could explain how to indentify the w-s roles etc! This place has become too informed and sensible

You could still do a full breakdown - I would have been completely hopeless a few months ago, I'm sure there's plenty of people who looked at the OP and just went "??????"

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The Tactic - 'Defending From the Front'

tactic.thumb.PNG.2f8b1c7d535d5daca889859dcd3ad0a9.PNG

 

  • Fluid - new very basic rule of thumb, if the tactic screen shows red squares, then you have dangerously big gaps, fluid style (with right mentality) can help plug the gaps.
  • Much higher d-line - like fluid, this will push my defence up lessening that red zone issue. I also want the high d-line to work with the pressing and overall 'defend from the front' theme
  • Much more closing down - high block is employed, I want to consistently force the opposition into mistakes or early long passes into my high d-line.
  • PSGD - works with previous 2 and as I've mentioned in other threads, seems to contribute a few easy goals each season
  • SK-A - I've spoken of my distaste for the role, but with such a top heavy attack I'm happy enough to use the SK for it's direct distribution (and would love it even more if it meant the keeper actually acted like a sweeper, as that would be ideal to help cover my defensive weakness)
  • BPD - another role I'm not a huge fan of for the same reason as SK (when they were introduced to FM I thought it was to mirror recent trends of teams playing out from the back and necessitating more ball proficiency from the CBs... I didn't expect it to be a more refined DCB!) but using it for the same reason as the SK in terms of the direct passing style when the opportunity presents itself.
  • HB - I learnt to love this role in my season 8 possession tactic. The HB drops deep to collect it early, allows the CBs to split meaning you can do without full backs in terms of transitioning into attack, as the move progresses the HB is just as capable/willing of providing a safe backpass option as a DLP is.
  • IWB - this role with wingers ahead was intended to help cover the red zone. The use of one on defend and one on support is nothing to do with the dreaded 'balance' I moan so much about... simply to stop the attack getting too congested as I already have 4 support duty in the AM strata and the IWB-s adds to that overload. IWB-d, like the HB, offers another safe backpass option
  • Wingers & AM on support - covers the whole strata in terms of closing down the opposition midfield quickly (whether they try and use a DM or a flat 4, or a central 3, we are never outnumbered). It also provides the variation of attacking passes needed, Although I'm tempted to encourage the AMs to try more risky passes... their reluctance is what results in too many long shots. All on support helps keep possession and willingness to defend (from the front)
  • CF-a - with all those support duties behind, I need a striker that wants to push the defence back, CF on attack runs channels, can come deep, can play off the shoulder etc. Basically a constant threat to the opposition.

 

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Very interesting. Looks quite good. I have the players to pull something similar off with my current Stoke save, though I have been trying to do that with a more traditional formation.

You've almost created a very, very new school WM formation here which is incredibly intriguing.

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4 hours ago, westy8chimp said:

The Tactic - 'Defending From the Front'

tactic.thumb.PNG.2f8b1c7d535d5daca889859dcd3ad0a9.PNG

 

  • Fluid - new very basic rule of thumb, if the tactic screen shows red squares, then you have dangerously big gaps, fluid style (with right mentality) can help plug the gaps.
  • Much higher d-line - like fluid, this will push my defence up lessening that red zone issue. I also want the high d-line to work with the pressing and overall 'defend from the front' theme
  • Much more closing down - high block is employed, I want to consistently force the opposition into mistakes or early long passes into my high d-line.
  • PSGD - works with previous 2 and as I've mentioned in other threads, seems to contribute a few easy goals each season
  • SK-A - I've spoken of my distaste for the role, but with such a top heavy attack I'm happy enough to use the SK for it's direct distribution (and would love it even more if it meant the keeper actually acted like a sweeper, as that would be ideal to help cover my defensive weakness)
  • BPD - another role I'm not a huge fan of for the same reason as SK (when they were introduced to FM I thought it was to mirror recent trends of teams playing out from the back and necessitating more ball proficiency from the CBs... I didn't expect it to be a more refined DCB!) but using it for the same reason as the SK in terms of the direct passing style when the opportunity presents itself.
  • HB - I learnt to love this role in my season 8 possession tactic. The HB drops deep to collect it early, allows the CBs to split meaning you can do without full backs in terms of transitioning into attack, as the move progresses the HB is just as capable/willing of providing a safe backpass option as a DLP is.
  • IWB - this role with wingers ahead was intended to help cover the red zone. The use of one on defend and one on support is nothing to do with the dreaded 'balance' I moan so much about... simply to stop the attack getting too congested as I already have 4 support duty in the AM strata and the IWB-s adds to that overload. IWB-d, like the HB, offers another safe backpass option
  • Wingers & AM on support - covers the whole strata in terms of closing down the opposition midfield quickly (whether they try and use a DM or a flat 4, or a central 3, we are never outnumbered). It also provides the variation of attacking passes needed, Although I'm tempted to encourage the AMs to try more risky passes... their reluctance is what results in too many long shots. All on support helps keep possession and willingness to defend (from the front)
  • CF-a - with all those support duties behind, I need a striker that wants to push the defence back, CF on attack runs channels, can come deep, can play off the shoulder etc. Basically a constant threat to the opposition.

 

What PIs if any do you use? Gonna give this a go with Man City seems pretty accurate to how they played last year

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3 hours ago, Abdiel_rivera10 said:

What PIs if any do you use? Gonna give this a go with Man City seems pretty accurate to how they played last year

 

3 hours ago, khodder said:

He mentioned earlier on the thread there were no PIs

Yep none yet. 

Id say the amcs are the ones to look at... But if you are City then i think you wont need any... De bruyne, d silva, b silva should all be willing to play through balls anyway with their attributes and i suspect they have ppms to try through or killer balls

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Cool, Westy. How do you find the build up play? Is it very direct or relatively patient?  I suspect front 5 gets in between the lines a lot more than players in the midfield strata would but will drop off due to shape, mentality and duty chosen. :)

and the mentality ensures the patience City plays with, without having to use Retain possesion or something like that. It looks very cool man, because standard gives you the right setup for possesion football - if that is what you are looking for - and the formation paired with close down much more and the high line gives you the high pressing block. :D

Awesome stuff man.

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9 minutes ago, Gegenklaus said:

Cool, Westy. How do you find the build up play? Is it very direct or relatively patient?  I suspect front 5 gets in between the lines a lot more than players in the midfield strata would but will drop off due to shape, mentality and duty chosen. :)

and the mentality ensures the patience City plays with, without having to use Retain possesion or something like that. It looks very cool man, because standard gives you the right setup for possesion football - if that is what you are looking for - and the formation paired with close down much more and the high line gives you the high pressing block. :D

Awesome stuff man.

pretty much spot on.

when I thought of the theme, going experimental... the original concept was going to be a very top heavy formation but using contain or defensive... the trouble is, it's counter intuitive. On contain, the highest pressing settings and d-line settings don't actually allow you to be that defensive with a top heavy formation, so going standard or even attacking make you more solid!

standard is always the best mentality I think, gives you complete control over the TI and it also allows the duties and roles to play the most significant part. If nothing else, it makes decision making clearer (for me anyway)

In terms of build up ... it's not as extreme as id thought it would be, which is good... the fluidity, mentality and roles do make it quite an orthodox 4141. When we win the ball it's very much like a naturally occurring counter attack, as the top 5 all burst forward due to their position/role

Support duties as ive mentioned before bring the whole thing together, there is usually an available player for a safe pass or risky pass.

I only got to play one game last night, I played in Comprehensive mode because I was going to use the analysis for every transition/player in response to @zlatanera about explaining the 'tell-tale-signs' and traits of the roles I'd chosen.

Even in comprehensive it was really tough... never showed a highlight of my SK on the ball.... never showed the opponents playing out from the back so I could illustrate the high press. At some point i'll have to go full match!

I'll show some analysis from the Dortmund game though...

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Dortmund game

*Disclaimer ... I watched this game in comprehensive hoping to capture all aspects of transition... in the end it was a really boring game, and also that highlights mode still seemed to constantly begin highlights from a set piece or a counter already underway etc. so will try and find time to watch a game in full match... or just a portion of a match.

Dortmund lined up in a 4231 DM structured manner... I don't pay a great deal of thought to what the opponents do, but I make a mental note in case I spot a trend that I struggle against a certain style.

1385009427_Dortmundscoutreport.thumb.PNG.4476244229d9b9d4657f68688afc5b3b.PNG

If I was going down the route of spotting potential issues ... the poacher should be a threat, the HB creating splits in my defence ought to be ideal for a poacher to capitilise on (much more so than say a DLF or F9)

IFs also an issue, as I'm quite open at the back they will create a central 4 in attack which can overload my 2CBs and HB

Plenty of space in the middle just like me, isn't a good thing... my tactic is purposefully leaving that space for opponent players in the hope we can overload them higher up the pitch. With double pivot and a flat back 4 it's actually going to be a 6vs5 in their favour or 6vs6 when my IWB-S gets up the pitch.

*now I'm thinking about it... this is probably why it was a dull game...next time i'll do my analysis when the opponent is a simple 442 or something!

I had a couple of changes to lineup due to injury - Lopez not as inclined as Almeida (who is a natural playmaker hence some misleading positional play in the OP) to drop deep and collect the ball, he is a winger by trade. Hernandez in for Monaco... he is the better striker, but less equipped to feed off of crosses which proved slightly costly.

1997749526_dortmund-mylineup.thumb.PNG.178746feb45a1bf998df8affc1010da8.PNG

If we start from the back, here is classic HB position. The CBs have split, the IWBs have become CMs, my attacking 5 are in their positions - stretching play, though as you can see both AMC are marked, which isn't normally possible for the opponent. Wingers are in space but the opponent have their full backs in good position. Because of the split and the CBs being our first outlets... I chose BPD role...they have plenty of space and time to work with, so why not encourage them to pick a dangerous pass? (only issue is I didn't pick the personnel, so just relying on quantity rather than quality)

82544527_dortmund-playoutfromback.thumb.PNG.bd4dbff7d2c3b76d5dc87b91d515b9a1.PNG

This is a typical transition down the wing. The two CBs are still dangerously split whilst we have possession - I highlighted this during my possession tactic in season 8 - if there is a turnover and the opponent are willing to play a direct counter... it's damaging, if they aren't ... it isn't! The HB and IWB quickly drop back to an orthodox back 4-1 setup.

Left winger is a bit isolated - I'd expect to see the AMC closer in support. The difference on this side of the pitch is the IWB-d isn't supporting the LW when we advance higher up the pitch. I've chosen an elite player however, who beats his man often enough. Also with support duty, he can be inclined to put the cross in early, so being isolated is less of an issue.

the important thing is when the ball is delivered we often have 3 or 4 players attacking the box, with players in good positions for the 'second ball' (usually HB or an IWB is 10 yards outside the box

This cross came to nothing because the transition was poor...not enough players got in the box (but as you can see from the match stats and cross maps in the OP ... it's not a tactic built for a few very concise chances, its try-try-try again)

2113035962_dortmund-playdownleftwing.thumb.PNG.8bbf8c13f321e7f66d353d82a3a1b078.PNG

The IWB-s is proving to be very useful at creating overloads. Same look at the back, CBs split apart, IWB-d and HB holding position to mop up second phases...

but the key here is the IWB-s getting so far forward with the ball we finally free up the spare man in AMC unmarked as circled.

940036813_dortmundiwbattacking.thumb.PNG.33e1e8fd6e87878d05ad7938b7ba507f.PNG

When Lopera feeds him he also carries on his run in the box. We now have several players getting goalside of the defenders. These situations are deadly, and I'd have loved a goal here to show how it works! Alas, Lopez took the long shot!!! This is where I may consider PI on the AMC to shoot less and look for more risky passes. We are having too many long shots.

The only reason I haven't made a change is because things are going pretty well... I think 16 or so games in we have just lost one. I'll probably make the change in the winter break so I can compare first half of the season with second half.

50770067_dortmundoverloadinbox.thumb.PNG.a7725e403e4532e88df6b971303741f3.PNG

Dortmund did eventually get the ball - they have played a long ball (didn't catch the start of the move, the highlight basically started here which wasn't very useful), my #23 Rico wins the header but it drops to Dortmund #15 Kalonji (a product of my academy). When he receives it, it looks quite good for him, he has a little time and a free man to pass to.

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But one second later, he plays the pass to #14 and he is swamped. Its slightly unclear, probably not made easier by my squiggles, but the HB #20 and my LAMC Lopez have tackled him, releasing Lopera who was the third man in the press. We win the ball and release to Allwein. Dortmunds tactic, especially as structured, however, means our usual counters just weren't typically available so it was a game of press and counter press, I think they probably won it straight back off Allwein.

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there was one good counter as we won the ball a little higher up and they were a bit more committed (I cant remember the timing of the screen shots, but I suspect they were a goal or two down by this point and may have tweaked). #14 was pressed first, he passed back to #4 who has the ball and is being hounded by two of my players. #17 Hernandez has blocked the passing lane for his safe backpass, #14 is closing down the winger, #19 is closing down the other CM.... the ball carrier is like a rabbit in the headlights of a truck

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We win the ball and have men pouring forward. It didn't come to anything, but it's a good indication of the kind of turnover we create. It's much more significant vs teams playing fluid or without a double pivot - can happen 10 times a game or more, which is why we are scoring 3+ goals with high frequency.

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It was a particularly poor display from my team, with just 6/21 chances on target. Fewer chances created than any other game this season too. We still won 3-0 however, and still dominated the ball.

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As I mentioned, didn't actually see any highlights of my SK... so I checked his pass map... how are we getting 60%+ possession with this kind of rubbish I don't know! probably same if I'd checked the BPDs, but it was working - when we win the first ball great, when we don't, it's often better as we are very dangerous when we pick up the second ball (hopefully I can find some highlights in the next few days to show this).

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Something I don't often look at, because I just get a general feel, is where we win the ball. We force a lot of mistakes and interceptions, in this game anyway, around the halfway line. I would imagine it would be higher up the pitch with a more aggressive mentality, or playing on structured, but there would be less players in the press, so would be less mistakes by the opposition.

this shows our interceptions and their mistakes (not all ints and mist. by both teams).

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Cool analysis, man. May I come with a suggestion? Dont use the HB-role. Use instead the DLP-D. He will drop in between the CB’s - they will still split wide due to IWB’s moving in - but they wont split that wide when using a Halfback and they wont stay wide that long. They will come narrow sooner and you wont have the issue you are showing the picture. The center will be much more protected if there is a turn over - and I rather protect the center than the flanks. :)

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10 minutes ago, Gegenklaus said:

Cool analysis, man. May I come with a suggestion? Dont use the HB-role. Use instead the DLP-D. He will drop in between the CB’s - they will still split wide due to IWB’s moving in - but they wont split that wide when using a Halfback and they wont stay wide that long. They will come narrow sooner and you wont have the issue you are showing the picture. The center will be much more protected if there is a turn over - and I rather protect the center than the flanks. :)

definitely better for the defensive side, might play havoc with my attack though if he attracts the ball, I could be caught out a lot by any team playing high press.

It's a good suggestion, at the moment I think the only games I've conceded more than 1 in were the super cup 1st competitive game of the season (I was on contain for that one and it was a mess so I swiftly changed) lost 2-1 I think. And a 2-2 draw away to At. Mad in the CL group, but that was with significantly weaker team sheet as I don't play any first team players in Europe until the Final (unless I need them to rescue me in a knockout second leg).

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24 minutes ago, westy8chimp said:

definitely better for the defensive side, might play havoc with my attack though if he attracts the ball, I could be caught out a lot by any team playing high press.

It's a good suggestion, at the moment I think the only games I've conceded more than 1 in were the super cup 1st competitive game of the season (I was on contain for that one and it was a mess so I swiftly changed) lost 2-1 I think. And a 2-2 draw away to At. Mad in the CL group, but that was with significantly weaker team sheet as I don't play any first team players in Europe until the Final (unless I need them to rescue me in a knockout second leg).

A DM(D) might just do it - but if there isnt a problem - which there isnt - the dont fix it. :D

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Midseason

It's not the best season I've had by a long way, but there's plenty of positives to work on. More so given that I started the season toying with a contain setup which didn't work - that cost me the super cup and a couple of early league games.

things have gotten better as the season has gone on.

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I held off making changes, but this was the final three games of the first half of the season, and as the theme is pretty consistent...

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I'm going to make changes that I mentioned in earlier posts

Both AMC set to shoot less and look for risky pass. TI 'work ball into box' added.

I expect fewer shots but more goals

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Here's the squad by goals and assists (Havertz playing AMC already gets more assists than any of the others because of his PPM 'looks for pass rather than attempting to shoot' - so I will now be looking for the others to follow his lead).

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I was so intrigued by this that I've created a slightly modified version for my u18s to use to see where we get to this season.

Only change was pushing one AM up into a Striker role to create a true WM formation I haven't been watching matches or consistently following the results, but I've seen some big scorelines against teams I shouldn't have a chance against.

When I do watch among the most entertaining aspects of this is the pressing from the front leading to goals from mistakes or long balls to my CBs to mop up and re-start the attacking phase.

It's definitely a concept I'll be playing around with.

 

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Work ball into box

Had a tough 2-2 away game with PSG in CL after about 30 straight wins in all comps.

The game showed some nice work ball into box for me, but also that huge hole in my defence when we play an attacking team willing to counter attack directly

Ball played into CF (Monaco) he's strong enough to hold the ball up vs 2 defenders and create space for the on rushing AMCs

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He feeds in Almeida who may previously have had a first time shot, but now with all those runners getting goal side he has better options than an early shot

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So he plays the extra pass to Alena who has a much easier tap in

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This time the man in space for attacking pass is Kayombo

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He receives from the HB Pinto and like Monaco in goal 1, holds the ball up drawing out defenders, leaving us an overload in the middle

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He chips through and we have 4 players making goal side runs of the defenders

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Monaco wins the flick and again we have an open goal (here's where the animation and my timing of screen shot were both fails!) Allwein bashed it in

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And then the ugly side of the tactic. This highlight was a long one because the ball pinballed as both teams played an attacking high press. Eventually though we lost the ball in attacking transition, with my HB pushed up and CBS split... Paris, unlike so many inferior teams in the league, use one ball down the flank, two touches from Giovanni and their key man Madeira is clean through on goal to finish.

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This is the risk vs reward of this tactic. But we still drew 2-2 away to PSG (probably the best AI team along with Man City at this stage in the save)

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Champions League Final

After a couple of baron years we are back in the big time, carrying our Europa title over our shoulder, like a UFC fighter carries his 'interim title belt'...shamefaced

The Scout Report:

As usual I'm not actually going to tweak my tactic, but for the big game I like to at least be aware of what risks I face and what areas I can exploit. It's the one game a season where I am prepared to tweak in game if I deem it necessary, so I need to have some ideas (as well as base it on what I see in game, but I play in extended highlights, not full game).

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The dangers - I know my biggest weakness is the defensive split, playing without fullbacks and the use of a HB my CBs leave a big hole in the middle, so already I'm pretty terrified that City will be leaving a poacher upfront (structured too so he won't do much other than sit up top ready to exploit that gap) and they also have a CF so between the two of them I expect issues. The midfield is less of a concern, and the fact their FBs seem to be on defend should give my wingers plenty of space to work in during the build ups (it could make it hard for that final pass or shot as I work the ball into the box).

The counter mentality is hit and miss... it means they probably won't press my AMCs enough, especially with no DM, so I will have more of the ball, but they will presumably have a deeper line, congesting the box as we attempt the final pass or shot.

For me, definitely plenty of space for my midfield to work in. The HB is also unopposed by an AMC so will have time on the ball to trigger my attacks.

Kean and Luchetta are a great partnership and present a huge threat... not helped by the fact 2 of my 4 CBs are unavailable for the game!

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I'm also missing Monaco, who with the abundance of crosses completed in this tactic, is having probably his best season yet

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The lineups:

No surprises, the scouts got it spot on.

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Game kicks off:

I've shown it in other matches, but here again, as we start play is that huge hole I need to be wary of Kean/Luchetta exploiting

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Major event 1:

A lovely build up after half an hour of to and fro - where we had the ball but they looked dangerous on the break...

We start with my IWB-s in advanced positon, he has the short option of HB in space, 2 amcs available for forward pass to feet, my wingers and CF are occupying the defence with forward runs

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Lopera chooses the pass to AMC Allwein. and continues his run forward, indicative of the overloads we create. At the moment Citys deep cautious line actually looks pretty good. Apart from my LW potentially getting goal side they are solid

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Allwein shows patience and maturity by going back to the open HB, Pinto and a similar picture is presented. This time Lopera is free the others are all having their battles to get goal side of the defence, while the AMs jostle to make themselves available for a pass

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As the ball moves wide to Lopera, the constant movement begins to pay off, City move to press giving a bit more space to the two AMCs

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It's Almeida who becomes available and now we are goal side of the press

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He finds CF, Hernandez with back to goal and now it's game set and match, he has options available, but the threat is my two wingers making the move outside the defenders

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through ball is played to LW, Spyropolous - the usual outcome here is a slide ball across goal, where 14 and 2 (AMR, IWB respectively) are going to be tapping it in at the back post.

This time the defender brings down LW - PENALTY

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Hernandez, who has a habit of hatricks in the European finals ... blew the chance!

Major event 2:

But it didn't take him long to make his mark, a couple of minutes later ... 1-0 to Die Werkself!

starts with a turnover, the City GK was put under very minimal press but hoofed it clear (despite plenty of options in their third of the pitch)

this is not the kind of delivery Kean is hoping for... Matteo easily wins the header. and now we have possession in midfield with Allwein

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He possibly shifts it too quickly out wide, by my LW is in plenty of space so no harm done. See how, due to their mentality and lack of pressing, their CMs are tracking back very deep rather than attacking the ball carriers

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It's of little mind to us, as again the CF comes deep with back to goal to take the ball.. and now they can't help themselves but commit to a press. cha ching...

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Hernandez wide to Kayombo (AMR) this time

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he commits the defenders and GK and plays a glorious square pass

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Hernandez follows up for the tap in to make up for his penalty miss of moments before.

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HT 1-0 without serious event at the other end

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As expected, we have had the ball... however, alarming they had more shots and decent conversion to shots on goal. Genuinely don't recall any threat in the highlights ... so without checking, I'm scratching these down as long shots ... easier to dismiss it as I'm 1-0 up :D

Major Event 3:

Second half, no tactical change, so perhaps just a passionate half time speech...

City come out and carve us open...

this time they win the first header off GK clearance, Mbia a powerful LW I've tried multiple times to sign (for offers up to £200m!!) wins the knock down to Simeone (another player I've offered huge amounts for)

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My aggressive press is wasted on his quality, and he is quick to play the ball behind for Keans run

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Kean and Luchetta are clean through and really should equalise. Luchetta run too close to Leupp with his finish and smashed it straight at him... phew!

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We then had a couple of half chances.. Almeida and Allwein opening up space on the D for decent shooting chances, Almeida hit the post and Allwein, from a better position, blazed over.

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the game ticked along to 80 odd mins when City decided a new tact. Really bizarre they took off Kean and went to 4231. But with attacking mentality

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I'm on the edge of my seat, too involved and at 1-0 too reluctant to change anything... I'm yet to make a sub despite both AMCs stuck on 6.5 & 6.7 rating, having missed good chances.

The City change however really opened things up for us.

Look now how their midfield are behind the play, rather than dropping deep. Allwein in acres of space, I have 4 or 5 players making bursting runs forward, City have no one coming back, and a very open staggered 5 man defence

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Allwein moves the ball out left where my LW is goal side of his marker... look across the box we have 3 players at the back post goal side of the opponent LB and CM

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Needless to say this resulted in 2-0 game over as Kayombo scores another goal typical of our season.

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Full time - whilst the stats read similar to the first half... the game was more comfortable than it seemed. City created one glorious chance we had 4 or 5.

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Quick note on countering

I couldn't all the images on the last page. Just wanted a quick example of a counter too - given my aggressive setup, and use of standard mentality, you would assume we don't counter.

This comes from set play, so is a bit 'forced' but a counter none the less, and because I have aggressive positioning, my players natural inclination after turnover of play, is to get high up the field. City play the free kick short (stupid) and the receiver is pressed by 3 players and of course loses the ball.

Lopera squeezes it wide to space where my D-Line is already bursting out (albeit in my half... they are now goal side)

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doesn't take long for my first receiver to realise the counter is on and plays direct ball to Kayombo who stayed forward during the set piece. It's 2 vs 1 in their favour, but he has gotten space out wide of them.

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This is the key illustration of the move, which eventually ends up with a poor cross to the keepers arms... we have LW and both AMC and CF all bursting towards the box and just two defenders in their way. Should probably have resulted in a goal.

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End of season update:

A pretty successful season, just one defeat in each half of the season in the league

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We finished top of the possession charts with 60% (where we managed this without any passing instruction or retain possession, simply a very high press)

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We finished strongly in the attacking team stats too, a common theme that with pretty much any shape I create, the roles and duties selected still result in large number of crosses, chances created, shots on target

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Our cup and Euro form was nothing short of spectacular, the only blemish an away draw to PSG, where they did what City couldn't and exploited the central space clinically.

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And lastly, as usual, a wrap up of the goals and assists distribution. I was particularly happy with my first choice AMCs hitting the 10 goal mark. With strikers and wingers predominant, I often don't see AMCs or CMs get to the 10 goal mark... no pens or free kicks either

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Kayombo was probably the stand out player and to reflect this (whilst it doesn't particularly play to his strengths) I will be documenting Season 14 - The Wide Target Man

Moving from an aggressive unorthodox formation to a more sensible 4123/4231 wide.

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9 minutes ago, craigcwwe said:

These threads have been a fantastic read @westy8chimp. Can tell there's been some effort and thought put into them. 

 

Thanks! Getting tougher, but its coming (to its third...) natural conclusion anyway. 

1) hard to keep thinking of new directions to take it in, in theme with chopping and changing tactics, styles and personnel

2) i usually play an hour or so in the evening, so have an update every few days... I screen shot as i play and forward it to work, do the write ups at work... Both home life and work are more pressured at the moment

But i have two more in pipeline to complete the journey :D

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