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Mentality equals aggression....yeah Mentality again.


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Everyone knows Mentality is one of the hardest things to understand and get our heads wrapped around.

As an American though I feel that I am at a further disadvantage when creating tactics because I get to see and deal with so little football. (Just try an MLS save sometime to see the disaster that is football in American).

So, when it came to Mentality I always tried to think of it as risk level. The higher the Mentality the more risk you take and the lower the Mentality the less risk you take. Though this view is correct I believe it has lead me into some error and I have come up with what I think is a better way to consider Mentality.

So now this is what I have come up with:
I think of Mentality not as risk level, but as aggression level.

The way I have come to see it is that the higher the Mentality the more aggressive you are asking the player to be. It is this higher aggression level that is causing the higher risk. Thus for lower Mentalities it is isn't so much you are asking the players to be more careful, but are telling them to be less aggressive and from this lowering of aggression you get less risky.

What do you think?

What lead me to this idea is that certain tactics kept calling for higher levels of Mentality. Example is Tiki-Taka wants a Positive Mentality. It isn't that Tiki-Taka cannot be played at a lower Mentality, but it is best played with players being more aggressive, and a higher Mentality, and therefore taking more risk.

The same is for Counter-Attacking. Counter systems always seem to ask for lower Mentalities, Cautious or Defensive. They work best when you ask you players to be less aggressive and therefore you are taking less risk.

So what do you think? Am I right, wrong?

 

Edited by Herolover
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Mentality for me is the quickness of transitions into attack. Higher mentalities means you transition quicker into attack whilst lower mentalities means you're more passive.

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1 minute ago, n00bmaster69 said:

Mentality for me is the quickness of transitions into attack. Higher mentalities means you transition quicker into attack whilst lower mentalities means you're more passive.

I would tend to think of quicker vs slower transition as the Directness of Passing. More Direct you are moving the ball up the pitch quicker, shorter passes move the ball up the pitch slower.

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I think you're wrong, particularly with your point about counter-attacking systems.

Counter-attacking systems work best on balanced or positive mentality, because when you do manage to get the ball you need to encourage your players to take adequate risk with the passes and runs they make.  A player is going to be far less inclined to launch a defence-splitting, counter-attacking pass on cautious mentality than they are on positive mentality.

I think you're just overthinking it, the best way to think of mentality is to think of it as a risk modifier.  You want to play a safe, keep-ball, possession-dominant style of play? This means you don't want your players taking too many risks, so you shouldn't opt for a mentality higher than Balanced, maybe Positive. 

You want to play direct with fast transitions and aggressive runners? You should opt for a mentality of at least Balanced for reasons stated earlier.

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12 minutes ago, Herolover said:

I would tend to think of quicker vs slower transition as the Directness of Passing. More Direct you are moving the ball up the pitch quicker, shorter passes move the ball up the pitch slower.

Then you would be 100% wrong out of 50% of what you said.

Cautious + Direct and Positive + Direct obviously shows you a difference in transitions.

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I want to make sure everyone knows that I am not saying that in order to play counter attacking football you have to be on a certain mentality.

However, a "Cautious" Mentality is a better choice.

If not, then why on all the preset counter attacking tactics does FM go to a "Cautious" mentality.

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The mentality is both about risk and aggression, depending on whether we are talking about the attacking or defensive aspect of the game. In attack (possession phase), it's about the willingness to take risks in terms of passing, forward movement, creative freedom and things like that. In the defensive phase of play, it's about how aggressive or passive your players should be when defending (pressing and tackling intensity). With all else being equal. 

 

3 hours ago, Herolover said:

Counter systems always seem to ask for lower Mentalities, Cautious or Defensive. They work best when you ask you players to be less aggressive and therefore you are taking less risk

No, this is a misconception many people have, which is the key reason why they tend to set up their "counter" tactics in a wrong way - precisely because of the mistaken assumption that "counter-attacking football requires a low team mentality". 

Unlike passive defensive styles such as catenaccio or parked bus, which basically do require a lower team mentality, the counter - albeit also a defensive style in essence - works much better on a slightly higher or at least moderate (i.e. balanced) mentality. Because higher mentalities - among other things - mean faster attacking transitions, which are essential for counter-attacking football, i.e. its attacking phase. Whereas the defensive stability and solidity is achieved through good compactness and balanced setup of roles and duties, which combined should create a compact low block, within which your players look to win the ball by defending a bit more aggressively and then launch a quick counter. 

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1 hour ago, Herolover said:

I want to make sure everyone knows that I am not saying that in order to play counter attacking football you have to be on a certain mentality.

However, a "Cautious" Mentality is a better choice.

If not, then why on all the preset counter attacking tactics does FM go to a "Cautious" mentality.

Preset tactics are full of tactical overkill, so I would not look at them as a point of reference by any means. I have never ever used any preset tactic, precisely because of that. 

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16 hours ago, Experienced Defender said:

Preset tactics are full of tactical overkill, so I would not look at them as a point of reference by any means. I have never ever used any preset tactic, precisely because of that. 

Someone at SI should get someone from these forums to consult with them over that.

18 hours ago, Herolover said:

However, a "Cautious" Mentality is a better choice.

It depends how you want to set things up, really. There are two choices. You set up the offensive side of the counter and modify the defensive side. Or you set up the defensive side and modify the offensive side. The approach I take entirely depends on the results I expect. 

So against a team who I know will leave space behind, but I think I can beat, I will be more aggressive with my default setup. Use positive or attacking as a base. Then I will make sure my defence is set up as I want my modifying the TIs and PIs to get it working. This is great for fast transitions and risk taking counter attacking where players get forward and we attack with gusto. Some kind of unfettered and chaotic counter attack which I think can overwhelm and my defence can survive enough to take the risk.

Alternatively, I may want to play a much more conservative counter attack approach against a good side. Where each player does their job, and we focus first on the defensive side of things. Then the counter attack is coming from the natural way I have set up my players. Here a more cautious mentality, with directness and transition speed added with TIs and PIs. But I will try to avoid all my players taking risks and not encourage them to take risks and bomb up the field. 

These are two very different styles of playing, but both could be termed counter attacking. There is no right or wrong way to go about setting this kind of thing up. My go to rule is that if I want to be offense first I go positive and attacking. If I want to be defensive first I go cautious or defensive. And then I modify whichever part of the team needs modifying from whatever base we now start from. 

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This is exactly why I asked the question I did.

My thinking on Mentality had changed and I wanted to make sure my thinking wasn't off. Now I see it was.

Now, if I can just learn when to set what mentality and how to master tactics I will be set :).

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You did three good things.

- Thought about the game and challenged your understanding

- Asked good questions

- Made a platform for a really nice thread

:cool:

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16 小时前, sporadicsmiles说:

Someone at SI should get someone from these forums to consult with them over that.

It depends how you want to set things up, really. There are two choices. You set up the offensive side of the counter and modify the defensive side. Or you set up the defensive side and modify the offensive side. The approach I take entirely depends on the results I expect. 

So against a team who I know will leave space behind, but I think I can beat, I will be more aggressive with my default setup. Use positive or attacking as a base. Then I will make sure my defence is set up as I want my modifying the TIs and PIs to get it working. This is great for fast transitions and risk taking counter attacking where players get forward and we attack with gusto. Some kind of unfettered and chaotic counter attack which I think can overwhelm and my defence can survive enough to take the risk.

Alternatively, I may want to play a much more conservative counter attack approach against a good side. Where each player does their job, and we focus first on the defensive side of things. Then the counter attack is coming from the natural way I have set up my players. Here a more cautious mentality, with directness and transition speed added with TIs and PIs. But I will try to avoid all my players taking risks and not encourage them to take risks and bomb up the field. 

These are two very different styles of playing, but both could be termed counter attacking. There is no right or wrong way to go about setting this kind of thing up. My go to rule is that if I want to be offense first I go positive and attacking. If I want to be defensive first I go cautious or defensive. And then I modify whichever part of the team needs modifying from whatever base we now start from. 

Can you provide example of how you set up the offensive side / the defensive side?  

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I only use balanced mentality and adjust team instructions and player roles to get what I want. 

I've never needed to touch mentality to be successful. 

By sticking to one mentality it was easier for me to know exactly what to expect from a team instruction or the behaviour I would get from a player role/duty. 

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6 hours ago, kayyuenchinup said:

Can you provide example of how you set up the offensive side / the defensive side?  

Normally I set up defence and modify attack, so let's go from there, from the base 433 I used. 

So I set up the defensive side. What do I want the players to do? Always the first thing to ask. In a 433 I want my players to get back into defence and set up a medium block. I avoid being too defensive because inviting pressure is rarely a good thing. I do not want teams playing right up against my area, but neither am I looking to engage them really high up the pitch. This defines all the defenders, the DMC and the two CMs. They get back into their positions. The roles are malleable somewhat, but lets assume DC(D) x2, DM(D) for the central 3. The roles of the other players are going to be defined by what I want to do in attack. The front 3 will be told to close down more individually. This is to encourage a little bit of pressure to try to let the rest of my team find shape. Sometimes I will instead man mark the full backs with the wide players if that is a problem. 

So what TIs go with this? I want to use a cautious mentality, to reduce risk taking. I definitely do not want to be playing out of defence. I want the standard DL and LOE. And that is pretty much it. I should be able to defend well enough like this. I'm considering this a game where I have a chance, so it is not parking the bus, but it is expecting to be attacked regularly. See how simple this is? I do not need to think in great detail. Everyone has a job in a 433 I just let them do it. 

Now for the attacking modifications to this. How do I want to attack? Well, vertically, but not long ball. The risk of long ball is that if it does not work, then you end up conceding possession too quickly and are under more pressure. Part of the defensive tactic is to not give the ball away too quickly, and if we do we make sure the transition from attack to defence is either over or the ball is lose in the opposition third. So this helps to define my other roles. I will want at least 3, and perhaps 4 attacking duties. One in defence, on in midfield, and maybe 2 in the front 3. Usually I will do with a FB(A), a CM(A), an IF(A) (or IW, or W, really this depends on the players) and a PF(A) - remember my striker is always pressing so this role makes sense. This player can also be on support duty to link with the other attack duty players. Typically I deploy the CM and IW/IF on opposite flanks so I have attacks on both sides of a striker, but again this depends. Since I am pushing players forward, I will want to have the other FB as a FB(D). Kinda gives me something like a back 3 when I attack. This is safe, and minimizes counter attacking risk. The other midfielder can be whatever you want. I usually use a DLP and W on support, but it can and does change. No roaming player in midfield though, that leaves us too open. What is the aim of this? Well, we get the ball, get it forward quickly (but safely), and use the players rushing forward to overwhelm a team during the transition, never allowing them to get set in defence. 

So how do we do safe, quick transitions? There are several scenarios. Firstly we win possession without the GK or the ball going dead. We want to get the ball forward quickly. So I would think TIs like more direct passing, higher tempo and counter. There is the situation where we recover the ball via the GK. Here I will instruct him to play it out short. This may seem counter intuitive, but there is a defined reason to this. After the keeper gets the ball it is unlikely I will get the kind of fast transitions I want. Particularly from a GK. So we play it short, and we try to pull a team on to us. We are not looking to pass around in defence, but draw as many players in as possible and play it behind them to the midfield or forwards. It is a pressing trap. And it can manufactor a quick attack where none should exist if a team overzealously presses you with too high a LOE. The final scenario is defensive set pieces, which are vital to set up well when counter attacking. You want fast players on the edge of the box and up front (fast and good acceleration actually). I usually put two on the edge of the area and one up front, so I can quickly counter with 3 players. This usually triggers the in game counter attack mechanic, so there is nothing extra to do. 

So I hope that makes sense to you? In summary, the TIs I would use were.

In possession:
- higher tempo
- more direct passing

In transition:
- counter
-short GK distribution (to CBs/FBs).

In defence: 
nothing.

and with a cautious mentality.

Anyway I hope it is clear that I have set up the team initially with defence in mind, and then almost everything I have changed was based on attacking. You can do this in reverse, but I rarely ever do (mostly because my instincts work the other way around). I do not have the copy of FM on this PC so it is hard to display things pictorially, so please ask for any clarification. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, sporadicsmiles said:

Normally I set up defence and modify attack, so let's go from there, from the base 433 I used. 

So I set up the defensive side. What do I want ound). I do not have the copy of FM on this PC so it is hard to display things pictorially, so please ask for any clarification........

This is a pretty outstanding way of showing how to set up a tactic.

Thank you

Edited by Herolover
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1 minute ago, Herolover said:

This is a pretty outstanding way of showing how to set up a tactic.

Thank you

Thanks. 

I genuinely wish I was better at explaining the way I do things in my head to others though! I can see things clearly in my head but rarely can explain clearly. 

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One thing that used to be the case with mentality was that it affects the mentality splits, passing and aggression of your players by role.

So for instance on counter mentality your defenders passing range would increase and attackers passing range would decrease, the opposite being true of attacking mentality. This meant that defenders would be more inclined to look for long direct balls on lower mentalities but shorter passes ok higher ones.

I could go look I suppose but has anything seen that this has changed?  It seems simplistic to say that you need to have positive mentalities to set up a counter side.

 

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28 minutes ago, johnnyyakuza78 said:

So for instance on counter mentality your defenders passing range would increase and attackers passing range would decrease, the opposite being true of attacking mentality. This meant that defenders would be more inclined to look for long direct balls on lower mentalities but shorter passes ok higher ones.

Not sure defenders and attackers is the right terminology.  Think it should be by duty, and noting that fullbacks (defenders in most people's eyes) can play on an attack duty.

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39 minutes ago, johnnyyakuza78 said:

One thing that used to be the case with mentality was that it affects the mentality splits, passing and aggression of your players by role.

So for instance on counter mentality your defenders passing range would increase and attackers passing range would decrease, the opposite being true of attacking mentality. This meant that defenders would be more inclined to look for long direct balls on lower mentalities but shorter passes ok higher ones.

I could go look I suppose but has anything seen that this has changed?  It seems simplistic to say that you need to have positive mentalities to set up a counter side.

 

I do know that Mentality changes so many things such as passing, width, and just about everything. Cautious shorter passing is no as long as Positive shorter passing.

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42 minutes ago, johnnyyakuza78 said:

One thing that used to be the case with mentality was that it affects the mentality splits, passing and aggression of your players by role.

So for instance on counter mentality your defenders passing range would increase and attackers passing range would decrease, the opposite being true of attacking mentality. This meant that defenders would be more inclined to look for long direct balls on lower mentalities but shorter passes ok higher ones.

I could go look I suppose but has anything seen that this has changed?  It seems simplistic to say that you need to have positive mentalities to set up a counter side.

 

To play efficiently fast, higher mentalities imo are better. Players tend to try to move the ball to the front even if there is a risk when they see an opportunity to take. This effect is even more pronounced for support and attack duty players.

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5 hours ago, sporadicsmiles said:

Normally I set up defence and modify attack, so let's go from there, from the base 433 I used. 

So I set up the defensive side. What do I want the players to do? Always the first thing to ask. In a 433 I want my players to get back into defence and set up a medium block. I avoid being too defensive because inviting pressure is rarely a good thing. I do not want teams playing right up against my area, but neither am I looking to engage them really high up the pitch. This defines all the defenders, the DMC and the two CMs. They get back into their positions. The roles are malleable somewhat, but lets assume DC(D) x2, DM(D) for the central 3. The roles of the other players are going to be defined by what I want to do in attack. The front 3 will be told to close down more individually. This is to encourage a little bit of pressure to try to let the rest of my team find shape. Sometimes I will instead man mark the full backs with the wide players if that is a problem. 

So what TIs go with this? I want to use a cautious mentality, to reduce risk taking. I definitely do not want to be playing out of defence. I want the standard DL and LOE. And that is pretty much it. I should be able to defend well enough like this. I'm considering this a game where I have a chance, so it is not parking the bus, but it is expecting to be attacked regularly. See how simple this is? I do not need to think in great detail. Everyone has a job in a 433 I just let them do it. 

Now for the attacking modifications to this. How do I want to attack? Well, vertically, but not long ball. The risk of long ball is that if it does not work, then you end up conceding possession too quickly and are under more pressure. Part of the defensive tactic is to not give the ball away too quickly, and if we do we make sure the transition from attack to defence is either over or the ball is lose in the opposition third. So this helps to define my other roles. I will want at least 3, and perhaps 4 attacking duties. One in defence, on in midfield, and maybe 2 in the front 3. Usually I will do with a FB(A), a CM(A), an IF(A) (or IW, or W, really this depends on the players) and a PF(A) - remember my striker is always pressing so this role makes sense. This player can also be on support duty to link with the other attack duty players. Typically I deploy the CM and IW/IF on opposite flanks so I have attacks on both sides of a striker, but again this depends. Since I am pushing players forward, I will want to have the other FB as a FB(D). Kinda gives me something like a back 3 when I attack. This is safe, and minimizes counter attacking risk. The other midfielder can be whatever you want. I usually use a DLP and W on support, but it can and does change. No roaming player in midfield though, that leaves us too open. What is the aim of this? Well, we get the ball, get it forward quickly (but safely), and use the players rushing forward to overwhelm a team during the transition, never allowing them to get set in defence. 

So how do we do safe, quick transitions? There are several scenarios. Firstly we win possession without the GK or the ball going dead. We want to get the ball forward quickly. So I would think TIs like more direct passing, higher tempo and counter. There is the situation where we recover the ball via the GK. Here I will instruct him to play it out short. This may seem counter intuitive, but there is a defined reason to this. After the keeper gets the ball it is unlikely I will get the kind of fast transitions I want. Particularly from a GK. So we play it short, and we try to pull a team on to us. We are not looking to pass around in defence, but draw as many players in as possible and play it behind them to the midfield or forwards. It is a pressing trap. And it can manufactor a quick attack where none should exist if a team overzealously presses you with too high a LOE. The final scenario is defensive set pieces, which are vital to set up well when counter attacking. You want fast players on the edge of the box and up front (fast and good acceleration actually). I usually put two on the edge of the area and one up front, so I can quickly counter with 3 players. This usually triggers the in game counter attack mechanic, so there is nothing extra to do. 

So I hope that makes sense to you? In summary, the TIs I would use were.

In possession:
- higher tempo
- more direct passing

In transition:
- counter
-short GK distribution (to CBs/FBs).

In defence: 
nothing.

and with a cautious mentality.

Anyway I hope it is clear that I have set up the team initially with defence in mind, and then almost everything I have changed was based on attacking. You can do this in reverse, but I rarely ever do (mostly because my instincts work the other way around). I do not have the copy of FM on this PC so it is hard to display things pictorially, so please ask for any clarification. 

Top quality post. Don't be hard on yourself, you've got a great way of clearly explaining how you go through the process. Wordy, yes, but in a good way 😎

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7 hours ago, sporadicsmiles said:

The front 3 will be told to close down more individually. 

 

Can you post a screenshot of how to do this? 

Edited by benhoward12
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"Mentality" in my opinion is one of the most important changes that need to be made to this game even if the only change is the descriptions used. I completely ignore the mentality descriptions. It has been the biggest cause of frustration for me while learning this game. I've heard mentalities described simply as a "risk modifier" but this was too abstract for me to fully understand.

My advice would be to think of mentalities as how you want your transitions to look. For example: 

Attacking Mentality:
Offensive Transition: Attack rapidly with long balls and many forward runs
Defensive Transition: Win the ball back as soon as possible by pressing hard

Defensive Mentality:
Offensive Transition: Keep possession and take as few risks as possible
Defensive Transition: Don't take any risks by pressing or diving into tackles to win the ball back

Your instructions and roles/duties will obviously have a massive impact and will allow you to mold just the mentality into your specific style of play. Or at least that's how I look at the game. If someone more experienced can correct me that would be appreciated.
 

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8 小时前, sporadicsmiles说:

Normally I set up defence and modify attack, so let's go from there, from the base 433 I used. 

So I set up the defensive side. What do I want the players to do? Always the first thing to ask. In a 433 I want my players to get back into defence and set up a medium block. I avoid being too defensive because inviting pressure is rarely a good thing. I do not want teams playing right up against my area, but neither am I looking to engage them really high up the pitch. This defines all the defenders, the DMC and the two CMs. They get back into their positions. The roles are malleable somewhat, but lets assume DC(D) x2, DM(D) for the central 3. The roles of the other players are going to be defined by what I want to do in attack. The front 3 will be told to close down more individually. This is to encourage a little bit of pressure to try to let the rest of my team find shape. Sometimes I will instead man mark the full backs with the wide players if that is a problem. 

So what TIs go with this? I want to use a cautious mentality, to reduce risk taking. I definitely do not want to be playing out of defence. I want the standard DL and LOE. And that is pretty much it. I should be able to defend well enough like this. I'm considering this a game where I have a chance, so it is not parking the bus, but it is expecting to be attacked regularly. See how simple this is? I do not need to think in great detail. Everyone has a job in a 433 I just let them do it. 

Now for the attacking modifications to this. How do I want to attack? Well, vertically, but not long ball. The risk of long ball is that if it does not work, then you end up conceding possession too quickly and are under more pressure. Part of the defensive tactic is to not give the ball away too quickly, and if we do we make sure the transition from attack to defence is either over or the ball is lose in the opposition third. So this helps to define my other roles. I will want at least 3, and perhaps 4 attacking duties. One in defence, on in midfield, and maybe 2 in the front 3. Usually I will do with a FB(A), a CM(A), an IF(A) (or IW, or W, really this depends on the players) and a PF(A) - remember my striker is always pressing so this role makes sense. This player can also be on support duty to link with the other attack duty players. Typically I deploy the CM and IW/IF on opposite flanks so I have attacks on both sides of a striker, but again this depends. Since I am pushing players forward, I will want to have the other FB as a FB(D). Kinda gives me something like a back 3 when I attack. This is safe, and minimizes counter attacking risk. The other midfielder can be whatever you want. I usually use a DLP and W on support, but it can and does change. No roaming player in midfield though, that leaves us too open. What is the aim of this? Well, we get the ball, get it forward quickly (but safely), and use the players rushing forward to overwhelm a team during the transition, never allowing them to get set in defence. 

So how do we do safe, quick transitions? There are several scenarios. Firstly we win possession without the GK or the ball going dead. We want to get the ball forward quickly. So I would think TIs like more direct passing, higher tempo and counter. There is the situation where we recover the ball via the GK. Here I will instruct him to play it out short. This may seem counter intuitive, but there is a defined reason to this. After the keeper gets the ball it is unlikely I will get the kind of fast transitions I want. Particularly from a GK. So we play it short, and we try to pull a team on to us. We are not looking to pass around in defence, but draw as many players in as possible and play it behind them to the midfield or forwards. It is a pressing trap. And it can manufactor a quick attack where none should exist if a team overzealously presses you with too high a LOE. The final scenario is defensive set pieces, which are vital to set up well when counter attacking. You want fast players on the edge of the box and up front (fast and good acceleration actually). I usually put two on the edge of the area and one up front, so I can quickly counter with 3 players. This usually triggers the in game counter attack mechanic, so there is nothing extra to do. 

So I hope that makes sense to you? In summary, the TIs I would use were.

In possession:
- higher tempo
- more direct passing

In transition:
- counter
-short GK distribution (to CBs/FBs).

In defence: 
nothing.

and with a cautious mentality.

Anyway I hope it is clear that I have set up the team initially with defence in mind, and then almost everything I have changed was based on attacking. You can do this in reverse, but I rarely ever do (mostly because my instincts work the other way around). I do not have the copy of FM on this PC so it is hard to display things pictorially, so please ask for any clarification. 

Inspiring, detailed information from you as always, thank you.  

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My mentality approach would be (My experience and learning from the game)  

Start with balance

0:1 Remain balance (If remain 0:1 75 minutes change to positive, 80 minutes change to attacking, 90 minutes change to very attacking if home game)

*Notice Premier League games, teams losing 0-1 will not go attack immediately, they hold and to be solid first then attack in a appropriate period

0:2 Change to positive + Shout Demand more

0:3 Change to attacking + Shout Fire Up

0:4 Back to Balance (Pushing the team to attack will concede more goals) + Shout No Pressure


1:0 Remain balance

2:0 Change to cautious - remove some attack team instructions

3:0 Change to defensive

4:0 Change to very defensive + Shout praise 

5:0 Change to very defensive + shout no pressure and remove all team instructions (Let the team play freely without instructions) 
 

 

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for basicly every aspect of your tactic there is a more riskier option and a less riskier option

Direct passing = High Risk, short passing = low risk, increased pressing intesinty = high risk,... you get the point I guess. 

you can set your risk levels for in possession, in transition and out of transition.

mentality basicly does set your overall risk level as a starting point.

attacking mentality = wider, more direct, faster, more dribbles, more shooting, more crosses, riskier transitions, riskier movement, more pressing, basicly everything. Vice versa with more defensive mentalities. 

That’s as easy as I can explain.

to make your choice: how dominant will your team be compared to the others the better your team the higher your mentality. and then adjust the risk levels to your liking in terms of what kind of football you want to play. But always keep in mind where you starting at. if you are an underdog team and wanna go with short passes, you might pick cautious mentality but leave passing and width on standard. (Because cautious already goes with shorter passes and a more narrow shape) But instead add pass into space and be more expressive, to equal risk for more attacking power. 

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I think there is some misunderstanding on how the counter attack instruction works.

If my memory serves me right, then what it does is to max out mentality and tempo when there is an opportunity to counter.

so for example, if you use the gengen pressen preset on an attacking mentality, then the counter attack instruction litteraly does nothing since your other instructions already does the same thing 

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I've made some tests last night with mentality. My team is a 4th division side and we were playing against a premier league team for the Cup. We got battered 6-1 playing balanced mentality. We lost 6-0 in Counter and Defensive mentalities and then beat them in penalties (were winning until 92th minute) with a positive mentality.

I know this is a very short and inconclusive (very quick) test but what surprised me is that they barely created any danger against our Positive 433 Gegenpress. It makes me confused tbh.

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4 minutes ago, Falahk said:

I think there is some misunderstanding on how the counter attack instruction works.

If my memory serves me right, then what it does is to max out mentality and tempo when there is an opportunity to counter.

so for example, if you use the gengen pressen preset on an attacking mentality, then the counter attack instruction litteraly does nothing since your other instructions already does the same thing 

Further to this I think all the Transition Instructions might be nothing more rehashed labels for what people thought were defunct TIs.

  • For example, could CounterPress actually be Hassle Opponents?  A quick transfer to VA Attacking team mentality so that all players 'temporarily' max close down and tight mark.
  • The Regroup is actually Stand Off Opponents?  A quick transfer to Contain team mentality so all players 'temporarily' min close down and loose mark.
  • Then Counter becomes a quick transfer upon regaining possession (if certain triggers are met) to a VA Attacking team mentality temporarily.  A bit like Take More Risks.
  • And finally Hold Shape is akin to Take Less Risks (or maybe Take a Breather) and on regaining possession is another temporary transfer to Contain mentality with a slowed down tempo.

The above is purely speculative but to @Falahk's point, if you already play on a VA team mentality then counter isn't really much of a temporary boost at all.  However if you play on Cautious team mentality with Counter ticked then when it kicks in, you'll notice a distinctly different and gung-ho passage of play.

Would like to be wrong but have always thought the 'In Transition' phase since it was introduced was little more than a smoke and mirrors redesign.

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17 hours ago, johnnyyakuza78 said:

So for instance on counter mentality your defenders passing range would increase and attackers passing range would decrease, the opposite being true of attacking mentality. This meant that defenders would be more inclined to look for long direct balls on lower mentalities but shorter passes ok higher ones.

As far as I'm aware, that's still very much the case. :thup:

Defenders on higher Mentalities will be more willing to pass the ball out from the back, because getting caught in possession close to own goal is the risk they're willing to take. With the higher risk-taking threshold, they will be more willing to make adventurous passes, which may sometimes also be direct (difference between clearing the ball long to get rid of it or attempting a pass).

Attackers on higher Mentalities, on the other hand, will be more willing to go direct. While on lower Mentalities they might prioritize keeping possession far away from own goal, they won't waste any time going forward on higher ones.

This is wonderfully explained in @THOG's Lines and Diamonds guide, so hopefully he doesn't mind me posting his Mentality tables here (thought they fit the discussion perfectly):

tI0DS8E.png

BwZen95.png

When it comes to counter-attacking systems, there's two ways to go about it (as already explained by @sporadicsmiles above):

A) Low-risk approach (Cautious/Defensive)

Players won't be willing to take risk. While attacking transitions can be modified with Instructions such as More Direct Passing or Higher Tempo, players will still remain relatively risk-averse; they may look for more direct passes or make decisions faster, but decisions they make will generally be the ones they deem safe.

Automatically triggered counter-attacks will still happen. Those trigger when certain conditions under the hood are met and when they do, player's Mentalities, Tempo and Passing Directness are maxed out regardless; there may be games when there's plenty and games when there's none, depending on the opposition.

B) High-risk approach (Positive/Attacking)

Players will be willing to take risk. They may look for positive passes the moment they win the ball back, whether they're short or direct. Because their risk-taking threshold is high, they will consider more options they would otherwise—they don't care if some are risky.

The goal of this method is to sort of replicate the automatically triggered counters. You're not relying on opposition pushing enough men forward to trigger them, instead you're asking your team to be forward-minded all the time (which also has its own risks, obviously).

For me, it comes down to what kind of risk I'm willing to take; I'm either risking not creating many chances, or risking chances being created against me (players may be more willing to press, mark tighter or lunge into tackles on higher Mentalities).

Mentality doesn't dictate the defensive solidity on its own, which is why high-risk ones aren't as counterintuitive for counter-attacking systems as they might seem (in-game descriptions aren't helping in this case). That's mainly down to Formation, Roles/Duties and out of possession Instructions.

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I'm not sure how accurate this is, but here's a simple way that I started thinking about it.

Mentality will dictate how many players your team strives to keep behind/in front of the ball at all times.

Defensive = Keep most players behind the ball at all times, both in defence and in attack

Attacking = Make make more runs behind the ball

 

This idea also fits the idea that aggressive counter attacking systems work better on balanced/positive mentality.

Edited by Chris2509
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