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[FM19] Does Cross Less Often actually do anything?


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I'm playing FM19 with Bayern Munich, Gegenpress preset except tempo down 1 notch.

Has anyone seen much impact from using the Cross Less Often PI? Against Man U after 18 mins I was unimpressed with the Wingbacks kicking 13 failed crosses into opposing defenders...

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So for Alaba Wingback(S) I chose Cross Less Often. For Rafinha, I had to change Duty to Support so Cross Less Often became available, then added the attack PIs Get Further Fwd, Cross From Byline. Watched the game for a bit and couldn't see much difference. Likewise, the stats at half-time seem to show the crossing mania continued...

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How realistic is it to expect to see some evidence of the change I've made by watching the game? What should I look for in the stats? Could the Cross From Byline PI interfere with the CLO instruction, I read guidetofm about this and didn't find anything...

I notice Rafinha made a lot more passes. I thought perhaps it could be that although Rafinha made more crosses he actually made less crosses as a % of his number of touches? So I decided to check this out. In the first 18 mins he had 38 touches and made 6 crosses (15%). After the change he had 78 touches and made 9 crosses (11%). So there's a small difference but not sure it's significant, nor even due to my change necessarily?

On a related note, the stats available in Player Analysis don't match Player Stats so guess that's a bug:

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Better news on the Team Analysis, though not sure what it tells me:

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Didn't post full tactic as it's very close to the preset as I mention, also the question is specifically about this PI and what I should be looking for to understand what difference it makes. Rafinha and Alaba have Decisions 14 and 15 respectively, so I assume that is high enough to pay some attention to the instructions I am giving them (if it makes a difference). 

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Instructions are effective only when they make sense and are consistent with the rest of the tactic - i.e. fit the tactic as a whole. Otherwise, they won't work or at least won't be as effective as you expect. Because instructions are not a magic bullet. 

For example, if a player lacks viable passing options, he will likely cross (or shoot from distance) even if you asked him not to. Because FM is a serious game and requires people to think logically.

The setup of roles and duties is key. Instructions are secondary. So if you fail to set up roles and duties properly - in a sensible fashion - no instruction is going to help. Moreover, with the right setup of roles and duties, (additional) instructions may not even be needed at all. Because roles and duties - or rather their interaction - already defines most of the instructions essentially.

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If you tell your player to get further forward (he perhaps has a Trait to get further forward as well?) what's he going to do with the ball in such advanced positions?  If he hasn't got someone near by and unmarked the only thing he can realistically do is cross it.

You also have the Gegenpress tactic selected.  This encourages your players to swamp the opposition in their own half, so play will tend to be squashed into a relatively small area of the pitch where space will be at a premium.  It's also an aggressive, direct sort of tactic when attacking, so players will look for risky passes (and crosses) at a relatively high tempo.

As your whole style of play is at a pretty frenetic pace where space for players to pass the ball around is fairly limited, asking a player to cross a bit less often isn't going to make much difference.

59 minutes ago, lanewalk said:

Rafinha and Alaba have Decisions 14 and 15 respectively, so I assume that is high enough to pay some attention to the instructions I am giving them (if it makes a difference). 

Decisions encourages players to make better decisions.  If they don't see a pass they'll decide by themselves to attempt a cross rather than get tackled regardless of what you tell them.  Instructions are not actually instructions.  They are tendencies.  If you "instruct" someone to cross less, all they'll actually do is tend to cross less if it's a valid option.

Always try to look at the bigger picture and how things may interact with one another, rather than things in isolation.  There is no harm in keeping the cross less PI set as it can encourage your players to look for an option, but when considering the rest of your system don't be surprised if it doesn't always have much of an impact :thup:.

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Thanks for the responses, that clarifies things. I would say I was thinking logically (that players would cross less often) but not holistically. Given what you've said I'll experiment with different role combinations (suitable for Gegenpress) before looking at PIs.   

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Simplicity. Players on the flanks will be coded to attempt crosses, after all, the goal is in the middle of the pitch and the ball needs to get in the back of it. Inversion helps to reduce the number of crosses as it in effect puts a player in a position where a cross is less commonsensical. Playing players on the contralateral wing to preferred foot not, even without inversion, reduces the number of crosses. Then of courses there's the Role, as suggested above, different roles will be more loyal to the cross. 

Question, what do you want the wingbacks to do in the advanced wide position? Is wing backing the best way to achieve the outcome desired?

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often too many crosses occure when options are limited or players are obliged to play quickly towards the goal. I would first look if there are options available to pass to when the player is attempting the cross and lower the tempo if options are available.

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Posted (edited)

As per the advice, I've moved away from using specific PIs for now and looking to play about with roles. On this subject, I recently splashed out on a new Advanced Playmaker, Pellegrini. First full match wasn't great though, only 78% pass completion, bit of a problem when the AP is getting most of the ball. I'm still using this Gegenpress preset (except Tempo down 1 notch):

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The pass map for Pellegrini looks like this:

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Seems like he has all the desirable passing attributes (Anticipation, Passing, Technique, Teamwork, Flair, Vision, Decisions):

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What I did notice is Pellegrini has Trait 'Tries Killer Balls Often'. I see on GuideToFM that Pass Into Space (part of tactic) and Risky Passes (part of Role) are complementary to TKBO. So is it that all three are combining here into an extreme Risky Passes instruction? I suppose that would mean that, despite being a natural AP, Pellegrini is an unsuitable AP for this particular tactic as things stand. Hopefully I have answered my own question here but would be good to know if others agree.

The other obvious thing is how many POP there are on the right flank. He's playing centrally, in fact the purple dot in centre circle shows Average With Ball slightly left of centre. I'm not exactly sure why this is happening but have a couple of theories:

1) He's two-footed, but has a slight right foot preference. I watched the clips and see some (not all) the passes were with the slightly weaker foot.

2) Relative speed of Wingbacks. Alaba left WB, has speed 16, Kimmich on the right only 12. So maybe Kimmich is not quick enough to get there? I'm not sure though, the clips show he's not quite reaching some of them but other passes are so bad not even Usain Bolt would get there. 

Do either of these theories make sense or would it be something else?

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Edited by lanewalk
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4 minutes ago, lanewalk said:

First full match wasn't great though, only 78% pass completion

How can you expect better pass completiom stats when you use higher tempo + pass into space + high-risk team mentality + SK on attack duty (as well as the counter in transition) ??? 

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To clarify, the pass completion stat is for Pellegrini personally, so it's relatively poor compared to teammates:

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Team pass completion was 83%. I suppose a more relevant comparison would be to another AP in the same position. I think it's worse than before but I will need to check that in future games.

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On 19/03/2021 at 13:51, herne79 said:

Decisions encourages players to make better decisions.  If they don't see a pass they'll decide by themselves to attempt a cross rather than get tackled regardless of what you tell them.  Instructions are not actually instructions.  They are tendencies.  If you "instruct" someone to cross less, all they'll actually do is tend to cross less if it's a valid option.

To follow up on this: 

Decisions is not the primary attribute for following instructions. Teamwork is. The tooltip for Teamwork even specifically says it: 

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