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A Simple Build, Evolution Leading to Success, Back Three Special, treble winners (series complete)


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Great post and good analysis of your squad. I also like the decisions you made about your tactics. It looks quite simple, but is well thought out.

Btw, I always wondered how to create those GIF's. Maybe someone can PM me to not disturb this thread.

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2 minutes ago, CARRERA said:

Great post and good analysis of your squad. I also like the decisions you made about your tactics. It looks quite simple, but is well thought out.

Btw, I always wondered how to create those GIF's. Maybe someone can PM me to not disturb this thread.

Thanks man.

i just wanted to show that it can be easy to get caught up in it all and get overwhelmed going back to basics can always help.

The second build should be far behind when things get a little more interesting and I’ll disclose my set piece routines. Before a do the final picture of the super system they became. 
 

in terms of GIF I use gyazo. Very easy to use but you need to pay 

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1 minute ago, halfspace3000 said:

Very cool thread , hope to see more of the evolution

Thanks! Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have the second title season written up with the evolution into a more attacking shape  

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1 hour ago, coach vahid said:

Happy to see you open a new thread. Always a pleasure to read you. 

Thanks very much. A different idea than doing recreation this time. As much as I enjoyed Atalanta it required a lot of external research. This time I thought I would show how i grow and tune my tactics rather than just building. 

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Brilliant write up.

I also really enjoyed your Atalanta recreation. They’re one of my favourite sides to watch in real life but it’s cool to see the journey you’ll be going on here too. Especially how your overload to isolate has been so effective with the amount of assists and goals coming from those areas. 
 

Do you think perhaps a modified version of this would work in the lower leagues? I’m currently implementing a counter attacking style in the 6th Tier in England mostly using a 4-4-2 or 5-3-2 but I’m often winning by just a goal and the games are very tight. Tempted to take some elements from here and see if it can be done! 
 

 

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1 hour ago, Fantasista10 said:

Brilliant write up.

I also really enjoyed your Atalanta recreation. They’re one of my favourite sides to watch in real life but it’s cool to see the journey you’ll be going on here too. Especially how your overload to isolate has been so effective with the amount of assists and goals coming from those areas. 
 

Do you think perhaps a modified version of this would work in the lower leagues? I’m currently implementing a counter attacking style in the 6th Tier in England mostly using a 4-4-2 or 5-3-2 but I’m often winning by just a goal and the games are very tight. Tempted to take some elements from here and see if it can be done! 
 

 

The easy answer is try it out. Am a firm believer that the game is fluid and there is no set in stone rules. Of course there is things you shouldn’t do and things that won’t work. But the true beauty of it all is you can often put your own spin on things much like real life. If we all followed the rules football would be boring and there would be no innovation. Imagine being Chris wilder getting promoted then using overlapping cb’s people would call that insane but the first year it caught so many people of guard.

I will explain more detail later as I link the tactics all into a big system but the most crucial thing in tactics is looking at the system as a whole rather just specific parts.

you say your using counter attacking So elements of the system will work for you but only if you have the right players. Hence why I showed the bit on comparison of my team in the league.

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I do like how simple you've made this tactic.  It's not a simple tactic, just simply done.  It means you can apply the general ideas to a lot of different playing and personnel situations. I used to put in so many instructions and micro-manage, but it often works so much better to figure out how you want to play, then set up roles and general TI's to allow the players you have to play the way you want them to.

Looking forward to going deep into this tactic.

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5 minutes ago, 13th Man said:

I do like how simple you've made this tactic.  It's not a simple tactic, just simply done.  It means you can apply the general ideas to a lot of different playing and personnel situations. I used to put in so many instructions and micro-manage, but it often works so much better to figure out how you want to play, then set up roles and general TI's to allow the players you have to play the way you want them to.

Looking forward to going deep into this tactic.

Couldn’t agree more. One of the biggest problems with most tactics is the use of unnecessary amounts of team instructions which are often contradictory of one and other and the desired style of play. When it comes to team instructions I don’t add them unless I’m trying to create some very specific that the mentality doesn’t give me. 

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7 hours ago, SixPointer said:

First off all thanks for taking the time to read the post

Thanks for taking the time to write it :thup:. Enjoyable and informative - great stuff!

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Great write up. 

I've been playing around with a 3-5-2 in my current save and while I've significantly exceeded expectations (promoted with Holstein Kiel first season/6th in the Bundesliga the next) I never really feel in control at all. I have one of the lowest possession percentages and find the wingbacks are constantly running down cul-de-sacs because of limited passing options. 

 

I have a pretty decent squad for the league now and had hoped that we'd hold onto the ball better and create more chances but I feel I'm going to have to change things up fairly significantly if I want to make that next step. I'm at a bit of a loss on what to do they currently. 

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39 minutes ago, warlock said:

Thanks for taking the time to write it :thup:. Enjoyable and informative - great stuff!

Thanks. The third episode is on route. It’s more short and sweet but more of a easier read to help aid ideas 

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1 minute ago, causeforconcern said:

Great write up. 

I've been playing around with a 3-5-2 in my current save and while I've significantly exceeded expectations (promoted with Holstein Kiel first season/6th in the Bundesliga the next) I never really feel in control at all. I have one of the lowest possession percentages and find the wingbacks are constantly running down cul-de-sacs because of limited passing options. 

 

I have a pretty decent squad for the league now and had hoped that we'd hold onto the ball better and create more chances but I feel I'm going to have to change things up fairly significantly if I want to make that next step. I'm at a bit of a loss on what to do they currently. 

It sounds like you maybe need a few tweaks. Without knowing your squad, you possibly need add a little more technical players who keep the ball well. You sound like you also need a few tactical tweaks maybe shuffle a couple of TI’s around. Personally I wouldn’t  rip it up and start again as what you’ve done has been successful so far. But as your reputation grows your tactic also has to. 

I didn’t do away with the first league title tactic it’s still there and comes back into play later on with a small spin on it and possibly becomes one of the most effective thought out tactics I’ve made. so don’t discard your already working tactic just try refine it and solve the issues you are seeing. 

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11 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

It sounds like you maybe need a few tweaks. Without knowing your squad, you possibly need add a little more technical players who keep the ball well. You sound like you also need a few tactical tweaks maybe shuffle a couple of TI’s around. Personally I wouldn’t  rip it up and start again as what you’ve done has been successful so far. But as your reputation grows your tactic also has to. 

I didn’t do away with the first league title tactic it’s still there and comes back into play later on with a small spin on it and possibly becomes one of the most effective thought out tactics I’ve made. so don’t discard your already working tactic just try refine it and solve the issues you are seeing. 

Yeah, I'd absolutely like to persevere with the shape as wingerless tactics have always been something I've gravitated towards since I started playing management games.

I just hate the inconsistentency I'm currently seeing- we'll beat a mid table side and look decent and then get completely outplayed by some of the worst sides in the league despite having significantly better players. It's no different in Europe either- I thrashed a very good Atalanta 3-0 and then needed a 90th min equaliser to beat an awful PAOK at home after being dominated by them. 

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19 minutes ago, causeforconcern said:

Yeah, I'd absolutely like to persevere with the shape as wingerless tactics have always been something I've gravitated towards since I started playing management games.

I just hate the inconsistentency I'm currently seeing- we'll beat a mid table side and look decent and then get completely outplayed by some of the worst sides in the league despite having significantly better players. It's no different in Europe either- I thrashed a very good Atalanta 3-0 and then needed a 90th min equaliser to beat an awful PAOK at home after being dominated by them. 

Is there any pattern with the inconsistency? Is it home/away games? Is it when you come up against a certain system or style? Do you lose goals at certain times in games? Do you lose certain types of goals? All things to look out for to try and solve the issue. 

Top tip for this is to watch back game highlights after, because you know the result it allows you to focus more closely on the finer details that could be going wrong, as you don’t have the pressure of trying to alter the result. 

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The second episode didn't disappoint! Great stuff :applause:

I really like how you evolved your tactic (and playing squad) without forgetting your principles/original style. I must say I've never been brave enough to try a 3 striker system but seeing your success with it is inspiring. 

Thanks for sharing your set piece set ups too - I've have relative success with my own routines but could definitely do with a Plan B (or even Plan C) in those tightly contested games. 

Looking forward to part three :thup:

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3 minutes ago, Fantasista10 said:

The second episode didn't disappoint! Great stuff :applause:

I really like how you evolved your tactic (and playing squad) without forgetting your principles/original style. I must say I've never been brave enough to try a 3 striker system but seeing your success with it is inspiring. 

Thanks for sharing your set piece set ups too - I've have relative success with my own routines but could definitely do with a Plan B (or even Plan C) in those tightly contested games. 

Looking forward to part three :thup:

Thanks very much I really appreciate the support.

I would much rather evolve a system rather than start a fresh due to a few factors.

Rarely do you see managers change an overall philosophy, Sean Dyche isn't all of a sudden going to change from direct counter attacking to Tiki-Taka. He may tweak his system slightly, depending on players availability and opposition. But his core principle of being hard to beat and playing direct won’t change greatly. He may play slightly higher against weaker teams or slightly lower against stronger teams. Episode 3 is about this aspect of my tactics. 

I also have built a squad tailored to my style of high tempo football with quick transitions designed to catch the opponent of guard. if I changed the core principle to that I would have to rebuild my squad vastly. I am not stating this can’t be done cause of course I could go Burnley and slowly transition them into possession-based team, but it takes time.

Also the original tactic worked it just needed to evolve with the times after winning a league title and teams uncovering my plans. There was no need to start a fresh like I did after the first two seasons.

 

 

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Really cool seeing this in depth breakdown of your 3 striker system and how your instructions pulled the outside strikers out to the flanks when defending while still having their attacking threat and presence in the box.  The the center back stepping up as a stopper it sometimes had the look of a 4-3-3 when you play it like that but with a bit more brawn from the central defender rather than a DM and the forwards being more specifically central.

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7 hours ago, 13th Man said:

Really cool seeing this in depth breakdown of your 3 striker system and how your instructions pulled the outside strikers out to the flanks when defending while still having their attacking threat and presence in the box.  The the center back stepping up as a stopper it sometimes had the look of a 4-3-3 when you play it like that but with a bit more brawn from the central defender rather than a DM and the forwards being more specifically central.

Thanks again! The strikers movements worked well especially when man marking fullbacks it made for a perfect counter if we could find them with the diagonal balls over the full back quickly after turning over. The stopper did move into midfield on occasion to snap in and win the ball. 

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Be a slight delay on the 4th and final instalment. Works busy again and it’s a sizeable post that I want to get perfect please just bare with me hopefully get it rounded off quicker than expected hopefully Sunday night. 

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I’ve been called into work today. So more than likely will be next Sunday before I can get this finalised. Sorry!

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11 hours ago, CARRERA said:

Good to see your team is making the progress you are looking for, keep the work up 

Thanks very much man! 

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It’s taking me longer than today to get the final post written up. Here’s hoping it’s done midweek! It’s a sizeable piece compared to the others. Sorry for the delay. 

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Posted (edited)

The Fourth Dimension

Intro

This is the final instalment of the small tactical journey I went on to bring success to Odd BK in Norway. The short series has been aimed at making small but effective changes to system without losing the overall principle of playing high tempo football with fast transitions. You could call it counter attacking football but it’s not in its purest form. In the last episode I’m going to cover in as much detail as possible the final tuning of the system that led to a domestic treble and how the small changes, I learned along the way led to the exact type of football I wanted to see. It would be larger post with lots of graphical clips. Hopefully, I can do the system justice in my writing up off it. As I always maintain this is just my view on how I play the game, I don't know the under the hood workings off the game nor am I a guru, its purely just my view of how to play and how I make it work for me.

Squad Building

This season it wasn’t about new players coming in, it was more about two players brought to the club at a young age and now blossoming into a fine strike partnership. Both have become the perfect foil for each other with in the system and one of the biggest elements of its success is the understanding they have. As well we can take a look at the change in point of view of the strengths of the team according to our analysts.

fe714c6c20e20a1d58eec36336f65d2e.pngRasmussen 2025

Henrik Rasmussen is the Dennis Bergkamp of the pair, technically sublime and intelligent he makes for the perfect deep lying forward linking play, dragging defenders out of positions, creating chances, and scoring goals. This his 4th season at the club has been his most productive 14 goals and 8 coming in Europe, he does fly to the games unlike Bergkamp ha-ha.

d44f7c3ad9c9fe1967b69b7120a9cf4d.pngTjåland 2025 

The cousin of a certain Erling Haaland he carries similar traits of him, A powerful, quick ruthless striker he lacks some technical abilities but more than makes up for it in other departments. He has been the top goal scorer now two years running and looks like he could well follow in his cousins footsteps to the bigger stage. Also, in his 4th season he has mastered the art of playing on the shoulder.

d8d672feb2cba1cc2aaaab277febf1cd.pngDefensive attributes league average 2025

Right back at the start this was one of the key things I highlighted, the distinct lack of pace I had in defence. Now above you can see through the signings of the right type of centre backs I now have the quickest defence in the league, I now can implement a higher defensive line comfortably, this was one of the first things I highlighted to be addressed and done so purely by looking at these screens which can be found in the team report analysts comparison section. I recommend it as it’s a great tool to work out your strengths and weaknesses against your opponents in the league.

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The difference in the squad is clear to see. We have moved away from being a big stubborn deep defending side, to a team with more technical ability and a better understanding of tactical positioning. The system requires these as I play at such speed with players often interchanging.

A key element to squad building is knowing what kind of players you need for your style whether it be a change in style (like me getting quicker CB’s) or if it’s because you’ve spotted a weakness in the current squad for the setup.

I always spend that little bit longer looking for players that suit the system. in this case it’s not the DNA route where there are core attributes are needed throughout the team, this is more specific to player position I don’t mind having a lazy poacher if he excels in the poacher side of things if he is hard working as well it’s a bonus, but the first focus is his main job.

The Final Odd Ball System

My plan here is to share the overall system so you can see the whole picture then I will break it down into segments and explain my reasons why and share examples of it them working in their individual sense before bringing them all together at the end to show the system in all its glory. This will be graphical as I when I was learning about tactics from the legends of the forum, I always found it easier to take in and understand when I had a graphical aspect rather than just text so I hope I can strike their perfect balance here.

227016142446c442de3f121dba3cb781.pngFinal Odd ball system overview

The final system has parts of everything written so far. The main aim behind the system is to be as balanced as possible without being to passive and lacking penetration. A clear threat going forward but solid at the back really what everyone wants. It wasn’t setup as defensive based or attacking based nor counter attacking strategy or possession based. I wanted the system to bring an element of each one of these styles so that opponents could tie us down or read our plans.

One minute we could be playing nice passing football the next a direct defensive splitting pass. I want to compress the game and make It hard for teams to play through but still allow space for us to attack in behind, I also want to draw teams out to get the space in behind if they aren’t willing to, I want to use my overloads, positional rotations, and interchanges to break down their stubborn defence.

Mentality

The single most important instruction you will pick, so its key to get this right. It influences pretty much everything from width, DL/LOE, tempo and passing directness. Here I have went for positive due to a few reasons.

6d0c6921981bfe7dab7c251cdf7daf24.png

The stronger team but wary of counter attacking threat, suits the plan down to the ground in most games. I want to be on the front foot taking the game to teams but also be aware of the threat if I overcommit players, I can be caught out.

patiently probe the final third not particularly something am overlay concerned about having but this is when the choice of team instructions & player instructions come into play to tailor the mentality to suit my game plan better. Hence why I have certain team instructions active like higher tempo and the RPM has more direct passing. I want to probe it but with some tempo to unsettle the defence, and the RPM has free reign to hit killer balls in behind.

full backs overlap, and midfielders break ahead of forwards and only at the right times, again a very essential part of our play and the combined with our roles, duties, Team, and player instructions should make for the nice interchanging play that is desired. Giving the system an element of fluidity when attacking.

maintain possession again not absolutely key in system but in certain situations where I am forced to draw opponents out to create the space in behind that I desire to exploit so much, this element of the mentality coupled with the play out of defence instruction should help create this when the situation arises. shorter build up play in deeper areas before turning the heat up a few notches as the ball is progressed higher up the pitch.

Roles & Duties

When building my roles and duties one of the most important things I feel is knowing each role individual mentality, it helps immensely for me to get an idea of the balance of the side. Whether I am looking for total balance throughout system or one side to be more attacking than the other or to create overloaded areas.

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The left-hand side has my two exploit players who have attacking and very attacking mentalities meaning they will be more direct and risk taking. The key thing on this side if the individual mentality on the CM who is cautious this is to help offset the attacking mentality of the wing back.

The right-hand side the overload is a lot less risky with two positive and one balanced mentality, meaning they will favour a more patient approach and look to hold on the ball more than the attacking left side, therefore this should draw the opponent into the overload side as we hold possession more safely there.

So already without even delving into the roles too much and mainly using duties I already have one side that will looks to take less risk on the ball and create an overload through safer possession and draw the opponent in, compared to the riskier side that will look to take risks which is essential if they are left 1v1 or 2v1 where they will need to be decisive and direct.

Another key mentality offset is the Shadow Striker and DLF as I look for them to rotate position in certain attacking structures, looking at their individual mentality alone gives a good indicator that this will be the case of course it takes more than just that but it’s a good start. Much like the back three you can see the offset in mentality from which helps the idea of the stopper being more aggressive, but he has the cover to do so.

Team Instructions

Now I feel it’s a good time to go through the team instructions to show how I use them to tailor the mentality to suit the style of play and how it will make my team act during the four phases of play. That are, defence, transition from defence to attack, attack, and transition from attack to defence.

f0d60778b96ce0418e183de624aa1fae.pngDefensive structure final Odd ball 

  • High defensive line
  • Lower line of engagement
  • Force opposition outside (defend narrow)
  • Pressing intensity more urgent
  • Get stuck in

The idea here is to have a high, narrow, compressed, aggressive block. The defence will sit higher but the rest of the team will drop in and sit narrow when its transitioned to it full defence shape, this will close the gaps between the lines and make it hard for anyone to play through. When they enter the block, they will be met with aggressive pressing and tackling which coupled with the lack of space between the lines should force the opponent into long balls to be mopped up by CB's or Sweeper keeper. The lower line of engagement will help encourage teams to bring the ball out and come higher therefore leaving space in behind for us to attack when turned over. If I am picking up a lot of bookings in a game, I remove the get stuck in.

  • Offside trap
  • Prevent short Gk distribution

Offside trap would make sense with a high line but due to the fact I never ever use a straight back three it doesn’t work. I always have either covers or stopper duties therefore I could easily be caught trying to play it with them not being in a line. Prevent short Gk distribution its juts totally against everything I am trying to do, I need the opponent playing out so that they progress up the pitch before walking into our hornet’s nest of a press and leave space in behind in doing so.

36537a004251d7e465777c54a4f8e5c7.pngTransition phases final Odd ball

  • Counter-Press
  • Counter

Counter press is probably the one most people would question, but the thinking behind it is if we lose the ball, we need to pressure it right away as I need pressure on the ball right away so that we can either win it and attack in the transition phase of our opponent or put enough pressure to allow us to gain some time to transition into our compressed narrow shape. At first, I tried a split block but the spilt was meaning 3/4 player were not dropping into the compressed shape. Counter is a must as we look to attack when the opponent is at its most vulnerable after losing the ball and give them no time to regain their shape and close the gap in behind them.

  • Distribution type
  • Distribute to player or area
  • Goalkeeper in possession

This area is where I feel so many people bottle neck the play with overkill instructions. I fine these are all for very specialised types off play so my take on it is, I don’t use them unless am trying to create something very specific and one dimension like route one football. I often see people with POD on and then asking their keeper to play to centre backs and rolling it out. This to me means you leave the keeper no option but to do this time and time again which then lets your opponent predicted the play which the forces him into forced balls that you haven't set up for.

You know I love real life examples. Peps city team are well known for playing out from the back more than any, but do you think pep says to Ederson no matter what play out of course not because look how many times Ederson has actually set goals up never mind went long. I want to play out from the back to draw opponents out, but I also want to counter or even just find the wing backs if the CBS are out the game. It gives more variety and stops the play from becoming predictable.

09c707b7e9d3acb9961a5e47136f0a2e.pngAttacking structures final Odd ball

  • Play out of defence
  • Focus play down the right
  • Overlap left
  • Higher tempo

Another area where it is easy to get carried away and add loads of instructions and just confuse and contradict your play. Again, my advice is to start the tactic without any instructions just mentality Roles and duties, then add team instructions after watching when you’re not happy something specific isn’t happening then add them bit by bit so you know what’s working and what’s not.

Here I have play out of defence to help encourage us draw teams out and then pounce when the opportunity arises. focus play down the right probably one of the most specific instructions I have added, this is of course to aid the overload side of the pitch, players will focus there passes and movements into this area therefore drawing our opponent into the area as well. Overlap left is purely to help with the aggressive exploit side of the system, this will up the mentality of the wing back and make him more attacking. Higher tempo one of the key features, I want us to be knocking the ball around quickly trying to unsettle the opponents shape or one better catch them before they transition into their defensive shape.

  • Width
  • Final Third
  • Pass into space

Width is a simple one, my overload isn’t a central or wide one, its lopsided therefore I don’t need to play narrow to compress the game to allow space for the flanks and in reverse I don’t need to stretch the game to make space between the lines. I’m happy with the default width setting from my positive mentality and will use player instructions to create specific areas of width.

The final third in any of my tactics is something I rarely touch on my base tactic due to the fact I find it restricting and specific, I like the idea of my players having freedom to do what they like in the final third but ill structure everything else to get them there. Pass into space probably makes the most sense as I do want to hit the space in behind but again, I like to leave it as being varied so we aren’t wasting the ball, it’s the same idea behind the passing length I don’t see why I should force my players to pass a certain way, I rather give them the choice to make their own decision. It helps with play not becoming predictable.

The tweaks section later will cover some of the stuff I do use from time to time make more specific threats when I see oppositions game plans or certain things happening.

Individual roles and duties

84261d1d7dd90e4e862367847952c33e.pngDefensive setup roles & duties

GK Sweeper keeper (support)

The most sensible approach for a few reasons, like his name suggests he will sweep behind the high defensive line and pick up any loose balls the back three miss. The fact I want to try hit teams in their transition is good idea to have the keeper willing to take passing risks when the chance is there, but it’s important to make sure your keeper has the ability to play the role, or you will find he’s because very wasteful rather than a potent weapon.

The support duty gives him the balance I need, I have two cover duties in front, so I don’t need him wondering too high or dribbling and taking unnecessary risks.

LCB Ball Playing Defender (cover)

Has been the BPD of the side throughout all these tactical shifts and tweaks. He can hit nice direct passes through the lines into the overloaded side but also send nice chips down the line into the exploit side. I tested the dribble more and stay wider idea with him similar to my Atalanta tactic, to see if he could become a weapon on the exploit side but found he was more effective just being a plain simple BPD.

The cover duty is really just for offset because am using a stopper and want to have another layer of cover behind the aggressive centre man, otherwise he would just be a standard defend duty. As I am defending narrow as a team am not overly concerned about him getting out to shut down wide men.

CB Central Defender (stopper)

The aggressive man in the three, looks to win the ball in the air or march forward into midfield and shut things down before it becomes a bigger problem. On the ball he does the easy thing either playing to either of his CB partners or just rolling into midfield. Nothing spectacular in any sense here just a good old-fashioned defender. 

The main reason I went for a stopper duty is to help nullify any attacks early if the midfield two is bypassed. The shadow striker essentially becomes a striker, the roaming playmaker could be pull strings anywhere on the park so this leaves one man in the middle. so, I felt the stopper would add some bite if he were over run. Stopper can thrust forward and make another line of defence a head of the other pair.

RCB Ball Playing Defender (cover)

After some nice squad building and player development its now viable to have two ball playing defenders either side of the centre. The main reason I wanted to eventually get a BPD here was purely to help in overloading his side of the pitch, hence why he has stay wider added as a player instruction helping him to drift out to the touchline to aid the overload side. I did use dribbles more, but it limits the chances of him hitting nice switches into the exploit side, so I removed it.

The cover duty is really just for offset because am using a stopper and want to have another layer of cover behind the aggressive centre man, otherwise he would just be a standard defend duty. As I am defending narrow as a team am not overly concerned about him getting out to shut down wide men. exact same reasonng behind the other side of the three.

23519cd643ce398ae9c218867c97d708.pngWide men setup roles & duties

LWB Wing-Back (attack)

The attacking half of the pendulum is started off with the left wing back. He is tasked with bombing down the flank and creating havoc, often a provider but certainly gets himself on the end of things as well. Finds himself 1v1 more often than not and nine times out of ten he punishes the opponent for allowing it. The assist numbers down the years from here is remarkable with a player that's been developed from a cheap signing to being team of the year every season. 23 assists from the position this year alone. All with a modest player who really isn't a world beater.

Attack duty is simple, I want the role to be arriving late to be a threat at the back post if the other side has overloaded the opposition. Then he needs to be direct and decisive. People may question a lack of player instructions but simply put there not needed as the role and duty cover it all. Stay wider not effective as we want him coming narrow later in attack so makes no sense even if it would help with stretching play.

edca1f5facf74ea2d52c1961d653a298.pngTonnessen 2025

162ec3d978cad96ffdb6d6f1b535e13b.pngTonnessen league stats

Like I said a modest player he has some great attributes and personality but of course he has grown in the 6 seasons I have had him at the club. Bought for 200k originally as backup but after watching his performances and attacking prowess he ended up nailing down the first choice slot. He has been named in the Norwegian team of the year 4 seasons running. That’s not just the league that’s all-Norwegian players, somehow, he has never been capped for Norway.

His numbers are remarkable, keep in mind these are only the league stats they don’t consider cups, or continental games. A true hidden gem that has flourished in a system that gives him the ability to express himself.

RWB Wing-Back (support)

The two to the throw, this man is responsible for helping in build-up play and stretching the game as wide as possible hence the player instruction stay wider. although his main role is to overload and draw opponents into his area, he still is more than adept at getting a goal himself as well as setting up an abundance of them. Similar to the opposite side the numbers here are scary, due to the fact some teams don’t fall into the overload and he often out number them on his flank allowing him time to pick the perfect ball. Its key here that he has good first touch, composure, dribbling, and balance allowing him to help hold onto the ball in tight areas.

The support duty allows him to be more cautious and look to hold onto the ball more that’s not to say he won’t cross the ball when the opportunity arises, he is at the end of the day a wing back, so he still likes to get the chalk on his boots and regular hits his counterpart at the back post.

95a51fd2e6ea3197184bfc5458b17033.pngEngine room setup roles & duties

LCM Central Midfielder (defend)

The unsung hero of the team, this man is responsible for doing all the dirty work to allow other to flourish. He is the counterbalance for allowing the roaming playmaker to go and influence the game in any which way he wants, he is also there to cover for an adventurous RWB. His work majorly goes unnoticed, breaking up play, covering wide to delay opponents attacks, simple passes to keep the game moving makes him an especially important cog in the machine. I don’t need a fancy role here keeping it simply makes it even more effective.

The defend duty is essential, anything else would create carnage with the balance of the team, as this allows him to hold his position unless it’s totally risk free for him to advance behind play. I have some really good examples of how crucial his role is and ill visit them later in the post.

RCM Roaming Playmaker (support)

The creative hub of the whole tactic, there isn’t anything that doesn’t go through him. sets the tempo of the game and when he plays well the team plays well. It takes a special player to play the role due to its demands but when the right man is found it really does pay off. Roaming was picked over the two more standard of playmakers due to the fact I want him having that sort of Kevin de bruyne effect where he pulls wide and crosses or he pops up on the other side arriving late to clip a ball into the box. It’s all to help with the play becoming less predictable and adding variation to the type of moves created. When the time is right and its on the more direct passing instructions along with the player trait plays killer balls helps make the RPM a lethal weapon, with switches off play in behind full backs or defence splitting passes in behind. 

Support duty is the only one available but even if there was another option it would be support as I look for him to have a great effect on all areas of the game, build up, attack and transitioning between the two.

5350790843ba8b6678a645e88b455ebf.pngFront three setup roles & duties

AMC Shadow Striker (attack)

A role that came to light in the very first edition of the tactic and became one of the most successful roles I have used. He gets goals and assists regularly. The key ingredient is the fact him and the DLF interchange nicely and free space up for each other. The shadow striker essentially becomes the runner from deep in the whole setup and attacks the space vacated by the DLF who is drifting towards the ball and overload. it’s the first time I have used the role and its really has changed the way I look at the movement of my strikers. He is also a good fit in defence for my kind of block, he will often be one of the first men to press the midfield as the poacher doesn’t track back much.

The attack duty is the only option which on course gives him the direct edge and sets about his penetrating runs into the box late. He doesn’t require any adjustments to player instructions due to the fact he is already such a specialist role that gives all that is required.

RCF Deep Lying Forward (support)

The link man, dropping into midfield or drifting wide due to his added player instruction stay wider, usually he becomes the extra man in the overload that allows the team to play through that side. In Rasmussen I have a technically gifted player in the role who is an expert in holding the ball in tight situations and is also capable of playing his way out of it with his flair and creativity, while also being capable of the spectacular. Although seen as a creative type who links the overload and the attack to midfield, he has scored a good number of goals as well. The main reason I did go for the role was its movement, dropping into pockets of space and drawing defenders away, like I said a great partner to the shadow striker which becomes what I call my rotational attack when they both swap and take each other’s spaces. It’s a joy to watch and one of my favourite aspects of the tactic.

The support duty is the ideal choice, I want him to be dropping deep with and without the ball along with him getting involved in overloading the right-hand side of the pitch. Due to the technical ability of the player, I only add stay wide to his game and allow the default settings of the role to dedicate the rest of it. I don’t want to limit him to much as he does have the unexpected in the locker.

LCF Poacher (attack)

The pest is how I refer to this role, just hanging onto the backs off centre backs or playing in between them and generally just being a menace. Of course, he is the main focal point for attacking the space in behind, but I have added move into channels so that he will occasional drifted between the CB and Fullback. This in turn helps with the exploit side of the pitch as it can help in out numbering the fullback as the wing back gets further forward often leaving the opponents full back in a predicament of who to pick up, he leaves the poacher he runs on the blind side of the CB, if he takes the Poacher, he leaves the wing back 1v1 with usually an attacking midfielder.

Attack again is the only option and of course makes total sense. Direct aggressive runs, shots on goal and in defence he is the one play who isn’t involved in dropping deep to form part of the block. I want him to be the first option to attack the space in behind if the ball is turned over and to catch the opposition out of position. I call this my transitional attack when we win the ball back and quickly hit the direct ball in behind for the poacher there for catching the team as the transition.

In Game Tweaks

233d19e92373131cafcac4935874208e.pngDefensive tweak final Odd ball

The first big in game tweak is a defensive one. The change here is when I feel I am being overrun down the flanks or when I come up against a 442. The switch to forcing the opponent inside is to try and help defending the flanks better, along with switching the duties of the back three, to either man mark the two strikers or in other cases to press the wide forwards. not a major change but one I have seen myself employ in specific situations a bit like the Milan game the previous season in the 343 shape. Same idea different tactic.

d11cd00bae4f544f7620ccfac44ca8cf.pngAttacking tweak final Odd ball

This tweak is for when I notice a team sitting even higher and they are dominating possession and territory. The idea behind it is being more direct when the ball is won back, pass into pace and direct passing added aims to create more of those killer balls in behind. The line of engagement is lowered even more to encourage the already high back line to overcommit even further into our now highly dense block with the chance of counters in behind increasing when the ball is won back. On the flip side it can also be used against teams who park the bus as it helps draw them out of the deep shape and can provide an option to break the stubborn defence.

Of course, I also have the other two systems to switch to if needed and like any good overload tactic I have a mirrored version of this to switch the side off overload and exploit.

Build Summary

I hope that covers everything in terms of the building of the tactic. I covered the set plays in an earlier post and there is very little change to them. I’ll show them more when I explore the in game examples of how it played out. I hope is clear to see the game plan and how I went about building it to make it happen. In defence I look compress play and make it hard to play through. In build-up I look to play out from the back and overload the right side drawing the opponent out and then exploit the left. I also look to win the ball back and then attack quickly in the transition.

Analyst report

adb866213d92bb778e00e4ea3f9c3aa4.pngAnalysts report goals

11841da0b63a5981b7117b64e5620ad2.pngAnalysts report assists

The team now know for early goals rather than late ones, trying to catch the opponent early on before they have found their rhythm and shape makes the plan more effective off catching them out of shape. If I play weaker teams, I have found myself maxing out tempo so that the pace of the game is incredible from the start.

A slight indication of the exploit side scoring a couple more goals than the overload side, them being closer together is actually a good thing as now the overload side is actually gaining goals as teams are worried about the exploit side of our game. Placed shots are still our main source of goal types, mainly as most of our goals come from one-on-one situations after breaking in behind. Headers is another high number, but this is mainly from our great set play routines.

Onto assists and that word variety comes into play again, there is now a great balance when it comes to assist locations and types. All areas of the pitch are capable of producing goals from their own little cog in the attacking system. That could be a through ball in behind from the middle of the pitch, a cross from the overload side to the exploit side after drawing the team in, or cross from the exploit side as he has acres of space and time to pick it. The set plays are even balanced as corners and freekicks provide similar numbers all in all its does point out that it is now more than ever hard to predict the attacking play of my side.

In Game Examples

Lots of graphics here they may take a little time to load but i can assure you if you have read this for its worth it. ill break the examples down it sections to keep everything neat and tidy.

Counter Attacking

From the opponents throw inside our half, Marking is tight everyone is back , except for the poacher (19). In his usual thinking he has taken up and area in which he can attack the space if the ball is turned over, with only two opponents deeper than him and one dragged wide he is virtually left 1v1.

74ff89ff818fc89f7bdbc2ccf655afd8.jpgHaugensund vs Odd counter

f0622f07e8cf8c6b974f5db197023246.gifHaugensund vs Odd counter

The marking pays off as the SS wins the ball, laying to the DLF who drops it off to the RWB the interchange is completed when the RPM receives the ball and gives it back to the SS in space. All the time while this small, short passing has taken place the poacher has started his run and now finds himself on the last man in the channel between full back and centre back, the ideal place for him to punish.

fa7b49decaca8b6ad784ed9734795b42.gifHaugensund vs Odd counter

The shadow striker hits an exquisite ball in behind the defence and the poacher round through and calmly slots hope, within 5 passes the ball is went from my half into the back of the net. Lovely direct counterattack catching the opponent with acres of space in behind.

6d2763aa0f0ecba702a6b35a2ffc8ccc.jpgKristiansund vs Odd counter

Here is the first image of us beginning to transition into our deeper defensive shape. The CM(D) number 6 has taken to cover in front of the CBS as he is aware of the LWB advancing to press the ball carrier. In pressing the next clip, you will see how the opponent has now been forced wide.

5fa99707e966edae6297fbc36d929054.jpgKristiansund vs Odd counter

The shadow striker is aggressively pressing now forcing the wing back down the line where 3 odd players are situated with cover. The shape is stable and there are no real concerns even if play is switched, I have adept players covering the opposite flank. The poacher is lingering on the last man 1v1 with acres of space to attack if the ball is turned over with the DLF starting to drop into our half.

15a80481051a969cfae395ed3e757ff6.jpgKristiansund vs Odd counter

As the ball is worked inside the deep shape is now perfect, the CM(D) ready to apply pressure, the back line is neat and compact with all serious threats man marked. Just take a look around as the DLF and Poacher have now taken up prime positions for launching a lethal counter attack if the ball can be won back.

dd8bf0181cf2d8279799acf28dee7c07.gifKristiansund vs Odd counter

As the ball now comes narrow so does our defensive shape and the aggressive deep press take another go at winning the ball back, there is no alarm bells ringing even when Kristiansund knock it around nicely the aggressive pressing doesn’t allow much time or space the one chance they do have to get in behind the pass is well read and Sandberg clears, throughout this whole passage the DLF has lurked for scraps and the poacher has bided his time on the last man….

a7274f3b14b9097514d8b73ccae74c3c.gifKristiansund vs Odd counter

They are rewarded for their patience, The DLF latches onto the ball and switches a fantastic pass in behind the defence, the poacher has drifted on the blind side to the channel and runs onto the pass and lift the ball over the keepers head, this time in two passes from deep inside our half the ball is in the back off the net. A thing of beauty in my quest to implement this in my game plan. The space in behind from the opponent overcommitting there back line and leaving our poacher 1v1 is exploited.

a9d01886d8f42143b307c6c3ea99275a.gifOdd vs Haugensund 2 counter

In this clip you can see a few key factors from our play, this nice covering position of number 6 my CM(D), then the quick transition from defence back into attack as the RWB plays a lovely ball in behind to the poacher who has yet again has peeled off and broke the line in behind. I have some more reading on Aga later in the post but think it’s clear to see the pattern emerging from the master poacher.

c6b4d2142df49303c4850dce7bd40ed9.gifOdd vs Haugensund 2 counter

Another fine example of the CMD doing some lovely covering, wins the ball back then a simple lay off into the CD to secure possession. like I said earlier nothing fancy but absolutely essential if the team is team is to keep balance. Had this been a support role he more than likely would have been caught ahead of play.

503a6a6fba559efb08e76c3dd66107f7.gifOdd vs Haugensund 2 counter

Now in 3D, you can see how his intelligent positioning starts off the move as he wins the ball back, the RPM gets the recycled ball and pings a pinpoint precision pass in behind to yes you guessed it Oscar Aga who’s movement timed to perfections sees him in behind and he again slots it home. Defence to attack in a matter of seconds giving our opponent no time to settle into a shape. Quick transitions with a killer ball.

43ef666a1e9aa5438c6581828abd3a65.jpgOdd vs Ranheim counter

The perfect overhead view to show of our high, narrow compressed block. The two white lines help show how narrow and compact the shape is, of course the poacher isn't included he takes up his usual position and waits to pounce on any space in behind after turnovers. There is no easy pass for the ball carrier, DLF has tracked DM, SS has blocked the square ball into the middle, And the CMS have blocked the AMC and striker. Even the switch is well covered as the team has the LWB and LCB who can easily shuffle over if need be.

1dae8ceee76ffd946b45abb634345845.gifOdd vs Ranheim counter

The opponent goes for the switch due to there being nothing else on, its a risky pass and the LWB reads it and instantly the attack is on, striding forward then playing a great ball in behind for the poacher who as per has pulled on the shoulder is through on goal. A superb finish into the far corner to finish off a truly devastating counterattack. which stems form having a great defensive shape and players positioned well to take advantage of space when turnovers happen.

20a6476f52f9be70328540e014ec9568.jpgOdd vs Ranheim counter

After playing down our left it breaks down after a poor ball into the box, it leaves our CM(D) out of position and with the RPM still central but higher than the space in front of the defence there is a chance for Ranheim to break on us. their midfield is deep however so they will need to transition quickly to catch us.

80fc114f41c47beb51d2019e523d00cb.gifOdd vs Ranheim counter

The ball is knocked down to their midfielder who sends ball straight into the striker, the counter appears to be on, our shape is disjointed however, the stopper has other ideas. He steps up and presses the striker delaying him slightly and allowing time for our CMD (6) to transition back into his position. It’s exactly the reason why the stopper was my choice of role here he just does enough to stifle a quick counter when the midfield is caught. 

5e52af001c738c429e4b82ed9e1bd04e.gifOdd vs Ranheim counter

Now with the team almost transitioned back into the defensive shape thanks to the delay, the shadow striker tracks back in and wins the ball back from the CM. He runs straight at the heart of the Ranheim defence skipping past a player then plying a neat one-two with the poacher he is released in behind and provides a great finish. From the stopper delaying the counterattack and allowing the shadow striker to get back in, to the direct attacking transitions and ball in behind its another great example of our superb counter attacking qualities that again comes from or defensive organisations and players ready to pounce.

Overloads & Exploits

436c9e4962df21115bda25bbc3cbd5cb.jpgOdd vs Bryne overload

This is by far one of my favourite examples of how the overloads work within my system. Within the white square you can see my, RCB, RWB (on ball), DLF, SS and RPM, five off my players who have all been tasked with this job. The shadow striker (14) is positioned to join in with attacking the space in behind with the highlighted poacher who is 1v2 at the minute, but what this does is leaves the LWB with plenty space to attack. More crucial in the white square is Bryne have committed six players to my overload which is the desired plan.

f194372fde4c0012ce836011b35eeb62.gifOdd vs Bryne overload

Textbook overload working, this kind of thing makes all the effort of building the tactic and team over seven seasons worth it. The ball from the BPD into the CMD opens up the play, he lays into the shadow striker, who turns it around the corner into the advancing LWB who has been left unmarked he takes a touch to shift the ball away from the pressing player and fires into the corner, deadly move, worked through the gears at the right time to up the tempo and catch the opponent sleeping on the opposite side of the pitch.

1ccde9e8da140f24d9dbfc84abc2270d.jpgStart v Odd overload

My second favourite example, It’s the same makeup as the last one but for one small change, our CD(S) has joined in the black square so, now the opponent is outnumbered this time around. The poacher and LWB are both 1v1 with the space for them to attack. Still in the early stages of the overload being built so the SS is rather deeper than last time along with the CMD who is being wary of the counter threat.

9551cba884db5a5eb39ce5bc999f3a3a.jpgStart vs Odd overload

Now as the play has progressed the Shadow striker has started to advance and make his way to become a 3rd man runner in attacking the space in behind. The DLF now on the ball is central to the overload holding on the ball and trying to draw defenders into him. however, the opposition hasn’t fallen into the overload as such they still have decent cover and shape and don’t appear to be panicking.

f5ebd74c3115b797288822b7f500a387.jpgStart vs Odd Overload

The play has advanced and although the opposition never got dragged fully into the overload, they have now paid the ultimate price as now there 1v1 right across the back and the RWB is goal side of his man and has space to attack......6e55ef15a4172cce5f54acb1ad65b28f.gifStart vs Odd overload

I am not going to describe this one for you simply let you enjoy watching it, this is more an example of the overload working when the opponent doesn’t match the numbers or cover it properly, there is no need to try exploit as the damage is done through the overload. The clip in fact had to be cut short to show the full extent of the build-up within the overload hence why I used so many screenshots.

d9f85f3c5669f2eda0e804b5334dca55.jpgSuduva vs Odd overload

The final overload example has a good element of playing out from the back which will lead on nicely to the next section of examples. This is our shape from goal kicks, the back three is spread due to the play out of defence instruction, the CMD has dropped to offer himself as an easy passing option, and the wing backs are stretching the play.  The Shadow striker has space due to the fact the RPM seems to be receiving some special attention. This gives the keeper a variety of options.

82d3c1328013210a353f846c2b7c8e4e.gifSuduva vs Odd overload

The keeper decided the short option is best, the ball is the spread to the RWB, This triggers the DLF, SS, RPM and RCB to begin there movements into the overload side.

01d438aa0b8376dbf2bd88b2323653c9.gifSuduva vs Odd overload
A couple of nice one-two's between the RPM and RWB along with the movements of the DLF and SS allows the opponent to be dragged over to the overload side, the poacher has now moved into the channel and is playing on the fullback this in turn leaves the LWB unmarked and with a huge gap for him to attack, the RPM switches into the Poacher...

61f003a8c3f46dae11621582fa64dbab.gifSuduva vs Odd overload

The poacher has now dragged the full back further out of position, he lays the ball into the LWB who is completely free, who whips a spectacular ball into the box which is met by the DLF on the volley. From building at the back and drawing the opposition in, to then switching the tempo and going for the killer ball to the exploit side where the space is in an abundance to a beautiful delivery and finish. It’s all the key aspects of my well thought out alternative route to goal. This and the counter attacking strategy worked nicely side by side and give real variety and its so pleasing to watch them come off.

Playing Out From Defence

Key thing I want to show you here is how varied the build up can be from each attack, from the goalkeepers distributions to which side is attacked down, and what kind of movements and how direct or patient the play is. As I have went on variety, I will look to give some clear examples off it and how the team transitions' from defence to attack and through the build up phases.

57662fc6156495b30cbc4180d270cea6.jpgOdd vs Fredrikstad build up

The shape from the goal kick is very much our standard build up shape, several players all on different lines and the wide men stretching the play. The CMD drops in which gives us a sort of 2-2-3-3 shape from the keepers kick.

413b9a242e1ac96cb2dc57c9b096aec3.gifOdd vs Fredrikstad build up

On this occasion keeper opts to play to the RWB, instantly the players expected to overload shift into the area, the RCB backs up play, the RPM drops to an area to get on the ball, the Shadow striker faints to come short then switches into the space the DLF has left as he makes his way wide to get onto the ball. A nice 4 pass combinations between the three players now have the RWB 1v1 against the full back. Quick tempo passing and off the ball movements looks to have unlocked the defence.

50cd133ccdc255ab2561bad8bcccdbec.gifOdd vs Fredrikstad build up

The play has now progressed to the final third, but the combination continues, nice passing and movement from the RWB, RPM and DLF drags the defence around their own box, this has allowed the shadow striker, poacher and LWB all to be left 1v1 in the six-yard box. I ball lifted to the back post from the RWB picks out his counterpart on the far side who rises above his man to head home. A great move down the right-hand side started from the keeper and finished by the left wing back.

7980363606c75e6bbb1522867ee88ee7.jpgFredrikstad vs Odd build up (2)
Funnily enough the next example comes from the reverse fixture. This time the ball has been rolled back to the keeper from the RWB after blocking the opponents attack down our right-hand side. The shape is more or less the same apart from the team is deeper as it transitions from defence to attack. The wide men are yet to stretch play and the RPM is deeper.

2cca3ddb630605ccb90b6700da8e1fbd.gifFredrikstad vs Odd build up (2)

The keeper and both BPD's exchange passes, which allows the team time to transition into its full build up shape, Now the wing backs are stretching play, the CMD is now the more advanced of the midfield two and it’s the RPM who has dropped to get on the ball. The BPD knocks it wide to the RWB who draws a press then slips it inside to the RPM the team is now ready to increase the tempo and look to go more direct, the DLF is already dropping in the last moments off the clip to make space.

4090c3c595a35467a8a8545bd72f2da0.gifFredrikstad vs Odd build up (2)

Pay close attention to the movements of the DLF (10) and SS (7), as play progresses towards the final third the DLF drifts deep and then wide to get on the ball which leaves space for the SS to attack. The SS gets on the ball but, quickly lays it off then bursts directly forward and attacks the space vacated from the DLF movement.

The team has progressed the ball and transitioned from its deep shape into its high line and is now ready to sustain a period of attacking play as the ball is played back to the BPD the second phase of attack can begin after failing to exploit the opponents space behind.

2e12dc367ddbefb66d47a77fe8be7bb9.gifFredrikstad vs Odd build up (2)

A direct pass from the BPD into the CMD who fires out wide to the RWB this shifts the pace of the attack once again. The RPM & DLF move towards the ball its quickly played to the RPM and he slides the ball through for the SS who has run in behind of the space of the DLF. Its laid back off to the wing-back who crosses to find the SS who has drifted to the back post he beats his man with his first touch and slots home. Two different attacking phases, and the pace was changed twice, once to try catch the opponent in transition then again after the opponent had transitioned back into its defensive shape. The SS and DLF movement playing a key role in the ball ending up in the back of the net.

d3870278120898d688e4e41708b97bfd.gifOdd vs Tromso build up

a43076d34cc5890da3aa3802f9ede7c4.jpgOdd vs Tromso build up

The keeper fires out to the left this time around. Key thing to watch here is how the overload is differently worked on this side. There is a nice interchange of short passes between the CMD, BPD and CDS it doesn’t draw to much attention but what it does draws enough attention to allow the left wing back to fly down the line, poacher moves into the channel which gives their full back a serious problem as he is now 1v2.

037faf809f351371a22080398ad38d38.gifOdd vs Tromso build up

The BPD pings a great ball over the top of the full back for my wing back to latch onto, he comes inside his man, to link with the poacher. whose movement deep has sent his man marker in a spin who is now ball watching, the poacher runs in behind to be slipped in behind from the LWB and Tjåland doesn’t miss those. A great example to show the contrast from the right-hand side of the attack. There isn’t a major movement to the side, its more about the attacking nature of the overlapping wing back and the moving to channels of the poacher that causes the big problem off outnumbering the fullback and then the fact BPD has the ability to pick such a pass out.

2dd1af894e0094edc56c29c62f9f361c.gifSecond Odd v Tromso build up

Great example of some nice deep passing across the back line, at a nice tempo trying to draw the opposition into a high press. The play is then switched from the keeper as the opponent won’t commit more than two players to really pressing us. Now the plan has become more direct, and the wing back has chance to run at his marker.

83b60b3b7cdcfe659aabf00b472b10d6.gifSecond Odd v Tromso build up

The pace of the attack now becomes lightning quick the LWB commits his man before playing into the DLF's feet who lays off to the on-rushing shadow striker who runs at the defence. A floated cross, a knock down and finish combination from poacher and DLF is second instance of phenomenal link up play in this one passage of play. The deep passing drawing the opponent out never triggered a press to create chance in behind, so a more calculated but still direct approach had to be utilised and through clever passing and movement comes off nicely.

05147ccef208ec83e70681c7dd95a82c.jpgSuduva v Odd build up

Nice example of our deep defensive shape, narrow and compact only players out with is the LWB who is pressing the ball and the poacher who waits for his time to strike. The RWB has allowed space for their LWB but if a switch is made, he is free to instantly press the player due to being spare. The compression in the block denies any real space between the lines which is highlighted by how close my players are to theirs all highlighted in green.

Am showing this image to allow you to get an idea of how the transition from defence to attack is played out, am still classing it as build up play but feel its key to highlight the shape before doing so.

91e52190b824c57b086ea3d09f28bdad.gifSuduva v Odd build up

The cross is won and headed to the wingback, pass into the CMD triggers a burst up the pitch which allows the defence line to advance and transition into our higher pressing shape. it’s a dead end so the ball is played back into the BPD but, now the team is advanced and transition fully into its attacking shape and is ready to now build play a second time after the counter was blocked off.

65798caf2eee8cb7a43e0abb94eabb77.gifSuduva v Odd build up
The BPD shows another example of his ability to pick a killer ball in behind the fullback, the wing back times his run to perfection and hits the byline, his cross is delightful and picks out the DLF who accepts his invitation and heads home.  A simple build up from defence transitioning quickly into our attacking shape and then a direct ball in behind turns the opponent and leads to a fine goal. Again, it shows the variety in our play as it’s so much more direct than the right hand side which is more complex with its movement and passing options.

 

The last example of variety in build up play is the reason I never limit my goalkeeper to his passing options....

964428fb68b574e2634a24e685a2eac8.gifValerenga v Odd build up

Keeper - Poacher - Deep lying forward - Shadow striker - back off the net! Simple but highly effective, completely bypassing the higher press of the opponent, swift link up plays and an incredible finish. of course, not every long ball pays off even just once a season, but the fact it can means it’s worth allowing your keeper that freedom, this was a tight game, I couldn’t break the press with overloads and in the end the direct ball from the keeper won me the game.

3d26710628aba9aebf95c8edc28c73ba.gifOdd v Lillestrøm build up

Well maybe it happens twice a season......... Simply not restricting my keeper has gave me two great direct goals. Overkill of instructions is one of the biggest faults of so many tactics so choose wisely.

Attacking Set Plays

I covered set plays earlier in the post, but I would like to highlight the thrown ins and some more corners before wrapping the final episode up. Just to show that it is really worth the time setting them up. To the point my board actually started making my philosophy to make the use of set plays.

864b0b9fccf4f7cf8cfa537ecc7d41de.jpgHaugensund v Odd short throw

5e60b4f5b8e95a9490e9a4ada2721a58.gifHaugensund v Odd  throw in

The RPM and DLF are set to come short, with their neat exchange of passing and movement it frees up the DLF to pick a lovely ball out to the LWB at the far post. The LWB, Poacher and Shadow striker are set to go forward with the idea that they will overload the box and eventually be left 1v1. It pays off and again makes the time and effort that is put into the set plays worthwhile.

fbce9740cb3f047347aabec05108c86e.jpgOdd v Suduva throw in

419b4b5096d97cd008ef687fc120328e.gifOdd v Suduva throw in

Same idea but the opposite side, and the main difference being the poacher and the CMD are asked to come short. I prefer to use the players on the side of the pitch rather than making it role specific. The main reason is if the ball is lost its easier for them to transition back into their usual shape, rather than having to cross the side of the pitch. Worked slightly different here as it’s a simpler throw lay off and cross but the end result of having the wing back unmarked at the far post works wonders. It really all still stems for the overload and exploit idea. Looking to get players 1v1 in attacking situations.

a004eacb11220c92971a64f65d3323bb.gifStabaek v Odd throw in

Here is a identical throw in a separate game, its no fluke its a well thought out plan that has my core principle of overload and exploit to it

79400abb597f7bc993eb671eafc1d710.gifRosenborg v Odd throw in

From deeper this time around, But same setup. The DLF receives it and rolls into the RPM who clips and incredible ball over the top for the shadow striker to hammer home. Again, in a very tight game in a top of the table clash against Rosenberg. The game would have been lost had I not made the effort to set my throws up. Of course, this has an element of my general play as its from deeper, but it comes from setting the players in the right areas as well.

510dbe60de67683763d626f94d5c1010.gif AEK v Odd throw in

Another example of a deeper ploy coming off, again it has an element of my general play as the RPM hits the direct killer ball into the poacher in behind. But again, rather than just having the default ones where more than likely the front 3 would all be set to go forward a small tweak has given me a little edge.

b69db8e9f3430251a2f337740996eb51.jpgOdd v Lillestrøm corner

9f05e48644f733bfb12e5f3107dca9f8.gifOdd v Lillestrøm corner

I spoke on the earlier post about always having someone attack the far post if I aim near post, this here is the exact reason. The poacher getting on the end of the flick on and with him getting goal side of his man it’s a simple tap in for him. Again, it doesn’t happen every corner but setting it up gives you a chance if you don’t set it then you limit yourself.

2829b91afe8f25ce7927b06c9ab49752.gif Odd v Juventus corner

Our most famous victory in Europe, there has been some big ones. but 3-0 against juve tops them. Near post corner playing its part in the clubs most historic result.

7ad0b77be633cfaba75d81407bffe15c.gifThe goal that won the Cupen

Set play delivers the Cupen.....

Goal Of The Season

2ca952ac3fdcf1564dfd8e95fe5926f3.gifTromso v Odd goal of season

Ill simply leave you to enjoy this one...

Results

544c0111e826e432f1fe9d3723fb06e3.png

e7569740bc496677fc864eddab9aa9f4.pngFinal League table 

Famous treble and with it a 4th league title in a row. 11 goals conceded and only one game lost with 55 scored. The perfect balance has been achieved.

03d46d383d39b6b796a91fdbbb84a995.pngChampions league table

it however was a poor champions league campaign mainly because I focused my attention on the domestic season to leave a legacy at the club. Champions league was never winnable at this stage. Although I did take a huge scalp in Juventus.

I will add the career update now for people who have more interest in reading through more details results and the story of my manager and how he loved clean sheets but then needed to attack then found the balance, how he lost his star player but railed round and re built his squad. there is snippets of tactics as well.

 

Conclusion

I’m sorry this last episode took so long, it wanted to make sure I got it right and with work being busy these things happen. I hope I done the tactic justice in my writing and how I delivered the system. Thanks as always for any input from anyone. Whether it be reading or commenting or purely just having a glance at it. I feel I managed to create a good brand of football that gave me the perfect balance and enough variety to keep my opponents guessing. I would have loved to carry my Odd story on, but I felt with a treble and a great tactic it’s time to bow out and start a new challenge and style of play.

Many Thanks SixPointer

Edited by SixPointer
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23 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

its purely just my view of how to play and how I make it work for me.

this always is a guarantee for haveing fun in the long term with FM. GL on your next save :-)

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1 hour ago, warlock said:

:applause: Great explanation!

 

1 hour ago, CARRERA said:

this always is a guarantee for haveing fun in the long term with FM. GL on your next save :-)

Thanks very much really appreciate the feedback 

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  • SixPointer changed the title to A Simple Build, Evolution Leading to Success, Back Three Special, treble winners (series complete)

Fantastic write up, thoroughly enjoyed it! :thup:

19 hours ago, SixPointer said:

When building my roles and duties one of the most important things I feel is knowing each role individual mentality, it helps immensely for me to get an idea of the balance of the side. Whether I am looking for total balance throughout system or one side to be more attacking than the other or to create overloaded areas.

Fully agree with this, I feel individual mentalities deserve better visual representation. For how important they are when it comes to understanding player's behaviour, they're currently way too hidden away; one has to either keep clicking the PI menu or know them from memory, which can make it hard for inexperienced players to picture their system. An in-game overview looking like your screenshot would be lovely.

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Great stuff as always @SixPointer.   Love the depth - it took me a few sittings to get through this last post! Very interesting to see the progression from the mid/low block, counter tactic to the more aggressive tactic of a top team - all with quick transitions and fast play. 

One thing I plan on playing around with after this is using different mentalities for the wing backs in a 3atb system.  I think it's a hangover from my 4atb tactics, but I like symmetry in the backline.  With the defensive support of 3atb, I'm wondering if having one be a bit more attacking (with a corresponding reduction in mentality/role in the midfield) might add a different dimension...

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1 hour ago, Zemahh said:

Fantastic write up, thoroughly enjoyed it! :thup:

Fully agree with this, I feel individual mentalities deserve better visual representation. For how important they are when it comes to understanding player's behaviour, they're currently way too hidden away; one has to either keep clicking the PI menu or know them from memory, which can make it hard for inexperienced players to picture their system. An in-game overview looking like your screenshot would be lovely.

Thanks am glad you enjoyed it! Yeah I totally agree it doesn’t get much airtime on the forums. Well it does but not as much as I would expect. 

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1 hour ago, 13th Man said:

Great stuff as always @SixPointer.   Love the depth - it took me a few sittings to get through this last post! Very interesting to see the progression from the mid/low block, counter tactic to the more aggressive tactic of a top team - all with quick transitions and fast play. 

One thing I plan on playing around with after this is using different mentalities for the wing backs in a 3atb system.  I think it's a hangover from my 4atb tactics, but I like symmetry in the backline.  With the defensive support of 3atb, I'm wondering if having one be a bit more attacking (with a corresponding reduction in mentality/role in the midfield) might add a different dimension...

Thanks as always for your support!  Yeah the length of the last episode was huge I tried to trim it down as I know it can be a pain to read. But I wanted as much info as possible and if people want to learn about the system then they will read it was my final thought. 
give the wing back being different a try. I find 3 at the back gives a solid enough base to allow more adventure but I always have my balancing act hence why I have the CM(d) in there to cover for the attacking wing back. 

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

Thanks as always for your support!  Yeah the length of the last episode was huge I tried to trim it down as I know it can be a pain to read. But I wanted as much info as possible and if people want to learn about the system then they will read it was my final thought. 
give the wing back being different a try. I find 3 at the back gives a solid enough base to allow more adventure but I always have my balancing act hence why I have the CM(d) in there to cover for the attacking wing back. 

Don't worry - I liked the length.  I think you and I want our teams to play very similarly, but we go about it a bit differently so it's great to see in depth thinking on other ways to set up.  I do think I'll be trying to send one of my wingbacks forward.  If nothing else, it'll give the team something different, and I have a new wingback that can challenge very well in the air for those far-post crosses!

Also - I think I'll be trying out the central CB as a stopper too.  I went away from ever using it when using the wide back 3 and defensive wingers, but now that I've pulled them back to WBs most of the time, I might be able to pull in the outside CBs and push the central up a bit to stop the attacks through the center.

Edited by 13th Man
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10 hours ago, 13th Man said:

Don't worry - I liked the length.  I think you and I want our teams to play very similarly, but we go about it a bit differently so it's great to see in depth thinking on other ways to set up.  I do think I'll be trying to send one of my wingbacks forward.  If nothing else, it'll give the team something different, and I have a new wingback that can challenge very well in the air for those far-post crosses!

Also - I think I'll be trying out the central CB as a stopper too.  I went away from ever using it when using the wide back 3 and defensive wingers, but now that I've pulled them back to WBs most of the time, I might be able to pull in the outside CBs and push the central up a bit to stop the attacks through the center.

Im Glad I have given you some ideas. This is what the post is all about! Hoping to spark ideas and give people a different view of their systems 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Love the thread!  However, I can't find the analyst report to show where assists come from?  Can you point me to that?  Do I need a specific skin?

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19 minutes ago, gcoard said:

Love the thread!  However, I can't find the analyst report to show where assists come from?  Can you point me to that?  Do I need a specific skin?

Glad you liked it I appreciate the support 

 

You don’t need a specific skin. It’s standard with the game. 
 

Click on team report 

then analyst report 

then on the scoring tab

And on the right of the screen you will see goals and assist locations etc 

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4 minutes ago, SixPointer said:

Click on team report 

then analyst report 

then on the scoring tab

And on the right of the screen you will see goals and assist locations etc 

So like the one place I didn't look... Thanks!

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