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Higher Tempo is better for most teams

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I have been tinkering with my 4231 system that is primarily a winger based system with wingers pulling the FBs and making space for my poacher. In addition to which i have an AP/AM and a Mezzala looking for penetrative passes to either of the front three. Ideally overloading left side of the pitch to open up chances on the right side. I have been trying multiple mentalities and playing styles by adjusting the passing directness and tempo. 

What i noticed among almost a season long of multiple competition and different level of teams is kind of simple yet very strange to believe for some reason. I noticed that whenever i played with a higher tempo i not just scored more goals but also conceded less. Now, at first i was a bit confused as moving the ball with not the best of burnley team does not make sense as they would more often than not lose the ball in transition to a lot of teams. However, When i got the chance to think about it, It started to make more sense. As you can see when i played with a slower tempo against fulham which is far worse of a team than mine i ended up giving far more quality chances that i would have liked and a key factor to note is the amount of highlights they were getting throughout the match.

However, In the very next match i grinded a 1-0 win against southampton, which is far better than fulham in my current save and had better odds of winning than us before the match. They even had barely any highlights throughout the match. It became a little evident that higher tempo kind of gives you the ability to move the ball and hence allows the players to not dwell on the ball too much which could end up in a tackle and lost possession. As a result i started employing a higher tempo to my tactic regularly and more often than not it worked in the sense that it just didnt allow me to keep a little more clean sheets but also allow me a chance to break down teams that are parking the bus. I used to be vary of not going too high on the tempo fearing that it might break my tactic but realised that it kind of solved a lot of problems for me and not just against worse teams but it also gave me a chance against much better teams to grind out a result.

I can partly credit this to the low composure rating of my team that we are unable to play any good on a low tempo as we are below average in the league for composure.  As a result we are not good at keeping the ball and get turnovers whenever a player keeps the ball for too long.

What are your experiences with High Tempo??


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In theory; top heavy formations are more suited to attacking football and I love that theory. I use higher tempo for top heavy formations. Plus; I know my advanced players are already in good places and they don't need to slow things for other players if I set midfield and attack with suited combinations. So I prefer to use higher tempo TIs for formations like 3-4-1-2 / 3-4-2-1 / 3-4-3 flat / 4-2-3-1 / 4-2-4, etc.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Depending on the other settings, higher tempo can be less risky than low tempo, simply because in a quick buildup the defenders and deeper players dont leave their zones as much, giving up less space to be exploited.

Unless you’re Liverpool but then their fullbacks don’t really start as typical FM fullbacks. They are much closer to the wingers when an attack is initiated.

Edited by afailed10
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