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FM21 Inside forwards+ Inverted Wingers


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Ive had a long career in FM21 where I employed a wingerless formation (4132 DM narrow). However, I started on a new career (dont have FM22) and landed with a club that had the personal for a standard 4231 gegenpress. So I used the main template and made some minor adjustments. First season went really well, but I was mainly carried by a amazing striker and good midfield/defense. The ratings for my wingers was always worrisome, no matter who I used. 2nd season I see the same pattern, except as you probably guessed the striker isnt in the same vein of form and my midfield isnt at his best often either.

My biggest concerns are again my wingers, as I invested the heaviest for them. My question is basicly, what do I need to make them shine, or at least, not be absolute garbage? There are matches where I see endratings of 6.1/6.2, and often a 6.4 after even 15 minutes. I look at the statistics, but nothing stands out. They have key passes and passing succes is on par with the midfield. The crossing is poor, but hence I tell them to cross less (and Im also not a big fan of crosses in fm21, I find them to be blocked too often).

While its a question thats not tied to a tactic per se, I know people will ask for it so here goes:

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I've always had that problem with the wide players in any 4231 I've created but it's not something I'm too worried about because I always set my tactic up for the striker to be the main goal threat. However, I got better results from the wide players when I moved the 2 CMs to DMs and the 2 wide players from the AML/AMR position to the ML/MR position

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7 hours ago, DarJ said:

I've always had that problem with the wide players in any 4231 I've created but it's not something I'm too worried about because I always set my tactic up for the striker to be the main goal threat. However, I got better results from the wide players when I moved the 2 CMs to DMs and the 2 wide players from the AML/AMR position to the ML/MR position

Which saved me last season, but this season my strikers are not in the same vein of form.

Isnt moving players back counterproductive for a gegenpress? As you want at least some players higher up.

 

I just dont understand what exactly the rating is based on, our how to improve it.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 30/11/2021 at 13:01, eXistenZ said:

My biggest concerns are again my wingers, as I invested the heaviest for them. My question is basicly, what do I need to make them shine, or at least, not be absolute garbage?

I would start by removing the overlap left and right instructions. They are primarily emphasing the play of your Fullbacks at the cost of your Wingers. Your selected roles for the Fullbacks will naturally overlap and support the attack on a positive mentality, so no need for those instructions. 

Your overall setup is quite rigid so I would consider adding be more expressive to increase your teams fluidity. It can help your team to be not as predictable and go for the unexpected

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1 hour ago, CARRERA said:

I would start by removing the overlap left and right instructions. They are primarily emphasing the play of your Fullbacks at the cost of your Wingers. Your selected roles for the Fullbacks will naturally overlap and support the attack on a positive mentality, so no need for those instructions. 

Your overall setup is quite rigid so I would consider adding be more expressive to increase your teams fluidity. It can help your team to be not as predictable and go for the unexpected

Yeah ive deviatd a bit now from this tactic, and basicly implemntd this (base don something i found online) just before the qatar world cup break. Its more aggressve and demanding, but does create a lot of chances and xG. However the problem for the wide players remain the same. Very low ratings

 

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Are you doing well overall, as opposed to the ratings of your wingers?  Are you having trouble scoring or defending?

Here are some potential issues that I see, but you'd have to figure out if they really are issues:

  • You have TIs:  Attacking, Extremely Higher Tempo, Pass Into Space, Counter-Press, Much Higher LOE, Higher DL, Extremely Urgent Pressing and Prevent Short GK.  Yes, Gegenpressing plus fast attacking can work but don't expect your wingers to have much time on the ball, let alone in space, to make plays.  You have instructed your team to win the ball back quickly, take risks and get rid of the ball asap;
  • Pass Into Space:  I'd take a look whether there is space to pass into.  If you steal the ball high up, I doubt there'd be much space to pass into;
  • Can you switch your Mez(s) and BWM(d)?  A lot of people say that Mez and IF are not a good partnership.  Some say otherwise and again, you'd have to see for yourself.  Mez and IW(s) (plus maybe the CWB) might be a better creative team, also:
  • You could focus play down the right, which might draw the defense in that direction and give more space for your IF to attack;
  • When playing from your GK, you have distribute to CBs/FBs on plus both fullbacks attacking and a Mez.  Your CBs might not have many passing options, which might require them to make low percentage, long-range passes;
  • Two attack duties on your left might - again, might -- be too much.  Can your LB play WB(s)?  He'd get further forward but might better support your IF;
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At the moment im in a very poor runof form. The xG and chances speak in my favour, but players not turning up for games just costs me. So Ilose or draw matches against opponents I should drop points aganst

 

 

Its often the keeper (who i rotate with another player untill he has a **** match then i swap again) or the attackers/attacking midfielders who just have low dicerolls for the day, and sometimes both;. Combined with the opposition goalkeeper who constantly score 7.5's against me. But yeah, the IF on the left just is just horrible, I dont understand how yu can drop off to a 6.4 within 25minutes

Doesnt the mezzala take in the place of the IF when he cuts inside and therefore provides width?

Ive now lowered the LoE and changed LB to WBs. Distribution is also left up to the goalie now

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Dont expect to win against Befica, but the way how is again just devastating. Players dont turn up and dont finish their chances

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9 hours ago, eXistenZ said:

Doesnt the mezzala take in the place of the IF when he cuts inside and therefore provides width?

Possibly.  But sometimes they just compete for the same area.  Might depend upon their ant/otb/team.  You just have to watch their interaction, sometimes full match for a stretch, to see.  Sometimes I think that I have a great tactic but it's only in full-match that I see two players consistently close together.  Is that a ME issue?  I don't know.

Looks like your tactic is working pretty well.  Great Xg, which is only one tool, but still.  You just have crappy finishing and goaltending.  Hard for a change in tactic to fix that but maybe if you switched to a less high pressing system or a tactic which highlights a different goal scorer but more likely, you just need better players?  Or maybe just bad dice-rolls, like you wrote?

You do rack up a lot of fouls and yellow cards.

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3 hours ago, glengarry224 said:

Possibly.  But sometimes they just compete for the same area.  Might depend upon their ant/otb/team.  You just have to watch their interaction, sometimes full match for a stretch, to see.  Sometimes I think that I have a great tactic but it's only in full-match that I see two players consistently close together.  Is that a ME issue?  I don't know.

Looks like your tactic is working pretty well.  Great Xg, which is only one tool, but still.  You just have crappy finishing and goaltending.  Hard for a change in tactic to fix that but maybe if you switched to a less high pressing system or a tactic which highlights a different goal scorer but more likely, you just need better players?  Or maybe just bad dice-rolls, like you wrote?

You do rack up a lot of fouls and yellow cards.

So the season finished and thanks to a saved penalty against porto and failing of the other teams, I managed to squeeze in 2nd place. My point total was however lower than last year, despite a higher xG.

Bad finishing seems to be a recurring theme, despite main AF Elis became 3rd in the topscorers chart and had actually won it in my first season. Unfortunately, the IF problem kept persisting with actually both players I use for the position scoring in general worse than team average

So for next season (after my break) I came up with this tactic and I'd like your opinion on it. Let me explain my train of thoughts.

-Ive looked at the comparison screen and we rank almost top for speed and pace+ decisions, and very high for technical and dribbling. So i changed the mez to a BBM , which hopefully gives the wide players more space to operate and dribble in, Hence also the AM on support (so I can tweak the dribbling, which birkenmeier isnt good at but his backup is)

-Because of the pace and the reasonable OTB, i selected for pass into space and pulling the LoE back so there is some space to pass into. Our finishing and long shots are subpar, hence WBIB and moving Elis (main goalscorer) to the IF, hoping he can break that curse. Ill probably try to work on the finishing with some traits and training

-Comparison suggests defenders are good at tackling and reasonably fast, hence the get stuck in and higher defensive line. If im giving away too many fouls i might turn of the get stuck in

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21 hours ago, eXistenZ said:

So the season finished and thanks to a saved penalty against porto and failing of the other teams, I managed to squeeze in 2nd place. My point total was however lower than last year, despite a higher xG.

Bad finishing seems to be a recurring theme, despite main AF Elis became 3rd in the topscorers chart and had actually won it in my first season. Unfortunately, the IF problem kept persisting with actually both players I use for the position scoring in general worse than team average

So for next season (after my break) I came up with this tactic and I'd like your opinion on it. Let me explain my train of thoughts.

-Ive looked at the comparison screen and we rank almost top for speed and pace+ decisions, and very high for technical and dribbling. So i changed the mez to a BBM , which hopefully gives the wide players more space to operate and dribble in, Hence also the AM on support (so I can tweak the dribbling, which birkenmeier isnt good at but his backup is)

-Because of the pace and the reasonable OTB, i selected for pass into space and pulling the LoE back so there is some space to pass into. Our finishing and long shots are subpar, hence WBIB and moving Elis (main goalscorer) to the IF, hoping he can break that curse. Ill probably try to work on the finishing with some traits and training

-Comparison suggests defenders are good at tackling and reasonably fast, hence the get stuck in and higher defensive line. If im giving away too many fouls i might turn of the get stuck in

Impressive results, especially considering poor finishing.  Don't know your budget but sometimes vaulting from second to champions takes adding the right player or two, not just a tactical mod. 

Sounds like a plan.  Let us know how it works out.  I like lowering the LOE to allow opportunities to counter.  You could train an alternate with an even lower LOE and more direct passing for when your players tire or against teams which resist coming out.  Maybe rotate that with a higher pressing system.  Yeah, if you have quick players who can dribble, get those players into position to run at defense and break down your opponent's defensive structure.

Moving your striker to LW is a good idea too.  Does your AF have the trait 'beats offside trap' or can you train it? 

The instructions I'd keep an eye on are:

  • WBIB:  might work great but also might slow down your attack and take away your speed advantage (but higher tempo might balance that out too).  You'll have to see;
  • High DL, plus 'counter-press', plus 'more urgent', plus sometimes seven players getting forwards, plus 'get stuck in':  possible that you'll only have three men back and if one of them misses a tackle....;
  • If you want to make your LW more of a goalscoring threat, maybe 'focus play down right', which will not only get the ball more often to Thierry but also draw defenders to that side and give your LW more space.  As Rashidi says: when considering focus play on one side, look at the other side of the pitch.
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58 minutes ago, glengarry224 said:

Impressive results, especially considering poor finishing.  Don't know your budget but sometimes vaulting from second to champions takes adding the right player or two, not just a tactical mod. 

Sounds like a plan.  Let us know how it works out.  I like lowering the LOE to allow opportunities to counter.  You could train an alternate with an even lower LOE and more direct passing for when your players tire or against teams which resist coming out.  Maybe rotate that with a higher pressing system.  Yeah, if you have quick players who can dribble, get those players into position to run at defense and break down your opponent's defensive structure.

Moving your striker to LW is a good idea too.  Does your AF have the trait 'beats offside trap' or can you train it? 

The instructions I'd keep an eye on are:

  • WBIB:  might work great but also might slow down your attack and take away your speed advantage (but higher tempo might balance that out too).  You'll have to see;
  • High DL, plus 'counter-press', plus 'more urgent', plus sometimes seven players getting forwards, plus 'get stuck in':  possible that you'll only have three men back and if one of them misses a tackle....;
  • If you want to make your LW more of a goalscoring threat, maybe 'focus play down right', which will not only get the ball more often to Thierry but also draw defenders to that side and give your LW more space.  As Rashidi says: when considering focus play on one side, look at the other side of the pitch.

I havent gotten to traits yet, but it was on the list.

Ive put the get stuck in on because we rate good for tackling but its defo something that can be toggled off. Would you change anything else to prevent getting caught out?

Focussing on the right is a good idea, ill try that.

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2 hours ago, eXistenZ said:

Would you change anything else to prevent getting caught out?

At this point, I just start watching for where I'm conceding not only chances, but even just a lot of wide open play.  So, for example, your left flank might be vulnerable -- with WB and BBM getting forwards -- so worth keeping an eye on.  Are your CBs and GK good enough in the air to fight off a lot of crosses?  Quick and skilled enough to mark a fast striker, who plays off the last shoulder, and intercept angled through balls from the wings?

Early on with a tactic, I'll watch 'full match' on higher speed to see how my players interact even in non-highlight play.  If you play on 'comprehensive highlights', you can even just keep a tally of where your opponents' highlights come from (your highlights too).  If you keep seeing opponents' highlights starting on your left flank, maybe with wide open wingers/wingbacks dribbling down your left, you'll know.

If you play a team with a great RB or RWB or RW, maybe who can cross to a great forward, you might think about switching your LB to FB(s).  Of course, then you lose width on your left so an alternative is to switch BBM to BWM, but then you lose a runner in the middle.  Always a trade off.

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On 12/12/2021 at 02:37, glengarry224 said:

At this point, I just start watching for where I'm conceding not only chances, but even just a lot of wide open play.  So, for example, your left flank might be vulnerable -- with WB and BBM getting forwards -- so worth keeping an eye on.  Are your CBs and GK good enough in the air to fight off a lot of crosses?  Quick and skilled enough to mark a fast striker, who plays off the last shoulder, and intercept angled through balls from the wings?

Early on with a tactic, I'll watch 'full match' on higher speed to see how my players interact even in non-highlight play.  If you play on 'comprehensive highlights', you can even just keep a tally of where your opponents' highlights come from (your highlights too).  If you keep seeing opponents' highlights starting on your left flank, maybe with wide open wingers/wingbacks dribbling down your left, you'll know.

If you play a team with a great RB or RWB or RW, maybe who can cross to a great forward, you might think about switching your LB to FB(s).  Of course, then you lose width on your left so an alternative is to switch BBM to BWM, but then you lose a runner in the middle.  Always a trade off.

So due to internet problems I havent been able to go online consistently, but it did provide me with an opportunity to dig a bit deeper. Im halfway the season now (17league games played) and I made a spreadsheet in regards to the LW position.

Basicly I tracked who played there, and compared their rating against the average of the other players. If lower, I marked it in red. When higher, in green. I also rated the opponent (being predicted 4th, I only estimated the traditional 3 as hard. I also ommited the CL games against City and Atletico because I didnt expect anything there).

So while Elis performance has ups and down, it's pretty clear Velasco has almost only howlers of games. Which is really painfull as he was my biggest investment (I paid a transfer fee to ensure his services while he had only 6 months left with a high wage, because there were so many interested). Ive now convinced him to go out on loan, but so far nobody interested who would give him regular starter.

 

My RW has even poorer ratings, but so far I attribute that due to the fact I mostly had to play backups there, as my first choice was struck by a heavy injury which made him unavaible for 2+ months. I even had to change it to a winger, as I don’t have any left footed players there anymore

Finishing chances also looked to be a problem (but we already knew that because of the low finishing/long shots comparison). Hence I just bought Soto.  Planning on playing him in a dlf attack role, as he has the right skills and traits for it, therefore also hoping to bring other players more in the box. But his composure and finishing should also help

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Boavista wip.ods

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 16/12/2021 at 19:07, eXistenZ said:

So due to internet problems I havent been able to go online consistently, but it did provide me with an opportunity to dig a bit deeper. Im halfway the season now (17league games played) and I made a spreadsheet in regards to the LW position.

Basicly I tracked who played there, and compared their rating against the average of the other players. If lower, I marked it in red. When higher, in green. I also rated the opponent (being predicted 4th, I only estimated the traditional 3 as hard. I also ommited the CL games against City and Atletico because I didnt expect anything there).

So while Elis performance has ups and down, it's pretty clear Velasco has almost only howlers of games. Which is really painfull as he was my biggest investment (I paid a transfer fee to ensure his services while he had only 6 months left with a high wage, because there were so many interested). Ive now convinced him to go out on loan, but so far nobody interested who would give him regular starter.

 

My RW has even poorer ratings, but so far I attribute that due to the fact I mostly had to play backups there, as my first choice was struck by a heavy injury which made him unavaible for 2+ months. I even had to change it to a winger, as I don’t have any left footed players there anymore

Finishing chances also looked to be a problem (but we already knew that because of the low finishing/long shots comparison). Hence I just bought Soto.  Planning on playing him in a dlf attack role, as he has the right skills and traits for it, therefore also hoping to bring other players more in the box. But his composure and finishing should also help

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20211216125923_1.jpg

20211216132224_1.jpg

Boavista wip.ods 7.1 kB · 2 downloads

I also struggle with low ratings for my wingers in 4231. Did you find anything that helped?

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12 hours ago, ThomasHK1979 said:

I also struggle with low ratings for my wingers in 4231. Did you find anything that helped?

Not directly. I changed the AMR to an AP (as that was my best players best role), hoping to drag the focus to the right so my IF got more room. I also sold Velasco and replaced him, with a more nimble striker like player. The IF on the left staysthe weak point though. I kinda got bored of the career as I noticed that the poor finishing didnt get better the season after, and I relied a lot on setpieces to score, despite not having the best setpiece takers. Despite being "leading liga nos players", my strikers were on average poor as well.

 

Apparently I just can't do a 4231, which is supposedly the easiest formation in the game.  Taking a break of FM atm. Tried to get a journeyman going, but its not for me, I need some connection to the club

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I'm no tactical mastermind, but it seems to me that you keep coming up with formations where players are instructed to run into each other's paths? You say your RW is performing poorly, but if he's on w(s), he'll be staying wide much of the time, which is exactly where your wing back on attack is bound to be. In your very first example you had an IF, Mez, AF and an AM racing for central spaces in the box pretty much at the same time. 

Your TI's are plentiful as well, where a run with ball and work ball into box (in my experience) leads to many lost balls - especially with teams that aren't favourites in the league. 

All in all it seems to me like you've done very well in delivering the goods. I think it's now all about finding the right balance for your players. Personally I find a mez on support works wonders with a winger on attack :) I've supplied them with a wing back on defence and they form nice triangles, while remaining defensively solid. I always have to remind myself that good attacks mean giving space to the ones who have to score. If that's supposed to be your striker, make sure he's (most of the time) the one in the box, with a winger coming in a bit later to provide a passing option from where he can shoot. If you then have a midfielder who comes in late on support, you have an option outside the box to try a long shot - or one that can bypass your opponents defence when playing a deep counter ball (my mezzala often does this, even though he's on support).

Just my two cents though :) 

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On 10/01/2022 at 17:16, jens_dewit said:

I'm no tactical mastermind, but it seems to me that you keep coming up with formations where players are instructed to run into each other's paths? You say your RW is performing poorly, but if he's on w(s), he'll be staying wide much of the time, which is exactly where your wing back on attack is bound to be. In your very first example you had an IF, Mez, AF and an AM racing for central spaces in the box pretty much at the same time. 

Your TI's are plentiful as well, where a run with ball and work ball into box (in my experience) leads to many lost balls - especially with teams that aren't favourites in the league. 

All in all it seems to me like you've done very well in delivering the goods. I think it's now all about finding the right balance for your players. Personally I find a mez on support works wonders with a winger on attack :) I've supplied them with a wing back on defence and they form nice triangles, while remaining defensively solid. I always have to remind myself that good attacks mean giving space to the ones who have to score. If that's supposed to be your striker, make sure he's (most of the time) the one in the box, with a winger coming in a bit later to provide a passing option from where he can shoot. If you then have a midfielder who comes in late on support, you have an option outside the box to try a long shot - or one that can bypass your opponents defence when playing a deep counter ball (my mezzala often does this, even though he's on support).

Just my two cents though :) 

Well to be fair, the tactic is posted higher up is not what I ended up using precisly. The RW was originally an inverted Winger, but my preferred player suffered a really bad injury that saw him out of action for most of the season, and none of his backup was really suited for the IW role, because of their footedness, hence the change to a winger. My idea was to combine it with a WB on attack so he would regulary make the overlap. Eventually yhe RW became an AP, because I had this really cool regen whose prefered position was RW, but didnt have the speed or dribbling for a Winger/inverted Winger. The idea here was to create an overload that would unlock the left IF.

Likewise, to get the striker scoring more, I changed it from a DLF to a simple AF, and to provide an extra scoring option, the AM became a Shadow Striker.

WBIB is ticked on because our long shots suck, and I basicly get prompted every match "we are having shots but most of them are long range- turn WBIB on"

 

Eventually none of it mattered that much, as I barely broke even my xg, while clubs like Porto/Benfica outperformed theirs by 20. My striker combined decent games with howlers, and a significant part of my goals ended up coming from setpieces. Like said, Im probably one of the few who cant get a 4231 to work

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57 minutes ago, eXistenZ said:

Well to be fair, the tactic is posted higher up is not what I ended up using precisly. The RW was originally an inverted Winger, but my preferred player suffered a really bad injury that saw him out of action for most of the season, and none of his backup was really suited for the IW role, because of their footedness, hence the change to a winger. My idea was to combine it with a WB on attack so he would regulary make the overlap. Eventually yhe RW became an AP, because I had this really cool regen whose prefered position was RW, but didnt have the speed or dribbling for a Winger/inverted Winger. The idea here was to create an overload that would unlock the left IF.

Likewise, to get the striker scoring more, I changed it from a DLF to a simple AF, and to provide an extra scoring option, the AM became a Shadow Striker.

WBIB is ticked on because our long shots suck, and I basicly get prompted every match "we are having shots but most of them are long range- turn WBIB on"

 

Eventually none of it mattered that much, as I barely broke even my xg, while clubs like Porto/Benfica outperformed theirs by 20. My striker combined decent games with howlers, and a significant part of my goals ended up coming from setpieces. Like said, Im probably one of the few who cant get a 4231 to work

I think you'd be surprised how many people struggle with 4231. It's a formation that needs careful tweaking. Most people are successful with it either because they use top teams or because they use it for longer periods (seasons) where they slowly upgrade their material. I rarely use it because it's tricky to get all parts clicking.

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