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Tactical Considerations necessary for a tactic : 4-4-2 Diamond


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Are there certain mental notes and tactical considerations that are almost absolutely necessary for certain specific tactics ? And what are some examples for Generally used tactics if there are any ?

 

I'm only asking this because i have mostly used the same tactic for years and started a journeyman save and picked a club that had it's best players suited to the 4-4-2 diamond from a personnel standpoint. I floundered through the first half of the season before finding out that with the 442 diamond, having aggressive FBs or WBs is much for effective than not. 

 

Which leads to my next Question - Is it better to have aggressive fbs/Wbs for most/all tactics with Dms ?

in a generally expected style of play sort of way 

and the next question would be, what are some key considerations needed for certain common tactics

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I may not be able to help you with "all common tactics" but I've been playing the 4-4-2 diamond and recently wrote a thread about my sort of quest to make a young fantasista shine behind the 2 strikers of the 442 diamond, but since then and from watching how my team plays over the time I feel I have a better understanding now.
I guess you can make a list of strengths and weaknesses to assess every formation out there, but regarding the 4-4-2 diamond here's something:

Pros:

  • Passing options
  • Numbers advantage in midfield
  • Compact when defending
  • Attacking formation
  • Versatile formation due to the possible combinations

Cons:

  • Lack of width
  • Central midfielders wide or out of position
  • Full backs being doubled down at times
  • Fitness/Stamina of some players like the full backs
  • Vulnerable to counters

By experience here's something I learnt, not saying this is the only way it can work but it has been working for me at least...

  1. Fullbacks/Wingbacks are your only natural source of width both defensively as offensively, you need to balance this out.
  2. Your shape (the diamond shape) is key to build up attacks and sitting back and defending, so pressing more urgent or roaming can at times dismantle your diamond shape and might cause more harm than good.
  3. You need a connection between the midfield and the front 2, so again, roaming, move into channels and so on must be carefully considered.

Feel free to give your inputs because I'm still playing this save and always looking to improve my tactic.

Edited by davidbarros2
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Had some brief discussion here recently: 

 

 

Personally I think the 4312 formation in FM much more closely resembles an IRl diamond- a super strictly staggered 41212 just looks too narrow. A 3 man midfield with a defensive holder in the middle gives smoother passing angles, more natural width, and most importantly makes the defensive block more effective. As FM tactics are the defensive shape, I can't think of a single instance of a team trying to defend in a narrow 41212 shape. 

Having said that, it doesn't mean the shape is definitely unworkable. And the general principles remain similar.

I think it's important to caveat as well re the width that there's a distinction to be made between supporting width (say, having a presence at the edge of the final third near the touchline) and offensive-winger width (someone getting to the byline). You have 3 options for width in a diamond- fullbacks, strikers, and central midfielders. If you play with a striker or two that run the channels, or have roam from position on (kind of like split strikers, a la Ole's united would sometimes play) then you'll frequently see wide runs and crosses from the front two. 

Central midfielders can provide either attacking or supporting width through the use of player instructions and roles- for example a Carrilero or a Mezzala on attack. The most natural solution is to use an attacking fullback or wingback to provide width. If you intend to use this player to dominate the entire flank, then you'll need a near-sided CM who can cover. 

A right sided structure of e.g. AF, CAR, WBs can definitely provide a fluid source of width, forming nice neat triangles. 

One other underrated point is that there is a big difference between diamonds in teams looking to dominate the ball and likely to face low block teams, and a more counter attacking diamond. One might wish to play with the latter structure if you have:

a) tall centre backs (conceding the flanks->more crosses)

b) no decent wingers

c) 2 good strikers

d) a creative number 10.

With the idea being that you defend the hammering from the flanks, try and win the ball back, and then play directly through the playmaker in the 10 to say a big man little man striker pairing, or two pacey split strikers. This could definitely work. And if you lose the ball, you have a three man work horse midfield to try and mop up.

Alternatively, trying to dominate and pin the opponent back using a diamond should enable nice passing triangles, and a fluid front 3/5/7. Functionally it may be similar to a 433 with inside forwards and a false 9, but a little less movement.

1 hour ago, DownTheFrank said:

Which leads to my next Question - Is it better to have aggressive fbs/Wbs for most/all tactics with Dms

I have been using a 4312 which looks like this:

          AF-AF

            APs

  CMa-CMd-BBMs

FBs-BPDd-CDd-FBs

Where I change the fullbacks considerably depending on strength of opposition and home/away- at home agaisnt weak teams I'll use a WBa or WBs, and the tactic above is the more conservative version for bigger games. The wide CMs have PIs like stay wider/run wide with ball. Using FBs on a positive or attacking mentality means that whilst they'll usually be a wide supporting option from deep (forming a 2332 attacking shape) they will also make well timed runs to the byline for a cutback, or inside as well to play the final pass. I find this generates good variety in attack, rather than the more predictable WBa/WBs and covering CMs. This obviously requires you to have a very good team though- not sure what level you're playing at.

Edited by Flußkrebs
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1 hour ago, davidbarros2 said:

I may not be able to help you with "all common tactics" but I've been playing the 4-4-2 diamond and recently wrote a thread about my sort of quest to make a young fantasista shine behind the 2 strikers of the 442 diamond, but since then and from watching how my team plays over the time I feel I have a better understanding now.
I guess you can make a list of strengths and weaknesses to assess every formation out there, but regarding the 4-4-2 diamond here's something:

Pros:

  • Passing options
  • Numbers advantage in midfield
  • Compact when defending
  • Attacking formation
  • Versatile formation due to the possible combinations

Cons:

  • Lack of width
  • Central midfielders wide or out of position
  • Full backs being doubled down at times
  • Fitness/Stamina of some players like the full backs
  • Vulnerable to counters

By experience here's something I learnt, not saying this is the only way it can work but it has been working for me at least...

  1. Fullbacks/Wingbacks are your only natural source of width both defensively as offensively, you need to balance this out.
  2. Your shape (the diamond shape) is key to build up attacks and sitting back and defending, so pressing more urgent or roaming can at times dismantle your diamond shape and might cause more harm than good.
  3. You need a connection between the midfield and the front 2, so again, roaming, move into channels and so on must be carefully considered.

Feel free to give your inputs because I'm still playing this save and always looking to improve my tactic.

With common tactics i meant tactics like the flat 442, the 4231, and the 433 wide for example. as they seem to be the tactics that are usually easy to find players for. 

 

Your write up is exactly the sort of input i was looking for. Much appreciated. Thank you 

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3 horas atrás, DownTheFrank disse:

With common tactics i meant tactics like the flat 442, the 4231, and the 433 wide for example. as they seem to be the tactics that are usually easy to find players for. 

 

Your write up is exactly the sort of input i was looking for. Much appreciated. Thank you 

Well it's not an in depth guide but rather a cheat sheet about must haves, if it helps:

 

3NYdlqa.png.b9031475799fd3f42835d07f53f31feb.png

 

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I wonder if it possible to punish aggressive fullbacks in game because for me it seems to be rare either the goalkeeper or the defenders can see a winger making a run and whether the pass is accurate to find the forwards. The AI seems to flawless in either punishing high defensive lines, slow defenders and aggressive wingbacks :onmehead:

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My thoughts on diamond formations in FM:

  1. The wide diamond is viable in FM22. You will concede plenty of goals, but you can generate a lot of offense with four wide players, two strikers, and an AMC on the pitch. Even if you start with a narrow diamond, it's good to have positional flexibility to throw a wide diamond out there if needed.
  2. In a wide diamond, I would prefer to use conventional wingers (or maybe defensive wingers) plus two inverted wingbacks to bulk up the central midfield area. Inverted wingbacks rival CM(a) for role of the year, just with less publicity.
  3. A narrow diamond is also viable, even with the super-skinny default in FM22. I give my central midfielders "stay wider" instructions, regardless of which role I give them.
  4. In all diamonds, I find the forwards produce best when used as AF(a). Other options can work, but you have to be careful not to put all of your eggs in one striker basket. One of the major benefits of a diamond formation in FM is that you only need one of your two strikers to be on form for you to succeed. In a 4-2-3-1 or 4-5-1 formation, a struggling striker can sink you very quickly. Furthermore, using two attack roles means they'll often be in position to play each other in, and they tend to be more aggressive with their pressing.
  5. The AMC is open for debate. I don't love the AP role in this spot and prefer to move the playmaking job back to DMC or central midfield. I want my AMC to be a third goalscoring option, so he has to have decent finishing, good off the ball, and the attributes necessary to evade marking (agility, off the ball, acceleration). He should be able to convert those loose balls in the box into goals and work one-twos with the forwards. I wouldn't waste this spot on a lazy old player.
  6. The DMC is where I'll use a DLP, HB, or AM. I would prefer the supposed conservativism of the HB role, but I often see them getting too far forward in the match engine, so I just stick with a DLP and put my best playmaker back there. It's a very easy role to fill in the transfer market, and I find dozens of suitable 30+ year olds available for cheap each season.
  7. I always give my fullbacks a wingback role (inverted, complete, or conventional). FB just doesn't seem to do enough or position aggressively enough. I tinker with the role and duty based on match situation, going much more aggressive if I need a goal. I won't use a diamond unless I have four playable wingbacks on the team because I don't want to be stuck with a defensive fullback or converted CD in that spot.
  8. I much prefer the shapes of the alternative diamonds, 4-1-3-2 or 4-3-1-2, but they don't always succeed in the FM World. In FM22, I have found the 4-3-1-2 to be very leaky defensively. The 4-1-3-2 is the opposite, but it can be very tame on offense unless you get a beast to put in a CM(a) role in the middle and have excellent attacking wingbacks to feed your forwards. Don't even bother with these formations if your wingbacks are duds.
  9. Finally, I love the pressing I can get with two forwards and an AMC. Surprisingly, it seems to work much better than AML-ST-AMR does. AI teams LOVE passing in a triangle between GK and two of their defenders. They'll do this for half the match if you let them. The diamond formations disrupt this a bit, which is a lot of the reason why I prefer watching them play out in FM.

 

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1 hour ago, Overmars said:

My thoughts on diamond formations in FM:

  1. The wide diamond is viable in FM22. You will concede plenty of goals, but you can generate a lot of offense with four wide players, two strikers, and an AMC on the pitch. Even if you start with a narrow diamond, it's good to have positional flexibility to throw a wide diamond out there if needed.
  2. In a wide diamond, I would prefer to use conventional wingers (or maybe defensive wingers) plus two inverted wingbacks to bulk up the central midfield area. Inverted wingbacks rival CM(a) for role of the year, just with less publicity.
  3. A narrow diamond is also viable, even with the super-skinny default in FM22. I give my central midfielders "stay wider" instructions, regardless of which role I give them.
  4. In all diamonds, I find the forwards produce best when used as AF(a). Other options can work, but you have to be careful not to put all of your eggs in one striker basket. One of the major benefits of a diamond formation in FM is that you only need one of your two strikers to be on form for you to succeed. In a 4-2-3-1 or 4-5-1 formation, a struggling striker can sink you very quickly. Furthermore, using two attack roles means they'll often be in position to play each other in, and they tend to be more aggressive with their pressing.
  5. The AMC is open for debate. I don't love the AP role in this spot and prefer to move the playmaking job back to DMC or central midfield. I want my AMC to be a third goalscoring option, so he has to have decent finishing, good off the ball, and the attributes necessary to evade marking (agility, off the ball, acceleration). He should be able to convert those loose balls in the box into goals and work one-twos with the forwards. I wouldn't waste this spot on a lazy old player.
  6. The DMC is where I'll use a DLP, HB, or AM. I would prefer the supposed conservativism of the HB role, but I often see them getting too far forward in the match engine, so I just stick with a DLP and put my best playmaker back there. It's a very easy role to fill in the transfer market, and I find dozens of suitable 30+ year olds available for cheap each season.
  7. I always give my fullbacks a wingback role (inverted, complete, or conventional). FB just doesn't seem to do enough or position aggressively enough. I tinker with the role and duty based on match situation, going much more aggressive if I need a goal. I won't use a diamond unless I have four playable wingbacks on the team because I don't want to be stuck with a defensive fullback or converted CD in that spot.
  8. I much prefer the shapes of the alternative diamonds, 4-1-3-2 or 4-3-1-2, but they don't always succeed in the FM World. In FM22, I have found the 4-3-1-2 to be very leaky defensively. The 4-1-3-2 is the opposite, but it can be very tame on offense unless you get a beast to put in a CM(a) role in the middle and have excellent attacking wingbacks to feed your forwards. Don't even bother with these formations if your wingbacks are duds.
  9. Finally, I love the pressing I can get with two forwards and an AMC. Surprisingly, it seems to work much better than AML-ST-AMR does. AI teams LOVE passing in a triangle between GK and two of their defenders. They'll do this for half the match if you let them. The diamond formations disrupt this a bit, which is a lot of the reason why I prefer watching them play out in FM.

 

Agree with majority of your points, but in terms of defensive leakiness for the 4312..

image.png.1a4d7d2d5079954c0a9cc9efb43057c0.png

image.png.47e058176ff854045fd90ae1103fce4c.pngimage.thumb.png.64d00388dc2b99d71b072ac111e7de23.png

Now of course I'm playing here as joint favourites to win the league, but I also used this style with Fortuna Sittard, and first season implementing the 4312 we achieved this:

image.thumb.png.53820e15711806c1ed685b831b0245b8.png

Current version of tactic for reference:

image.png.7df7f7d2db3db0c429b436db767d6103.png

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