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  1. 7 points
    Welcome to my first foray into Lower League Management. Recent threads have focused on using the Tactics Creator in Football Manager to recreate some of the most entertaining & iconic football teams of all time. Johan Cruyff's 3-4-3 Diamond Arrigo Sacchi's 4-4-2 Arsene Wenger's Invincibles Brazil's Jogo Bonito style Cult Heroes: Wales at Euro 2016 Pep's Barcelona The latest combined Messi, Iniesta, Neymar, Dybala, Suarez and Dybala into a system that - in my current view - is a culmination of the playing style I have been trying to create and played the best football I have seen. The beauty - in my opinion - of this style of play is that you give intelligent, technical players the freedom to go out and play, within a framework designed to get the best out of them. But what happens when your squad doesn't have - any, or all of - the intelligence to thrive with such a high level of freedom, the technical ability to play a high-tempo passing game, the fitness to press intensely or the pace to compensate for a high-block defence? In this thread, we are going to tackle the single most common topic of discussion throughout the entire series. Playing simple, attractive, possession-focused football with normal players, not yet at a level capable of playing quick passing football, with freedom and intense pressing. Wanted to play in a league system where we can ultimately compete at a high level and that I have - at least, some - basic knowledge of, so I chose to start in the lowest playable division in England: Vanarama National League North / South. The biggest challenge of lower league football - for me, personally - is relating to the club I manage. Having mainly played clubs right at the top of the game, a fan-owned club formed out of frustrations with excesses of top-level football seemed perfect. Hello, Red Rebels. We will be referring to some of the ideas discussed in Playing Style & Structure so if you have yet to read, I would recommend reading at least the overview. What are we trying to achieve? At the outset, the board agreed the following philosophies: Play possession football. Develop players using the club's own youth system. Tactical approach: Play a positive short-passing, possession-focused game. Not possession for the sake of possession. Triangles & diamonds facilitating a passing game. Build up from the back. Solid defensive platform. Multi-dimensional attack. Different goal-scoring threats. Squad Management: Build a young squad with potential to improve and stay together for a number of years. Focus on core attributes: Technical ability Intelligence Work rate & fitness Coach effective Player Traits which fit the overall system. Coach players to play in other suitable positions to build complete players and tactical flexibility. Longer Term: Invest profits back into the club, particularly the Academy and Training Facilities. Achieve Professional status as quickly as possible. Supplement young squad with more experienced tutors to improve Professionalism and Determination within the squad. Maintain focus on youth and positive, attractive football. Squad Building As you'd expect at this level, the starting squad left quite a lot to be desired so underwent a major overhaul to give us a platform to build from. With no experience at this level, my search was fairly minimal but the trial day and free transfer market proved to be a great source of young players with relatively high potential and an upgrade on the existing squad technically. We now have a youthful spine of the squad who have the basic aptitude to play the football we are hoping to play: Relatively strong technical ability, intelligence and fitness. Relatively high potential to improve as we progress. Work rate and stamina not high enough for an intense pressing game. Conversely we don't have strong defensive traits - marking, positioning, anticipation, concentration - to sit deep and keep out quality opponents. This is illustrated well in the Comparison section of the team report: Pass and move. The foundation of the type of football we are looking to play. Coaching on the Training Ground One of the more enjoyable facets of playing at this level is that - whilst players are unlikely to ever compete at the highest levels - it's satisfying to work with a player and see them improve as a footballer. Training is focused on building footballers with good all-round ability. Aiming for double figures for key technical and mental attributes. Improving versatility to play more than one position. Common examples: DC <-> DMC <-> MC MC <-> AMC AMC <-> FC AMR <-> AML DR/L <-> WBR/L <-> MR/L Coaching player traits that help within our system: Defenders playing simple passes. Midfielders playing one-twos. Attackers & wide players working on movement patterns. Tactics Structure As we have already identified in previous threads - formations are neutral; it is their application that gives then positive of negative qualities (Jonathan Wilson). Essentially this means that I need to choose a formation which: Facilitates our game plan of playing simple, passing football. Performs well against opposition formations we are likely to face. Most of the opposing teams at this level line up in a 4-4-2 formation. Suits the players we have available. Particularly offering a strong defensive structure, to mitigate defensive weaknesses in the squad. When you're talking about possession football, my go-to formation is typically some variation of 4-3-3 as a starting point. The strength of 4-3-3 is the midfield triangle facilitating passing football. At this level, the challenge - in my opinion - is the striker role. Boiled down to it's simplest level, football is about scoring more goals than the opposition. A 4-3-3 gives us a lone striker so you have a tough decision as to whether to set this striker to an Attack role - where his priority will be goalscoring, but is easily isolated - or a Support role - where he will contribute more to build up play but offer less of a goalscoring threat. At the top level, I am never too concerned. Firstly, high level teams generally have goalscoring threats across the team and a good striker can perform both link-up play and goalscoring. At this level, only my striker has a finishing attribute in double-figures so I cannot rely on goals coming from elsewhere and - as an underdog - I don't want to be wasting chances. I also don't want him isolated so I'm going to go for a strike-partnership to link up play. An alternative, which offers both a strike-partnership and facilitates possession football is the Diamond and it's variants - 4-1-3-2 or 4-3-1-2. I love the simplicity of the diamond formation. Remember being coached to play it as a kid. The diamond shape creates a lot of triangles so most of the time you'll naturally have a good passing option. When you receive the ball, look to make a pass to the more advanced players in the diamond. If you can't find a player ahead, look to your side then pass inside or backwards and circulate possession. The diamond is very close to the way I would like to play, but there are two things I would change for my system. The advanced midfielder and withdrawn striker are performing a very similar role so perhaps redundant or could be better used elsewhere. Build-up play. In my opinion, build-up play is one of the most interesting topics of discussion around tactics. My most effective build up play has come using the concept of la Salida Lavolpiana - essentially the centre-backs fanning out wide and a midfielder dropping into the space to avoid the opposition pressing and circulate possession effectively. In Football Manager we have two options to create this effect: Use a DMC with the Half-Back role. - The challenge with the Half-Back role is that - due to a glitch in the match engine - our fullbacks must be advanced, else my central defenders won't spread wide. The obvious issue with this is that it asks a tremendous amount from your defenders. Not only are they being asked to initiate build-up play with the ball at their feet, they are also being asked to defend as a 2-man defence. My verdict on this would be close to suicide considering a) the quality of players at my disposal and b) the 2v2 created by the opposition 4-4-2. Fortunately, a few months ago I was promised by SI that the issue would not go ignored. I'm sure they're hard at work resolving the issue.[/sarcasm] Play a 3-man defence. - In addition to aiding build-up play, adding a 3-man defence gives us the benefit of 3v2 in against the opposition attackers and it suits my players. Starting Formation Player Instructions GK: Goalkeeper (Defend): Distribute to Centre Backs, Take Short KicksDCR: Central Defender (Defend): N/ADC: Central Defender (Cover): N/A DCL: Central Defender (Defend): N/AWBR: Wing Back (Support): Stay wider, Run with BallDMC: Roaming Playmaker (Support): Move Into ChannelsWBL: Wing Back (Support): Stay wider, Run with BallMCR: Central Midfielder (Support): Move into ChannelsMCL: Central Midfielder (Attack): Roam from Position, Move into ChannelsFCR: Deep Lying Forward (Support): Roam from Position, Move into ChannelsFCL: Poacher (Attack): N/A Key characteristics: Solid 3-man defence creating a 3v2 against opposition attackers. Key player - George Thompson - sitting ahead of the defence in a playmaker role, sitting between the lines of an opposition 4-4-2. As possession funnels through Thompson the Wing Backs give him wide options and the midfielders give options ahead of him. 3v2 in midfield against an opposition 4-4-2. Thompson either has time and space, or is pressed which opens up a team mate. Withdrawn striker training to come deep for the ball and link-up to create a diamond and particularly link up with the advancing MC(A) to his left. Fluid front 4 with a simple goalscorer spearheading the attack. Playing Style This is the moment readers are expecting me to say, "Very Fluid" and go on another rant. Not this time. We already know that Team Shape determines two things: Individual mentality distribution, in relation to Team Mentality. Creative Freedom. High creative freedom creates beautiful football when you take players with technical ability and intelligence and give them the freedom to play. The issue is that if you look at the key attributes of our squad, particularly intelligence - vision, decision making, anticipation - the majority are actually single figure attributes. A common reaction to this may be to swing to the other extreme and play a Structured shape, reducing creative freedom to a point where we are essentially giving them an NFL style playbook and minimising free decision making but this simply isn't how I want to play. When looking at anything with a sliding scale - mentality, tempo, creative freedom etc. - another idea I find beneficial is the concept of 'neutral'. For example, whilst Highly Structured is at the opposite end of the scale, I see that as a swing from one extreme to another whereas I see Flexible as 'neutral' and likely to be the easiest to play. Team Shape: Flexible. Starting with a flexible team shape gives us a balance between the way we want to play and the way players are capable of playing, at this moment of time. Given the young squad and their potential to improve it'll be interesting to experiment, increasing to Fluid and ... dare I say it? ... Very Fluid as their footballing intelligence improves. Mentality is easily the most influential decision we make when building a tactic as it determines: Individual mentalities in correlation with Team Shape Tempo Width Defensive Line Closing Down Time Wasting The influence of a flexible team shape is that mentalities are now distributed into two groups Defenders and Defensive Midfielders Attackers and more Attacking Midfielders (includes MC strata) Now remember that my playmaker is a Roaming Playmaker in the DM strata so he is actually in the lower band of mentalities. It's only a marginal difference but I do need to account for this in team mentality to avoid my playmaker playing with a more conservative mentality. Mentality: Control This ensures that our Roaming Playmaker is a neutral mentality, meaning that he will choose the best passing option available without being swayed by a bias towards conservatism or attack. The structure and midfield runners ahead of him should encourage a positive circulation of possession. Using the Mentality spreadsheet we discussed last time out, we can see that Flexible & Control combination gives us: Sensible, conservative defenders. Neutral wingbacks and DM playmaker. Positively minded midfielders. Two threatening attack roles. My only remaining concern is whether the team has the technical ability to play the higher tempo associated with the Control mentality. Fortunately this is easily countered using Team Instructions: Shorter Passing. Play out of Defence. Both of which lower tempo back to a neutral level and contribute towards our Playing Style: So there we have it. Our playing style: Structure that facilitates build-up play, passing football and a simple goalscoring threat. Neutral tempo and creative freedom allowing players to play at a level they're capable of. Sensible pro-active pressing game. Positive, yet balanced mentality structure. Medium/High-ish Defensive block. Tactical Progression With a young squad, I will be closely monitoring their development in 3 key areas: Technical ability - technique, passing, first touch, two footedness, traits etc. As technical ability improves players will be comfortable playing a quicker tempo and more expansive game. Intelligence - vision, decisions, anticipation, concentration etc. Intelligence will dictate when they are ready to be given more creative freedom to make decisions in a more Fluid team shape. Expected to develop over time through increased game-time. Work rate & stamina. Determines when we can start pressing more intensely. Most difficult to develop work-rate, may need to use specific intensive training programs. Playing a more Fluid team shape will have two implications: Increased creative freedom to make decisions. Hence the need for intelligence. Individual mentalities converge towards the Team Mentality i.e defenders become more expansive and attackers more involved with build up play. In the event that the second effect causes issues - i.e defenders not ready and making mistakes or strikers stopping scoring due to increased responsibility - we can consider using Standard mentality to help adapt to a more Fluid team shape. In real football terms this would be allowing players to play with greater freedom but slowing things down a bit to help the transition, before building up to quicker play. For example, a progression may be: Flexible & Control -> Fluid & Standard - increased freedom, same mentality structure and slightly slower. -> Fluid & Control - pushes up mentality for more expansive play and quicker tempo. -> Very Fluid & Standard - increased freedom, same mentality structure and slightly slower. -> Very Fluid & Control - pushes up mentality for more expansive play and quicker tempo. In-Game Analysis Whilst holding our own in an FA Cup tie against a Manchester United featuring the likes of Rooney, Rashford, Lingard, Young and Schweinsteiger at Old Trafford was the closest I have been - in Football Manager 2017 - to throwing on a suit and tie for the match I am going to talk about a more typical match to demonstrate the approach. Earlier in the FA Cup run, we faced Oxford United which - whilst still not typical - was probably our most impressive performance of the season and was perhaps the highest level which we are currently able to compete. Oxford United lined up in a 4-4-2 formation which - as we hypothesised earlier - was the most common formation we faced. Against a 4-4-2 we sacrifice pressure on the opposition full backs in exchange for an extra man in defence, and midfield. Defensive Shape Analysis Our defensive set up is simple. We don't have the work rate or stamina to press and we don't have the all-round defensive ability to sit deep and withstand pressure so the plan is to use an upper-medium block and a solid defensive structure to force opposition attacks out wide and outnumber them in the centre. Average position without the ball reflects our starting formation almost exactly. The combination of the 4-4-2 naturally attacking the flanks and my own structure naturally forcing attacks onto the flanks makes this a common scenario. Wing backs drop deep, creating a 5-3-2 defensive shape. Our defenders have a 3v2 advantage against the opposition strikers. We also have a 3v2 advantage in central midfield. Midfield trio swings across with the widest midfielder supporting with wing back. Against a 4-4-2 the opposition midfield rarely provides too much threat, typically consisting of one defensive and one support player. Strikers make minor contributions defensively, sometimes disrupting opposition build up but generally staying forward offering a counter-attacking threat. In another similar attack the wingback comes forward to pressure the opposition attacker and we see a natural pendulum effect as the defence take advantage of the extra man in defence and midfield, freeing them to shift across and cover. Solid 4-man defence. 2v2 against the opposition midfield but only really one runner to track. Big flaw in the opposition AI is how regularly the opposition fullbacks fail to get forward to support an attack leaving their team mates totally outnumbered. Build-Up Play Analysis Looking at the passing combinations shows a good representation of our passing play. Goalkeeper distributes the ball short to one of the 3 defenders. Defenders generally have good passing options ahead of them so there is minimal passing between the defenders. Majority of the play goes through the midfield. George Thompson is the heartbeat of the team as playmaker. Wing backs provide width. Advanced midfielders and strikers create a reasonably fluid attacking unit, linking up well. Defence Initiating Attacks Very typical build up play here, the goalkeeper has played a short pass to the left sided centre back. Centre backs have spread out wide, rendering the opposition press completely useless. Roberts has 3 simple passing options ahead of him or can advance to the halfway line completely unchallenged. As a left-footed player, the easiest pass would be one of the inside options towards central midfield. Green circle illustrates the acres of space between the opposition lines for our playmaker. Wing backs provide width. Advanced midfielders and attackers link to provide a fluid diamond shape, giving options to advance the attack. George Thompson - Playmaker Since day one, it's been clear that George Thompson is the stand out player of the squad. Assigning him as the team's playmaker and positioning him between the lines of the opposition formation was a move to give him a platform to play his best football. In this case Thompson is advancing with the ball, preparing to initiate an attacking move. Green circle illustrates the space available to him which - as a Roaming Playmaker moving into the channels - he can take full advantage of. 3 simple, advanced passing options ahead of him. Alternatively, he can advance with the ball and draw out the opposition midfield and create space for a more advanced player. As before - wing backs provide width and advanced midfielders link with the attackers. Thompson hit 99 successful passes in this game and - as you can see - controlled game from all over the field. No surprise that he was also the most accurate passer in the league. The real advantage of this build up is not only that it is controlled, but it is also efficient. The ball does not spend long at the back. Within one or two passes we're into the attacking phase. This is illustrated perfectly in the possession heatmap. What a perfect platform to build from. Attacking Play Taking a quick look at an attack, we can see that: Advanced midfielders and forwards combine creating a fluid diamond shape. Jowers drops off deep, drawing the defender and creating space for - in this case - Greaves to attack. Wing backs provide width and stretch the opposition defence. Attacking runs from midfield can create a 3v2 overload against opposition defenders if the holding midfielder fails to track. When we can't attack centrally, we can threaten from wide. Strikers have a 2v2 against the opposition centre backs in the box. Attacking runner from midfield. Playmaker still in a lot of space to recycle possession should the attack break down. The Result Comfortable win. More than held our own against a side who are the best part of 3 leagues ahead of us. We won the league with relative ease and enjoyed two great cup runs. Progression Our primary objective is to achieve professional status which I am hoping to secure around the end of the second season. Profits from the cup run have already been invested back into the club: Adapting to playing at a higher level after promotion is always a challenge but we can be optimistic, judging the results against higher-level opponents during the cup run so we extend contracts for almost the entire team and look to supplement the squad with a few attacking options. Whilst players have benefited from a modest progression in ability, they are still lacking the intelligence and technical ability to progress the playing style to the next level. But I will be looking to developing an alternative structure using a 4-man defence as we start to face more tactically sophisticated opponents, but that's another story for another day.. Thank you & GoFundMe contributions So far the response to these threads and discussions generated have been absolutely phenomenal so once again I wanted to thank everyone for contributing as I have really enjoyed it. Wasn't a huge uptake last time but if you'd like to contribute towards the continuation of these articles and the time & effort that goes into them here's the GoFundMe page - Football Manager Tactical Analysis. I'd like to be 100% clear that these articles are completely free and will always continue to be. Contributions are simply supporting the work that's been done so far, if you've enjoyed them. As I am sure you can appreciate - whilst I love writing them - a lot of time & effort goes into these. Hope you've enjoyed reading and find some of this useful. Will be very interested in hearing your solutions to playing quality football at a lower level. Different format this time round so let's see if this generates some interesting discussions!
  2. 6 points
    FADE IN - Interior. Locker room in a stadium, somewhere in the Swazi hinterlands. As the tears stream down Nelson's face, a gentle hand reaches down, pulling him to his feet. Nelson is bewildered. "David...Moyes...? What...? How...?" The years have not been kind to Nelson's hero, a Droylsden legend. His craggy face glistens, his eyes clouded with cataracts. "Be a good lad, Nelson. Turn off the shower." "Yes, gaffer," mutters Nelson, as he tries to regain his composure, fumbling for the handle. "Find a towel, too, will you?" The fog of sadness receding, Nelson reaches for a towel. He's dreamed of just such a moment for years. But never did he think he'd meet his hero while weeping in the shower. "Gaffer, I'm...I'm confused," sputters Nelson. But Moyes interrupts, handing him a bottle of lotion. "Shh...shh. It's ok. Everything will be alright. Papa Moyesy is here." A calmness comes over Nelson. "That's right," purrs Moyes. "It's times like these when you must ask yourself, What Would Jagielka Do?" FADE OUT
  3. 6 points
    Staff Wanted Role: Assistant Manager Desired skills include Tea Making Coffee Making Quickness (to reach kettle's location) End of list.
  4. 6 points
    This is an excerpt from a guide I will be releasing in the future, which will be a giveaway to my loyal patreons who've supported me over the last few months. I do plan on dribbling this down on the forums too. Its just a massive 70 page guide. So bear with me. I find that most players have a good idea of the basics about tactic creation. Where most go wrong is surprisingly over squad building. Now this may even sound strange, but its true. Overachievement demands that you know what goes wrong in transitions, however most times people fail to recognise the failure point in transitions. They won't know why a player failed to make a challenge, or close down a flank, or even take a shot at goal. It's not an issue when you are managing one of the top sides in the world, because let's face it most of their attributes are already above average. Its when you go down the totem pole that the challenge increases. In the following excerpt. I talk about squad building and how important it is to identify key swing attributes in your team, even before we take a look at what I've termed in my book as Core Role Attributes, these are attributes central to the performance of a role and duty. SQUAD BUILDING So do you build a tactic around your squad or do you build a team around your system? You always need to make the latter your goal, and there is a basic reason why. When you build a tactic around the squad you have, you're always going to be in band-aid mode. This means that you're trying to shoe horn your players into a particular system. Its not ideal and you frequently need to make compromises. Regardless of budgetary constraints, you need to find a way to build a team into the kind of system you want to play. Many people have told me that they find this impossible in certain cases. They could have taken over a club and discovered that the board has given them no wage budget and worse still, every loan signing they've made is uselss. Let's face it most loan signings can be terminated, so you still have a window to make a number of changes. You could be left with no wage budget, but you should still be able to fit a side around a system. There are certain golden rules I follow to make things simple when I want to choose who plays for me: THE SWING ATTRIBUTES Bravery - Determination - Work Rate For me when all things are equal, these attributes are the swing factor. Sometimes these attributes are the very first I look at. For certain duties, these are absolutely vital. Bravery Without this attribute, a player won't go into a challenge, or dive into a header. They affect offensive and defensive situations. A 50-50 ball, becomes a certainty for the opposition AI. So, when it comes to support players, Bravery is a swing factor. If you have less than 8, you have no place in my side as a Support duty. And this duty is huge, because it affects you during transitions. You can't improve bravery, sometimes it may be ok for a striker to have low bravery, but in those tight matches where lunging into a cross is important, this attribute could swing the result the wrong way. So I never pick players with low bravery. This becomes especially true for LLM saves, low bravery means no squad number. And it gets really tough in LLM football, which means I trial the hell out of the world. Work Rate If you are looking for a team to give you lung bursting work, then high stamina and natural fitness are not enough, you need work rate. And a good dose of it. Nothing less than the league average. This attribute defines whether a player is capable of covering every blade of grass, twice. A player with stamina may do it, but a player with low work rate will never do it. Determination Are you fighting to the last minute for an equaliser? Are you urging on a support player to cover miles of grass? Do you want the player to work hard during a game when you are a goal down? Do you want players who are willing to fight for a point? Then you need determination. For me, this is the most important attribute for any team. It gets especially important for sides that are planning to over achieve. A player may have anticipation and positioning, but if he doesn't have the determination to get back in time, then transitions may fail due to his lack of desire. This makes it one of the most important swing attributes in the game. These 3 attributes together form the core requirements for any side that wishes to play with ANY kind of block. If you are looking for players to defend from the front, then the front liners need all these attributes. If you want your midfield to come back and work hard all the time then you need them to have it too. In fact, whenever I build my squad these are always the first 3 attributes I zoom into. Once you have isolated the players that fit the mold of the battling warrior, then you go and start shortlisting players. I always have a few rules for these too. Rule 1 More central midfielders are always better than more wingers. There are more systems that control midfield with central midfielders in the game than there are with wingers. You can also take central midfielders and play them as playmakers, defensive midfielders, box to box midfielders and sometimes even wingers. You usually can't do the same with wingers. Furthermore, most good wingers are low on technical skills like marking and tackling. Rule 2 More fullbacks are better than wingers. Full backs are one of the more versatile positions in the game, they can be retrained as wing backs and as wingers. And they can tackle. They are also incredibly versatlile positions in any system. Furthermore, if you can build a system with good full backs, then you can build really good attacking and controlling systems. Full backs give you incredible width and they can tackle. Rule 3 Always have at least one striker who has strength and good first touch. Having a striker who can hold up the ball, gives us options up front. If he has the Swing Attributes, then you also have a final third bully. Imagine having a "Diego Costa" bullying an opponents back line. These players can work well with pacey off-strikers and can bring others into play. Their ability to hold the ball up will give your sides time to build attacks. If they fail to hold up the ball, you will be a victim to quick transitions. It's very dangerous losing a ball in the final third transition off a player who is trying to hold up the ball and is unsuited to the role. Rule 4 Great mentals are important for central defenders Always try to get one defender or select one defender who has great positioning, marking anticipation and concentration. This defender will usually be the one racking up the interceptions. Eventually SI will rework how interceptions are calculated in the game, but for now, you need a defender who can read the game. If you have two fast defenders and neither can read the game, then you will usually end up praying they run faster, which is usually never a good thing. Now that we have sorted out some requirements lets start building the rest of the squad. Lets start with the core support players. In the book I have listed out them out as Destroyers, Supporters and Creators, or something along those lines. Essentially we want at least a few attributes that are core. The Swing attributes form the core for all of them. For the Destroyers you need to add acceleration, anticipation, tackling and concentration. For the Supporters you need to add teamwork, passing, tackling, first touch and decisions For the Creators you need to add, decisions, passing, crossing, first touch. For strikers it goes without saying they need finishing and composure. sWhen you have isolated these attributes you will notice one thing, there are a large number of systems your team can now play. 4411, 4312, 4231, 3421, 3412, 532, 352, 51221DM Wide, 4231, 4213DM, 41221 At this point, I am expecting some of you to say :"You don't have any wingers, so how can you play some of these systems?" The game is versatile, it allows you to play someone out of position. So long as they have the attributes for the job, it will get done. You can retrain him for the position, but you should never allow the player to dictate what you can and cannot do. You need to get creative with some of the roles in the game. Let's take one example: This happens to be on of my central midfielders, he has decent off the ball, and has average crossing and dribbling, but he has no acceleration to speak of. However his anticipation and tackling make him a good choice as a wide midfielder who can play on support. I can expect him to get up to support and drop deep to defend. Knowing he doesn't have great acceleration will mean I don't need to think of him as an attack duty, or I could give him the attack duty but tell him or the team to hit early crosses. This is how I think with every single player that I've identified as a support player. Now I look for those that can be played in multiple positions. If I can find a fullback who can play as a winger, then his tackling, positioning and workrate make him more valuable to me than a winger who can only cross and dribble. Now I have a player who can drop back to help the team out. The next step is to put them together into systems that allow me to morph from one tactic to another if I need to. I love playing LLM, and sometimes the only way to win, is to react to ingame events .If the AI is willing to go into a 424 to win matches, why should I stay on one tactic, shouldn't I be able to have the same sort of adaptability? Yes, but it all depends on how well your team can move from one role to another role. You need players who can be versatile, you can't have an entire second or third team on the bench, but you can certainly play a different system by changing a role and duty here or there. I can maintain the same level of risk, but change the profile of my attack. Now isn't that more powerful? Setting up a System Now that you have shortlisted your squad its time for you to think about the tactical system you will be using with them. Essentially whatever system you create has to control key zones on the pitch, which I will explain later as Zone 14 or the Golden zone. This immediately gives systems with a Defensive Midfieder and Attacking Midfielders an edge. This part is easy, right? I mean we go out we get ourselves enough players to be versatile. What's the next part? What kind of systems should I build? And this is where people stumble. When we go out and secure these players there is a reason why I chose so many midfielders. To do that I need you to understand a concept common in Germany and Austria called Juego de Posición. It basically boils down to telling your team to play football by controlling grids on a pitch. “Do you know how Barcelona win the ball back so quickly? It’s because they don’t have to run back more than 10 metres as they never pass the ball more than 10 metres.” – Johan Cruyff Football is about controlling space, and these are covered in numerous articles on the web as "Principles of Positional Play". There is also a little known theory about "half spaces" and how to control Zone 14, or what I like to call in FM as the Golden Zone. Zone 14/Golden Zone/Juego de Posición Whenever you create any system, it plays against another system. When you head out and play a game of football, its one tactical system against another tactical system. The goal is to breach the defences and score goals, and in the last 10 years, numereous studies have postulated the co-relation with controlling Zone 14 with a large number of assists. This can easily be applied in FM. A large number of goals come from assists created from within the Golden Zone. When we decide on the Swing Attributes we have basically decided which one of our players is going to be the frontline battling titan sent out to control areas of the pitch. So whatever system you create, when it comes down to transitions you don't want to see the AI happily camping in our Golden Zone. And, you want to be able to get into theirs. This can be done with many systems. Does this mean we need to set up shop and camp there? No it means we somehow need to drag the opposition around in that area so that we can free up one player to play a deadly pass to a goalscorer. And this is one of the reasons why I favour using an APM as a wide playmaker in a wide 41221, he's an instant magnet. So what kind of systems lend themselves naturally to creating control here? Immediately several pop to mind: 4231, 4312, 4132, 41221, 433Narrow, 3142, 442 Diamond What do these systems have in common? All of them have a DM or an AM in either zone. This doesn't mean that you automatically gain an advantage. It just means that you have the players and with the right attributes they stand a good chance of making something happen. As a manager its up to you to design a system which either drags them around creating space for your scorers, or if you are defending, herd the AI into cul-de-sacs where you win the 2nd ball or they turn over possession. The Swing Attributes I listed earlier make it easier for you to filter out those who can work hard to control the space. Anytime you see someone fail to, check those attributes first before you check on their technical abilities. Some of these tactics seem a bit odd, like the 442 Diamond and the 4312narrow, both of these play narrow. And it would appear that we are ceding control wide to have an advantage in the middle. Yes, we are ceding control, but remember eariler when I looked around for fighting midfielders with bravery, determination and work rate, why do you think they are in the team? To battle over every blade of grass in midfield to win the ball. Sometimes you will end up ceding control of specific areas to get this done. For example, a 442 narrow diamond would give up some measure of control of the flanks in order for the system to control the middle. Deciding what system you can use sometimes becomes the harder choice. Here I would recommend that you stay away from a 442. In the image above, these are the two zones that need to be controlled for the 442 to succeed. To exploit a 442 or any system we need to identify the weak areas of the system and take advantage of it. The 442 fails to control any zone effectively apart from the flanks, but controlling this area of the pitch also limits the kind of football you can play. Any attempt to play a more attacking role in the final third through the middle weakens your centre. So unless you have very good players, you would probably be better off playing a system like a 41221, 451, 4312 or even a 4231 Each one of these systems seeks to control some part of the pitch with more players. Now having already followed certain rules with player selections you would now have a squad with more central midfielders, this will give you more options to control the middle. Now we need to apply all this into specific games. And I have a match against Leicester coming up and they play a wicked 442. SETTING UP A SQUAD FOR A SPECIFIC GAME Most people start the game with a tactic in mind, they choose their starting 11, set up training and look forward to the first game of the season. Results usually end up working out for them, and then towards the middle of the season, things start to go pear-shaped. Fact is, you need to think about squad building throughout the season. You need to choose who to play for every game and every kind of opposition you face. Most times when you are one of the best teams in the game, it isn't much of an issue. In my long term save with Torino, they just happen to be one of the top 10 clubs in the world. In the Serie A, they are probably the best team. Setting them up becomes an afterthought, because there are probably only 2 teams there that pose a significant challenge. When you reach this stage, then squad building has been perfected. In order to get to that stage you need to go through several years of planning, and it begins when you are a small club punching above your weight. This is when you plan your squad around the matches you face. In the previous section I spoke about how you add players to your squad. I explained why I chose to prefer full backs and central midfielders above all else. There is a simple reason for this - it allows me to choose the right 11 for every match. And this is how I do things. I usually scout opposition teams study their strengths and set up to combat them. Here are a few examples: Playing against a 442 In the previous section I spoke about how you add players to your squad. I explained why I chose to prefer full backs and central midfielders above all else. There is a simple reason for this - it allows me to choose the right 11 for every match. And this is how I do things. I usually scout opposition teams study their strengths and set up to combat them. First I do my homework, with a bit of practice you should do this naturally but here I list out my thought processes if I were going to be playing against a 442. What I do is to develop what-if scenarios in my head. In matches I absolutely need to win, I do this diligently and I watch highlight reels of the AI's matches. Over time you should be able to work this into a habit and you will shorten this list. Ultimately you will be instinctive and won't be watching pkms anymore, instead you would have developed your own solutions embedded into multiple options you could use in the game. In the hands of a human manager, this tactic usually falls apart. In the hands of the AI, it ends up becoming a beast. A 442 has certain strengths, its balanced in all areas of the pitch without being too strong in any particular area. When playing against an AI 442, I study to find out how the attack patterns play out. I scour previous games, study the AI and if possible watch highlights of the AI matches. The goal here is to find out how they attack. If they attack with a double flank attack, ie both wingers attack with fullbacks coming in support. And, in the final third transition, the wingers cut inside and the fullbacks add width, then I need to work on breaking midfield transitions. Here isolation is the name of the game. You need to isolate their fullbacks from the midfielders and identify the playmaker in the system. If the tactic plays with a targetman/poacher combination, then it becomes even harder. If the targetman can hold up the ball in time for support to arrive, it usually means that we have ceded control of our final third. When I analyse the AI play, I look for clues.events that warn me about the AI's style, its these little things I look for before coming up with a plan on how to combat it. Once I've identified the clues, I start building a squad around combating it for my match. During the match itself, I will look for these clues again to see if I need to adapt Clue 1 When Full back enters opponent's final third their central players start entering dangerous positions Clue 2 When central midfielder on defend enters opponents half fullbacks give width in final third and wingers cut inside Clue 3 Midfielder on the ball is ice skating through the middle Clue 4 Midfielder on flank holding up the ball dragging players to him Clue 5 Midfielder on the right side of midfield is switching over to left side of midfield Clue 6 Where does the team win its 2nd ball, in the midfield consolidation phase, midfield penetration phase or does it prevent the opponent from entering midfield phase Clue 7 Who is the most influential link up player in the AI team? This may not neccessarily be the playmaker, it could even be the player who is almost always breaking up interceptions. Imagine Kante with Chelsea, he doesn't tackle much, but he is always around intercepting breaking up plays. Without him Hazard won't get the ball. Prevent Kante from interecepting and Hazard has to drop deeper. Clue 8 Set piece transitions - When defending a setpiece, do they defend with everyone? Do they have a fast counter? Who stays forward? Who stays near edge of box? Clue 9 When attacking set pieces, do they commit everyone? Do those who stay back have any particular weaknesses. Here we are looking out especially concentration, positioning, anticipation and acceleration. Now we need to apply all this into specific games, and that's the objective of the next chapter, how do we adapt to certain tactical systems and what do we look for in transitions. Believe me, there are huge clues in the game, and sometimes they come in quick succession.
  5. 5 points
  6. 5 points
    I find myself really wanting looping to crack it
  7. 5 points
    SETTING UP THE SQUAD FOR A SPECIFIC GAME. Now in the previous section I listed out all the clues, these will just give me a rough idea of what to look for, I also need to think of plans and what-if scenarios, I need to think about why these could happen so I can prepare my squad for the next match the best way possible. So its now time to drill deeper in each of those clues. When the full back enters the opponent's final third their central players start entering dangerous positions This is usually a sign for me that the AI is playing on a higher mentality than me. It could also mean that my team isn't adventurous enough to press them in the middle. Here I will look for signs of control: Is there a strong ball winner in midfield who seems to be intercepting balls? Do their central midfielders have too much time to control the ball? Are they playing with attacking fullbacks with support midfielders? If there is a strong ball winner on support, and my players are failing to win the 2nd ball, then I need to find out if my players are losing 50-50 challenges? Or whether they are too slow to react. In either case, this could either be an attribute mis-match (ie, their players are just too good) or we are just too deep and not aggressive enough in terms of mentality. I will avoid raising our closing down because it would be pointless if there is an attribute mismatch. And I will avoid increasing closing down if the opposition is playing structured. This can easily be seen if their players seem to be well positioned and seem to have no players around them. My first option would be to raise mentality and my 2nd option would be to increase defensive line settings. Remember that when you raise mentality your defensive line automatically goes up slightly, so you may not want to do both at the same time. If I were to go into a match with a team playing a strong attacking flank. I will need to identify which flank that is and place support players in midfield. If their players are only marginally better than mine then I will aim to isolate their fullbacks from the game. In this case I would use a system that plays like a 451, with 2 wide AMs and a flat 3 in midfield. The goal here would be to create a 3 man midfield that would put pressure on their 2 in midfield, my 2 attacking midfielders would play wide and apply pressure on their fullbacks. All attacking midfielders and the lone striker would have to close down much more. In this case we are created a 1v1 in the opponents third against the fullbacks and a 3v2 against their central midfield attack. At the back I would resist the urge to play an attacking duty on my fullback if the opposition winger has good acceleration, first touch, dribbling or off the ball. If the AI team has very strong fullbacks and or strong side midfielders then I would not play the 451, instead preferring to use a more conservative 4141. In this case I would identify the flank where all the attacks are coming from and choose to use roles that are more support in orientation. I would select players who play in my team who are tough, willing to go in for the challenge and be prepared to work hard to deny them a chance to work opportunites on the flanks Those who play on the flank would need to have determination, bravery, workrate, positioning, acceleration, tackling and marking. I would not shy away from putting a double fullback combination on one flank if I need to. This means that I would play a FB(S), WM(S) combination using a full back playing in the role of the WM. When a central midfielder on defend duty enters my half, its usually a cause of concern. This usually tells me that the AI has become more aggressive, or my side is too passive. It can also indicate that the AI has changed mentality. I will always have the formation widget of the AI up to indicate if it has changed mentality. When the CM(D) enters my half I usually react almost always, unless it's something I have planned for. If the AI has pushed that far, I may have let that happen so that I can hit them behind the spaces. In this case, I would certainly be looking for my attacking midfield players and strikers to be getting ready to bomb forward. In these kind of cases, I am planning for the AI to have a transition failure during the midfield penetration phase. This is a high-risk strategy, and requires your backline to have good mentals to pull off well. Here you would need to have a plan to use direct passing or apply direct passing selectively to creators. You would also need to have at least 2 attack duties prepared to attack the AI, preferably one is on the flanks. So when you win the ball, you need to see a deep lying player or a ball playing central defender hurl a through ball or a pass into space for the wide player to attack. He will be accelerating into the space to receive the pass and play the ball to the striker. If it comes off this is usually one of the best ways to score a goal. However there will be times when this may be a bad thing: You didn't plan on it, and the AI is in your half. Your can't seem to win the ball in midfield and the AI is building its transtions so easily that it moves from defence to midfield and into attack at will When this happens you need to make adjustments immediately. The first thing I may do is to target the CM(D) for closing down OI. This needs to be done if the CM(A) and the CM(D) seem to be far apart. Another option is to increase mentality. If you are on attacking mentality, then it's usually a sign that you may even need to consider changing systems. Here I may consider using a system that has a AM. The AM will always be around to pressurise the DM. Finally if you are playing with a deep defensive line, then push it up to normal. Observe if this helps in compressing available space. I find that a role/duty change in these kind of circumstances is usually the best first option to take. When a midfielder starts ice-skating through the middle, it becomes an issue if its a player like Eden Hazard. Anytime a player like that does that, it has the danger of opening up your Golden Zone, this is the zone immediately in front of your goal. It's also the area on the pitch where any play that is dicated by the AI usually creates massive issues. A player dribbling through the middle, has the potential of pulling players out of position. They can drag full backs in and pull central defenders out. When you start seeing this, trying to shut them is usually one of the hardest things in the game. If you are an LLM side or a side that has players that are weak, chances are you won't be able to stop him. Players with low determination, bravery and work rate, will simply not be able to keep up. We have several options, the first is the dirtiest. Tackle Hard Opposition Instruction If the player dribbling has low bravery, he will stop dribbling, if he is injury prone then he will pull out, if he doesn't he gets stretchered off. I won't deny it, I have done this many times. Use a DM-based system with a solid DM and tell the team to apply the OI show onto wrong foot. Now this can work sometimes, and it requires us paying attention. We need to observe which side of the pitch he usually dribble in from cos this instruction may send him further in or it pushes him wide so that any runs he makes to goal result in him shooting into the side netting. This is what we want to see. I usually use this in combination with a DM. Playing Very Fluid with the TI Stick to Positions Playing very fluid puts most of my team on the same mentality, and in the defensive third nearly every player there will be on the same mentality. If I find that this "ice-skater" is an issue, I go very fluid and counter, with a normal to slightly deep defensive line. This creates walls of players he needs to dribble past. I do not increase closing down on any central player, instead preferring to see them stand as barriers he needs to get around. Eventually they run out of options or get herded to areas like wide of goal which is my intention When doing this its always good to have someone in your defence prepared to hurl the ball into space for someone to latch onto for a counter attack. When central midfielder ice-skate past you, its usually a sign that the team is fairly high up the pitch. If the AI is playing flexible to very fluid, then its a perfect chance to hit them on the counter. You can also play structured and direct, but you will need to absolutely use a DM in this case, and be aware that you need more support players in your midfield centrally placed so they can track the other players. Playing highly structured and structured will encourage your defensive and support players to be more involved in defensive transitions if you are on defensive/counter mentalities. And if you are on attacking mentalities the support players may not get back in time to support the defence. Defenders at the back nearly always requires strong mentals regardless of shape setting, so make sure you have the kind of players at the back who can get themselves into the right positions. The only difference between structured and fluid systems will lie in the kind of transitions you have and the density of your defensive third transitions. When you see a midfielder on the flank holding up the ball, and dragging players around him its usually time to pay closer attention. These are players who have the potential of pulling your defenders wide, and this is what you don't want to see happening. In the modern game, the last thing any manager wants to see is a central defender being pulled wide. And attacking players who hold up the ball usually mean they are there for the purpose of being magnets. They draw people to them and this ends up unlocking the Golden Zone. Deciding on what to do depends on the kind of shape you are using, and this will affect the kind of players you call on to be part of the squad. If you are playing fluid and very fluid systems with any kind of defensive line, he's a major problem. Since you are fluid, instructions like tight marking will pull more than one player to him, so you want to avoid that. Tight marking is a form of zonal marking, the instruction targets a specific player and tells players to mark him tight when he enters their zones. When you play fluid and very fluid, these zones overlap which means that more than one player will tight mark him or close him down. So what do we do when we find an AM holding the ball? Ideally we want to stop the balls getting to him from the source. This usually means we look further afield to discover where the transition started from. Did the DM win the ball and get it to him? Are full backs always close by to support him? If I find myself up against a system that uses a WM as a playmaker then I will use a system that has a fullback and either an AM(S) or a WM(S). The former is more riskier than the latter. If I were to use an AM(S) I would be playing on a higher defensive line because I plan to break their transitions down before they get the ball into midfield, thus breaking it at source. If I am using a WM(S) its because I want more than one player around the playmaker. This means that those closing him down will be flank players this ensures that my central defenders do not over commit. Finally I will play on structured or flexible as a team shape. The choice of my shape will depend on how many get back into transition to defend and how it looks when the playmaker gets the ball. The players who end up playing in the WM(S) and FB(S) will need to be either full backs or midfielders who can mark, and have good positioning. If they do not commit to closing down passing lanes this will become an issue, so choosing the right players becomes vital Midfielders who move from one side of the pitch to the other are usually players who have roam from position. These are players I will track to see if they become important link players. They could be either roaming playmakers or box to box midfielders. And both can be dangerous to play against. Allowed to link up play the can be a problem. Here playing with a defensive midfielder becomes a good idea or playing with any midfield configuration which is greater than the AI's. So if the AI is using a 4312, with 2 box to box midfielders, it means both midfielders could potentiall link up play, it also means that they may not always be aroudn in the right place to defend. In this case I will need support duties in midfield to track these players and these support midfielders may need to close down more. Compressing available space by increasing the defensive line will also help to reduce the available space the midfielders have to exert their influence. Where does the team win its 2nd ball, in the midfield consolidation Phase midfield penetration phase or does it prevent the opponent from entering midfield phase? If we are failing to win the ball in our own half, and if 2nd ball battles are being won by the AI, then its usually a good sign that either we are too deep or we aren't strong enought to keep possession of the ball in midfield. We need to ascertain whether our side is failing to move the ball around or whether we are giving up too much space. When we look at transitions we are trying to see where the failure point is. Defence to Midfield - If we fail to pass the ball from defence to midfield, this could mean the AI is very high or our players have no mental and technical skills to move the ball up. We may need to go long and try and win the 2nd ball in the opponents half. Midfield consolidation to midfield penetration. If we move the ball through midfield but can't get set up to attack the AI, then this could be sign that players are too isolated, here we may need to change some roles around to bring them closer. Some roles in attack will need to be support duties and some duties in midfield may need to change to. If all has been done and it still fails then its a question of a players mental skills. Does he have the composure to move the ball around in midfield or doe the AI pressure force him into a turnover. Midfield Penetration to Attack - Transition failures here usually come down to a lack of support and passing options. Address either through a role and duty change first before electing to change shape or mentality. If your team was already moving the ball seamlessly from defence to attack and then something changes to stop it from happening, my suggestion is to track the highlight back to identify the point at which that happened. Now analyse whether it was the player himself or a lack of support. Choosing players to play in this case, boil down to having the right kind of mentally strong and technically proficient players. Here this could be a sign that players need good composure, balance, decisions and passing. Who is the most influential link up player in the AI team? This may not neccessarily be the playmaker, it could even be the player who is almost always breaking up interceptions. This example is similar to another one listed above about the CM(D), what we need to do in a game sometimes is to look for the most influential player and the only way this can be done is by looking at the game or the key pass combinations. Key pass combinations will usually show who is linked to the highest pass completing midfielder. We want to know who that player is. He may not be making sexy long diagonals but he could be doing a Fabregas and just being the ideal link up player to allow the team to maintain possession. Isolate him and you break the playmakers source. In this case, I would look at OIs to show this player onto wrong foot. Once again I am not targetting the playmaker but the player who is feeding the playmaker with balls. I could also push up my defensive line and compress space or I could play more fluid. I could also opt to flood the midfield area around this group with more players on support duty. These will influence the kind of players I will need and the formation I will play. Set piece transitions - If the AI looks like it it keeps only 2 men back for its set pieces I will opt to play a squad that features a pacey winger and stick him to stay forward. When we defend against this set piece we will also have one player stand on edge of box to pass the ball to him. This means that the player standing at the edge of the box needs passing, decisions. If he has the killer pass pmm then its even better. This influences who I select on the day for the game. When attacking set pieces I will make sure that I have one player who is technically strong standing with the taker of the set piece, this allows us to regain possession of the ball if its cleared in our direction. When selecting my squad on the day, deciding who will play in this role is just as important to me as deciding who my captain will be. When I am defending a lead, and its into the last 20 minutes, my set pieces change. Attacking set pieces become about possession control and I will keep at least 3-4 players back. And defensive set pieces keep everyone back. These are the kinds of events I track when observing the AI's pkms or highlights. If I am dead serious about winning the match, then my research is extensive. I leave no stone unturned to win the match. In LLM football, sometimes even after all the effort we end up losing. It's time like these that I will step back and analyse the game. Did we lose because of a fluke goal, deflected goal? Did we lose because the AI scored from a dead ball setpiece? Did we lose because the AI was simply too good in every phase of play? Sometimes we need to accept the result, we can't win every game, but we need to know why we lose. So if I lost because of any of the above reasons, then I just chalk it off. In fact I actually become happy if its only because of those reasons. If the AI fails to carve me open in open play then, we did very well. After all, we were the big underdog. You need to manage your own expectations. The next section will deal with how we build our squad up and how we go about developing a legacy. First though we need to get some of the essentials out of the way. A lot has changed in Training over the last few years, most of the sites out there, haven't updated the information yet, this is current as of FM17, if there are any changes I will update in a future guide. That was a lot of work, now you probably know why I go looking for Bobby Mimms to be my assistant manager, I can't do this for every game! That's a lot of things I need to spot and do research on, I have a few ideas, but I need to go see a game and then I can formulate a plan for my match. Coming up Developing a system of play
  8. 4 points
    Other Tactics - Diego Simeone - Marcelo Bielsa - http://www.fm-base.co.uk/forum/share-download-fm-17-tactics/363445-revolutionary-marcelo-el-loco-bielsas-3-3-3-1-a.html Thread Inspired by - Jorge Sampaoli's 4-2-3-1 Sevilla Welcome to another tactical discussion were I analyse one of Europes greatest manager and tacticans and implement it into FM, The Sampaoli band wagon has made it's way across the globe to Europe and is now regarded as one of the best managers in the continent with his fluid and precise systems, the theme of using very fluid tactics and a team of hard working and technical footballers to recreate the style of football made famous by the famous Marcelo "el loco" Bielsa and has had a strong influence on other great managers and their style of play. In this thread, I am going to analyse Jorge Sampaoli's 4-2-3-1 formation employed by his his current Sevilla team who currently sit 4th in La Liga. Sampaoli's style of play stems from the genius of Marcelo Bielsa and he is now regarded as one of the 5 disciples of his ideologies each playing a similar type of football with different players, different formations and in completely different leagues and footballing cultures, the most notable Pep Guardiola implementing this style in the Premier League. Key Characteristics to this style of play - A high defensive line to compress the space the opposition have to play Aggressive pressing all over the pitch to reduce the time the opposition have on the ball An attacking mentality where the teams main goal is to score goals Fluidity and rotation amongst players so the team are more flexible in transitions A controversial managerial personality and an active contribution on the touchline ------------------ Sampaoli, in an interview after a 0-3 lose to Uruguay despite having 73% possession, when the stat was revealed to him in an interview after the game Sampaoli compared it to trying to bed a woman - One night, I went to a bar, I was with a woman. We talked all night. We laughed, we flirted, I paid for several drinks of hers. At around 5am, a guy came in, grabbed her by the arm and took her to the bathroom. He made love to her and she left with him. That doesn’t matter, because I had most of the possession on that night. Jorge Sampaoli's Major Honours Universidad de Chile Torneo Apertura (2): 2011, 2012 Torneo Clausura: 2011 Copa Sudamericana: 2011 Chile International Team Copa América: 2015 The Philosophy Jorge Sampaoli has been extremely successful as manager of Sevilla to date currently sitting 4th place in La Liga, Sampaoli is an expert in unlocking opposition defences in a typical South American fashion allowing his team a lot of creative freedom and fluidity commanding players to keep the ball whilst being direct and passing with a purpose, due to his success Sampaoli has been linked with prestigious managerial jobs such as Argentina and Barcelona but currently this season has sworn his loyalty to Sevilla. Under Sampaoli Sevilla play a very fluid 4-2-3-1 formation which transitions to a 3-4-3, 5-3-2, 4-1-3-2 and many other different shapes throughout a game depending on opposition strength and the players at his disposal. His team try to control the space in the oppositions half with smart and precise player positioning, high intensity pressing whilst taking advantage of opposition mistakes is the main play maker in his side. Many people have misconceptions of this particular style of play, some people have a simplified script in their head that this is to keep possession play tiki taka football whatever the case may be ... But no successful manager plays to one simple script or encourage one set approach of football, Sampaoli even stating that he doesn't believe in formations as teams often play in unorthodox shapes as players carry out specific roles on the field, Sampaoli gives his players a certain amount of freedom which allows them to improvise on the field and able to think for themselves and deal with unexpected circumstances. Can not be emulated 100% accurately due to ME restrictions but includes all the fundimentals off Sampaoli's system. Sampaoli's Team shape and how they transition "Formation" Jorge Sampaoli one of the 5 disciples of Marcelo Bielsa integrates some of his ideologies into his playing style Highly creative, free-flowing football. Lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation - defence, midfield and attack highly integrated with each other. Playing style inspired by Marcelo Bielsa's influence also playing a style in the Chilean National Team. Half back drops in between centre backs, Centrebacks drift wide also known as a salida lavolpiana Wide Playmakers get into the channels and control the half spaces allowing wing backs to overlap N'zonzi the most important player in the squad dictates the tempo and distributes the ball to the wide areas. Attackers triangle leads the pressing whilst one of the front 3 comes deeper to recycle possession. pressing as a unit (Fluidity) superiority and taking advantage of quick transitions from defence to attack. Focus on pressing and unlocking opposition defences Team is usually structured horizontally with emphasis on rotation and adapting to press certain opponents High block defensive line controlling space.Emphasises on attacking the flanks with most of the goals coming from crosses. Playing Style. Highly creative, high tempo attacking football. Team working together, attacking and defending as a unit. exploiting opposition flanks attacking with direct forward passes. Higher Defensive Line & Pressing. Team Shape: Very Fluid ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mentality: Control The main evolution to playing style. Moving from Standard to a Control mentality offers several benefits: Higher collective mentality. Quicker tempo. More width. Higher defensive line. More aggressive closing down. Team Instructions Tempo left on normal as the control mentality is already aggressive enough team will look to attack and a high tempo will lead to us forcing attacks and giving the ball away. Fairly wide - make the pitch wider allowing more space to play aiding our formation and exploiting the flanks. Prevent short GK Distribution, Press more and Slighly Higher Defensive Line - Playing on a control mentality already increases our defensive line and aggression towards pressing, these TI's compliment eachother and aid our high press. Roam from position - Allows us to be fluid in our play and unlock defences, team works for each other and covers for another players mistakes. Be More Expressive - Adds extra vision and flair to our game playing a Jorge Sampaoli style with flair in abundance. Dribble Less - I feel playing on a control mentality with the roles included in our tactic aim to run at the defence to often and ruins some of our attacks. Whipped Crosses - Sampaoli's side usually fire low crosses into the box when at the byline and whipped balls from deep due to the lack of height in the box. Look for overlap - Increase amount of runs the wingbacks do and allow them to get a cross in our a cutback to one of the playmakers. Player Instructions - GK/ - Distribute to Centrebacks,More risky passes WB/A - Close down more BPD/D - Dribble more * encourages centrebacks to build from the back and drive forward* BPD/C - Dribble more CWB/A - Close down more HB/D - Tackle Harder, More Direct Passes, More Risky Passes BBM/S - Close down more ***Must set position swap with Half back*** AM/S - Close down more, Get further forward, Roam from position Left AP/A - Close down more, Tackle Harder, Cross from By-line, Stay Wider, Get further forward Right AP/A - Close down more, Tackle Harder, Get further forward, Cross from by-line DLF/S - Close down more, Tackle Harder, Roam from position, Move into channels Opposition Instructions Encourages pressing all over the field with emphasise on winning the ball on the flanks and high up the field Minimises opponents potential to exploit certain positions with hard tackling and showing onto weaker foot. Minimises time strikers and wingers have on the ball. Tactical Analysis - The build up Ball playing defenders push out wide offering a passing option to other players The half back drops deep into a CB spot creating a 3 man defence Wingbacks get further forward into advanced positions. In the build up Iborra and N'zonzi rotate in their roles, one takes the half back role and sits as a central defender whilst the other gets further forward and offers a passing option whilst the wingbacks take advanced positions upfield and provide width. The same concept takes place only the players have swapped positions this concept which was mentioned earlier on is called a salida lavolpiana Here is the concept in action Rotation In attack Sevilla play two wide AP's on who stays closer to the flank and one who roams into the centre of the field, in these 2 seperate games it is Nasri and Jovetic vacating these positions, notice how the wingbacks have so much space to put a cross in, an overload is created in the centre of the field and the opposition full backs come out of position to press in turn leaving their position completely unvacated for the Wingbacks to run into. The same thing takes place only on seperate flanks Notice how many goals have come from situations such as this, almost 1 goal a game. Defending from the front Sampaoli's side have many, many different shapes and positions to press and defend from the front most unachievable to include within FM so there is no need to go into too much detail, but one common them in Sampaoli's pressing is having 3 men charge down the ball and another 4 waiting to either recycle possession, press forward if the ball breaks through the first line or surge forward on the attack. Here is an example of this - Front 3 charge down the ball whilst the other 4 remain in shape to come and recycle possession when the ball has been lost Here Sevilla have pinned the opposition back into their own half, the ball has went out for a throw in and the same positional co-ordinations are present. Set-Pieces Offensive Corners Sevilla usually have 5/6 Men in the box with 2 outside, sometimes the AMC in this photo goes short depending on the score of the match, A fast fullback and a defensively solid player is usually left at the half way line to make sure no opposition players can break away with the ball. Defensively Sevilla usually have either 7/8/9 Men in defence depending on the score, to put emphasise on counter attack one man leaves the post with 2 central players waiting on the half way line, this usually creates a 3 vs 2 on the the opposition defence usually a striker and the CAM left forward with a Winger waiting to carry the ball. **Player Prefered Moves **- The Wing Back - Gets forward whenever possible, Plays one Twos, Knocks Ball past opponent The Complete Wing Back- Gets forward whenever possible, Places shots, Plays one Two's, Knocks ball past opponent The Ball Playing Defenders- Tries long range passes, Switches ball to opposite flank The Half Back - Most important position in the team Useful PPM's = Dictates Tempo, Long range passes, Shoots from distance (Longshots atleast 14) The Box to Box Midfielder- Comes deep to get ball, Arrives late in opposition area, shoots from distance, Moves into channels The Attacking Midfielder- Tries Killer balls, ***Comes deep to get ball***, Shoots from distance The Advanced Playmakers- Moves into channels, Plays one Twos, Comes deep to get ball The Deep Lying forward- Plays one Twos, gets into opposition area, cuts inside from both flanks Overall Team Shape Shape in Attack Results Tactic tested for 2.5 Seasons with Osasuna and half a season with Sevilla OPTIONAL DOWNLOAD ( Leave thread in Discussion forum please!) 4-2-3-1 3-4-3 Sevilla Sampaoli _8616D29E-9F63-4C19-A9B4-E0B150158D75.fmf
  9. 4 points
    Anticipation, to know when the kettle is going to be finished so you don't waste time Precision, so he can hit the cup when he pours Vision, so he can see when you need more coffee/tea. Flair - I like it done with style. Balance...Okay I'm stopping this now. A must have, however: Ability to hum lullabies with magical motivating effects.
  10. 3 points
    Greetings Everyone ! As far as I remember there always have been discussions about should FM players be able to set different shapes for their team during attacking and defensive phases. Some people have been saying that if something like that were possible then it would be very unrealistic because in real life teams don’t play like that and so on… For me, the answer to that question is obvious and I want to show you some examples from real life that might change some people opinion on that matter. Tuesday, Apr 11 2017 1st leg of 1/4 Champions League Juventus vs Barcelona 3 : 0 Juventus' defensive shape during the match: Here’s how Juventus defended vs Barca during that match. As you can see at the screenshots below Juventus’ shape when it was defending looked like a compact 4-4-2 formation Juventus' attacking shape during the match: Now here’s how Juventus’ shape looked when it was attacking vs Barca during that match. When Juventus was attacking during that match its shape looked like a 4-2-3-1 formation where Dybala had free role and he could be anywhere he wanted : the left flank/ the center/the right flank. Sunday, Apr 23 2017 El Clasico Real Madrid vs Barcelona 2 : 3 Barcelona's defensive shape during the match: Here’s how Barcelona defended vs Real Madrid during the El Clasico that happened yesterday. As you can see at the screenshots below Barcelona’s shape when it was defending looked like a compact 4-4-2 formation Btw, Barcelona always defends that way in Liga BBVA during this season when it plays a 4 defenders. Barcelona's attacking shape during the match: Now here’s how Barcelona’s shape looked when it was attacking vs Real Madrid during the El Clasico. Btw, Barcelona’s shape looked like a fluid asymmetric formation where Messi had free role and he could be anywhere he wants to be. Barcelona always attacks that way in Liga BBVA during this season when it plays a 4 defenders tactic. Conclusion: Can something like that be simulated in Football Manager 17? No, unfortunately, it can’t be simulated in FM and due to this the realism of the ME greatly suffers because it doesn’t allow to simulate the way teams play in real life. It’s obvious that in real life players takes different instructions where they should be and what they should do during many different phases such as: position attacking phase, counter attacking phase, pressing phase, defensive phase and some other phases. There’s only way to make the ME looks realistically is to give FM players an ability to instruct their teams what to do during those different phases. With the tools that we have in FM it’s just possible to simulate the way that teams plays in real life.
  11. 3 points
    I enjoyed watching Sevilla succumb to a 2-0 defeat away at Leicester
  12. 3 points
    Thread closed. It is past its sell-by date and has become counterproductive and divisive.
  13. 3 points
  14. 3 points
    Every year we get this thread. Can't believe there's still folk that don't know about it.
  15. 3 points
    Hey guys, A couple of weeks back thiagotietze posted a tip on the forum about how to make FM run faster. This gave me the idea to merge all the little tips and tricks I've found over time into one post. Employing these things allows me to Play a game and exit it Browse the internet for a minute The game has processed and is ready for the next game to be played I posted it to Twitter the other day and got a great reaction so thought you guys might like it as well. For betting formating, screenshots etc. the tips can also be read here. # 1. Change rendering mode This is the simple and most important step for speeding up FM and will make your game run much faster. What it does, is that it will make the screen load faster every time you click on something. It does so by disabling some animations, but there really is no difference in how the game looks. The way to get the game to run faster is the following: Go to preferences and then the interface tab In rendering mode, it should read “GPU assisted” Change this to “software” Click confirm and you are ready to enjoy the game even more This is really easy to do and it makes the game much more enjoyable on low-end computers The tip is so good I really think it should have been the default setting and it puzzles me why it isn’t… anyway, on to the next tip! # 2. Change detail level One of the things FM spends the most time on is simulating all the games in which you do not play. While you cannot speed up the simulation time of a game, you can decrease the amount of games that are simulated. To do so you have to: Click the FM icon Click detail level This will take you to the detail level Here you can change “set international competition level" and "set club competition details levels to". I recommend changing these from default to minimum. # 3. Decrease number of leagues / use smaller database One of the easiest ways to increase the speed of the game is to reduce the number of leagues or use a smaller database. This is naturally something you select when you start the game. To ensure the game runs smooth you want to aim for +4 star in estimated game speed. My recommendation on a slow computer is to load the league you want to play in, and if you want to go good old journeyman on your FM game later, you can always add the league you want to play in. # 4. Switch off 3d graphics By default, FM will show matches in 3d. On slower computers, it can take a long time to load the 3d engine and you can significantly improve performance by switching it off. The way to do this is to head to: Preferences and then the match tab Untick the box “View matches in 3D” Click confirm I for one am old-school so I also prefer to watch the games in 2D. However, if you enjoy the 3D graphics and want to keep these you can improve performance by unchecking non-game effects where especially the stadium effects take a toll on your computer. # 5. Only watch key highlights By default in FM, the highlight mode will be set to extended. This means that games can quickly take 10 minutes. One of the first things I do on any Football Manager save is to go to preferences and change this. Go to preferences and then the match tab Under Highlight Mode change to “Key” Click confirm This will make the game show less highlights and only show the ones where there is a goal or it was close. # 6. Send your assistant to press conferences I for one am about as happy with the press in FM as Jose Mourinho is in real life. So, to avoid these, I just send my assistant. Instead of doing this every single time, you can send your assistant by default: Go to staff and responsibilities Set you assistant to go to press conferences **A word of caution:** This does have a gameplay effect and you should only send someone, who knows how to handle it (being media-friendly helps!). With that said, I rarely find press conferences to have a large effect and I have been very successful without handling any press conferences myself. # 7. Learn shortcuts This is actually the only tip in this post, where you have to do something by yourself. And that is to learn some shortcuts, which will dramatically increase the speed of the game. You can go to: Preferences and then click shortcuts to see an overview of the shortcuts. But from that it’s kinda hard to figure out what’s important so I’ll give you the top 10 FM shortcuts here (for the English language version of the game) Space bar: Clicks continue for you Ctrl+s: Saves the game Middle mouse scroll wheel click: Go to home screen Backspace or left arrow or back click: Go to previous screen Ctrl+f: Search F3: Go to squad screen F4: Go to inbox F7: Go to scouting F10: Go to schedule F11: Go to club information Ctrl+t: Go to tactics Learn these 10 bad boys, and you’ll speed up your game navigation dramatically. # 8. Use caching to decrease page loading times This is something that works in the background and will make FM run faster in general. And by default, it will be checked, however, if you have loaded skins you might have unchecked it. What you want to do is the following: Go to preferences and then the interface tab In the bottom left corner you have “appearance Make sure the box “use caching to decrease page loading times” is ticked Click confirm # 9. Delete or rename inbox file - Should now be fixed after the latest update Ever noticed your inbox in FM getting incredibly slow? The reason for this is that the game is loading a large file. To dramatically increase your inbox speed do the following: a) Shut down FM b) Go the the location below >On PC: C:Users[Username]AppDataLocalSports InteractiveFootball Manager 2017Preferencesversion 3 >On Mac:~/Library/Application Support/Sports Interactive/Football Manager 2017/Preferences/version 3/ c) Delete or rename the file inbox_scrollbar_state.xml What you want to do is to to rename the file “inbox_scrollbar_state.xml”. I ususally rename it to “inbox_scrollbar_state_old1.xml” and the next one “old2” and so forth. This ensures if the game doesn’t work properly you can rename it to its original name again. d) Reload FM and enjoy your fast inbox Thank you to thiagotietze on the SI forums for discovering this tip. # 10. Enable Continue Game Timeout I saved one of the best for last. And especially if you play in windowed mode and browse reddit while FM processes, this trick will do wonders for your game. Originally developed for network games, this will make you go from one game to the next without stopping in between. Continue game timeout basically clicks continue for you. And if you enable it, the game automatically goes forward, unless you must make a decision. The way to enable it is this: Go to preferences and then the interface tab Under processing it says continue game timeout By default, it will say disabled. I have it set at 2 seconds, but you can also set instant, 5 seconds and 10 seconds Click confirm and you are ready to enjoy the game even more I can’t state how much of a difference this makes as it will basically take you from one game to the next. **A word of caution on continue game timeout** I do not use it when the transfer window is open. And the reason is very simple. If there is a week between two games, the game will likely simulate until it reaches a decision point. The most common decision point is the line-up before a game. So, if another team bids for a player you might want to buy, you will not see this until you have to play the next game and he might already be transferred to another team… … which I don’t want to happen. So to sum up... How to make Football Manager run faster: 1. Change rendering mode 2. Change detail level 3. Decrease number of leagues 4. Switch off 3d graphics 5. Only watch key highlights 6. Send your assistant to press conferences 7. Learn shortcuts 8. Use caching to decrease page loading times 9. Delete or rename inbox 10. Enable continue game timeout Hope you guys liked it and if you did, please leave a comment below. Or maybe you have a tip that I've missed? Either way, please leave a comment below. For me tips, trick and guides you can follow me on Twitter
  16. 2 points
    another inconsistency that bugs the FM is that all players have their (natural) positions according to thier positioning in the attacking phase. So to create i.e. 4-4-2 defensive shape one would need to create the tactic that has majority (of wide players/attacking midfielders) playing out of position.
  17. 2 points
    I agree with the OP but I think the issues are deeper rooted in that the defensive side of the tactics creator is overlooked almost entirely. I don't want to sound like a moaner, but the inability to create a press in any form more complex than how much closing down each player does highlights this. Situational pressing, for instance, is impossible to create but is a huge part of modern football. Closing down is a catch all that encompasses all kinds of player behavior that we have no control over. Whenever pressing is discussed with regards to FM in any sort of depth, it is usually only achievable by using certain shapes and occasionally someone who has a deep understanding of football and coaching sometimes gets something working by by using complex opposition instructions. But this is rarely noticed and could well just be a result of good fortune. The key thing here though, which whilst annoying for people who want to dig into things, would probably be way over the head of the average FM player who just wants to play as a big team and sign Neymar and smash everyone.
  18. 2 points
    I don't think the media in the game will ever feel "real" unless it starts being presented to me in a way that mirrors real life more directly. I think there are two elements to this: 1. How it looks, 2. What it is/What it is about. Over the years I have created loads of stupid things like adverts for Gillette with my newgen's face in, an album cover for my squad's cup final song, and so on and so on. Here are some other examples of similar things created by a guy called Jonny Gabriel, and you have to check out his site before continuing reading this. http://jonnygabrielregens.blogspot.co.uk/ In Jonny's examples, some of which I've put below, he has mimicked a real life outlet directly. For legal reasons (even though other games copy twitter exactly, etc) SI would need to create some fictional outlets that just appeared to the eye as very similar. The companies that sponsor clubs in the game i.e. "An electricty provider" should be given fictional names and logos (obviously moddable,) and the existing media should also have it's corresponding logos. Premise The game should use the faces of Newgens (among other things) to generate media from templates. The Social Media Tab would become just 'Media,' and would have a simple summary of the current level of media interest in a variety of issues involving me or my club (for example "winning streak," or "manager sacking?") in the style of the Scouting Knowledge bars. If the Media Interest bar for a certain topic got to a certain level, then select bits of media about me and my club may start appearing in the 'World and Nation Media' subsection, which would have a couple of Jonny Gabriel style media items to represent the biggest stories in football right now. Even if my club had no sufficient media interest to appear in the World and Nation Media, I could still view it at all times to keep up with the latest stories. Templates Examples 1. A red and white Video Tube site 2. A blue and white social media site 3. A basic red-top format and a basic broadsheet format 4. A basic advert/billboard format 5. A basic SSN style pundits with a Breaking News Bar format 6. A basic "Press conference" format, (one or two people at a table in front of microphones, e.g for new signings.) For the fake Youtube items I would see something a bit like Jonny Gabriel has created for his game below. The title and view counts are self explanatory. Linked to the title would be a 'Scene,' in the big red rectangle. The scene would be one of a number of things that would all use Newgen people in the relevant shirts etc. For example one of the Scenes would be a fanTV interview setup like above, with relevant titles being any of the comments from the existing social media section "We shouldn't contemplate selling Player!" or "It's time for Manager to go!" The view count would represent the overall popularity of the video as well as the like count showing roughly how much agreement there was with the sentiment (with exceptions.) Other Scenes could be: - Random newgen fan in their room doing a vlog. Possible titles off the top of my head could be "My new song for Player X" or "What Manager should have done against Team Y." etc - On pitch moment featuring either a collection of players in a relevant kit or a single player celebrating, etc. Possible titles could be "Player X best goals and skills 22/23." or "Team Y: The Giant Awakens," (after a landmark win), or "Player Z HORROR tackle on Player Y," etc etc. Or similarly you could have a player on a stretcher with the title about him missing a certain cup final etc. -Training Ground scene featuring a certain team, titles could be "CLUB X Official| Last training session before Milan!" or "CLUB X Official| Player Y officially returns to training." - Or a scene showing a long retired player on the pitch, with the title being a tribute to that player as a legend. For the fake twitter , there are a lot of VERY interesting possibilities. Firstly, look at this piece of genius, again by Jonny Gabriel: The first Social Media "Character" that should be introduced is some kind of statto like OptaJoe. When the Champions League final is about to happen, the game should pick an interesting statistic and have the "Statto" character tweet it in the World Media section, like above. Secondly, a large part of this idea is the game "playing along" with me that it is real life. What better way to do this than by having Football Manager referenced within the game? Here are a couple of examples that go along with the above which I've hastily created. Every year around October/November the odd tweet from Miles should appear hyping the release of that year's version of FM. He may say other things as well, and what exactly that is should be up to him and take the form of an easter egg. Also along these lines, at some point in the future (if you are successful enough) you should get a news item inviting you to have a conversation with Miles, which starts a typical FM conversation in which he asks you if you would like to appear on the cover of the upcoming edition of FM. If you say yes then at some point Miles will tweet the cover of FM that has your face on it. One of the options when responding to Miles should be "This is real life, not Football Manager, and I take my job too seriously to accept your offer." The FM game cover then automatically goes to whoever your most disliked manager is at that time. Sometimes the best FM newgen of that year would be a Cherno Samba. Anyway, If not FM Scout, then why not give some in-game publicity to the SI affiliates? Have Guide To Football Manager tweet about advice for playing the game, and have the link direct to their current site. Another thing that is badly needed is players and ex-players tweeting. To save time here you can actually not bother translating anything out of more than one language. I would like it if I signed a Japanese mega-star who spoke no English and then saw this in the World Media The next one was the Newspapers. The template would consist of something that appeared like an existing newspaper, again with space for a picture or "scene" and a headline. Use the name world play that is already in the game, and the existing media headlines as the basis for these. The "scene" would usually be a match situation, but could be a particular player after a spectacular performance, or if he has a big transfer being rumoured. In the case of Newgens, let the front pages be accessible through scandal. For example the "scene" being a picture of a particular player with "censored" written across the eyes. Very hasty example: Another possibility is some kind of fake wikipedia. This is another clip from Jonny Gabriels regens, which is how he has recorded his champions league run. Perhaps imitating this exactly isn't possible, but I find this picture really compelling. I can really imagine browsing my FM world in this format, just because it feels real. Another element that could suit the Wiki format is Biographies. They are already dynamic and change as the game goes on, and again I think they would look good if they were more like the page I saw when I searched for Mourinho/Klopp etc on Wikipedia. As a silly idea, why not have certain humiliating situations like a big defeat or a front page scandal trigger a tweet come up saying "Has anyone read Johnny Gabriel's wikipedia page recently? HAHAHA" at which point when you read your wikipedia page (biography) it is filled with stupid information that mocks you by mentioning the recent humiliating events. Alternatively, if you were to do something amazing like win your country the World Cup, then a similar tweet would come up and this time your wikipedia page (biography) would be filled with Chuck Norris facts with your name in place of his. I can see how that last on isn't really about the media but it's still interesting imo.
  19. 2 points
    I hope that someone from SI will read this thread because Totalfootballfan discribed very well one of the main issues FM and I agree with every word he wrote.
  20. 2 points
    We got a pretty sparkling welcome to the New Firm. How about that @Benjoe?
  21. 2 points
    a good scout would have searched first
  22. 2 points
    I was being playful. Of course Palace aren't terrible but everywhere he goes he takes over an unbalanced squad with players that have been written off by their own fans as wastes of money, morale on the floor, very little defensive organisation and very little idea going forward and in a very short period of time he manages to get the absolute maximum out of that group of players. He has them resolute at the back, he has them scoring at the other end and he has them able to control the game the way that they want rather than the opposition. I'm sure there is a lot of psychological stuff that goes on but there must be a secret to his "percentages" football where teams in woeful form suddenly look like coherent, balanced football teams capable of coming away from any game with at least a point.
  23. 2 points
    I know exactly what you mean by FM'd. It's very annoying! I'll make the switch to the updated version when I hopefully get on later and see how it goes as I have had 2 results go against me where I was clearly the better team. I'll let you know how I get on!
  24. 2 points
    Baron and Rammalc, thanks for your feedback. The thing that made me pull the tactic was the fact that more than any other tactic I've created, this one seemed to get FM'd the most. Dominate games, only for my opponents to score with their only shot of the game. I know this is hard coded into the match engine where your world class strikers are not very clinical and the AI's average strikers are deadly assassins but when using this tactic, things went up a notch and it was happening almost every game, which led me to believe there may be a flaw within the tactic that is causing this to happen continually....... of course, it could just be that I was being extremely unfortunate and thus getting paranoid. Still, what's done is done and I've reverted to using regular wing backs instead of IWBs and have updated PUNISHER with a two set tactic, attacking and standard. You start with the attacking version when pre-match favourites at home and standard version for ALL other matches. Attacking is highly aggressive and designed to beat teams who come up to your place and park the bus. Standard adopts a more sensible and balanced approach without being aggressive or overly cautious and can also be used to see out games. All player instructions are the same for both versions, the difference is in the team instructions. Tactic usage is a little bit more complicated than just using one or the other as it's dictated by the match situation and what your objective is so I've tried to simplify it by advising on what to do in the following scenarios...... Pre-match favourite at home - start with attacking. All other matches - start with standard. Do NOT switch tactics until half-time, after which I would advise the following............ You need to score (home and away) - attacking. Started on attacking (at home), are ahead but want more goals and don't feel the opponent is good enough to get back into the game - attacking. All other scenarios - standard. NOTE: Make sure to keep the opponent formation box open in the corner of the screen and set your wing backs to support duty WHENEVER your opponent goes to an attacking style unless you need to score, in which case leave them on attack duty. Also, when switching tactics, any booked players that you have set to 'ease off tackles' will automatically revert to 'tackle harder' so will manually need to be re-set again to 'ease off tackles'. Needless to say, majority of the time you will be using the standard version. Bear in mind that the attacking version is there just to break down teams who park the bus or when you are chasing the game in the second half...... your feedback is valuable so please let us know how you get on.
  25. 2 points
    I'm of the *ahem* firm belief that Scandinavian sides should have automatic qualification to international tournaments.
  26. 2 points
  27. 2 points
    Geez man, if it was that bad, I'd shave. With acid.
  28. 2 points
    You can add columns to the squad view & one of the options is Contracts>Appearance Fee. To open the menu right click on the column header row & select insert row or customise view, alternatively press the '+' icon to the right of the column header row.
  29. 2 points
    He has a ppm of "tries to play his way out of trouble", which I think means, he elbows pitiful defenders to the ground as opposed to dribbling his way out of trouble
  30. 2 points
    No one knows if they're any good or not as their match reports keep changing.
  31. 2 points
    First you get the sugar...then you get the power...then you get the women...
  32. 2 points
    I think the player search is pretty realistic ... the more scouting you do the more players you have in your database and the more knowledge you have about those players. Clubs use scouts and analysts to create their own player databases - then can use filters and searches to specify certain profiles. Southampton have been particularly successful doing this. They create a profile of each of their academy players... then where there are gaps in type of player they need, they use the scouting network to create global databases... and from that database find the missing player. That way they always have academy players that can slot into the first team. More importantly, when they need to sign someone, they have their targets identified before they approach for their player even comes in. i.e. they signed Oriol Romeu before selling Wanyama just because they knew they would lose Wanyama sooner or later. Tadic was on a list of replacements for Lallana two or three seasons before Lallana was sold.
  33. 2 points
    the formation exists in real life but it isn't as popular as in FM since in real life teams defend much better than in FM where flooding the midfield equals possession dominance.
  34. 2 points
    I call this the Zaha Principle.
  35. 2 points
    For some reason I'm imagining him being really bitter in his reports. "This lad's good, didn't make a senior NT appearance at 15 though, did he?" "This one's worth a punt, even if Real Madrid wouldn't pay him sixty grand a week at 16...." "I don't think there'd be a media campaign to get this guy on FM, he'll do though, I suppose."
  36. 2 points
    Cristiano is on the pitch, crying. It's over. His personal camera crew, capturing every moment. I'll say this, his plastic surgeon is getting some great advertisement tonight. He doesn't look a day over 19!
  37. 2 points
    It is quite true though- fitness training focuses on physical attributes. The reason it is best used at a heavy level in the pre-season is for injury reduction, but then again, heavy training in anything during the season can up your injury risk. What the game really needs is a pre-season training routine that work primarily on condition and match fitness, and secondarily focuses on stamina and perhaps natural fitness. It should be something that you can use in conjunction with friendly matches to get your players ready for the season. I know the devs are looking into the training module about how it can be changed for the better, so hopefully we'll see some improvements in this next version.
  38. 2 points
    Hard tackling and 'get stuck in' instructions are there as intimidation techniques in my opinion. It can lead to opposition flair players going missing, which is what you want. If a player has a low bravery attribute, going in hard on him can ruffle him up and stifle his effectiveness. Hard tackling also allows your better tacklers to win more tackles and if done high up the pitch by your midfielders, can result in fouls but also stop a potential counter attack so there's lots of advantages. Obviously, the downside is your team will commit more fouls in dangerous areas but if the tackling is set to standard, then the downside of that is the flair players can really get into the game and dominate, as well as your team's ability to win the ball back being reduced.......... so there's pros and cons but personally, I feel it's more beneficial to use hard tackling. Obviously as you say, once a player picks up a yellow, you need to manually set him to 'ease off tackling'. Once you do that, sure he'll win less tackles but on average and at a rough guess, I'd say your average player will get one yellow every 4 games so out of 360 minutes played, he'll only be set to 'ease off tackles' for 45-90 of those minutes so it's worth it I reckon You must have a very strong team and it definitely gets the best out of such teams as I found in my Man United and Wycombe saves. The new simplified version will take a less gung-ho/more measured approach and will be more balanced, more possession orientated and more universally suitable for all teams as the current tactic is a bit too attacking in my opinion where lesser players just can't pull off the tactic, so to speak...... will definitely be uploading by the weekend at the latest as I'm quite happy with it in testing
  39. 2 points
    Many players are wrong. It is a complete myth that both ambition and determination assist the development of young players to any great degree. What I would say however is that you need to move away from thinking about the name of a players personality, and instead look at what actually makes up that personality. To give you a few examples. (And please remember that these templates are old now and out of date, but they at least give you an idea). Balanced. A player with a balanced personality doesn't have a balanced set of hidden mental attributes at all. It's a really negative personality in my opinion rather than a middle of the road one or an average one. It's not middle of the road, it's poor. It's not average, it's bad. Balanced Pro 1-14, Det 1-14, Amb 1-14, Loy & Spo 1-14 That being said, if we look at the above template, it's possible that a player could have Pro 14 and Det 14 and while not brilliant, that's certainly not awful, (so there are of course exceptions. If we look at the average attribute within the above template then it gives us the following. Pro 7 Det 7 Amb 7 Loyalty 7 Sportsmanship. 7. There is absolutely no discussion that we would not want a player with those attributes and that is an "average" balanced player. In the main though, a Balanced personality is a bad personality, (in my opinion). The next thing to think about are the Ambitous personalities themselves. Very Ambitious Amb 20, Loy 1-9, Det 1-17 Amibitous Amb 16-19, Loy 1-9, Det 1-17 Unambitious Amb 1-5, Loy 11-20 Now the first thing that jumps out at me here is that there seems to be some sort of link here between Ambition and Loyalty. Where Ambition is high, then Loyalty will be low. Right? No. Not right. It's possible to be Ambitious but not be "labelled" either Ambitious or Very Ambitious. These are just "labels" that we need to get away from accepting at face value and instead think about what exactly they mean. A Very Ambitious label means that a player has Ambition of 20, Loyalty between 1-9 and Determination between 1-17. Without going into media handling and some of the other hidden attributes, it also means that we don't know what ther other attributes are. They could theoretically have Pro of 20, but they aren't called Pro or Model Pro or anything else. (That's an extreme example I know, but I just want you to get away from thinking of the personalities in terms of their names, because they are misleading). Once again, you are looking at the label that a player has been given rather than what the label actually means. You are assuming that because a player has a particular label, then that is all they are and they can't be anything else. Fairly Determined Det 15-20, Pro 1-14, Spo 5-20, Pre 1-16 Where is the mention of low ambition or high loyalty in that? It's not there. You might be able to delve deeper looking at the media handling style, but there is nothing about F.Det as a personality that suggests Amb or Loy will either be high or low. It just isn't factored into the build-up of the player. Resolute Pro 15-20, Det 15-20, Pre 1-16 Spo 5-20 Again, there is no mention of either Amb or Loy. Driven Det 20, Amb 10-20 Ok, so now we have an idea about Amb, but it's actually quite a big window in that it could be anything between 10-20. The other thing to ask yourself is.... what if a player is both Ambitious and Loyal?......... Who says that it's impossible? Very Loyal Loy 20, Amb 6-7, Det 6-20 Loyal Loy 18-19, Amb 6-7, Det 6-20 It's not quite right I would agree, but in SI's defence, they are sort of imitating real life which is their ultimate goal. What they are after is realism after all. If I am managing in Iceland, (where I am now), or in Gibraltar where I have managed in the past, then even if I go and win the Champions League, then the chances are we will still be playing in a domestic structure which is significantly behind the likes of England, Spain and Germany. Your situation is a little different in that I think you are managing in France. This should mean that while you are closer to the top end of the scale, you are still not considered the power-house of European football in the way that the other 3, (or even Portugal), might be. I remember winning the World Cup with San Marino, beating Italy in the Final and then seeing players with dual Nationalities still opt to play for Italy rather than San Marino. I was the #1 ranked Nation in the World, (I think), yet something in the game still classed Italy as a bigger footballing Nation than San Marino, (which of course it is). What I would say is that while there are rankings in this area, it's also more than that. There are various ways to "grade" things within the game and this is just one of them. There is reputation of course, and this is particularly true of domestic structure reputation which is often ignored, but there are also other things under the hood that we are either unaware of or simply just don't understand how they interact with areas of the game that we do understand, (or think we understand). Do I know what the implications of the following are for example? Importance. I think this is how important the game of football is within the Nation. That's great. It seems pretty straightforward, but what I don't understand for example is what the in-game implications are of this within my game. Let's go back to my San Marino example for a minute. Is it possible that because San Marino have a low score in this area, that it will affect a players decison-making on who he is going to play for? The truth is that I don't know, but it certainly seems a reasonable assumption. Developed can be Developed, Developing and Third World. While this isn't going to be a driving factor in your current save or mine, I certainly don't understand what the implications of this are within the game. Economic Factor. I can't even begin to guess at this. The standard of living within the Nation possibly? The implications here are huge. FA Financial Power. No idea. Honestly no idea. Youth Rating. I think I understand how this works, but to be honest it's all guess-work and assumptions based on guess-work of other people. The truth is I don't know 100%. I guess what I am saying is that you need to stop thinking within such rigid boundaries with regards to what is and isn't true within the game. Player personalities is just the very tip of the Iceberg.
  40. 2 points
    Its not just about beating them with whichever team you are managing, its about how other AI teams get on against them as well. I'm on my 3rd save on FM17 and it has been noticeable how well they've done in each save and I haven't managed in England in any of those saves. So far its looking better on this save with them having finished 2nd, 5th & 3rd but it does normally take around 3/4 seasons for them to start the flow of trophies.
  41. 2 points
    In real life football there are many examples of players who are influenced by the managers they met at their clubs. Take for example the influence Mourinho has on his players.He demands his players to really form a strong team and there is very little room for selfish players. Ofcourse there are many, many examples of players who just don't fit at a new manager's way of wanting to play football. And those players, even great players sometimes, just have to find the exit door at a club because they don't fit the manager. To stick with the Mourinho example: Juan Mata, 2 times player of the year, had to leave Chelsea because he didn't work hard enough for Mourinho's likings. But there is also the other side of a manager's preferred playing style and the players adapting to it. Some players who at first glance would not be qualified as hardworking players have changed their game because they believed in the manager's philosophy. Take Wesley Sneijder. At Ajax and Real Madrid he was a technically gifted playmaker. And at Mourinho's Champions League winning Inter Milan? He still was a technically gifted playmaker, but he also worked his arse off in favour of the team. That is something he wasn't capable of at Ajax or Real Madrid. In Football Manager it is not possible to influence your team's players as a manager in the way Mourinho does. For example, a very important quality like Workrate is very difficult to influence in Football Manager. You can't really train it. And you can certainly not influence it the way Mourinho can at his squads. Do you want to play with a cohesive team, but your star player hasn't got the qualities for that? Too bad, you have to sell him because you can't try to convince him to behave the way you want him to. Considering this I would suggest two types of interactions with the players to make it possible to interact even more with the players and the team than possible at the moment. 1. I think it should be possible to appoint a team meeting at the start of your time at the club (or even at the start of each new season), where you can explain the type of football you want your team to play and that you demand your players to adapt to that style of play(if you want to have a dedicated kind of football like attacking, possession, counter, etc.). Practically this could mean things like: "I want to play counter-football with this team. I expect all you guys to develop your concentration and stamina, so that we can have success with this team." To clarify: I know you can train a player's stamina. But at this time, you can't influence a players willingness to develop his stamina. You can't try to inspire and convince him to develop the qualities you want from him. 2. I thinks it should be possible to appoint individual player meetings during the season in which you can compliment/warn a player because of his developement considering the playing style you are playing with your team. For example: "for the type of football we are playing, I really expect you to improve your First Touch. If you can't improve that than I don't see a place for you at this club under my leadership anymore and I will have to replace you." or, even with transfer-targets you have in mind: "I really want you in my team, but you have to be willing to improve your teamwork to fit our team." I think that both suggestions would really improve the way you can influence your squad, just like a real life manager can influence his squad. Some real life squads really develop under manager with a certain vision, but you just can't replicate those kind of stuff in Football Manager yet. The only thing you can do in Football manager is sell the players that don't fit your vision and replace them with new players who do fit your style. I think the existing squad players should be given the chance to adapt to a new manager and that goes not only through training, but also through motivation and explanation of a vision. I think you should be able to really bond or disagree with players to how the game of football needs to be played. Does a player disagree your vision? Fine, then find another club. Is he willing to commit? Great! He fits the team! (I'll quit writing now, hoping that I've made my suggestion clear)
  42. 2 points
    I actually think its quite good. I watch quite a wide angle view (Main stand I think) and see lots of little things that others perhaps gloss over. Yes there is still room for a little imagination, when a defender stands still its because he has either made a missed tackle and is recovering his balance or that he has been wrong footed etc. Yes there are still animations that can be added but given the complexity of FM I'm not sure you'll ever see the range of movements we see in a RL match. As for saying 3d is only there as an advertising tool is totally wrong, you are in the minority of users if you don't use it and thats been the case for a number of years.
  43. 2 points
    An amazing result and it was a really nervy end to the game with the penalties. We kept scoring in sudden death but Zilina just weren't missing so I thought we'd end up losing it at some point, the relief when they missed was unreal! I thought I'd look at the results to see who else went through and who we could get in the next round etc and spotted this... Talk about overshadow our achievement. The AI have gone and got Lincoln Red Imps of Gibraltar through to the 3rd Qualifying Round of a Champions League ffs I bet there's Gibraltar saves on here who haven't managed that in 20+ seasons of trying.
  44. 2 points
    So my thought process was: He's a good dribbler, which suits an IF/Winger role He's right footed so suits an IF on the left, or Winger on the right He doesn't have the outright pace to go past lots of players, but is mobile still which suits receiving the ball in tight areas PPM Cuts Inside from Both Flanks Fairly creative too
  45. 2 points
    "Don't touch my damn players"
  46. 2 points
    Well Denmark has won more Euro's than England so they obviously know better
  47. 2 points
    ....cuts to Soccer Saturday.... Merson: He's obviously a freaking striker, It doesn't matter if he starts a couple of yards deeper. Wayne Rooney done that back in the day.... Jeff: But Merse, Telleus has said he doesn't like striker systems, and sees him as a midfielder. It's innovative stuff! Merson: I don't care what he says! Where's he from anyway, Denmark or sommit, what do they bloody know about football?! Jeff: It's Sweden, act... Merson(interrupts): Bloody Sweden! Only only good player they ever 'ad was a striker!
  48. 2 points
    "Media/Players are Really Stupid" So...is this FM or real life? I see little difference.
  49. 2 points
    So, a good example of unsettling a player and hunting them down, Aymeric Laporte... I didn't think of it until now, but I should have tracked this in detail from the start. So, end of last season is when I declared him as top target, set my chief scout to watch him for three months, set myself to attend every upcoming Athletic and France(until I became their manager) game. Then asked a star player to have a word with the press. At this point, he was "not interested in transfer", at an orange level on scout reports. Half way through the window, by time I'd attended France's Euro campaign, had a second player have a word with the press, and put in a fairly meh bid, he had "some interest" but Athletic weren't budging on his 105m release. By August, he was "desperate to join", transfer listed by request. At 99m. So we kept working, scouting, buttering, etc. By deadline day, it was 86m, still too much. (As an aside, the more interested they get in joining, the lower their contract demands will be, at the start of this he was expecting 200-250k a week.) Window's closed, and scouting duty was finished, so, I just set up to attend every available Athletic game until January, re-set the chief scout on him, and continued asking players to talk to the press. The next real sign of progress was early October, as in January he'd have a 1.5 year contract left, continuing unhappiness, etc, his value was dropping, as was Athletic's resolve, and we saw a massive drop to 52m. Still too high, but much better. Now, on really long projects like this, you're eventually going to have to hedge your bets, as eventually he'll regain happiness, be removed from the transfer list, and you'll have to start negotiating with the club again, or at worst, they'll end up on a new deal. In this case, I was quite lucky, as a combination of age and contact, saw Athletic's demands drop at an alarming(for their fans) rate as their negotiating position weakened. By late November, it was time to strike, their asking price was matched with his value, well below what I was willing to pay, and I couldn't trust he'd stay unhappy much longer. 20 million, and 155kpw(30k less than his current Athletic contract!) is an absolute steal for him, considering how rich we are, and his quality. His age isn't a concern, as a CB can still be very effective when their pace goes, and in this case he's quick enough as it stands, combined with good Professionalism and decent Natural Fitness.
  50. 2 points
    I have won every single game with my Southampton team since I plugged it in vs. Man U. I dont know what it is up with this tactic, but for some reason the Manchester clubs dont want to face it Seriously, look at the stats against City. 2 shots in the whole game! And of course Aguero scored on one of them Notice the two victories against Liverpool and also the win against Arsenal away.
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