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  1. 22 points
    THE BOOK OF ROLES *UPDATED* When creating tactics we need to know how we are going to win games with the players at our disposal. Visualising how we score goals helps. Knowing which area of this pitch we can control with our players is vital. There are many ways to build a tactic, you can go ground up by analysing your team to find a tactical shape that suits them or you can impose your own tactical shape on them and slowly mould them into how you want to play. There is no right way, only your way. Ultimately football is just a battle on a pitch where sides try to win battles across the pitch. Weaker sides will try and win the battles in defence and try and launch quick counters. Sometimes they will try and force stronger sides on the backfoot and deny them a chance to play their game. Stronger sides could try and impose their will on a game and try and control the bigger areas of the pitch forcing weaker sides into an endless barrage of attacks. That’s the beauty of the game – there is no one tactical approach, and that’s the same with creating a tactical system. There are many ways to do it. There is one thing that stands true in any system. You need to find the right player to do the job you want. If you aim to play a defensive game then you need the right kind of players to do the job. With that in mind I will explain certain roles in the game to begin with so that I get the basics out of the way before constructing a tactic. A role can be played in different ways and it can work in combination with other instructions in the game to offer you choices. How these roles play on the pitch can affect your tactical shape, so its important to understand the basics first. Once you understand roles you will be able to make effective combinations with the players that you have. The Short and Sweet of Roles Goalkeepers Sweeper Keeper · Technically proficient, good first touch, dribbling and kicking are attributes needed apart from typical keeper attributes · Ideal for possession football and countering prevent short goalkeeper distribution and the high press. · Used well when we have players in close proximity to offer passing options. Eg. Ball Playing Defender, Deep Lying Playmaker · Might leave the box to launch attacks from deep · Real Life Example: Allisson, Liverpool · Works well in combination with a BPD, to counter the jigh press or prevent short goal keeper distribution. How a sweeper keeper and a ball playing defender can create passing combinations to beat a high press. They draw the team in before releasing the ball either to a playmaker or they can use the BPD to do a deep diagonal. Without these roles the Sweeper Keeper could try and pass the ball to the nearest fullback. Goalkeeper · Orthodox keeper, doesn’t need to have good first touch · Can still play the ball on the ground with the “Play out of Defence” team instruction · Stays in the penalty area, rarely ventures out of the box · Real Life Example: Kaspar Schmiechel, Leicester (Before Brendan Rodgers as manager) Central Defender: · Generic defenders who are a good option for any side · Will play the ball out of defence or in the air. · Team instructions and mentality can influence their play, sometimes they will play the ball long when there are no adequate passing options. · Movement – Does not leave the defensive line Ball Playing Defender · Technically proficient player, good first touch, dribbling, passing, vision and technical defender attributes · Can launch deep diagonal attacks from the back if there are good options in front. Eg an Inside Forward on attack duty playing against the high press, with space to attack. · Risky role if used with players who have poor first touch, composure and dribbling · When paired with a sweeper keeper they can counter a high press or prevent short GK distribution · Can be used very effectively in a 5 man or a 4 man defensive line. · Movement – Dynamic role that can leave the defensive line to initiate attacks or break lines (eg, Move from defensive line to midfield) · Real life example: Virgil Van Dyke (Liverpool), Matthis De Light (Ajax) Libero · Creative central defender, passing, decisions, vision, and dribbling are recommended attributes to have in addition to central defender attributes · Technically proficient player · Can push out of his defensive line when he brings the ball out of defence · To bring the best out of him, it’s best not to have playmakers ahead of him · A good role for playmakers who need to be retrained as they get older as long as the defenders around them are fast. No Nonsense Central Defender · Ideal role for players who are not great with passing, first touch or dribbling · A role that plays direct balls into space or towards a player · Ideal role for sides that want to play defensive football where clearing the ball is the first priority · Can be used by any team as an option for a deep strike when they are playing with attacking duties in the final third No Nonsense Fullback · Does not overlap · Simple fullback role whose priority is to guard the flanks · His starting positioning is usually too deep to offer support to attacking players in central positions because he holds position · His job is to help the team recycle possession so he will not be expected to cross often. · He may clear the ball when he has no good options to pass to Fullback · Versatile with plenty of options offered by duties, including automatic duty, which makes this a very customisable role that can be abused. · If a team is on attacking mentality and you use a FB on auto he will follow the team mentality and you can instruct him to do things that may not be available to other duties. It’s a duty I avoid. · On defend duties he holds his position and crosses from deep · On support duties, decisions and his individual mentality will influence his play. He will choose when to do cross, play the through ball. His job is to support the midfield and attacks. · On attack duties, the fullback will cross more often and look for chances to move higher up the pitch. · A fullback on support can be positioned higher to support midfield with the overlap/underlap shout. This will place them close to midfield, but can run the risk of putting the team in danger if the side is not good at circulating the ball. · A fullback can be influenced to pass inside more by using the “Sit Narrow” instruction. This will move them narrower during buildup play. This can be useful for sides that have issues with keeping the ball when they are building play from the back. In this image you can see how the fullbacks position themselves. When playing on support or defend they will not commit to attacking transitions early, instead they will wait till your side exerts control over the opposition area. Here the FB(D) on the left flank is helping the team circulate possession, he will have plenty of passing options. The FB(D) may not overlap but if you have the right distribution of roles in midfield you can use them to control midfield creating space for him to be an unmarked cross deliverer from deep. Never look down on a FB(D). These are some of the movement patterns we can expect from duties and from certain player instructions like “Sit Narrow” and “Overlap/Underlap” Wingback · More aggressive than the fullback · Good role for sides opting to play an aggressive possession game in midfield and the opponent’s third · A wingback on defend duty will help the side keep possession of the ball, help the ball move the ball through the midfield transition phase but will prioritise returning back to a defensive position when needed · Wingbacks on Defend duty are positioned higher up the pitch than a fullback on support In attacking transitions they will get themselves higher up the pitch Here is a wingback on defend duty supporting the attack, if the side loses the ball he needs to track back quickly. His priority is to cover the threat that is on the flank. Wingbacks on defend do not cross from the byeline, they will hold position and cross from deep Inverted Wingback - A cross between a defensive midfelder and a fullback - Positions himself in the defensive midfield tier when the team has the ball and they are moving from defence to midfield - On defend duty he will hold position, unless you have the overlap instruction, which could influence him to down the flanks if you are in control of the opposition third - On support/attack duty he can end up attacking the box centrally. In some cases he may move further than a central midfielder on support. This role requires specific requirements to work, failing which they default to playing as wingbacks - If used with two defensive midfielders, the role defaults to playing like a wingback because the defensive midfield strata is already occupied - If only one defensive midfielder is used but he is not centrally placed the IWB closest to the DM will default to playing as a wingback - If there are no wingers/wide midfielders playing in the AML/AMR/MR/MR slot, then the IWB defaults to playing as a wingback - These are done by design by SI. - Real Life Example: Phillip Lahm, (Bayern under Pep Guardiola) Here we are playing with two IWB, behind two wingers, note how the IWB’s are positioned slightly ahead of the DM. These IWB’s have been given the overlap instruction. We are in control of the opposition space, and the IWB goes forward to overlap and receive the pass out wide IWB’s can also break through lines quickly, here our IWB has dribbled all the way from his starting position, out to the right flank, even before the other IWB has got into position. He holds the ball long enough for the rest of the team to catch up, plays the ball to the central midfielder The central midfielder moves wide to play the ball out back to the IWB as he comes in free to cross the ball. This IWB was played on support, with the overlap instruction to create this style of play. However this kind of dynamic attack also has its risks. His driving runs can sometimes leave your flanks exposed. To use this role effectively you will need a technically capable player who can do the task without losing the ball. He will also need to have good acceleration, stamina and work rate. When used with high defensive lines, choosing the wrong player for this role can be catastrophic. Complete Wingback Along with the IWB this is the other wingback role that has roam from position making their play-style unpredictable CWB can cut inside or go wide Suited for players with good technical, mental and physical attributes. Since they roam they need to have good decisions to make the right call whether to go wide or narrow. They start from wider positions and will dribble more. Defensive Midfielders Before looking at their roles it’s worth noting that one can play with up to 3 defensive midfielders in that strata but whether it’s a good idea or not I leave it to your imagination. Anchoring Defences Anchor Man - The most disciplined defensive midfielder - Positions himself in front of the two central defenders and does not venture too far from them. - Plays simple passes and does not do anything extraordinary - Is a great choice when you want to move the ball safely to playmakers positioned in central midfield - One of the best roles in the game for disciplined defences - Effective against lone man striker formations in isolating them as passing options An anchorman’s position in front of the central defenders and in the opponent’s third when you have possession Forming a tight partnership with the central defenders, not expected to close down players on the flank An anchorman will not venture too far away from his defenders Defensive Midfielder - Another excellent role for protecting your defences - A bit more creative than the Anchorman and might try longer passes and risky passes - He may close down further away than an anchorman. - If there are other players closing down in midfield then this could lead to complications as the DM may also enter the mix leaving you vulnerable. - Ideally you want someone with good positioning, concentration and decisions to play this role, because they can sometimes commit to actions that reflect poor decisions. - This may be a generic role but it is also a simpler role without being locked into player instructions and can be a good option for more creative players, as they wouldn’t be shoe-horned into a particular playstyle - Real life example: Javi Martinez A defensive midfielder generally occupies the same area as an anchorman Here the DM has joined other roles in midfield to close down a player even though the team is playing on balanced and he is on defend duty. This leaves the defence vulnerable. With a good defensive line and the right players this may not be an issue, but it’s worth paying attention to. Ball Winning Midfielder - A very interesting role, this player is a disruptor - He breaks down play, has a big area of influence and needs to be used with care. - If used in the defensive midfield tier, he can leave the central defenders to close down the flanks. - If used in midfield as a support duty he can close down further up the pitch. A good position to use him is in central midfield on support where he can disrupt sides and make it hard for them to build up play in midfield Here we have a BWM who has left the area in front of the central defenders unprotected as he goes to close down the opposition in their half. In your own half he could leave one of the central defenders unprotected as he goes to help out the flanks. Note his positioning and compare that to the anchorman and defensive midfielder. While he can be a very good player at winning the ball, you will still need good players with good positioning and concentration around him. The combination of these roles and the use of FB(S) and FB(D) allow us to build play out of the back. When we get to the final third our trio of midfielders do a fairly good job of controlling the centre while we are safe down the flanks. This gives us a chance to deliver crosses from deep . Segundo Volante – Roaming Playmaker – Regista All three roles are variants of playmakers. All three can be played from the defensive midfield position, but only the Regista and Playmaker can be played from central defensive midfield positions. Careful thought needs to made about roles and duties around the Segundo Volante and the Regista to get the best out of them. Otherwise they will get bypassed as passing options Segundo Volante - Cross between the DLP/BBM/DM - Demanding role – covers, defends, creates and can arrive late to score - Played in the DM tier, either alone and offset from the middle or part of a pair of DMs - Requires work rate, decisions, first touch, dribbling, vision, off the ball and stamina as main attributes. Other attributes enhance the role – Positioning, Tackling and Marking will strengthen his defensive contribution and Flair will enhance his attacking style. - Very good option for any kind of side that wants to play possession football with a defensive tactical shape - His driving runs can be hard to handle for opposition side - When paired with a W(S) down a flank they make an extremely strong flank attacking pair - Can operate in the half-spaces to draw players to him Here I am using the Segundo Volante as a pair with one on support and another on attack. They are supported by a BWM(D) playing ahead of them. Note the movement of the SV(A) as he arrives late in the box. In the next image I have paired my SV(A)/SV(S) with an F9 in attack. In an attacking transition I can expect my F9 to drop deep vacate the space for the SV(A) to attack. You can expect the SV(A) to go quite high up the pitch to support attacks. Here is almost on par with the W(S) who has the ball. He starts out in this position when we have the ball in midfield And follows the W(S) to lend support as he moves higher up the pitch And then finally arrives late in the box to be a goal scoring threat Regista - Less aggressive than an SV(A), More aggressive then a DLP. - Ideally used with systems that play higher up the pitch and can dominate possession - Creative player that does not run with the ball as much as an SV but makes himself available - Ideally suited for lower tempo systems, on higher tempo settings he could be bypassed and will likely be used only if your side can camp in the opponents half. - Mainly acts like a link player for defense and attack with the ability to play the creative pass, not dissimilar to the roaming playmaker - Real life example : Andrea Pirlo Our regsta dropping deep to make himself available for the pass from the keeper. He is a more aggressive creative player than a playmaker and will position himself fairly high in the attacking transition. His behaviour is not to different from a Roaming Playmaker who can also position himself fairly high in the attacking transition Roaming Playmaker I grouped SV, RPM and Regista in one group because they have slight variations from each other. People normally assess the effectiveness of these players in a wrong way, by looking at their assists numbers. The best way of seeing their effectiveness is to assess their passing completion percentages and whether they are the source of key passes that lead to assists. He is also a link player that helps build transitions, this is why his passing completion numbers need to be good. You do not want any playmaker or quasi playmaker role to be losing possession or making bad passes. In other words, did he play a key pass to a player who generated an assist. You can either drill to statistics or pay attention to games. - Needs good decisions, passing, vision, off the ball, first touch - Roams a lot so he needs good work rate, stamina and natural fitness - Can be played under any tempo settings - Positoning and behaviour is similar to the Reg - Shares smiliar weakness to the SV and the Regista, the roaming can place his side under pressure - His roaming is also a strength for sides that are good at keeping the ball - When using any roaming role in the centre of the pitch in the defensive midfield area, you need to think of how the roles and duties around it will defend the space once the player is not there to defend it. - The RPM will move all over the pitch to support play and does not make an ideal defensive player. - May leave central defensive midfield are unprotected when you are in possession and are building play up in midfield In this image the RPM is not in a good position when his side’s attack breaks down. The opposition have played a clearance in the direction of a player who is free. As the attack builds up you can clearly see the problem as the opposition player has the option to free a player to attack space or drive the ball himself down the left The RPM will move all over the pitch to support play in this image he moves to the left where he is needed
  2. 22 points
    Why have I decided to start this thread in the first place? Simply because I've noticed too many people tend to make "defensive overkills" in their tactics (along with those who make attacking/in-possession ones, or both). When I say a "defensive overkill", I mean needlessly aggressive - and consequently risky - way of defending. Though it sometimes may also pertain to an extremely passive manner of defending. For example, when you see a tactic with the following instructions - (much) higher DL, (much) higher LOE, extremely urgent pressing, prevent short GKD + counter-press - and all these while playing on a high-risk mentality (positive or attacking, let alone very attacking), it's a clear example of defensive overkill. Add the "Get stuck in" and/or "Use tighter marking" to the aforementioned instructions - and you have a "recipe for disaster". Why? Because good defending and (too) aggressive defending are not the same thing by any means. It seems to me that people who use these extremely aggressive defensive instructions disregard the fact that your players may not (always) be capable of executing everything you tell them to. In other words - what you want from your players is one thing, but what they are actually able to fulfill is quite another. There probably are exceptions - such as world-class teams - that might be able to successfully implement even the most aggressive styles of defending, but I fear they are few and far between. Before I itemize what IMO people need to be aware of when it comes to defending, I also want to emphasize two universal principles of the tactics creation process: 1. Mentality affects all other settings, both attacking (in possession) and defensive (out of possession). When you change the (team) mentality, you automatically change not only individual players' mentalities, but also: tempo, passing style, (attacking) width, time wasting frequency, defensive line (DL), line of engagement (LOE) and pressing intensity. Arguably, even tackling might become more aggressive when you up the mentality (and vice versa), or at least I gained such an impression (though I cannot be sure about that without a confirmation from SI). 2. The way you defend affects the way you attack, and vice versa! Now, let's explain what defensive tactical instructions actually mean and do, one by one: - Defensive line and LOE work in conjunction in the sense that they together define how vertically compact your team is. Logically - the smaller the distance between DL and LOE, the more vertical compactness; the greater it is, the less compact your team is when defending. Does this mean that you should play with maximum DL (much higher) and minimal LOE (much lower)? Absolutely not! While that would make your team extremely compact, it also creates plenty of space both behind your defense for the opposition to potentially exploit and on their territory to build the play up almost unobstructed (unless you apply more aggressive pressing and tackling, but that makes you even more vulnerable to balls over the top). My general advice would be - look to avoid any kind of extremes when creating a tactic, both in defense and attack. - Pressing urgency defines how early and aggressively your players will move (out of position) to press the opposition player on the ball when he enters their zone of (defensive) responsibility. As a team instruction - it applies to all players! Therefore - the more urgently you press, the more disrupted your defensive shape will be; and vice versa - the less urgent pressing is, the more stable the defensive shape is. Does it mean that you should never use more aggressive pressing styles? Absolutely not! Here you need to recall the aforementioned fact that mentality affects everything. So - generally speaking - the higher the mentality, the less need for high pressing intensity (urgency). On the other hand, higher pressing urgency makes (relatively) more sense when you play a more cautious style of football that involves greater vertical compactness (view the part on DL and LOE) and a sort of low defensive block (e.g. standard DL/lower LOE or lower DL/much lower LOE combos). Because in this kind of situations, your players are closer to each other when defending, so if one of them gets drawn out of position, others can come quickly to help him out. - Unlike pressing and tackling, marking applies to an opposition player when he is not in the possession of the ball. So marking is considered successful when you prevent the player you are told to mark from receiving the ball/being available for a pass from his teammate who has the ball - not when you take the ball away from him (that's tackling). Now, in modern football it's highly uncommon to instruct a player to specifically mark a particular opposition player, let alone to ask more players to do that (there are occasional exceptions of course, such as asking your AMC to mark the opposition DMC if he is their key player/playmaker). Therefore, the "Use tighter marking" team instruction actually means telling your players to try and act like a shadow to the opposition player that is closest to them at any given moment in order to put as much pressure on him/them as possible and thus (hopefully) thwart their attacking build-up play. But given that not all players are equally good at marking, you cannot expect that your team will always win the ball back immediately. When tight marking makes (more) sense as a team instruction? Like higher pressing intensity - when your team plays with a rather low defensive block and maintains a relatively high level of vertical compactness. When, on the other hand, tight marking may be risky? When you play with a higher DL (especially if opposition forwards are likely to outpace your defenders) and/or when your vertical compactness is rather small (meaning a greater distance between DL and LOE). - Tackling simply means the intensity and level of aggression your players are told to put on the opposition player who is in possession at the moment in an attempt to rob him of the ball. Get stuck in - more aggressive tackling. Stay on feet - more measured and cautious, meaning your players will wait a bit longer before trying to make a tackle, lest it be mistimed. Like both marking and pressing, more aggressive tackling is less risky (makes more sense) when coupled with a lower defensive block and greater vertical compactness (and vice versa). And for precisely the same reason. - Prevent short GK distribution means asking your forwards (or more advanced players in general) to get closer to opposition defenders, in order to make it risky for their goal-keeper to distribute the ball to them. The aim is obvious - try and prevent the opposition from building from the back. Here you need to consider your formation in the first place. If you use a more top-heavy system (e.g. 4231 or 424), the instruction makes more sense (and is less risky) because you have a solid numbers of players up front who can press the opposition back-line without getting (too) far away from their (defensive) positions. Of course, if you want to play a counter-attacking style of football that looks to "lure" the opposition into your territory before winning the ball and launching a swift counter, then the Prevent GKD instruction can be counter-productive (the reason is logical). - The choice of Defensive width should depend on basic strengths and weaknesses of your defense, and not necessarily just nominal defenders but also (more defensive) midfielders. This is (admittedly) one of the trickiest instructions in FM. Basically, if you believe (feel?) that your defense can more successfully deal with crosses (jumping, positioning, marking, heading) than low passes through the middle for (fast) opposition forwards - play with narrow defensive width. In the opposite case - set it to wider (anticipation, acceleration, concentration, positioning, marking, tackling, decisions, composure). If you aren't sure what to do - or ideally, your defense is equally good in dealing both with crosses and passes through the middle - just leave it to standard. And take into account not only your defenders' abilities, but also those of opposition players. For example, your defense may be very good in the air, but what if an opposition striker is even better - and perhaps also faster at that? Plus - speaking of narrow defensive width - bear in mind that crosses can be low (or whipped), not just floated. Defensive player instructions will be dealt with in the following post.
  3. 15 points
    If you say so. Why not go and create your own thread then? Show us all the complex ideas and condense it a few short sentences that show/explain how the work. Can’t wait to see your stuff.
  4. 14 points
    I pretty much gave up on the game some months ago. Felt like playing last week and got my motivation to play again. Amazing manager game. Terrible coach game. The actual games are just unwatchable for me. 80% of the goals are exactly the same crap. I've played with teams that should dominate the league, with relegation battle teams and everything in between. And I've watched AI games just to confirm this. Basically, a fullback to opposite winger deep cross is more dangerous than a 1on1 situation. Lower league and top class players react the same. They just bottle like 80% of clear cut chances they have. And I just can't watch that anymore. High defensive line, offside trap? Here comes a deep cross to the other side of the box and a 15m volley. Deep defensive line, tall fullbacks? Here comes a deep cross to the other side of the box that falls just outside your 5m box. And of course, set-pieces. Hoofing it into the box from 40m set-piece is a legit tactic. And I don't really believe in those theories, but it's just ridiculous how your conversion rate drops as soon as you dominate games and have like 20+ shots. It's like the game compensates for bad defensive mechanisms by reducing the conversion rate. Outside of ME the game is perfect except for some minor issues and I'd have no problems paying for FM20 that would be exactly the same game, but with proper ME. Even one from older games.
  5. 13 points
    Pressure building. May 2055. 2 games left. This is it. If we beat PSG we are Ligue 1 champions for the 1st time in our history. Even having a player sent off after 12 mins couldn't stop of from winning. Lyon lost 1-0 away to Nice and we are Ligue 1 Champions, (with a game in hand). Not just that, but of course because we won the Ligue Cup we have actually done a double. I'm not sure if they didn't give us the trophy after the PSG game or we just lost it during the celebrations, but either way, it's not in the trophy cabinet. Maybe we get it after the last game of the season.
  6. 12 points
    “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” Sun Tzu I have recently been reading “The Art of War” since it is something I see quoted in various guises all the time. While I was reading it, some quotes really caught my attention in relation to football, and how I approach Football Manager. I realised that I had been, subconsciously for the most part, been following some of these rules. The quote above I think is spectacularly revealing in terms of how to approach the game in a successful manner. It boils down to two things; know yourself, and know your opposition. It sounds so simple. Two things to do to be successful (on average) at the game. Ultimately, this has inspired me to finally write up my approach to the game. I have been doing this in bits and pieces around the forum recently anyway. It is nice to get things in one place. I will try to frame this as a pretty basic approach to the game. How I have ideas, and how I try to get these ideas into the game. I am by no means an expert in football tactics, nor really at the game. I have played the same way for years now. The examples I will be drawing from are all from my main save. So everything I will show you is how I play the game myself, not preparing something specifically for this thread. I hope that this will therefore prove useful for people who are looking at how to play the game, or to develop their own way to play. I will discuss not only the tactical side of things, but how I recruit players and manage my squad, manage the squad happiness, and probably other things. With that relatively long preamble behind us (well done if you read all that), lets get started with the first thing you must do. Know yourself. Knowing yourself. How do I want to play? The first aspect of knowing yourself is to know how you want to play the game. That is not just tactical, but as a general philosophy of running a club. Cleon has discussed these ideas previously (and on his blog), as has Rashidi. So note the things I write here are almost never exclusively my own ideas. I have drawn from these forums, other blogs, youtube, etc. quite extensively. So, how do I want to play. What are the key aspects of my football philosophy? Let’s break them down point by point. 1. I want to play attractive positive football, whenever possible. I want to enjoy watching my team play, not just win matches. 2. I want to make sure every single player who plays for me leaves better than when they arrived. Be that youth players who will never play for me, or first team players who go on to bigger clubs. Player development matters. 3. I want my players to be determined and hard working. They must give everything for the club. 4. I want to try to favour youth, and try to avoid spending stupidly high wages on players. These things give me a few rules by which I can play (more like guidelines, a la the pirate code). I do not have to stick to them religiously. I may sign an older player if he will really make my side better, for instance. This serves as a decent starting point, though, for the following discussion. We can break these philosophies down into 3 groups, essentially. The first is tactical. I have decided how I want to play, broadly. I have to work out how I want to implement that. We will spend a lot of time discussing that. The second is training. I want to make my players better, so I must train them to as close to their potential as I can. We will spend less time talking about this, since it is a personal thing that perhaps others are uninterested in. The third is squad management; keeping players happy, having players on the correct contracts, and recruitment. I will spend a good deal of time talking about this because it is something that is vital to my long term successes. I will bring the first post to a close here. I think it is vital to have a good idea what you want to achieve in the game. Especially for tactical style and for recruitment. This can be whatever you want, there is no right or wrong. You could easily just decide to sign mercenary players and have a high turnover of players over time. There is not really a right or wrong way to aim for (there are right and wrong ways to implement ideas). My conclusion for this first post is to understand what manager you will be, and you will find decision making later on becomes much clearer.
  7. 12 points
    This game, Football Manager 2019, has broken me. Has beaten me, kicked me while I was on the ground, and mocked me. Let me vent my frustration. I’ve been playing CM/FM for over the last 20 years. As it got more and more complex, I’ve been dedicating it more and more time. I never reload, I try to do a clean save. I don’t research for wonder kids or winning tactics. Over the past year, I’ve been watching Busthenet videos. Over the last 6/7 years, I’ve been reading guides on a semi-regular basis. But I get on the game, I don’t win trophies. I try to manage the team I support (Boavista FC), and every year, I can barely past the first season on multiple save attempts (usually sacked my jan/feb). So I got to decent saves on the past few years with Milan & Valencia (FM18 2 saves of 4 seasons), West Ham (FM17 6 seasons, finished 2nd on my last season), Everton (FM16). Not a single trophy. I thin my last trophy was the Ligue 1 with OL on FM14. As the get gets more complex, I’ve been struggling and struggling... This year, I started with Valencia. Created a manager without international caps (it kinda breaks my imersion to see nations caps and goals in my profile page). The results: 4th, 4th, 4th, 3rd (and CL semifinal), 5th. On that last season, the board wasn’t happy that I failed a CL spot. They gave me an ultimatum. 10 points in 5 games. Stupid me, didn’t bargained. Invested as I’ve never invested before on that pre-season. Start the season, 2 wins. Go to Athletic, and lose (they were the ones who finished 4th the previous seasons). So now, I need 4 points from 2 matches. Hosted Real Madrid. And so it goes. 1-0. 1-1. 1-2... 2-2 on the 89th minute. That was close... 5th game. Host Malaga. 31 shots (12 on target) by my team. 1 goal. 3 Malaga shots (1 on target). The result? You guessed it. 1-1. 8 points. I was sacked. Kept going with the save. By December that year, I was hired by Bayer Leverkusen. They were having a bad season (14th), and I raised the goal of mi table to upper mid-table. Finished 9th. I thought the board would want Europa League football next season, but no... they want a CL spot. So, the season starts. By around 1/4th of the season I’m going great. 1st place, good football, plenty of goals. But then... the goals stopped. And so we dropped. Was 9th by the winter break. But we got ourselves up after beating Bayern 4-1. Rose to 4th. Tight table. 2 match days to finish, were 1 point away from 3rd place. From 3rd to 9th, the difference is just 6 points. We go to Munich... and lost 3-1. And end the season with a home defeat against Eintracht Frankfurt. We finish... 9th place. 2 points shy of EL football. Board meeting. I don’t get the sack. Yet. But I have to get 12 points out of 5 games. No bargain allowed. The pre season? Awful transfer market, and I lost my top striker who had a release clause, and my main targets didn’t want to come, as I had no European football. So, I have to win 4/5 on the start of the season. So I go. WDWL. I’m out... Getting demotivated by now. But wait! I get to manage Brasil national team! And I start by beating Argentina easily. On the road to the WC, I lose just one game (at home to Argentina), draw a friendly with Spain, and win every other game. With a national team based on regens, and a 33 y/o Neymar. I got to the 1/4 finals beating Italy on the way. But then I face Germany... and lose 2-0. Sacked. Fair enough. Got hired by Atalanta, looking to get into Europa League. But by now, the game is full of regens and I hardly know the teams. I think I don’t have the will to carry on with this save. So yesterday, I decided I should start with my Boavista, again. Decent pre-season. Tried to create a defensive, counter-attack team. First official match, League Cup: 0-0 against Moreirense, lost on penalties. Start the season against FC Porto and Sporting Lisbon. Lost 4-0 and 3-1. Next, I host Vitoria Setúbal. Was playing nicely and creating chances. They go down to 10 men by the 60th minute. And I... can’t... score... 0-0. Stating to get on my nerves. Next match, away at Nacional. By the 17th minute I’m losing 2-0. By the 25th minute, my captain does a ugly tackle, is show the red card. Rage quit. I don’t know what to do... I enjoy playing this game so much, but it keeps giving me bad experiences this year. And I think, THINK that i know most of the tactical theory, but I can’t seem to understand how can I get so overrun on some games. I do change and tinker tactics a lot. Maybe that’s wrong? Maybe I should stick with a vision and “force” the players into it? I want a new save, but don’t really know what. Does having international caps on the manager experience easies the game? I’m thinking about managing Everton, West Ham or Newcastle. Or maybe role play that I’m a former star (like Figo or Robert Pires) and manage a team like Arsenal. Or should I go back and continue with my original save with Atalanta? Have you ever felt like this, broken by the game? Do you have a save suggestion for me? If you’ve read my rant so far, thank you. I just feel so overwhelmed that I need to vent it out.
  8. 12 points
    In the opening post, I inadvertently omitted two defensive transitional instructions - Counter-press and Regroup. So before I deal with defensive player instructions, I'll touch upon these. Couter-press tells your players - except for defenders - to start pressing the opposition and try to win the ball back immediately as it's been lost. It can be risky because more players will simultaneously run at the opposition player on the ball to press him, so they may leave space behind them that can be exploited due to disruption of your defensive shape. Therefore, you need to be careful when using counter-press, especially when you play against good sides that are able to take advantage of the extra space you have left between and/or behind your lines. Advice: Do not use counter-press together with more (let alone extremely) urgent pressing, and vice versa. Or if you do - be prepared for potential troubles. Regroup does the exact opposite of counter-press - it tells your players to get back into their defensive positions and defend from there according to regular out-of-possession instructions and their individual player instructions. It's logically (much) safer than counter-press and is generally recommendable when playing against better sides. Now - on defensive player instructions. There are three, and they do the same as their team equivalents, only on an individual (player) level. Accordingly: - Mark tighter PI is the equivalent of the Use tighter marking TI - Tackle harder is the equivalent of Get stuck in - and the meaning of Pressing intensity is obvous, I think Given that - in the opening post - I explained what each of these instructions does, I assume there is no need to repeat all that in this post. Instead, I'll try to offer just a couple of hopefully constructive suggestions. First on pressing. If you want to put a lot of pressure on the opposition in order to prevent them from building from the back (or at least make it as difficult as possible), you don't need to use more or extremely urgent team pressing. A lot safer way to do that is to maximize individual pressing intensity for your 3-5 most advanced players in their PIs. In that case though, the Prevent short GK distribution TI may be a bit of an overkill. When it comes specifically to pressing, you need to know that individual player pressing intensity is interrelated with team pressing intensity, while both are affected by your team mentality. In other words, whatever pressing intensity you set for an individual player, the actual intensity of his pressing will automatically change when you change the team pressing intensity and/or mentality. Similarly, you don't necessarily have to use hard tackling - aka Get stuck in - and/or tighter marking as a team instruction. Instead, you can tell certain players to tackle harder and/or mark tighter in their player instructions. Opposition instructions - both positional and player-related - can also be a useful defensive tool. However, I am not going to deal with them here, simply because most people seem reluctant to use them. Another reason is that they can be used in a number of different ways, both successfully and in a wrong way. The next post will be the final one, in which I'll provide a couple of examples of both a defensive overkill and a well-balanced defensive setup.
  9. 12 points
    So we can finally start to talk about team, player and opposition instructions. They are important to my tactical setup, but when designing a play style I typically add them afterwards to generate the football I want. There will be situations where you will know some instructions you want in advanced based on your own ideas of how you want to play, so do not take these posts as the only way to do thing. They are just the way I like to think about problems. Also please note these are “default” settings that I will use when I think I can enforce my own style. I do make changes for specific matches, and I will detail some of that later. Team instructions So, how am I going to decide what team instructions I want to use? I can go back the first post, and think about what I want to do. My goal is to play attractive football. This is pretty airy and for good reason. I have not yet defined what I think of as attractive football. In the previous post I did mention that I want to create many different types of chances to be as attractive as possible. Let’s dig deeper into what I like. Which teams do I enjoy watching play currently? As much as it pains me to say as a Mancunian (albeit a Huddersfield fan, please pour pity on me for this season), I really enjoy watching Liverpool play. Klopp in general. High intensity, relatively direct. I also love watching slick counter attacking goals. None of this tiki taka nonsense for me, give me a move with 4 incisive passes over one with 40. How does this translate into FM? I can think of 3 things I will select immediately based on what I said: higher tempo and counter-press (elements of Klopp’s style that I like), and counter (I like counter attacks). There will be some supplementary things to add on here. If I want to play a pressing game, I will set my line of engagement to higher, to put pressure on teams in their own half. I will also use a higher defensive line, to put more players into a position to press more players without getting too far out of position. Now, I realise this is going to leave me open to balls over the top, and counter attacking. This is a risk I take willingly. I want to play attacking positive football. Sometimes it is going to go wrong, and we may concede. As long as this is not happening all the time, the risk is acceptable. You will also note that I want to use players close to the area to play the ball to players running past them into the box. For this reason, I select “work ball into box”. I really do not want my striker getting the ball in space, turning and shooting. Ditto any other player. I want to probe, and I want to give chance for all the things I described previously to happen. Finally, I typically do not play with strong aerial threats up front. So I am against lobbing the ball high from my ‘keeper. Better to try to build from the back. As such, I will use “play out of defence”, and tell the ‘keeper to distribute to the CBs or FBs. To summarize the entire second and third post thus far. See how simple that feels? I have selected only things I know that I want. I have tried to avoid making this complicated, and I know exactly why every instruction is there. Player instructions. Player instructions are very simple in my case. I rarely use them. I will tell my front 3 to close down more, as well as the CM(A). The latter because he will often find himself high up the pitch when we lose the ball, so he may as well help try to force a long pass. Why do I not have more? Well, simply because I do not have a reason to select any more. If I add more, it will be situational because I spotted something during a match. Opposition instructions. Finally, a word about opposition instructions. I get the feeling these are not very popular here. Indeed, I remember reading one of the people here (I forget who) saying that OIs are for people who do not know what their tactic is doing. I am going to make a counter argument for this, based on creating pressing zones. Currently, in the game, you cannot create zones of the pitch where you press, and others where you do not. I try to mimic this with opposition instructions, targeting specific positions. This means that my team will close down players in specific areas of the field. Which is quite nice. I do this by selection higher pressing intensity on any player playing in the DMC strata or DC strata (and the ‘keeper). I also instruct my team to tackle these players harder. This is to really put pressure on those players. Press them hard, get a foot in, make a tackle. Instead of the unfocused pressing you get from TIs, I have created something that should only happen in specific areas. I will also close down wingers, who I really do not want to give the time to cross if I can avoid it. In addition, I show on to their weaker foot. Those players I do not close down, I set to be tightly marked. Why? The players who are being pressed are going to want to get the ball away quickly. They will try to make the ball go forward. If I take away as many of those passes forward away as possible, we increase the chances of winning the ball back. That is the point of pressing. Either win the ball back with a tackle, or force the other side to give you the ball back with a bad pass or just aimless clearance to relieve the pressure. I hope I you can see why using OIs can also achieve this, and here are the settings pictorially, to make it clearer. That deals with the basics of my tactical setup. It took 3 posts, which makes it seem a lot more difficult that it is. When you think about what I have actually done, though, it is quite simple. I have just written a lot of words to explain things in a much detail as I can. I do make tactical changes during matches quite often, and I will deal with this in a future post. Next, however, I am going to talk to you about the players. What players do I want, how do I pick them, etc. This is something just as important as making a tactic.
  10. 11 points
    Quick update - you join me at the mid-point of the 2023/24 season, having just retained the World Club Championship and preparing for a second-half of the season competing for a hat-trick of Champions Leagues, and the Euro 2024 with Portugal. The 4-2-3-1 Those of you following my tactical threads over the years will probably have noticed the influence of the Dutch/Ajax model and then the Barcelona model in my tactical preferences, particularly in the use of 4-3-3 with a 1-2 midfield set up based largely on the logic explained here. For the past couple of seasons, we've enjoyed great success using an Iniesta-Xavi-Busquets inspired 2-1 setup. This facilitates very effective buildup play and allows wingbacks to bomb forward, but I've always felt Florentino Luis could play a more advanced role. Searching for a solution, we've experimented with Dantas in a 6 role with João Felix and Florentino Luis pushing ahead, As yet, the system has never quite clicked. It's always resulted in excessive attacking responsibility on Florentino Luis or under-utilising João Felix as a box-to-box midfielder. The 4-2-3-1 gives a number of benefits: Florentino Luis moves into midfield, in a role which suits him. João Felix oscillates between midfield and attack, giving us an extra man in the attacking line. The Dantas - Luis double pivot controls the midfield, recycles possession and frees our wingbacks to move forward. In many systems, Deeplying Playmaker (Defend) would be a somewhat negative choice of playmaker. However, in the context of an Overload system, Fluid shape, passing Through the Middle and the absence of any individuals on Attack duty, it becomes quite aggressive. He's going to sit, holding midfield and orchestrating attacking play, with lots of passing options ahead of him. My personal preference is to play with - at most - one playmaker. This comes from experimenting with the Pep's Barcelona tactic and observing - purely a subjective personal opinion - the team prioritising the more attacking playmaker, altering the way I wanted to play. This means that my Number 10 role is simply Attacking Midfield (Support). The objective is for the Number 10 to act as an all-round attacker, described in this article about the Brazilian 'Ponta de Lança' rather than a specialist playmaker, creating a 4-2-4 shape. This system again utilises some of the more intricate mentality mechanisms, we have discussed earlier in the thread. Overload mentality & Fluid shape means the team aggressively attacks and defends as a unit. The absence of an individual with Attack duty slightly increases the mentality across the team. Exploit the Middle increases the mentality of Central Defenders and Midfielders on Defend duty. Overlapping Wingbacks increases the mentality of Wingbacks and reduces the mentality of the Inside Forwards. This results in a few characteristics. The team aren't quite all equal, but they're very close. For those still thinking in 'notches' everyone's within 2 notches of each other. The entire team attacks and defends together and is aggressive and expansive in both The Wingbacks and Attacking Midfielder (Support) have the highest mentalities in the team. The Inside forwards are a 'notch' lower. The goalkeeper, central defenders, midfielders and striker are a 'notch' lower again, as the core of the team. Shame there's not an easier way to show this within the interface. This creates the 4-2-4 shape in attack, but more of a 4-5-1 in defence. So far, we're flying. ..including a few absolute demolition jobs. The first team squad all seem to be right at their peak now. ..and we rotate into a 4-3-3 regularly, particularly in the league and domestic cup games. With some real depth in the squad throughout. B Team look OK, a couple of regens starting to look like they might challenge to break into the squad. After the youth intake drought, my U19s have all been brought in from elsewhere. All in all, we're gearing up nicely for the later stages of the Champions League and Euro 2024. Depending on how this goes down, it could be the natural end of this save or perhaps a new direction. Will see. Although, I'd certainly like to do a few more game analysis before finishing up, time permitting.
  11. 11 points
    This is just plain silly. Folk can do whetever they want after downloading FM, from then onwards it's their game do do with as they wish. There's no such thing as cheating.
  12. 11 points
    “Know your enemy and know yourself and you can fight a hundred battles without disaster” ― Sun Tzu, The Art of War More Sun Tzu. I feel like an intellectual by adding these quotes, but honestly so many of the things I read have resonated with me (I will quote more before I am through). It helps in Total War games too! In this case, I am interested in knowing myself again. In particular, knowing my squad. There are two aspects to deal with here. Knowing the players you have, and knowing the players you want. Both are important to building a team (not just a tactic here). Since I am writing this based on my current save, it is difficult to show precise examples for knowing the squad you start with, because I have had 2.5 seasons at my current side to mould them how I want. So I will start with knowing the players I want. How players fit into my squad. In the previous posts I have written in detail about what I want the players to do. Now I need to ensure they can actually do these things. This means selecting the correct players in the correct positions. Not every player will be able to do what you are looking for, and for that reason the first few transfer windows at a club are all about buying players to fit by squad. I will discuss transfer targets, and management of the squad in another post. Here, I focus on understand what attributes I want from my players. I will take what I want them to do, and translate it into what attributes they need to have. The things I look for in all players. Before I dive into position specific traits I look for, there are some things I want in all my players. Determination, teamwork, and work rate. I want a hard working and determined squad, because in my head these attributes will create a resilient side who will always give their best, and will not get too dispirited if they fall behind. I am not interested in players with determination below 13 (for top levels, this can scale with the league you play in and I am to be in the top 3 for determination in the league). Any player below 13 determination is not interesting to me, unless they are spectacular. Likewise, I usually aim for over 15. This is all because I want my players to care, to fight, to not give up. I think (although never tested) that if you have a bunch of players identical in all attributes except the one has 15 for determination and the other 5, the group with 15 would be more successful. For teamwork and work rate, it boils down to similar things. I want players to work as part of a whole that can be greater than the sum of its parts. Equally, I am asking a lot for many players in the tactic I described, so they will need to be able to work hard. I am less stringent about players below 13 in these attributes, but again I would avoid them if I can. Position specific things. Let’s start with the easiest positions. The goalkeeper and central defenders. I just need them to be as good as possible. My ‘keeper needs to be able to save shots (which my aggressive stance will likely give the opposition not infrequently). There is nothing special here. The central defenders likewise. They need to have the best possible attributes for defenders. Since I am playing from the back, it will help if they have composure and are not terrible at passing. I do not want them to panic and give the ball away under pressure. Since I am playing with a high line, a bit of pace will not hurt. I am not really bothered about PPMs for these guys. Just be aware of them, so you know what to expect from a player. Here are my current first team goalkeeper and defenders (Maguire and Schmeichel were already at the club). We can stick with the defence, and look at fullbacks. They need to be good all round fullbacks. Stamina is very useful, because I want them shuttling up and down the flanks all game. They also need to be able to cross pretty well, because I am going to be asking them to cross the ball. The better they can cross, the more dangerous they will be. It goes without saying that decent defensive stats will always be useful for a defender. In addition, decent passing (they need to be able to link with the wide player in front of them and the midfield to recycle the ball due to “work ball into box”) and vision (spot a possible ball to play to split a defence) is good. This covers pretty much any full back in the game, so there is not much special here. Here are the players I am currently using. They were both at the club when I took over, and I have not seen the need to replace them (and we have good rotation options too). I will move on to the striker now. Mostly because it is again quite simple. I am looking for an archetypal DLF, or CF to play here. The attributes that go with that are obviously important. In addition, I find the PPMs “plays with back to goal” and “comes deep to get ball” are quite useful, given the description of how I will use the striker to create chances for others. He must be a creator as much as a finisher. As such, passing and vision are also very good attributes to have. For this reason, you could even convert an AMC to this role, if he is strong enough to hold the ball. He is almost like an advanced playmaker. The current player I have here actually does not fit this mould…yet. He was someone my scouts found who looks to have incredible potential (and he was on a free). So I am playing the long game with him and hoping he gets better. His PPMs are perfectly suited to what I said above, but his passing and vision are not really good enough yet. Note I also broke my rule on teamwork for this guy. An important note, you can break your own guidelines if you think the player is worth it. Worst case scenario here is I sell him for a huge profit at some point. The two wide players are next. Here we have to pay attention first to footedness. When I took over Leicester, their wide players were all right footed. So I will stick with that. It make sense for how I play. A right footed player cuts in from the left and a right footed player crosses from the right. This means I am simply not interested in left footed wingers right now, unless they can use both feet well. Another thing to pay attention to. There is again nothing too special here, I am using these roles as the game describes them. So I use the game as a guide for what is good for each role. I like my IF to have good anticipation, dribbling, pace, vision, passing and finishing. A good long shot doesn’t hurt either. PPM wise cuts in from the left is useful to have. And Flair is lovely. Never underestimate how good it can be to have a player do something unexpected. This is my IF, who I signed in my first full season specifically to play in this role. He is my leading scorer in my current season, with 19 goals (which means my ideas are working, by the way!). The same goes for the winger, I use the game as a guide. Pace, dribbling, crossing, are important. Again, Flair is nice to have. There is not really that much to say about picking a good winger that people do not already know or is not already in the game. The player I have here was signed in my first full season too, and has turned out to be a steal. He is not an ideal player (and I have a youngster I am grooming who I will talk about later to take over), but he has been spectacular at times. One thing I do want to point out is that his combination of flair and long shots lead to some of the most insanely wonderful goals where he cuts in off the right after some sublime bit of skill. Do not underestimate how nice it can be to have a player do something unexpected. He is also two footed, which is always nice. So, we now get to the really interesting part for me. My midfield. The midfield is utterly critical to everything I do, and I do not always want to stick to the default attributes the game says are important here. Firstly, I would prefer all my midfielders to be decent tacklers. Or at worse not absolutely awful in defence. I need them to be able to break up play, and all of them to be good at this. I do not have room for luxury players in my squad – I would not play an Ozil type player, for example. Let’s now look at each position one by one and see where I depart from standard ideas of attributes. The DMC is probably the most important but least appreciated (definitely by rating) members of my squad. He has to be a dual function player. Firstly, he is there to shield the defence, break up counters, make tackles, etc. So he need to be a good DM(S) or DM(D). Secondly, he is my pivot. I use him to move attacks from left to right, and act as someone who is always free for a pass, and then to give it on to someone else. He does not need to do fancy things, but he needs to also act like an auxiliary DLP. So he needs to be a really good all round player. You can get away with a regular DM, but the dynamism of the tactic is aided so much by having a versatile player. Here is the guy I play. Another new signing specifically bought for this role. He even has the “tries killer balls” PPM, which will make him act like a play maker more often. He is exactly what I want. The DLP in midfield is kinda the opposite to the DMC. I want him to be primarily a playmaker who can also defend very well. I basically want the same player as I have for the DMC role, but I put more weight on passing, vision, etc. when picking this player. I want the DLP and DM to basically be interchangeable. This is again critical to making my midfield work. I have selected a DM(S) and DLP(S), but they are performing very similar roles in my tactic. Again, I could playmaker here who is not good at defending, but I feel my team would suffer defensively. I was lucky enough to take over Leicester not long after they had bought Tonali, so I had a readymade player in this position. Finally, the CM(A). He is my favourite player actually. Think about what I want him to do. He needs to act like a SS sometimes (get beyond the striker and score), an AP other times (get the ball in the AM strata and create chances for others. He needs to be able to press. He needs to be able to defend. I am asking a huge amount from this player. There are not many players who will be able to do all this, so you may have to prioritize. I usually make defending less important as he is the most advanced of the midfield, and his main job is to create and score. So what attributes do I want? Well, to start he needs good finishing, off the ball, passing, vision, decisions, first touch. Which is probably not even an exhaustive list. The PPM “gets forward whenever possible” is great here. So is “plays one-twos” which encourages nice interactions with the striker. These players are hard to come by. I actually tend to try to convert AMCs or even strikers to this role. I also prioritize scoring over creating over defending when looking at attributes. I used Maddison in this role (already at the club), or Hojbjerg (who was signed for pittance from Southampton because they did not think he was good enough). Again, you can see how his attributes fit the mould of the player I need perfectly. Conclusions There you are. I am not sure this will be as clear as previous posts, because I have gotten very good at unconsciously picking players after doing it for several years. This means it can be difficult to articulate exactly what I look for. The point I want to get across is that you have to think about what the players need to do in your tactic. Not just what attributes the roles you select require. For me, this is most important in the midfield, where I want to have lots of versatility. Feel free to ask about things here, so I can try to explain things that are not so clear! In the next post, I want to expand on how I manage my squad. This will move away from the tactical side of things to discuss how to build for long term success (hopefully) and stability.
  13. 11 points
    This post is cannibalised from one I made in a different thread where someone asked me to discuss how I was set up. I will use it because it is a pretty good description of the thought that went into this tactic. I will point out that it was more iterative than it appears here. As I have noted, I have played this way for years now. Hence, I have really worked on how this tactic works, and I have adapted it over time. Also note that this is the basic way I will play, thinking about games where I expect to be able to win. There will be various things that I do in real situations during matches. These I will discuss in a later post. The purpose of this post is to show the thought process behind how to put my vision discussed in the first post into action. We will start with the shape. This is the basis of everything I will do. I do not have any player roles yet, no mentality, no instructions, nothing. How did I decide on this shape? Well, I typically play as not quite top sides to start with, so I like to have a DMC to give a bit of defensive cover. I also like to push my fullbacks high up the pitch – attractive attacking football in my head means we have lots of attacking options, including fullbacks. It also may be force of habit. You could easily think of ways to make everything I discuss work in other tactical frameworks. So, what I need to do next is to work out how I want to score goals. How will I create my attacking attractive football? As I just said, I want lots of attacking options. I want to have many players who could score goals. This should create variety, and variety is attractive in football. So how will I create my space? I will start with my striker. Where is there space around him? It is behind him. I want him to move into this space. So I will pick a DLF(S), who will move into this space. So what space is going to be created by the DLF and his movement? Hopefully, he is going to drag the central defenders out of position. The aim is to make one of the CBs follow him deeper. Alternatively, if nobody does that, he will be in a position to receive the ball. Imagine I have created a bit of space in the centre of the pitch by dragging a CB with my DLF. Who can I put into the gap I have created? Well, there are two options. I can try to put a wide player into a central position, or I can try to get a central midfielder to overlap the striker. Let’s do both. This gives me two more roles; an IF(A) and a CM(A). I will put them on opposite sides to try to exploit opposite channels (and overload the defence). Note that they could be on either side, here I illustrate how I play when I have right footed wide players. I now have two methods to score goals. They both rely on the movement of the DLF though. The DLF drops back and gets the ball. A CB either comes with him, or rushes to close him down because he has the ball in a pocket of space in a dangerous area. The DLF can then pass the ball either to the IF or the CM. These two players can then either shoot or they can support each other further in creating a change. This is another good reason to have both players overlapping. They can support each other after the DLF has done his job, with a scrabbling defence. On paper, this looks very nice. Okay, we still have many players who do not have roles yet. What shall we do with them? Let us start with the other midfielder. He needs to be a more holding type of player since we have a movement based player next to him. What do I actually want him to do? One thing is to feed the ball to the DLF. He also needs to be able to take advantage of the space the DLF creates without passing him the ball. Or to recycle the ball if there is no chance. I have just described a playmaker to you. I usually use a DLP(S), but there is no reason an AP(S) would not work. I typically want him slightly deeper because I am always nervous about too many players being forward. This adds another way to score goals. The DLP can pass to the CM(A) or IF(A) as they run into space created by the DLF. There is also no reason the DLF cannot also make his own forward movement to get on one of these passes. What other space have we created? Well, the IF(A) is cutting off his wing, so we have space on the left flank. Let’s put someone in that space too. That means we need an attack minding fullback, typically I use a FB(A). This is creating an overload on the left of my attack. The defence will hopefully have to commit players to their right to deal with this threat. If my striker drifts towards the left too, even better. More overloading, more defenders required. Why is this good? Well, if I can force the defence to drift to my left, I have created space on my right flank. Space, incidentally, which I want to put my CM(A) into. So what about the right midfielder? You could have another IF to exploit this space, but this is typically not how I play. If I flood the right of the defence as well, the opposition may not over commit to defending their right flank. So lets keep the width with a winger. On support, because I want him in space to start with (not pressed against the defensive line, he will be less dangerous there. This creates another way to score goals straight up. Two ways, really. The first would be a cross from the left flank to the right, with the winger (who will drift in for such things), CM(A) or DLF all potentially available for a cross. Equally, a cross from the right wing to the left will find an IF(A), and possible the DLF. Sometimes even the left back gets super adventurous. Who shall I pair the winger with? Well, actually, this role depends a lot on the situation. A FB(A) can also work here if I want to really overload the defence. This makes it very hard for a defending team to commit enough men to any one area. I could also use a more defensive role if I want to have additional defensive cover, a FB(D) for example. With the CM(A) bombing forward there is even scope for using an IWB to give me another body in the middle of the park (I do not do this a lot). There are 4 more roles to assign, only one of which is interesting. What do I want the DMC to do? Well, a little of everything. He needs to be a bit of a destroyer, not letting anyone get easily past him. At the same time, he needs to hold his position to provide defensive cover at all times, because I am set up very aggressive. Finally, I want him to act as a pivot to help recycle the ball from left to right, and vice versa (in combination with the DLP). So I usually play a simple DM(S) here, and make sure a have (or buy) a player who is capable of doing all these things. It is a very demanding role. Finally, the CBs are simple CD(S), and the goalkeeper a GK(D). I do not need them to do anything fancy. Just stop goals from being scored. This is a long, involved post, probably the longest I will make. The conclusions to take are: 1. I have created a tactic based only one what I want to see happen, using common sense. 2. I have created at least 4 common ways I should score a goal. This is only counting what I do with possession, not set plays or counter attacks. 3. You will notice I have no talked about any team instructions, player instructions, mentality, etc. I feel this is secondary to me. I will discuss it in the next post.
  14. 10 points
    @Double0Seven makes some very good points. SI appreciate any constructive feedback, but many of the negative comments in this thread have been more destructive than anything. Personally, I am sick to the back teeth of certain self-centred, self-entitled users crying that the game is "broken" or "unplayable" and not backing them up. Whenever anybody challenges them for proof, they get defensive and just say, "I don't need to give proof. Look in the bugs forums, there's your proof." There have been a couple of times during FM19's life cycle when I have stuck up for SI and pointed out that a "broken" game mechanic might not be "broken", and I have been called a "fanboy" in response. A few days ago, in a similar incident to Mitja calling D0S a "secret agent", I posted in the bugs forum to say that regularly being 'FMed' might be a tactical issue rather than a game bug - and I was asked if I worked for SI. This assumption by some users that the game is "broken", and that anyone who defends it is a "fanboy" or a SI lapdog needs to STOP. We are just pointing out why something might not be "broken", and we get abused for it. There've been several instances in this thread where mods have stepped in when arguments have got out of hand, and - in extreme cases - taken disciplinary action. That still hasn't worked with certain users. I honestly think this thread should just be closed (and a new one started up), and that mods should take stricter action against disruptive repeat offenders. I have been a member of the SI community since 2008 (and a regular poster since 2013), and I am ashamed at what it has become. Unless things take a dramatic turn for the better, this will - in all likelihood - be my final post. (And should this post be deleted, then you can pretty much guarantee that I will never return.) Good day.
  15. 9 points
    On the flipside, I cannot fathom how some people insist that it's not broken and deny some of these problems exist, especially with regards to the ME, when they are occurring virtually EVERY single match for me, and seemingly for others too. We are asked for proof of it happening by some nay-sayers but it baffles me how they cannot see it for themselves. Are these people not watching their games? Either that or they are just deliberately denying it on here to try and wind people up. I don't see a third reason. But I will gladly keep posting feedback as I feel that a number of my posts on here have been quite detailed rather than just an "it's broken" whinge. And, whilst it is true that a number of reports in the bugs forum have not been followed up with sufficient information from the original poster, there are others that have. Unfortunately, there are occasions when these bugs have been acknowledged but not been able to be fixed. I'll post just one example of each, reported in the bugs forum: Long Shots. My top scorers are my LW who cuts inside and scores from the edge of the area (19 goals in my 1st season) and my BBM who added another 11, mainly from outside the box. Issues with Crossing. Either the crosses are just smashed into a defender or are hit so far over that the only player capable of reaching them is the winger on the other side. Poor defending from corners No marking from throw-ins. Defensive Heading. I think this one annoys me the most. Defenders heading the ball straight back to the opposition when there is nobody near them and no threat. Defenders just stand there and let the striker run past them. Static strikers. Frustrating to see your strikers just standing there, lettign the game pass them by. These are major issues which have all been acknowledged but can't be fixed. I manage Cardiff and we have a number of players with a long throw, a viable tactic which has been used irl to great effect (just ask England about Gunnarsson's long throws for Iceland at Euro 2016) but if I use it in FM19 it's too easy as, no matter how I set it up, we always end up with player(s) unmarked. Because this couldn't be fixed, the advice given was not to use a throw-in routine. Fine for most teams but this is an important aspect of how Cardiff play irl yet I can't use it properly. Another frustrating one is strikers failing to score when one-on-one, instead hitting it straight at the GK, yet give them a chance out wide and they will more than likely beat the GK at his near post from the tightest of angles. There are mentions of this in the bugs forum but none of them with sufficient info or pkms so I won't link to any of them. If I have time, I will instead create my own thread on there about it. The main problem with the strikers that I find is that they just get ignored. Wingers cross to the winger on the other side, completely bypassing the striker. I played a game recently where my LW crossed all the way over to my RW who then crossed it all the way back to my LW to score I'll have to find it and upload it here, just to show I'm not "self-centred" i.e. apparently lying. There are more bugs too, some that I have yet to experience myself e.g. GK tackling their own defender which seems to have been reported a number of times. And there are others what I would call minor issues that can be annoying but not game changing: Ref sometimes blows the whistle just before a goal goes in. This makes you wonder if it's been disallowed for a foul or offside. And then not blowing at all when a penalty has been awarded which is quite confusing. A display issue with too many goals being classed as overhead kicks. Magic spray not showing for free kicks, and probably more I've yet to come across.
  16. 9 points
    So it's time to conclude this unofficial guide with some examples of what IMO a well-balanced defensive setup on one hand, and a defensive overkill on the other would look like. But before that, I owe you my thoughts on one more team instruction I forgot to mention in the previous two posts - Use offside trap (thanks to @sovy666 who reminded me ). I believe you all know what Offside trap means, so the actual question is when it can be wise for you to use it. My personal theory is that the following conditions need to be satisfied for me to consider the use of offside trap: - defenders (or at least central ones) need to be of similar quality and characteristics - they also need to be tactically intelligent in the first place (anticipation, decisions, teamwork...), and preferably also possess some speed, because if the trap fails - which occasionally is certainly going to happen - faster defenders will logically have a better chance to correct the mistake than slower ones - perhaps not necessary, but I personally prefer my centre-backs to have played together for some time, so that they would know each other well-enough and thus be as coordinated as possible - It's not advisable to use OT when playing with a lower defensive line, because if it fails, there will be little defenders could do - centre-backs should play on the same duty, so that they would hold the line better. Perhaps this is not always necessary, but is at least advisable IMHO Now that the Offside trap has been sorted out, let's get to the examples... Example No. 1 of a good defensive setup You want to play a typical possession-based style of football, looking to keep the ball as much as possible, patiently building your attacks up until an opening occurs in the opposition defense. Let's assume you picked the right formation and set up all roles, duties and attacking team instructions in the right way. So what about defensive instructions? - mentality: positive - in (defensive) transition: counter-press - out of possession: higher d-line, higher LOE, prevent short GKD (optionally use offside trap) Example No. 1 of a risky defensive setup - mentality: positive - in (defensive) transition: counter-press - out of possession: (much) higher d-line, (much) higher LOE, prevent short GKD, extremely urgent pressing, get stuck in, use tighter marking (optionally use offside trap) You see the difference between the good and the risky setup? It's obvious. * * * Example No. 2 of a good defensive setup You want to play a fast and intensive attacking style of football. As in the previous example, you have set everything else in the right way, only the defensive part remains. - mentality: attacking - in (defensive) transition: counter-press - out of possession: higher d-line, standard LOE, use tighter marking (optionally prevent short GKD, use offside trap) Example No. 2 of a risky defensive setup - mentality: (very) attacking - in (defensive) transition: counter-press - out of possession: (much) higher d-line, (much) higher LOE, prevent short GKD, more or extremely urgent pressing, get stuck in, use tighter marking (optionally use offside trap) So the difference between the "right" and the "wrong" is basically very similar to the one described in the Example No. 1. * * * Example No. 3 of a good defensive setup In this case, you want to play a bit more conservative style of football that looks to rely on solid defense and swift counter-attacks whenever a good opportunity presents itself. Once again, you have everything set up well, only the defensive part is "missing". So, let's see... - mentality: balanced - in (defensive) transition: none (optionally regroup) - out of possession: standard d-line, lower LOE, use tighter marking (optionally get stuck in) Example No. 3 of a risky defensive setup - mentality: positive - in (defensive) transition: counter-press - out of possession: much higher d-line, much lower LOE, more or extremely urgent pressing, get stuck in, use tighter marking, prevent short GKD Example No. 3 of an overly passive defensive setup - mentality: cautious - in (defensive) transition: regroup - out of possession: (much) lower d-line, (much) lower LOE, (much) less urgent pressing, stay on feet * * * Example No. 4 of a good defensive setup Finally, you are a complete underdog playing against a much stronger team, so your primary goal is just to (try to) avoid a defeat if possible (rather than looking to win). - mentality; defensive - in (defensive) transition: regroup - out of possession: standard d-line, lower LOE, use tighter marking Example No. 4 of an overly passive defensive setup - mentality; (very) defensive - in (defensive) transition: regroup - out of possession: (much) lower d-line, (much) lower LOE, (much) less urgent pressing, stay on feet * * * Now, after looking at all the above examples, I guess you see the point of this unofficial guide on defending. If not - any questions are welcome (as well as constructive criticism )
  17. 8 points
  18. 8 points
    I thought I would show you how it all this planning comes together to produce the results I want. I am currently managing Leicester, and the results I will show you are after 2.5 years in charge. I took over them midway through a season with them struggling bottom. I chose them over Newcastle, who were doing better in the league at the time, because I felt they had a much better balance to the squad to start. There was less work for me to do at the time. The players I had were also pretty well suited to what I wanted to do. There were two good strikers in the squad. Four quality wing backs. Morrison and Tonali in midfield when I arrived were absolutely perfect for the central midfield duo. I knew I would be able to take this squad to better things with a few signings. Just a few words on the signings I made. I do not have the screenshots to show you the evolution of the squad from when I took over to now. I never planned to write this thread at the time. So I will do it from memory. In the first January I signed Hojbjerg to give me depth in midfield, and to provide me with the tools I needed there immediately to succeed. It was the weakest area by far. The first summer transfer window I sorted out the AMR and AML position. Here I did not have a lot of money to spend. So I brought in two relatively cheap players. Andre Horta came from the USA to play AML, and has been excellent. Otero came in from Watford, who had just been relegated. He was initially a stop gap, but has played his way into my long term plans. He has the habit of scoring absolute wonder goals in important matches when we really need something. That is absolutely invaluable. I also signed various young players my scouts had found to integrate into the team eventually. The start of the third season, I signed Stones for 17.5 million, which is an absolute bargain. I did not need a CB at the time, but you do not turn down a chance like that. I had finished in the top four (never really challenged for the title seriously) so I could attract better players. I also signed another DMC who is more creative to complete my midfield (a regen who my scouts rated very highly). Joveljic came in to complete the AMRL complement of my side. I also signed a young right winger to eventually replace Otero, and because again my scouts rated him highly and I agreed. I already detailed my transfers for the third season above. At the same time, I sold players who I did not need or want. The reason I talk about this is because it is just as important to the results I show you as is the tactical side. As I have said many times in this thread, tactics and squad building are linked. Inextricably. In each window I identified the area of my team I needed to improve, and did it. Now I am at the point where I do not need to make many signings in a transfer window to evolve the team. I am happy. I will show the stats for the team, which was also in a post above (ignore the boxes now). What do these tell us? Well, let us link this back to the second post. I had designed the tactic so that the left winger and the right CM would be in a position to score goals. That they are the top scorers over the season shows that this has worked. The striker has also contributed which is nice. Indeed, only one player in the first team rotation did not score a goal. This, to me, suggests that we are creating a lot of varied chances and are not over reliant on any one thing. Looking at assists, we will see that my DLP (Tonali) and the CM(A) (Morrison) have the most. Both full backs have also contributed a lot. As has the right wing position. Link this back to the original post. I was trying to put the CM(A) into a position where he could score and create. He has clearly done this. I will note that Morrison takes free kicks and penalties, which inflate these statistics a little bit. Again note that assists come from all over the team. We are creating a lot of different types of chances. So we can be pleased with what we are seeing. Am I actually seeing the type of goals I wanted and expected to see though? I actually watched back all the goals I scored this season and made a note of what caused them. I will not list all of them, just the most important. The main type of goal we scored was on the counter. I counted 10 goals which were counter attacking. This is partly expected since I do have “counter” set in my tactic, and I have a bunch of good fast players. My favourite goal of the year was a counter, against Manchester United. 18 goals resulted in crosses, either from L/RFB or from L/WR. This was something I expected and wanted to see from my tactic. We scored a bunch of goals from overloading one side of the pitch, leaving the over side with space, and finding the opposite winger or striker. I see what I wanted to see. Most of the rest of the goals that did not come from dead ball situations were from the interactions between the DLP, CM(A) and DLF. This was the use of these players to create and exploit space. I did not see many goals from overlapping of the CM with the DLF, but 6 goals came directly from the CM exploiting the space the DLF left (for the CM I should say). There were 10 goals where the interaction of the DLP and CM(A) create space for a through ball to someone else in the side. Here is an example of the DLF and CM interacting to score a goal (a very important early goal on the last day of the season). And you know how I noted Otero scoring when we really need him. Check out this monstrosity of a goal. Note that this only takes into account the actual goals. Not the chances we create. I see similar trends when looking at chances. We average at least 10 shots per game, almost always good or decent quality. We could probably up the goals easily by having better players than I currently do. In particular my striker and LW blew hot and cold during the season. More consistency would give more goals. So there is definitely room for improvement, but hopefully that comes with success. To conclude, following my formula definitely works for me. I planned my tactic, and got the players who can implement it. This lead to the attractive football I wanted to see, and results that exceeded my pre season objectives.
  19. 7 points
  20. 7 points
    José Mourinho: Tactics, Inter 3 Barcelona 1 – Masterclass good tactic explain from mourinho
  21. 7 points
    @Rashidi I'm not sure that's really the point tbh. In FM19 it's more to do with strikers shooting straight at the GK far too many times. I can understand the frustration, @Novem9 but, again, it's not necessarily the standard of the GK or the great saves he appears to make. It's almost entirely about the lack of awareness/intelligence when a striker is through on goal and the seeming inability to shoot anywhere but right at the GK. It becomes even more frustrating when just about any player can smash one into the top corner from 30yds. Now I'm not saying that happens all the time but somewhere earlier in this thread were a number of examples from plenty of different contributors of how the conversion rates for long shots are quite unrealistic. And when you add that to the relatively simple one-on-one chances being squandered, it just compounds the issue.
  22. 7 points
    Dark and Light version with dark/light mode Twitter page:
  23. 7 points
    Yeah, to be fair, there's no issue with a post like that @Earnie is God! and @Amarante. Sometimes these issues are frustrating, particularly when they either a) haven't been fixed or b) did receive tweaks but not to your satisfaction. Feedback (on FM19 ) is important here and the bigger issues or bugs, particularly if you have examples, should be reported in the bugs forum or added to existing threads. The more examples SI have, the better. The issue with posts in here or in general, is where they offer nothing like a simple "game is garbage". That doesn't help anyone, SI included, it doesn't generate discussion etc. It isn't constructive in any way. That's not to say you can't criticise something - of course you can. Just be civil about it and offer your feedback on it in a constructive way. When it starts getting destructive, everyone gets defensive, fights starts and discussion degenerates. ----------- If there are issues with a post though, like insulting users or the like, I would really suggest reporting it instead of directly confronting the user. We can the review the situation.
  24. 7 points
    It should be about how good you are at your job. Not about what's between your legs... No reason to hire a woman just because it's good PR and it makes for good publicity. Or to fill a quota. I don't think it'd be much of a problem, provided the female manager is respected and regarded as competent enough. Of course a woman would have to face a bit more resistance due to the old prejudice about women not knowing a lot about football. But if someone's in contention for a high-profile job at a profesional (or top) club, that issue would have probably already been put to rest.
  25. 7 points
    Pretty interested in you providing a link to a post from a Mod which states the ME and AI tactics have "huge" issues. There are plenty of cases of Mods saying things can be improved but "huge" issues? Good luck with that. Anyway, as I and others have said before in this thread, this thread is supposed to be about constructive feedback. Rhetoric and hyperbole ("even Mods say that" ) is, as @CFuller rightly points out, destructive. If you can't have a civilised conversation with someone who happens to share a different opinion, then don't bother. I'm sick and tired of it too. Enough warnings have been left, it's probably about time we followed up on them.
  26. 7 points
    “Treat your men as you would your own beloved sons. And they will follow you into the deepest valley.” ― Sun Tzu, The Art of War More Sun Tzu to start this post. This one is slightly over dramatic I think, but it serves my purpose to make my first point. This post is going to deal with how I handle my players, and in particular their contracts, and how/when I will make transfer offers. This deals with several issues I see cropping up on the board time and again. Unhappy players. Low transfer offers. Unable to sign the players you want. I will try to show you how I attempt to avoid each of these pitfalls. A word of warning. This is a text heavy, picture light post. All of this eventually comes back to my philosophy as well. I want to build a well-run club. I want them to be able to continue their success for some time after I am gone (until an AI manager dismantles everything I created). I want every player to improve while at my club. To leave a better player. This is as fundamental to me as how I play football games. FM is a total package for me. I want to win matches, and I want to be at a well-run club. The two go hand-in-hand. I also want to make sure I always have the players available to me to achieve what I want. Let’s start with this, then. There is little point talking about my players until I tell you who these players should be. Building my first team. Squad building is one of the fundamental things in FM you should master. That does not just mean buying the very best players – although that is a part of it. It is about having the right players. The right number of players in each position. With the correct expectation of their playing time. So first I will talk about the composition of my squad. Goalkeepers. I will typically keep a single first choice ‘keeper who plays the majority of my games. The only time I rotate the goalkeeper is when I am in a transition season between an old first choice and a new, young player coming through. I also have one back up. This can be either a regular backup ‘keeper, who can be as good or crap as you like. I prefer to have a younger player though, who I can groom to replace a current player in the future. Right/Left backs. I want 4 players in these positions. Each needs to follow the rules I gave in the last post. Since my full backs get through an awful lot of work, I do rotate here. That means I really need to have 4 players who are able to start at any given game. You can of course have a first choice, but the backup needs to be good. Center backs. I do not rotate CBs more than I have to due to fatigue or injury. I like a solid partnership to develop. I am old-fashioned that way. So I will always have to first choice CBs who play most games. The backup here will have to be good enough to step in when required, but he can be a bit worse than the main players. The better he is, the more he will have to play (this is a general rule to remember) to stay happy. I also typically have one younger CB who can play the odd game. If he is good enough, he can move to number 3 CB over time. Striker. Sorry, orderly progression of positions disrupted. As always, my central midfield is the most complex area of my team. I play with a single striker, so I will typically have two main strikers. One may be first choice, or you can freely rotate them. Depends on the players I have. I also keep a young backup incase of an injury crisis and to get some experience. If he impresses, he can move up in the rankings. Wide players. This is like fullbacks but with an extra caveat. They have to be all right (or left, it does not matter so long as they are all the same) footed, or very good with both feet. I rotate these positions a lot, because they also get through a lot of work. So all should be able to start. Midfield. Well, I discussed last post how my midfielders need to be somewhat interchangeable. I have 3 midfield slots, and typically have 6 players who can play there. These players will also see a fair bit of rotation (they get tired a lot), so I need 6 good players, but you can sneak by with 5. Typically the backup for DM will also be able to be a backup for the DLP. The backup for CM(A) can likely also play as a DLP (if you are lucky). So I can rotate 2/3 players in all situations. You can always have a like-for-like replacement too. So how many players do I have in my first team? I have mentioned 23 players, including the younger players. This gives me a lot of wiggle room to include additional players, or deal with home grown registration issues. I honestly do not think you need much more than 23 players in a first team squad. Player priority and the 18 month rule. How do I go about managing this squad of players? For me, there are 4 different types of players. Key players, rotation options, emergency backups, and youngsters. I treat each of these very differently, as you will see. What is the 18 month rule I mention here? This is my own personal rule for handling contracts and transfers. I do everything on a sliding 18 month basis. What that means is I know exactly what I expect my squad to look like in a year and half. Always. I plan my contracts around this, I plan my scouting around this, my shortlists, my transfer offers. I will explain how I apply this to my players. Key players are exactly what they sound like. They are the best players in my team, who will start most matches and who I really do not want to lose. Aside from playing a lot, and being great, they get long contracts. As long as possible. I want them at my club long term. So get them tied down, and keep them tied down. I try to keep them on contracts of at least 3 years. This makes them a lot more expensive to buy, so either you get no offers, or very big ones. It also means if a player gets unsettled, you never have to worry about them running out of contract. Only when they start to approach the end of the careers to I keep these players on shorter contracts. Rotation players are again exactly what they sound like. They are the players who are not first choice, but can do a job. These guys are fluid. There are a bunch of rotation options at every level. So you can almost certainly replace these guys. If you think you cannot, they are key players already. Treat them like it. Contractually, this means I will assess them every 6 months to see if I want them in my next 18 month plan. Can I get someone better? Has a youngster taken their place? I rarely have them on contracts longer than 3 years. I want to be able to get rid of them easily when the time comes. Bids for these players are always negotiable and a fair price is always accepted. Backup players are for emergency cover, for mentoring, or for influence. I am loyal when I play, so older club legends usually end up here. They do not get to play a lot unless there is an injury crisis. They are never on contracts longer than 2 years, because if I want to get rid of them I can do so easier. Transfer offers will almost always be accepted for these guys. Youngsters are again obvious. You can break it down further into players who may one day play for the first team, and players who will not. Players who I think can play for the first team will get long contracts and first team exposure as much as possible. Players who will not get short contracts that end when they are between 18 and 20. At that point, we release them to the wider world and wish them the best. If I am really not sure, I will offer players short contract extensions. Conclusion There are two things to take away from this. The first is that you should plan for how your team will look at some point in the future. For me it is 18 months. Plan your contracts around this. Offer them ahead of time for players you really want to keep. Do not have backups on long contracts so you cannot ditch them easily. There is a whole element to planning transfers around this too, but this post will already be long, so I will save that for another time. The second thing to take away is that if your player does not fit into this scheme, you do not need them. If you have a player who is good enough to be a first team player, but you want to use him as a backup, sell them. If you have a rotation option you do not trust to play, sell them. I will try to make all my players better footballers, but they have to give something back in return. I think a lot of people have problems with happiness because they do not follow this rule of thumb. I very rarely get issues with player unhappiness. Again, this is a long post full of my rambling ideas. I think that properly assembling a squad is absolutely critical to success though. As much as designing a tactic is.
  27. 6 points
    There's fairly obvious logic, that people have pointed out to you. You just disagree with it. This isn't real life. In real life, this happens, then Fiorentina probably still have massive reservations over selling. They'll absolutely accept less from a non-rival, probably around their original asking price, and add a good chunk on if any rivals ask. But if they were to come in with an astronomical offer, the human side would kick in, and human logic would dictate they'd likely accept. Fine. But when you're in game, you have to look at it differently. In real life, do you really think Juventus are going to want Chiesa so badly that they're willing to essentially double an asking price (or pay a hefty premium, which is maybe more likely)? Or would they go away and find a better target that would be cheaper? Is Chiesa a Fiorentina fan? Do the Juve fans care about the rivalry or is it more one way? Would he be a popular signing? All of these would come into the decision in real life, but in an FM sense... Read all of 1, and then realise that essentially none of that matters in FM. It's trying to model a real life transfer market using the very limited script of whatever SI can code into the AI. It is massively lacking in context, and sorely lacking in the sort of human common sense decisions that would be obvious in real life. It is (usually) incredibly easy to outmanoeuvre the AI in negotiations and get them to play to your tune. It's a very simplistic system, and this particular example is a very simplistic one. But essentially, none of the above really matters, because what you're seeing is a crutch that the users demanded was included. In previous code bases, Fiorentina would just say that he wasn't for sale to your bid. Users didn't like that, so it was changed that in these cases, they would demand a ridiculous amount to put people off. If people were willing to match that stupid amount, then fine, but it's essentially a binary decision. A no, right up until you trip the switch and it's a yes. So basically, this is behaving logically by the game's own rules. Fiorentina don't want to sell to you under any circumstances, but user feedback has meant that now means they'll accept an arbitrary and ridiculous amount. If you think it's ultimately wrong, raise it as a bug with supporting evidence and argue the point to SI. Nothing is "broken" here.
  28. 6 points
    This game is seriously ticking me off now. Not only, as a Mac owner, do I have to make the choice between massively slow and laggy game (normal setting), or one that crashes every 1-2 game weeks (public beta), but I have the vagaries of the ME to wind me up. Just played a game in League One as Northampton home v Doncaster. It's something like 8th v 7th with a few games left in the season. Playing the game, fairly even, we end up the game with more shots than them (21/20). But they win 5-2. "Oh but look at WHERE you're shooting from" is the normal response. "Can they be considered PROPER shots if you're just pinging them from 30 yards and they aren't in any danger of going in". You can't just go on number of shots etc. Trouble is, of our 21 shots, 6 were long shots, of which we scored 1. Of their 20 shots, 16 were long shots, of which they scored 5! Now if I play a game and the opposition only manages 4 attempts on goal from inside my penalty area, I would consider that fairly successful defensively speaking. Looking at the last 20 games I've played, 50% of the 24 goals I've conceded are long shots, going to 30 games it's 16/35 and at 40 games it's 21/46. So it's not like I'm conceding loads of goals, but the ones I am conceding seem to be more difficult to guard against. Now unless I change my tactics and stick a DM or two in to try and stop all long shots I don't know what to do. My keeper is decent but it's like a goal of the month highlights reel watching a lot of these shots fly past him. I'm much more concerned if a CM picks up the ball 25 yards out in a bit of space than if a striker is running through one on one with my keeper. Also, do the players follow instructions more the higher you go (League 1 is the highest I've been at) because a lot of the time I have to check my tactics to see what I've told them to do, because it sure isn't obvious from watching the games...
  29. 6 points
    I think this is something every manager does in one way or another (a lot of people still use a pen and paper) and I think there is an opportunity to integrate this into the game. I know there is a Squad Depth screen which is helpful but there are limitations to this including it being fairly rigid, for example, you have to look at it based on one of your formations at a time but I plan for 2 formations so in one formation I have an AMC and the other I have a DM but not the other way round. I think this feature should be a bit more free form (maybe the tactics pitch without a prescribed formation), being able to drag players in to various positions (even players that you plan to retrain) as well as being able to highlight the first choice and back up options as well as drafting in placeholders for "New LB Cover" for example, as well as transfer targets and youth players that may be able to step up (this could even go further e.g. identifying a young player to be involved in a pre-season tour and tracking his progress to the point where a decision is made about his immediate future). Players should also be able to be included in multiple positions if desired. Hopefully once the squad has been planned out, another element for inclusion would be identifying players that you wish to loan out or sell. Another element should be to somehow include squad rules for the competitions the team will be in, so squad limits and homegrown status as this feature should also highlight where you have too many players or not enough homegrown players etc.
  30. 6 points
    Game date: Sunday 10 May 2020 POST-MATCH Derby County (2) 5-0 (0) AFC Bournemouth RamsFanzine: Congratulations. You've done it. Derby County will be playing in the Premier League next season. Stuniverse: Thank you. I know. It's been an amazing day. Thank you very much. RamsFanzine: You came over very confident before kick-off. Were you really that confident, or was it bravado? Stuniverse: I was confident we had the ability to beat Bournemouth. Yes. The players have been unbelievable over these last few weeks. We looked dead and buried at one point. When Brighton opened up a five point cushion over us they were clear favourites. But my players never stopped believing. They continued to work hard and upped the intensity in training - maybe that's why we got so many injuries in the run-in, I don't know. We were playing well, even if we weren't always getting the results, we were creating chances. That's why I always felt we had a chance because we were creating chances. And then Brighton started to falter and lose a few matches. We played unbelievably well against Wolves yet we threw away a 2-0 lead in the last 15 minutes. We played Huddersfield Town off the park. All of those performances gave us confidence. I knew, if we played as we're capable of, we could beat Bournemouth. We did. And how. But the way Huddersfield Town played against us here when we comfortably beat them 4-1, I wasn't sure they'd be able to help us out. Fortunately for us, they did. RamsFanzine: When did you know? Stuniverse: Not until the final whistle in both games, but it was looking more and more likely as time passed in the second-half. Our game was going according to plan and Bournemouth didn't cause us many problems after the break. Jack Marriott got us off to a great early start, an own goal put us 2-0 up after 20 minutes although I thought Andre Wisdom had scored it at the time. Jack grabbed another on 52 minutes and at 3-0 we looked comfortable and the game had a different feel to the Wolves game. It was about then that we started taking an interest in what was going on at The John Smith's Stadium. Mason Bennett and Harry Wilson's late strikes were icing on the cake to round off an amazing day. RamsFanzine: What about the atmosphere today? Stunivere: The fans were absolutely brilliant today. We sold-out Pride Park, as we have done all season, and they never stopped singing from before the kick-off until after the final whistle. I'm so pleased that we got it done for our fans. The Huddersfield - Brighton game got us tense and nervous though. When we went 3-0 up here, it was 1-0 Huddersfield up there, and a goal for Brighton would've kept them up and sent us down. Even at 2-0 to Huddersfield, we couldn't relax because one Brighton goal could easily lead to a second and even a third with momentum as we saw first-hand when Wolves put three past us in the last 15 minutes recently. But it all worked out in the end. To hear our fans singing, "We're staying up, we're staying up, we're staying... Derby's staying up!" in the closing stages of this match, whilst we were scoring our fourth and fifth goals, I can't tell you how incredible that felt. It made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up on end. RamsFanzine: Congratulations again. Enjoy tonight. Stuniverse. Thank you. We will.
  31. 6 points
    Unfortunately development is still slow and I've not had too much extra time to put into EHM so far this year. I am however working on the editor this week though and have completed some game-side changes earlier this year already as well. I did get some work done around Xmas as well on EHM, so there has been some progress despite all the quiet time here on the forums. One thing I can reveal from the 1.5 changelist at this point is something that has been asked for many times: editing contract details like clauses, performance bonuses and yearly salaries plus the contract cap hit will be a part of the 1.5 editor. This year also saw another new addition to our family as Baby Boy Remes arrived, so my free time outside of office hours has been reduced even more. However I'll try and start teaching him coding and the Eastside way as soon as possible
  32. 6 points
    There's absolutely awful defending there but that is more an example of how bad defending should be punished...ie if defending is that bad then decision making employed and simulated in FM17 means that it gets exposed as it should. Movement, decision making and pass execution destroys bad defending as it should be so that shows attacking decision making was superior then. Yes defending was inferior then but the latest engine has inferior attacking decision making and movement...so really defending has advanced and attacking declined so current engine you could flip the dynamic...terrible attacking makes defending look good...yes defending is improved but bad decision making/movement makes it seem better. What should be upheld in that video and what FM17 offers is the superior attacking decision making and movement and were current engine at that level then the repeated attacking patterns currently wouldn't be a thing and the overall balance would be better. Pointing out bad defending on FM17 is valid but the slant on attacking in it is a limited view and frankly a regressive one to development of the match engine
  33. 6 points
    Well I agree! It's fun to imagine how tactics would play out in real life and test it in game, learning about football in the process. The simulation aspect is a huge part of the appeal of FM. I think in recent FMs something got lost somehow in the constant chase to make it more and more realistic, that makes it less fun though. I think it's not even the sheer huge amount of options we have (some of which are confusing), it's mostly how the options we choose play out in game. The tactical part of the game seems a) extremely sensitive, 1 bad choice of 1 role which might look sensible on paper will make your system crumble, b) it's very hard to tell if your system is working or not, the statistics/analysis tab has tons of info but is essentially unreadable mumbojumbo, c) the game can be very rock-paper-scissory and your tactic might be great in some circumstances and not in others. This can be a good thing, however it's extremely tricky to tell when is your tactic suitable and when it isn't, given how difficult it is to read the statistics analysis; d) this leads to a tactical game where to be truly successful above average you need to do in depth game-by-game analysis and subtle changes, but this runs at odds with the enjoyable fun of having the seasons breeze through and building a long-term career. Unless your full-time job is to play FM there's not enough real life time to do both. Switching to FM Touch doesn't help, it's the same tactical engine. Using plug-and-play tactics kinda helps but even them seem low scoring on FM19, and they kill the mini-game fun of doing at least some basical match-by-match tactical adaptations on your own. e) the AI reverts far too easily to an extremely defensive form in this version of the game. This leads to certain real-life concepts not working in game, because in so many matches there's less space on the pitch than there would be in real life. In theory what the FM human player should do in these circumstances, is to use more cautious mentalities to draw them away etc, but this seems to have stopped working all that effectively in FM19, plus this isn't even all that common a tactic in real life anyway. When's the last time you heard from real life pundits, that to beat a parked bus, you should stay back too and give them time on the ball? f) I actually think we have too FEW options. Roles are so restrictive and lock-in so much stuff that the end result is all of this is so super convoluted. I've lost count of the amount of times I had a situation in which for what I wanted, I either had to use role A with a certain TI; or role B with another TI; and neither played out like I wanted. There's certain basic things you still can't do in FM, like keeping a winger very out wide but NOT behave like a classic winger that runs and crosses, just keep him there as a passing option to give your team width; or telling a winger to NOT track back on the defensive phase, gambling through having less defensive cover to then keep him as an easy out ball for a counter through the wings. Or have a striker/winger hybrid, keep him constantly roaming wide from the ST position trying to occupy both CB and FB. I've tried all of this and failed to simulate it all in FM. g) buggy/badly simulated things like so many easy side passes to the wing being constantly missed by world class passers. Fast mid-height crosses being apparently easier to finish acrobatically with your feet, than well controlled one-on-one situations (?!). I could go on and on, but clearly am just disillusioned and burnt out with the game right now.
  34. 6 points
    Looping I think it's about time you took a long hard look at yourself and what this game is making you do. This forum is not just some online resource which you can take from whenever you feel the need. It's a community of people who willingly give up their own free time to discuss issues and help others. Can you understand that? People who willingly give up their own free time. That is not something to use and abuse. And over a number of years and literally hundreds of posts that is precisely what you do. But more than that now, because you have been permanently banned from this forum you are creating other accounts, not telling people who you really are, and continuing to selfishly take their free time. That's deceitful, underhanded and shows absolutely no respect for those people. If that is what this game is now making you do, stop playing the game and move on with your life. All you do is take take take but add nothing. Selfishly abusing people's good will and doing it deceitfully is a new low for you. So when you state: No, you won't. This account will of course be banned, but if you have a shred of decency and respect left for the people of this community, please don't. I ask on their behalf - please - move on.
  35. 6 points
    I mean, Liverpool are on course for their second Champions League final in a row IRL, and last season's squad was a fair bit weaker than the current one. Hardly an amazing outlier for them to repeat that performance after further improvements to their squad, especially not in a game where abilities are entirely on paper, reputation is dynamic and the high press really works. If you cannot see that expressing surprise that Van Dijk, Mane and Salah are giving your Roma team problems and framing that as them being "overpowered" might sound a bit amusing to people that have had to endure Liverpool fans crowing about how amazing their team is all season, then I really cannot help you.
  36. 5 points
    Alright, got the save back - I have to go back a season but the save is officially rebooted!
  37. 5 points
    I was reading the excellent book Thirty-One Nil, and this quote by Edson Taveres, the former Haiti National Team coach caught my eye: "I have never seen a country with so many talents like here. Players of 14 years old here, if you put them in Manchester United and Barcelona, they would be a great player. The problem is to be a great player you need to have good food, a good environment, good training, good doctors. So here there is nothing." It got me thinking that Taveres might well have a point. Talent can be found everywhere, but without the infrastructure in place to nurture it, that talent will never be realised. I began to think about it in FM terms. In FM, there is certain infrastructure that you can change. Through building up a club in a nation, you can improve the training facilities, the youth facilities, the level of junior coaching, and the reputation of football in the country (all things that have an impact on the quality of youth player coming through your club). However, certain things are hardcoded, and thus cannot be changed throughout a game. These include: Nation Youth Level Game Importance How Developed the Country is (Developed, Developing or a Third World State) The Economic Factor FA Economic Power I wondered how these hardcoded elements played into the level of quality that a youth intake in a certain country would see. Just how important are each of these factors in determining the quality of players that come through a nation? I decided to run a little experiment to put it to the test. I've got an affinity to San Marino, so I decided to run the tests in the Sammarinese League structure made by the excellent @claassen. This also meant that the players would be coming from a country with a small population, so we'd also be able to check whether population was a major hindrance on the quality of player coming through. Just like in any science lesson, we needed a 'control' set to be able to compare our results to. To set up the control, here's what I did: All 15 clubs in the country were given a reputation of 2000/10000 Every club was given 10 for Training and Youth Facilities, Youth Recruitment, Junior Coaching, and Corporate Facilities San Marino's Nation Youth Rating was set to 80/200 San Marino was listed as a Third World State They were given a 1/20 for Economic Factor and FA Financial Power I took control of all 15 clubs, and decided to run 50 simulations of youth intake day. 15 clubs * 16 players * 50 simulations = 12,000 players per test. Is this enough to draw any foolproof conclusions? Absolutely not. However, it should be enough to showcase any obvious trends. In the end, I tested 5 different scenarios. They were: The control test Bumped the Economic Factor and the FA Financial Power up to 20/20 Set San Marino to be a 'Developed State' Set the Youth Rating to 163/200 - as this is the highest youth rating in the database (Brazil) it made sense to choose this, rather than a 200/200 Set the Game Importance to 'Very Important'. Everything else in each test remained the same as the control test - it was important to only change the variables that we were testing for so we could prove a correlation. Each scenario was ran for 50 simulations, meaning 12,000 players in each test. I decided to track how many times a player with a PA over 120 was generated, as 120 is - to me, at least - the very baseline for a player to become a full international for a decent country. As an example of what I was tracking, here's a barchart for the control test's findings: Barcharts are nice, but to show how each scenario performed in relation to each other, I made this graph instead: And, wow! I knew that Youth Rating would have a major impact on the PA of players coming through, but I didn't expect it to be so conclusively the most important hardcoded factor. In all the tests, we had a similar number of 120-129 PA players, but every single scenario in which the Youth Rating was 80 failed to produce a single player with a PA of 170+ (which we could consider a 'star' player) - except for one solitary player when the Game Importance was set to 'Very Important'. However, looking at the general trend of the Very Important Game Importance, there is no real discernible difference to the other scenarios, and so we can likely chalk this up to a fluke occurrence. What does this all mean? Well, I'm not going to say anything has been decisively proven, because there are a myriad of factors that go into the quality of player produced by a nation. Instead, I think that it's safe to say that, out of all the hardcoded factors, the Nation Youth Rating is the major factor when it comes to determining the quality of player that is produced by a nation. Note - this is not the same as saying Nation Youth Rating is the most important factor entirely! Edson Taveres' argument makes sense - without the infrastructure to develop the players, their quality is irrelevant. Things such as Training and Youth Facilities, Junior Coaching, Youth Recruitment, and Club and Nation Reputation will have a huge impact on the quality of player coming through your club. However... A very popular type of save over on the FM Career Updates forum has been a 'Youth Only' challenge, in which the player picks a smaller, more obscure nation, and tries to win the Champions League and have international success with players produced purely through your academy. San Marino and Gibraltar are two of the more popular nations to try this challenge in, but are (unsurprisingly) extremely difficult. I wanted to know of some smaller nations that somebody could try this challenge with, but a nation that had the potential to lend itself to great success. Now that we know that Nation Youth Rating is really the only factor likely to make a monumental difference, what would be a good country to choose and try to carry out a 'road to glory' style save with? Let's take a look continent by continent, starting with the only two continents to ever produce a World Cup Winner.... Europe: San Marino and Gibraltar are two of the more popular destinations, but with the two lowest Youth Ratings in the continent are only recommended for the extremely hardcore! Turkey are surprisingly high on the list, with a Youth Rating at 124/200 - ahead of Holland and England! Serbia have a Youth Rating of 100, and have a history of producing some very talented players. Croatia are just behind at 98 - maybe you want to see if you can go one better than they did in 2018? To be honest, there aren't many European nations who aren't suited to this kind of save. Every country would have the potential to make a splash on the international scene if managed correctly - even San Marino, as demonstrated here by @Makoto Nakamura: South America: Venezuela has to be the choice here. The only South American nation to never qualify for a World Cup, it's a country in turmoil right now. They could really do with a successful football team to unite the country and find something to celebrate. North America: Honduras, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Guatemala, Trinidad and Tobago, Canada and Cuba are the nations with the highest potential behind the 'big two' of America and Mexico. However, there's talent in El Salvador and Haiti, two countries that are maybe slightly less developed away from football. Oceania: Almost certainly the weakest continent in football, anybody who could take an Oceanian team to international glory would go down in history. New Zealand are the strongest team in the continent, but the Solomon Islands and Tahiti aren't too bad, either. Africa: When Taveres spoke about the talent not having the infrastructure to develop, he almost certainly could have had Africa in mind. Egypt, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Algeria and DR Congo all have a Youth Rating of over 100. Sudan are probably the most surprising country high on the list, with a Youth Rating of 74. If anybody was interested in taking an African team to international glory, there's an absolute plethora of choices. You just need to sort out the infrastructure Asia: Not a country known for prominence in football, there's nonetheless a lot of talent here. Japan and South Korea unsurprisingly lead the way, but what is surprising is that Jordan, Iraq and Iran are all only just behind them. India and Bahrain are also high up, and who could resist the chance to take Syria to World Cup glory? The point of this post was first to share my findings from the 'experiment', but also to give an indication of which nations could become real international forces in FM with some development (or an excellent place to scout for players...). If anybody is interested in seeing the full list of every country on FM with their hardcoded features (including Youth Rating), I've included the spreadsheet I created as a file on this post. I'd seriously recommend a save where you try and take one of the countries on the list to international glory - it's a lot of fun! And if you are tempted by such a save, it's worth checking out the FM Career Updates forum, where people often try similar saves. Copy of FM Youth Ratings(2415).xlsx
  38. 5 points
    Newest update ready to download through FMSCOUT.COM! https://www.fmscout.com/a-evofm2019skin.html
  39. 5 points
    The problem lies in the fact that FM is a game. Players will figure out the stresses and weaknesses of such a system, and eventually it becomes Poster X's guide to 200CA players. Even that aside, while we don't know an individuals true potential and have to hazard a guess at best, the reality is potential is limited. Whether that's your ability to lift weight, how fast you can run 100m or how well you can play football. There are limits. The current PA system is representative of that fact.
  40. 5 points
    OK, I've provided details of the (to me) most frustrating part of the ME, poor defensive heading. Link to that is here should anyone want to read it: Or watch this video of 5 such instances in my last match played, plus a LW►RW►LW►RW, ping-pong, smash it in from 25yds type of goal that we have all become accustomed to seeing this year.
  41. 5 points
    I miss the lack of squad registration rules i.e the need for home grown players etc. I can understand if maybe they could be optional for people who don't want to deal with them but to me it removes a level of realism in the touch version
  42. 5 points
  43. 5 points
    The 'Move into channels' player instructions needs a serious overhaul for FM20. Not only is it locked in to far too many striker roles, it is way too pronounced in its effect on player movement. It is supposed to make players move into the spaces between centre backs and full backs; but all too often the striker moves outside the full back. In a lone striker system, this often sees him out by the sodding corner flag with nobody in the box. As play develops and a CM picks up the ball, the only real option they have is to shoot from distance. I'd say this at least somewhat contributes to the huge numbers of goals generated from long range and by CMs. It may also account for the fact that strikers tend to struggle to hit the numbers achieved by wide attackers and their CM team mates.
  44. 5 points
    I don't think you are getting his point and both of you seem to be chopping down the same tree but not seeing each other do it. Both of you agree that there is something fundamentally wrong with the AI manager's choices. And that's the basic issue with the game. I can seen both of you agreeing. Now what @herne79 is saying is also true, the AI hasn't learnt more sophisticated options, which is my point too. The AI is still too simplistic with how it sets its presets up and more can be done especially with sides like City and the big clubs. My contention is that its too easy for these top clubs to go into a shell when human managers become too successful, which is so funny cos years ago, it would still commit ritual suicide by going gungho. The point both of you are making is like looking at the same coin but from different sides. As a human manager I can play a direct counter attacking style of football on ANY mentality. The AI on the other hand has a playbook that is too simple, too one dimensional. AI vs AI matches can sometimes be very predictable, thats because their playbook is simple. The way I see it, its like we just got an engine thats evolving. In previous seasons there was no defensive side, only an attacking side. So any attacking kind of football looked good. Today we find that there is now a bigger challenge to get past defensive sides, some require more imaginative setups and the AI is slowly getting there. Hopefully in FM20 they get the balance right
  45. 5 points
    And in FM19, AI teams just crowd the centre of the pitch. Is that really better defending? You might want to call it that but I don't think so, it's just the tactics that AI teams have been given, or the change in formations they employ. That's not really active defending, just sticking extra players through the middle. It's just papering over the cracks. So the throughballs don't work as well in FM19 but the defending in general is hardly any better. There are other issues with defending instead, such as aimlessly heading the ball back to the opposition which was rarely an occurrence in FM17, or defenders just standing there, letting the ball drop for a striker to pick up. Watch the defending at corners and free kicks and try and tell me that defending is better in FM19. And from an attacking point of view, FM17 was so much better. Forget the throughballs. If you got the ball out wide, they would actually follow your instructions re crosses. If you wanted them to whip them in, they would; if you asked them to beat the man and cross from the byline, they would at least try to. What they wouldn't do is, rather than cross when given the opportunity, wait until a defender got back so that they could smash it into their legs. What they wouldn't do is ignore instructions to cross low and instead float them in (if they'd stopped playing 'Smash your legs off'). What they wouldn't do is send in a long, banana cross in search of the winger on the other side, as if the striker(s) didn't even exist. That's just the crossing issue. Do I really need to get into the ineptness of strikers to rarely do anything but hit a shot straight at a GK when one on one or just a few yards out, yet give your midfielder the ball outside the box and he can curl one in from 30yds+ ? @Rashidi I respect your work, I really do. Not just all the articles on here. I must have spent many hours watching your vids and I especially enjoyed the Torino Diaries and your love of Benassi but we are going to have to disagree on this one. As you might expect, there are far more people IRL who enjoy watching the likes of Barcelona play than they do Burnley and the same applies to FM. Majority of people want to watch fantastic, free flowing attacking football, not hoof-ping-pong-smashyerlegs bananaball.
  46. 5 points
    Picked the game up recently on the cheap. >_> Took me a while to get a save running, but I'm doing a Manchester United save with my 4-4-2, balanced, no instructions from 2018. I like the tutorial, however, if you disable the initial transfer window for more realism, the transfers tutorial bugs out and just puts up a blank screen. It registers you as having completed the induction though, but still, a bit of an oversight. Graphically, can something be done for the clay-monster that is our manager avatar? They look so freaking scary, with those alien length arms... Eww. I'd like to see build options for the body type, you could put a guy in at 5'11, 90kg and he would look a bit like a smaller version of fat sam. You could be 90kg and muscular for example... I basically cheat on my weight since it makes me look like a fat lad taking advantage of the McDonalds sponsorship. Anyway, I went through six matches so far and have finished with a 6 win record. Some observations on the match engine: 1. Long shots Seem to be a common theme. It was a rarity for me to see long shot goals in 2018 but in 2019 it happened almost every game. Mostly in my favour though, so I shouldn't complain, but it isn't realistic imo. 2. Transitions are still too slow I complained about this in 2018, sometimes players recover the ball in the defensive zone, but it takes until we get to the halfway line before players transition quicker into an attacking mood. This has caused some very odd behaviour, where if your CM picks it up outside the box and doesn't counter attack, then the opposition retreat fully and your midfield pass it about taking all the time in the world instead of getting on with moving forward. I know restraint is useful, but this is taking the mick. (Remember, I go more or less without instructions, so this is 'neutral' style of play, but it comes across as super-defensive/cautious.) 3. Long balls. Conveniently, if a defender gets this recovery he is more likely to launch it long, even where there is no pressure. Now, I benefit from this since it often ends up as a long ball over the top for my player to run onto, But it's weird because I feel the behaviour should be the other way round. The defender should be seeking out the more creative midfield players and the midfield players should be driving forward or launching it long. It is almost as if, the lower the vision the more likely they are to unlock a defence (by accident) with a howizer of a ball played long... It's odd. 4. Players sit inside and ignore width sometimes. Same issue on 2018 imo; in the attacking third, everyone goes narrow. I remember one of the staff saying it was a 'feature' not a bug, that wingers et al would push in on the final third. Fine, but now it seems it isn't just them it is almost the entire front line scrunching into a line along the back four. My deep lying forward seldom drops back as much as he should be doing, and I'm not seeing many through balls or movement in that area. When my full backs push up, bizarrely they're tucking in and getting into the box to join the 'line', it's not right. In fm2018 they would take up advanced passing positions out wide, and sometimes drive into the box, but at the moment in 2019 the balance isn't right, they're a bit too far forward and neglecting the pass. It's weird. Additionally, I still see lots of incidents where a WM will ignore the overlap from a FB, unmarked with yards of space, in order to take a pot shot into a wall of bodies. I saw this happen all the time with WM/S and FB/A on FM2018 (Mata in that role) and I'm still seeing it in 2019. Mata's vision and decisions are exceptional, I'm not entirely sure why he feels the need to pot shot from out of the box into a sea of bodies when a free overlap occurs that has no defender able to track or block him... 5. Crossing is... absurd. The deep cross from say, a bit diagonally from the edge of the penalty area? That seems to be the code hotspot this time. I have repeatedly seen crosses from that specific area, of varying types but often a curler that sweeps through a few bodies to bit hit first time on the volley for a goal. It is a repetitive pattern and happens both in my favour and against me. It looks awful, particularly animation wise as it seems coded to trigger regardless of the player's body shape and movement. So I've seen some pinpoint backwards crosses at times too. 6. Defensive teams are maybe a bit too defensive. I get that this is modern football, but I do think that perhaps the AI is a bit too defensive at times. It's weird seeing something like 8 players back in the box defending from kick off until the final five minutes. I wouldn't mind them being a bit more adventurous, if anything I think it might make the game a bit more fun and bit more challenging. I think you can brute force defensive set ups with time and patience, but it isn't really that exciting or fun to play against. (I speak more from a game perspective than a simulation perspective I guess.) 7. Physics for the ball is not right at times. Sometimes a shot 'hangs' and you can see the keeper do some somersaults before he gets into position to save it. It looks... gamey. I'd like this animation to be revisited and made more fluid so that it matches up. Those are what I've seen so far. I'm half and half as to whether it is an improvement or not on 2018's version. My main assessment of the match engine, from what I watch is that it is just odd. Things feel wrong and out of place with it. I'll see how it goes as my season progresses though.
  47. 5 points
    I like this detail very much.
  48. 5 points
    I am virtually always playing on Defensive mentality. When protecting a result, it goes down a notch to very defensive, when in need of goals I can escalate all the way up to very attacking if necessary. But that doesn't mean its actually ''defensive football''. The defensive mentalities do a number of things that I like: in posession, the ball is handled with care. Players take their time, stay closer together, and they stick closer to their defensive positions, maintaining tactical discipline. Great! When out of posession, the defensive shape is more congested, they won't press and run around like headless chickens, and there is a natural tendency to drop back and protect the goal. Splendid. The Attacking mentalities, in my view, very much represent the high-energy style I see every week on BBC in the Premier League: many forward runs, vertical passes, high tempo, creative freedom, and when out possession, players are frenetically running back and forth. You can create a more hybrid style through altering the TI's, or exaggerate it even - like going very high tempo on attack mentality. If youre looking for actual defensive football, I tend to achieve that more through the actual player roles and duties. Essentially, those determine the team's movements and organization on the pitch. If you want to keep many player behind the ball and hold a defensive shape for 90 minutes, you need to tell them through the player duties and roles. I could select a Defensive mentality, and then have 4 attack duties and 4 support duties and 2 CB's on Defend. That will likely see your team dominate possession, have 4 players close to the opponents' box, and the entire team involved in the attacks. So in my book, thats very attacking football - if somewhat dull, sterile and slow. I have had quite some success having 6 or even 7 Defend duties on a Defensive team mentality. What the team ends up doing is recycling possession deep in its own half, luring opponents forward, and then knock that ball into space behind them for your striker to run into. Or cross from deep for that attacking winger creeping into striker position. Its a different ball game that requires patience. One thing I'd recommend when playing with 6 or more Defend duties on a very low team mentality is to rattle up the pressing intensity. Defend-duty players are instructed to sit off longer, coupled with the low Team mentality and deep defensive shape can cause your team to be locked under pressure in its own area. Increasing the pressing allows you to push back a bit more, keeping opponents away from the danger zones - and if youre in such a compact shape, you can safely allow your players to step out and close down the ball. And of course tight-mark and kick the living **** out of them.
  49. 5 points
    I've watched a ton of Atleti matches since Simeone became manager, and while there are general principles such as narrow/vertically compressed defending and quick, often direct movement in possession, the actual match day instructions tend to be quite specific to the opponent. There are certain players, Koke, Saul and to a degree Partey who are positioned to either counter specific opponents or exploit weaknesses. Another really critical aspect would be the use of the opposition instructions as this is something that Simeone would spend countless hours on if FM and reality were the same. Getting the traps right is intricate. I think that this something that Experienced Defender is alluding to. mp_87 is certainly correct when he says that only a certain personality will succeed under Simeone, and I will also assert that he is quick to part ways with a player if he doesn't see a full commitment. Lastly, while Atleti line up in 4-4-2 the vast majority of the time, Simeone is willing to change it up to a 4-5-1/4-3-3 if he thinks that there's a need. A few years back in a cup match against a lower division side they played what was very close to a narrow 4-3-3 and pressed and trapped relatively high up the pitch.
  50. 5 points
    I am truly shocked that Liverpool is a good team in Football Manager and that De Ligt improves their back line...
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