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Overmars

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    Toronto, Canada

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    Liverpool

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  1. If you like the 4-2-3-1 in FM20 then you should give a 4-4-2 a try. Things I have observed through lots of FM20 seasons and tactic testing: Two striker formations provide huge benefits within the game mechanics (resistance to individual player scoring slumps being a key benefit). Formations with four wide players are great at taking advantage of the match engine's tendency to push most of the action out wide. Playing wingers as ML/MR instead of AML/AMR provides similar offensive value and defends better. Wingers in any role end up being some of the leading tacklers on your team, especially when using pressing tactics. Three at the back is usually just as defensively solid as four at the back formations, but four at the back formations facilitate stronger attacking play and therefore deliver better results. Inverted wingbacks work extremely well, especially with conventional wingers ahead of them. A DLP in the DMC or MC spot is super-effective at organizing a team and is usually a better choice than an AP in the AMC spot. Having a strong corner and free kick taker provides huge amounts of assists, especially if playing tactics that generate lots of corners. Aggressive pressing is almost always the best option, especially in combination with a positive or attacking mentality.
  2. Halfback with a back three looks clunky to me. It feels like the worst of both worlds -- lack of fullbacks make defending wings difficult and the halfback doesn't deliver as much offense as other DM roles. I would rather use a DLP in that spot and save the halfback role for four at the back tactics. I like the roles @MBJ96 chose above. In real life, I would use wingbacks, but I have seen 3-1-4-2 work well in FM21. My only suggestion on top of what @MBJ96 provided is to consider the MEZ role in the middle. I think MEZ is ideal for 3 at the back scenarios, and you might get away with using two of them. I like to use a DLF(s) in the attack pair, but it isn't mandatory. I do recommend using a strike partnership, though, because I see more consistent results in FM when doing so.
  3. I saw that single DMC + single MC formation a lot in FM20, usually in the form of a 4-1-3-2 Wide formation. It worked well, but I find it breaks realism for me. I think most central midfielder pairings would spread out horizontally. Perhaps Leeds sometimes makes and exception in some sort of strange 3-3-3-1, but that comes with some obvious drawbacks regarding central inferiority. Similarly, three F9(s) roles in a tactic feels wrong. It might work, of course, but it breaks immersion for me. Someone in the team needs to be attacking the box, especially with four support duty midfielders/wingbacks behind them. Simple switches to make it feel more realistic: Give at least one of the wingbacks an attack duty Give at least one of the forwards an attack duty Split the central midfielders horizontally rather than vertically By the way, I did try that strange Leeds 3-3-3-1 formation in FM20 (with AML/AMC/AMR/ST instead of three ST and an MC). It failed miserably. We couldn't keep the ball, and teams repeatedly carved us open on counters -- again, a bit like real life Leeds.
  4. The deep version of 4-2-3-1 looks and feels more realistic to me. I also like the versatility of roles for DMs. The only things I don't like: Not having spots for natural CMs and seeing those red/orange squares on the tactics screen -- but these are both game features that don't have much impact on actual outcomes. My preference: DLP(d) on one side with a wingback and a SV on the other side with a FB or IWB. I never quite know what to do with the AMC, but that's true of every AMC formation in every version of FM.
  5. I think their real life tactic is ideal for the talent on the team. The only improvement I would make is finding a faster/bigger presence for the central forward role who could get on the end of crosses when other teams park the bus. Jota is pretty good at it, but he's not the CF/facilitator I would want when teaming up with Mane/Salah. He doesn't really pass at all. And I wouldn't want Firmino in game because his lack of speed would be glaring in the match engine.
  6. In that formation, I would look at using the MEZ role -- and maybe even using two of them. Having a DM and three central defenders behind those two central midfielders means you can and should be aggressive with them. Perhaps: DLP(s) + MEZ(s) + MEZ(a) with opposite support/attack duties for the wingbacks. I might even go CWB if I had a beast on the flank because I do find they make a big difference in how they get into the box themselves.
  7. The above suggestions are all good, though I don't think you'll have a true back three when attacking. The IWB will not line up alongside the central defenders. You will have a back two with a left sided DM ahead of them and no one sliding over to the right.
  8. Bad results can be caused by a lot of things unrelated to the tactic, especially at the beginning of seasons. You said your worst player was your IF(a), but that's such a vital role here that I think you are playing to your weaknesses rather than your strengths. That said, what are your team's strengths? Try and capitalize on your best players by giving them feature roles. Two CM(s) players feels a bit stale. You have your playmaker on the wing, which is fine, but then I would want someone getting forward from the middle to provide an outlet from the playmaker. Maybe that's putting one of the wingbacks on IWB(a), maybe it's a CM(a) or MEZ(a), or maybe it's ditching the wide playmaker altogether and giving that duty to one of your central midfielders. Consider using a libero. Three at the back can be pretty stale in FM, and a libero helps spice it up a little. I know people can win with Balanced mentality, but in the last few versions of FM, I think it's just plain easier to win with more aggressive mentalities and pressing.
  9. I prefer a DLP/BBM mix in a 4-4-2. I want someone to get into the box from the middle, and CM(s) just doesn't do it for me. I like pairing WB with IW and FB with W. IW and FB feels like a suboptimal mix on the flank. If you want some quick attacking play then use the Attacking mentality.
  10. Exactly. This is the tactics forum, and we're seeing everything but the tactics screen. Multiple posts, over a dozen screenshots, and still nothing concrete that we can discuss. I had a 3-3-3-1 (3 CD, 2 WB, 1DM, AML, AMR, AMC, ST) in FM20 which looked great in screenshots but played terribly. We couldn't help but concede goals (a bit like real life Leeds), but the real disappointment was that we never had the ball. We couldn't pass through the middle because we didn't have enough people there, and wing players in FM20 seemed hell-bent on giving up possession as quickly as possible via a cross or earning a throw-in. I would be curious to see if these spread formations worked better in FM21.
  11. On FM20, I found fullbacks were so inept defensively that it made sense just to punt on the position and play a 3 at the back formation without them. I would still get overloaded on the wings, but at least I had an extra man in the middle as compensation for it. I also noticed that wingers were able to tackle and intercept passes about as well as anyone, so I never felt particularly troubled relying on them in the lone wide positions.
  12. It used to be easier. I remember on FM15 I could re-loan every single player I loaned in. That exploit has been reduced significantly, though it is still too easy to get loans in in general. But if you don't like it, you can fix it easily by not loaning in the same player in successive seasons.
  13. Yes, you can win matches and leagues using a libero in a 3 at the back tactic. Personally, I think it's easier to overachieve using 4-2-3-1, 4-4-2, or 4-3-3 because I find them more flexible in attack and less prone to being overloaded on the flanks. Still, there are so many ways you can beat the AI with squad building that you don't need to have the perfect tactic to win titles.
  14. That's a good summary of it. The templates have improved over the years, but I think the biggest improvement can be made in scaling the mental attributes more dramatically. A 26 year old player is almost always a much smarter version of his 20 year old self. And especially with the leadership attribute, it's so rigid whereas in real life people becomes leaders as they gain experience.
  15. I agree about the adaptability point. Many new transfers start off as failures in the FM world because of that one attribute. I also think form is one of those things in FM that overwhelms a lot of objective analysis. I had a player score 12 goals in 6 matches then go the next 8 matches without a goal, playing in the same tactic with the same role. That's just the game. Whether or not it reflects real life is debatable. There isn't much you can do other than warn player for poor play or drop him for another player. Incidentally, this is also why I try to stick with 2-striker tactics. I find it safer to go into a match with two lead scoring options so that any goalless streaks, poor adaptability, inconsistency, or whatever doesn't crush the most important part of a tactic.
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