I agree that this year's ME is, to say the least, confusing to me. In previous iterations of the game I could make my team play the way I wanted it to - even if the tactic eventually proved to be ineffective, but it was my tactic and you could recognize it in the actual football that was being played by my team on the pitch. In FM20 I feel like there is a limited number of ways to win, and if you try to make your own way and not stick to those you'll find yourself being trashed match after match. It is quite frustrating.
I have never been a manager that sticks to the same tactic/playing style regardless of the team I'm managing. For example, in FM10 I succeeded through the Spanish league system using a very defensive tactic. It was a 5-3-2 that heavily relied on fullbacks and counter-attack because I had no quality players as to deploy a possession-based style. When I made my way to the top and got a good enough squad I gradually changed my tactics and ended up using a 4-4-2 diamond (technically a 4-1-2-1-2) that was pretty much attacking and creative.
Other example is FM15, where in the same career I started using a counter-attacking 4-2-3-1 that failed miserably and led to me being sacked by Tottenham. Then I moved to Torino and played a very strange 3-1-4-2 that proved to be effective, with high pressing and much protagonism for the wingers. I then moved on to Galatasaray and had a very bad first half of the season until I changed my tactics to a 4-4-1-1 where my target man was fixing the opposite centre-backs and thus freeing spaces for the wingers to shine. After that Tottenham hired me back and I switched again to a 4-2-3-1 but possession-based this time, with the CAM being the absolute axis of the build-up. This was my best tactic in this save - with Torino I had a decent season, a fantastic one and then a terrible one, and in Galatasaray I just stayed for one year where I got to win the league after an exciting comeback through the last months. In my second stint at Tottenham I managed to win the league and the Champions League.
Moving to FM18 I had a game with Deportivo de la Coruña and they had a pretty average team, but through studying the outcomes of my tactical tweaks I managed to build a pretty solid side that brought me close to European qualification positions in the table.
In FM19 I must admit that gegen-press was so overpowered that I had massive success with Extremadura first -saving them from relegation and then promoting to La Liga- and then with Schalke 04, where I won two or three Bundesligas back-to-back. Then with an update gegen-press got nerfed and I didn't really get it right afterwards.
Having said all of this, what I mean is that I have always found a way to a certain degree of success through hit and miss, but this year (well, it was the same in FM19 after the update where they kind of destroyed gegen-press!) it looks like I'm doomed to fail no matter what I do. I tend to think that my tactical knowledge has limits and that the game has gotten so complex that I'm no longer able to beat it. And then, looking at the matches (even in full match mode!) I don't really get to understand some of the things that my players do, which seem to be completely against what I want them to do.
Maybe it's just me...