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About Uncle_Sam

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    Houston Dynamo, USA

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  1. That's actually pretty hilarious. If nothing else I bet it would work as a great tactic for grinding out a result when the AI starts throwing guys forward at the end of a match.
  2. So I'm now about to begin the 2019 season and kick this into high gear. I used the offseason to jettison a lot of the dead weight. I also brought in more of "my kind" of players who I think I can develop in the tactic. I didn't have a huge transfer budget, only about $13m. So I really went for 18-23 year old guys who I can develop. Most of them were relatively cheap. This is what the team looks like in the preseason: My most expensive purchases were Bruno Tabata (Attacking Midfielder) and Alison (Defensive Midfielder) Obviously Real Madrid isn't going to come knocking on our door any time soon but they are an upgrade to our overall squad. All of the other guys are young and developing. As for the tactic itself, I've decided to really start simple and build from there. The only team instructions I have is to Roam From Position and Be More Expressive. The Brazilian style of play, generally speaking, is to build from the back. So I had previously set Play Out of Defense, Work Ball Into Box, and Shorter Passing. I may put all of those back, but I wanted the players to be free to be creative. The reality is that the passing will generally be short anyway due to the narrow-ness of the formation. I know that I'm probably not going to get away with a formation that mirrors itself on each side, although when I coached it that was really our default strategy only adjusting it based on the typ of players I had. In my experience in FM the roles need to allow for more interplay between strata. Generally, it's not a great idea to have two players side-by-side with the same duty-role (except maybe the center backs), but I feel if there is one formation where it can work it would be this one.
  3. Mine has to do with how the front 3 would mark and press the opponents' back line. In real life I coach my striker to be the first defender when one of the center backs has the ball, while the outside forwards mark the options to the left and right. In this picture below, the DCR has the ball so the center striker presses. The AML marks the right fullback while the AMR marks the left center back. As it is in game, I have been unable to get the players to function like this. I don't know how to tell them to make it possible, but I'd like to be able to.
  4. Quick Update: we won the Copa do Brasil after two 1-0 wins over Palmeiras. The matches weren't particularly helpful for this project due to the formation that they employed. This is what they came at me with: I mean... come on. Given how aggressive they were obviously going to be I set both of my fullbacks to Fullback-Defend, with low closing down and tight marking, specifically marking the striker on their side. This is the only method I've found to combat the 3 center striker tactic. It worked, in both legs they could only muster 4 shots in each leg. But, it's hard to use the data for creating this tactic. Good news is I got like $16.5M for winning the cup and I'm automatically qualified now for the Copa Libertadores, which was not going to happen through league play. Hopefully that extra money and the prospect of continental competition will help me lure some players in during the offseason.
  5. So I was very excited to get a message today from someone who I would call one of my FM tactical theft victims, Cleon. Probably the best to show how Cleon thinks on a whole different level than me in FM tactics is in visual form: You guys have no idea how accurate that image is. Anyway, when I first started using the 4-2-2-2 in FM (my goodness, it's probably been 10-12 years ago, How old are we?), Cleon was a guy who I bounced a lot of stuff off of. Well, ok usually what would happen is that he would help me fix what was going wrong. In fact, my memory is a bit hazy but I believe that my closing down solution for the midfield posted in this thread was something that he gave me way back when. Anyway, I admittedly have a tab open in my browser to his blog series on the 4-4-2 Box Midfield for what I believe was FM 16. I have been referencing it, looking for parallels in his experience while developing the tactic and my own. So for anyone interested in this project you may want to read up on his series: Part 1 - https://teaandbusquets.com/art-of-the-brazilian-box-4-2-2-2 Part 2 - https://teaandbusquets.com/the-art-of-the-brazilian-box-part-two Part 3 - https://teaandbusquets.com/the-art-of-the-brazilian-box-part-three Final Chapter - https://teaandbusquets.com/the-art-of-the-brazilian-box-final-chapter A great read and even though I haven't used many of his adjustments it's still relevant reading as it helps give a wider perspective for someone using this formation in FM. You can never have too much data when trying to doing something like this. He did also mention that he's worked on a 4-2-2-2 in FM18 with 2 Segundo Volantes at DM, a Mezzala and a Carrilero at MC. No lie, I actually thought about eventually trying two Segundo Volantes. My theory was that if the SV's both were set to push forward it would "force" the MCs to fill the space out wider. I was going to wait until the squad was a little better before I gave it a go because I kind of have this locked-in philosophy of keeping 3 players on Defend/Cover duty at all times and was tentative about coming off of it until the quality of my squad was at least on par with the top half of my competition. As for the MCs, his concept also lines up with something I had planned (but his idea is better, of course). After I felt like I got this tactic to the point where I couldn't really expect to improve it anymore, I want to build a 4-2-2-2 designed simply to maximize success rather than fulfill an "inspiration" that would function something like this: You'd have one forward playing as a Target Man (11-Ronaldo) with a second forward playing underneath (probably as a deep lying forward to start). One of the MCs would be more attacking (10-Ronaldinho), getting forward and exploring the half spaces. The fullback on his side (6-R. Carlos) would be given support duty to allow the MC more space to roam. The other MC would be more of a supporting player, linking to the front (8-Kaka). I had planned on him being a Mezzala - Support, but the Carrilero makes MUCH more sense. The fullback on that side would be bombing forward, probably Wingback-Attack or even Complete Wingback-Attack. Anyway, that's just a very early concept of where I would start building a 4-2-2-2 if I weren't working on what I'm doing.
  6. I am considering playing with the roles. If I wasn't trying to manifest my inspiration for this thread (2006 World Cup), I would avoid having players side-by-side with the same role. I'd probably do something like this; DR - Wingback Attack DCR - Central Defender Cover DCL - Central Defender Cover DL - Wingback Support DMR - Anchor Man (or Defensive Midfielder...) Defend DML - Segundo Volanta Support MCR - Mezzala Support MCL - Mezzala Attack STCR - Deep Lying Forward Support STCL - Advanced Forward (or Target Man) Attack That would probably provide better balance but I really want to try and get it to work with two "#10s" like Ronaldinho and Kaka. I'm also kind of avoiding making any rash decisions. I did read an article about Harison a year or two ago. He was in Atlanta working as a teacher and youth coach IIRC.
  7. Here is what I have done with pretty good success so far. I set all four players on my back line to Defend duty, DR and DL are both set to the Fullback role. I then go to the Player Instructions for the Fullbacks and set them to Specifically Mark the outside strikers (DR marks the STCL, DL marks the STCR), and set them to Mark Tighter. My center backs are already on Mark Tighter. That seems to work pretty well for me. I'm yet to surrender a goal in the run of play against a Narrow 3 striker look, but obviously you don't see it a lot.
  8. Here is what I mean by the heat map not being entirely reliable for this tactic. Below are a couple of screenshots from the 2D view of a match against Palmeiras; Luan is the MCR, and he has the ball occupying the half space, while the MCL is in the half space on the other side. And above we see the DL Bryan with the ball, and the MCL has slid over with the two DMS holding the middle and the MCR is sitting wider. Below is a screenshot of a match against Santos: Here we again see the MCs sitting wider than the DMs. Obviously, there are other positional issues to nitpick, but some of those will probably be impossible overcome. The point is that although the heat map and average positions maker it appear that the MCs are receiving their mail in the middle of the pitch, in-match observation tells a bit of a different story. I feel like I'm going to need at least one full season of employing this tactic to fine tune it. I need to also have at least one offseason of bringing players and generally improving the squad. I feel like it is passing the test of getting results against superior competition, but now I kind of need to know how it will fair when we have a strong team. As kind of a side note, Brazilian clubs have a CRAP TON of players! Right now I have 34 players in the first team, 25 players in the reserves, 26 players in the U20s, and another 20 guys out on loan! That's 105 players. At least half of those guys are dead weight. I'm going to half a fire sale in the offseason, an I'm already looking for prospects to help improve the team.
  9. So far, those guys have been my best players. Neilton is even getting some sniffs by the national team coach. But most of the teams I'm playing against have guys of that quality at every position. Results-wise, the experiment has been going well: My first match in charge was the Copa do Brasil Semi Final First Leg against Santos. Before I arrived they were obviously on a run of bad form.Since I've won 4 of 6 with no losses, and advanced to the final of the Copa do Brasil. This will be a long-term project, as I want to see how the tactic functions when I'm employing at least the same quality of player as my opponent. But right now, I don't have that. As for how it plays, well not as I would have hoped. As you saw, the MCs are not getting as wide I would like according to the heat map. However, I will say that in-match during the highlights they do combine well with the front 2. They also seem to attack in the half spaces in the highlights so I'm trying not to judge everything based on the heat maps. I'm sure it's kind of like a yo-yo, they make a move out, then snap right back into position. When it comes to player instructions, they are naturally instructed to roam from position and move into channels, however I am going to start training my MC players with the "Moves Into Channels" player trait to see if that helps. I might try reducing their duty to Support just to see if that causes them to get wider, the issue there will be how far they are from the STs. The fullbacks do well getting forward, I have them on support duty right now but I rarely see them not getting forward. I'm also obviously training my fullbacks with always get forward. I also have no issues with the Segundo Volante. He's often right in the middle of the attack, helping to unbalance the defense, I did set the overall team mentality back to Standard so I could get more of a sample size and that does seem to help how the tactic flows.
  10. United starts with a reputation of 8750, so it can actually get better.
  11. Oh I agree there are ways to balance a tactic so that it will be more successful across a wider spread of the spectrum, but that doesn't mean that the game doesn't work that way.
  12. Well again, I can't say for sure that's still how the game works but I would also argue that it is a method of simulating real life that is fairly accurate. Teams changed how they played against Man City as they started to climb the league ladder, and now they are much more likely to take up extreme defensive tactics (as you are experiencing) then they were just 2-3 years ago. You've increased the gap that already existed between you and the other clubs, and so now my assertion is that they are going even more defensive.
  13. Well Herne or one of the other mods would probably be better to answer this question, but I know that the older versions of the game would every so often re-rank teams club reputations. I don't know how much you know about how the game works, but club reputations are determined by several factors; what division the club is in, results in league and continental competitions, etc etc etc. So every so often the game would reestablish club reputations. So if a club gets relegated, or has been losing games and dropped down the table, then their reputation would decline. If a club wins the league or goes the first half of the season without a loss, then their reputation would obviously rise. The AI would use these reputation rankings to decide how they would approach a match tactically. So if the reputations are relatively close, then the AI would take a balanced approach. However, if their reputation is far lower, they are going to set up more defensively. If that gap is extreme and they playing away, then they will set up very defensively. In the older versions this reranking would occur once around midseason and then at the end of the year, but I haven't read whether or not it still functions that way.
  14. It's tough to say why you haven't run into it before, every set of circumstances is different. But here, my diagnosis is that it was around the Everton game when the game reevaluated the club reputations and are now sitting back against you. It's also not altogether unrealistic. If a team suddenly emerged in the league with a new system or style of play that is dominating then all of the other clubs would begin to change their approach.
  15. Quick Update: My first 11 was knackered from the midweek game against Santos, so I played my second 11 at home against another Brazilian giant Flamengo. I went ahead and set the shape to highly structured (decided to go extreme so I could see if I had somewhere I needed to go) and the results were very encouraging. Fell behind but managed a 1-1 draw, outshot them 12-8 (5-3 on target) and the positioning was much better. I might set both fullbacks to attack duty just because I felt they needed to get more involved in the attack, but for playing the second team against an opponent who is superior to my first team I'd say progress is being made.