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About ajsr1982

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  1. Update: Well, I beat it. I beat it 5-1. In the playoff final. What did I do? Almost nothing. Played my 4-4-1-1 with a Structured shape and pushed much higher up. That's it. I'd offer some insight, but I don't even know why it worked. There you go.
  2. Of course, but the idea is to let them do that, defend deep and hit them when they over-commit. I'm perfectly willing to accept that fighting fire with fire is the only way to beat the 4-3-3, but I'd like to come up with a (realistic) system that stifles it before going on to play on its (obvious) weaknesses. It's not quite at game-breaking levels for me yet, but after the above game, teams have gone on to play the same system against me and I've lost 0-2 and 0-1 after going ten unbeaten. Morale is now shot and my promotion chances are slipping away. Not the first season derailed by coming up against this formation, to the point that I'm seriously considering a return to FM17 unless I can find something (realistic) that at least gives me a fighting chance.
  3. Iran definitely used 'Get Stuck In'.
  4. Time for an update on this. First, some good news. After taking on board the initial comments, I decided I generally needed to be a bit braver. Thus, I changed my system to: GK/D DFB/D CD/D CD/D FB/A W/A CM/D BWM/S IW/A AP/A AF/A That's Standard/Flexible. I'll change up the full backs depending on what I'm up against. Same with d-line. I've added 'Play out of Defence' too, which helps a more measured build-up. So, all good. The result was a Div. 2 title, and now I find myself in the playoff spots half way through my first season in Div. 1 after a sketchy start. I'm a couple of points off the promotion slots and I'm flying, unbeaten in ten. I hadn't actually faced the 4-3-3 very often, hence the lack of update on this. But here it comes. I'd set up and trained a system to deal with the 4-3-3, so time to put it into use. It's not a huge move away from the above, I think. GK/D FB/A CD/D CD/D FB/D DM/D W/A CM/S BWM/S IW/A DF/S A move to Standard/Structured, with the following TIs: - Much Deeper D-Line; Exploit Left/Right Flanks/Be More Disciplined/Pass Into Space. Note, I've changed the FBs around because their pacy AF was on their right. The LCF was a slower target man, allowing me to have my RB as the out ball. Now, it's not all bad news. I had my chances, and instead of the 90/10 balance of play I was seeing before, it's now maybe 65/35 or even 60/40. But... There is plenty of this... CB gets on the ball and simply belts it forward. It looks like I have the situation in hand. You can see my 4141 set up there. The attacking RB is in a nice position, helping out. The LB is a bit too wide for my liking, but still. I'm nice and deep. All that needs to happen is the LCB takes a few steps backwards and heads the ball clear. Alas, no. It looks like maybe my LCB has his eye on the central CF, which means the RCF has a free run, and of course he scores to make it 3-0. Any thoughts here? This isn't the only instance of this type of situation happening, and it's really frustrating. I went into this game on the following run: P10, W7, D3, L0, F15, A4. In fact, I'd conceded 1 in the last 6, and that because I'd played too high from the start when I shouldn't have. Morale is good, my players are in good form and injury free. And then a 3-0 hiding from a team below me in the table.
  5. Well, I guess we can call this a failure. Opposition switched to a 4-2-4, which caught me on the hop, but they only played it for about 2.5 minutes (yes, that's two-and-a-half, not twenty five), in which time they scored. I'm playing a Standard Flexible 4-4-1-1 here, as follows: GK/D DFB/D CD/D CD/D FB/A W/A CM/D BWM/S IW/S AP/A AF/A The following screen shots hopefully show the problem I face. Ball gets switched, and my ML doesn't get close enough to put pressure on the ball. The LB seems more pre-occupied with the CF than the AMR. LB has shifted over. Good, even if he's a yard or two higher than I'd like. Ball is played down the line. My LB has just decided he won't do anything to prevent the cross. I'm not sure why. Trouble is brewing in the middle with a 3v3. But given my system, how can I hope for better? The free cross is duly delivered. Their AML is 6' tall and matches the aerial prowess of my RB. It's 50-50, and he wins the header. The AML has the presence of mind to nod the ball down to the CF, who duly converts after making a yard of space. 1-0, they revert to their 4-1-2-3. I can't respond. Game over. EDIT: I guess I can't see what else I can do here. My LB could do better, sure, but his pace and acceleration match the AMR's, so it's not like he's just been out-paced. But my three other defenders are in decent positions as the ball comes in. As the goal is scored, I have eight players back in my own box, so it's not like I'm being completely outnumbered.
  6. Okay, my default 4-1-4-1 looks like this: GK/D DFB/D CD/D CD/D FB/D DM/D W/A BWM/S CM/S WM/S DLF/S Now, that's not set in stone in terms of duties, but it's how I'd line up against a 4-3-3. Standard/Flexible is my starting point, but I'll read the analyst reports and start to adjust. Only TI I use is 'Stick to Positions' to try to keep my shape against the onslaught. Where is their playmaker? Shuffle things around in midfield, and I'll generally tell someone to get tight to their playmaker and stick the boot in on him. Who gets the assists? Can I rough him up? Is he one-footed? Is he quick? What about their forwards? Do I need to drop off or get tight? Do they have an advanced midfielder? No? Then I might change the DM to a Support duty to get him to engage their midfield more. Are both their full backs pushing on? Can I get in behind them? Do I really need that CM/S or can I be more adventurous with an attack duty or a BBM? Depends on the configuration of their midfield. Likewise, I might choose an IW or a W on the left if I think it warrants it and depending on what their FBs are doing. How am I trying to attack? Well, I'm trying to release my winger on the right and get some of my midfielders to make the box. I always play a quick forward as well in these game to try to take advantage of a hoofed ball over the top. The issue I have is one of control, I think. I can't get the necessary control in the game to release the ball to an outlet. The real killer is the one where a midfield player is dispossessed - which will happen when they play two Mezzalas and a BWM. As my team transitions and starts to move up the pitch and get wider, the ball is dropped over the top for one of three to run on to. I mean, that's not even difficult. I could push my wide men up to make a 4-1-2-3 (and have done), but I find all this tends to do is give their FBs a free run. At best, I'm looking at reducing it to a shootout and what I'm really looking to do here is stifle and then hurt them after they over-commit. I'm finding that hard because they effectively attack with seven players. To stop them, my thinking is that I probably need eight players back before I move into an attacking transition. Thanks for the advice, folks. I understand it was generic, but I have taken some things away from this to try, I think, and writing out some of the issues has helped too. I didn't really want to put my system up because it's been found to be so poor at doing the job that I felt I was ready to try something completely different to face the 4-3-3. In summary: I think I need to be a bit braver, which means an attack duty for a FB, possibly with a Structured mentality to emphasise those attack duties. My FBs and wide players have good pace and acceleration (12-16), so they should be able to get in behind. I think I might also want to bypass the midfield where possible, because it's leading to too many turnovers which are really hurting me. By contrast, being more aggressive with marking and closing down in midfield might gain me the control I'm so sorely lacking. I also wonder about the wisdom of having my wide players man mark their WBs. The theory being that they're back when they need to be back, and they can hang out and look to get in behind if the WB doesn't push on. Plenty of food for thought. Thank you. I'll report back on its success/failure.
  7. I'm playing as Lyn in the Norwegian third tier. I guess this means you can fill in a few gaps; namely that there isn't a huge gap in the standard of opponents - I'm in the middle of the pack in terms of the standard of my squad. My defenders are fairly strong, fairly quick, and one of my CBs is my best player. I have a good, workmanlike midfield, and my wide/forward players are young, so they're developing. System-wise, I bounce between a 4-4-1-1 and a 4-1-4-1, depending on what the opposition is doing. The idea is to shut the opposition down in the middle of the park (stifle the supply, if you will) and grab a goal. It's basic, but for the most part, it works okay (too many draws, but my forwards are a work in progress). The only times I conceded more than one goal in the league are the aforementioned four matches. I'll adjust the mentality of my FBs and wide players depending on what the opposition does, but that's generally switching up between defend and support duties. The issue, as I see it, is that the opposition mentality is so attacking and so heavily loaded up front, that my players can't cope with it in any single way. The ball over the top seems to be the main route to goal, where the 3v2 in the middle of my defence (my FBs don't get narrow enough) pays dividends despite the fact that my defence is among the quickest in the division. Switching to a three didn't seem to make much difference. I can mitigate this somewhat with a drop in mentality or dropping deeper, but that merely invites the same 3v2 from crosses from opposition WBs. But there must be a point at which they over-commit and I can capitalise, right? Well, wrong, it seems. They of course have a 2v1 at the back against my lone forward. My wide players are too deep from trying to help out the defence to provide support to the attack, and the high pressing 3v3 in midfield means my players can't play their way out (and their attempts to do so often result in dispossession and a ball over the top). As such, it's not uncommon to see me have fewer than five shots in the game, for the concession of more than twenty. It's literally attack v defence for most of the match, so I can't say I'm even encouraged by things almost working. If we work on the assumption that I can't get better players quickly, where next? It's 12 points a season that I'm just giving away; even six of those would make a huge difference to my season. The main frustration is that after a lot of hard work and effort, I'm getting to grips with devising a good defensive system, only to see it ripped apart by the 4-3-3.
  8. That's fair. I had no issue with that part. It's just... it's not easy. At least not for me, and I'd hoped that much was obvious.
  9. Nothing personal, but I wish people wouldn't say things like this when giving advice. I appreciate you taking the time to reply, but If it was this easy, I wouldn't have asked the question in the first place. I've tried what you say works so well, and it didn't work. I've tried playing three at the back. I've tried playing with a flat back five. I've tried playing with four defenders, and a DM, all with a defend duty. I even tried playing with 3CBs and a sweeper. I've tried pushing up - I get done over the top. Hell, I get done over the top regardless. I've tried dropping deeper - I get done by overloads from crosses into the box. Sorry, I know I come across as somewhat tetchy, and that's not my intention. But I didn't spot something that didn't work and decide to head straight to the help forum. I'm here because I've tried everything I can think of and I've not found anything that works; or indeed anything that comes close to working. I wish it was as simple as you make out, I really do. The reality is I've been playing this game for eight months now and this formation kills me almost every single time across a number of saves. There is only one thing I've found stops me falling to a 2+ goal defeat: Have significantly better players than the opposition.
  10. I tried this. I was 2-0 down after five minutes!
  11. A little bit of a vague one this, so apologies for that. The 4-3-3, and it's ridiculous cousin the 4-2-4 are giving me endless trouble. I'm aware of certain... issues when trying to stifle these formations, but is there anything I can realistically do, or is it better to just go in for the high-scoring shootout? In general, I'm actually defending well with a system that errs on the side of low-risk. In 23 games this season, I've conceded 23 goals. However, 12 of those 23 have been in four games against teams that use the 4-3-3 or 4-2-4. I'm happy with 11 in the remaining 19 games! Any advice is welcome.
  12. This worked so well on FM17. Play low block, look for the gaps, have a couple of quick players with attack duties attacking those gaps. Enjoy. The best equivalent I can come up with in FM18 is to surrender the midfield and play long balls up to a front three, but then it's just a shootout and it doesn't feel like I'm doing something realistic/skillful. I just end up penned in if I stick with one up front.
  13. I think there are perhaps a few crossed wires on (2). I can understand why you'd come to your conclusion on the OP's approach and I probably agree with you on balance. I was referring to my own approach however, which plays out quite differently. I also agree that it depends on how good you are in comparison to the opposition, and what your initial setup is, actually. I tend to play low-medium risk anyway with a solid, disciplined spine and if I'm inferior/closely matched to the opposition, then camping is a good option because I'm not going to have the majority of the play anyway. It's a more extreme version of what I'm doing already - I see it more as keeping the back door closed and funnelling everything through the front, where I can place obstacles. If I knew I was better than the opposition and I saw they just left a big gaping hole at the back, then I'm rubbing my hands together because I back my players to keep control and exploit. Actually this is only something I've adopted in FM18. In FM17, I was an advocate of the 4-1-4-1. Because it's low block already, if the opposition threw the kitchen sink at me, it didn't matter because I was set up to deal with it, and I generally did so. I might be imagining it, but I just can't get that to work the same way in FM18 (I believe the route to scoring has changed significantly between the two versions), and so I have to put belt and braces on it. I'd much prefer it if I didn't have to and I actually don't think I should. However, I see the opposition switch to 'Attacking 4-3-3' or 'Attacking 4-2-3-1' and I've learned that's as good as a goal if I don't react. I'd probably agree that doesn't work that often IRL. However, as I said before, it happens naturally as teams get pushed back. Liverpool aren't a defensive team, but they effectively played Contain for large parts of the game against City and indeed in the final against Madrid. Players are drilled to revert/default to that style of play if they can't get control of the ball. Where there is an obvious imbalance, then teams will look to actively reject possession and territory of course, and in your language, try to cause the other team to fail. I guess it works often enough that teams will keep trying it. Portugal and Greece have won Euro finals playing this way, and it is the way to play against Liverpool, unless you're Real Madrid.