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  1. Hmmm, where to start... On paper I wouldn't say that team looks particularly well balanced. 5 defend duties at the back holding position, and then lots of attack duties up front rushing forward. And then quite honestly I'm afraid I'm not surprised by anything you mention..... Six players in defensive positions will make you hard to breakdown, whilst the DM stepping into midfield/AP being a ball magnet/IF's both cutting inside will be operating in the same areas, and your AF will be often isolated with such a chasm from back to front. Also some of the instructions contradict. I'm not sure the Overlap instruction is needed in any case, but why then are both WB's set to defend? With the aforementioned above no wonder the team is very narrow and then struggling to create variety and chances. I'd also be surprised if you're managing to high press etc. when you have so many players selected in the defensive stratas. Maybe it's working for you, but not a shape that would come to my mind when trying to press high and hard. There's more, but I'd say those are the major points to rethink.
  2. Agree with most of what has been said above. I'll therefore come at it from a different angle..... From my experience it is always possible to play "Barcelona-type" football - technical players, short passing, even pushing higher up the pitch - but you've got to pay respect to who you're facing and the scenario. You're playing one of the best teams in the game, with two of the most dangerous and pacey forwards, and are away from home. You need to keep it tight and frustrate them, but that means different things to different people. Most would think of it as getting in behind the ball and dropping deep and trying to counter attack, but you can also do it by just keeping the ball and not letting them have a sniff. To do this I'd go with something like: SK(d) FB(s) - CD(d) - CD(d) - FB(s) CM(d) - CM(a) - CM(d) RMD(a) - F9(s) - IF(s) 4-3-3 that plays more like a 4-2-3-1. Mentality should be cautious, possibly balanced. To combat Mane and Salah, and it being one of the best teams in the game, I'd basically go with a 6/4 split. Six defensive players and the attacking play left to four. Two central midfielders on defend looks negative, but will just always be available to recycle the ball and keep possession plus it will mean a defensive midfielder on either side is close by to help out his fullback, and the flat midfield three will push them even wider. Further forward the F9/Messi drops deep and combines with the IF, whilst the Raumdeuter and CM (either Support with gets further forward, or Attack duty) surge past them. There isn't much width, but with a cautious style the Fullbacks should be able to shuffle forward and link play. With additional TI's and PI's this might lead to lots of sterile possession and a tight result - 1-0 or even a 0-0, but in real life we often see games pan out like this between the top teams where they're ultra cautious. In an FM game this is maybe not much fun, but you have to be able to adapt and sometimes be prepared to do it.
  3. I'd suggest tinkering in friendlies etc. try out the different width settings and see what works best to your tastes. It might have no impact, but just something that stood out to me. I think your team should be able to have options close by for the man on the ball, and as I said on paper it looks a pretty solid starting point to me. The Mezzala will be heading towards the winger, the F9 is dropping towards the midfield, the IWB is drifting infield, as is the IF, and I personally like the simple CM(s) role as it seems to always be available for a pass and gets up and down the pitch. If you wanted to vary the threat from the flanks, you could always instruct the IF to sit narrower and/or roam whilst on the other flank the Winger holds width and opens up space.
  4. Cheers Herne Yeah that's exactly it, I think a lot of the headaches are caused by striving for the perfect tactic. That's not the case IRL and shouldn't be in FM. You will always have weaknesses, especially when trying to emulate particular tactical styles, just try your best to minimise them. And as ever, slowing down - thinking - analysing - planning helps a hell of a lot. Not so easy for a lot of FM'ers I know but it helps so much!
  5. On paper that looks pretty well thought out, and a good starting point. I'd query a couple of things though. I think the Underlap Left TI is not needed, your IWB on that side will tuck in centrally anyway. Also you mention using your Left Winger to offer width and create space for the Mezzala, does the Narrow Width TI not contradict that aim?
  6. First of all, I think most people will say don't get too obsessed with the recommended roles and what the game sees as it's best - it's there as a guide based on the AI's interpretation of certain factors and in the grand scheme of things shouldn't be taken as gospel. With the right attributes players can fulfil whatever role you designate them. In this case, it will almost certainly not matter one jot if you have him on a defend duty, rather than stopper/cover. As for the specific question, most FM'ers would in this case I suspect just set up with two CB's on defend. Setting up a cover/stopper duo is certainly possible though and can work well, especially against a lone striker. I think there are guides on here/out there from FM guru's with examples of that. Personally, and something most would say is a big no-no (), when I play possession/high press football I have for years now used two stoppers. Defensively I am not thinking about what happens around our penalty area and whether they will get dragged out of position (which I've never seen as a real issue in any case), I aim for us to win the ball back up the pitch soon after it's been turned over, with aggressive defenders who stick close to their man, even when last line of defence, and will look to intercept as quickly as possible as the opposition plays the ball forward or at least disrupt play with a foul. Stopper role helps with this. Is it a (big) risk? Yes. Do I sometimes see goals, especially with lesser quality players, from balls over the top and a lack of judgement/concentration? Also yes. But all out high pressing football is a risky style of play and I accept the trade offs and that some days you will get it wrong. There are far more games where I have the AI teams completely camped in their half and unable to get out or advance the ball beyond the halfway line and it works perfectly. Really I'd just advise you to tinker and see what works best for your tastes and how you envisage your team playing.
  7. Firstly, be realistic and try to have some patience. I know that's easy for me to say, but you've just been promoted to the Premier League and establishing yourself in the league will take a bit of time. You will have some bad results and just staying up in the first season is an achievement. You don't say what the struggle is and where you think tactically it is going wrong. I am going to assume that your tactics aren't withstanding the leap in quality - what was a defensively solid tactic that nicked goals and was effective, you're now finding a) concedes more at PL level and b) that lack of goals is now magnified? Trying to play out of defence with shorter passing in a possession style will be a work in progress too and requires patience (and possibly a rethink if results are really bad). I'd say you're probably not at a point where you can play with two strikers and sacrifice the extra man for solidity, so let's focus on that 4-1-4-1... What I think most people would say is that it looks pretty toothless. There isn't really anyone who is going to consistently attack the penalty area and be there on the end of chances. The Inverted Winger role in my experience cuts inside and operates mainly in front of the oppositions defence, so he is going to be in the same areas as the DLF. My first suggestion would be to make that a Wide Midfielder (A) who surges forward from the right flank whilst the left flank is the supply line. I'd also probably make the RB behind him into a Wing Back (s).
  8. Yeah, sorry OP but on paper there are massive issues with that set up with some crazily contradictory and ill thought out roles/duties/instructions. I'm not surprised that you are struggling to hold onto a lead, and can picture the scenario that will happen. You are Arsenal, so initially most teams will sit back against you and you may take the lead in a game, but as soon as they're obliged to show a bit of impetus and look to attack, plus you mention you make changes which maybe invites pressure a bit more, your team looks so weak and exploitable defensively and really liable to concede goals.
  9. I've always found that you have to stick with a Simeone-inspired save. It takes time to get the approach right and for it to click. I echo what has been said, you really do need the right players, and quality ones at that, to carry it out at a really good standard. They have to be able to run all day (Stamina), want to run all day (Teamwork, Workrate), make the right runs and close down at the right times (Decisions, Positioning, Anticipation), need to be aggressive and get at the opposition (Aggression, Determination, also Strength and Acceleration help) and on top of that when they get the ball have the technical ability to carry out quick counters and transitions, or to play through teams when they face weaker opposition. Personally I think the challenge is to have different set ups tailored to the opposition, and what I think Atleti/Simeone have done over the years in real life - One is to stay compact and counter (the version I think most comes to mind when we talk about this subject), against weaker teams you want to be able to press higher up the pitch, and then there is the drop really deep version they have used over the years against the likes of Barca where it's almost a 4-4-2-0.
  10. I think if you saw the opposition had 3 centre backs and two midfielders ahead of it, first thought would be not to try and go through the centre of the park. But thinking about it, I would. I'd play a 4-4-2 that plays narrow through midfield and try to overload their central block of 5 vs. my 6 midfielders/attackers. Defensively it then also matches up pretty well to what they are doing. I'd want both my wide players looking to come inside and attack the centre of the pitch/half spaces (PPM's or considering playing them coming inside onto their stronger foot may also help here). One striker pulling into channels dragging defenders out. Whilst the other striker can drop off whilst others attack space ahead of him. Something like this for starters:
  11. For me, whatever tactical set up I am going to use, some players are out straightaway if they lack certain attributes - the main ones being work rate, ball control, and composure if I had to name the top three. However I also have no time for players with certain PPM's - Runs with ball often, Tries killer balls often, Shoots from distance. If a player has one of them I might attempt to get him to unlearn it, a combination of them and they have no future in my team. I think most FM'ers jaws would drop if they saw some of the players I would discard from a team
  12. Depends on the save, and what I'm trying to do, but most commonly how I play and what I prefer is an ultra-possession juego de posicion type approach where the principles never change but I will choose a line up based on what the opposition does in order to achieve superiority in certain areas. All three tactics slots will be filled, but beyond that I may have half a dozen (or more) tactics that play out in a certain formation: 4-2-3-1, 4-3-3, 3-4-3, 4-4-2, if I'm against a really weak team then I even have 3-3-4 and what plays basically as a 2-3-5 that are available. These/the roles then might be customised further on a game by game basis depending on which individuals I have selected in the team.
  13. I think it's a combination, as others have said you maybe aren't doing enough to adapt over time or to different opponents. That doesn't just mean to swap mentalities or decide e.g. "this game I'll attack, next game I'll defend" - for a simple example to give you, one match the potential weakness of the opposition might be on their right flank, the next game you play it might be on the oppositions left flank. Etc. etc. There is also the form/confidence factor - maybe on FM it is overblown slightly but we see often in real life "streaky" sides where they are flying and out of nowhere put a run of wins together but for other teams when they're struggling it's a herculean task to turn it around. Also the other day on the previous thread some of us were suggesting to stop chopping and changing so much, and I used examples of how in real life teams that import a whole squad-full of new players (eg. Fulham this season) very often struggle for identity and cohesion. The same is true on FM, you should notice "better football" and your team more easily and efficiently doing as you ask them over time the more games you play. However, after the last thread where you'd got a whole team of new players, I see again that for this current thread/season you have 8 new starting players. Cohesion and team gel etc. is going to have taken a massive whack..... Everyone plays how they see fit and what time allows them but I'm another who'd say you need to slow down and not rush through so many games and seasons, at least not for now, and try to analyse things a bit more. That's surely going to be a benefit tactically, for all the reasons mentioned so far, and also might help with squad building - for instance you mention you've signed Barbosa but now aren't sure he can play as the lone striker in your system. I'm afraid you have to ask the question...... Why didn't that thought occur before you rushed out and signed him? I agree with others also about the expectation factor. Of course everyone wants to push on and see linear progress, but in real life (and also in FM) the PL is so competitive and it fluctuates and there are probably 12-14 teams who start off a season with the number one objective of staying up, no matter what happened in the previous season. FGR must still be in your game a minnow team that has come a long way very quickly and, from a realism point of view, at this point staying up is an achievement that should be kept in mind.
  14. I'd echo Experienced Defender's thoughts tbh. You're Man Utd. You will have a lot of games where opponents are putting up the brick wall in front of their goal. Look at the screenshot you provided, where is the space for a through ball in behind to make use of a pacey player? If it was me up against a team like that, I'd firstly drop the mentality and accept being a bit more patient with the play. I also think against teams that are parking the bus you need players getting up in support into the area. I'm not sure you need an AP really, all the play is going to be in front of their defence anyway and anyone in that area will see plenty of the ball. I'd go with a CM(s) with get further forward or even a CM(a) who will surge into the box beyond the DLF. I'd also probably switch the Winger to a Raumdeuter, for more unpredictable movement and presence in the box. I'd also remain patient, that looks like your first season. Over time the team should gel better and this be reflected in their play.
  15. On attributes alone, you could do something with Rakitic. Obviously the physicals are pretty awful at the age he has got to, but he could act as an experienced head who can come on and shore up games in the latter stages. I personally wouldn't, purely because his personality is Balanced so offers nothing really from the mentoring aspect I'd want from an older head who'd have a bit-part role, and I almost always steer clear of any player with Shoots From Distance and/or Plays Killer Balls Often. However that's not to say he couldn't contribute for other people, his technical attributes do go well for the PPM's.
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