I am in my third season now in the game. I started as Everton and I had 2 wonderful seasons with the Toffees. During my stint there, I won the FA Cup, Community Shield, Carabao Cup and the Europa League. After I won the Europa League, my reputation soared and ‘big’ clubs began to offer me interviews. I would love to stay at Everton, I love them, but we’re not as rich and reputable as the likes United or City. Even our star players see us as a stepping stone albeit finishing 2nd in the league. Hence, when AS Monaco came calling, I decided to leave and made the step up myself!
I have played FM since CM 4 and what a journey I have been through since then. I started off by using ‘plug and play’ tactics, but then I found this forum. The Tactics, Training & Strategies Discussion is my go to every time. I read countless of threads and guidelines then I started to create my own tactics. I wasn’t very good initially, but overall I did okay. I think.
The only formation that I have ever use is the one without wingers. My favourite is the 4-3-1-2. So I created one for Everton. It’s the only one I know. I know I’ve never won the league, but personally I think it is a success. However, when I came to Monaco, there’s THOMAS LEMAR. He is, by far, the best player at the club. I have to create a tactic that will get the best out of him. So I decided to ditch my 4-3-1-2 and use a classic old faithful 4-4-2.
I want my squad to :
Defend and attack as a unit. Strikers are the first defender and defender is the first attacker.
Aggressive pressing. Pressing starts high up the pitch.
Free flowing football. Lots of creative freedom.
Defensively solid. Solid 2 banks of 4 when defending
To translate my visions to FM terms, I have chosen :
Mentality : Standard
Shape : Very Fluid
By choosing Standard + Very fluid, I expect my players to :
Compact. Players are closer to each other thus enabling us to press aggressively.
Move as a unit. When we’re attacking, all players wil move up together and vice versa.
Reduced distinction of mentalities between players.
PLAYER ROLES AND INSTRUCTIONS
GK D : Roll it out, Distribute to full backs
FB A : Mark tighter, Mark specific position (AML)
CD D : None
CD D : None
FB S : Mark tighter, Mark specific position (AMR)
IW S : Sit Narower
DLP D : Close down much less
CM S : Shoot less often
W A : None
CF S : None
AF A : None
IN GAME ANALYSIS
Let’s have a look at one my UCL group games against Bayern. They field a 4-3-3 tactic with a DM.
Without the ball
Falcao tried to cross from the left but Neuer intercepted it with a save.
Neuer then roll the ball short to Hummels. Notice that four of our players are already pressing Bayern’s backline. The pressing limits Hummels’ passing options.
Hummels managed to sneak a pass to Javi Martinez who came deep to collect the ball then quickly lays it out to Tolisso. When Tolisso had the ball, all of the players close to him were marked and ready to be pressed whereas Lewandowski is isolated up front. Moutinho with Close Down Less instructions refrain from pressing and being our midfield screen.
Tolisso then opts to give it short to Vidal who then tried to distribute it to onrushing Grimaldo on the wings but Sylla was alert and quick enough to intercept. Job well done!
With the ball
At this point of the match, Bayern changed to a 4-4-2 with Javi Martinez and Lewandowski upfront. Kimmich tried to lump the ball forward to Martinez but Moutinho intercepts.
Moutinho is quickly closed down by three Bayern players.
Moutinho the make a short back pass to Glik who the quickly lays it out wide to Toure. Notice the space in front of him. It is a space that could be utilised by Sylla, our Inverted Winger on Sit Narower instruction could exploit.
Toure indeed made a pass to Sylla.
Sylla is quickly closed down by two Bayern players had no choice but pass it to Moutinho who offers a short option. Notice the space in front of Moutinho. I chose the Complete Forward role on Support so that he would drop deeper to connect with midfield. But it didn’t happen in this highlight. On the other hand,notice what a good position Kovalenko has put himself in.
Lo and behold, Moutinho, being the brilliant man like always, receive the pass, stops the play, change direction, saw Kovalenko and quickly released the ball to him. Kovalenko then dribbles forward, pass the ball into the path of Falcao who then squares it for Cutrone for an easy tap in. Brilliant play by Moutinho and smart movement from Kovalenko!
We won the match. Happiest day of my early Monaco days!
Thank you all for reading! Hopefully we can beat Milan in the First Knockout Round!