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Everything posted by flipsix3

  1. Entirely different tactic here, but you offer some really usesful advice in terms of (1) analysing goals and differentiating between tactical problems and player error, and (2) having the courage of your convictions when things start to dip. Neither are exactly rocket science, but it's easy to lose sight of the simple things. I'm playing in the Danish 3rd tier (amateur teams) and adopted/adapted a 3-5-2 tactic that had some weaknesses at the back - although mostly down to (lack of) player quality. Made a couple of minor defensive tweaks and we tightened up and ran really well into the 4 month winter break. Came back from the break and had a bit of an up-and-down run for 3 or 4 games. Again I checked the goals we were conceding (not a tactical issue, for the most part), and decided to stick with our game plan. Cue an unbeaten run of 10 or 11 games (winning all but one) and a late charge to the title. Now we're up it would've been easy to start over, but. A couple of tweaks to personnel and the same tactic looks generally good. Sure we lose games, but only gone expected, but we win some too - and every now and the. We demolish the opposition. I put most of our success down to an established tactic that has become second nature, and a settled core squad of 15-18 players.
  2. Just another :applause:on the excellent thread Jambo - plenty of food for thought, and certainly some ideas (around monitoring and adapting) that I want/need to take on board. Keep up the great work.
  3. As someone who has been adopting and adapting a similar (in some respects) approach I'd suggest that you benefit from encouraging opponents to play against the touchlines. They could try to play through your heavily populated midfield, but your shape actively encourages them to the flanks where they face reduced passing outlets in threatening areas - I'd expect that a lot of their attacks come from crosses into a well defended box. You're right that your BWMs will step out to back up your wingbacks - even just one of these at DM will help on that front - again cutting off potential passing lanes to an opponent's wide man. Take a look at the post match analysis tools and I'd be surprised if your opponents are completing a lot of passes in the central channel of your final third. @JLAspey on Twitter laid some really nice foundations for that sort of approach, and that's what I've been building on to great effect.
  4. Fulham (7th in Prem 2013/4 and 2014/5), Huddersfield (14th in Prem by end of 2017/18), and David Luiz (still somehow holding down a £120k/wk deal at Chelsea in 2018 ) More than any of them though, Karlsruhe SC. With the squad I have there really is no way I ought to be about to go into my second Champions League campaign, having finished 3rd in the Bundesliga twice.
  5. A 5 star Potential youth for who? Where? A scout at a Conference side, with Conference players, is going to rate a lot of youth prospects as 5* but a scout at United or Barca is going to show many of them much much lower. People need to shake this idea of absolutes - 5* isn't 5* outright, it's 5* relative to your club and your current squad. Chances are a 5* youth, as judged by Barca staff, can become world class (there's no guarantee - been there, done that). There's no guarantee that a 5* youth, as judged by Wrexham, is ever going to be more than a lower league squad player.
  6. Thanks for all the work, downloaded and save created to play at some point. Having said that, just one minor point regarding Blackburn Rovers. Where is Simon "all time top scorer" Garner? Sheesh. Good work all the same though, gotta appreciate the effort put into a labour of love like this.
  7. Strasbourg (French 3rd tier) is a pretty decent start in terms of facilities/setup. Better than most of the league, following relegation for financial issues, but not overpowered
  8. Mexico... http://flipsix3fm.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/world-cup-dreams-part-2.html NB: I only played a short-term save with a team who had already qualified.
  9. It's a good call Trepanated, definitely worth considering - when setting up your set pieces - how your players will react when they switch out off set piece mode. And I do think that's exactly what happens, at some point a trigger fires to say "not a set piece any more" and (potentially) all hell breaks loose.
  10. Good call on Rivera, he was definitely the more incisive of the wide men, so you could easily mirror my setup to put him up at AML. Agree about the central roles, they really do come down to personal taste (and the players at your disposal)
  11. That's where I perhaps fall down, certainly in a 'real' game situation (i.e. playing a match in my own save). You have to bear in mind that I watched this one on 'full match' and skipped very little - although I will nearly always play on Comprehensive, so I do see plenty of action. I also, in between doing stuff for work, spent nearly 3.5 hours watching the match and stopping/reviewing to make notes. I enjoyed doing so for the purposes of this exercise, because part of what I'm trying to do is better appreciate tactical nuances outside of FM. In terms of playing FM matches that's just not going to happen, so I'm likely to spot a lot less of what's going on in the detail, and have less to work with in my decision making. All that being said, here's a few ideas of how I might have approached this for Cruz (some repetition of my analysis in places): I'm not a big fan of wingers, as anyone following my blog will have seen. I did see some cutting inside, but both Cruz players seemed intent on mainly staying wide and looking for crosses that were ineffectual. I either encourage one of them inside more, or both and drop a striker. The latter would be pretty close to my Karlsruhe save at the moment, and would let me drop an extra body into midfield where Cruz are desperately weak in this match. Given that Chivas are reliant on wingbacks for width, I'd be tempted to move one of my MR/ML pair into the AM line. Set him as an Inside Forward, with Cross Less Often, and Cut Inside With Ball (or whatever it is). Pushing him that much higher in the shape will hopefully keep one of Chivas' wingbacks honest. On the other side either tell the wide midfielder to stay wide, and encourage his fullback forward with Cut Inside as a PI, or tell the wide mid to sit a little narrower and give the fullback the wingback treatment, getting forward more and looking for the overlap. Take the second striker that we've dropped and either make a flat three in midfield (one on DM-D set to manmark Chivas' AMC), or play with our own DMC. Do something about those set piece routines. I like Jimbokav's approach to these, and indeed my routines in FM14 are based on Twitter conversations I had with him. There needs to be more defined duties for our players, both attacking and defending set pieces. I'm not sure that I'd go to the extent of tweaking mid-match, as Chivas appeared to do, but I guess you could have several copies of an identical tactic saved, just with slightly different set-piece setups. Finally, given that we are (I'm assuming) rank outsiders for the match I'd be less inclined to go Defensive and/or Rigid. I'd want a bit more fluidity, and a team who weren't afraid to get forward and make Chivas defend. Overall maybe something like this... Being FMC, assuming you've got the players, you can get away with that of course. In the 'full fat' version I'd always want something like that as one of my three tactics on the board to ensure that we were fluid in it. Potentially you can go a little more adventurous with a couple of Roles/Duties - push the DLP to Support for instance, or make the BBM a CM-A, but that's my overall feel. More bodies in midfield and a bit of variety to the wide play.
  12. I suspect, like many things in FM, it's a matter of personal interpretation. To me they looked quite deep at the times when I was concentrating on their position - but perhaps just deep compared to how I'd like to see them play. Having gone back and watched again I'll grant that they do get further forwards at times, but if you look at their goal as an example, even when their forwards are playing in the box, the DCs are back beyond the halfway line and somewhere between 10 and 15 yards deeper than Chivas' most advanced player. The other issue, which perhaps exaggerated it for me, was that as the game wore on their midfield seemed to drop deeper to the point where the two lines of four we almost on top of each other.
  13. Right then, with the approach I’ve taken to FM14 and my desire to develop a greater understanding of tactics (hence my blog and FM-specific Twitter account) this ought to be right up my street. Here’s my first run at it, based solely on the PKM file, and having read none of the doubtless excellent input from the guys in the parent thread (rest assured I’ll be off there as soon as I’ve posted this). Expect this to be Savage-esque at best :o. The good news is that I know little or nothing about the Mexican game, and also the match has been played in 2021, so I’m not likely to be led by any real-life assumptions here. Finally I should say that I’ll likely be posting an analysis that – for me at least – raises more questions than answers. I’ll try to stick to those things that I believe can be directly addressed in FM, or will specifically state when this isn’t the case. For all that I enjoy the game, and the depth in which some people analyse these things, there are plenty of little nuances which I don’t think we can ever hope to really influence, and there are plenty that I’m sure we can but I have little idea as to how. FIRST IMPRESSIONS My first stop is the Match Stats summary, and it looks like it ought to have been a fairly evenly matched game. The only standout is the differential in terms of Clear Cut Chances and Half Chances (but we’ve all been in a situation where we created a bucket-load of these and still only scored one, so it’s not a massive factor for me). In terms of formations Cruz’s lack of meaningful chances suggests that either their wide men have been unable to find recipients, or have been nullified themselves. Perhaps their central pairing in midfield have both sat to deep and left the strikers isolated against a defensive triangle (DCx2 and DM). As for Chivas, their AM is likely to have caused additional problems for the Cruz defensive pairing, drawing one or other out of position to make space for the strikers. That’s all so much speculation though, and I guess that this isn’t what the thread’s about, so let’s jump into the action. Early on, and I get that it might be too early to be really representative, I’m already seeing that idea that the Cruz wide men have no meaningful targets – at least not for building attacking play. Rivera has driven inside from the left wing, and has nothing on as such. Cruz’s strikers are more than covered by the Chivas back line, and there’s no signs of the fullbacks providing width on the overlap – to the extent that Chivas’ DR is free to stay with Rivera and double up with his MC-R and apply pressure if he wants. I’ve highlighted some of the coverage zones that Chivas players are providing here, but by no means all of them. What I have shown is more than enough to restrict Rivera’s options. I’d be looking for Cruz’s left fullback to be pushing into the acres of space ahead of him here, where he either gets a ton of room to receive the ball or he draws one of the two men away from Rivera to give him a bit of breathing room. I’d also be looking at the more advanced of Cruz’s two MCs and wanting him a little further over to the right – it would be a risky pass between two Chivas players, but could be played with more pace which would help. Alternatively the MC could sit a little deeper (still more to the right) and one of Cruz’s right flank players could be offering that ball – ideally the fullback pushing on and maybe coming inside a little. Finally that Cruz defensive line seems a little on the deep side too. Ultimately Rivera does thread a pass through to his striker, but by the time he receives the ball he’s surrounded by three red shirts and has nowhere to go when the tackle comes. At 2m 16s Rivera makes a good run out wide, but again there’s no-one in support of the two strikers. Salgado, on the right wing, is an option at the far side of the box but realistically it’s four against seven Chivas players plus the keeper. Chivas 0 – Cruz Azul 1 Of course, for all that I’ve knocked them, Cruz go and get the first goal – typical. There is a decent Chivas move before that (4m 10s) but I have a feeling that I’ll get more opportunities to talk about their attacking play. At 4m 33s Fuentes (Chivas striker) makes a mistake in not playing the ball into the path of Fabian, and instead looking like he’s trying for a ball into feet – it was a first-time pass though, having received a 25-yard pass on the half-volley, so I’ll give him some leeway for the error there. Clearly he had time to take a touch; without knowing the Team and Player instructions it’s hard to pass judgement, maybe I’d be looking to discourage him from playing risky passes but it is an isolated incident. When Quintero recovers the ball for Cruz (4m 35s) he has Cárdenas available inside his own half, so I’m assuming that he’s playing as the ‘support’ striker of the pair. I was expecting him to drive at the Chivas defence, rather than lay the ball out to the wing so quickly, but Salgado handles himself well and takes on his man before checking back to deliver a pass back to Quintero (4m 47s) Quintero has at least shown some desire to push up from midfield, and has somehow remained unmarked in the process, but even knowing that there’s a goal coming I’d be concerned that (i) the Cruz left fullback is again leaving acres of open space that he could move into, and (ii) with Quintero pushed up Rodriguez needs to be shifting across to his left to provide some cover. Del Rio (boxed in red) probably gets the blame for the goal. At this point I don’t think that he’s in a poor position per se (although he is in danger of playing Alvarado on side), but as Quintero advances he decides to close in on Cárdenas, having initially allowed the striker to gain a yard of space by checking his run. Given that he’s facing play, a through-ball is going to cause him difficulties unless he can directly intercept it – in that case all well and good, but otherwise he’s got to recover and spin a 180 whilst the (presumably) quicker striker can judge the path of the ball and ‘just’ run onto it. This is one of those situation I mentioned, where I’m not sure how much we can expect to directly influence that level of minutiae? Cárdenas has the advantage and manages to get goal-side of his man, and that’s the root cause of the goal for me. Yes the Chivas defence recovers quickly but now they’re disorganised – not what you’d expect from the earlier action – and the ball is pinging around the area. Alavarado makes a great tackle (4m 53s) and Cárdenas has time to carve out a speculative effort. It's a slightly fortunate goal for me, and the result of the sort of momentary lapse that is difficult to legislate against even for world class players. On a side note, as is often the case, I have no idea where the Chivas players are coming from with their offside appeals. CHIVAS BEGIN TO RECOVER For a couple of minutes Chivas appear shaken, and there are some fairly poor direct balls played. I’ve no idea if the AI manager has tweaked things as a result of the goal, or is about to, but they don’t look particularly well disciplined at this point. There are a couple of Hollywood passes attempted, which would look great if they came off, but as it is just deliver the ball right back to Cruz. Personally, given the lack of pressure that the Cruz back line have been applying, I would be looking at a shorter passing game at this point, probably playing with a Counter mentality to allow for patient build-up. I’ve seen little to suggest that Chivas shouldn’t be able to retain possession and pick holes in their opponents, and given that Cruz appear reliant on their wide men, when Chivas turn it over they’re likely to have numerical superiority through the middle of the park with their compact diamond and a striker dropping deep. Their diamond is doing a good job of shifting laterally to follow the run of play, meaning that their wingbacks always have options to play the ball inside rather than be reliant on the cross – just what Cruz seem to be missing in advanced positions. Chivas should be looking at rapid short-ish vertical passes to pressure the Cruz back line, with two strikers and an AM running up against a pair of central defenders. The Cruz fullbacks are left covering attacking wingbacks from Chivas, or maybe doubling up with their wingers if they also pick up those threats – if that happens, then Chivas have an overload elsewhere – result. One notable point during this passage of play, Andrade (MC-R Chivas) looks happy closing down Rivera (ML Cruz). On paper it may appear that Cruz’s adherence to width should be offering them an advantage down the flanks, on their left – at least – that doesn’t appear to be the case. At this point, watching Chivas playing very much as a unit, and Cruz in more fixed banks, I’m suspecting that the former are close to the Fluid end of the spectrum, and the latter are far more Rigid. Fabian (AM-C Chivas) is the man dropping all the way back to receive the second ball after a Cruz cross into the box (12m 6s) 9m 38s “Eng-land, it’s just like watching Eng-land”... Cruz Azul launch a long aerial ball into the corner for a striker to chase. Cold sweats and flashbacks to England in Brazil. Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Even if he had beaten the (Sweeper?) Keeper to it, he had one man in support against three defenders. Called It (Chivas 1 – Cruz Azul 1) Okay so it doesn’t pan out exactly as I suggested, but it’s pretty close. 13m 45s and a Cruz throw has resulted in the ball being lofted into the Chivas box where the defence outnumbers the attacking players by at least two bodies. The clearing header comes out to Riojas on the edge of the area, Riojas is one of Chivas’ strikers – everyone is back except his strike partner and Cruz have four men between the ball and the halfway line, simple right? But here comes the counter attack. By the time Riojas releases the ball, five seconds later, he has Fabian (AM-C) racing through the middle and numerous men about to run past him. The Cruz players are in full retreat too, but facing their own goal which means that they have two realistic choices – they either have to get far enough ahead of their men that they can turn and face, or they risk committing a foul to take the ball if their man receives it. Fuentes runs diagonally with the ball, allowing Fabian (AM-C) and Garcia (MCL) to overtake him, but more importantly dragging Fregoso (DR Cruz) with him. Cue acres of space and a clever little change of direction from Fabian. Fuentes sticks a through ball into a huge gap and Fabian has time to take a touch and slot it home. By this time Riojas (the striker who started the move) has just about caught up with his partner, and everyone in blue is still facing their own goal trying to get back. Two quick, short(ish) vertical passes separated by a short dribble. Simple and effective. This is where I probably come unstuck though, as I’m not sure what I could’ve done as Cruz manager to mitigate that one. The play was all in and around the Chivas box, and at the time that the throw was taken there were five Cruz players back around the halfway mark to cover two red shirts – four once Rivera (ML) made a late run to the back stick. (13m 44s). Maybe therein lies the issue, too many back? That guaranteed Chivas numerical superiority in the box and made it unlikely that Cruz would profit – perhaps 3vs2 would be a better number, so a tweak of the Set Piece Creator maybe? Once the ball was turned over, of course, it was a footrace. Cruz had a lot of players high up the pitch, but still had numbers back as Riojas released that first pass. One has to assume that Chivas just has quicker players, given the outcome of the footrace(?) It also didn’t help that at least two of the Cruz defence were presumably looking to play for offside – check the raised arms at 13m 58s, one of them being the culprit playing Fabian on. Possession, Schmossession. Immediately following the goal we can see why the possession stats looked reasonably even, slightly in Cruz’s favour in fact. They have plenty of the ball but, once again, there’s little or no support for the strikers and wingers. In attack their formation looks to become largely a 4-2-4, and even when the fullbacks do push on they’re rarely moving beyond the central midfield line to offer any sort of overlap/underlap. Cruz are left hitting hopeful crosses into a well organised defence, or speculative efforts from 20-odd yards out. Even when they do get the chance to counter (17m 45s) there’s nobody busting a gut to make up ground as there was for the Chivas equaliser. Quintero is left with one option going forward – a ball to Alvarado who has a pair of defenders between him and the box. By the time the wingers appear on the scene, and the ball is worked wide, Chivas have men back. Better examples do follow, but rarely do I see a counter that would worry me if I was playing the match as the Chivas manager. Are Cruz playing a Defensive mentality? Even then I’d expect to see more commitment to the break. I’m beginning to feel like the visitors arrived with a target of just avoiding a big defeat. Not that it’s going to work out for them. Another observation during this period is that the Chivas central defensive pairing appear to be fairly comfortable to just sit goal-side of the Cruz strikers and let them pass the ball back to what support they do have. I’m not seeing a lot of diving in to tackles so I’m assuming some combination of DC-D and DC-C with instructions that encourage cautious and organised play. Large passages of Cruz possession go by with little happening (see 22m 9s) other than their possession stat ticking upwards until someone tries an overly-adventurous pass. By contrast (and perhaps my knowledge of the end result is colouring this), Chivas’ possession seems characterised by recycling the ball in advanced positions, and looking for proper penetration. Chivas 2 – Cruz Azul 1 – Comedy Hour It all starts with another Cruz throw-in (26m 47s) and, once again, the team in blue should have plenty of bodies back to cover the counterattack. Again I wonder if it’s too many, making a turnover of possession more likely, when Salgado (MR – Cruz) runs the ball into the box he comes up against THREE defenders, and Chivas still have bodies left over to cover their six yard box 4-to-2. Salgado is short of options because, once again, his central midfielders are sitting far too deep to offer a realistic ball. His attempt to find Quintero is foolish, given that Chivas have a man covering, and when that man (again it’s a Chivas striker, Fuentes) flicks a header over Quintero there’s no attempt to get back by the Cruz midfielder. Riojas has so much time to collect the ball that it’s painful, and as with the equaliser there are red shirts on the charge. When Riojas turns and launches an aerial through ball (27m 2s) Chivas are 3-on-3 against Cruz’s two central defenders and their right fullback. Farina (DL) is racing back, but the play is moving towards the other side of the pitch so he’s somewhat redundant at this point. What follows is one of those moments that has you tearing your hair out if you’re managing Cruz. At first things look OK, Monroy (DCR) and Fregoso (DR) track the two runners chasing the ball and, even though they don’t win the header, Henrique (DCL) looks to have Fabian (AMC Chivas) covered. To me it looks like Monroy is the one who books an appointment with the hair-dryer, and I can’t work out what he’s trying to do – I assume it’s a weak attempt at a backpass to the keeper? At this point (27m 7s) Farina (DL) is the last hope but there’s no attempt to track back any further as he presumably thinks that the backpass is safe, I have to assume that’s the reason why he stops and watches as TWO Chivas players run into the box and leave the keeper with no chance at all. 2-1 up, from being behind, and it’s two quick counters through the middle of the pitch that have done the damage. The thing I’m finding difficult to understand is how Cruz are committing so many men forward at set pieces, but rarely seem to have those numbers up there when they’re building up the flanks in open play. Here they are a couple of minutes later, with the banks of their 4-4-2 highlighted. The fullback on the attacking side is now starting to show more intent, but there’s still little support in the middle of the park with midfield and defence both sitting relatively deep. Any second ball dropping into the highlighted area is almost certainly going to come for a Chivas player, and the speed at which they transition from defence to attack means that Cruz are going to be on the back foot despite their numbers. I’d prefer to see Quintero closer to level with the red shirt to his immediate right, and the Cruz defensive line at least up to half way in this picture - the D-line is simply far too deep, especially when it's creating room for an AMC to roam around. Shortly after this Cruz get another throw, again have five men covering two, and again turn the ball over. Chivas break but not as quickly as before (28m 58s), and on this occasion Henrique picks off the pass. Had the Chivas players shown the same hunger as n the first two goals, then I think they’d have been looking at a two goal cushion inside 30 minutes. Despite their early goal, things do not bode well for Cruz Azul. Rest of the First Half... NOTE: I need to speed things up at this point, so far I’ve spent about 2 hours watching and making notes on the first half! Much like the above, lack of support in the middle of the park (AM areas) for Cruz going forward, outnumbered at set pieces, and struggling to cover the combination of two strikers and an attacking midfielder at the back. Chivas continue to look threatening, but perhaps have slowed things down a little and are happy to settle for their lead at the break? Second Half – Early Doors Chivas continuing to play a patient game, happy in possession and looking to unlock the killer ball (chance at 47m 10s is a good example). The early penalty is a bonus that I’m not sure I would attribute to anything tactical so much as to the mental traits of the Cruz defender – I’m assuming that he was probably somewhat wound up by then, and lashed out. There's a chance for a Cruz counter at 50m, but again Chivas are just that much quicker in the transitions. I guess that this is, to some degree, affected by your choice of tempo but they seem to be playing quite a slow one otherwise so I’m not sure – maybe it’s more the Mentality or the balance of Fluidity/Rigidness? At 3-1 up, and Chivas clearly in control, things starting to get a bit niggly at the back for Cruz – a bit of discipline slipping, which will again be primarily down to the players’ mental traits. When they are on the attack, there’s still little or no intent from the Cruz fullbacks. I’m suspecting that they’re both set to either FB-D or FB-S. I’d be looking to make at least one of them a wingback (still in the D-line) at WB-S or WB-A and, given the lack of attacking intent from the central midfielders, encourage them to come inside (especially if we’ve got a left-footer on the right, or vice-versa) whilst the MR and ML maintain the width. Cruz need someone to contest the second balls dropping to Cid (DMC Chivas). For Chivas the interplay between their two strikers is great, and I’m suspecting that at least one of them has been asked to ‘Move into the Channels’ which makes some sense with an AMC also pushing into the front line. There’s a great example here at 60m 17s... As Riojas prepares to receive the ball Fuentes, his strike partner, drops wide off his marker whilst staying the right side of the Cruz DR (out of shot just below him). Somehow the two Cruz DCs had got switched over, and when Riojas makes the pass Henrique is going to open the door even further by trying to move back towards the DCL slot. It’s a ridiculous move, and my assumption is that it’s got to be a combination of poor mental traits (Decision Making) and a Rigid outlook (his primary focus is to regain his allotted position). He will recover once Fuentes is through, and may do enough to force him to maintain his width – which contributes to Borrego making the save, but I’d still be furious. Even when Cruz recover possession from the ensuing corner, there’s no apparent desire to get forward and they end up passing the ball around for too long. INTERESTING NOTE: Cruz corner at 64m 30s and they have better numbers forward to contest the ball in, whilst still having three back to cover Chivas’ lone man – has the Chivas AI manager tweaked Set Pieces mid-game to push less men forward? It's a better approach for Cruz, than for their earlier throw-ins in advanced positions, as they’re closer to parity in the box and have a better chance of winning the ball. They have to transition quickly if they lose the ball though, although it’s not an issue in this case as the Chivas Keeper holds it for a while. Chivas definitely looking much happier to just soak up the ‘pressure’ such as it is, and to push forward slowly, but there's no lack of movement when they’re in the last third. AMC definitely very much part of the attack, likely an AM-A or Treq rather than an AP or Enganche? (not shy about getting ahead of the strikers). If there’s a ‘playmaker' role in the Chivas midfield, then I suspect that it’s Cid (DMC) with one of the central guys focusing on a more defensive duty (covering across to pick up Cruz’s wide man) and one pushing on to add yet more support to attacks – looks like that might be Castillo now (on for Garcia). Cruz Azul seem to have gone into damage limitation mode, defensive line appears deep and midfield sitting close to them – their strikers are somewhat isolated until Cruz push into the final third. Chivas 4 – Cruz Azul 1 – The Coup de Grace My assumptions about Castillo look like they may be confirmed as the Chivas midfield diamond play a blinder for their fourth. Cid (DMC) to Fabian (AMC), touch wide to Castillo (MCL) and a run into the box that takes FIVE! men with him (73m 17s). If you watch the PKM you’ll note that Fuentes, the deeper lying of the Chivas strikers (DLF-S I suspect?), drops off as Castillo drives into the box. Whilst it won’t be necessary, with Riojas banging it home, Fuentes is now one of three red shirts in place to pick up any loose clearances. Cruz Azul are sitting ever deeper and deeper, with Alvarado dropping beyond Cid (DMC Chivas) to try and offer a ball to the midfield. Chivas 5 – Cruz Azul 1 – Overkill Not a lot to say about this one, it’s a well delivered deep cross to the far post with Castillo on the end of it. The Cruz defence are guilty of breaking out too quickly following the free-kick moments before, and only three of the back four are in the area when the ball comes in – trying to cover five Chivas players. Game. Set. Match. Conclusions: Cruz Azul’s 4-4-2 looks to have been very rigid, and played with a deep defensive line. They were overly reliant on wide play from their midfield, which was rarely supported by fullbacks or the midfield. I suspect a Support and Defend combination for the MCs. Their defence was particularly vulnerable to Chivas’ man in the hole. They must have been very fearful of their hosts, and set out with a very cautious gameplan that backfired. Generally speaking, when I've got nothing to lose, I'll look to be a bit more adventurous and rely on making the opposition defence do some work. Chivas looked to be playing a more Fluid game, and their diamond midfield shifted well as a unit to cover for their lack of width. Wide play came courtesy of deep-starting wingbacks, with the defensive triangle of DCx2 and DLP(?) at DMC holding the line. I suspect that Chivas were odds-on favourites from the off, and played a patient game on the counter during the first half – confident that they’d get their chances. The second half saw a much more possession based game from Chivas (I'd be interested to see the possession share at the break, my guess would be even more in the visitors' favour), and Cruz Azul were getting frustrated at the back. Chivas were free to pick the visitors apart as and when they wanted to. Throughout the game Cruz gave Chivas far too much time and space to dominate in midfield and their compact diamond took full advantage. So that’s my reading of it. As I said at the start I’ve probably raised more questions than answers, in terms of FM tactical management, but I do feel like I’m getting a decent reading of games as a whole. Feel free to chip in and point out all of the places where I'm talking codswallop
  14. Rarely sign into the SI forums these days, but this one was worth it to give you a big ol' thumbs up (and also to 'bookmark' this thread for me )
  15. Leave 3 forward, preferably widely spread (I use wingers and a striker), and one lurking edge of area. That usually makes the AI leave 3-5 players back to cover. Three guys set to Mark Tall, one to Man Mark, then decide whether you mark both posts, or just one and stick a fullback on Mark Short. I still concede, but a lot less than when I pull everyone back.
  16. I'm sure it's already been said, but I'm not about to read through to check. Simply put, in terms of set pieces, the ability top select in-swinging, out-swinging, or mixed for corner types
  17. Same question here, all of a sudden (despite being signed in) I no longer get the option of Twitter under 'Post to Social Networks'. Only Facebook appears, and I haven't input any Facebook details so it's not a sign-in issue. Have tried FMC and 'full fat' save games and same on both.
  18. Romanista, thanks for the pointer - the ideal 'maintenance level' is something I need to get used to, I agree that neither has a desperate need to massively increase their strength ratings however I felt that a mid-high point within medium was perhaps prudent. I'll give it a go dropping to the lower end of medium and see how things stack up.
  19. Makes sense, I think that is the area I need to develop from my old days - I used to run schedules where everyone had an element of everything in their training, although obvious priorities to their chosen areas. I'll take a look and winding back the Ball Control and pushing Def/Tactics an extra notch or two.
  20. A good point, I guess I tend to want at least an element of all round ability which may well be wasting points - I think I had half an eye on the dribbling stat, although realistically I suppose he'd be looking to pass the ball away quickly (passing isn't great either - but when he does play I've tended towards a limited defender role to compensate) On a completely unrelated note Cleon, can I ask what skin you're using? Random, I know.
  21. Good morning gents, long time CM-FMer of old (Stories forum regular, until real life had it's wicked way). Now, like many others it seems, I find myself with some time to play again and thanks to the work of the likes of Cleon, furiousuk, and the late SFraser I'm enjoying a new found passion for playing the game at a slower pace - taking the time to develop my squad and players more. That's not to say that I had no success in the past, quite the opposite, but I believe I always did so despite rather than because of my fairly limited position-focused schedules. So here I am in FM12, embarking on a 4th season at Ewood Park which has so far seen the FA Cup, Euro Cup and League Cup arrive over the first three years - largely retaining the original squad with one or two key signings each season, but mainly focusing on bringing in youth to create the holy grail of a Wenger-esque conveyor belt of talent (but hopefully utilising and keeping it!). I've been running primarily a variation of SFraser's 4-2-3-1 system, with occasional forays into what I consider an attacking 4-4-2 (but which FM seems to look at as a 4-2-4) and I've got a dozen or so very strong prospects in my youth roster - along with a small number getting regular bench time and occasional starts in the seniors (they sit in the Reserve squad to enable full-time training schedules). I could go into them all in detail, but that would be overkill, rather I wanted to put up two particularly strong candidates along with my thought process. I'd appreciate any comment on whether you think I'm missing anything obvious,, or committing any howlers. First up is Dennis Andersen, a Danish defender with a 4-star future predicted. I picked him up around his 16th birthday and he sent last season on loan in League One - making 35 appearances (30 of them starts) and rating around 6.6. In retrospect that may have been too early to send him out(?) but I was keen to see him get competitive experience and with Det at 15 I was comfortable under a decent manager. Light on technicals, but I see plenty of potential for him to develop into a Samba-esque rock at the back - Samba will be tutoring him, but recently finished a stint with another player and is 'greyed out' at the moment (is there some set period between tutor sessions? I find myself just trying at random every few game weeks). My main issue in the immediate future is composure, hence the heavy focus on this area, and high levells of Defence and Tactics seem a given. I've also put a decent amount into ball control to try and boost those red figures up just a little... Secondly, and something of a departure from my usual youth policy, I give you Fausto Paterna - signed in the summer for a cool £10m and immediately coming in as a regular substitute and occasional starter against weaker opposition. In the past I probably would've been happy with taking him and sticking him on a regular schedule and not think twice about it, particularly if he delivers a decent number of goals, but I suspect there's potential for a real world class striker here (4.5 stars according to my staff). I play Danny Sturridge up front at present, and for the role of a lone striker Fausto is the next best option on my books by some way - at least in the longer term. Composure focus is in play again, his score isn't terrible but as a lone striker I'd like it higher, otherwise it seems logical to be spreading the load between Tactics Attack and Shooting - his technicals look more of a 'maintenance' job to me(?). He'll generally sit on the shoulder of the DC and look to interact with my 3 AMC slots - Creativity is probably on the low side therefore, and I'm wondering if I ought to push Attacking a little higher in exchange for a notch or two off Ball Control or Shooting? Again not Tutored at present as Sturridge is greyed out, but with Det of 19 he seems the perfect choice to me. So, any thoughts/counter-arguments? edit: Apologies for small images, struggling to get to grips with embedding/linking images on the forum for some reason. Larger copies can be found here... http://www.flipsix3.co.uk/Other/FMScreens/21535399_xd77vk#!i=1738470087&k=nC5qtWf
  22. Yep, life is good even if FM12 is trying to sink its claws in (and succeeding somewhat!) Good to see the community still thriving and the (newer, mostly) old names still around KUTGW
  23. Good morning FMSers, just thought I'd better stick my head around the door and say "howdy" as I've been signing into the forums a bit recently - just to get up to speed with FM12. Been a while since I picked up a new iteration (FM05 actually) and it's feeling kind of good - a new game to learn almost from scratch and one that I'm really enjoying trying to play without trying to get into the technical side of the engine. I don't see me getting back onto the writing side I'm afraid, time remains a very precious commodity - and I'm all too aware of how writing can suddenly soak up hours and hours of it, but it's good to see this corner of the forums still going so strong (and especially good to see 10tl still doing the Ridgway thing!) Take it easy folks, and I'll try to drop in now and then to see what's cooking.
  24. Great stuff Tenthree, of course, and glad to have helped with the info on UK national papers. Keep up the excellent work!!
  25. Superb stuff 10-3 I admit to not having caught the first instalment (I don't read nearly enough on here), but I'll be going back to pick it up. Easily in the top few stories for pure quality of writing - bravo!
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