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About VinceLombardi

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  1. I've done clean starts like this. It's not easy. You need to be aggressive hiring scouts and getting trialists into the squad from day 1. Also, anybody remotely close to being good needs to be signed asap. Often before you can get a over 60% scouted on them, particularly in that first transfer window. If you don't move fast, they sign with someone else. And if you don't fill out the team, you are going to have the generated crap. Also expect to be weaker than the other teams. You are going to have to rely on your tactic(s) to get your guys to play above their class. Just staying up that first season will be hard. You can get some good players in that second transfer window to help you do better in the second half of the season. But you need to be careful that the first half doesn't put you too far behind.
  2. Attacking player + Attacking Team = Extra Attacking Support +Attacking Team = Almost normal attacking (positive) Attack + Positive Team = ? Player Duty more dominate than team mentality when determining individual player mentality. Maybe try and see what player mentality is with positive team instruction? Maybe normal attacking instead of extra attacking?
  3. VinceLombardi

    Positioning in build/attack phases

    Positioning is primarily a defensive attribute. Off the ball is the attacking attribute that helps them find space.
  4. One thing I have had success with is using support duty players with gets further forward and roaming PIs. They work almost as good as attacking players at getting forward, but typically only if there is space there for them. Else they drop back in support. It makes for changing movement patterns too, should you keep recycling possession. I might even go so far as to switch all the attacking roles to that -- just to see how they work out the space themselves over a couple games. And then ticking 1 or 2 back up to attacking who aren't quite playing as aggressive as you like in the box.
  5. I would suggest playing some friendlies with a few different styles. Put the matches on comprehensive highlights so you get to see a good chunk of the match and make sure you give at least a half of football to each style you want to check out. Then just sit back and watch. Take a few quick notes about each style. Maybe 1-2 quick bulletpoints about what you liked and didn't like about each. When you're done, pick out 2-3 favorites and 1-2 of your least favorites. Then look at the styles and compare what instructions are common between the ones you like and do the same with the ones you don't like. From there, you should have a short list of a few instructions that you definately want to include in your tactic and some to avoid. 2-3 hours and it should give you a real solid basis to build around. And as an added bonus you may notice a few roles for your players that they really take to well or some roles to avoid for them. No question you will get a better understanding of your team and tactics if you just sit back and watch them play without concern about the score.
  6. I think everybody is spot on above, but I do have a slight warning for the shorter passing instruction. If your players can't find a suitable target for a pass, they are more apt to clear it long, cross, or take a shot -- basically anything to get rid of the ball. By instructing them to only play short passes, you may artificially limit their options for a pass and as a result cause them to make a bad decision when those options aren't there. If your team shape isn't very compact as they move up the pitch, then shorter passes likely isn't going to have the desired effect. That said, if you do have good support and shape, then this isn't a big issue and it could help. Only way to know for sure is to test it out. I just warn you so that you don't get disheartened if it goes backwards before it gets better.
  7. Couldn't wait. I was too excited to get started. Many thanks to @wkdsoul for putting together and allowing me to use the US fantasy database he created. Green Bay Packers are on their way to the top of the Footballing world.
  8. A slight difference in that there is a bit of extra space in front of the box offset to the weak side. Nothing that allows any penetrating runs and the team can close it down quickly. However it can be exploited for a quick long shot from a decent spot or a relay pass. At the same time, it also shifts the midfield left and it can pin the ball against the sideline a bit better -- which can result in a midfield turnover. Its a wash in the end. For now I'm more focused on getting the attacking movement down. Defensive movement will be considered once the attack is locked down. All of these tactics are still very much in flux. That's the goal. It'll take a couple seasons of play to get it down, but I'm very hopeful that the result will be very satisfying. Already has a much more playbook feel than the '16 version.
  9. Appreciate it. I say its boring because it looks so vanilla on paper and in the tactics creator. The football on the pitch however is quite entertaining. The spacing and shape allows for very effective passing and defending. But I'm not spoiled with watching the real game. I only see what the match engine gives me, so its prolly a case of "you don't miss what you never knew".
  10. So I still dont want to get too in depth, but there are some subtle spacing/shape things happening between the 3 tactics above that would also be good fodder for the topic. Looking at the 3 tactics next to each other, you can compare how I'm trying bring pressure and where I am trying to get my support and while they are all the "same formation" from my perspective, they have slight tweaks in positioning: In the second tactic, I move my normally centered STC to the right. This opens up space for all the attacking players coming in from the left. Additionally, it pulls the defense back to the right towards the STC. You could play him in the center, and he might be a bit more effective personally. But his subtle shift only marginally hurts him, and really assists the other players. In the third tactic, I shift one of the CM to the center. This works similarly to the STC above and helps free up space for the Wingback that I'm trying to bring free. And because a WB is a relatively low priority target, about any player can help make space for him. Ideally it looks something like this: And if designed well can be seen across the entire pitch on the build up of about every play. In this, the defense may have a free man, but because of the way they prioritize attacking players, he is going to drop into position on the close side of the field, meanwhile my player is going to get a free run on goal all the way from the halfline. As a final note, some players do this job of moving the defense much better than others. STC and attacking wings (both AML/R and MR/L) are high priorities for the defense to cover. DMs and Wide defenders are both low priority. So its much more effective to use a high priority position to do the pulling. So getting a free DR/L by using a MR/L is much easier than trying to use a DR/L to free up a MR/L, Compare:
  11. Nothing wrong with any of this. But I think it would do you well to define few terms. What is "attractive possession based football"? Is that slow paced? Fast? Where are the passes occuring? How would you describe them? Probing? Safe? What are good quality chances? Are they crosses to a big man? Through balls to a runner? Do you want to feed your scorers at their feet or in the air? What do you want your defense to look like? These questions will really help design the tactic before you even start looking at roles or duties.
  12. So I’ve been playing around, resurrecting my American Football system from FM16 (Check it out here), and I thought what I am doing right now might be helpful as an illustration for how shape and space interact with one another, particularly for people struggling to create their own tactics. So my first step in creating a tactic is to conceptualize what/how it is going to work. Most people spend far too little time here before they get into the tactics screen, and if you don’t have a solid understanding of the end product, it will be difficult to evaluate and improve the tactic. For my system, among other things, I require that I spread my opponent across the entire pitch. This requires that I pay particularly close attention to my shape and how I cover the space on the field. To start my tactic/system off, my first goal is to establish a baseline shape to meet my goal, in my case, to target/spread the defense across the entire field. I have several formations I’m working out of, but for simplicity, let’s take my 34 formation aka 4-1-4-1 since everybody has a good idea of how the 4-1-4-1 works. As a basic understanding for what I am going to explain, my specific team and player instructions aren’t super useful. Most are going to be more or less copies from the FM16 system as I’m still early in the process. I will broadly explain what is happening as we go on. Now if this tactic looks boringly simple, good. It should. I am just aiming for something super simple so that the shape and spacing is reliable and predicable game to game, highlight to highlight. I don’t want a tactic that only runs beautifully when a certain player roams into the special spot. I need my tactics to work the way it is designed 9 out of 10 times and simple will get you that. And my target is simple. I want the MR/ML to crash to the center and work with the striker in the center to threaten the goal. Everybody else is more or less support to make that happen. When it works it should create a very simple and repetitive shape. 3 in the font, 4 in the mid in support, a DM as a single pivot and the CD back to defend. It looks like this: The yellow line are the goal scorers and the people I’m trying to get into the box. The red line is their support. The white circle is the pivot to recycle possession. The goal is to keep each of the lines more or less straight and maintaining their separation down the field so that all the players get to their respective place at once. If the attack gets to the box, but the support isn’t behind them, then the tactic is not going to work well. The simplicity of this tactic cannot be overstated. This formation is essentially what happens when everybody moves forward from their defensive positions at the same pace. It works because of the support duties move forward at the same rate and the symmetry of roles/duties keeps it uniform left to right, front to back. This tactic may not be creative, but looking at the spacing created by the solid shape, I have really good positioning on any attacking sequence. My 3 best goal scorers are right where they are most dangerous and they have support well placed around them. Any rebounds out of the box are likely to get picked up by one of my players. You can base an entire tactic around just this – that’s essentially what my FM16 system did. Just get your players to the location where they play the best and let the players take it from there. Now this attack is boring and predicable. And against a stubborn opponent it is unlikely to rack up a lot of goals. But this is still a super valuable place to start. If you cannot get your players to move in the shape you want with just the basic roles/duties, you don’t have any chance of pulling it off with a Treq and a Raum and a False 9 running around. Just getting your players to move from one end of the pitch to the other at the right tempo and keeping the right shape is a huge part to having success with a tactic. If you can’t regularly get your players into the right place at the right time, then they can’t be regularly successful at executing the overlap or underlap that you need to unlock the D. And so instead 3 out of 4 attacks sputter out harmlessly and the remaining ones are just successful enough to keep you tweaking a tactic that never had the right bones to be good to begin with. I know I’ve put in the work on the basics, when the majority of my highlights look like this: The team moves forward at pace and both lines keep their integrity and spacing while the ball is worked up into a scoring position. It not until I get a tactic/formation to this point that I even start to work with it in a more advanced fashion. Because again, if the tactic is not reliable, then I can’t count on it to work the way I need in a match. But once I get at this point, I can introduce new elements. So the tactic above is my “34 Base” play. Think of it like a cover 2 or cover 3 defense for those that know American Football. I have several plays for that formation (I call it a 34), and this tactic/play is the basis for all of them. By starting with this tactic as a template every time, I know I have reliable bones that I’m building on. From there I can develop something like 34 Sweep Left: This play uses the same formation but shifts the action up the left side of the pitch in an effort to overload it with numbers. On the left side the ML still runs inside, but he is joined by a WBL racing up the flank on an overlap and a MCR crashing into the box from deep. The goal is to completely overrun the left side to get a free runner, or else draw the defense to the left and go back to the MR who should have a winnable 1v1. If I were to draw the same lines as the formation above it would look like this: The third image really helps highlight how this overload on the left side can free up space on the right side by drawing in the defense. I would also point out that despite there only being 3 players trying to get into the box, they are already getting very congested. This should also help illustrate why too many attackers is a bad thing as they can compete for space. I would be very wary of any tactic designed to have more than 2-3 players getting into the box. Or alternatively 34 Crash Left DR Blitz: Here the team again pushes the defense’s left side with an overload. But rather than attack the gaps, it focuses on drawing the defense to the left by invading the zones in front of the defenders. This pulls the defense left while the right defender needs to cover the MR on the flank, stretching the B gap between the CD and DL on the right side. This gap is then exploited by an attacking WBR. I’m not going to get too much into the individual plays, but I hope that this has been helpful to show and explain some tools/ideas to help people develop their own tactics in regard to shape and space. Particularly in regards to starting simple with your tactic with your base movements and then layer your more advanced stuff over the top. If you take your time to understand the simplified version of your tactic/formation, you will have a much better understanding of what/how your tactic works and how it goes wrong when it doesn’t work.
  13. VinceLombardi

    Playing FM more reactively

    “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” That's a lot of what is informing my decisions right now and with the system generally. I'm always trying to improve the worst parts and anything that works is a low priority for experimentation at that moment. With the Team Instructions, particularly the "Attack" system, I was concern when I started, but I'm not too worried having played around with it. Right now, I'm using the counter-press transition instruction on the Control and Attack systems. Both systems apply pressure to force the opposing team to pass the ball. I combine that with the Counter Attack instruction in the Attack system because I'm trying to create an attack in transition. But the Control system's goal on defense is to just to regain possession, so I have the Hold Shape instruction there. I use neither instruction on the Balance system as it leans harder players making the right call situationally. I get most of what I want. Might fine tune it some more after I sort the other issues with the system. Really enjoying the new roles for the outside players. They work really well and give me tons of options I didn't have in 16. Still playing around with what to do inside. I've thrown the SS (A) out entirely. And because the old formations were so reliant on that player/role to destabilize the defense, they are getting tossed too. Early experiments with PF(S), AF(A) and CM(A) have been showing promise and I suspect that the final product will feature more runners from deep and no strikerless formations. I also think the final product in 19 is going to resemble an actual playbook even more than the 16 version.
  14. VinceLombardi

    Your managerial "role model" ?

    This is the pep talk I give my players when I take over a team.
  15. VinceLombardi

    Your managerial "role model" ?

    John Madden. "Usually the team that scores the most points wins the game.”