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  1. Piperita

    Tactical Advice

    Like said above, one problem is the combination of the lines with the rest of the preset and formation: You play high up with good pressing, forcing the ball up the opponent's half. Then you want it to go fast to the flanks who in turn make quick, low crosses to your forward who just has to hold in his foot to score. Problem 1: There is not much more to your game. If the opponent plays direct with a solid, static defense (which, going by your chances of gaining promotion is somewhat realistic) you have nothing to break it down except the hope for set pieces/big wins from your Wa. One possible solution: Swap your MCs and turn the Mezzala into an attack duty. This way you'll have another player lurking at the box which gives your wingers one more option and makes it harder to neutralise your box play. Personally I'd also make the right fullback more attacking but in that case I'm prejudiced; I can't stand wing pairs with the same duty (unless it is a tightly compact highly fluid passing orgy). Problem 2: As others said, there is little space to exploit as the opponent usually is still in his side when you win the ball. Thus your wingers have to dribble and your striker can not run into the ball but has to stop, increasing the possibility his shots are blocked or he is dispossessed beforehand. Alternatively, he just shoots from the backfield as his path is blocked and there are few teammates close by. One possible solution: Reduce your Defensive line and LoE. You are defensively solid and have the pace, so use it! If your wingers are not that fast, you might want to turn your DLP into a Support Duty and allow him more freedom. He'll hold the ball and spray it wide or will dare long balls to your striker. Alternatively, use a BPD (for controlled long, if sometimes risky passes) and/or an NNC (for long shots forwards your wingers/Forward might get to) for more diverse options as counter-starter. Generally, I'd start working towards one of two endgames: 1) You focus on the idea of quick counters and quick plays up front. Try the preset 'Wingplay' instructions and see how it works and slowly adapt out/in new instructions. I played a similar system (with a flat four and the DLP/BWM swapped) and the instructions handily beat my original plan and secured me first promotion and then a good midtable finish. For relatively normal systems the presets are pretty good, actually! 2) Keep the high line and press. FInd more ways to score goals. Attack duty MC/Wingback. One winger more narrow and roaming. More general compactness while at least one winger (and the opposite wingback) is made wider through PI. Try to perfect one of them and then work on implementing elements of the other approach. Sure, you have to make a choice on the lines eventually but a slower alternative or a quick option can liven up the offense *a lot*! The AssMan might say it is a negative if a fair amount of goals is scored slowly while you usually play quick but in my book options are always good!
  2. Regarding coaches and workload: Is there any downside to letting 'extra' coaches help out *everywhere*? Their stars won't feature into the calculation and they reduce all the leading coaches' workloads. I also haven't found a happyness or stress rating that might feature in there. Also, does anyone have a list what training modules count under what category?
  3. Piperita

    Inverted wingbacks

    Yes. Finally got around to use them in my normal formation and I'm having plenty of fun. The formation* in question: Sweeper Keeper — BPD(St), Libero(A), BPD(St) — IWBs, IWBa — RPM, DLPd — SS — AF, DLFs. Played with almost the standard Vertical Tiki-Taka but even slower, narrower and shorter. If the strengths are comparable or I am stronger, I face only few good attacks and force the opponents into lots of errors. Every other game I either get a penalty or an opponent is send off. Together with the Libero the IWB are the key players for the success. Offensively, they run from the back and interact with the other supportive or offensive players and (in such narrow) formations either only cut inside when close to the goal or when there is plenty of space. One of my favourite move is seeing both interact with each other which often happens from central areas to the flank and vice-versa. Defensively, they are almost like other fullbacks. But, being often found centrally, they can run back diagonally to their position, having a shorter way to their position, often cutting off opponents looking to exploit the spaces on a counter. Being on the wingback slot and on one side on attack duty, they also are good at pressing up the pitch. Their late-ish runs also help cause disorder in the box. * I am not fully happy with the SS and AF yet. From what works a somewhat more offensive AMs and another striker might be more fitting. ----------------------- Two other things: 1) Having only one-footed players or 'Refrains from using weaker foot' really cripple the role. Especially for Support duty which often gets in position for crosses or chips from the flank. On attack duty it can be helped by knocking the ball past but the üoss to dribbling or low backward crosses still are felt. 2) Due to that I really like my Support role to be either both-feeted or even to be stronger on the outer foot when used in a narrow formation. They more often run on the flank or get to chip or cross with the inner foot mostly playing it short and safe.
  4. After all the good I had to say, now I am confused. I started a lower league file with pretty garbage players. All my fullbacks can play is No-Nonsense or on Defend duty. Yet those players are (besides expectable mistakes in defensive positioning) doing what I wanted all my Bundesliga teams to do. Two games in, I have three goals from beautiful through balls. Once from my IWa to my MCa who ran over half the pitch, twiche from my FBd/NFB to the supportive striker. Normally I wouldn't give two flying hoots about a two game observation but on my hundreds of played and thousands of analysed/goal-checked games I have never seen these balls played this controlled and intelligently. It really feels like Fullbacks are half the problem and that at lower mentalities they become more balanced because at higher ones they just run up and down and cross and cross and make any game their own whatever the original plan was. On lower ones they are more open to play balls and the central team mates are less likely to pass the easy way down the flank.
  5. I am the opposite. I have so many idea left for my longterm 17 files and had a plan for a new file when 19 released in full but I just never got to it as 19 is so, so much more fun to play. Are there things left to improve? Hard yes. Are there things that are somewhat frustrating? Also yes. But all in all it is a fine game that just works for me. Sure, I am waiting for March to make it better and would be disappointed if all we got was a database update but until then I'll still play a few seasons without any regret.
  6. Piperita

    Inverted wingbacks

    Experimenting with the editor a bit: Footedness plays a big role in the calculation. Not only does the game expect the inner foot to be dominant, it also expects the outer to be weak - a 20/20 player is seen as worse than a 20/10 player. This naturally means a lot of the Either players and most regular wingbacks have comparatively bad (positional) ratings despite potentially good stats for the role. But that doesn't mean they are bad. Stats mean more than that and especially the players that can hold a ball or can pass while not being the fastest absolutely thrive in the role. Which is why Ricardo Rodriguez still is the best (left!) IWB I ever had despite the game telling me otherwise. If you want the best suitability, I fear you have to make your own IWBs. Defensive midfielders have a good spread for that as well as the more defensive IWs. A few starting CBs as well but later on they miss the offensive drive unless they are good Liberos.
  7. Having finished a big season with four active teams in different circumstances: ——I still appreciate that the Assistant has finally stopped demanding possession from weak counter-teams. But instead we now have 'Should employ a short passing game'. Similarly, the *press* won't shut up about possession... ——Pressing. Too often I see my players defining counterpressing as sending two or three guys at a player, making them unable to press the inevitable passing target. I also see way, way too often how my entire midfield retreats to my box despite full counterpress at highly urgent with a much higher line, reaulting in opponents almost running box to box without being bothered. ——Long Shots are obvious in certain circumstances but when playing different teams and situations they appear just to be a normal part of the game. I still say that off-foot screamers from LS8 players are weird but all in all it isn't as bad as first thought. ——Crossing. Especially wingbacks really try to make the game their own and make the game crossing heavy unless they are almost castrated. Which is why for my playing teams I am down to Fullbacks right now or even IWBs in narrow formations as those roles play more conservatively and patient instead of becomibg main playmakers and assist givers. ——Either half the league got their versatility upped since the beta database or retraining is a joke in this old save. U23 players with versatility ratings between 15 and 18 won't become naturals in a position they start with as accomplished. My currently short Bremen save on the new database does not have this problem so far, so really just a data issue? In general I am not a friend of this feature. I'd give it a high upper limit (e.g. 75 to 100 games) for more extreme cases (older player going from forward to defender with low versatility) but with an option to always get players to natural in the end. Especially for 'related' roles (Fullback/Wingback, CM with other central midfielders, Wingers with Wingbacks/Offensive wingers) there should be more fluidity! ——In a good team climate demands for new contracts are almost perfect, usually falling into the winter break or offseason with only few demands from players playing over their status. Only problem: While the times fit, they always start a week too early, just before the Euro League/Champions League finales which can really cause problems. ——The new tactic layout is amazing. I see myself experimenting with formations a lot more and daring to go bold because it all is so fast now! ——I'd like overlay explanations for when to asking the assistants for new PPMs. Some are self-explanatory but some are just weird. It also isn't helped that the assistants now say what attributes are helpful because for some well-rounded players too many are true. I have a 14 vision/14 vision striker with 16 finishing who has Pass>Shots. Yet when I want to unlearn it all they say is 'Passing good, you sure?' ——Board and player expectations make a lot of sense in a way. After a season of completely overachieving, my Pauli side still had a rather realistic board but completely hyped players. Bremen had a monstrous second stage but all in all a rather disappointing season with ups and downs. My star players are demanding Europe, my youth want the squad and their focus to remain and the weaker ones want a quiet, stable season. Meanwhile the board has slight hopes for Europe but doesn't have it as a must-have Düsseldorf was the best, weirdest case. They were relegated from the Bundesliga with a very good second league team. Yet at winter's break they were 17th and everything was breaking down. When I took them over, I got 46 points on the second stage to get promoted after all. My nominally first league team should have good chances to stay in with one or two new faces. Yet the players explicitly said they felt overwhelmed by the last coach and right now just want to play ball. The board likewise wanted to have a good shot at staying in but nothing more as it *is* an uphill battle and the club is being build up again. Wolfsburg secured a narrow Champions League place in the last two weeks (after fearing missing out before) and made second place in the cup. The players are happy with the CL and want more, while the board is willing to accept all three options with a bias towards Europe. In 17 the board very quickly believed the hype while players were just yay or nay. Especially Bremen and Düsseldorf however really surprised me with the many different options and demands and callbacks to past experiences /edit: My only complaint regarding training: I want to see which module is trained by which coach. Both for optimisation and for better handling the 'player unhappy about too much [x] training' message.
  8. Can you say what exactly these teams do to give you problems? Are they just defensively too strong? Are they too quickly overrunning your defense? Are they a wall with long shots? There are many ways a 442 can be played with many different strengths and weaknesses. What I usually do against mid-table 442s: I look at the middle four and what to exploit. Do they have an offensive runner in the MC slots? In that case I focus on this side. Do they play full wingplay? In that case one winger and the opposite offensive CM man-mark the fullbacks while the free winger looks to exploits the space left by their attacks. Do they just use the two lines as walls? Use the strikers to harass the defenders while the B2B run between the lines for long shots and the AP actively nests in the space between. One general key is to exploit the spaces in the DM and AM slots. Quickly passing from the deep midfield to the more advanced line between/above/through the middle four quickly tears these formations apart unless they are full defensive. For my overload my usual offensive side looks like this: Shorter passing, lower tempo. FBa, RGs, DLPs (on the outer MC slot) and either an APs or IFa on the offensive flank. My three more defensive players usually have an overweight in the buildup phase and can create the time for the advance players to get in position. If they are pressed, the opponent is so far forwards my two creative players can easily pass to my attacking players.
  9. I actually had that situation yesterday. My second division German team that miraculously won the cup and got promoted but had too little budget to buy players for the top faced off against United in the first Europa League playoff round (after outcountering some midclass teams in the group) Let's just say it was a game of dice. I caught them by surprise at home, drewing 1-1 with a cautious flat 4141 with a halfback. Me, being stupid, then forgot how away goals worked and played a highly destructive 352 (with 5 in the DM line) with direct counters and balls to my bull up front. United had almost 50 shots but around 40 were under pressure from afar. They still scored (a dumb penalty) but in the 94th minute a counter worked well enough for a distant shot of my own. I then won on penalties with nothing but pure luck. After saving that win like a million times, I then reloaded the pre-match state and experimented that specific matchup again and again with different formations. My first three ideas were: The 4141 from the first game, the wall from the second, and a more spread out counter. Cautious 4141 flat (Halfback, 2*BBM, 2*Wa) Away from home Manchester clobbered me. Winning on average by two or three goals with little chances from my team. I did not win once and tied 9 times. However, this formation got me into extra time relatively often (i.e. 6 out of 40). Out of those half got into penalties I conceivably could have won had I used the fitting match preparation. Only once did I score more than once, the game I lost 8-2 because United overcommited. But one goal was always a possibility. Defensive 352 (2*WBs, 2*DMs, 1*DLPs) route one Very volatile. I had 11(!) scoreless games and 8 more decided by single stray longshots or dumb penalties. Otherwise? Often I went down by four or five goals. In 40 games I only scored 5. Thankfully my official save was one of them. The shotcard usually read something like 47-4 Defensive 451 (1*DMd, 1*SVs, 1*WPs, 1*IWa, 1*APs) fluid counter It worked almost too well! I won the first three matches 1-0, 2-1 and 1-0 and even in the losses had my chances. United obviously always had the individual class to outplay me so they too had their chances. But my defense had a good mix and their mentality allowed them to retain the ball to really frustrate United I would rate 29 games as 'competitive' with an additional 4 being total flukes. Key was: Putting the SVs on the Pogba side to close him down. Either he passes instead of shooting dangerously or he dribbles past, right into my DMds sphere of influence. From these results I gathered the following elements for additional tests: Walling is a pure gamble. It can work but when it doesn't the game is a catastrophe. A relatively low defensive line but with an active first pressing line is frustrating for the opponent and forces him to either take risks or to take the bad kind of long shots. A packed and comparatively spread out midfield can keep the ball out of the opponents' feet. If there are options and some pace exists, counters are deadly. Also, pure strength or pure speed won't work — top teams have them as well I then did short test with comparable systems. 3412, a low 4231, a low 4321 (both tree and wings). What I realised: Fluid counters with two DM (one static, one runner) are really, really good as an underdog that has some quality. This DM setup brings in a lot of stability and forces the opponent to either commit (and thus opening up the front players) or to do uncontrolled long shots. If they go all in, there are plenty of attackers up front to pass to while a sizeable bunch still gives stability. It is not famcy but if one can play fancy against United there are plenty more options to cjoose from anyway Mind the flanks. Like said in a post above, a strong defense can get away with narrowness. But every top team is different. If they only have fullbacks for width, one trick of mine is to manmark them with some offensive players (or more offensive midfielders) while going narrower. They are pressured and delayed and the centre is more secure. But many also double up on the flanks and then cut inside or do these disgusting backwards passes to long shooters. Against those it also is somewhat recommended to double up because they can create a lot of chaos otherwise or slowly pick your lines apart. But there are no guarantees. While the game is more competitive, there is still a big quality gap that more often than not will shine through. And, if United gets a second Pogba, the holder DM side is a security risk. If the runner has low work rate, bad pressing or tackling attributes or is a lazy bum, the defense breaks apart. If the CD are low mentals, look forward to set pieces breaking you apart.
  10. I grew to like midseason careers. Holiday to December and take over the first underperforming club at the bottom who releases their manager. Normally half their players are unhappy or demand playing time, stars are being stalked, and generally it is just a mess. Usually you have two or three games (but four to five are ideal) for immediate impact where you have to use the squad as given. Then you have a transfer period with limited budget except for spares or what you sell. This mode really forces you to face the dynamics section as it already starts a mess. It starts at a disadvantage and is a good mix between using the club and transforming it. And the first full season also has new things to offer as the clubs usually missed their targets by miles, resulting in reduced budgets but with board/players still demanding the old success. All while the young or good players get offer after offer. Anpther mode I experimenting with is essentially roleplaying a manager. Currently going all Magath. Extreme physical training, changing the entire squad every two seasons and buying a lot (and I mean a lot!) players on the chance they fit. Going all understatement to the press while pushing the players to the max and refusing any concession in private talks. There are no Team Leaders or Influencers but me! Who can complain can run! Things I have planned for the midseason update: A Bilbao save but starting with low facilities and their B or C team in the lower leagues. Another MLS save because they are always interesting.
  11. Playing in Germany: The (non-selected) leagues are almost perfect from the looks of it. There are some teams (City, mostly) who go too far though and buy two or three 80m players a window. Otherwise a few big transfers, a lot of backup shuffling and youth speculation. However, the German leagues are sometimes turning unrealistically bonkers. Bayern is too aggressive on the market, especially for unproven players or old veterans. While the 30-45m offers are normality by now, it is very rare to see them get three or more players at once. Or them competing eye-to-eye with England and Madrid/Barca when it comes to big transfers. Traditionally the league is pretty conservative financially. Bayern and Wolfsburg sometimes go big. Leipzig speculates. Maybe Dortmund. Otherwise we just now got to the point mid-level teams spend >10-15m for starters and often those still get a lot of pressure for it. Early on this is somehow well done early on but later on we get to the point 20, 30, sometimes even 40 get thrown around like it is nothing once a team gets 'new' money. Sadly this takrs away quite a bit of the league's character. It is a lot better than 17 but it still can escalate somewhat.
  12. How does the game look and is there some way you want it to look? Just from looking, I guess your wingbacks get involved a lot in the final third and take control? In general terms my formation and thoughts are here but that is specifically about my current team and my patient central play.
  13. Piperita

    Best youth team?

    On the higher end of your reputation barrier (7050) but Werder Bremen has quite some good and (almost) ready talents. With negative PA: Johannes Eggestein (20), Striker — Relatively well-rounded. Starts as DLF (train Strength) or AF (train Pace). Highlights are impressive values for Finishing, First Touch, Teamwork, Work Rate and Anticipation. Lowlights are low Strenfth, Pace and Jumping Reach. Jean-Manuel Mbom (18), CM/DM — DLP, Mezzala and AP are his starting positions. Well-rounded for his age and can develop into almost any role if the PA gods were nice with their rolls. Concentration and both movements start a bit on the low side but that often is acceptable once he returns from loan in the second season. Otherwise a good build with the Dictatates Tempo PPM which makes me retrain him to Regista quite often. Josh Sargent (18), Striker — Starts as Poacher but besides F9, Trequartista and CF he plays everything at an acceptable level. Like most Bremen youngsters he lacks somewhat in speed but is instead a hard worker with good mentals (15,13,14, 13, 10,11). He also has great movement and First Touch/Finishing. Luca Plogmann (18), Sweeper Keeper — Needs a bit longer than the others but with good luck he'll be worth it! With defined PA Maximilian Eggestein (21), Central Midfield — Really good and enduring passer with well-rounded mental stats. Starts as Box to Box but his low speed maxes it a dangerous position. Can turn into a really good DLP or Ap (although his Flair starts low). Team Work, Stamina and Work Rate are world class, Fitness is close. Anticipation, First Touch, Technique and Composure are other highlights with Vision and Passing also having good values. However, he is almost comically slow for a Bundesliga midfielder. 19 months in and except Plogmann all are regulars for me. They also start with a 22 year old BPD with good potential and a 20 uear old Rifht back. Those two are not quite as exciting but with good training or at full power they still are in the upper regions of the league.
  14. I had some experiences in 17 with my Wolfsburg side. Similarly to you, I used two wide BWM because such a tight midfield is perfect for pressing the opponent. For the defense I then used Offside Traps and high lines to put the fight on foreign terrain. What I see in your formation: You have no finishing player in your lineup and play a rather slow game which probably results in handball maneuvres around the penalty area. Your front players are mostly about pressing and passing and thus will try to carry the ball in or looking for better positioned teammates. It can work but I guess only with very specific players or a vastly superior team. My front lineup back then was: AP(s)-SS(a)—DLF(a). The AP was the front distributor for the attackers who targeted the goal from different areas and also had a good chemistry together. On high lines the DLF could run through, fed by those two behind him. On lower lines he keeps them in place while the SS gains long shot opportunities. It is hard defending against both. For such a slow game you plan, there are also two things you could consider: The MC line. Giving everyone the Stops Play PPM or even the Dictates Tempo one helps keep the game in your hands while the front three (or the other wide player) get in position. Particularly for BWM these traits can be gold: They are too strong to easily dispossess and without the ball fight for it again and again. Once the ball is securely up front, there is also some nice new speed from the attackers. Another school of though would be giving the AP all these liberties but that would go against your base idea of keeping the ball and waiting for the right moment to strike. The fullbacks. I have had two roles I had success with: CWB(s) and FB(a). The former brings aggression and width on the upper wings, widening your attacks and bringing in plenty of crosses. Particularly with play-stopping MC they really bring some new options as they run through the flank while the BWM absorbs pressure. When caught up front are often in positions to really uphold the high pressing. The latter are more conservative in attack but are defensively more solid. Before the final sprint they often stay between the two midfield lines and give more options for retention and passing plays into the box, only going the full length at the end. As for the MC, you can experiment a lot with what works best. I had a third BWM but on defend duty. Once I also had a DLP but artificially turned into being more Regista like. There also is your CM(d).
  15. As a countering player, I had seen a few things in my seasons. Headers are as good as never classified as ccc. Whether the striker is alone in the area or heads untouched from two yards, it is just a shot. Similarly, the vast majority of woodwork also counts just as such. Sure, it was a close thing but not a ccc. Leading to weird press conferences and team talks where I have to defend my seven woodwork game with five close-range headers against an opponent who had one penalty and two volleys after set pieces. When players go one-on-one with the keeper, it only counts as ccc when the shot happens centrally. Then it does not matter whether it comes from five yards or just outside the box. Out of the half spaces, it is usually 'just' a half chance unless the attacker gets past the goalkeeper before shooting or a mistake lead to the finish. Similar goes for shots inside (or just outside) the box: Centrally it usually is a ccc, half space a half chance. Penalties are always a ccc, as far as I can see untouched free kicks never.