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  1. 4-2-3-1 Wide Inspired by mourinho.fmf Gk: D FB(s). CD(d) CD(d) FB(s) DLP(d). BBM(s) W(s) AM(s). IF(s) CF(a) Teamshape ; Structured Mentality; Control on weaker teams or same level , counter on stronger or leave on standard Team instructions; lower tempo, get stuck in, prevent goalkeeper distribution, normal defensive line , fairly narrow ,shorter passing , exploit the middle , be disciplined, mark tighter, sometimes. Player instructions; FBs:- Manchester United full backs sit narrow with the center backs while defending ,they also help with build up and bumming up all the time they mostly hold position in deeper areas but as the role details..they intelligently pick there moment to go forward ....PI: sit narrower , hold position, sometimes,let them decide the rest . CDs: Defaults....once they can't do there jobs tell them to f@#k out , honestly they don't do much. DLP(d)- Close down much more, mark tighter ..the sole purpose of his signing is his defensive organization and orchestration from the back and preventing counter attacks . BBM(s)- Close down much more ,mark tighter..in fm18 he is a complete player with no flaw's, defense and offense...I trained Tom Davies for this position mostly for his work rate and long shots in the game...they do the most running. W(s)- this dude bagged up the assists for me with 27 assists in a season..it was Walcott .😀 PI: close down much more , mark tighter AM(s)- close down much more ,mark tighter ....bags in some goals and assists..his the main pass to assist guy. IF(s)- close down much more, mark tighter....leave the others ,man utd let their forwards play freely CF(a)- close down much more ...your main goal scorer , Everton's tosun and Calvert lewin bagged me 31 and 30 respectively ..I didn't know who to pick for first choice. Man utd played with a low tempo and where very defensively solid with attacking players rising to the occasion. I think adding more instructions to PI will reduce the dynamic and unpredictability of the team, we have the likes of Valencia and Ashley young who cut in or go wide ,making them unpredictable even Alexis Sanchez of recent with freedom and creativity . I used the tactic on Everton in my recent save and achieved beauty, being the 3rd highest goal scoring team in the league , PFA player of the year Walcott 😀, 2 of my strikers came 2rd and 3rd in EPL highest goal scorers respectively, won the Europa league with easy against top clubs ... should have achieved more but had injury crisisand i started using the tactic mid season was struggling at the bottom half with my other failed trail and error tactic. You should really try this it works like a charm..ohh when proctecting your lead move defense line deeper...I'm really new to this sooo forgive my article write up. First certainly not the last..... Don't forget it was inspired from Manchester United on how they play in the fm18 ME due to there dominace in the league ,cups and champions league ... surprisingly tho😂 Welcome tests and criticism..go easy
  2. Hi all, I’ve been a long time reader of this forum and looking to get more involved in tactical discussions. In doing reading on the forum I’ve managed to get a lot greater understanding about tactical settings and how things work and I think I’ve been able to definitely simplify things to understand how it all works. Hoping to have a bit of a discussion here about something I’ve been encountering on one of my saves lately. I’ll give a bit of background first. I’m playing as Leverkusen in a Pentagon save on FM17. I’m about 10 seasons in so none of my players will be familiar to anyone so will dispense with all the discussions around them unless required. I’m currently working with 3 tactics, all of them designed to play to my strengths or a specific play style: A 4-4-2 narrow diamond to play with my good strikers and talented central midfielders, a flat 4-4-2 with fast wingers, and a defensive 4-1-2-3 (aka 4-5-1 DM) when I’m trying to play a low-risk style of game against strong oppositions. It’s this last tactic that I’ve had trouble using. This is the tactic, and the style of play I’m trying to achieve: In Defence: - Defend with a medium-low block as my defenders are quite quick but good in the air so can cope with a bit of space in behind. Normally I defend on higher mentality tactics with a medium-high block. - Bank of 4 defenders with a CDM screen to have players behind the ball. - Close down a normal for the Defensive mentality; players won’t get pulled out of position and keep their structure. - All midfield trio get involved defensively due to support/defend duties. In Attack: - DLFs drops deep to link midfield when in possession, before moving into box late to become a goalscoring threat - IFa’s are main goalscoring threat, cutting inside onto stronger foot and with strong goalscoring skills (repurposed strikers) - APs pulls strings as the team’s playmaker from midfield strata. - BBM moves between lines to support midfield and attackers - FBs’s overlap a bit, but not too much to be caught out on the counter attack I’m one of the better teams in the league having finished 2nd last season and 3rd the season before, and there’s about a group of 5-6 of us who are on about the same level. I only tend to use this tactic in away games against the bigger sides, but find that they tend to flatten me. I’ll admit I haven’t done an in-depth analysis on specific games as some of the folks on the forum do, mostly because of time constraints in my normal life. But anecdotally I tend to concede multiple goals, have fewer attacking chances, and have lower possession in a tactic that is designed to be reasonably cautious and with a formation designed for defensive stability. Some of this I put down to the top-level regens in this game often being a bit stronger than players at the start of the game (Schalke’s striker is probably the best striker I’ve ever seen in FM), as well as playing against strong teams on their home turf. But it’s not because these teams are better than mine on the whole; last season I lost 4-0 away to Dortmund (eventual champions) using the 4-5-1 DM in the league and then later in the week beat them 8-3 at home in the cup (they scored 2 consolation goals) when we both used identical players and my only change was to my more comfortable narrow 4-4-2 diamond. But in general has anyone had similar issues using lower mentality tactics? I’m fully aware that the tactic is not going to be one to blow teams away but in using it I’m trying to be a good, compact defensive side but end up being hammered in most of these games I might play a few more games with it over the next few days (coming into a new season on the save) against some lower class teams and see how it goes and post my results. If anyone has any advice or discussion about this that would be great as well. TL;DR: I’ve tried to build a tactic that is defensively sound, but find myself getting beaten easily by similar strength teams with less possession and more opposition chances. Wanting to see if anyone has had the same issue and have a discussion about it.
  3. Hi people, I'm new here. I've got somewhat "obsessed" with the issue of Team Shape. I've read a number of useful posts and articles and I now understand that, in general, more fluid shapes offer more compactness due to relatively less differences in players' mentalities, while the opposite is true for more structured systems. I also understand that even within a more structured system you can still make the team be more compact by using formations in which players are deployed in at least three successive strata (i.e. defense, defensive midfield and midfield), as well as by appropriately assigning roles and duties to the players. Now, let's imagine, purely hypothetically, that I simply have to use the 4-4-2 flat formation because I don't have (enough) players who can occupy DM or WB positions. My team is playing against a far stronger opponent, so I logically choose the Defensive Team Mentality. My primary goal is not to concede (rather than to score). I want my players to sit back as much as possible and defend as a compact unit. But in a flat 4-4-2 combined with a more structured system, even if I put all my four midfielders on Defend duty, the team still wouldn't be compact enough and there will be the space between the defensive and midfield lines that the opposition could exploit - something I certainly want to avoid. And so I decide to switch to a more fluid shape. Now I have the compactness, but on the other hand, my players are given too much creative freedom, and the problem is that they are neither tactically (mentally) nor technically proficient enough for such a style of play. Consequently, I go to Team Instructions and select the Be More Disciplined instruction (plus, optionally, Stick to Positions) in order to reduce the players' overall tendency to be more "creative" than I want them to be. Therefore, we now have this situation: Team Mentality - Defensive Formation - 4-4-2 flat Team Shape - (very) Fluid + Be More Disciplined (and, perhaps, Stick to Positions) My question is: to what extent the Be More Disciplined TI would affect/reduce the players' creative freedom in a more fluid system? Has anyone of you tried to play this way, and if yes, how did it work? Thanks everybody in advance
  4. Leganés 16/17 battle for survival: A Showcase of Reactive Anti-football It's June 2016 and Club Deportivo Leganés, a relatively small football club from the southern outskirts of Madrid, have just been promoted to La Liga for the first time. Expectations for the season are direct and brutal relegation. The board demands we put up a fight so we can relegate with our heads held high. Coming into the season half the squad is on loan without option to buy. The transfer budget depends on how the owners bitcoins are doing at the moment. The B team consists of amateurs who play in a competition nobody knows exists, in fact they might just go to a pub every Saturday for all we know. When someone asked about the youth setup there is a distinct lack of response. It's the perfect place for heroism and building a story to be told many years from now. Realistically, it's the perfect place for loss and despair. It's time for some good old Anti-Football! In this thread I will detail how I approach this relegation battle. First I'll quickly show how I build a system that suits the squad and our specific challenge. Later I will post updates on specific matches going through my opposition scouting, building a match plan and changes I make during the game. The Core Squad Serrantes is a solid goalkeeper with good reflexes and no holes in his game. Owned by the club and 27 years old. Tito is a very experienced rightback and a great teamplayer. He doesn't have the speed or technical ability to be top class but makes is still a good player due to his football intelligence. Victor Diaz is a decent rightback who lacks pace and technical ability. He is defensively solid if not asked to cover too much ground and a decent rotation option for Tito. Martin Mantovani the club captain and experienced centerback. A great leader and solid defender who lacks a bit of pace and isn't great on the ball. Pablo Insua is a fairly young but solid centerback who only needs to improve his marking and acceleration to become a complete defender. Dimitris Siovis is a left footed ball playing centerback. Not as good defensively as Mantovani and Insua and also lacks pace but has a great pass and is good in the air. Diego Rico is a hard working leftback with great speed and strength but desperately lacking in acceleration, agility, key mental attributes and tackling. Adrian Marin is a talented leftback who has everything to become a great La Liga leftback in the future apart from determination which he plainly doesn't have. Gabriel is a very well rounded central midfielder with a great pass. The 23 yr old Brazilian lacks a bit in physicality to be a great central midfielder but is easily a first choice for our squad. Ruben Perez is another complete central midfielder with more strength and stamina than Gabriel. He lacks the tackling ability to be a great defensive midfielder and the passing and vision to be a great playmaker. David Timor is a strong central midfielder with a great pass. Not intelligent enough defensively to be a mainstay in our central midfield but a good option if we want more creativity in the center. Nabil El Zhar is an experienced right footed winger who still has good pace and a good cross. He has great flair, technique and movement off the ball which makes him our first choice on the right wing. Alexander Szymanowski is a technically gifted left footed winger who has good ball control and passing ability. He lacks the pace to be an explosive winger but makes up for it with skill and creativity. Omar is an agile left footed winger who combines speed with technical ability but lacks the mental attributes and strength to be a first choice winger. Robert is a right footed winger with great acceleration but lacking the pace to back it up. Decent technical ability but sub-par vision make him a decent backup but not much more. Alberto Bueno is a technically gifted forward with vision and flair. He lacks the strength, reach and workrate to be a complete forward but is a real threat both dropping deep to receive the ball in space and when running in behind the defensive line. Luciano is a pacey forward with decent technical and mental ability. His speed is the only edge he has over defenders so unless there is space to use he isn't much of a threat. Mikel Angel Guerrero is a strong and hard working forward who lacks the height to be a real target man and the technical ability to be a threat from deeper positions. He makes up for it through teamwork and dedication which makes him a useful rotation option. Darwin Machis is a fast forward who likes to take first time shots. Highly determined and hard working but held back technical and mental abilities like his first touch, technique, decision making and anticipation. He is a surprisingly good backup. Squad Summary Slow defenders. Good passers in midfield but lacking a classical ball winner. Decent wingers with speed and some technical ability. Two fast strikers and two strikers who can provide good link play. Tactical Setup I want to build a team that plays combative, hard working and direct football. We will defend with a disciplined low/mid block, men behind the ball and hard tackling. We will attack with direct passes to players who work hard to use the space available to us. I will adapt my setup to the opponents threats and to take advantage of vulnerabilities when possible. The 4-4-2 is a great defensive setup as shown by the likes of Atlético de Madrid. The counter mentality provides the defensive approach and low defensive line. A slightly higher line is used along with forwards instructed to track back to compress space. Direct passing to transition faster and use the pace we have on the wings and up front. Get stuck in to put bodies on the line, fight for those points and hopefully create the occasional break. The forwards will be instructed to track the opponents midfielders to create a 4-4-2-0 defensive shape. This will restrict our counter opportunities but screening the two central midfielders is vital for defensive stability. If the forwards don't track back into midfield positions most La Liga teams will be able to easily pass through the center and exploit the space in front of our central defenders. I do have the option to leave the poacher free from defensive duties if I think I can get away with it and want to try and get him in behind the defensive line on the transition. The poacher is instructed to run into the channels and the DLF to roam from position. The wide midfielders will either be played as an attacking winger or wide midfielder to try and get in behind the fullbacks or as supporting wingers or wide midfielders to try and use the half space to create chances and provide more defensive stability during transitions. Supporting wide midfielders will often be instructed to roam from position or sit narrow to make them available for passes in space or free up space for advancing fullbacks. The central midfielders are always set up as a defend/support pair with the midfielder on support allowed to roam from position. If one of the wingers plays more advanced I play the supporting central midfielder on the same side so he can use the space vacated by the advanced winger to link play. The fullbacks will play defensive against fast wingers who try to get in behind the defensive line, supporting against wide players who try to create from deeper positions and attacking if I feel I can get away with it or need the extra attacking option. The Goal My aim is to cause some kind of upset somewhere. Either an unlikely challenge for Europa spots, a semi final or deeper cup run or beating the top teams and securing a top half league finish. Meanwhile I'll be showing my approach to this type of challenge which hopefully adds a different perspective to the forum. What to expect? I will occasionally update this thread with match reports consisting of pre match scouting, the game plan, how the game played out, changes I made during the game and a post match analysis. First up is the opening game away against fellow relegation candidate Real Sporting Gijón. The next game is Real Madrid at home which I'll obviously make a post on and from there I'll pick some important or interesting games throughout the season.
  5. The Aim Inspired by people like @Mr U Rosler I wanted to create a realistic tactic that met the following, in order of importance: - Defensively solid - Realistic shape - Different types of goals scored - Players breaking from deep - Goals and assists spread through the team If you want a tactic that is going to try and 'game' the ME, play with 3 central strikers and win games 7-4 then move along because you're in the wrong place. If you want to be solid defensively and enjoy a 1-0, then read on The Tactic This has been a work in progress since the game released and as mentioned I've taken a lot of inspiration from others. Shout out to @Mr U Rosler, @burnum and others trying to create realistic tactics. The basic shape with TI's and player roles is shown here: - I don't use OI's at all - The only additional PI's I'm using are 'shoot less often' on every single player The Results Here is a screenshot of results since using the final tactic: As you can see we are absolutely rock solid defensively. I'm so pleased with the team shape defensively. We don't score massive amounts of goals but when you keep this number of clean sheets, it almost doesn't matter. We have only conceded 2 goals once and that was with a completely rotated team in an EL game against Sporting. The 0-1 loss against Everton was incredibly unlucky. We dominated the game and had a goal disallowed, they scored a late goal from a corner to win it - just one of those things. We have played Chelsea 3 times so far, and conceded 1 goal in over 270 minutes of football. The League Table Here is a screenshot of the league table around the halfway stage: 6 goals conceded in 18 games The Stats Here is a screenshot of my player stats, as you can see goals and assists are nicely spread throughout the team. Really pleased with this. Misc Notes - The BWM(d) will never get great ratings. I'm not worried about this because he does his job on the pitch. - The CF(s) sometimes has off days and isn't going to score 40 goal a season. he often plays the role of decoy or creator. - The only real weakness is the ball over the top. I have weighed this up against the benefits of playing a higher line and offside trap and it's a calculated risk. - Training. I do Team Cohesion and Match Tactics until they are significantly high at which point I switch to Balanced and, you guessed it, Defensive Positioning Caveats - For consistency, all my tests while coming up with this tactic have been with Arsenal. I do not know if this will work with lower teams, or even ANY other teams. All I know is it works with this Arsenal side I've assembled. I welcome feedback from anyone else. - Because I'm happy with the tactic in my long term save, I'm probably not going to provide updates and tweaks to this tactic as others do. I just offer it 'as is' and welcome other people to tweak and feedback if they would like to. I hope it offers people a platform to build on to create defensively solid teams. Download 1-0 to the Arsenal.fmf
  6. Hello! In my Fulham save I've just come up against a Defensive 4-2-2-2 FM for the first time when playing Birmingham. My data analyst suggested they'd likely play a 4-4-2 as they'd done so for 870 minutes (I'm only 8 games into the season) and as we were comfortable favourites I expected a good result. I told the lads to go out and prove the pundits right, which appeared to get them fired up, but then it all fell apart because Birmingham turned up in a Defensive 4-2-2-2 DM, we were unable to penetrate them regularly, and even when we did we wasted the chances. The team became a mixture of frustrated, furious, and nervous despite being again "fired up" at half time, and we ended up losing 0-1 to pretty much their only chance. What I'd like to know is what could I have done to break down Birmingham and ultimately beat them? I play a short passing, possession based tactic based on Cleon's thread, and up until now it's been working really quite well. It's always been difficult to break down the lesser teams but we'd usually still end up with a good result through perseverance and by dominating the other team. Here's how the two teams lined up... F9(S) IF(S) AP(S) BBM(S) RPM(S) DM(D) FB(S) CD(D) CB(D) FB(A) GK(D) I'm only using 6 TI's: Retain Possession, Play Out of Defence, Float Crosses, Roam From Positions, Lower Tempo, Close Down Much More. Floating Crosses was new for this game, as up until now my full backs have an absolutely dire cross completion with my right FB at 4/50, and my left FB 2/10. And here are the match stats... If anyone's interested you can find the .pkm here. You can also find my tactic here if you'd like a closer look. Any help or advice on what I could have done to change the outcome of this game will be greatly appreciated as it's something I'd very much like to learn from and apply going forward. -Mic
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