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wwfan

The Barcelona Style: My Interpretation

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I'm using 4-2-3-1 with radically tweak of course :)

And now my concern is the tactic very easy conceded from counter.

Vs Man U, I've got 60% possession, equally CCC (2 each), and Joe Allen got outstanding 85 pass. But I've lost 2-0 all from counter. Any suggest about that?

Could you tell something about your tweaks or even post your tactic? I tried different tweaks but still can't achieve as many passes on the opposition side of the pitch.

Yes, counters are very effective in FM 12. If you are playing with high D-line, you can play offside. But if the opposition has fast and skillful strikers may be it is better to play with a deeper D-line. And of course heavy pressing from your attackers and midfielders is required.

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Could you tell something about your tweaks or even post your tactic? I tried different tweaks but still can't achieve as many passes on the opposition side of the pitch.

Yes, counters are very effective in FM 12. If you are playing with high D-line, you can play offside. But if the opposition has fast and skillful strikers may be it is better to play with a deeper D-line. And of course heavy pressing from your attackers and midfielders is required.

Check your PM.

And let me know what progress you make ;)

Hmmm play possession always good with high pressing I think. Need to be careful with closing down setting as my Swansea players attribute not too good.

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Check your PM.

And let me know what progress you make ;)

Hmmm play possession always good with high pressing I think. Need to be careful with closing down setting as my Swansea players attribute not too good.

Thanks, I'll write my impressions after I play several games.

I think Barca pressing style is almost perfect. Two or three players press heavily the player with the ball while others cover all possible passing aims. It's impossible to recreate such pressing in FM but heavy pressure instruction for your strikers and tight marking for all others works well. Still counters are considerable threat.

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How would you suggest dominating possession against very good sides, most especially away from home?

Be a very good side yourself.

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Nice article, but I don't think that todays Barca under Pep have changed football. People like Michels, Cruyff... changed football. All these characteristics like possession football, building from the back, high closing down, attacking fullbacks etc. have been viable for decades. And Barca have been playing like that for many years (Cruyff, Van Gaal, Rexach, Rijkaard), just not everytime with so much success. Pep is the Cruyff's successor inspired by Bielsa.

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True, but the fact that Barca have brought such success with this style of football should help break down some of the previously universally-believed mistruths in football.

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The problems extend much further than English football. In fact, I'd argue these thoughts are spread throughout most of Europe.

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In fact, I'd argue these thoughts are spread throughout most of Europe.

Unfortunately. Yes, you're probably right, but I think these thoughts were exported from England as many teams in Europe tried to copy PL teams. Now many teams will try to copy Barca, it's natural.

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I finally got my hands on and read Johnathan Wilson's 'Inverting the Pyramid'. If he brought out a revised, updated edition it would have to have a chapter on how Barcelona have changed the perception of tactics in the last decade.

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http://community.sigames.com/showthread.php/277153-Barcelona-style-in-FM-2012/page3

I've just uploaded a link for my attempt. If you see some screen shots I posted, I've had some good results.

One game 150 passes from Xavi and 149 from Abidal (same game) Total passes was over 700.

It's called V-Twin, have a go and see if you can make it even better. I'm working on a newer version already.

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Can someone give me the right informations about barca players (every single player ) indivual settings like long shot run with ball etc pls ?

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Can someone give me the right informations about barca players (every single player ) indivual settings like long shot run with ball etc pls ?

If there is no detail on it, then I'd assume it's all just left on the default settings.

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Can someone give me the right informations about barca players (every single player ) indivual settings like long shot run with ball etc pls ?

Read the opening post of the thread and all the info is there. Seeing as it was created using the tactics creator then all settings will be the default role ones unless stated otherwise.

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arca second season, who to buy/sell?

After winning the double with barca, losing on pens to city on champo league final, I just wanna Improve my team, a few days after losing in the final man city offer 40,5mil for dani alves In which I accepted, using these funds I signed ceaser aspilicueta and sakho, I use a 4-3-3 tactic which involves 2 center mids and 2 wingers. And a cam, I've just finished my first season and Im in friendlies, I have about 50mil to spend I don't know where I can improve with squad, with a usual line up of. Valdes, jordi alba, Azaplilcueta as fullbacks, piqué and sakho as center Halfs, iniesta and xavi cm, wingers villa and messi, cam fabregas, and cavani striker, this team has a lot of rotation especially otamendi, thiamin, macro verati, and others? Suggest then? Fire Away

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arca second season, who to buy/sell?

After winning the double with barca, losing on pens to city on champo league final, I just wanna Improve my team, a few days after losing in the final man city offer 40,5mil for dani alves In which I accepted, using these funds I signed ceaser aspilicueta and sakho, I use a 4-3-3 tactic which involves 2 center mids and 2 wingers. And a cam, I've just finished my first season and Im in friendlies, I have about 50mil to spend I don't know where I can improve with squad, with a usual line up of. Valdes, jordi alba, Azaplilcueta as fullbacks, piqué and sakho as center Halfs, iniesta and xavi cm, wingers villa and messi, cam fabregas, and cavani striker, this team has a lot of rotation especially otamendi, thiamin, macro verati, and others? Suggest then? Fire Away

Wrong forum, for all discussions about transfers etc use the Good Player and Team Guide forum :)

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arca second season, who to buy/sell?

After winning the double with barca, losing on pens to city on champo league final, I just wanna Improve my team, a few days after losing in the final man city offer 40,5mil for dani alves In which I accepted, using these funds I signed ceaser aspilicueta and sakho, I use a 4-3-3 tactic which involves 2 center mids and 2 wingers. And a cam, I've just finished my first season and Im in friendlies, I have about 50mil to spend I don't know where I can improve with squad, with a usual line up of. Valdes, jordi alba, Azaplilcueta as fullbacks, piqué and sakho as center Halfs, iniesta and xavi cm, wingers villa and messi, cam fabregas, and cavani striker, this team has a lot of rotation especially otamendi, thiamin, macro verati, and others? Suggest then? Fire Away

As I point out in the thread:

I'm managing Arsenal in 2030, not contemporary Barca.

Asking me for advice on who to buy is a waste of your writing time.

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Right guys, in 3rd season & puyol is beginning to get a bit slow & old so need a young replacement.

Also, got no left back atm as alba & abidal are out injured & dodo is loaned out without a call back clause.

Any advice guys?

Cheers

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Right guys, in 3rd season & puyol is beginning to get a bit slow & old so need a young replacement.

Also, got no left back atm as alba & abidal are out injured & dodo is loaned out without a call back clause.

Any advice guys?

Cheers

As mentioned, this isn't the best place to ask. You'll get far more joy in the Good Player forum or in General.

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This is working well in FM13.

Came 4th in the league with Newcastle, home form was amazing (W15 D3 L1) and plays some nice looking football too.

Away form was hit and miss though (W6 D8 L5), any reason for this or are there any changes you would suggest wwfan?

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I haven't tried this in FM13 because I'm I've been playing in the BSP. Not an ideal system for less than technical players. To try and make it more solid away, it might be worth using the Defend strategy against the bigger teams (assuming they are the ones you are losing to). Changes in the TC have made Defend a little more like Counter, so it wouldn't be a huge change. Certainly worth experimenting with.

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I will be trying this approach to only I will be playing an advanced forward to try and stretch the opposition and my wingbacks is on support duty to keep a bit of control. I havn´t quite decided which MC will be the playmaker. I think the DLP works best so far. I hope to be able to produce as impressive results as you guys :) Struggeling to keep posession high. Maube the quality of my Fulham team...

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Tried this last night, beat Man Utd away 3-1 so not too bad, although they had more possesion the goals I scored were good.

Also donlt have my fullbacks on attacking just support, my team isn't quite Barcelona level yet so it will be interesting how it develops.

Any ideas on defensive line, temp and time wasting settings or just leave them default?

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Tried this last night, beat Man Utd away 3-1 so not too bad, although they had more possesion the goals I scored were good.

Also donlt have my fullbacks on attacking just support, my team isn't quite Barcelona level yet so it will be interesting how it develops.

Any ideas on defensive line, temp and time wasting settings or just leave them default?

They had more possession because their 2 MCs are good at controlling the ball. Man-mark them and see their possession drop.

I don't mess with D-line, tempo and time wasting other than using shouts and choosing a Strategy.

If you want better possession, then change from WB to FB-support. Change DLP-s + AP-s to DLP-d + DLP-s, IF-a to IF-s.

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They had more possession because their 2 MCs are good at controlling the ball. Man-mark them and see their possession drop.

I don't mess with D-line, tempo and time wasting other than using shouts and choosing a Strategy.

If you want better possession, then change from WB to FB-support. Change DLP-s + AP-s to DLP-d + DLP-s, IF-a to IF-s.

I've left all the sliders in the middle position. I'm not too worried about possession, it was Man Utd away and they still have a better squad than me, think they had about 57% so it wasn;t massively dominating, if it gets worse against lesser team I'll look at it.

I use the pre-set shout anyway to push the line up and retain possession.

It's a good idea though about mixing the player mentalities about, dropping them back a little in tough away games like Man Utd should help me recover the ball well in the middle.

From what I noticed the set up of the back four seems very narrow, which allowed more space on the wings than I wanted. Nani got into good positions quite a few times. Man Mark opposition wingers/wide forwards with my fullbacks?

Could someone also explain the 'counter' strategy and the tinking behind this?

From the original post, it's about the defence dropping deeper giving the midfield 3 and the treq space to pass around in and at the same time allowing quick counter attacks? Counter seems a very defensive minded set up though to me.

Could a similar set up be achieved with a deep defensive line, counter attack achieved and a high press or would that see players (particularly defenders) having to run too far to close down.

Also would fluid be an option?

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I've left all the sliders in the middle position. I'm not too worried about possession, it was Man Utd away and they still have a better squad than me, think they had about 57% so it wasn;t massively dominating, if it gets worse against lesser team I'll look at it.

I use the pre-set shout anyway to push the line up and retain possession.

It's a good idea though about mixing the player mentalities about, dropping them back a little in tough away games like Man Utd should help me recover the ball well in the middle.

From what I noticed the set up of the back four seems very narrow, which allowed more space on the wings than I wanted. Nani got into good positions quite a few times. Man Mark opposition wingers/wide forwards with my fullbacks?

Could someone also explain the 'counter' strategy and the tinking behind this?

From the original post, it's about the defence dropping deeper giving the midfield 3 and the treq space to pass around in and at the same time allowing quick counter attacks? Counter seems a very defensive minded set up though to me.

Could a similar set up be achieved with a deep defensive line, counter attack achieved and a high press or would that see players (particularly defenders) having to run too far to close down.

Also would fluid be an option?

I guess you could try man-marking the opposition's wingers with your fullbacks. I haven't tried it yet myself.

The idea behind the "counter" strategy is that it makes the team more patient and possession oriented as it affects tempo, time wasting and mentality. The effect on fatigue from heavy closing down is negated by the slower tempo and higher time wasting.

You can make a Balanced philosophy into a fluid one without actually changing the actually philosophy. You'll just have to set your back 4 + DM on "defend" duties, while your front 5 is with "support" duties. For example:

SK-defend

2WBs-defend

2CDs-defend

DM-defend

AP-support

CM-support

IF-support

IF-support

DLF-support/CF-support

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You can make a Balanced philosophy into a fluid one without actually changing the actually philosophy. You'll just have to set your back 4 + DM on "defend" duties, while your front 5 is with "support" duties. For example:

People often forget that philosophy != mentality framework as it affects closing down and creative freedom with more fluid philosophies allowing more of both. Also, The mentality difference between defensive group and attacking group in fluid philosophy is 4 notches, in balanced philosophy the difference between defend and support duties is 3 notches. So it's not exactly the same thing.

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I've experimented with a different Barca tactic recently (well 2, actually) but it's on the back burner as I have an interesting save going elsewhere. I wanted to create the space in the midfield and I think I managed something, with 3 players (Masch, Busquets and Xavi) getting more than 100 passes in 13 (not possible in 12).

GK (sweeper keeper)

FBR (auto)

CB (defend)

FBL (auto)

DMR (DM, defend)

DML (DLP, defend)

CM (AP, support)

AMR (Treq)

AML (AP, attack)

FR (IF, attack)

FL (IF, attack)

Those forwards are left and right, so wingers, basically, but upfront, so the opposite way round to traditional 4-3-3's. The line up in that order would be Valdes, Alves, Pique, Alba, MAsch, Busquets, Xavi, Messi, Iniesta, Sanchez, Villa.

Creative freedom and attacking intent is set on the sliders on an individual basis, with Xavi set as playmaker and Messi as target man with ball to feet. Most players have creative freedom below 50%, except Messi, who is on max. This way they tend to keep their shape more. Xavi is set a bit higher than others due to his decision making. I haven't managed to get the inside forwards right (something I failed to do with Liverpool too), but the rest seems to operate perfectly. If I'm playing against a stronger team, I can drop Masch into a CB role (limited d, stopper), and Iniesta into a CM role. The IF's, despite being involved well in build up play, generally, do not make the inside runs they should at the right times. I may try upping their CF, but I'm not sure what it will acheive, although as the midfield is the key, I'm sure it will be ok.

It's not provided any huge wins yet, but it has provided goals and good ones and Messi is a real handful from that position: taking up more realistic field positions than with him at the top of the diamond. It would need more work, though.

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After reading some of wwfan's advice in other threads (and some from Cleon too) I have tweaked this tactic.

I've changed strategy to Standard/Rigid

Made the left IF suppport

Made the right WB support

Made the DMC a DLP support

So I line up like this: http://img834.imageshack.us/img834/4189/lineupgp.jpg

The results have been excellent: http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/8467/resultsyo.jpg

Would love to have a version which only has a back 3 (as Guardiola often did) but I can't seem to make it work

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Would love to have a version which only has a back 3 (as Guardiola often did) but I can't seem to make it work

In FM12 I've managed to make a 3-3-4 that really resembled the 3-4-3 Guardiola used, using a 3 sweepers defensive line, but that can't be translated to FM13

This way: http://postimage.org/image/f4yl904rr/

It worked in an insanely good way (also in FM11 and 10, tested by some friends). Scoring 135 goals and conceding just 25. With an average possession over 65%, sometimes over 75%. With both central attackers scoring 37 goals on the league (and around in all competitions), and Messi (or whoever played as center-right attacker) making around 4-8 key passes per match.

Obviously it was made with Barcelona in mind, and needs good players.

An example video of how it worked on the pitch:

[video=youtube;jtdZr-BeyEk]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtdZr-BeyEk

It wasn't really a good match (just the one I played today). Pretty chaotic at times and our attacking football wasn't as fluid as usual. But some players where just coming back from injuries. Anyway, it's enough to see the positioning and and all that.

Now in FM13 I'm working in a 3-4-3 with 1 sweeper and 2 full backs, and I think it can be done. For now I've managed to make it stable (conceding 2 shots per match in the last 4 matches and having over 70% possession in all 4). But I'm still not convinced at all in how the formation attacks.

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I've been promising to write this for a while now, but never had the time to sit down and do it. Wet weather has curtailed my evening plans, so I'll take the chance to do it now.

I got involved in a debate/rant in the GD forum about the 'unrealism' of tactics and the ME. One of the arguments from the side attacking the ME was that if it were realistic, then it would be possible to recreate the Barcelona style of tactic in FM. It was posited that because nobody had successfully done so, then the ME was patently flawed. I disagreed with the premise, arguing that such a tactic should be extremely difficult to get right, as so few teams had ever approached that level in the real world. The user manager would need to have in depth knowledge of tactical theory, know how to translate that into the game, and also have a team full of the right players to get it working. However, I decided to experiment in designing such a tactic. This is the outcome.

Limitations

Before continuing, there is one serious limitation in the ME that prevents the tactic being exactly like the Barcelona tactic, in that defensive midfielders do not have the flexibility to drop between the DCs when the team is in possession. There is also one override required in the TC, namely the choice of Primary Playmaker. However, everything else in the tactic is done through the TC and shouts, with no manual tweaking.

Flawed Interpretations

The biggest problem I had with those trying to design a Barcelona-esque tactic was their insistence that Barcelona played an attacking style of football. Every time I watched them, they played possession football deep on the park, either moving the ball slowly upfield and probing space or attacking at pace if gaps opened up. Both types of play produced goals, the former through the technical brilliance of their midfield, the latter through the pace and directness of their inverted wingers and attacking full backs.

Barcelona: My Interpretation

My interpretation of the Barcelona tactic is that it has a triple-pivot playmaker system, with Xavi, Iniesta and Messi all dictating play from central positions. Xavi is generally the deepest and Messi the highest, although they often are not that far apart. This creative central trio is supported by three defensive players in the DC and DM positions, who provide a stable base of excellent defensive positioning and simple possession passes. Out wide, the inverted wingers angle into the space Messi creates by dropping deep and the full backs surge into the wide spaces behind them.

The tactic operates on the basic principle of controlling space, being high and tight in defence, and low and wide in attack. This is possible because the team are a hard working unit in both defence and attack and technically excellent in keeping the ball. As they keep the ball so well, they can afford to press aggressively in defence without getting tired, even in hot conditions.

Formation, Strategy and Philosophy

4-1-2-2-1 (4-3-3): Flat back four, one DM, two MCs, AML, AMR and FCC.

Counter: My own take on the Barcelona style is that is closest to the Counter Strategy in Football Manager than any other. When Barcelona get the ball, the first thing that happens is the defence drop deeper, opening up passing space between the defence and the playmaking midfield. The Counter Strategy enables this deep move. As mentioned above, they attack in two ways, the slow probe or the fast counter. Again, the Counter strategy allows this.

Balanced: Because their Barcelona get much of their width from the rampaging full backs while keeping the ball deep, the philosophical system that has the biggest differential between the full backs and the defence is the go to. This encourages both the possession play centrally, reducing the risky pass mentality, while allowing FBs on Attack duties to bomb forward at will. Balanced has the biggest mentality gap in these areas, hence it is my choice.

Adjustments

Shorter Passing: Barca play a short passing game. Anything that encourages this is required.

Greater Creative Freedom: You need to give players their head to create chances out of tight spaces, so encouraging creativity is a must.

Zonal Marking: Actually, not really needed as the shouts will determine this. However, I believe they mark zonally in reality, so....

Heavier Pressing: Barca press when they defend. Again, not really needed as you will use the shouts to do this. However, set it at maximum anyway.

Normal Tackling: Again, I'll use the shouts to set this.

More Roaming: Barca players move from their standard positions all the time. Greater roaming encourages this.

Player Roles/Duties

Sweeper Keeper/Support: Encourages the keeper to play short passes and make quick throws.

DCs/Cover/Stopper split: Barca have a high d-line when defending and a low one when in possession. The split DCs makes sense as it supports both. NB: I actually use a Ball Playing Defender in my tactic because I have players who can do the job. However, it is not a requirement.

Wing Backs/Attack: A key position on both flanks as it gives the team width when going forward. I will happily spend my entire transfer budget on a world class wing back they are so important to the system.

Defensive Midfielder/Defend: Although the deepest lying midfielder in the Barcelona tactic is the least technically accomplished, he is by no means a donkey and is a good ball player in his own right. The Anchor Man role is thus too limiting. The Defensive Midfielder role gives him a little more scope to feed players ahead of him.

MCR/Deep-Lying Playmaker/Support: Xavi's role and vital to ball maintenance. Will rarely get into goalscoring positions, but the deepness of his positioning due to the strategy ensures the payer is invariably unmarked and can dictate possession all match. Override the tactical defaults by ensuring he is the primary playmaker.

MCL/Advanced Playmaker/Attack: Iniesta's role and the key link between attack and midfield. As with Iniesta, might not score many goals, but provides multiple assists.

AML/R/Inside Forwards/Attack: This role encourages both wide men to move into open central space off the flanks when the FC drops deeper. It also opens space for the FBs to advance into on the flanks.

Trequartista: Messi's role, the playmaking centre forward who drops deep into midfield and runs at the defence.

Shouts

Retain Possession: Encourages keep ball.

Pass into Space: The technical passing shout that encourages all the players to play through balls to teammates breaking from deep.

Work Ball into Box: Encourage the edge of box passing moves and close range shots that typify Barcelona goals

Push Higher Up: Increases the d-line height when defending

Hassle Opponent: Ensures heavy pressing from all players

Stay on Feet: Ensures players stay on their feet in the tackle so they are able to immediately play the ball after winning it

Performance

I've only played one full season with this tactic, but results have been impressive. Won 35 out of 38, scoring 89 and conceding 8 in the league. Also won the League Cup and Champions League. Lost 3 matches all season, all of them 1-0.

NB: I'm not uploading the tactic. It can be created in minutes using the TC.

wwfan ... first of all I want to congratulate you for this excellent post - a big well done. A really interesting read.

I know it's been written more than a year ago but I would like to try and implement some of your ideas posted here in FM13 with my Liverpool squad. It's not going to be easy, I know, but I'm keen to give it a try and experiment a bit with the Barca-style system because it's a wonderful system and if it works properly, not only it provides wonderful footbal but also great results.

I have just one question please ... I'm a bit confused regarding the Shouts. The Shouts you mentioned, do you apply them in the beginning of the match or during the match depending on how the game is going? I'm asking because one of the Shouts you suggested is 'Push Higher Up' and as I understood from what you wrote, with the Counter/Balanced system, the D-Line will stay Deep. Therefore, if I use the 'Push Higher Up' Shout say from the 1st minute, I will be changing the D-Line of my defence completely, no? Or will this Shout work only when defending? If I'm not mistaken, as soon as you trigger a Shout, the Tactic will change accordingly and therefore if I apply it from the 1st minute and leave it there, then my D-Line will stay high, right? Correct me if I'm wrong.

Your feedback would be highly appreciated and once again, great job - keep it up :)

Thanks - Anthony

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So i decided to give this a go with my 1st season Arsenal squad. I'm in towards the end of December and i have been playing ok. im undefeated in the league, but lots of 2-2/3-3 draws, often conceding rather late.

i changed my tactic to counter/balanced for home games and defensive/balanced for tough away games, and its made a huge difference!!

i am able to keep possession and "attack" rather well even with "defensive" strategies matched with attacking full backs. I am defensively a lot more solid and my longest run without conceding was 12 games. I've beat Utd, City and Chelsea with 3-0, 3-1, 2-0 scorelines.

I am enjoying the football i am seeing from the ME a lot more now.

It seems that the descriptions in the TC are rather vague and don't properly reflect what actually happens in the ME.

As an Arsenal board promise to play attacking football, even with counter/defensive settings, the board are happy that i am in fact playing "attacking" football.

If i hadn't read this thread or wwfan's 12 step guide, i would have had no idea.

I think this is what a lot of players are getting frustrated at.

SI really needs to overhaul their descriptions or provide a more indepth guide to how the TC works.

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wwfan ... first of all I want to congratulate you for this excellent post - a big well done. A really interesting read.

I know it's been written more than a year ago but I would like to try and implement some of your ideas posted here in FM13 with my Liverpool squad. It's not going to be easy, I know, but I'm keen to give it a try and experiment a bit with the Barca-style system because it's a wonderful system and if it works properly, not only it provides wonderful footbal but also great results.

I have just one question please ... I'm a bit confused regarding the Shouts. The Shouts you mentioned, do you apply them in the beginning of the match or during the match depending on how the game is going? I'm asking because one of the Shouts you suggested is 'Push Higher Up' and as I understood from what you wrote, with the Counter/Balanced system, the D-Line will stay Deep. Therefore, if I use the 'Push Higher Up' Shout say from the 1st minute, I will be changing the D-Line of my defence completely, no? Or will this Shout work only when defending? If I'm not mistaken, as soon as you trigger a Shout, the Tactic will change accordingly and therefore if I apply it from the 1st minute and leave it there, then my D-Line will stay high, right? Correct me if I'm wrong.

Your feedback would be highly appreciated and once again, great job - keep it up :)

Thanks - Anthony

Up to you. Most of the shouts I employ from the off, but the Hassle Opponent one I turn on and off during the match in relation to scoreline / how well I was playing (or I did when I was using this system).

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Up to you. Most of the shouts I employ from the off, but the Hassle Opponent one I turn on and off during the match in relation to scoreline / how well I was playing (or I did when I was using this system).

Ok wwfan, thanks for the info :)

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Up to you. Most of the shouts I employ from the off, but the Hassle Opponent one I turn on and off during the match in relation to scoreline / how well I was playing (or I did when I was using this system).

Hi again wwfan ... sorry to bother you but I just have two last questions please :)

In order to try and implement this system successfully, do you think setting the Training to 'Team Cohesion' or 'Teamwork' in Match Preparation would help considerably? Or maybe 'Tactics' with Very High Intensity?

And finally, regarding the Team Width, since this Tactic is Narrow, do you think there will be a problem playing with it if the pitch is Narrow like Liverpool's (67M)? Because on a Narrow Pitch, it is suggested to play Wider usually.

Your suggestions would be highly appreciated.

Thanks once again :)

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Hi again wwfan ... sorry to bother you but I just have two last questions please :)

In order to try and implement this system successfully, do you think setting the Training to 'Team Cohesion' or 'Teamwork' in Match Preparation would help considerably? Or maybe 'Tactics' with Very High Intensity?

And finally, regarding the Team Width, since this Tactic is Narrow, do you think there will be a problem playing with it if the pitch is Narrow like Liverpool's (67M)? Because on a Narrow Pitch, it is suggested to play Wider usually.

Your suggestions would be highly appreciated.

Thanks once again :)

Neither of those training settings will help long-term. Team cohesion is useful when you've bought lots of new players. Tactics when you are implementing a new tactical system.

I tended to play on the biggest pitch possible. I think player quality might end up being the problem for Liverpool.

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Neither of those training settings will help long-term. Team cohesion is useful when you've bought lots of new players. Tactics when you are implementing a new tactical system.

I tended to play on the biggest pitch possible. I think player quality might end up being the problem for Liverpool.

Well, I don't really agree with you regarding Team Cohesion tbh. It's not useful only when you've bought lots of players I'm afraid. It is recommended when you buy a lot of players, yes, but not only! The excellent 'Guide to Football Manager' website explains Team Cohesion and Teamwork as follows:

Team Cohesion - this focus means that your squad will work on improving team blend, which affects the understanding between players on the pitch and therefore leads to better team performances, better player relationships and higher morale.

Teamwork - Having Teamwork set as the default focus throughout pre-season is important to increase team blend and gel the team together after the close-season break, particularly if new signings have been made (As you can see, not restricted to when you make new signings only). Furthermore, you may want to set Teamwork as the default focus during the entire season since the longer it is selected, the more team blend will accumulate (Again, not restricted to new signings only).

Regarding the biggest pitch possible, I don't really understand your point there. I mean, ok, if your team's pitch is large, you will have no problem at home. But not all pitches are large, especially this year with the pitch dimensions rule that was introduced, where all pitches (Premiership) must be of the same size. In fact, all Premiership pitches are of the same size - 104M long by 67M wide, and it's like that in FM13 of course. So, basically, I can't understand how you managed to be so successful when playing away if the opponents' pitches were not as large as yours for example.

Finally, regarding LFC's player quality - I agree, but you can still get rid of the dead-wood and bring in players that you think will succeed with the Barca-style tactics, no?! :)

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Just a little random input note from my Arsenal gaming experience thus far, with some regard to the DMC dropping between DC's mentioned earlier. I decided in this game to have the keeper's distribution on defender collect (tried with usual options; none, better technical center half or the better full back), as wanted a possession based style, but I felt the desired outcome meant the controlling football at times ended up with higher numbers of touches for majority of players across back line, over my preffered and much more accomplished in possession DMC options. So I decided to try the keeper distribution option with the DMC selected (of whom for me switches between a defensive midfielder or deep lying playmaker depending on opponents/player selected), now its not a DMC dropping back between DC's when in possession of the ball in attacking third or in the middle of park as sometimes occurs with Busquets, but he does drop back 10 yards or so nearer to the keeper than the DC's, of which at least with my 12th hour of FM day tired eyes, appear to split somewhat wider to enable a better passing angle option if the DMC gets on the ball. Likewise the full backs still drop back also to give a kinda 5 man 3 - 2 split initial starting base full of options to keep the ball from the back and build play from, with my main objective of having the ball more in at least a running backs hands, if not the quarterbacks hands (when playing Arteta or the like), than a defensive linesmans (watching NFL so bad analogy insued, my bad but get point I hopes?). Also found keeper clearing ball long occuring less often with more options for him to work with. Tis still a limited usage mind but I've found my number of touches increase for my DMC (first game Diaby had 74 pass attempts, completing 68, in the defensive midfield role during a 64 minute appearance), plus my two MC's ahead appeared to be on ball more and with Diaby in this example being much more capable of getting the ball to them, rather than simply getting scared and reverting ball back to keeper/getting back out of play, not saying that doesn't still occur but less, in small sample so far. I am not great at looking at the whole analysis type screens and am very tired so could be making this all up, but its something I'm just trying and finding fun/useful so thought I'd share, even if has been mentioned before, of which I have no clue about as read this thread before I last went to sleep....... *and I go sleep now*

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wwfan,

Thanks for sharing.

I've implemented your tactic on my team. However, been struggling in getting more than 60% of possession even against weaker teams. Is it meant to be such..?

If it is, then is there any way that i can do to increase possession..? Been trying a few, including using Cleon's guide but to no avail. Getting rather frustated now.

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So i decided to give this a go with my 1st season Arsenal squad. I'm in towards the end of December and i have been playing ok. im undefeated in the league, but lots of 2-2/3-3 draws, often conceding rather late.

i changed my tactic to counter/balanced for home games and defensive/balanced for tough away games, and its made a huge difference!!

i am able to keep possession and "attack" rather well even with "defensive" strategies matched with attacking full backs. I am defensively a lot more solid and my longest run without conceding was 12 games. I've beat Utd, City and Chelsea with 3-0, 3-1, 2-0 scorelines.

I am enjoying the football i am seeing from the ME a lot more now.

It seems that the descriptions in the TC are rather vague and don't properly reflect what actually happens in the ME.

As an Arsenal board promise to play attacking football, even with counter/defensive settings, the board are happy that i am in fact playing "attacking" football.

If i hadn't read this thread or wwfan's 12 step guide, i would have had no idea.

I think this is what a lot of players are getting frustrated at.

SI really needs to overhaul their descriptions or provide a more indepth guide to how the TC works.

Hey bro, you're on FM13 right?

Also, are you using the exact player roles/duties from OP or have you made any changes?

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Hey bro, you're on FM13 right?

Also, are you using the exact player roles/duties from OP or have you made any changes?

Yep 13.1.3.

Balanced/Counter

Zonal Marking

Press More

Default Tackling/Creative Freedom

Roam More

Drill crosses.

GK = Sweeper Keeper (Szczesny)

WB's on attack (Alaba/Jenkinson)

CD's are Stopper and Cover (Zouma/Hummels)

DM = DM on defend (M'Vila/Frimmpong/Coquelin)

DLP = support (in line with the cover CD) (Arteta/Ramsey)

ADP = attack (Wilshire/Carzola)

IFL = attack (Griesmann/Wilshire/Carzola)

IFR = support (Oxlade/Wilshire/Carzola/Ramirez)

CF = Treqartista (Falcao/Ademilson)

With how i have it set up, my left flank is the more attacking side (IFA and AdvPM is on left). I get heaps of crosses into the centre, where my forward will attack from deep and my "right" flank players are also deep and attack from. My IFR has scored heaps of goals from the edge of the box where the ball is often flicked on to him from Falcao from a left cross. Falcao = beast.

No other tweaks, but i use a few shouts depending on opposition and how the team is playing. i always have keep possession and hassle opponents on before kickoff. Against a strong team, i use play out of defense/work ball in box. Against weak teams i use push higher up.

Im currently on a 45 game unbeaten record going into the second season. I just beat chelsea 6-0. Best result so far in second season.

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Sounds really good. To go in the opposite direction would it be possible to set up an effective Real Madrid style tactic using just the TC and shouts?

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Do their wingers not try to stretch the field of play by playing wide, near the touchline?

So how would you try to replicate one touch passing? Afaik, the Barca players often spend little time on the ball, as they very quickly pass it to someone else. You need high tempo for this to encourage players to quickly pass the ball.

One of the downsides of the TC is that tempo and width cant also be adjusted up or down via a setting. If I change passing to short, it automatically drops width and tempo as well. It would be nice to also have options to change these two up or down. The only way now is to do it manually, but then it wont change at all when chaning strategies.

Another downside if that you cant train tactics with shouts for match preparation. Now, you create and train a tactic, but you always play with a highly altered tactic.

This is one of the things that I never understood about the ME. A slow tempo means that the players will generally take more time on the ball when attacking. Mentality, affects where they will pass: a higher mentality means riskier forward passes while a lower mentality will mean more possession/keepball sideways passes. As pointed out by wwfan, Barca do play a "slow-slow-fast" style - of sorts. Definitely not a high tempo kick and rush style.

But a slow tempo is also not the way to go for one ouch passing - the players take far too much time on the ball. Theoretically, a faster (faster, not fast) tempo coupled with lower (lower, not low) mentalities and decreasing through balls and run with ball instructions across the pitch might be closer to Barca's style. The "faster" tempo would also benefit Barca's pressing, as they press with relentless urgency.

One more thing. The real Barca definitely play with lots of width. It's why their pitch is so big. I could post some screenshots and point to Zonal Marking to support this point if needed but right now I really have to go to work or my boss will be a little upset.

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This is one of the things that I never understood about the ME. A slow tempo means that the players will generally take more time on the ball when attacking. Mentality, affects where they will pass: a higher mentality means riskier forward passes while a lower mentality will mean more possession/keepball sideways passes. As pointed out by wwfan, Barca do play a "slow-slow-fast" style - of sorts. Definitely not a high tempo kick and rush style.

But a slow tempo is also not the way to go for one ouch passing - the players take far too much time on the ball. Theoretically, a faster (faster, not fast) tempo coupled with lower (lower, not low) mentalities and decreasing through balls and run with ball instructions across the pitch might be closer to Barca's style. The "faster" tempo would also benefit Barca's pressing, as they press with relentless urgency.

One more thing. The real Barca definitely play with lots of width. It's why their pitch is so big. I could post some screenshots and point to Zonal Marking to support this point if needed but right now I really have to go to work or my boss will be a little upset.

I haven't played FM13 yet (afraid to install it... since I quit FM12 I have all this time for stuff I normally never had time to do!), but I tried to play Barcaesque on FM12 several times. And I found the passing length/tempo settings to be perhaps the most important settings to get right for my attacking play to work.

Too slow tempo/short passing and the players would loose possession due to presure. Too fast and they would just pass simple sideway passes constantly and not create any chances.

After a while I become pretty good at finding the right balance, where my best passers used just enough time on the ball to find a good opening.

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Digging up this thread, how might you suggest attacking a 42121.... 2 DMs, 1 MC. This tactic thrives through the middle and this formation is like a brick wall. I don't really have anyone good in the air to go around the formation. If anyone has general thoughts on attacking this formation while keeping the basis of the tactic, that would be helpful.

I'm struggling in FM13 to keep possession with this tactic and I think the high closing down is actually the problem..... players are being dragged way out of position and leaving fullbacks and wingers with acres of space. I am thinking of specific-marking wide players and lowering closing down for my wingers and fullbacks, to keep them from sprinting into the middle of the pitch.

edit: I'm waiting for the next ME update. I just can't take the 40 yard long shots that miss the goal by 60 yards. There's 5-10 of them per game, with the exact settings from the OP. I'm done being frustrated over this and will just hope the next ME update plays better.

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