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Cleon would you recommend that I make no changes to players instructions in Tactic Creator. I am not really good with all the sliders. I read another post that suggested that if you do not fully understand the tactic creator then it is best to leave all the players instructions on default and use shouts. I just wanted your feedback on this because I am not good with understanding the sliders or creating tactics. I struggle with understanding what is going on in the game and when to make changes so I guess that makes me a tactical dummy.

Also I would like my striker to drop deep link the midfield and play through balls to my attacking wingers and my advance playmaker attack who will be playing in the central midfield position. Would you recommend a deep lying forward attack or deep lying forward support and would you have him running from deep sometimes or rarely. Any advice you can give to this tactical dummy would be great.

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Cleon would you recommend that I make no changes to players instructions in Tactic Creator. I am not really good with all the sliders. I read another post that suggested that if you do not fully understand the tactic creator then it is best to leave all the players instructions on default and use shouts. I just wanted your feedback on this because I am not good with understanding the sliders or creating tactics. I struggle with understanding what is going on in the game and when to make changes so I guess that makes me a tactical dummy.

Also I would like my striker to drop deep link the midfield and play through balls to my attacking wingers and my advance playmaker attack who will be playing in the central midfield position. Would you recommend a deep lying forward attack or deep lying forward support and would you have him running from deep sometimes or rarely. Any advice you can give to this tactical dummy would be great.

Well if you aren't very good at understanding the instructions then K.I.S.S (Keep it simple stupid, a term used on here since the beginning of time) is always the best method. Only change the instructions manually if you want the player to do a specific thing and the current instructions don't allow for that. But it's very rare that I do this nowdays :)

I'd go for deep lying forward support for the reasons highlighted throughout the main thread especially the Ganso and Neymar sections :)

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Lurked on this thread for a while without posting, but I'm needing some advice. I am not using the WM, but rather a 4-2-3-1 and I have been trying to use some of the advice in this thread and carry it onto my save.

I am struggling with the forward play in my team. Last season in the league the team scored over 100 goals and had goals coming in from all over the front line. This season, it has been much harder to get a flowing attacking unit, and I've had some pretty poor results including 0-0s to relegation threatened teams. I feel that this is because the front line isn't really working, and getting the players involved is becoming very difficult.

This is the tactic that I am using -

formationd.png

An example of this is Eden Hazard who had a fantastic season previously, form has now dipped and he hasn't got a league goal this year. He has cipped in with a few assists, but it has been a fairly big drop in form.

hazardv.png

Similarly, Nico Gaitan who plays the AMR role isn't near the same level of productivity. He managed 11 assists in 16 games last year, but has just 4 in 13. He has scored 6, but 5 of them have come in 2 games, which makes him seem more effective than he has actually been.

The AMC is a little problematic as well. As he is set as an advanced playmaker, he is set to default as the playmaker so he has seen a fairly decent amount of the ball. However, using the last three games as an example of the link up issues, he hasn't really influenced the game majorly or created an assist. I think this is partly down to the movement of the striker and inside forwards. In my Man Utd save before my laptop crashed, I had Javier Hernandez scoring around 40 league goals a season, but in this save it is proving a lot more difficult. He has 11 in 19, but I feel he should be a lot more effective as a poacher (target man run onto ball) than he is, especially with the players around him.

I just would like a little advice on any changes I could make to get the front 4 in particular becoming more effective. Ideally I would like Hazard as playing quite advance on the left, so that the AMC could play it into him, or his runs opening up space for a through ball to the striker. I've tried to set Gaitan so that he picks the ball up, a little further away from goal so that he can have a run at the defence and either play in Hernandez or using his good long shots to score a few.

The team isn't performing badly, it's just that I am struggling to get the best out of the 4 attacking players.

Edit: Adding pictures of a recent 0-0 with Wolves.

Heat map -

heatmape.png

Hazard movement -

heatmap.png

That shows Hazard being forced down the line, rather than cutting inside. I am thinking the width might be the issue, but I played narrower last season and he was much better.

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Teams will be setting up against you this season to not conceede. So you'll have to break them down. So to do this I'd have my AP set to support so he becomes the creative outlet and stays in the hole. I'd also change one of the IF's and make them a winger to give you the width you'll need to create space and whip balls into the box. If not then everything becomes to narrow and it's really hard for you to break down a wall of 8 defenders. So you need the bit of width too.

I'd also be tempted to use a DLP defend duty for a MC so he stays deeper when you lose possession and regain it, so he can start building attacks again.

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I had to add this into an extra post, due to limit on pictures.

Hernandez scoring chances -

heatmapg.png

1 other chance for a striker is terrible, especially when he is meant to be the main goalscorer with Hazard, Thiago/Rooney, and Gaitan having very good attributes to set him up, as well as there roles which are defaulted for a lot of through balls.

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Teams will be setting up against you this season to not conceede. So you'll have to break them down. So to do this I'd have my AP set to support so he becomes the creative outlet and stays in the hole. I'd also change one of the IF's and make them a winger to give you the width you'll need to create space and whip balls into the box. If not then everything becomes to narrow and it's really hard for you to break down a wall of 8 defenders. So you need the bit of width too.

I'd also be tempted to use a DLP defend duty for a MC so he stays deeper when you lose possession and regain it, so he can start building attacks again.

I have set the AMC as a support, and have moved the width to manually set on the first notch of wide. During the match I will tweak it to see where I get best results. With the BWM on support, I felt that the defense would be secure, so opted for a B2B on support. I have changed it so the mentality is just before defensive, but I will change the role as I feel he does get a bit too advanced at times. Thanks for the quick reply.

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BWM's close down very heavily and can leave massive gaps, especially if you use 2 as they'll both go for same person and same balls.

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I have looked at an FA Cup game in more detail, and there is a bit of a problem. I only had 1 CCC the whole game and despite a 4-0 win I found it very hard to break them down.

28minuts.png

That shows Hazard on the left too close the full back, and not really in a position to do anything. I'd like him to drop a bit deeper to run at the defender, or make a run in between the full-back and centre half. The analysis showed that Hazard only moved inside twice, which both occured on the half-way line and not really a threat. Thiago (AMC) is also being isolated by the opposition, and I'm not sure what to do when they change to 2 DMs to mark him. Is there away for him to get away from this, and able to stamp his authority onto a game. Gaitan was great on the right as a supporting Winger, and he made 7 moves inside, all in very dangerous areas and ended up with a goal and 2 assists. Welbeck also scored, from a Gaitan through ball, but despite the lowly opposition struggled, and Hernandez did the same when he came on. Is an AMC with any IFs viable, or is there a fundamental error in my set-up.

Same again really. This time Hernandez has drifted out wide right, and isn't in any position to score. Thiago isn't in any space, and Hazard is too close to the full back IMO.

(Ignore the Steam chat haha)

50mins.png

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I don't really do anything other than use the shouts. Honestly I don't. I just do what I outlined in the first 15 mins section and then do the rest via shouts.

Ok, thanks :thup:

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I have looked at an FA Cup game in more detail, and there is a bit of a problem. I only had 1 CCC the whole game and despite a 4-0 win I found it very hard to break them down.

You should completley ignore the amount of CCC's you create etc as the stat isn't a true reflection on whether something was a easy chance or not.

How did you manage to win 4-0 if they were hard to break down? Set piece goals?

That shows Hazard on the left too close the full back, and not really in a position to do anything. I'd like him to drop a bit deeper to run at the defender, or make a run in between the full-back and centre half. The analysis showed that Hazard only moved inside twice, which both occured on the half-way line and not really a threat.

What role do you actually want Hazard to do? be a scorer of goals or a creator?

Judging by the screenshot he's still on attacking duty? You should have him on support imo.

If you actually look at the screenshot you'll see your team are split into 2 sections. You have the defence and midfield together yet the front 3 all a bit to static and easy to mark.

Thiago (AMC) is also being isolated by the opposition, and I'm not sure what to do when they change to 2 DMs to mark him

The AI (In England) very rarely ever used 2 DMC. From the screenshot they only use one. In fact in the screenshot he does have space to play into, it's the players around him who are positioned wrong and making him isolated not the opposition. If he was to recieve the ball, realisticly what could he do with it bar pass it back? Your front 3 are all marked out of the game, where is the support from the middle?

Is there away for him to get away from this, and able to stamp his authority onto a game. Gaitan was great on the right as a supporting Winger, and he made 7 moves inside, all in very dangerous areas and ended up with a goal and 2 assists. Welbeck also scored, from a Gaitan through ball, but despite the lowly opposition struggled, and Hernandez did the same when he came on. Is an AMC with any IFs viable, or is there a fundamental error in my set-up.

If you look at the last thing I posted in the main thread you'll see I use a simliar set up myself as Newcastle. The set up works fine but like I stated above in a previous post, using a playmaker in the AMC position and 2 inside forwards is a bit much and you lose all your width. But I see you use a winger now on support. Have you tried him on attacking and Hazard on support on the left? I think this is better suited to how you play.

the key to getting Thiago to work is the actual players around him. He needs support and runners around him to be able to pass to them and get them involved. Without this then he cannot influence a game. You mentioned above that the opposition are making him isolated I disagree. Judging by the screenshot you've posted its your won players making him isolated.

Have you altered any of the instructions manually?

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Yeah, Vidic got two from corners (which I don't really like) and one of the goals came from a through ball/punt up the pitch on the counter from Gaitan.

With Hazard, ideallyI would like him, along with Thiago to create most of the teams goals, playing in the poacher, while chipping in with a decent amount as well. I have him on the IF attack duty with long shots rarely, through balls often and cross ball sometimes. With Thiago I have long shots on sometimes, through balls often and wide play set as move into channels. On Gaitan I haven't changed anything apart from long shots on sometimes as he is decent from range. I will change swap the duties on the AML and AMR and give that a shot. Would you recommend any other changes?

With the MCs, and the support from midfield I have a BWM or support or defend depending on the opponents and a DLP on defend. Would it be a thought move the run from deep of the DLP to sometimes in order to give a little more support to Thiago? I feel that with Hazard and Thiago/Rooney in AMC that Welbeck or Hernandez should be on fire but it just isn't working. I will have another read through the main thread again.c

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Cleon in your Santos saved you gave your team narrow width so that the inside forward would cut inside more. But on your Swansea save you played with normal width. My question is which is better for encouraging your inside forward to cut in more normal or narrow width. I have Gervinho player as my AML set to inside forward attack his right foot is very strong so naturally he would cut inside on his stronger foot. I have also told him to cut inside. I am playing the exact set up as your Swansea team and the player roles are nearly the same. The only role I have changed is the right side central midfielder mine is set to advance playmaker attack. The only thing I have changed in my player instructions is setting longs shots to rarely for all my players and making my inside forward cross ball rarely. My team instructions are set to very fluid and control, shorter passing, creative freedom is set to default. I have changed closing down to stand off opponents to allow my defence to keep its shape, zonal marking and easy tackling

I also set my team to more roaming and drill crosses. I read your sections on shouts and started to use them in my game. I tend to use drop deeper, retain possession and pass into space for most of my games to draw out the other team and create space for my front three attackers.

I am bit worried about using the shouts that you suggested for winning the ball back early and dominating the opposition because I am worried about loosing my team shape.

Would you suggest using push higher up, get stuck in and hassle opponent shouts for when I am at home and wanting to totally control the other team.

In your Swansea save you seem to get your wide players to run from deep late and get in the box on through balls from your striker can I ask you what player instructions you would suggest I give to my players so that they can have the same impact as your wide players. I guess what I asking is do you change their mentality and run from deep instructions because my wide players have run from deep set to often on the default tactic creator and their mentalities are on attack I would say about 14 notches on the slider.

Do you think I need to change anything on their player instructions or should I leave it the same

Thanks for your in advance

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Cleon,

did you play all game full match?

I realise you are new to the forum but if you've read the thread you'd know the answer. I did a whole section on how I watch matches and set up etc :D

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Cleon in your Santos saved you gave your team narrow width so that the inside forward would cut inside more. But on your Swansea save you played with normal width. My question is which is better for encouraging your inside forward to cut in more normal or narrow width. I have Gervinho player as my AML set to inside forward attack his right foot is very strong so naturally he would cut inside on his stronger foot. I have also told him to cut inside. I am playing the exact set up as your Swansea team and the player roles are nearly the same. The only role I have changed is the right side central midfielder mine is set to advance playmaker attack. The only thing I have changed in my player instructions is setting longs shots to rarely for all my players and making my inside forward cross ball rarely. My team instructions are set to very fluid and control, shorter passing, creative freedom is set to default. I have changed closing down to stand off opponents to allow my defence to keep its shape, zonal marking and easy tackling

I also set my team to more roaming and drill crosses. I read your sections on shouts and started to use them in my game. I tend to use drop deeper, retain possession and pass into space for most of my games to draw out the other team and create space for my front three attackers.

I am bit worried about using the shouts that you suggested for winning the ball back early and dominating the opposition because I am worried about loosing my team shape.

Would you suggest using push higher up, get stuck in and hassle opponent shouts for when I am at home and wanting to totally control the other team.

In your Swansea save you seem to get your wide players to run from deep late and get in the box on through balls from your striker can I ask you what player instructions you would suggest I give to my players so that they can have the same impact as your wide players. I guess what I asking is do you change their mentality and run from deep instructions because my wide players have run from deep set to often on the default tactic creator and their mentalities are on attack I would say about 14 notches on the slider.

Do you think I need to change anything on their player instructions or should I leave it the same

Thanks for your in advance

Use the shouts when you feel you need something a little bit more from your team. Try and be a reactive manager if you can and react to ingame events that's what I do. I don't have a set plan on when I use things, I use them based on whats happening and what I need to do to get a result.

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Just a question, maybe without any importance, In wich match speed you see the games?

And, reading in some other threads, seems like you have good results with the goals that comes from a cross, in your opinion,

What atributes are the more important for a make them succeful?, for the target of the cross (Off the Ball, Anticipation, Decisions? + Jump and Header for

floated crosses?) and for the Winger/Fullback (Crossing, Anticipation, Decisions, Composure? + a bit of speed? only speculating :D )

Sorry if this isn't the place to ask this, and sorry for my Caverman-English too :D

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Use the shouts when you feel you need something a little bit more from your team. Try and be a reactive manager if you can and react to ingame events that's what I do. I don't have a set plan on when I use things, I use them based on whats happening and what I need to do to get a result.

Thanks for the help mate regarding shouts. Could you offer me some help regarding my question about player instructions for the wide players. I want them to perform like your players on the Swansea and Santos save. I sent you a PM about 1 week ago but you never got back to me.

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Thanks for the help mate regarding shouts. Could you offer me some help regarding my question about player instructions for the wide players. I want them to perform like your players on the Swansea and Santos save. I sent you a PM about 1 week ago but you never got back to me.

Ahh sorry I don't answer all PM's as I get way to many and don't have the time to reply to all. Especially if they are tactic questions as they require detailed responses at times so if anyone wants to know anything tactically then posting here is way better.

I didn't change anything manually on the wide players. If you look in the thread you'll notice 1 of the wide players will be on a support duty and the other more attacking. This makes one of them arrive late in the box if the rest of the team are set up to support this. It's all in the player roles and duites. Watch games closely and alter the roles/duties and see which works best for your set of players.

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No clue what you are on about, sorry.

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I just noticed a slight contradictory. In your main thread you say that the 4-4-2 can still be used to success in FM, yet ive seen you dismiss the use of CMs in other threads and class them as being bugged in the ME. Sorry if its a silly question, but does this mean that the 4-4-2 is deemed pretty much useless? Since the 2 CMs wont track back?

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I just noticed a slight contradictory. In your main thread you say that the 4-4-2 can still be used to success in FM, yet ive seen you dismiss the use of CMs in other threads and class them as being bugged in the ME. Sorry if its a silly question, but does this mean that the 4-4-2 is deemed pretty much useless? Since the 2 CMs wont track back?

No it's not a contradiction, as the thread you are on about is a 4-2-3-1. It's that formation whats the issue as such due to how it works in the ME. In the 442 you also have wingers to track back so the issues you face with the CM's are not the same as with a 4-2-3-1 :)

Don't make the mistake others do and take my posts out of context and think they apply in other threads on about different shapes :)

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No it's not a contradiction, as the thread you are on about is a 4-2-3-1. It's that formation whats the issue as such due to how it works in the ME. In the 442 you also have wingers to track back so the issues you face with the CM's are not the same as with a 4-2-3-1 :)

Don't make the mistake others do and take my posts out of context and think they apply in other threads on about different shapes :)

Sorry, I wasn't trying to have a go. I was just curious. I had assumed that the bug you mentioned was about the CM position in the ME itself and my mind flickered back to the main thread. Thank you for clearing that up :cool: .

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Sorry, I wasn't trying to have a go. I was just curious. I had assumed that the bug you mentioned was about the CM position in the ME itself and my mind flickered back to the main thread. Thank you for clearing that up :cool: .

I didn't taking as you was having a go, sorry if it sounded defensive :)

It's just some people see something written and think it applies to everything. The difference with the 4-4-2 is the MC's don't have to do nearly as much work as they would in a 4-2-3-1. In a 4-2-3-1 they have to cover the wings, cover the centre and act as DMC's all at the same time. This confuses them and no matter which they do it'll be the wrong option. They have to do to many jobs at once and cover far too much space which is impossible.

In the 442 the wingers will help out the fullbacks and they'll cover the wings and track back if you've set it up correctly. In the 4231 the space down the flanks is just to great at times even if you manage to get the AML/AMR to track back, it'll never be enough :)

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I didn't taking as you was having a go, sorry if it sounded defensive :)

It's just some people see something written and think it applies to everything. The difference with the 4-4-2 is the MC's don't have to do nearly as much work as they would in a 4-2-3-1. In a 4-2-3-1 they have to cover the wings, cover the centre and act as DMC's all at the same time. This confuses them and no matter which they do it'll be the wrong option. They have to do to many jobs at once and cover far too much space which is impossible.

In the 442 the wingers will help out the fullbacks and they'll cover the wings and track back if you've set it up correctly. In the 4231 the space down the flanks is just to great at times even if you manage to get the AML/AMR to track back, it'll never be enough :)

Cleon how would you set up the wingers in a 442 to track back. WOuld you set them up as wide midfielders are wingers and would you have any of the wingers cuttIng inside.

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If you use a standard 442 they should automatically track back.

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Sorry Cleon, i have read your thread, but i understand how you analysis match

i'm 4231 (2 dm with ml, mc, mr )and liverpool 442

I cant keep possession ,

following are the circumstances that led to goals

can you tell me how to fix it

[video=youtube;alghGtSNKfA]

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@Dep Trai

00:07 - Liverpool are playing a high line with almost a 4-2-4. They are obviously attacking and don't really think much of your chances in this game. This can be a good thing, because you should be able to find a lot of space. However, I'm guessing you have default or man-marking set, because your MC, who should be central presumably waiting for a nice outball to start a counter attack, has instead moved across to man mark whoever is Liverpool's MCR. This causes him to be double marked, because your DMCL is already doing that job. Also, it appears that your DMCR is a defensive player, who is gifting way too much space to Lucas Leiva, who receives the ball in space. It is already clear that your fullbacks are not defending enough because Liverpool's pushed-up wingers are goalside of them. This leads directly to the goal.

00:18 - There are nine players within a very small area crowded around the ball - 5 black, 4 red. Your shape is almost indeterminable here, so I'm guessing you are closing down too much. Everyone has been attracted to the ball and being cut out by Liverpool's short interplay. Wherever the ball moves, your players rush to close it down, leaving gaps for another opposition player to move into and thus receive the ball. This is exemplified at 00:21, when Charlie Adam receives the ball and has no less than FOUR players surrounding him - none of which are putting him under any significant pressure. Again, the fifth player is your fullback who lets Downing ghost past him for his second goal.

00:29 - I assume by this point, at two goals down, you pretty much went for broke. This is because you are suddenly playing a suicidally high line which Liverpool exploit with ease.

Overall, I think you firstly decided to counter attack the opposition, which is not such a bad idea. However, your execution of that plan was heavily flawed. It looks like you were closing down too much, not positionally disciplined enough and didn't deal with the key threats on the flank in one-vs-one battles. Against a 442 like Liverpool were playing, playing two DMCs gives the opposition MCs too much time and space on the ball. Especially when both of those MCs are Lucas Leiva and Charlie Adam - creative, but fairly static, players. The third midfielder was rendered useless by picking either the MCR or MCL to double-up on, rather than staying central and high between the liverpool defence and midfield. It would have been better to play 4411, thus pushing out the Liverpool midfield. When the opposition midfield has free runners, like a Lampard or Gerrard or Cahill, who is going to break from deep and get into the box, that is the time to play some sort of defensive screen in DMC. The other major flaw was that you were constantly caught playing Liverpool's extremely attacking wingers onside, particularly Downing. I don't know what role or duty the fullbacks were on, but I would have set them up as defending and maybe even played converted centrebacks in these positions - as opposed to attacking fullbacks, for example.

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Sorry I didn't see the question posted. I've had a quick look and I have to agree with what's written above really.

You set up to counter attack which is what I would have done but you didn't keep the shape to be able to do this effectivley. You was far too agressive in your closing down and this caused holes to appear and you lost some of your shape.

Zdlr covered everything else and I can't really add to what he wrote :)

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What do you do when you find yourself having a decent amount of possession, it's even in the opposition's field, however when you get to that final pass players can't make it... it's always being intercepted and things like that... can't get the ball to a free man. I play a 4-2-3-1 and usually the striker and the 2 inside forwards are just on the line with the opposition's defenders however I can't find a through pass to create real chances... so most of the opportunities end up as long shots... Most of the opposition are playing 4-2-2-2 (yes, I am in Brazil), I tried exploiting the flanks but still, my striker is short and still can't get that final pass.

So how do you solve this kind of problems? Do you alter width, tempo etc., player mentality, roles etc... I would really like an insight on stuff like this.

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What do you do when you find yourself having a decent amount of possession, it's even in the opposition's field, however when you get to that final pass players can't make it... it's always being intercepted and things like that... can't get the ball to a free man.

I'm not that bothered about possession in all honesty its overrated. I'd gladly have 30% and win 3-0 than have 70% and win 1-0. However if its been interecpted or you just can't get someone into the game then I'd pause the game and use the analysis tab to look back at some of the clips. Then I'd know exactly why this is happening. It could be a case of lack of movement up top meaning you have no space to play into.

It could be that the players are forced into making the wrong decisions due to beel closed down heavily. It could be a number of issues really but the only way to be certain would to be watch the clips back in the analysis tab to be certain.
I play a 4-2-3-1 and usually the striker and the 2 inside forwards are just on the line with the opposition's defenders however I can't find a through pass to create real chances... so most of the opportunities end up as long shots... Most of the opposition are playing 4-2-2-2 (yes, I am in Brazil), I tried exploiting the flanks but still, my striker is short and still can't get that final pass.

I play in Brazil too
:)

Exploiting the flanks doesn't really work though with the system you use though as you don' have players in positions to make it work. I mean beside the fullbacks the AML/AMR will be to far advanced and you've instructed them to cut inside as they are inside forwards. So asking them to exploit the flanks won't work that well.

One of the problems you have is you are becoming too compact in the middle uptop. You've instructed both your wide players to cut inside and play in simliar space to the striker and AMC. This makes it really easy to mark against as you lose all your width.

I've explained in the thread already why I like to use a inside forward and a winger and highlighted the strengths of doing this and what benfits you get
:)

What I change would depend on what I see though so I can't reall give you an answer. Use the analysis tab and see exactly why its not working and connecting though
:)

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@Dep Trai

00:07 - Liverpool are playing a high line with almost a 4-2-4. They are obviously attacking and don't really think much of your chances in this game. This can be a good thing, because you should be able to find a lot of space. However, I'm guessing you have default or man-marking set, because your MC, who should be central presumably waiting for a nice outball to start a counter attack, has instead moved across to man mark whoever is Liverpool's MCR. This causes him to be double marked, because your DMCL is already doing that job. Also, it appears that your DMCR is a defensive player, who is gifting way too much space to Lucas Leiva, who receives the ball in space. It is already clear that your fullbacks are not defending enough because Liverpool's pushed-up wingers are goalside of them. This leads directly to the goal.

.

thankyou zDlr:)

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What I change would depend on what I see though so I can't reall give you an answer. Use the analysis tab and see exactly why its not working and connecting though
:)

Thanks for the quick reply, I have since then switched the AMR to a winger, to try and create more space, but it's still very hard... indeed I'll try to analyze things more... The problem is that players don't have space, they are being closed down and marked tightly.

I'll try more by myself to find a solution to this issue, I'm sure it'll feel better:D Also, BIG thanks for the thread, it really helped me a lot in understanding the game!

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thankyou zDlr:)

You are Dep Trai?

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Thanks for the quick reply, I have since then switched the AMR to a winger, to try and create more space, but it's still very hard... indeed I'll try to analyze things more... The problem is that players don't have space, they are being closed down and marked tightly.

I'll try more by myself to find a solution to this issue, I'm sure it'll feel better:D Also, BIG thanks for the thread, it really helped me a lot in understanding the game!

Well if you have a look at the analysis you should see why you don't have any space. Are players too advanced? Too static? Not moving into the channels etc?

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Cleon,

Iv'e took around a week to read through this thread - absolutely amazing though! Iv'e read guide after guide and spent hours trying to understand it, and failed.. until now!

I'm still struggling though, and want your opinion on a few things. I'm playing as Swansea trying to replicate your success and having mixed results. I trounced Blackburn 8-0 at home (Britton 5 assists and 1 goal!), but iv'e now got a run of games that looks like this.

United (A)

Chelsea (A)

Liverpool (H)

Arsenal (A)

Spurs (A)

Everton (H).

I got battered in the first four, tried to tinker with my tactics to no avail. I was playing 4-1-2-2-1 but I couldn't get it to work, I found it was too cramped and my players got man marked too tightly and didn't have enough time on the ball, and either lost it or kicked it out. I'm really struggling creating space, getting Sinclair and Dyer to get beyond the fullbacks as they cut inside is really difficult.. Dyer moreso, often gets the ball to feet, turns and is marked too tightly to do anything and loses it!

Iv'e opted for a 4-2-3-1 as in the previous formation. Graham was isolated, wasn't doing much regardless of what role I played him. Iv'e had success now though by playing Routledge AMC to pull the players out of position in the defence, which is something I know you have done with Ganso and Neymar.. but its Sinclair who i'm not really getting enough out of.

As Sinclair gets the ball at AML, he will cut inside and sometimes get tackled. Whereas I'd rather him play a short pass into Britton (DLP) or Routledge (AMC) for a quick 1 - 2 and get in behind the full back. What can I do to encourage this? On the up though, currently playing the spurs game over and over and i've gone from losing non stop to dominating! Iv'e mirrored your success by having Dyer/Sinclair cross to each other as well for tap ins, working a treat!

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Cleon,

Iv'e took around a week to read through this thread - absolutely amazing though! Iv'e read guide after guide and spent hours trying to understand it, and failed.. until now!

I'm still struggling though, and want your opinion on a few things. I'm playing as Swansea trying to replicate your success and having mixed results. I trounced Blackburn 8-0 at home (Britton 5 assists and 1 goal!), but iv'e now got a run of games that looks like this.

United (A)

Chelsea (A)

Liverpool (H)

Arsenal (A)

Spurs (A)

Everton (H).

I got battered in the first four, tried to tinker with my tactics to no avail. I was playing 4-1-2-2-1 but I couldn't get it to work, I found it was too cramped and my players got man marked too tightly and didn't have enough time on the ball, and either lost it or kicked it out. I'm really struggling creating space, getting Sinclair and Dyer to get beyond the fullbacks as they cut inside is really difficult.. Dyer moreso, often gets the ball to feet, turns and is marked too tightly to do anything and loses it!

Iv'e opted for a 4-2-3-1 as in the previous formation. Graham was isolated, wasn't doing much regardless of what role I played him. Iv'e had success now though by playing Routledge AMC to pull the players out of position in the defence, which is something I know you have done with Ganso and Neymar.. but its Sinclair who i'm not really getting enough out of.

As Sinclair gets the ball at AML, he will cut inside and sometimes get tackled. Whereas I'd rather him play a short pass into Britton (DLP) or Routledge (AMC) for a quick 1 - 2 and get in behind the full back. What can I do to encourage this? On the up though, currently playing the spurs game over and over and i've gone from losing non stop to dominating! Iv'e mirrored your success by having Dyer/Sinclair cross to each other as well for tap ins, working a treat!

Are you using classic or the TC mode?

Also you mentioned you've switched tactics, was everything fluid?

Have you used the analysis tab to watch back the games you struggled to create space in to see what the issue is? I know you said its due to been tight marked but is that from you been too advanced or was it something else?

The key with playing a lone striker is he needs to make the space for the support players. So if you use an advanced forward or a poacher then he wont create as much space as a DLF support etc. That's why Dyer/Sinclair did so well for me due to Graham making the space for them to run into.

You've not said much about the actual set up you use and the settings. You've mentioned the shape but I can't offer any more advice without knowing the settings etc :)

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Sorry i'll be clearer!

I'm using the TC mode.

Firstly, I wanted to use 4-1-2-2-1 to basically counter attack teams.. draw them out using Graham and then exploit the space using Dyer & Sinclair. Didn't like it though, nor have success, so I decided to try and use posession, hence the change to 4-2-3-1 as the two CM's get the ball further up the pitch and can do more damage. I'm using fluid with that, although only recently.

I have tried to use the analysis tab, but i guess I'm not always 100% what bad movement looks like! Even when I used graham as a DLF/support, it just didn't have the desired effect and that's when I changed formation.

By changing to 4-2-3-1 ive tried to emulate a few things.

- AMC or ST can pull the defence out of shape, either by exchanging movement or passes with each other, or interacting with the wingers.

- Get players higher up the pitch where they can do damage, as the 4-1-2-2-1 was too deep for me and drew pressure.

I was playing rigid, but i'll change to fluid as you mentioned.. maybe that's why iv'e struggled for space. I use the attacking option too, but I drop the defensive line a few notches down from push up because it leaves me too exposed, and I increase the notches on width and tempo to the first setting of wide/fast.

Passing is shorter, closing down is press more, marking is zonal and everything else is default.

Now, like I said this is brilliant against the likes of Blackburn at home, but against bigger teams I know i'll get exposed. I keep playing the spurs game over and over and I set up like this:

Rb/Lb (fullback default)

Cb (stopper)

Cb (cover)

DLP (support)

BWM (support

AML (Inside forward attack)

AMC (AP attack)

AMR (Winger attack)

ST (DLF support)

(I dont know how to screenshot, I need to learn!)

Ok so i'll try explain my set up. As I said, 1 DMC and 2 CM got closed down, so by creating a CM x 2 and AMC im trying to push further up and create more space. I get wingers to mark the fullbacks, and the AMC to do a job on the deepest CM.

Against spurs I went 2-0 up, it worked fantastic... and I thought great, Iv'e got the 4-4-1-1 covered for future reference (mainly vs everton!), but then they changed to 4-3-1-2 and it all went downhill, I couldn't handle it. I watched the full match, and tried to exploit the flankes but it didn't work. How should I have reacted to this? I just get worried that with 2 CM's that the defence is exposed once the midfield gets bypassed - and as Swansea thats going to happen to i'm a bit stuck for ideas.

I'll try use the analysis tab a bit more, but with regards to player movement could you tell me what to look for? For example, if you proposed that my set up meant the ST and AMC were too close together, would that mean the average positions on the analysis tab would be close together and therefore easier to mark? (just an example, incase im wrong!)

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I'll reply properly after but...

You've misunderstood when I mentioned fluid. I meant are all the bars fluid on the tactic overview (Familiarity)where match prep is. Click the blue bar and it'll show you any area that isn't fluid. This can cause a few issues so its important to check :)

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I'm sure we have this written something on the forums but...

To take a screenie hit alt-f9 (not sure for mac, the same?) and the result will be in your documents/si games/screenshots (I forget the exact folder names but it's fairly obvious once you've found the SI folder.

Then sign yourself up to an image hosting (I host my own stuff or use imageShack but there are other options) site and upload your screenshot (you can doctor it first in paint or another program if you like). There will be instructions to post your image to a forum on the image hosting site, otherwise wrap the URL of the image in [ IMG ] URL [ /IMG ] (no spaces) or hit the picture button in the Go Advanced button.

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Sorry i'll be clearer!

I'm using the TC mode.

Firstly, I wanted to use 4-1-2-2-1 to basically counter attack teams.. draw them out using Graham and then exploit the space using Dyer & Sinclair. Didn't like it though, nor have success, so I decided to try and use posession, hence the change to 4-2-3-1 as the two CM's get the ball further up the pitch and can do more damage. I'm using fluid with that, although only recently.

4-2-3-1 only really works well if you are the superior team. Any half decent team will just rip it apart due to the MC's not tracking back and doing their job. Infact I did a little post in another thread offering feedback about the issue. I'll post it below to give you a general idea;

Arsenal 0 Everton 1

This is from the opening minutes of the game. And while you are attacking it highlights the threat and the issues you get when using MC’s.

1.png

Everton are using a 4-4-1-1 formation. So when you attack you have 2 central defenders at the back and your fullbacks pushed up. Now this for me would already be a huge problem because when you lose possession that is to pick up Everton’s AMC? Look at all the free space he has to play in. This is great for quick counterattacks against you.

The next screenshot is what happens after your move breaks down;

2.png

Note the 2 yellow circles, your MC’s aren’t really picking them up. Plus look at Everton’s AMC, free yet again.

I’m less that 5 minutes into watching this game and already know how Everton will hurt you when they actually get possession. Luckily for you thought Everton seem wasteful and this move comes to nothing due to them passing back to the keeper who boots it up field.

The next screenshot for me highlights the real problem;

3.png

As you can yet again the MC’s fail to track back and leave the striker and AMC unmarked in the centre of the pitch. The gap between the MC’s and the Everton players is huge.

It’s a common ME problem but not a lot of people realise this.

It doesn’t mean you can’t have success playing 4-2-3-1 but you need to realise that your defence will be worked a lot if you lose the ball. Don’t rely on the midfield to help or take any pressure off them.

I know this isn’t what I was supposed to be looking at but I thought I’d kill 2 birds with 1 stone and highlight this major issue too so people can see the problem I always speak about whenever someone mentions the 4-2-3-1.

Now if you remember you said you weren’t really any more vulnerable from pushing your fullbacks up to support the inside forwards. Let me show you this;

4.png

Look how far up your fullback is. This comes from a move where you lose possession and the fullback gets caught out by been too advanced. A simple pass from the Everton player and he splits the whole of your defence. You are very vulnerable and in this game it actually costs you the 3 points. In fact this happens 3 or 4 times throughout the game.

While you have possession you are fine but as soon as you lose it you play a risky game by over committing. This is why you become more vulnerable and actually risk shipping goals. The move above is what Everton score their goal from.

----------------------------------------

  • I have tried to use the analysis tab, but i guess I'm not always 100% what bad movement looks like! Even when I used graham as a DLF/support, it just didn't have the desired effect and that's when I changed formation.

Well you should be able to spot why your players aren't making the runs. It could be that play is to far ahead of them. You're too advanced so they don't have time to be effective. Or it could be a case of you're too narrow when you do get the ball so they can mark you easily.

- AMC or ST can pull the defence out of shape, either by exchanging movement or passes with each other, or interacting with the wingers.

- Get players higher up the pitch where they can do damage, as the 4-1-2-2-1 was too deep for me and drew pressure.

Your striker, what was he? I mean what role.

If he was a DLF on support then he should make the space for the inside forwards to exploit. If he was more of a poacher then the key would be your AMC, he should be on a support duty so he can stay in the hole and play the wide players and striker in with throughballs and be a passing outlet himself at all times. A bit like the set up I posted in the thread about Newcastle, its actually the very last post in the main thread and the 1st post on page 2.

I use the attacking option too, but I drop the defensive line a few notches down from push up because it leaves me too exposed, and I increase the notches on width and tempo to the first setting of wide/fast.

You even play attacking against the big sides? This could be one of the reasons for no space as you are pushed quite high up the pitch and always look at rushing play. Attacking isn't always a good option especially for creating space and unlocking defences, it can have the opposite reaction and put you too ahead of the ball. A slower more cautious build up is better in a lot of cases.

but then they changed to 4-3-1-2 and it all went downhill, I couldn't handle it. I watched the full match, and tried to exploit the flankes but it didn't work. How should I have reacted to this? I just get worried that with 2 CM's that the defence is exposed once the midfield gets bypassed - and as Swansea thats going to happen to i'm a bit stuck for ideas

As they changed to a 2 striker formation your stopper/cover combo would then get caught out especially against pacy attackers. A stopper and cover combo don't play inline with each other, so there is actually a gap between them as they are not inline. This means pacy attackers or to be more specific poacher kind of players will just keep exploiting this pocket of space and work this space to their own advantage. It's a risky game and not one I would use against a 2 striker formation. Against lone strikers its fine but not 2 strikers.

I think this will be one of the reasons why you struggled when they changed shape. Did you change before how you played beforesomething (other than the formation change) happened or just because of the formation change? Personally I'd have waited and seen how the next 2 minutes or so played out and change based on what happens.

I'd have also probably used the shouts from the main thread that keep possession. And seeing as you don't have a DMC their AMC would have been playing in free space like in the screenshots I posted in the beginning of this reply.

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I'm sure we have this written something on the forums but...

To take a screenie hit alt-f9 (not sure for mac, the same?) and the result will be in your documents/si games/screenshots (I forget the exact folder names but it's fairly obvious once you've found the SI folder.

Then sign yourself up to an image hosting (I host my own stuff or use imageShack but there are other options) site and upload your screenshot (you can doctor it first in paint or another program if you like). There will be instructions to post your image to a forum on the image hosting site, otherwise wrap the URL of the image in [ IMG ] URL [ /IMG ] (no spaces) or hit the picture button in the Go Advanced button.

I think its in the FAQ's at the top of the forum.

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Ah brilliant! I'll take your advice and play the game again... hopefully they change back to the 4-3-1-2 and I can try putting both defenders on cover and possibly an anchorman to overcrowd the middle of the pitch. I'll let you know how I get on!

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Ah brilliant! I'll take your advice and play the game again... hopefully they change back to the 4-3-1-2 and I can try putting both defenders on cover and possibly an anchorman to overcrowd the middle of the pitch. I'll let you know how I get on!

If you need any more help I'm happy to try and help if I can :)

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If you need any more help I'm happy to try and help if I can :)

Iv'e always wanted to try and understand the game.. never been a fan of plug and play! I am struggling with a few things... although I don't want you to think im simply asking you for the answers.. I just want to know you're way of thinking and things you look for to amend them in the future.

Sinclair is dribbling alot... losing out to walker and losing us possession.. i'd much rather him play a one two and run behind the RB. Iv'e lowered his creative freedom because naturally the inside forward role is fairly creative.. which is useful but against a top side away it can be punished.

Also i'm not sure about Dyer. I recall you had him as a winger but i'm not really getting the best out of him. I know this is just one game so it's not really fair to judge.. but i'm just replaying the same game over just to see the effect of tinkering with the tactical instructions. How did you utilise him to run in behind the full back? I suppose the trick is really that there has to be space to move into, and unless I create it via player movement and passing it won't exist! Grrrr.

Finally, how can you be sure whether a player is ignoring a pass because of instructions or attributes? A few times I spot the crossfield pass to sinclair but it's not played. Could this be encouraged using the shouts? I know you've probably covered a lot of this and im making you re-iterate things which you get asked non-stop, so if its easier to just link me to pages then that's fine! I'd just like to know what you used at swansea so I can see it in action and physically see the effect myself.

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Iv'e always wanted to try and understand the game.. never been a fan of plug and play! I am struggling with a few things... although I don't want you to think im simply asking you for the answers.. I just want to know you're way of thinking and things you look for to amend them in the future.

I don't mind helping people who really want to learn, I'd gladly spend all day talking tactics with them, so you're fine with the questions keep them coming :)

Sinclair is dribbling alot... losing out to walker and losing us possession.. i'd much rather him play a one two and run behind the RB. Iv'e lowered his creative freedom because naturally the inside forward role is fairly creative.. which is useful but against a top side away it can be punished.

You could lower his passing to something more shorter to try and encourage him to pass to soomeone closer to him. Or for this game you could ask him to play as either an advanced playmaker or a winger if coming inside isn't working for you. Although to be fair Sinclair isn't good at doing anything other than dribble and his pace. He lacks mental and technical attributes. Some games you'll just have to accept he can't always use his pace and acceleration and without that for me Sinclair is weak and no better than a League One player is you look at his attributes.

Also remember he has PPM's so they might not be beneficial to how you want to play. I think he likes to knock the ball past people doesn't he? I'm not on FM so can't check myself just yet.

Also i'm not sure about Dyer. I recall you had him as a winger but i'm not really getting the best out of him. I know this is just one game so it's not really fair to judge.. but i'm just replaying the same game over just to see the effect of tinkering with the tactical instructions. How did you utilise him to run in behind the full back? I suppose the trick is really that there has to be space to move into, and unless I create it via player movement and passing it won't exist! Grrrr.

I just used him as a winger. I honestly didn't give him any other instructions other than the standard ones that come with the role.

I played fluid and a control strategy though because Swansea lack the players to play attacking football imo.

Finally, how can you be sure whether a player is ignoring a pass because of instructions or attributes? A few times I spot the crossfield pass to sinclair but it's not played. Could this be encouraged using the shouts? I know you've probably covered a lot of this and im making you re-iterate things which you get asked non-stop, so if its easier to just link me to pages then that's fine! I'd just like to know what you used at swansea so I can see it in action and physically see the effect myself.

That's a tough one really. But if a player has low creativity attribute then he might not see the pass that you see. And if he has low decisions then this can also make him choose the wrong option.

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You managed to beat them yet?

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Cleon is it possible to try to win the ball quickly and do a heavy pressing game even if the tactic includes 2 DMC and 1 MC ?

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