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LlamaZA

[Tactics] Creating your own tactic

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Making a tactic in FM12

Changelog

2012/01/07 minor adjustment to Roaming playstyle section to include off the ball attribute (thanks Cleon)

2012/01/25 adjusted the Philosophy section based on musings in this thread

2012/02/24 added quote to Philosophy section from this thread

2012/04/06 added skin for use in creating tactics

2012/04/07 update Playing Style section for additional attribute considerations

Introduction

Creating tactics for me is one of the most rewarding and interesting parts of the game. I have never understood those of us that download others tactics and play the game from there. I understand that many do not feel comfortable creating tactics, or have tried and failed an in order to enjoy the game more have reverted to downloadable 'super tactics'.

My aim in this post is to create a discussion on how to create your own tactic from scratch, to understand what the choices are and how they will affect your team. This is in no way complete but it will provide a base from which to create your own tactic and hopefully immerse yourself in the game further.

I will be doing this by using the standard tactical creator sysem rather than the classic system as I feel not only is the creator system more accurate and intuitive but also a beginner should stay clear of a system that attempts to differentiate between 13 and 14 'clicks' and should stick to designing a tactic on a look and feel basis rather than an intricate design method.

For more experienced tactic creators, there may not be much here that you don't already know but perhaps there are a few points you may find interesting.

Starting off

Creating a tactic can be done in several ways but generally speaking they come down to two key variables, do you build a tactic and then consider the players, or do you build a tactic around your players?

I'm going to consider this analysis from the perspective of a manager that wants to get the best out of their current squad and is willing to sacrifice their own 'football morals' for the good of the team (imagine Wenger and Stoke trying to get them to play a patient short-passing game, and as a real life example Villas-Boas decision to play a high defensive line with pressing backfired considerably as he had a slow backline – this is what happens when managers ask players to do what the players can't do).

Designing your tactic is not an easy task, but it is not a necessarily difficult task either. This method will run you through a process of analysing your squad in order to create a tactic for yourself and for your team.

This is not necessarily complete and in time you should begin to notice things in the game and make adjustments accordingly, part of the fun of the game is learning and getting better at all the different aspects of the game (including creating and adjusting tactics).

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Formation

Your players should determine your formation, I look through my squad and find my star players and build a tactic around them, thus if my star players are 2 strikers, then I'd play with two up front. If my best player is a DM, then I'll play with a DM etc.

Your formation is your overall shape, it will determine where generally your players spend most of their time on the pitch, other instructions then move your players aroud these zones.

In your initial team meeting, your coaches will suggest a few formations that they feel work best for your team. You can take these or create your own formation based on your own analysis of the players. As an example I'll use Liverpool as this is the team I have put this philosophy into practice with most recently, and with such a low budget in the first season it really is a team that you have to make do with what you have.

Lets look at the back room advice:

backroomformation.jpg

Here my assistant manager believes we should be playing with a back four and DM and two MC's. I selected 4-5-1 and you'll see shortly why this is my prefferred option.

So off we go to the tactics screen, I select to view 'Assistant Reports' and sort by ability:

asstreports.jpg

As you will notice I've filled in a few positions already, what I've done is place my best players in their best positions to see how I fill up my selected formation. But Gerrard is an AMC you say, cheat you say. To a degree this is true, but if you look at Gerrard's position map you'll see he is an accomplished MC and in fact if you look at the reports you see that he has 4 stars in that position as well.

My alternative would be to put Gerrard as an AMC and bring Lucas up to MC in a 4-2-3-1 formation. I look at Lucas and I see, he is still a 3.5 star MC, in fact my coach tells me he's equally adept at playing there. So 4-2-3-1 (wide) it is.

You'll notice Maxi is sitting is sitting unselected. Unfortunately he isn't the best AMR I have, and he is not that good in his alternative positions, consequently he'll have to deal with being a rotation player (although a very able one).

I can easily fill in the RB and LB spots with Johnson and Enrique leaving just the MCL position unfilled. Henderson and Shelvey are young players who are both MC's with high potential and this role looks perfect for them to fill up. With Adam around for back-up and games where I want a little bit of experience.

Thus we end up with a formation that looks as follows (for now ignore the player roles, we'll get to that):

formationn.jpg

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Player Roles and Duties

Roles

Now its time to discuss player roles, i.e. what should I be making all these players do.

There are a few considerations you need to make with regards to this and I think over the course of the season you'll have to make adjustments as players get injured, rested etc (i.e. you could've started the season with Torres as and Advanced Forward and midway trade in for a Target Man like Carrol). Thus I don't want to go too much into creating the 'one tactic' as I think you need to work firstly on your shape and style and then get the players to perform the best they can within that style. An example would be Manchester United bring on Valencia or Park on for Nani, each of those plays the right wing position slightly differently but the front two of Hernandez/Rooney would still largely do their normal thing although now attacking different spaces.

A couple interesting points to note on player roles:

  • Firstly changing a striker to Target Man automatically switchs your Wingers to 'Roam from Position' regardless of philosophy.
  • Secondly player role does not affect your players mentality (go check it out for yourself if you don't believe me, but I assure there is no difference in mentality between an CM as a ball winning midfielder and an advanced playmaker). Do not confuse this with player duties or roles that can't be defensive or attacking.

If we go by Assistant Reports you end up with a reasonably balanced formation except for the inclusion of two Trequartista's. The one nice thing about Trequartista's is that they are generally very capable players and thus it is easy for us to suggest alternative options for these players. I have gone with a Deep Lying Forward support role for Suarez as I think combination with an overattacking AMC they'll cause confusion in front of the defence. But nearly any combination would work here as you can decide for yourself what positions and roles feel right for you.

Luckily for me in this example I have ended up with a well rounded team and specifically I don't just have attacking players in midfield positions but I do have a ball winning midfielder and a more attacking partner. I would consider looking at the overall look and feel of your tactic before proceeding. Do I have a ball winner in midfield (either a ball winning midfielder, a defensive CM or a box to box midfielder would suffice – you could potentially get away with a deep lying playmaker), use your understanding of the game to determine whether your tactic has enough methods of winning the ball as it does keeping it and using it to create chances.

Duties

Mostly player duties affects the players mentality, but it will also adjust other player instructions and this is different for each player. Interestly, as you'll see in the following section on Philosophy the effect on mentality can be overridden by overly fluid or rigid philosophies. The more balanced the philosophy you choose the more the duty will affect how the 'lines' affect each other.

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Philosophy

How philosophy affects tactical instructions

Philosophy is split into 5 different categories ranging from very rigid to very fluid. Per the description this is meant to affect how players interact in and out of their position, thus a rigid philosophy would have players sticking to their own roles, while Fluid philosophies encourage players to aid in additional areas of the field.

So how does this impact the players and their instructions?

Firstly let's look at mentality, one's first intuition would be that more fluidity would result in a more attacking mentality. In fact this is not necessarily the case, by adjusting the rigidity you push the 'lines' towards themselves, thus with a fluid mentality you will bring more attacking players closer to more defensive players and more defensive players towards the attack. The team begins to play closer together and thus mentalities are similar (in fact a very rigid or very fluid philosophy creates NO difference between an attacking or defending Wingback/Wing, and very fluid makes no difference in mentality for any midfielder). What a rigid philosophy does make attackers more attacking and defenders more defensive (and vice versa for fluid philosophies).

A balanced philosophy creates the greatest difference mentality based on duties while the Rigid/Fluid philosophies bring the 'lines' closer to themselves and the more Fluid philosophies bring the lines closer to each other. What this means is that Fluid philosophy decreases the mentality of the forwards in order to bring them closer to the midfield to increase the ability to move between the lines (and increases the mentality of defenders).

Creative freedom is affected as predicted with players having less creative freedom in rigid philosophies and more in the fluid philosophies. This is due to the players being able to free themselves from the shackles of tactical instructions and do more as they please and giving scope for them to join other areas of the field.

A very rigid philosophy increases the closing down of players slightly, at the same time fluid and very fluid philosophies both increase the closing down of the players (very fluid more so than fluid), thus the lowest level of pressing is found in the balanced and rigid philosophies.

How to determine your teams philosophy

Based on the above the clear defining point to determining philosophy your teams creativity and flair. The higher your teams average creative freedom and flair would impact your philosophy.

Typically speaking a defensive formation would be rigid (think Inter vs. Barcelona in the Champions League) and an attacking one fluid (Barcelona all the time), but there are rigid attacking formations(the Manchester United treble winning team) and a high pressing fluid formation would allow a manager to defend from the front.

Picking your philosophy is more than a matter of looking at attributes, Decisions is important for all philosophies and Creativity and Flair attributes can be overridden using the Roam from Position/Creative Freedom instructions. For me the one that is most important is how you want the 'lines' to interact, i.e. how compact or spread out you want your players to be vertically (as opposed to horizontally which is determined by width).

With direct passing you may want a rigid philosophy that pushes the strikers forward to get on the of moves (either balls over the top or direct balls to a target man). While short passing, would require more fluidity as you bring the lines closer together. Another factor is your formation - a 4-4-2 has big gaps between the lines (no DM or AM) so a short passing game would need more fluidity, while you could get away with a short passing Rigid philosophy in a 451/433 or 4-1-2-1-2 formation - it all depends.

One also needs to consider that one can adjust creative freedom through the team instructions and thus you could have a rigid formation with high creativity. Thus you could choose your philosophy on the basis of how big a gap you would like between the lines (e.g. if you have players in those gaps i.e. DM and AM then you could play a rigid philosophy to give those players more space) and then use the team instruction to increase the creative freedom.

So in this Liverpool example I would factor in the following:

  • Liverpool are media favourites for 5th (I know this not only from the game but my real life understanding of football)
  • My teams creativity is relatively high with most players above 13, but our flair is pretty average (Downing has a flair attribute of 5) – see below
  • My current shape has 3 attacking defenders but very little defensive midfielders and forwards.
  • There is a big gap between my defence and my midfield (no DM)
  • I'm playing the default passing style (see later)

creativityandflair.jpg

Thus I should be playing a slightly attacking game and I could get a little bit more defensively out of my attacking players. A rigid formation would nullify the effect of my attacking defenders by restraining them and would not get my midfielders involved in defensive duties as much as I'd like.

Overall I'd go for a fluid philosophy in this case as I'd like to play an attacking formation in general and with the big gap between my defence and midfield I'd like to bring those players closer together.

The following write-up by 5uare2 is a good breakdown of how Philosophy works:

Alright, it's badly-photoshopped screenshot time!

Taking a standard flat 4-4-2, with what some might consider to be the 'classical' roles for it, and keeping strategy on standard, I ran through each of the philosophies to show how they affect mentality. After I discuss mentality, we'll talk creative freedom. :)

yvqKO.jpg

(Edit: That's annoying, the image is small. Right-click and open it in a new tab so you can see the mentalities clearer.)

(Also: I kept the goalkeeper's mentality "fixed" on what he would have on a balanced philosophy, so that we can use that as a reference point throughout; the goalkeeper on defend will have the same mentality as the central defenders on defend.)

Important note: A player's role will not affect mentality; a ball-winning midfielder on support has the same mentality as an advanced playmaker on support, even if the latter might seem a more "attacking" player. A player's duty (defend, support, attack) is what affects their mentality.

Balanced - a player's mentality is only influenced by their player duty, nothing else; all my players on defend duties (DCL/R, MCL) have the same mentality, as do all my players on support duty (DL/R, MCR), and obviously my wide midfielders. Strikers operate a bit differently; my STCL, (advanced forward attack) has a higher mentality than my ML/MR (wide midfielder attack), while my STCR (deep-lying forward support) has a mentality matching players on defend. This exaggerated mentality split in strikers is so that one of them does play off the last defender while the other drops deeper to support. But you get the point; on balanced, mentality is governed only by player duty.

Rigid - players' mentalities are adjusted to be closer to those in the same 'band' or 'line' of formation as them. So my DL/DR are operating a bit more defensively, despite being on a 'support' duty; this will reduce the "channel" between full-back and central defender for opposition strikers to move into. Similarly in midfield, my attacking wide midfielders' mentalities are now dropped to the same as my supporting CM; even my defensive CM's mentality has increased from what it was on 'balanced philosophy'. Similarly, the gap between the two strikers' mentalities has reduced as well.

Thus, in a rigid formation, opposing teams should not find space "within" a line or band (e.g. between a DL and a DCL, or between a CM on defend and a CM on support/attack). However, because we've pulled these mentalities closer together, the players are less able to cover space "between" the lines/bands; for example, the CM on defend won't deal with an opposing AMC as effectively under a rigid philosophy as he would under a balanced one, and the AMC would find space between defence and midfield.

Very rigid - the effect is further enhanced; the back four all have the same mentality, the midfield four are now within 1 click of one another, and even my attacking striker has had his mentality pulled back greatly from "balanced philosophy". However, you'll note that the DCR/DCL's mentalities has actually increased slightly (remember, the goalkeeper is set to his mentality from "balanced philosophy", which is the same as the DCL/DCR had); in the very rigid formation, we not only want everyone in the same 'band/line' to have very similar mentalities, but we want the bands/lines' mentalities to not be too far apart from each other; thus, using the example above, even if the opposing AMC wasn't as covered by the CM on defend, the DCL/DCR have pushed up just slightly so there is less space for him to operate in.

On the other side, fluid; here, it is interesting to compare with what happened on 'rigid' - again, players in the same 'line' or 'band' have their mentalities brought closer to one another, but overall, players' mentalities are higher on fluid than they are on rigid. So you can think of it as a rigid philosophy asking attacking players to curb their instincts to help the team keep shape and defend, while a fluid philosophy asks the defensive players to engage more in attack

Finally, very fluid; the entire team have the same mentality, except for that exaggerated split between the strikers. Here, the team are a complete unit - your central defenders will look for attacking passes as much as your wide midfielders, who themselves will play the simple and safe passes as often as their defensive counterparts. Everyone contributes to everything, making this a difficult philosophy to employ successfully.

Phew! That's the hard part: creative freedom is very simple :p Basically, the more rigid a philosophy, the less creative freedom it allows, and the more fluid, the more creative freedom. But, you can modify the amount of creative freedom given to each philosophy using team instructions for creative freedom; for example, a 'fluid' philosophy that asks its players to be 'more disciplined' will actually give players less creative freedom than a 'rigid' philosophy that's 'more expressive'.

So in your case, you have players who have low flair and creativity; fair enough, but that doesn't mean you should use a rigid philosophy. Think about where your team attacks from, and where its defensive players are, and also the types of formations you'll come up against. If most of the teams in your league use players 'between the lines' of a 4-4-2, you may want to try and reduce space there. If your team relies on attacking full-backs, then balanced is the only philosophy that won't restrict them from attacking. Choose the right philosophy first, then use "more expressive"/"more disciplined" to alter the creative freedom in line with your players' abilities.

Sorry for the wordy post - I hope this is actually helpful!

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Strategy

Your starting strategy affects mentality, passing style, closing down, tackling, marking, tight marking, and roam from position. In addition it changes the defensive line, the width, tempo and time wasting of your team.

So how does it do this, in general it adjusts these as you would imagine, as you increase the attacking nature of your strategy you get the following adjustments (the opposite is true for a decrease in the above):

  • Increases mentality
  • Increases closing down
  • Makes some players tackle harder
  • Gets more players in zonal defence
  • Gets less players on tight marking
  • And increases the players who roam from there position

In addition, it:

  • Increases your defensive line
  • Increaces the width
  • Increases the tempo, and
  • Decreases the time wasting of your team.

Finally the strategy determines whether your team will counter attack or not, effectively you'll you counter attack for all strategies except Contain, Standard, Control and Attacking (interestingly you'll counter attack with Overload). I recall a save where I had an attacking strategy and counter attack was set to on, so it may depend on other variables.

The other factors are adjustable via other means, so while you may want to play a standard closing down game, if you have an attacking strategy you may switch closing down to stand-off more in order to net out at a standard closing down.

As stated earlier we are a top 5 team so a more attacking strategy would be appropriate, probably looking at a Control or Attacking strategy (probably have two formations for each option to rotate for home/away and vs. better teams). I've gone with a control strategy, as I feel attacking is best for teams that are significantly better than the rest of the league. I will adjust to attacking to get a late goal and for games where I'm clear favourites.

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Playing Style

Playing style is split into several categories, and these affect the tactical instructions as one would expect it to. Not much discussion required on what the style does, but I'll discuss here what you should look for in determining your teams styles:

Passing

The key determinant here is the passing attribute. Additional consideration must be made to Technique, Anticipation, Creativity and Decisions. The higher these attributes the more direct the passing can be.

Passing Style doesn't operate independently and shortening the passing will decrease your teams width and tempo (and vice versa). Consider your passing style in conjunction with other factors and how you would like your team to play. In most cases passing should be adjust during the game as you find your players finding or misplacing their passes.

I've gone for a default passing style and I'll adjust this on a game by game basis, and perhaps settle on something that works over the season.

Creative Freedom

If your team is blessed with excessive flair and creativity, you could make an even more creative tactic. Secondary attributes to consider include Decisions, Passing and Technique. Remember that the more Creative Freedom you give your players the less they are going to follow your instructions, so you may want to be selective on which players you give high Creative Freedom to.

Alternatively you could adjust your teams creative freedom in a rigid or fluid philosophy as dictated by how compact you'd like your team to play.

For example, a very fluid 442 with creative freedom set to 'More Disciplined' would result in a high pressing defend from the front tactic with your players NOT doing as they feel (even though it would be in contradiction with your philosophy).

Since my players flair is low, I've toned down the creative freedom to 'More Disciplined'. This has given me the following:

creativefreedom.jpg

which is absolutely perfect when I look at the combination of creativity and flair with the only exception being Suarez whom I've asked to be a Deep Lying Forward instead of Trequartista (otherwise he'd have the same creative freedom as Gerrard) – I may come back to this and manually adjust the creative freedom slider higher to give Suarez more freedom to match his attributes.

Closing Down

Does what it says, increases a players closing down slider and in addition it pulls back the defensive line for lower pressing and pushes it forward for low pressing. The things I'd consider here is your teams stamina and in addition how much you'd like your players to roam out of position as higher closing down will result in players moving out of position to chase down the ball. In addition you would have to look at the pace of your backline as a team with slow defenders would do well to defend deeper and should thus play with lower closing down. Players will also benefit from high Anticipation, Determination, Work Rate and (as always) Decisions.

Going back to our very fluid 442 with more disciplined creative freedom and now closing down set to 'Stand-Off More' would result in our team playing very close together, not pressing, not chasing around for the ball but rather holding position and playing a little deep.

In this way, we've created a very fluid 'park the bus' formation. Now what is the difference between this and just a rigid philosophy and other options set to default? Well in essence you'd have a slightly higher line and bigger gaps between our lines, since the fluidity of our tactic affects not only the overrideable closing down and creative freedom styles but also the relative mentalities of our players and either condenses or expands our players in a vertical sense.

In the Liverpool example, I'm creating a fluid attacking formation and my defence has an average pace of 14.00 which ranks it 5th in the league. In addition the team has high stamina and as such I can create a formation with higher pressing. I am concerned that I have a small squad and thus I would like to preserve my players, in addition I've set a more attacking mentality and this has already increased my closing down. Therefore I've gone with a default closing down although I could arguably increase my closing down. The result of this is is as follows:

closingdown.jpg

Tackling

Players with high Tackling, Aggresion, Bravery, Anticipation, Composure, Decisions and Concentration are best suited to More Aggressive Tackling styles, but be aware of the chance of additional cards.

Another time to play with this is if your opponents have low bravery. The only other suggestion I can have on this is that if you want your players to maintain their shape and not end up on their backsides and thus create a hole for your opponents to exploit I'd set this to 'More Cautious'.

I'm going to leave this at default and look on a game by game basis to determine whether or not we're doing well in the tackle (up the aggression) or not (and thus stand-off a bit).

Marking

Marking is split into two general categories - Man Marking and Zonal Marking.

Man Marking will get your players sticking to individual players and thus giving them less time on the ball, the downside is that your attacking players may end up out of position following their man on defence and thus hampering the ability to perform quick counters. Man Marking will require your players to have high Marking, Tackling and Concentration.

Zonal Marking is better for holding your defensive shape and would thus provide less 'gaps' for opposition to expose, since your players are unlikely to be dragged out of position when players leave their zone. Zonal defensive systems will require players with high Anticipation, Concentration, Decisions and Positioning.

Crossing

Crossing works by taking into account whether you have a target man and the players individual roles. In general though, if you have a big man to aim for then you want to float crosses and if your strikers are small then drill crosses would be the preferred option otherwise set to default for average strikers.

Since my main striker is Suarez (Jumping 12, Heading 12) I have gone for drill crosses as I feel he'll be smaller than most defenders. But I reserve the right to float crosses when I bring on Carroll (Jumping 18, Heading 17).

Roaming

Roaming changes whether players (depending on player role) roam from their position, some roles will always roam, others will never roam. Play this if your team has high Creativity, Flair and Off the Ball movement, and obviously turn it down if you are playing a rigid hold your position tactic. In addition be cognisant of the Decision attribute of those players that you have set to Roaming on.

You can easily see your teams mental attributes by going to the squad screen and set your view to Attributes → Mental.

mentaln.jpg

In my teams case my players have generally high creativity, off the ball and decision making and thus I've set Roaming to 'More Roaming', although in the case of my team this is indistinguishable from the default setting. Again for Suarez I may consider adjusting this individually for him.

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Tactic creating skin

Based on the default dark skin, I've created a skin that I hope will assist others in creating their own tactics - more specifically for checking player instructions. It also includes furiousuk's slider views from here.

Screen shots:

ttbi.jpg

22620512.jpg

Download link

XML file only here (place in your favourite skin's panels folder as is - if you are overwriting another file then this may not work for you)

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This is an excellent thread. Bookmarked and I will definitely be following it.

It has inspired me to start a new save with my beloved Man Utd and create my own tactic after using other peoples' tactics for the past few years.

Well done LlamaZA :)

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This is an excellent thread. Bookmarked and I will definitely be following it.

It has inspired me to start a new save with my beloved Man Utd and create my own tactic after using other peoples' tactics for the past few years.

Well done LlamaZA :)

Thanks, and I hope you find it a rewarding experience.

Would love to see what you came up with and why :)

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Okay well, this is the overall setup I have come up with:

7CLdv.jpg

Firstly, I know that Man Utd are suited to a 4-4-2 (with pushed up wingers) but I prefer the stability of 5 in midfield. Also, based on Rooney's attributes, he would do well as an AP and Berbatov as a Treq so I figured I could re-train the both of them to play at AMC and have Hernandez, Welbeck or Owen as a Poacher. Also, my MC's are suited to BWM (Fletcher/Gibson/Anderson?) and DLP (Giggs/Carrick/Cleverley?) roles hence why I chose those in midfield. My full-backs are generally attacking in nature but I want them not be caught too far upfield hence they are on a support duty. Lastly, I have one Winger on support just so I do not have too many players pushing too far up the pitch and the other is on attack.

I decided on a Control strategy because we are generally favourites in the majority of matches we play but I have also added a Counter tactic with the same setup to the match prep as well as a 4-1-2-2-1 (DMC - DLP/D, MCL - AP/S, MCR - BTB/S) for matches against tougher opposition.

I, like you, prefer Zonal Marking and enjoy watching my players play with more creative freedom hence I have chosen "More Expressive" and also "Drill Crosses" as I will be using a Poacher up front and they are generally not great in the air.

That is the basic setup, I have not changed any player personal instructions but am thinking of maybe changing the FB's to WB - Support to add a little more to the attack and also possibly changing one of the Wingers to an Inside Forward, not sure what your thoughts are?

I know this is different to your approach in that I have created a tactic based on how I want to play rather than what suits the current players but I enjoy it more that way :D

Edit: I forgot to mention why I chose a Balanced philosophy and the reason for that is I am not sure whether to play rigidly or fluidly but will experiment with it a little before deciding so thought it best to leave that on it's default setting. Also, I set the Primary Playmaker to "None" because in the event that he is marked out of the game, it will be a problem but I intend to experiment with that as well.

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I don't think there's a necessarily right or wrong way (there are some obviously wrong ways) so I think factoring in your own style is part of the game. Overall I think you have a good setup (and its close to what I would've created - except I went all out with the 4-2-4 with Rooney/Berba playing as deep lying forwards), and it should bring you some success depending on how you man manage your team.

A couple other points as to how I would've gone a bit differently to you:

You could get a bit of joy out of Welbeck as an Advanced Forward if you are willing to adjust your tactic as your players change.

United may be one of those teams suited to having an Attacking strategy as they are clear favourites, with a Control/Counter option for the games against the other big 4.

I would have Nani and Young as Inside Forwards with Wingbacks behind them, you're playing with a Poacher so wings aren't essential. This is the part where you have to step back from all the individual settings and determine whether your tactic is logically sound.

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Okay, so I changed the AMR/AML to IF's and the DR/DL to WB's as I do have attacking full backs and there are more of them available than defensive ones. I set the striker as an Advanced Forward, as you suggested, because he was becoming a little isolated.

Also, I have removed long shots from all the players as I do not like them doing that. I have also setup an Attacking variant of the tactic and added it to Match Prep (removed the 4-1-2-2-1)

What do you think of having on IF on attack and the other on support? Should I set them both to attack as the AMC is set to support.

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Great thread LlamaZA, its a daunting subject to explain. It will also help those that are look to create their own tactics but don't know where to start.

However, you are relying on the staff for some of the information where the more experienced FM player would ignore the staff information as "misplaced". A good example is Kuyt, best position is AMR and best role is Advanced Playmaker and I would never play him there unless I had injuries to other players.

You also get a slight confrontation between following the process verses your own philosophies on how the team will play. I think you mention it in your post.

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Okay, so I changed the AMR/AML to IF's and the DR/DL to WB's as I do have attacking full backs and there are more of them available than defensive ones. I set the striker as an Advanced Forward, as you suggested, because he was becoming a little isolated.

Also, I have removed long shots from all the players as I do not like them doing that. I have also setup an Attacking variant of the tactic and added it to Match Prep (removed the 4-1-2-2-1)

What do you think of having on IF on attack and the other on support? Should I set them both to attack as the AMC is set to support.

You'll need to play around with settings, but with one IF support and one as attack you'll be able to see the differences and gauge what you want.

Most of these adjustments will come from watching the game and noting how the play differs between the two. There is no right/wrong answer here, but I'd be tempted to have the AMC on attack to get him closer to the Striker and one IF on attack and the other on support.

Symmetry is not important - so its equally feasible to have a Winger and an Inside Fwd (with various attack/support settings) to stretch the play and give your opponents something to think about.

The things you need to look at are:

  • what is the player good at, i.e. can be play as an IF/Winger, does he do better on Support/Attacking would either be exposing a weakness or avoiding a strength
  • what do I need/want from that player - does he need to stretch play, is he looking to support the striker, is he meant to act as an outlet for the midfield or is he meant to connect the midfield and strikers.

None of this is immediately answerable, but part of the enjoyment of the game for me is the continuous adjustment of my tactic as I find strengths and weaknesses and even as I change personal.

You just need to look how Ferguson has adjusted his tactics as he's learnt in Europe and as his key players have changed from Cantona through Ruud to Ronaldo and now Rooney. Each having a different focal point and method of getting the best out of the best players. Carrick is a different type of DM to Keane, you can't just set him to Box to Box like Keane, Carrick is a slow passer of the ball, not a blood and thunder run around the park player that Keane was. As the seasons progress your tactic will and the continuous progression of your tactic will be what keeps each season interesting.

Great thread LlamaZA, its a daunting subject to explain. It will also help those that are look to create their own tactics but don't know where to start.

However, you are relying on the staff for some of the information where the more experienced FM player would ignore the staff information as "misplaced". A good example is Kuyt, best position is AMR and best role is Advanced Playmaker and I would never play him there unless I had injuries to other players.

You also get a slight confrontation between following the process verses your own philosophies on how the team will play. I think you mention it in your post.

Thanks, it was an interesting write up and through the process I think I've learned a lot more about the game and designing tactics myself.

Interesting that you discount Kuyt as an Advanced Playmaker, as I'm finding quite a bit of success with him there. I don't think the staff information is misplaced, unfortunately I don't have access to one of those player analysis tools that are around (that create a score for the player based on attributes required by the position) - I would be interested in what one of those pulled out for him. The question would be, if you didn't know about Kuyt in real life, would you doubt the coaches analysis?

I do agree that you may get a confrontation between how you want to play and how your tactic would work out if you put the players first, but that's where I feel a good manager would be flexible and slowly bring in the players to play the way he'd like to.

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Interesting that you discount Kuyt as an Advanced Playmaker, as I'm finding quite a bit of success with him there. I don't think the staff information is misplaced, unfortunately I don't have access to one of those player analysis tools that are around (that create a score for the player based on attributes required by the position) - I would be interested in what one of those pulled out for him. The question would be, if you didn't know about Kuyt in real life, would you doubt the coaches analysis?

Nah, you don't need one of those player analysis tools to realise Kuyt is not a playmaker, he can't pass and creativity is pants :) I think thats the difference between trusting just the staff reports and actually analysing the attributes. The staff reports, roughly, just adds all the relevent fields for a role and averages. It does this for each role in that position (AMR in this case) and the highest number is the winner. The problem with Kuyt case is he has big numbers for his mental attributes and this screws the averages.

I played Kuty as my primary striker and he was very successful because his mental stats are excellent for a striker

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With the Holland squad Kuyt plays a role I would consider to be a AMR/L Advanced Playmaker and performs it, usually, very well. I think you have to consider the fact that his mental stats will let him play most positions and rolls at an acceptable level.

Great thread btw :)

the op gave me some insights into tactics so that's always good. I usualy force a style of play on my squad so I don't use the exact methods of the op. But I certainly helps me to set up my tactics and to choice my in game tweaks :)

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Great thread, Llama. Thank you for this. There have been similar threads before but none that really explain selecting a formation, team instructions and player roles as well as this. Maybe at some point you could elaborate more on when it is advisable to modify specific player instructions. I know this is a little more specific to different teams & players, but sometimes it’s difficult to know what to look out for that would indicate a player’s instructions should be modified.

And along those lines…”starting” strategy. I see people talk about their tactics a lot and they seem to use the same strategy throughout. Either that or they modify each player’s instructions so much that changing the strategy likely has little to no effect on the team. There was a thread shortly after FM11 came out that explained when to use which strategy. Something along the lines of: When you’re at home and big favorites use attacking, when you’re away and underdogs use counter. It was a lot more in depth than that though. And then it suggested changing this as the game went on depending on whether you needed to chase a goal or be more defensive. I have used this and it has served me very well. And partly because I use this, and partly because I’m not smart/patient enough to keep messing with them, I generally leave a lot of player instructions untouched – because when I change the team strategy, I want it to have a big effect on how each player plays. Along with the use of shouts too, which I’m trying to get better at. What are your thoughts on this?

I also feel like most of the super-effective-diablo-destroy-every-team-8-0 tactics have heavily modified player instructions and these are generally just there to exploit the ME as much as possible. The end result might be effective, but it’s going to be effective with pretty much any team. That’s not realistic and it’s not football. I download the occasional tactic, but more to understand which basic settings work – and why they work. The best tactic I’ve made on FM12 is a 4-1-2-1-2. It worked great but I didn’t really understand why. Reading this thread has made me understand a little more why rigid was better for that formation with the players I had – which I never really understood before. I generally do start the way you start – by looking at my best players and trying to model my tactics around those players. But now I understand more about the team settings and have a better idea on how to proceed from there. So again, a big thank you!

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I have put Kuyt's attributes into a Role Calculator if you're interested:

ZKmfx.jpg

Thanks.

Clearly Adv PM is not his best role overall (14.67 average, compared to some over 15), but it is his best role in his best position (AMR).

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Great thread, Llama. Thank you for this. There have been similar threads before but none that really explain selecting a formation, team instructions and player roles as well as this. Maybe at some point you could elaborate more on when it is advisable to modify specific player instructions. I know this is a little more specific to different teams & players, but sometimes it’s difficult to know what to look out for that would indicate a player’s instructions should be modified.

Thanks for the feedback, I'm glad I could help.

I will look into the individual player instruction modification issue, but to be honest I barely adjust this myself so I wouldn't have much to say on this at this stage - that's not to say I couldn't put my mind to it and learn something new :)

And along those lines…”starting” strategy. I see people talk about their tactics a lot and they seem to use the same strategy throughout. Either that or they modify each player’s instructions so much that changing the strategy likely has little to no effect on the team. There was a thread shortly after FM11 came out that explained when to use which strategy. Something along the lines of: When you’re at home and big favorites use attacking, when you’re away and underdogs use counter. It was a lot more in depth than that though. And then it suggested changing this as the game went on depending on whether you needed to chase a goal or be more defensive. I have used this and it has served me very well. And partly because I use this, and partly because I’m not smart/patient enough to keep messing with them, I generally leave a lot of player instructions untouched – because when I change the team strategy, I want it to have a big effect on how each player plays. Along with the use of shouts too, which I’m trying to get better at. What are your thoughts on this?

I couldn't agree more. As I stated this was intended to be used by those of us that utilise the new tactic method and not the 'classic' method. This gives us as managers access to a lot more tools including the shouts and makes adjustments to our team strategy more meaningful.

Adjusting your tactics mid match is outside the scope of this thread as it will take into account a lot more pieces of information and I'd be worried it would clutter the point of this thread. That's not to say there's no place for your suggestion and I'll have to see how best to include it if I do (or start a new thread on in-game adjustments).

I also feel like most of the super-effective-diablo-destroy-every-team-8-0 tactics have heavily modified player instructions and these are generally just there to exploit the ME as much as possible. The end result might be effective, but it’s going to be effective with pretty much any team. That’s not realistic and it’s not football. I download the occasional tactic, but more to understand which basic settings work – and why they work. The best tactic I’ve made on FM12 is a 4-1-2-1-2. It worked great but I didn’t really understand why. Reading this thread has made me understand a little more why rigid was better for that formation with the players I had – which I never really understood before. I generally do start the way you start – by looking at my best players and trying to model my tactics around those players. But now I understand more about the team settings and have a better idea on how to proceed from there. So again, a big thank you!

I'm glad that you found use in my post

On another note, I'll be leaving tomorrow to go on holiday so replies wont be as forthcoming but if interest is still high I'll be back to keep this going.

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Great thread! Kudos to you my friend. Helped me out a lot this thread. Made my own tactic for RB Salzburg thats working really well.

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An excellent thread, gret work :)

You know me though, I like to get a discussion going and understand how other people work. So I've got a few questions and I know you like an healthy debate so here goes :)

I was hoping that when you mentioned this thread that you'd pick someone who wasn't an 'obvious' and easy choice. I would have liked to see you go into detail about creating a tactic for a team who don't have class players and able to play a host of positions. Tht's just my preference though and I can understand to some extent why you chose Liverpool.

Now its time to discuss player roles, i.e. what should I be making all these players do.

There are a few considerations you need to make with regards to this and I think over the course of the season you'll have to make adjustments as players get injured, rested etc (i.e. you could've started the season with Torres as and Advanced Forward and midway trade in for a Target Man like Carrol). Thus I don't want to go too much into creating the 'one tactic' as I think you need to work firstly on your shape and style and then get the players to perform the best they can within that style. An example would be Manchester United bring on Valencia or Park on for Nani, each of those plays the right wing position slightly differently but the front two of Hernandez/Rooney would still largely do their normal thing although now attacking different spaces.

In what unforced scenarios do you change player roles during a game? Do you watch parts or whole of the game and adjust based on what you see?

If we go by Assistant Reports you end up with a reasonably balanced formation except for the inclusion of two Trequartista's. The one nice thing about Trequartista's is that they are generally very capable players and thus it is easy for us to suggest alternative options for these players. I have gone with a Deep Lying Forward support role for Suarez as I think combination with an overattacking AMC they'll cause confusion in front of the defence. But nearly any combination would work here as you can decide for yourself what positions and roles feel right for you.

I actually think you've done the right thing with Suarez and I'm glad you went with the Deep Lying Forward. Not many people tend to employ them in their formations judging by threads I've seen on here. I like that you have though, as that is what I'd have done.

My teams creativity is relatively high with most players above 13, but our flair is pretty average (Downing has a flair attribute of 5) – see below

For a team like Liverpool I actually think 13 creativty is quite low. How many of the team are higher than 13? I think for a creative side expected to finish in the top3 you're looking at a minimum of 15 for the creative players minimum imo and from past experience.

The key determinant here is the passing attribute. The higher this attribute the more direct the passing can be. Passing doesn't operate independently and shortening the passing will decrease your teams width and tempo (and vice versa). Consider your passing style in conjunction with other factors and how you would like your team to play. In most cases passing should be adjust during the game as you find your players finding or misplacing their passes.

I've gone for a default passing style and I'll adjust this on a game by game basis, and perhaps settle on something that works over the season.

Agree but the higher the passing stat the more 'mixed' he should be imo as you're not limiting what he can do during a game. This is vital in creative players if you don't want to hinder his passing options.

Tackling

High tackling and aggression and feel free to set this to 'More Aggressive' but be aware of the chance of additional cards. Another time to play with this is if your opponents have low bravery. The only other suggestion I can have on this is that if you want your players to maintain their shape and not end up on their backsides and thus create a hole for your opponents to exploit I'd set this to 'More Cautious'.

I'm going to leave this at default and look on a game by game basis to determine whether or not we're doing well in the tackle (up the aggression) or not (and thus stand-off a bit).

I'd add anticipation to that list too, because if he cant anticipate the player movement he's screwed before he even started.

In my teams case my players have both high creativity and high decision making and thus I've set Roaming to 'More Roaming', although in the case of my team this is indistinguishable from the default setting. Again for Suarez I may consider adjusting this individually for him.

Why? roaming is an off the ball action so naturally the most important attribute is off the ball. Creativity stat is an on the ball action and only works when someone has the ball. So it doesn't naturally mean because someone is creative they should roam more. Someone who isn't creative can use the space just as good as a more creative player.

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I have put Kuyt's attributes into a Role Calculator if you're interested:

ZKmfx.jpg

were did you get the attributes Role Calculator

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Looks like Kuyt could make a really good defensive midfielder by what that calculator says. The mean is slightly lower than on wide midfielder but the median is much higher. Which attributes does he lack to make the mean drop so much?

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Finally the strategy determines whether your team will counter attack or not, effectively you'll you counter attack for all strategies except Contain, Standard, Control and Attacking (interestingly you'll counter attack with Overload). I recall a save where I had an attacking strategy and counter attack was set to on, so it may depend on other variables.

This has slightly changed in 12.1. It used to be that you countered on Counter, Attacking and Overload. However, on reading some more on tactical methodologies we felt we'd got it wrong, so counter was removed from Attacking and added to Defend. It is still in Overload as the team is trying to get forward in whatever way possible.

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An excellent thread, gret work :)

You know me though, I like to get a discussion going and understand how other people work. So I've got a few questions and I know you like an healthy debate so here goes :)

Thanks

Love to discuss, so let's get at it :)

I was hoping that when you mentioned this thread that you'd pick someone who wasn't an 'obvious' and easy choice. I would have liked to see you go into detail about creating a tactic for a team who don't have class players and able to play a host of positions. Tht's just my preference though and I can understand to some extent why you chose Liverpool.

Honestly, the reason I chose Liverpool is that it was my latest save and the one freshest in my mind when it came to creating a tactic on this basis. I will add some other tactics I create as and when I create them (or perhaps take requests), but probably not to the same detail.

The Liverpool team is a nice one to show the theory as they don't have many 'funnies' that you have to deal that would derail the discussion away from the main point. So yes, they're an 'obvious team' but for the purpose of this discussion they've been brilliant :)

In what unforced scenarios do you change player roles during a game? Do you watch parts or whole of the game and adjust based on what you see?

I watch extended or key depending on the game/my mood. I don't really adjust player roles during game other than for substitutions where I'll change a player role to match the incoming player. I may additionally adjust some team settings to match the new player (if for example I'm bring on Carroll) or to be slightly more defensive/attacking.

I sort of understand the question, but as I've mentioned elsewhere, in-game adjustments are slightly out of the mandate of this post as I wanted this to merely be a discussion on creating a tactic so that people can get started. In-game adjustments is a very related topic, but not one that I can do justice in a post like this but that would needs its own in-depth discussion.

I actually think you've done the right thing with Suarez and I'm glad you went with the Deep Lying Forward. Not many people tend to employ them in their formations judging by threads I've seen on here. I like that you have though, as that is what I'd have done.

The DLF and Attacking Inside Forwards is a great combination, and Suarez is exactly the sort of player that can cause trouble just in front of the defense.

For a team like Liverpool I actually think 13 creativty is quite low. How many of the team are higher than 13? I think for a creative side expected to finish in the top3 you're looking at a minimum of 15 for the creative players minimum imo and from past experience.

True, but in context of the premier league its still reasonably high, and all the attacking players are 13+ (if you look at the graphic just below where your quote came from). Remember adding to creative freedom is still a relative task and thus players with poor creative freedom are still likely to be given uncreative player specific roles.

Also I don't think there is any point getting into number specific details, as I checked my creativity vs. the league (not near my PC so can't check the save now) but as I recall we were 4th or 5th most creative in the league. Each league and situation will be different.

In the end though I went with 'More Disciplined' because when added to flair, my team was probably not suited to a creative style, so I think its a matter of looking at it on an overall basis and perhaps through experience your 'gut feel' will become more accurate.

Agree but the higher the passing stat the more 'mixed' he should be imo as you're not limiting what he can do during a game. This is vital in creative players if you don't want to hinder his passing options.

Passing determines accuracy if I'm not mistaken and thus the ability to hit long passes, whereas the choice to be mixed is more linked to decision making, creativity and flair? I could be wrong on these stats, but still I think I'd be more inclined to check my passing not in relation to certain attributes but overall style and player form on the day (Barcelona are great passers of the ball but play a short passing game, same with Arsenal).

Just on that, perhaps greater passing should result in a shorter passing game as it will result in your players passing more (i.e. playing to their strengths). What you think?

I'd add anticipation to that list too, because if he cant anticipate the player movement he's screwed before he even started.

Mental attributes come in to play for all the playing styles, so you can never ignore them completely. BTW are you suggesting aggressive tackling for players with high anticipation?

Why? roaming is an off the ball action so naturally the most important attribute is off the ball. Creativity stat is an on the ball action and only works when someone has the ball. So it doesn't naturally mean because someone is creative they should roam more. Someone who isn't creative can use the space just as good as a more creative player.

Is roaming not more a movement in position. I see your point, but my guess would be that off the ball controls to a large degree the players movement in and around his position (breaking the offside trap, coming short to collect, moving into spaces) whereas roaming allows your player to move into the centre or pull out wide before checking his movement in that position. A creative player would then be able to use this space effectively.

I think off the ball may be part of this but as an example I'd say Owen (back in Liverpool days) would have had great off the ball movement, but you wouldn't want him roaming as you'd want him on the last line of defence at all times.

I must say for the most part I've used what the Tactics screen as indicates as the most important attribute, lots of other factors obviously come into play but I think SI's default attribute analysis is probably best for a first pass analysis.

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This has slightly changed in 12.1. It used to be that you countered on Counter, Attacking and Overload. However, on reading some more on tactical methodologies we felt we'd got it wrong, so counter was removed from Attacking and added to Defend. It is still in Overload as the team is trying to get forward in whatever way possible.

Ok that explains why I couldn't reproduce the Counter Attack on Attacking strategy :)

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Honestly, the reason I chose Liverpool is that it was my latest save and the one freshest in my mind when it came to creating a tactic on this basis. I will add some other tactics I create as and when I create them (or perhaps take requests), but probably not to the same detail.

The Liverpool team is a nice one to show the theory as they don't have many 'funnies' that you have to deal that would derail the discussion away from the main point. So yes, they're an 'obvious team' but for the purpose of this discussion they've been brilliant :)

Yeah I understand why you choose Liverpool, for illustration purposes they are an excellent side to choose and the fact it was your current save make it even more relevant to yourself. I actually find Liverpool a very good side to practise different types of formations with, I think it's because their squad is a lot more varied than most Prem teams meaning you've more scope to test different types of players and watch how they react.

I watch extended or key depending on the game/my mood. I don't really adjust player roles during game other than for substitutions where I'll change a player role to match the incoming player. I may additionally adjust some team settings to match the new player (if for example I'm bring on Carroll) or to be slightly more defensive/attacking.

I sort of understand the question, but as I've mentioned elsewhere, in-game adjustments are slightly out of the mandate of this post as I wanted this to merely be a discussion on creating a tactic so that people can get started. In-game adjustments is a very related topic, but not one that I can do justice in a post like this but that would needs its own in-depth discussion.

No worries I understand, but I still think it was good touching upon adjustments as it goes hand in hand with creating a tactic. I'm suprised I was the first to mention it actually. But yeah a seperate topic will be better suited and I hope to have one up sometime soon, it's half done already just need the time to add to it :)

The DLF and Attacking Inside Forwards is a great combination, and Suarez is exactly the sort of player that can cause trouble just in front of the defense.

Yups the best combo on the game imo. Although lately I've found an inside forward (aml), DLF and a winger (AMR) to give me eveb better results than I'm used to. I know it all depends on the shape you play, but if you've not tried it yet give it a whirl, the attacking movement is first class.

Passing determines accuracy if I'm not mistaken and thus the ability to hit long passes, whereas the choice to be mixed is more linked to decision making, creativity and flair? I could be wrong on these stats, but still I think I'd be more inclined to check my passing not in relation to certain attributes but overall style and player form on the day (Barcelona are great passers of the ball but play a short passing game, same with Arsenal).

I'd personally choose technique and decisions over creativity and flair with regards to passing. Creativity and flair help if its a pass an average player wouldn't see. Creativity and flair is more about seeing a pass that 'doesn't exist' so to speak. Which isn't always a good thing, that's why technique and decisions are vital more so.

I do agree though that the better the attribute you should encourage short passing to try get them to pass more. Makes perfect sense to do this :). But as I normally play a certain way, I find mixed to better suit if there good at passes so they can keep up with play and try different passing ranges.

But I guess like you stated earlier in the thread its down to preferences and how you want the team to play. And rightly so.

Mental attributes come in to play for all the playing styles, so you can never ignore them completely. BTW are you suggesting aggressive tackling for players with high anticipation?

I find higher anticipation players to be better at it yes and when you think about it, it makes sense.

Is roaming not more a movement in position. I see your point, but my guess would be that off the ball controls to a large degree the players movement in and around his position (breaking the offside trap, coming short to collect, moving into spaces) whereas roaming allows your player to move into the centre or pull out wide before checking his movement in that position. A creative player would then be able to use this space effectively.

Off the ball determines how well he is at roaming, off the ball covers everything movement related when you have possession and the player doesn't. It's his ability at been able to make the most of his movement. Roaming is just a freerole and is still controlled by off the ball.

Ideally you want the more creative players who you want to see a lot of the ball roaming. If you want a player to do a specific task, then I'd encourage to not allow him to roam as he might not be able to do it properly.

I must say for the most part I've used what the Tactics screen as indicates as the most important attribute, lots of other factors obviously come into play but I think SI's default attribute analysis is probably best for a first pass analysis.

The views? I actually find a lot of them are wrong and out of date, it hasn't been updated at all since CM days. I think some of them need changing for others.

Anyways thanks for the time to reply I appreciate it. And again, a great thread and one that everyone struggling with FM should be directed to :)

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cleon do you leave your dlf on default settings?i am almost playing the same attacking formation.ml-att(winger),poacher,dlf(support) and amr-att(inside forward)with the idea that my inside forward moves into the position vacated by the dlf who is dropping deeper,i have seen it work on occassion but when i look at the heat map the two players in question are more often than not almost alongside each other.should this be expected or should the dlf be deeper?

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LlamaZA did you have any good 4-2-3-1 for patch 12.04 ?

I've made two 4-2-3-1 tactics that have both worked well - both are very different as they are designed for different teams with different players with different strengths and weaknesses.

There is no universal tactic so work out what suits your team and design from there.

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Currently managing AFC Wimbledon. Took over with them in relegation in League 2. I failed to keep them up. Played my first pre season game v Thurcock in the league below and lost 3-1.

Came across this thread and followed it to fit in with my team. Just played my first game with the new tactic v Chesterfield from League One (2 league above) and won 3-0! Hopefully the start of something special!

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Currently managing AFC Wimbledon. Took over with them in relegation in League 2. I failed to keep them up. Played my first pre season game v Thurcock in the league below and lost 3-1.

Came across this thread and followed it to fit in with my team. Just played my first game with the new tactic v Chesterfield from League One (2 league above) and won 3-0! Hopefully the start of something special!

I hope the form continues :) let me know how it works out for you

Will be looking at all the comments and see what I can/should add/change from my opening posts.

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I hope the form continues :) let me know how it works out for you

Will be looking at all the comments and see what I can/should add/change from my opening posts.

Sadly the form didnt continue. I started the season poorly but in the end we just missed out on the playoffs. I'm still quite pleased though as we lost a lot of players before the season started and had a small squad. Despite this I really enjoyed the season and the board were pleased. I'm looking forward to building a foundation to get AFC Wimbledon back in League football!

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2nd Season with AFC Wimbledon - Finished 2nd in the league but lost 6-2 on agg to Stockport in the play-off Semi Final. Also got to FA Cup 3rd round and lost to Sunderland (5th in Prem at the time) 2-0. An own goal and penalty knocked me out.

Next season is going to be tough. The board have reduced my wage bill so I am now £3k p/week over the budget.

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2nd Season with AFC Wimbledon - Finished 2nd in the league but lost 6-2 on agg to Stockport in the play-off Semi Final. Also got to FA Cup 3rd round and lost to Sunderland (5th in Prem at the time) 2-0. An own goal and penalty knocked me out.

Next season is going to be tough. The board have reduced my wage bill so I am now £3k p/week over the budget.

Not sure if this is above or below expectation - but seems good unless AFC Wimbledon were expected to dominate the league so well done!

Made a minor adjustment to the Roaming play style section, to add off the ball as an attribute to watch out for. Recently created a tactic for Chelsea and may make a quick write up on that process as well as the tweaks I made as the season progressed.

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hey llamaza nice post. I have a question , if i have a high creative midfield and striker but a low creative defence , how can I adjust that on my formation to give a fluid midfield and a rigid defence??? using player instructions???

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hey llamaza nice post. I have a question , if i have a high creative midfield and striker but a low creative defence , how can I adjust that on my formation to give a fluid midfield and a rigid defence??? using player instructions???

Hey Ralsek

Interesting question.

Firstly, be aware that Fluidity and Rigidity are both global instructions. I would say the main thing they do is determine interaction of your lines (since you can override the creativity and pressing instructions). The factors I'd consider in this would be:

* Your formation's shape.

By this I mean that if you have players in the DM and AM lines then you could afford to be more rigid as those players will be able to act as the links. For formations like 442 fluidity will bring the lines closer together to avoid isolation

* Your teams relative strength

Get more fluid if you are a stronger team, although this is not necessary.

You can get around some of your issues by giving your players more/(less) creative roles in a rigid/(fluid) formation, and adjusting the creativity.

Finally I'd be more concerned with my attackers creativity and would probably play a fluid system and give my defenders limited defender roles if their creativity setting was too high.

You could always manually adjust these things, but I don't see that as a great way of playing the game as I like my team to have a coherent overall strategy.

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Really good thread this. Just a quick question in your OP there is a screenshot of a list of players sorted by ability with the roles on etc how do you get that screen up? or where do you find it? Could really use something like that.

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Really good thread this. Just a quick question in your OP there is a screenshot of a list of players sorted by ability with the roles on etc how do you get that screen up? or where do you find it? Could really use something like that.

You can access it either in your squad screen or in the tactics screen.

In the top left bit of that screen you get a drop down list if you click the part next to where it says "Squad" (with the 'eye'), from there choose "Assistant Reports" then just click on the column you'd like to sort by.

I'm not sure if it matters, but I play on wide screen with high resolution and this may affect the number of columns of information you can see.

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You can access it either in your squad screen or in the tactics screen.

In the top left bit of that screen you get a drop down list if you click the part next to where it says "Squad" (with the 'eye'), from there choose "Assistant Reports" then just click on the column you'd like to sort by.

I'm not sure if it matters, but I play on wide screen with high resolution and this may affect the number of columns of information you can see.

Cheers mate :) Ill have a look when I get home from work later, see if I can find it. Will be following this thread, great idea.

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By writing this thread, you have taught me more about the tactical part of the game than I managed to figure out myself although I played the game since 1992 Thank you very much!

//Stupid Swede :)

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