fmobande

IGN member speak the truth about Football manager

347 posts in this topic

review on football manager from a member on IGN

"To be fair, the game isn't really all that good and SI are lucky that

they have no competition to speak of. It's easy to slap a high rating on

something when it's the best in its field by default. Football Manager

is generally only fun for casual football fans, particularly among kids.

For anyone who wants a challenging simulation, FM will never be able to

provide that. Every single user overachieves with relative ease and

there's no sense of accomplishment when you rack up the accolades.

Everyone has taken small teams up the divisions and make them the best

in the world. Everyone has won doubles/trebles/quadruples galore. It

gets boring once you've done it so many times.

Why is the game so easy? Simply put, the AI is awful. You don't even

need to exploit as it will self destruct for you. With each season that

passes, AI teams get weaker and the evidence of an extremely random

squad management module become apparent. An AI team may not even have a

third centreback to put on the bench, yet it will go ahead and spend its

budget on striker #7 that probably won't even get a game until their

contract expires, perhaps to be picked up by yourself on a free

transfer, or maybe another AI team after several years.

It's not just squad management. The AI can be profoundly stupid in

matches, too. You're playing a narrow diamond? Sit back and be amused as

the AI's 4-4-2 team attempts to construct moves through the middle.

You're playing a 3-5-2 against a 4-5-1? No problem, the AI will very

rarely realise that it has unmarked wingbacks to attack you with.

Tactics are a mockery of real-world football, too. You don't see

oldschool 4-3-3s with one striker flanked by two second strikers in real

life anymore, but it is extremely effective on FM. Play 3 uptop and you

can dominate.

There are also issues with a general lack of realism. It's possible for

strikers to score 50/60/70 goals a season. Some people even manage to

get 100 goals out of a striker somehow. I wish this was an exaggeration,

but it isn't. Give a striker maximum pace and 1 for everything else -

he will still get 20-30 goals a season.

Still, it has some redeeming qualities and I do still play the game

occasionally. I just wish another football management simulation would

come along and put it to shame one day."

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I think that review is very accurate and fair. I think SI does need to raise the bar considerably for their next title because every year it seems like the same game with minimal additions. The fact that there is no competition gives them the excuse to not really make more effort at improving the game and taking it to the next level.

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Harsh. Sure it's not perfect, but it's by no means a bad game.

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Its funny, I play football manager a lot, and really enjoy it, and have never really thought about it like this - but he is right on the money... There really are some glaring holes.

Definitely right about the quick striker comment aswell.....

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Oh right so because 1 IGN member comes out with this we all should sit up and listen ?? some points he make's are valid there's no denying the A.I needs to be better SI know this, but to say the game is't good is really a joke really, then there's the fact about competition hmm were do we start Fifa Manger Tries but fails miserably and lets not go down the recent Championship manager games, the competition as been there but been no way near good enough which is't SI fault and probably tells you how hard it is to make a game as complex as FM

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While some of his comments have some substance, his overall view is very harsh as far as I am concerned.

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On another note, if it was near enough impossible to get promoted and happened very rarely - ok that does reflect real life - then people would start to moan that the game is too difficult. Hard one for SI.........

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Every single user overachieves with relative ease and

there's no sense of accomplishment when you rack up the accolades.

compared to second down thread in the GD forum today....

every year i buy the game and get excited about playing it. but every year it results in the same story. no matter what i do, the ai always seems to do a better job. i just started a new save and in the first 5 games i lost all of them. your thinking nothin wrong with that. but when i take over spurs and lose against west brom, wolves, wigan, fulham and also everton. out of them i scored 3 and let in 15. i read that people find this easy, but i just cant seem to find out how. i always seem to struggle and just find it boring

So IGN member does not speak the truth, he/she speaks from his/her own perspective and puts their opinion across as the way everyone thinks.

All that is is a sensationalised review from someone who is annoyed or bored with the game, nothing more.

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The AI is most definitely weaker than a human mind, and needs a lot of improvement.

However, when a company with the resources of EA can't even get close to challenging FM, let alone challenging a human, it says a lot about how difficult it is to get right, and even more about the chances of a competitor ever being good enough to challenge.

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i allways find it funny when people say the game is way too easy when there is so many people saying exactly the opposite, to me the game is kinda balanced (not extremely easy not extremely hard) at least short term, long term gets easier and is the only point i agree in that review. what is really funny to me is when guys such as that IGN user see the game is easy for them yet do nothing to make it more challenging... oh i score a lot from corner cheat...change nothing, pacey strikers are overpowered....first thing he looks on a striker is pace...and i could even go as far as saying that guy uses a downloaded classic tatic that exploits the ME.

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i allways find it funny when people say the game is way too easy when there is so many people saying exactly the opposite, to me the game is kinda balanced (not extremely easy not extremely hard) at least short term, long term gets easier and is the only point i agree in that review. what is really funny to me is when guys such as that IGN user see the game is easy for them yet do nothing to make it more challenging... oh i score a lot from corner cheat...change nothing, pacey strikers are overpowered....first thing he looks on a striker is pace...and i could even go as far as saying that guy uses a downloaded classic tatic that exploits the ME.

It's been said a million times. The user shouldn't go out their way to make the game more challenging for them or restrict their tactics or squad building. It totally kills all suspense of belief which is after all very key for a simulation such as FM.

I like FM, but at the same time I am very disappointed that they are not focusing on developing the right areas and frankly don't see this changing either. The review definitely has a lot of merit and I completely agree with every point he makes, but despite all those qualities the game is still enjoyable.

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It starts difficult, but if you stick at it it just gets easier and easier.

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Nothing new here. The whole forum know that the AI and transfer system need work, lets hope this happens in the next couple of releases. If it doesn't happen then I would seriously consider not buying the game.

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Oh right so because 1 IGN member comes out with this we all should sit up and listen ?? some points he make's are valid there's no denying the A.I needs to be better SI know this, but to say the game is't good is really a joke really, then there's the fact about competition hmm were do we start Fifa Manger Tries but fails miserably and lets not go down the recent Championship manager games, the competition as been there but been no way near good enough which is't SI fault and probably tells you how hard it is to make a game as complex as FM

Lolz... "it's not SI's fault"... I bet you take in an apple for teacher too?

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Lolz... "it's not SI's fault"... I bet you take in an apple for teacher too?

Was you just taking out bits of my comment at random or did you actually read ?? were i said its not "SI fault" was about other football manager sims not been as good as there's , or are you actually saying that is SI fault ?

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Some valid points in the review. I have always loved the game but the ME needs major work as does the transfer system. My biggest gripe is that real life basics don't work. You need a workaround in a 4-2-3-1 to get your wingers to track back, a flat 4-4-2 is pointless because CM's don't defend properly. Far too many glaring errors which makes people resort to formations that would never in a million years be used IRL.

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The game has flaws. Which game doesn't? This guys an idiot though. He's massively unfair and inaccurate with most of his comments.

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Some valid points in the review. I have always loved the game but the ME needs major work as does the transfer system. My biggest gripe is that real life basics don't work. You need a workaround in a 4-2-3-1 to get your wingers to track back, a flat 4-4-2 is pointless because CM's don't defend properly. Far too many glaring errors which makes people resort to formations that would never in a million years be used IRL.

Nonsense. I play flat 4-4-2 and defend just fine. CM's only don't defend properly when there is only 2 with no DM and the wide men pushed forward into AML/AMR.

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AI squad management is poor, yes. Fast strikers do have too much effect, yes. But otherwise it's a very poor review. Every single user finds the game easy? He obviously doesn't come to these forums.

Does having little competition mean that SI are lucky or perhaps it's because their game is too good so nobody else can even get close to them? If it was easy to produce a realistic management sim then why aren't there more of them around?

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The game is realistic and not too easy, if played realistically. I simply do not believe that many, if any, players can get a striker to score 100 goals in a season without doing something unrealistic to deliberately alter would could happen in reality.

Any one of these gives a significant advantage over reality, and makes the game much easier:

• Re-starting after the very first time you set up the game – if you do this you already have knowledge of players to buy/sell and the match engine which you shouldn’t have in advance. This is true whatever level you load, and unless you are on the first and only save you created then you have made the game easier.

• Using the editor – even if you don’t improve anything, you are getting an insight into the actual details of players/clubs that you shouldn’t have.

• Reading the forums – this gives way too much advice and makes the game much easier, an advantage the AI doesn’t have. Without these forums for good players and especially tactics, the game is massively harder.

• Re-loading – an obvious one but many people do it and then say the game is too easy.

• Starting as anything other than Sunday league footballer makes the game much easier.

• To an extent, not starting at the lowest level of club, but this is more relative and situational depending on your aspirations.

If you just start a new game, never start another and don’t get advice that the AI can’t get from the forums, along with the more obvious cheating, then there is no way the game is too easy or you can get 100 goals a season from one player.

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Some valid points in the review. I have always loved the game but the ME needs major work as does the transfer system. My biggest gripe is that real life basics don't work.

Yes they do, if they don't for you then you are doing it wrong.

You need a workaround in a 4-2-3-1 to get your wingers to track back

This is a classic example of doing it wrong. If you want your players to mirror the real life 451/433 hybrid formations within FM you should be setting them up as a 451 with appropriate instructions and not 4231.

When setting formations in FM you should be viewing them from their defensive shape and not the offensive shape, this is where many FM users go wrong.

a flat 4-4-2 is pointless because CM's don't defend properly. Far too many glaring errors which makes people resort to formations that would never in a million years be used IRL.

I've never had any problems.

A weakness of the flat 442 shape is the gap between defence & midfield that can be exploited by players looking for space in the hole or strikers dropping off the front. This is exactly the sort of challenge that teams IRL face when playing this shape. You need to find a way to adapt to the challenge by either issuing different orders or changing your shape slightly to counter the threat.

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@hluraven

I've done that without using any forum knowledge (only my own) and only the tools provided within the game itself*

ie. I don't sign players based on previous knowledge. Most of my time playing is spent when all the real players have long retired.

I don't use the editor. I don't need to read the forums. I don't reload.

I don't start at the lowest level of club because that bores the hell out of me, I jump straight in the deep end with Newcastle.

*I did alter my striker's Footedness from "Right" to "Right Only" for a test that's documented on these forums.

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It's been said a million times. The user shouldn't go out their way to make the game more challenging for them or restrict their tactics or squad building. It totally kills all suspense of belief which is after all very key for a simulation such as FM.

Yet many users go out of their way to make the game easier by finding ways to exploit the ME or playing in a manner that is not realistic and then come onto the forums and complain how easy it is :rolleyes:

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Harsh but understandable frustration in the review. It would surprise me if most long-term fans of FM don't feel similarly to some degree or another. But it is difficult to accept a review (or snippet thereof?) like that without suggesting that such frustration is as much a characteristic of being a die-hard and long-term fan as it is with the quality of the product. The longer you play FM the more likely it is that some aspects of the gameplay are going to bore you eventually, if not outright **** you off. However, wouldn't this be true of nearly any complex process you become so familiar with?

That isn't to suggest that there are not problems with the very things the reviewer points out, but that these problems tend to emerge for the player as they pass 100-500 hours of gameplay (just a wild estimate). We'd all love it if this were not the case I imagine, but to suggest (through omission) that these issues are out-of-the-box gamebreakers is paying to much credence to one's frustration and not enough to the likely fact that 1000s of hours of fun have been had in spite of these same issues being there the whole time.

I think it is valuable to keep bringing these balance and design issues up year after year. One can only imagine how wonderful the game would be should these be satisfactorily addressed. While I don't think it's everyone's responsibility to balance their frustration with the long view in every post, if that was a full review then I think it was an unbalanced one.

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"Every single user overachieves with relative ease and

there's no sense of accomplishment when you rack up the accolades."

That alone proves he's talking bull, obviously hasn't read these forums too much :)

There's no game I can think of where the AI intuitively competes with human players, in spite of the fact you can get a degree in AI programming the fact is it's never got much better than basic and most games resort to rubber banding to make it compete.

FM doesn't do that at least but anything they can do to improve the AI would be welcome as it does frustrate just about all of us.

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"Every single user overachieves with relative ease and

there's no sense of accomplishment when you rack up the accolades."

That alone proves he's talking bull, obviously hasn't read these forums too much :)

Or watched you play.

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Or watched you play.

You speak the truth, 14 seasons in Div2 in Argentina :( I do still have a job though :p

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Does having little competition mean that SI are lucky or perhaps it's because their game is too good so nobody else can even get close to them? If it was easy to produce a realistic management sim then why aren't there more of them around?

I have to disagree with the reasoning here. I can think of at least 3 decent reasons why there are not stronger competitors for Football Manager that have nothing to do with whether or not it is "easy to produce a realistic management sim". Just because there isn't strong competition doesn't mean that any reason we pull out of a hat is the reason.

For example, there may be some exclusivity in the rights obtained for using certain leagues or names or trademarks, etc.. and not having these rights would undermine the sales of any potential new game.

Another example would be the huge network of researchers that assemble data for SI to use to create their database and update it, year after year. This is a massive bootstrapping problem for any new enterprise. How do you convice people to go out and support a product with their own hard work that doesn't exist yet?

A third reason could be that there are other programmatic hurdles to creating such a simulation that have nothing to do with the issues raised in the review that we have no clue about. It is a pretty big assumption to make to suggest that the issues we choose are the ones that preclude someone else from making a better product that happens to address these issues. How can one possibly know that? We aren't talking about making a better pizza here. You know, one with anchovies AND pineapple. Its a massively complex programming and human enterprise. Just because you can't find such a pizza doesn't mean that it is the toppings that are so difficult to assemble. I suggest that that is far too much induction.

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The AI is most definitely weaker than a human mind, and needs a lot of improvement.

However, when a company with the resources of EA can't even get close to challenging FM, let alone challenging a human, it says a lot about how difficult it is to get right, and even more about the chances of a competitor ever being good enough to challenge.

Bang on the money!! The problem is that we expect that what is a relatively small computer program in the grand scheme of things to be able to simulate a footballing world which is made up of hundreds of thousands of individual humans. Of course it's going to have flaws!! If someone's prepared to come up with an annual £100m budget and bring in the world's top AI experts then I'm all ears! Otherwise I'll settle for the FM games.

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But then all of those points come under the bracket of it not being easy to make a football managment sim. Exclusivity is a hurdle to overcome, SI manage it themselves. Building a network has been part of SI's main successes, in order to do this you have to build trust with your fansbase, its part of building a great franchise. Champ manager didnt manage to do it, EA sports have not managed to do it.

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he is kinda right though, once you get to a dominating position, nothing can challange that, and the AI building is awful and takes alot of fun out of the game when you actually keep track what they are doing, but i dont think most people pay much attention after 10-15 years cauz all the "real" guys are gone anyway

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Although the reviewer brought up some valid criticisms they are exaggerated to a ridiculous degree, and it is very one-sided. It is a poor review, I don't know why we are all discussing it.

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But then all of those points come under the bracket of it not being easy to make a football managment sim. Exclusivity is a hurdle to overcome, SI manage it themselves. Building a network has been part of SI's main successes, in order to do this you have to build trust with your fansbase, its part of building a great franchise. Champ manager didnt manage to do it, EA sports have not managed to do it.

I'd point out here that Miles started as a researcher (unpaid too :eek:) that shows the kind of commitment needed to grow a game like this from humble beginnings and develop it over years.

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The AI is most definitely weaker than a human mind, and needs a lot of improvement.

However, when a company with the resources of EA can't even get close to challenging FM, let alone challenging a human, it says a lot about how difficult it is to get right, and even more about the chances of a competitor ever being good enough to challenge.

if by EA you mean Fifa Manager, its actually done by a very small studio called Bright Future in germany every year, their manpower is less than SI, their database editor are fans around the world, its been this way for years now, i know it because i edited the polish database couple years ago.. so just because it has the "EA" logo on it, doesnt mean their got more ressources than SI, i guess thats what iam trying to say

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The three most useful reviews on Amazon UK describe it in a similar way.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Football-Manager-2012-Mac-DVD/dp/B005HGG006

This is one of those reviews and 27 out of 28 people agreed with it and I think it sums things up brilliantly.

By TomPo

To start off with, I'd like to say that I've bought nearly every Football Manager (or Championship Manager as it used to be) since CM'93 way back in...1993. So I like to think I know a bit about the CM/FM series of management games, having experienced the major changes the game has gone through as Championship Manager became Football Manager, and can be in a position to offer an opinion on this one. Hence, my review of this game isn't about how very little has changed from FM'11, it's about the game overall and how it's developed over time.

The core of the game itself has come on leaps and bounds since the 90's. I've always been a fan of the switch to 3D - the option is there to view old school text-only commentary if people want it, so visualising the text was never a negative imo. The depth of the game is now immense, from contracts to media interaction, tactical depth to set pieces, from scouting to training, etc etc, feature wise it's great compared to older versions, and provides everything the game needs to it to be a downright brilliant experience.

However, this is where the criticisms start to mount up. Ever since switching to SEGA as publishers, Sports Interactive have been under considerably increased and tremendous pressure to rush games out in time for the pre-Christmas sales every year. In the past few years, they've released retail versions of Football Manager that have had horrendous balance issues and downright game-breaking bugs, hoping to patch the problems later on (usually releasing the main patch in March, some 5 months after release) whilst they collect as many sales as they can. And to make matters worse, they're clearly working to a development budget and cycle that doesn't give enough time or manpower to make drastic overhauls to the game. As such, the game doesn't change much at all and hasn't really since FM2008, they just continuosly tweak the same game and add more features and options (or bells and whistles) onto an outdated design that really needs to be re-written from the ground-up again. Most of us know that FM 2012 is pretty much the same as FM 2011 just with a few streamlined menu options that allow you to perform a task in 1-2 clicks that previously would have needed 3-4 clicks (certainly not worth £30), but that doesn't even begin to deal with the underlying design that is horribly outdated. A good way to think about it is that if FM 2012 were a version of Windows, it'd be Windows '98 that had been continuously patched over the next 14 years, never being re-written from the ground up. Think about all the inefficiencies and limitations that such a development model would present compared to systems that are constantly redesigned, especially in the face of competition (i.e. Windows 7 copying elements of Linux or MacOS because the others provided something innovative).

As an example of the limitations being referred to, take a look at the match engine. It hasn't changed in donkey years and the AI has become so linear it's a joke. E.g. the AI actually cheats by scripting mistakes and poor performanes into your team/players to give the impression that the AI is countering your tactics like a real life manager would. The AI doesn't have the ability to form genuine counter tactics, or exploit weaknesses in your tactics or lineup - you just end up losing games because the game has decided you will. It's gotten to the stage where having good tactics and a well put-together team with great individuals means alot less than it used to in older versions of FM/C.

The match engine itself also has players in specific positions doing the same repetitive motions, no matter what your instructions or what their abilities, because those specific positions are scripted to play a certain way. For example, you'll never see a centreback dribbling forward past 5-6 players like Lucio or Beckhenbauer (or even big Sol Campbell at one time) used to, no matter how much you tell them to, so if you somehow managed to get a cultured and gifted attacking defender, those attacking abilities are useless within the game. Same thing applies to many other positions, e.g. fullbacks. The Cafu's and Roberto Carlos' in real life don't exist within the match engine as fullbacks only play one way. This is all because the game is stuck with a match engine from 5+ years ago that they've only incrementally updated, and won't really make major changes to.

Another area that I've learnt to hate is the match ratings, again completely linear - unless outfield players score a goal or get an assist, or the entire team wins by a large margin, players rarely get good ratings. So you could have a defender like Franco Baresi in your side playing the game like it's an art form week in week out, and unless he scores/creates goals, the match ratings never reflect whether he's excelled at his job or not. Your star centreback could have the game of his life, a 10 out of 10 defensive performance where he single handedly keeps the defense together and dominates the opposition attack, but if it finishes 0-0 he'll get a 7 rating, 7.5 at most. Defensive midfielders are similarly a problem, someone like Makelele, Roy Keane, Vieira, etc, or "playmaking midfielders" like Xavi don't get recognised in this match rating system unless they score/create goals. For me, this ruins much of the fun the game should bring to players.

Furthermore, certain aspects of the game outside of the match engine are also outdated and probably "broken" because too much tweaking has been done to code that needs to be re-written from the ground up. E.g. the transfer market is completely borked in my experience, it's nothing like in previous years where competition for the next hot talent was fierce, in the current iterations of the game the AI clubs seem to do nothing despite there being major interest by a whole gang of suitors. And when you look at it from a different perspective, I know this is the correct conclusion because the AI squad building and newgen development is horrendous. Can the game really be fun if you can visibly see great clubs like Barcelona, Milan, ManU, etc etc, waste away whilst they buy dross? For me, no. No doubt some people don't mind.

So I'm giving this game 2 stars out of 5, because in my opinion it is a highly frustrating experience that is benefitting from not having enough competition to force significant changes and restructuring of game concepts/code.

I couldn't agree more and as someone who has also played through all the games since the early CM days I have officially lost interest. I just find it too frustrating to see that certain features dont work and game having no real long term playability. When I was younger i used to be able to accept and overlook things, possibly because I didn't notice they were there. But once you notice a problem and then multiple problems and glitches and see how they affect the realism and playability of a game, they simply ruin any fun in the game for me.

I actually now play Soccermanager the online game. Although the match engine is very basic and certain features like training aren't in the game, I find it to be more enjoyable than FM as there is a real competitive edge to the game. I'm desperate for FM to revamp things so i can start enjoying it again, but unfortunately I think there is little chance they will redo the match engine for at least another couple of years and until a new ME and new AI is brought out, I wont be buying.

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I'd point out here that Miles started as a researcher (unpaid too :eek:) that shows the kind of commitment needed to grow a game like this from humble beginnings and develop it over years.

You can bet that paul c and his brother had no exclusive rights to anything when they started. Most companies now would hae a huge advantage over what they started with purely because of the easniess of gathering information thanks to the internet.

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if by EA you mean Fifa Manager, its actually done by a very small studio called Bright Future in germany every year, their manpower is less than SI, their database editor are fans around the world, its been this way for years now, i know it because i edited the polish database couple years ago.. so just because it has the "EA" logo on it, doesnt mean their got more ressources than SI, i guess thats what iam trying to say

It become that way because they've been unable to compete. At the start they threw loads of money in an attempt to establish themselves.

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The review is terrible, im not breaking it down because its pointless.

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Spertz, did you actually read all of that review or just the start of it? It gets pretty daft a couple of paragraphs in.

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Most the stuff in that review as been talked about to death anyway lets be right, as i said in early post there are valid points i 100% agree about the A.I Needing to be better,but all these things have been brought up many many of times and the thread will probably end up going same way as the others

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There are legitimate criticisms of Football Manager to be made, and the IGN guy has a couple of really good points - although I would argue that his expectations are unreasonable given the limitations of technology and realistic algorithims, and I think most people are actually pretty damn happy to have a football simulation that feels as real as FM does, AI squad building issues and all.

But that Amazon review's a right laugh. AI cheating by scripting in mistakes for the human player? Laughable claim, there's no evidence for it and it would be harder for SI to program that in, if they even had any motivation to - which they don't.

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Tbf the op article is boring to read and is using writing techniques like social proof,looking for guidance from others as to what to do and what to accept. Many would accept what it says so lets say it. Appalling and you see it in most of acticles

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Out of curiosity has anyone ever tried giving a striker maximum pace and 1 for everything else?

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Nonsense. I play flat 4-4-2 and defend just fine. CM's only don't defend properly when there is only 2 with no DM and the wide men pushed forward into AML/AMR.
If there is two and a DM that's not a flat 4-4-2!!!

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Yes they do, if they don't for you then you are doing it wrong.

This is a classic example of doing it wrong. If you want your players to mirror the real life 451/433 hybrid formations within FM you should be setting them up as a 451 with appropriate instructions and not 4231.

When setting formations in FM you should be viewing them from their defensive shape and not the offensive shape, this is where many FM users go wrong.

I've never had any problems.

A weakness of the flat 442 shape is the gap between defence & midfield that can be exploited by players looking for space in the hole or strikers dropping off the front. This is exactly the sort of challenge that teams IRL face when playing this shape. You need to find a way to adapt to the challenge by either issuing different orders or changing your shape slightly to counter the threat.

There is a thread somewhere here that if I am correct even Cleon states that there is an ME issue with CM defending and it's better to play with DM's.

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Out of curiosity has anyone ever tried giving a striker maximum pace and 1 for everything else?

Yes. It worked brilliantly around FM2005-2007 iirc, but then it became less and less useful with each release.

You'd still be able to perform better than you should be able to, but not in the way he states.

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There is a thread somewhere here that if I am correct even Cleon states that there is an ME issue with CM defending and it's better to play with DM's.

That was specifically referring to 2 MCs in a 4-2-3-1, where they have no protection behind (no DM) or to the sides (no MR/ML). A flat 4-4-2 is different because the MR/ML mean they are less isolated.

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If there is two and a DM that's not a flat 4-4-2!!!

I clearly state NO DM

That was specifically referring to 2 MCs in a 4-2-3-1, where they have no protection behind (no DM) or to the sides (no MR/ML). A flat 4-4-2 is different because the MR/ML mean they are less isolated.

Kenco's post explains what I mean. 2 CM's with NO DM and advanced wide men.

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That was specifically referring to 2 MCs in a 4-2-3-1, where they have no protection behind (no DM) or to the sides (no MR/ML). A flat 4-4-2 is different because the MR/ML mean they are less isolated.

I have a 4-2-3-1 and my midfield duo defend just fine. It might help that I always play at least one as a Ball winner on defend though and he's sick for Marking, Tackling and Stamina so he's bounding left/right/centre and nothing gets through him.

Then again, if they don't have the ball who cares about midfield defence? >_>

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