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I've had success with counter tactics in FM14 (got to the Champions League final first season with Olympiakos using their default squad and a deep 4231). I would only really recommend playing the Counter mentality if you're a relatively a poor team (which, in Champions League terms, Olympiakos are). Better teams have better players and can therefore afford to be more attacking. The Counter mentality is basically only for situations where you wouldn't be too unhappy with a 0-0. If you want a better result as a minimum requirement then you should pick a more attacking mentality.

I like using a 4231 (DM version) because it can easily be transformed into a more attacking tactic simply by changing from Counter to Standard and also changing some TIs. This means you can start off as a poor team playing on the counter but as you improve, you can be a bit more expansive and avoid the problem of frequent 0-0 results when teams are more reluctant to attack you (mentioned above by El Presidente).

If you're going to use the Counter mentality here are some general rules of thumb based on my experiences (remember that this is by no means gospel, there are always other approaches to creating a successful tactic):

-Use DMs rather than CMs. If you're sitting deep with a low block, your opponents will find space in front of your centre-backs, so you need players in there to stop them. Logically, the deeper you sit, the more players you need deep in your own half when defending. As llama3 mentioned above, it makes sense to have one of these players as a distributor such as a DLP (I always go with a DLP-DM combo) unless your DMs are really poor on the ball, in which case you could go for a BPD instead.

-Don’t play Rigid/Structured. Related to the point above. If you’re playing with a lot of players deep in your own half, you need to give them the freedom to get forward and help out in attack. Picking Rigid or Very Rigid (Structured and Highly Structured in FM15 terms) will leave your forwards isolated and exaggerate the gap between your defence and attack. I’d recommend Fluid or at least Flexible. (Of course, you could achieve similar results playing Rigid/Structured and choosing individual roles that allow players to get forward and support attacks more but I find that it’s more difficult to achieve a good balance between defence and attack using this approach).

-Don't use direct passing as a TI. If you're using the Counter mentality, your team will take the opportunity to launch counter-attacks when there’s a good chance of the counter being successful. When this happens, all of your players are given a higher mentality and direct passing automatically by the match engine. If you have direct passing as a TI then your players will try and play difficult passes all the time, not just when it makes sense to do so, and will therefore give the ball away a lot more since your forwards will be outnumbered by the opposition defenders most of the time. As a side-note on Tis: I always feel you should try to choose them based on how you want your team to play when they aren’t in ‘counter-attack’ mode, since the match engine will handle the counter-attacking for you.

-Take care of possession. This is related to the last point. Since you aren’t going to have much possession relative to your opponent, you need to make sure you don’t give it away immediately after you get it. This is why instructions like ‘Play Out of Defence’ and ‘Work Ball Into The Box’ can be effective in a Counter system even though they might not seem to make sense on the surface. Keeping hold of the ball more means your opponent won’t be able to constantly attack you, which will take pressure off your defenders. In an attacking sense, it will mean that you play more patiently, which gives your players more time to get forward and help out in attack. Since most of your players will be deep in your half when defending, you need to give them time to get up the pitch and help out your forwards. Of course, there is a risk that you might become too slow in your build-up play and struggle to create chances. If that is the case I’d recommend playing at a higher tempo, which should see your players move the ball more quickly but not lose possession as much as if you’d used the Direct Passing TI.

-Don't press, use hard tackling instead. Pressing means that a player will leave their position to close an opponent, which is not great when you’re sitting deep and trying to hold your shape. The ‘Get Stuck In’ TI means that a player will stick to their position but aggressively try to win the ball when the chance arises (which is, I think, what a lot of people are trying to achieve when they pick a drop deeper/press more combination of TIs).

Edit: One extra thing to also bear in mind with the Counter mentality is that the base settings already mean your team will sit deep and close down less, so it isn't always necessary to pick TIs like Drop Deeper and Close Down Less, since your team will do this to some degree by default.

As always, you’ll need to watch the games to figure if these pointers are working for you and your team. I can post a picture of my current tactic for FM15 in a later post if anyone’s interested.

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I prefer using 'stay on feet' because it let's your team instantly launch a counterattack when someone takes the ball of someone. With sliding tackles this often isn't possible.

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Edit: One extra thing to also bear in mind with the Counter mentality is that the base settings already mean your team will sit deep and close down less, so it isn't always necessary to pick TIs like Drop Deeper and Close Down Less, since your team will do this to some degree by default.

I think this is the number one impediment to success for a lot of players, and it's partly because, post-sliders, the game does a horrible job of communicating that a lot of TIs are inherent to combinations of mentality and style. It's rare that I have more than four or five TIs turned on, and often it's just one or two, but I see these tactics people have where they've selected every single one that they thought applied to the style they wanted to play, and it ended up turing an attacking style into an insane overload or a careful counter-attack into negative hoofball.

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Some interesting points, and they all make sense. Do you have any experience using wingers in AM(R/L) versus wingers in the LM/RM positions? Would like to try some of your points in a 4-2-3-1 with DM's, but the wingers in this formation rarely follow back in defence in my perception.

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Yes you are.

Those tactical memos... I really do recommend a sticky with one of those memos for each and every role.

Because, hot damn, after reading that I now actually have a better understanding of the Regista. Anyway, certainly worth putting a memo up for the Treq, False 9, Roaming playmaker, Inside forward and all that.

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When this happens, all of your players are given a higher mentality and direct passing automatically by the match engine.

What triggers the counter attacks? When my team turns over possession on the edge of my own box, I want to see my pacey wingers (MR/L(a)) bombing forward to provide an outlet and then the midfield to follow. What actually happens is they hang back or slowly jog forward in line with the ball. The player with the ball then has no pass on and so boots it straight to the opposing defenders. When the wingers do get the ball they wait around with it rather than take on an exposed full back and boot it themselves. It's very frustrating.

I'm currently not using any TIs or PIs. I've experimented a bit before but, like you've said, it seems to only affect the play when 'counter attack mode' isn't on. My wingers don't have any PPMs like 'dwells on ball' or 'stops play' so I'm confused.

Has anyone else seen this? Anyone been able to resolve it? I've seen AI teams bomb forward to counter me before but I can't seem to get my own team to do it.

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I prefer using 'stay on feet' because it let's your team instantly launch a counterattack when someone takes the ball of someone. With sliding tackles this often isn't possible.

That's an interesting point, I'm experimenting with this in my game at the moment after reading your post. My original reasoning was that since you'll generally be making tackles closer to your own goal with the Counter mentality, it's more important to be aggressive and make sure you win those tackles (missing a tackle in your own box is far more dangerous than missing one near the halfway line for example). But on the other hand, more aggressive tackling doesn't necessarily mean you'll win those challenges and does leave you more exposed after a missed challenge (as well as making it hard to start attacks after winning the ball, as you pointed out). I wonder if there's a major difference between the 'Get Stuck In' TI and the individual 'Harder Tackling' setting for players? I'm going to have a play around with this.

I think this is the number one impediment to success for a lot of players, and it's partly because, post-sliders, the game does a horrible job of communicating that a lot of TIs are inherent to combinations of mentality and style.

Very true. I generally really like the tactical system post-sliders but I'd be pretty lost if I hadn't used the slider version originally. I wouldn't want them to come back, but even just a diagram showing where the D-line sits and the directness of the passing for each mentality would be better than the text descriptions that are there currently. Then these could move up or down depending on the TIs you pick, might make it a bit easier to see when you've overdone it with the TIs.

Some interesting points, and they all make sense. Do you have any experience using wingers in AM(R/L) versus wingers in the LM/RM positions? Would like to try some of your points in a 4-2-3-1 with DM's, but the wingers in this formation rarely follow back in defence in my perception.

You're correct there. There's a lot of discussion across various threads about the AML/R not tracking back and whether they should/should not. My advice would be firstly to play Fluid, since it will drop the mentality of your attacking players and make the wingers track back more and also try to go for support roles in that strata. I use an Inside Forward(s) in AML and a Winger(a) in the MR slot. I find the support duty on the IF and playing Fluid means that he will provide enough cover for an attacking fullback/wingback. Using the winger in the M strata rather than AM means that he'll also track back a lot more. I wouldn't recommend giving the AML/R an attack duty even when playing Fluid if you're trying to counter though as they just don't provide enough defensive support.

What triggers the counter attacks? When my team turns over possession on the edge of my own box, I want to see my pacey wingers (MR/L(a)) bombing forward to provide an outlet and then the midfield to follow. What actually happens is they hang back or slowly jog forward in line with the ball. The player with the ball then has no pass on and so boots it straight to the opposing defenders. When the wingers do get the ball they wait around with it rather than take on an exposed full back and boot it themselves. It's very frustrating.

It will depend on your system but in general I'd suggest 'Exploit The Flanks' to try and get the ball to your wingers as quickly as possible. It will also make your team play a bit wider and your full-backs more attacking. I created a chance a few minutes ago from a FB(s) knocking a nice cross-field pass to my IF(s), who cut inside and fed my W(a) who was bombing up in support, so it is possible. Some other stuff: The fact the player winning the ball is hoofing it might mean that the defensive players don't have enough creative freedom to play the kind of passes out to the flanks that you need to. Try picking a more creative role for your DMs or a BPD and maybe try playing Fluid if you aren't already. Having both wingers on attack duty might also mean they're too far forward to receive the pass - you could try switching one to a support duty or to a WM(a). What system are you playing? Is it 100% tactical familiarity?

As for what triggers it, I'm not entirely sure: from watching the games it seems like it has something to do with the number of players the opposition has in their own half when their attack breaks down (possibly in relation to the number of players your teams has in a position to attack?). I'm not entirely sure, I reckon there must be a post/more knowledgeable person around to explain it though.

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Borrowed from www.guidetofootballmanager.com

"A counter attacking phase of play occurs in Football Manager when a team wins possession and there are less than X opposition players between the ball and the opposition goal. During this phase the counter attacking team will play with more attacking urgency until possession is lost or the ball goes out of play, at which point the phase ends"

I suspect that happens during all counter attacks on all mentalities.

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What system are you playing? Is it 100% tactical familiarity?

I'm trying a 4-1-4-1 Counter / Fluid:

GK: GK(d)

DR: FB(s)

DCR: CD(d)

DCL: BPD(d)

DL: FB(s)

DM: DLP(d)

MR: W(a)

MCR: BTB(s)

MCL: CM(a)

ML: W(a)

ST: DLF(s)

TIs: Pass into space, Exploit the flanks, Clear ball to flanks

My aim is to take advantage of my squad's high pace and acceleration, particularly the wingers and striker (all have pace and acceleration over 17). I thought I'd do this by playing on the counter with wingers in the midfield strata so there's a lot of space ahead of them to run into. Generally, when the opposition's attacks break down there is space in wide areas to run into (behind an advanced full back or at an exposed one) but they just don't go for it. The wingers track back well and usually aren't too far forward to receive an outlet pass.

I realise DLF(s) is not going to be the best role to take advantage of pace but I worry that any attack duty leaves him stranded. It also seems to causes the rest of the team to attempt to hoof it to him as he's the most advanced player on the team. Any ideas for a good role here? Would an AMC help a striker on attack duty? I'd worry it'd spoil the defensive shape though.

Admittedly it does'nt have 100% tactical familiarity but I haven't seen anything promising other than decent team defending to make me want to commit to it.

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The reason I ask about familiarity is just because your team's decision making won't be as good as you might expect until they're 100% familiar (which is frustrating when trying to build a system because you really can't start drawing any solid conclusions until you've played a few games). So that could be part of it, but there are a couple of things regarding fluidity and your TIs that might be contributing too. This is also a good example about how advice from others isn't always the best thing for your own team, since I'm going to contradict what I said above and tell you not to play Fluid with this setup. I'll show you what my system looks like first so I can better explain it.

Counter/Fluid

GK: GK(d)

DR: FB(s)

DCR: CD(d)

DCL: CD(d)

DL: WB(a)

DM: DM(s)

DM: DLP(d)

MR: W(a)

AM: TQ(a)

AML: IF(s)

ST: AF(a)

TIs: Higher tempo, exploit the flanks, play out of defence

The reason I play Fluid with this is that it reduces the mentality of your attacking players as well as increasing the mentality of your defensive ones. It means that the TQ and AF aren't isolated from my midfield and drop back a bit more defensively. However, in your system you don't have this issue. In my setup, I have 3 players in the CF/AM strata, 2 with attack duties. I need to play Fluid or they'll be totally isolated. You have 1 player across those two strata (the CF) and he's on a support duty. However, you do have 3 players on attack duties in the CM strata. Playing Fluid will actually reduce the mentalities for all 3 of these players, limiting the support for your striker. This is potentially why your wingers are less attacking than you'd expect. So the first thing I'd do is switch to Flexible and see what happens.

In terms of TIs, I'm not sure about Clear ball to flanks or Pass into space. The first one will mean your defenders aim a quick hoof down the flanks when they win the ball. However, you don't have any players in the AML/R slots for them to aim at. Wingers in the CM strata will generally be way too far back to take advantage of balls like these when you recover possession. I believe the instruction is for AML/R players who won't be tracking back and will just hang out behind the full-backs waiting for their defenders to win the ball back (ala Ronaldo). You could change this to Play out of defence. This reduces the passing length for your defenders and will give your wingers more time to get forward when you win the ball back. Pass into space is ok to use in a counter system, but I'm not sure about it with the roles you have. In the CM strata you have 4 players who are all runners and will attempt to burst forward and support the forward when you have the ball. Using Pass into space will mean that the first priority for each of these players will be to look for a through-ball, but to who? When your winger picks up the ball around the halfway line, he doesn't really have anyone running beyond the defence to play a through-ball to, and more importantly that shouldn't be his priority anyway. He should just be running with the ball. I'd turn this one off altogether for now and perhaps put it on for individual players later if you need to.

Also related to that last point - everyone in the CM strata is a runner and nobody's really looking to hold possession and pick out a pass. To combat this, you could try changing your ML to a support duty and potentially to a Wide Playmaker (who will combine nicely in picking out the forward runs of the CM(a)). You could then put the LB on an attack duty and possibly change them to Wingback to create a bit more depth to your attacks. Another option might be to move the ML up into the AM strata as an IF(s). This will mean you have someone a bit further forward for your DLP to pick out when you win the ball. In the example I gave you earlier, it was the IF(s) who was waiting to receive the pass down the wing from my FB, not the W(a), who was stationed further back and was the one who made the run from deep to finish off the move. An IF could also give you a bit more presence in the box for finishing off moves, which might be lacking in a system with two dedicated wingers.

The final bit of advice I would give is about the forward: A DLF is quite static and in single striker systems you need someone who can move around more. Maybe try a Complete Forward(s)? Depending on the role changes you make, you may need to change others as well to ensure you have a good combination of creative freedom and specialized roles (eg. changing the BPD to a CD and possibly the B2B to a CM(s)) using the rule of Fluid = 2 specialized roles, Flexible = 3. You have a lot of options. On the whole though, the system is good. You don't need to make a lot of radical changes and I certainly think it's workable as a counter system. If I were going to have a stab at it, I'd try something like this to begin with...

Counter/Flexible

GK: GK(d)

DR: FB(s)

DCR: CD(d)

DCL: CD(d)

DL: WB(a)

DM: DLP(d)

MR: W(a)

MCR: BTB(s)

MCL: CM(a)

ML: WP(s)

ST: CF(s)

TIs: Exploit the flanks, Play out of defence

...and if you find you aren't getting enough support into the box with that then I'd recommend going with the IF(s) on the left (and potentially moving back to Fluid since you'll then only have 2-ish specialized roles). Good luck!

PS. How good is your team btw? If they aren't bottom-6 material have you considered Standard mentality?

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Hey jimmylazers really some great perspectives, I find it very usefull. Have you ever tried to recreate Atletico madrids counter tactic? :)

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I think a common problem people have with counter tactics is that they want their team to Close Down More and Drop Deep. This creates too much space behind the lines. Personally I prefer to have a much higher defensive line so we can press higher up the pitch and keep hold of more possession.

I play a slightly odd 4-1-2-1-2 Diamond with Sakho on the right as a Raumdeuter with West Ham - 5th in the league including a 3-0 win over Arsenal. I had just 38% possession that game.

If you drop deep I would assume you have to stand off and fill up the space with men behind the ball. If you start pressing there is space for their attacking players to take advantage of

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I would push Oscar up and change Hazard from a wide playmaker to something more direct like another winger.

Matic as an anchorman is probably a little conservative for a two-man DM setup. If you made him a standard DM he should contribute more to defending his flank and win the ball back more often without overly exposing the back line. As long as Fabregas does his own job properly, anyway.

I played a similar setup with Swansea in the beta. Didn't have enough good tacklers to press so played deep and compact and relied on the pace of Routledge, Dyer and Montero to attack space from deep, with Bony and Gylfi stationed higher and linking play to them on a fast transition.

Finished 3rd, but couldn't beat a 'lesser' team (Burnley, Leicester etc.) to save my life. As you'd expect from a counter setup.

Thanks for the excellent feedback, I will try your suggestions.

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To be honest, unless your a top side I see that counter attacking is just a recipe for disaster. Your just a sitting duck unless you have top players with the right stats that allow you to be solid at the back.

About once in every 3/4 games I see my team actually put together a fast paced counter attack. Most goals come from set pieces or just regular avenues.

I've very quick players up front to field which makes me think that counter attacking is the way to go, but it just seems hopeless. I don't threaten any opponent offensively, and just defend, defend, defend, concede, concede, concede.

Help very much welcome...

7yaiqNA.png

Counter/Fluid

RB- stay wider, more risky passes

LB- sit narrower

DM- pass it shorter, more risky passes

RG- more direct passes, more risky passes

CmBad7c.png

7vtykFv.png

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Remove Look For Overlap, Roam From Positions and Play Out of Defence.

Look For Overlap: You want your wide players breaking, but with this instruction they will play more passively waiting for the fullbacks to overlap them. I would also have one of your wide players on support and the other on attack, so you can stagger your transition a bit.

Roam From Position: You want your players static as they should be in a set position to break from. You don't want them roaming somewhere else as that wil affect the speed of your transition, so if anything I would use Stick To Positions.

Play Out of Defence: Why, why, why? You want to break at speed if the opportunity allows it, this will just slow your transition down.

I would play a normal 4-2-3-1 with your Wingers in the AML/R position, your CM at AMC and your DMs at MC. You are playing Counter so your players will be deep anyway, but you want the players who break to be higher up the field. When you create a Counter tactic you need to think who are your outlets when you win the ball back? Who is breaking up the field? Who is moving the ball up the field and how? ALl of this needs to be done as quickly as possible when you win the ball back.

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I would move all your midfield up 1 step if it was me.

Hazard, Oscar and Ramires to AM

Fabregas and Matic to CM

If you put the wide players on Inside Forward Support they will defend by marking players, but also push forward and inside.

If you put a central player on Attacking Midfielder - Support. He will also drop deep and mark a player.

With dropping your entire midfield deep you may be inviting too much pressure on yourself.

Turning it from a counter attacking threat, into just a defensive tactic.

Costa will struggle to get the ball and hold it up long enough to get help, and anyone who breaks forward with the ball, is only going to be able to pass backwards and break the counter.

If I ever set up for the counter tactic. I set it up for 2 types of play.

When I can counter.

When I cannot counter.

So I set the team shape to be able to counter, but in roles that will keep possession to pass the ball around and also defend well when I can't counter.

Then I turn on counter attacking.

With things in the Match Engine they way they are, you don't want to give the opposition a chance to get too many crosses or long shots in.

My Chelsea team is set to counter (was previously set to control, but in a way that it also attacked like a counter at times)

Undefeated in the league and won the league with 8 matches to play.

Not saying its perfect but it can work.

I play with a high line, retain possession, tight marking, get stuck in.

Switching to Counter already drops your Defensive line a fair bit.

Tactic kind of works by penning the opposition into their half, and when the ball comes out the team will either counter if possible, or pass it around and try and break down the opposition and create chances.

When finally the opposition breaks out, you try and win the ball back and as soon as you do, they will either counter, or if they can't. Play it around again.

Rinse and Repeat.

Just spotted this, thanks for the excellent feedback!

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Just wanna say thanks for all the great advice! I took the basic ideas of the formation, mentality and set-piece routines from the Clear Cut Magazine, excellent stuff. I also borrowed the bit about player roles in amrlc from Sarin1, so nice to see the advanced players actually defending for a change.

This is my setup:

Formation: 4-2DM-3Wide-1

Mentality: Attacking

Team Shape: Flexible

Team Instructions: Drop Deeper, close less down, stay on feet, be more diciplined, pass into space.

Roles:

GK-D

WB-A*2 w. PI: Stay wider

CD-D*2

DLP-S

DM-S w. PI: get Further forward

IF-S*2 w. PI: shoot less often.

AM-S w. PI: roam from position

AF-A w. PI: hold up ball

Defending corners: 3 best headers on mark tall players, 4 zonally mark six-yard-box, 2 fastest players on stay forward, 1 with best vision and passing to edge of area.

Defending freekicks: 2 fastest players on stay forward.

The attacking play is just marvelous so far, may have to adjust the roles some what to be a bit tighter at the back, but usually I manage to stifle the opposition. I have in average about 12-14 shots against me, but 8-10 of them are longshots.

I've only tested it with Swansea so far, but worth a shot :)

dUxrZ1pT.jpeg

Edit: Changed the DL to a WB-S, with stay wider, and the GK's distribution to Distribute quickly. Considering making the dlp a defend duty as I just want him to ping accurate longballs towards the front four.

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It's been performing quite well, 4 points off the top in the middle of November, still concede a bit too much, and a bit weak against the likes of Chelsea and City. I'm finding that the goals I concede are either long-shots, set-pieces or crosses, and I really don't know if that is because of the current state of the match-engine or the tactic. Saw a small improvement after I changed the DLP to defend duty. Have to try it out in the full mode, as it is a bit hard for me to spot everything without the analyzing tools.

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Very interesting thread here, although it seems quite striking to me that different people posted quite different solutions.

Keep the comments coming, please. I might add something from my perspective later as well...

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Using AMR/Ls for wingers is the best way to go when wanting to build a counter-attacking tactic IMO. I'm pretty sure a counter is triggered in the ME when you have more than x number players than the opposition in a certain scenario, or at least something similar to that. So when you turn over possession, your wide players are high up the pitch, as they will be less willing to track back in the AM strata rather than in the M strata (MR/Ls). So as the piece in the CCC uses a 4-2-3-1 (Deep), I would actually agree thats the best starting point IMO. :thup:

I would also like to add that from my experiences, I think sitting back and trying to withstand attacks is extremely hard to get right on the recent MEs. I think a more attacking variant is easier to implement, therefore something similar to Klopp. I think Vizzini has the right idea thus far.

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I followed this thread with great intrest and I rly could use some of the things written here! So thank you guys first of all :)

I started a new save with Gladbach after I played half way through a season with them and wasn't to happy with the result but saw some improvement, so I wanted to start all over again with the things I learned.

I still try to improve my tactics, so I got some questions.

Did i get it right that playing with 'counter' actually means you have two situations when in possession:

1) There is a chance to counter, so your team counter attacks.

2) No chance for a counter attack, so your team plays 'normal'.

Right?

I assume I am so based on that my next question:

In case 1) are the TI's I gave my team are ignored? And they play in a 'state of counter attacking'? (direct passes, riksy passes, high tempo and so on...)

And if in case 2) they follow the TI's?

At the moment I only got 'Get stuck in' as a TI (maybe will add 'whipped crosses' since I have only small but fast strikers). But I want to play a possession based game if case 2) occurs. So (assume I understood all of the stuff in this thread... :) ) I would add 'retain possession', 'play out of defence' and 'work into box', since I don't need the slower tempo and the shorter passing due to 'counter' mentality...

Am I still on the right path? I'm unsure since those three TI's are kind of 'against' the counter play style. But if my earlier assumption is right they should ignore those and counter...

I hope you can help me and understand my questions :) Even if this post sounds after rereading kind like a diary or just writing down my thoughts :D

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This is a really good thread.

I have been so frustrated with the movement of players when trying to play an "attacking counter" type of football. Players simple did not move very well and were to "locked" in their position.

But with the help of the article in clear cut magazine and the discussion in this thread, it now looks like I have somewhat succeded creating a decent attacking counter tactic.

It's not perfect, and I do still believe, that the movement of players and lack of/poor through balls are issues that SI needs to take a serious look at, but its better than anything I have tried since FM12 (where counter football was way better).

The way I see it, you can only really succeed if you stay deep and use attacking mentality.

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I followed this thread with great intrest and I rly could use some of the things written here! So thank you guys first of all :)

I started a new save with Gladbach after I played half way through a season with them and wasn't to happy with the result but saw some improvement, so I wanted to start all over again with the things I learned.

I still try to improve my tactics, so I got some questions.

Did i get it right that playing with 'counter' actually means you have two situations when in possession:

1) There is a chance to counter, so your team counter attacks.

2) No chance for a counter attack, so your team plays 'normal'.

Right?

I assume I am so based on that my next question:

In case 1) are the TI's I gave my team are ignored? And they play in a 'state of counter attacking'? (direct passes, riksy passes, high tempo and so on...)

And if in case 2) they follow the TI's?

At the moment I only got 'Get stuck in' as a TI (maybe will add 'whipped crosses' since I have only small but fast strikers). But I want to play a possession based game if case 2) occurs. So (assume I understood all of the stuff in this thread... :) ) I would add 'retain possession', 'play out of defence' and 'work into box', since I don't need the slower tempo and the shorter passing due to 'counter' mentality...

Am I still on the right path? I'm unsure since those three TI's are kind of 'against' the counter play style. But if my earlier assumption is right they should ignore those and counter...

I hope you can help me and understand my questions :) Even if this post sounds after rereading kind like a diary or just writing down my thoughts :D

1- When your side has the numbers advantage then they'll spring a counter yes, the ME requirements have to be met for this to happen.

2 - Yups they play normal.

When a counter attack happens what will happens is the players will be (automatically) given direct passing, the highest possible mentality and tempo for the duration of the move. When the ME deems the move to have finished then they will revert back to the norm.

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1- When your side has the numbers advantage then they'll spring a counter yes, the ME requirements have to be met for this to happen.

2 - Yups they play normal.

When a counter attack happens what will happens is the players will be (automatically) given direct passing, the highest possible mentality and tempo for the duration of the move. When the ME deems the move to have finished then they will revert back to the norm.

Thx. :)

One thing I'm still uncertain about are the TI's. In case of counter will they be ignored? So a "retain a possession" won't inhibit a counter?

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Thx. :)

One thing I'm still uncertain about are the TI's. In case of counter will they be ignored? So a "retain a possession" won't inhibit a counter?

Mentality, tempo and passing will all be overwritten.

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I started a new save with Gladbach after I played half way through a season with them and wasn't to happy with the result but saw some improvement, so I wanted to start all over again with the things I learned.

I think I have to take that back...I don't see any improvement tbh...

This year I just can't get any system to work...

As I said I'm playing a 4-1-4-1:

SWs - distribute to center backs - Y. Sommer

FBa (right) - F. Johnson

CBcover (center right) - A. Dominguez

CBstopper (center left) - Alvarez Balenta

FBs (left) - O. Wendt

BWMd (center DM) - Kramer

WMs (right) - sit narrow, cut inside, dribble less - Hermann/Hahn

B2Bs (right CM) - Romero

RPMs (left CM) - Xhaka, Tielemanns

WMa (left) - sit narrow, cut inside, dribble less - Traore, Hazard

CFs - shoot less often - Kruse

counter and flexible

TI's: Retain possession, play out of defence, work ball into box, get stuck in, be more disciplined

I'm not creating chances of any kind...and I don't see why? :(

I'm conceding mostly from crosses, corners and long distance shots...

But the main problem is that i don't see my team doing what they are suposed to do: No counter attacks. If there is a chance the player with the ball is not playing fast enough and the defence can get behind the ball and the counter possibility is over. But then they don't start playing a possession oriented game, they lose the ball fast due to some rly rly stupid passes or dribblings...

edit: Added the players I mostly play with...

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Re: Mentality, for me counter-attacking football is about taking risk with ball and attack with speed, you have to give your players the freedom to take risks. If you are playing on a counter-mentality, then your players will be told to play it safe, and safe when under pressure is to just lump it upfield, not play a defence splitting pass to the attacker who makes a run in behind. Look at some of the great teams of Sir Alex Ferguson, he knew how to play on the counter, and he gave his players the freedom to express themselves, as well as imploring his players to take risks.

Now, to prove my point further, I started a new save with AS Roma, wanting to play a patient possession-based game, and started out with a control-mentality. What I ended up with was a defensive mentality, averaging 60+ possession. That is because I use possession as both a defensive and an attacking tool. By using a lower mentality framework, I want my players to take less risks with the ball, and be less adventorous, patiently probing until the opposition looses its concentration and you get your opportunites.

I think it is really important to be aware of what you want your players to do when choosing a mentality, don't trust the description, it is so important to watch what is happening on the pitch.

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Re: Mentality, for me counter-attacking football is about taking risk with ball and attack with speed, you have to give your players the freedom to take risks. If you are playing on a counter-mentality, then your players will be told to play it safe, and safe when under pressure is to just lump it upfield, not play a defence splitting pass to the attacker who makes a run in behind. Look at some of the great teams of Sir Alex Ferguson, he knew how to play on the counter, and he gave his players the freedom to express themselves, as well as imploring his players to take risks.

Now, to prove my point further, I started a new save with AS Roma, wanting to play a patient possession-based game, and started out with a control-mentality. What I ended up with was a defensive mentality, averaging 60+ possession. That is because I use possession as both a defensive and an attacking tool. By using a lower mentality framework, I want my players to take less risks with the ball, and be less adventorous, patiently probing until the opposition looses its concentration and you get your opportunites.

I think it is really important to be aware of what you want your players to do when choosing a mentality, don't trust the description, it is so important to watch what is happening on the pitch.

Last year I played a counter-attacking tactic with BVB. I used attacking mentality...this year I want to play 'classic' counters and if no counter-attack (not the same as counter attacking strategy) is possible I want to play possession football. So in this case I think counter mentality is just right for this case. Correct me if I'm wrong?!

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Yes, you are absolutely right, but does the 'classic' counters happen often enough when you only have 1 advanced player? as many others on here have pointed out, a counter happens when you have a numerical advantage upfield, and since your wide players are helping out defensively (placed at ml/mr instead of AML/AMLR) and you don't have an attacking role in the middle of the pitch I can't really see how the counters will work.

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Yes, you are absolutely right, but does the 'classic' counters happen often enough when you only have 1 advanced player? as many others on here have pointed out, a counter happens when you have a numerical advantage upfield, and since your wide players are helping out defensively (placed at ml/mr instead of AML/AMLR) and you don't have an attacking role in the middle of the pitch I can't really see how the counters will work.

So you would change the ML/R to AML/R? Won't I lose defensive shape if i do this? And the RPM to an Advanced Midfielder with attack?

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If you have the aml/amr on support duty they will still defend, and you can tweak their PI's to your liking. I would keep the RPM as it is, and change the b2b to a CM-A with move into channels, but I would only do all this if you feel you're not seeing the play you want, if it ain't broke don't fix it ;)

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Have any of you tried to create Atletico madrids counter attacking tactic?

I can't get a tactic working that looks like football...how am I supposed to get a tactic going that looks like someone elses tactic? :confused:

If you have the aml/amr on support duty they will still defend, and you can tweak their PI's to your liking. I would keep the RPM as it is, and change the b2b to a CM-A with move into channels, but I would only do all this if you feel you're not seeing the play you want, if it ain't broke don't fix it

I actually did this but it dosn't fixed anything tbh...no counter attacking and no retaining possession...

I'm far from saying 'I won't play FM anymore' but I must admit that I'm getting rly frustrated :( I feel like I play FM for the first time :(

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Well, the game of course has its limitations, and as always some things are a bit overpowered. The 3d view looks like an absolute cluster**** at times, and sometimes look like a comedy roadshow, and that can only add to the frustration. For me at least it helped switching to 2D, to get a better view of what was wrong with my gameplan.

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Mentality, tempo and passing will all be overwritten.

That's probably the most enlightening comment in the whole thread (no offence everyone else!!)

That completely removes the myth that your entire tactic needs to be based around high tempo direct passing which is resulting in a lot of people losing the ball instantly and going back on the back foot. So a slower based short passing possession orientated tactic is probably the more appropriate way to go if you want a good counter tactic as it will automatically switch to direct passing when the chance arises but in the meantime you can at least keep the ball for longer and possibly create other chances.

Hmmm might give this a crack after work!!

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That's probably the most enlightening comment in the whole thread (no offence everyone else!!)

That completely removes the myth that your entire tactic needs to be based around high tempo direct passing which is resulting in a lot of people losing the ball instantly and going back on the back foot. So a slower based short passing possession orientated tactic is probably the more appropriate way to go if you want a good counter tactic as it will automatically switch to direct passing when the chance arises but in the meantime you can at least keep the ball for longer and possibly create other chances.

Hmmm might give this a crack after work!!

The counter mentality already does this.

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That's probably the most enlightening comment in the whole thread (no offence everyone else!!)

That completely removes the myth that your entire tactic needs to be based around high tempo direct passing which is resulting in a lot of people losing the ball instantly and going back on the back foot. So a slower based short passing possession orientated tactic is probably the more appropriate way to go if you want a good counter tactic as it will automatically switch to direct passing when the chance arises but in the meantime you can at least keep the ball for longer and possibly create other chances.

Hmmm might give this a crack after work!!

Pleeeease tell me that you have success with it...so I know it's my fault my team sucks :D

I'm rly frustrated about the performance of my team with my counter tactic approach...

I maybe will start a new save with some big team and see if I can have some success so the fun is coming back :)

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I find the journey towards getting a set of tactics the way you want it to work is the most enjoyable part. After that it just becomes a demolition job as you sweep everything in your path!

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I play Standard and Flexible with Shorter Passing, Play out of Defence, Push up higher and Close down much more.

I have some fantastic counter attacks!!

I play one IF (S) and one IF (A) and a CF (S)

The IF (A) always stays higher up the pitch, so when the ball is cleared and he picks it up, the whole team rush out!

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I find the journey towards getting a set of tactics the way you want it to work is the most enjoyable part. After that it just becomes a demolition job as you sweep everything in your path!

Well, same over here but if I can't see anything near the way I want it to be and no improvement when changing things then it's not that much fun :/

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Pleeeease tell me that you have success with it...so I know it's my fault my team sucks :D

I'm rly frustrated about the performance of my team with my counter tactic approach...

I maybe will start a new save with some big team and see if I can have some success so the fun is coming back :)

I've taken to trying this now. 4-2-3-1 on counter setting with the aim of getting my team to use the ball well. Don't want to make it too slow though otherwise the counter attacks won't manifest

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I have been working on a replica of Simeone's Atletico Madrid style for over a year. Got reasonably close in FM14, but now with FM15, lots have changed...

It is very hard to consistently avoid conceding goals. Because Defending without conceding free kicks, corners and throw in in dangerous zones is so hard. My current version is incredibly effective against any virtually any opposition in open play, but as soon as the other team gets a set piece high up the pitch, I start sweating bullets. Not because they always score directly from the set piece, but because it is so hard to clear the ball far enough to push out and avoid getting that panicky defending in an overloaded box after the set piece. I have no idea how to remedy this, but I also know that this is super tricky in real life. The Champions League final comes to mind, with Real only looking dangerous from set pieces for most of the game.

My biggest problem with this tactic, however, is the attacking play. My forward line has terrible movement off the ball, and I guess as a result my deeper players have to pass the ball straight to them. With longer passes this makes it very easy for defenders to break in front, or close the forward down. It is extremely rare to see an effective through pass into space with a good run to match it. Happens once or twice every 3-4 games. This is only a problem against very strong teams. Against weaker teams my tactic allows us to dominate possession and set up chances with overlapping wingbacks and shorter passing in the final third. But against a very strong team, we need to have good runs and passes into space to create chances. I understand from the feedback thread that these issues are being looked at, so hopefully a patch will improve things for those of us who want to go an alternative route to total possession. But I think the game is set up to favor possession based tactics in the first place, most likely because that's the way most people want to play.

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Many of the issues you have, I have too. It's really hard to make a low possession tactic to work! Are you using a 442 or how does it look like?

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what i find when playing this way though is that your penned in and cant get out and also get done by set pieces or an individual error. id love to create a mourinho/ athletico madrid style tactic but because of the issues i find it hard to get right.

i would like to know how to play with rapid transition, i've been creating alot of tactics and always sturggle with transition from defence to attack after i won the ball back in my own penalty area, my player seems to pass slowly and pass backward allowing opposition player to either mark my wingers/forward or cover back the space they left behind. and i didnt use any of the possession TI's or PI's

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Nobody with some answers to my questions? :/

Can you post your tactic, Hanga?

My joy was short Im afraid. After looking good in the beginning the tactic is no longer working and I constantly loose the ball.

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1- When your side has the numbers advantage then they'll spring a counter yes, the ME requirements have to be met for this to happen.

2 - Yups they play normal.

When a counter attack happens what will happens is the players will be (automatically) given direct passing, the highest possible mentality and tempo for the duration of the move. When the ME deems the move to have finished then they will revert back to the norm.

Regarding point 2, it sounds like the user doesnt have any tactical control over counters. If it is, as you say, all 'under the hood' initiated and ME controlled then the user doesnt have any say or control at all. That makes counter setting redundant and labelled incorrectly.

It would also override user instructions for possession set ups if the ME ignores your team set up and PI's and plays a direct counter instead of keeping the ball because 'xyz' conditions have been met under the hood.

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