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Macha

Having problem in organising defense? You can give this a try. It might work

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(I gave this comment on steam last month. it is working well still, so hopefully can help some people here)

Before that, let me run a background of myself.

Played Championship Manager since the first edition came out. I didnt want to play every edition because it is just bad for life, so usually ill play every 2 years edition. However, last edition that i played FM was 2012. Much have changed.

Like many of you, i got excited when i got the game during Beta. Tried Leeds, first friendly i got thrashed 5-2 by a team i cant even pronounce or remember. Next game with another minnows i lost 4-1. Read on discussions here many were complaining on the defenders, so I only played again last Thursday. Took Nottingham Forest this time.

Not as bad as Leeds, but my team struggle to control ANY games, be it friendly or competitive games. I'll be honest, I reload so many times to understand the game better, and also just furious with the team defending. In the end, again, ill be honest here, I just took vacation 60% of the time, and the results were fantastic. Did it until the season ended, got promoted, but obviously this is no way to play the game. This is not Assistant Football Manager.

Then suddenly I remember that in FM2012, there is a slider that controls how much your player should be creative, push up, etc. Why did they remove it?

My bad, after replaying the game, it is actually there, under Tactics -Players Tab. Also if you click any of the players on formation, you could change the Personal Instructions as well. Now, in my opinion, THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!

Step 1: SET YOUR CORE

I set on personal instruction

4-2-3-1 Wide, with 2 Central Midfielders, standard, Flexible -

Central Defender Stopper, Press More & Hold Position

Central Defender Cover, Press Less & Hold Position

Deep Lying Playmaker, Defend Hold position (automatic)

Central Midfielder, Defend Hold position (automatic)

In this formation, I use blocks of 4-6, with 4 "static" players

4-1-2-2-1, with 2 wingers, standard, structured, Offside Trap

Central Defender Defend, Hold Position

Central Defender Defend, Hold Position

Deep Lying Playmaker, Defend Hold position

In this formation, I use blocks of 3-7, with 3 "static" players

4-4-2. Attacking, flexible (i rarely use though)

Central Defender Stopper, Press More & Hold Position

Central Defender Cover, Press Less & Hold Position

Deep Lying Playmaker, Defend Hold position (automatic)

In this formation, I use blocks of 3-7, with 3 "static" players

So the first thing to do is to make sure your players are in sufficient defensive position and hold a firm structure. You can change the other personal instructions as you see fit.

Step 2: DO NOT USE CLOSE DOWN MORE/LESS in TEAM INSTRUCTIONS!

I have a believe that once you set on Close Down More/Less, it sets for the WHOLE TEAM, which is why defending looks so disorganize.

I've been using these 2 steps since Sunday Evening, starting with friendlies and I've seen MASSIVE IMPROVEMENTS on Defense. I'm not sure the hotfix today further help the erratic defence, but I already saw improvements since Sunday Evening. (since hotfix, most of the time defense did ok, but of course, will still leak goals occasionally)

It is also very pleasing to watch my team break down attack and counter quickly. The only problem I have now is I cant stop playing :)

These are the competitive results since I started using these two Steps:

Sunderland 1-0

Milwall 2-1

Everton 1-1

Tottenham 1-1

Aston Villa 1-1

Everton 2-2 (Capital Cup, loss on penalties)

Chelsea 0-1

Wolves 3-1

Swansea 1-0

Stoke 2-0

Man City 5-2 (they got a player sent off late 1st half)

Newcastle 1-1

Liverpool 1-0

As you can see, results were realistic (though i must admit im winning too much, maybe its still early, but im 3rd now). I do expect to be beaten eventually. Only have 3 Good Premiership Player Standard in my team.

I got crazy results in my first season. 6-4, 5-3. leading 3-0 then conceded all 3 (still, Arsenal got that recently), but 1 thing for sure, defense does not seem ridiculous anymore, and in some games I am dominating, especially home games. I almost gave up playing after season 1.

Well, this work for me, hope it will help for you. And thus, in my game, I can say with certainty there is nothing wrong with the game tactics, and having a great time :)

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Loved yours second step, doing wonders for my ManCity tactic, and I believe it would have been the solution to my Chelsea one too, tanks a lot

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As far as I know "Hold Position" affects attacking movement, not the level of closing down, so it shouldn't make no difference to defending? (Unless your centre backs was constantly being caught on attacking runs...)

Also, it seems to be a default value for CD's with defending duty, but not stopper or cover. Anyone know why that is?

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As far as I know "Hold Position" affects attacking movement, not the level of closing down, so it shouldn't make no difference to defending? (Unless your centre backs was constantly being caught on attacking runs...)

Also, it seems to be a default value for CD's with defending duty, but not stopper or cover. Anyone know why that is?

That is correct. When you Hold Position defensively, you are telling the players not to make any forward runs. Therefore, when you have a core of 3-4 players Hold Position, you would be less prone to counter attacking. The Player would be very incline to hold Formation, not committed to dive into tackle (unless the player has the PPM), while waiting for support from teammates while keeping opposition at bay.

When you use a combination of Stopper+Cover, they do not Hold their position automatically, as the Stopper would be the first aggressor to attack incoming ball, and the Defense Cover would cover any lose ball.

On the other hand, you could also use Hold Position for attacking players, which I believe, is different. You might want to have a player who act as a pivot to move the ball around, which would be a good choice for less mobile players, but with good passing ability.

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very good post now to put it in my liverpool save ( maybe brendan rodgers should look at this our defence is ins shambles especially with lovren GODLY i mean GODLY 7 composure)

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A good core is very beneficial for your team defensively. It allows you to survive being under pressure, especially in the most important area of the pitch. If you have a good shape there, you'll be fine.

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As far as I know "Hold Position" affects attacking movement, not the level of closing down, so it shouldn't make no difference to defending? (Unless your centre backs was constantly being caught on attacking runs...)

Also, it seems to be a default value for CD's with defending duty, but not stopper or cover. Anyone know why that is?

True, but it also effects the closing down of your players. If you go and put 2 CDs on cover duty with Hold Position selected, you'll notice them both sitting deep and not closing down until they absolutely have to. I'm just saying this as an extreme example, but it doesn't just effect attacking movements, it does also effect how they close down from my experience at least.

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Hi Macha. I implemented your recommendations last night with regards to the Close down more/Hold position with a core 4 using 4231 wide. Initial results are solid and can certainly see the benefits you are suggesting. With the right AMC settings it also offers a nice pivot option in Midfield.

I note your suggestions above with regards to certain formations. I have been working on a 352/532 (3 CD, 2 WB, 2 CM, 1 AMC, 2 ST) and it has been working quite well but I generally am not happy with the defending. I just wanted to ask your advice on how you would implement your "core" with a back 3 formation. Would you turn it into a 5 or take a different approach?

Thanks again

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Hi Macha. I implemented your recommendations last night with regards to the Close down more/Hold position with a core 4 using 4231 wide. Initial results are solid and can certainly see the benefits you are suggesting. With the right AMC settings it also offers a nice pivot option in Midfield.

I note your suggestions above with regards to certain formations. I have been working on a 352/532 (3 CD, 2 WB, 2 CM, 1 AMC, 2 ST) and it has been working quite well but I generally am not happy with the defending. I just wanted to ask your advice on how you would implement your "core" with a back 3 formation. Would you turn it into a 5 or take a different approach?

Thanks again

Interesting question. I've wanted to developed a back 3 system with another team, but I'm having too much fun with my Nottingham Forest :p

I'll look into it though, but I don't think i'll be developing a team with a block of 5-5. It's too passive for my style. Chances are I'll try block of 4-6, with 2 CD on Defend + 1 CD on Stopper/Cover, with 1 Holding Midfielder. I'll use Stopper if opposition have strong forward but use cover if they have a quick forward

Still, I've read somewhere on this system of 3-7 works like magic:

2 CD

1 Half Back

2 WB

2 CM

2 Wingers

1 Striker

It's a hybrid between back 3-4-3 and 4-3-3 system. I haven't tried it myself though.

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