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Jambo98

FM15 - The community formation experiment

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Don't want to be that guy that shoots you down straight off the bat, and I know you've already made it clear that you know it will be difficult to pull off... but that formation is madness!

If you get it working, I will be very impressed. At least it's a challenge!

Haha yeap I know right. As I said, right off the top of my head (killing downtime at work). Already got a couple of other ideas too, but gifted a pretty standard formation I want to try drastic and odd ideas, see what happens!

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Hmm i dont see why its mad at all. Its not that different to my 451 which works very well :)

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Hmm i dont see why its mad at all. Its not that different to my 451 which works very well :)

Yeap my main tactic on my main save is pretty much the same as your 451, this will be similar, but with two central players providing the runs from deep. I think the Wide Mids will have to be reigned in a lot as I will need them to be providing the midfield stability.

I think the positioning of the Complete Wing Backs will also be interesting, there is danger that too many players will be getting forward leaving me pretty exposed.

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Yeap my main tactic on my main save is pretty much the same as your 451, this will be similar, but with two central players providing the runs from deep. I think the Wide Mids will have to be reigned in a lot as I will need them to be providing the midfield stability.

I think the positioning of the Complete Wing Backs will also be interesting, there is danger that too many players will be getting forward leaving me pretty exposed.

Yeah, the reason it looks mad to me is mainly the 4 midfielders. I'd be tempted to go for a fluid/very fluid philosophy in an attempt to get them all contributing because it looks like you have no-one that will be putting in a tackle in the centre of the park. Once you do this, you could play some not-so-creative players in the WP(S) role - maybe quite defensive players actually. They'd still attract the ball a little bit, but you could channel the creation through those CM(A)'s//CWB(A)'s.

It'll be a challenge and like I said, i'll be very interested to see the results.

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So what are we all aiming for here? We know it largely can be done whatever the formation (it pleases me no end that the ME is that good) but we could end up finding little exploits and that's not what I'm after really. Its increased my determination to make any player work as at big clubs I generally cut loose anyone who doesn't sync into the tactics I set up.

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So what are we all aiming for here? We know it largely can be done whatever the formation (it pleases me no end that the ME is that good) but we could end up finding little exploits and that's not what I'm after really. Its increased my determination to make any player work as at big clubs I generally cut loose anyone who doesn't sync into the tactics I set up.

I know this is straying into the realms of philosophy here, but does an experiment need an aim?

I see it as more of an exercise in the mechanics of developing a tactic within certain constraints (we all have one shape, the same squad and limited chance to change the personnel). To expand on what you say about almost any formation being capable of producing results, this experiment actually brings another factor into play that is not always considered; working with what you have. By placing the formation constraints, it forces you to get creative with certain players/their roles in order to get the best out of your squad. I feel this is an area that a lot of FM'ers (myself included) gloss over at times in favour of the bigger picture of an overall tactical vision, where they eventually acquire the parts of the puzzle by transfers until it functions well.

llama3 did a great post the other week about having variety in your squad, and I believe this experiment runs alongside that post in terms of encouraging players to use what they have available. When taking over a team (particularly in the higher leagues), you usually find at least a semi-varied squad. But it is very easy to have a fire-sale of those players who don't fit your tactical decisions, buying in a load of similar players who you can rotate - keeping the variables constant, if you will. I have certainly found the variety in skill sets among players to be a potent weapon when you are tied to a formation. Alongside the tactical variables, they are the main way you can mix something up in-game without having to alter the shape.

Anyway, sorry if that was a bit of an offshoot ramble of a post!

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Bear in mind this is literally my first save in FM15, so I'm new to certain roles and how they work. My line up before my first competitive game.

f32f4b49ce03de14ab6dfb02a2112d4d.png

Ignore the players selected. I'll be changing that.

General Style

Control/Flexible

My general style of play will be direct so control makes sense. I don't feel I need to be particularly structured or fluid for now.

Defence

I always like a balanced defence. I've never been a big fan of straying away from a D/D central partnership, anytime I've experimented with Covers or Stoppers it just feels like it's more of a hindrance than a benefit. Just one of those FM nit picks I'm sure everyone has. Both full backs push up and play aggressively with the space ahead of them although the left back is more cautious due to the CM on his side being more expressive.

Midfield

Here's where things get interesting. I've decided to go for an Ancelotti Milan style set up. I signed Sidi Kieta on a free as a ball winner/Gattuso type player to protect my DLP/Pirlo. Since AMCs are common in Spain I sense that playing my Pirlo role in DMC might be more problematic, so I've opted to play my DLP mostly on the right side of my central midfield where he should find space to operate. In the center I just want my MCc to make runs forward and support the front men, my playing style is Direct and he'll need to be in the right positions to catch up with the play. The left hand side is a runner/Seedorf type role, I find B2B midfielder role to be too aggressive so RPM seems like a option I'll experiment with for now.

Attack

Simple DLF/AF combination. No need for anything fancy.

Transfers

b51b188bcefd3b98b2db87af5df337ed.png

Had Arsenal and Man Utd in a bidding war for Musacchio. Happy that made Arsenal stump up 21m up front cash. Helped me bring in staff and my incoming players.

Seems like everybody is on the Romero train in these parts lately :D. He fits well into my Seedorf role. Kieta is a feisty ball winner and free, so why not? Germain is a Striker I'm hoping to retrain to play my CM/A (Kaka) role, as he's already contempt in the MC position.

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End of Season Review

I have to say that this has been an enjoyable season on the whole even if at times it was frustrating although the frustrating times were due to my laziness.

The main weaknesses of the 3-4-3 is the space between the defence and midfield (similar I suppose to a 4-4-2) and only 3 in defence which spread very wide at times leaving huge gaps. On the flip side it's very good at scoring goals.

I started off the season with the setup noted in my previous post but I changed to the following setup around half way through the Europa League group which I was the stage I disappointingly went out at.

Tactical%20setup_zpswdgyvn5a.jpg

As you can see it's very attack minded and I probably would have done better in the Europa League had I employed a more cautious approach like a counter strategy.

In terms of the league I was surprised that we were able to win with the "we'll score more than you" philosophy which resulted in some very high scoring games like a 5-4 win over Atlético or the 7-4 win over Elche.

The league table below demonstrates quite clearly what our strengths and weaknesses were with 120 goals scored and 68 conceded. Another positive was the top 3 goalscorers came from Villarreal beating out such players as Messi & Ronaldo et al.

League%20stats%20and%20transfers_zpsmmknjh4z.jpg

End%20of%20Season%20Squad_zpsmwy7tad4.jpg

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4-3-2-1 DM Narrow

I have finally finished pre-season and I thought I'd give the group an update. We're unbeaten against largely lower league opposition but the manner of the victories has been very pleasing indeed. I'm really enjoying having to eke out dominance from this formation and I've finally mastered my 'style' - bore them into submission. The opposition are suffocated and are rarely able to string passes together into my half thanks to a high and wide roaming presence. I've been watching it all on Comprehensive highlights and, honestly, to have conceded just one goal in six games is probably fair. The team just camps in the space between the centre circle and the opposition box and we wait for a mistake. As I said before, goals come from everywhere if not prolifically but it will take some time to figure out my best eleven as they are all so versatile it's unreal!

OoCbGdK.png

The key to finding the right shape and possession lay in a bit of trial and error to fix obvious problems and then simplicity. I settled for three of each in the end as follows:

  • Play Wider

  • Push Higher Up

  • Roam From Positions

  • Retain Possession

  • Pass Into Space

  • Work Ball Into Box

I also had to have a bit of a play around with the roles as I soon realised that we only had two or three midfielders out of 10 capable of the defensive side of the game - a mini-injury crisis and our season would be over. It seemed pointless having a load of natural playmakers try and operate in a Central Midfielder role (which requires marking and tackling) as over time it was obvious this was stifling their talent. After sorting out the forward line roles it dawned on me that we were essentially playing a 4-3-3. I have included a snap of my first pre-season game compared to my last - you can see the transformation the tactic has undergone just by the average position comparisons below:

AbXSIXe.png

Then came the hammer blow - we got Dynamo Moscow in the Europa League playoff draw. Away first, natch. Here's my roles and duties for a very loose first/second eleven:

caljwJH.png

I would really like to get Cani into that Roaming Playmaker role but I think I'll need to dip into the transfer market for a proper Second Striker in his stead. I forgot to mention that I now play Highly Structured mentality and a mix of Standard / Control / Attacking depending on how much I need to speed play up

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First update.

Having played through my friendlies my tactic an preferred starting 11 looks like this:

tactic_zps6hschfqt.png

I was toying with the idea of dropping Bruno back into the BPD role but his 'plays short passes' PPM is putting that off.

Gone for Attacking/Fluid philosophy.

Teaminst_zpsmfsml5mh.png

Transfers

Didn't really want to sell Musacchio but after bids from Arsenal and SLB he became unhappy, the only solution was to ship him out, Balanta (obviously) replaced him. The young Vallejo came in to add some depth to the back 3. Radosevic on loan completed my window.

Transfers_zps2wykdxig.png

Now onwards to the season, although Barcelona for my 2nd game isn't exactly ideal.

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Nice thread! Would really like to be a part of it, if there's any formations left? Otherwise it's still an interesting one to follow.

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A strong start.

9d332314659b12a7e838b79128148eab.png

Avoided defeat to the "big two" and was a 92nd minute penalty away from winning against Madrid. Chicharito! Every single FM he's my peeve.

b6032942c42b27448042a371129cb414.png

Current tactic/line up as it stands. My results are all the more impressive as Sergio Asenjo got injured in pre season and has only just returned to training, but Juan Carlos has played well to be fair. Tomas Pina and Juanme Costa joined him on the long term injury bench. I've retrained Cheryshev to play Left Back to replace Costa and he's performed impressively, something for you all to consider there before you terminate his loan.

Luciano Vietto and Giovani combine fantastically up front. Vietto has 7 in 7 so far. Uche is complaining about a lack of football which encouraged my decision to retrain 17 year old Leiva into a false 9 and he's developing nicely.

League Table

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Season over and generally I'd say a success...

FuHwysp.png?1

Wouldn't expect to break the Barca/Real domination in the first season (especially when they get 100 pts each), so happy with 3rd, but I know I made some errors during the season so could/should have done better.

Won Europa League which included some memorable performances, such a winning 2-0 Away at Spurs.

Copa del Ray was disappointing, but heavily rotated in 2nd leg against Oviedo and paid for it.

Tactic finished looking like this with players shown those who made most appearances through the season.

Control/Fluid

r55Kzw6.png?1

9FISp4c.png?1

with NO PI's.

Going to go back to other saves now, but may dip into this now and then...

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Wow, i feel bad for having neglected this a bit the last week or so! I am really amazed at the quality of posts and the details people are going into. Also the brilliant examples of the fact that people can take these formations and take this team to great seasons :)

A couple of people have asked for a formation, there are a few left so random generator hsa come up with :)

RLC - 352 Sweeper

Ferdiad - 4213 DM wide

The level of interest and progress has been great - i hope others are taking as much as i am from studying and understanding the different approaches taken by everyone.

We have progressed so quickly that i guess we could try a second exercise - Different team, random formations again (would make sure no one is given a "repeat"). It might be a bit too repetative though so will take views as to whether anyone feels its worth while, or whether we leave it a while and maybe start a new experiment later once say a new patch is out.

Thanks to everyone who is continuing to contribute. I cant take any credit for the idea (as we established last year!) or even for my own analysis as i really struggled to get into this save :( All i did was build the VB code and run the randomizer :D

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Wow, i feel bad for having neglected this a bit the last week or so! I am really amazed at the quality of posts and the details people are going into. Also the brilliant examples of the fact that people can take these formations and take this team to great seasons :)

A couple of people have asked for a formation, there are a few left so random generator hsa come up with :)

RLC - 352 Sweeper

Ferdiad - 4213 DM wide

The level of interest and progress has been great - i hope others are taking as much as i am from studying and understanding the different approaches taken by everyone.

We have progressed so quickly that i guess we could try a second exercise - Different team, random formations again (would make sure no one is given a "repeat"). It might be a bit too repetative though so will take views as to whether anyone feels its worth while, or whether we leave it a while and maybe start a new experiment later once say a new patch is out.

Thanks to everyone who is continuing to contribute. I cant take any credit for the idea (as we established last year!) or even for my own analysis as i really struggled to get into this save :( All i did was build the VB code and run the randomizer :D

What you could do, and this is just a quick shower thought :D...

After every season finished with Villarreal, you get another random formation to play with for the following season, with only 3 transfers allowed again?

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What you could do, and this is just a quick shower thought :D...

After every season finished with Villarreal you get another random formation to play with for the following season, with only 3 transfers allowed again?

Really like this idea!!!!

Hopefully will get an update on how the 4-1-4-1 went for me.

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How about you just assign multiple players to the same formation if demand is so high? So if, for talking's sake, there's 10 formations but 20 sign-ups, then we get two people using the 4222 instead of limiting it to just 1 person on that shape.

Also might help people better understand their shape more by reading what the other person is doing wrong/right. There is scope for plagiarism here, of course, but I think people will realise that plagiarism isn't in the spirit of this thread/experiment.

I haven't had a chance to play FM in the last week or so unfortunately. I created my tactic etc but never got round to actually using it.

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Okay, I'll start by acknowledging that I'm a bit lazy :D So I am just going to link you to images taken from my game instead of cutting them into forum-friendly screenshots. So, with that out of the way, stuff:

I was assigned the 433 narrow. Which is a delightful(ly awful) little shape:

GK

RB-RCB-LCB-LB

RCM-CM-LCM

RS-CF-LS

Loads of width available :D

Roles an' tingz.

Shouts an' tingz.

Where to start? Hmmm. Probably with my mentality and structure, I guess. But first I'll quickly explain what I want from the shape.

It's quite simple - I want us to sit deep, make us hard to break down, get the ball and break at pace. Midfield isn't important - I want to utilize my pace and central clout to burst through the centre of the pitch and score goals. I want us to be the ultimate counter attacking machine, essentially.

Defensive - without a defensive mentality I am not sure how to best utilize three forwards. If we can dominate a game then three forwards are useful for creating and exploiting space, but dominating is unlikely with a flat central trio and no wide men to speak of bar defenders. So Defensive is used to try and encourage my strikers (bar the most central one) to track back and get stuck in.

Highly Structured - I've got quite a few specialised roles here and I also want us to be tough and hard to break down, which Highly Structured is useful for as it limits creativity and ability to deviate from the Defensive nature of sitting deep and remaining compact.

Next I should explain roles, so briefly:

GK & CBs: self-explanatory, default roles.

CWB/As: One on each side is usually against what I tend to do as a manager but I need to create width of some sort and there's no better way to do that than CWBs imo. They'll bomb forward and create some sort of width for us.

CM/D: I need an Anchor (it's essential in my humble opinion) and a CM/D is the closest thing to a DM/D or A/D that I can get.

BWM/S: Perhaps goes against my idea of keeping us difficult to break down as he'll be out of position but I want to experiment with a BWM as it isn't a position I ever use these days (used to use it a lot on FM13 and before that though). I don't want an Attacking role here because I want to leave all of the attacking to my front three but I do need support for those strikers so I don't want a defensive role here. CM/S and DLP/S to be considered as alternatives.

AP/S: Much like the BWM/S, I don't want an attacking role but I don't want a defensive role. I am not sure that a DLP/S will get far enough forward to support (final third area) so I opted for AP/S. Will consider RPM/S and DLP/S as alternatives if this doesn't work out.

DF/S: Well i want my front three to all behave in different manners so as to create space of some sort and a DF/S will help us defensively and on someone like Uche who is fairly quick, I should be able to break forward at pace, especially if Uche wins the ball through his hard work.

DLF/S: Vietto is capable of passing fairly well. I considered him as the T/A but I think GdS is more creative as well as being a better finisher so ultimately I wanted the more creative and capable player to be the centrepiece.

T/A: I want someone to stay high and central but also find space where it is available and T/A is perfect. Also because of the lack of strikers I think that GdS is perfect in the truest version of a playmaker (what he does best) role but in a striker position. I feel that I've explained this poorly but I hope you get what I mean :D Basically, he is a playmaker by nature and a Treq. is a playmaker role so it's perfect that he can be a Treq. in ST as if I was playing him at CAM he'd probably be a Treq. anyway.

Any questions feels free to ask. Following me so far? Good! Time for shouts...

More Direct Passing: Like I said above, I wanted to counter attack as swiftly as possible. Direct Passing allows this. I considered Route One but don't want to play hoof ball :D

Pass Into Space: We have pace in the team and hopefully our deepness will invite teams onto us, allowing us to exploit the space and really hurt teams on the break.

Play Wider: We are very centralised having 8 of our 10 players in central roles so I want us to try and spread play a little. May drop this.

Higher Tempo: Defensive drops tempo and I want a high tempo to suit a counter-attacking game. This was more or less a given when I decided I wanted to play a swift counter attacking game.

Other Notes:

- We have 2 strikers and 1 CAM playing at ST. I must sign at least one ST, probably two.

- We have a very flairy, lightweight midfield and that is worrying. I need to bring in a legbreaker in midfield. :D

- Defence is quality so ideally I won't lose any of them but selling Musacchio to bring in better quality elsewhere might happen. Not able to sign two STs, one MC and a CB though so don't really want to sell anyone...

All I have to say for now, though :)

e: Forgot to say...

I haven't got any PIs bar on the two outside strikers who both have 'Move into Channels' selected (to try and create space for GdS).

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PROTIP: Check out Villarreal B, a few quality players there like Moi Gomez, Gerard Moreno and Nahuel Leiva.

I have promoted those three to my first team which bolsters my strikeforce somewhat, with Moreno and Leiva able to play there (Leiva will back-up GdS and Moreno will back-up the other two). Gomez will play the AP/S role most likely.

Have to try and sign a midfield enforcer and maybe one striker (because of Uche's injury proneness) and I'll be sorted for the season then. Possibly replace Musacchio if I have to sell.

e: Musacchio went for £20M to Arsenal and I spent it all within two days of him leaving :D El Neny, Belotti and Alvarez Balanta all come into the team. I know I'm only supposed to sign two permanent and one loan but I probably won't play past the first season anyway so it makes literally zero difference to my game.

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What you could do, and this is just a quick shower thought :D...

After every season finished with Villarreal, you get another random formation to play with for the following season, with only 3 transfers allowed again?

I am totally up for this! Would make it a proper challenge and very interesting if you end up with a very different shape for the second season. Sign us all up, Jambo!

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So I got the 352 with sweeper and it's both interesting and a bit scary. Nerver used a SW before and if I would it would propbably not be in this formation.

The formation is set up like this:

SW

DC DC

MR MC MC MC ML

ST ST

So what concerns me the most is the space between our defenders and our midfield, especially since so many teams in La Liga uses a AMC (or two). I'll try to set up the team in a rather compact block in defense. Probably play with my SW as a libero so he will push up more, hopefully he can be the DMC I would need in front of my DC's. Was also thinking of playing with a higher d-line to reduce the space between def and mid. I think I'd rather give up some space behind the defense than in front, at least when facing one (or more) AMC.

Part from that I'll probably try to play a short passing game to my mid and then a more direct game from there. Not yet done with playet roles and such but will get back later with an update.

Cheers!

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Half-season review of 5-2-3 Narrow

Alright, I've finally had the time to make it half way in the spanish season with my 5-2-3 Narrow, as elaborated in post #67.

First, a quick look at how the season has panned out:

nu6zDSD.pngeMpXQfn.pngeVixsMS.png

I'm not by any means setting the world alight, and the Europa League was especially disappointing. However, form is going upwards, and only 1 loss in the last 13 games han been good.

The formation with roles:

h6P1ofj.png

Some adjustments have been mande:

BWM/s -> CM/a: I've gone from a BWM/s with Get Further Forward to a CM/a with Close Down Much More. This is more or less the same role PI wise, but the offensive contribution from this role has been non-existant, so I'm hoping this somehow gets him more involved.

P/a -> CF/s: In retrospect, a poacher didn't fit my tactic at all. No closing down, too offensive, and no contribution in build up play meant my right side was incredibly predictable. Changing to a CF/s should help in with all these aspects, but I still feel that Uche could contribute more.

DF/s -> DF/d: The change of role encourages him to close down oppositon defensive midfielders. The two other strikers can close down defenders, and my central midfielders are already outnumbered (or so I'm told ... EVERY MATCH), so I need someone to close down this area. Actually getting more goals from this position after the change, the player in the role has a great knack for arriving late in the box and getting on the end of crosses. Duhamel, Moreno and Bruno (!) have contributed a total of 11 goals from this position.

The tactical instructions are as follows:

jQKmyTl.png

I've gone Counter and removed Push Higher Up. The reason for this is that I want the opposition to have more people upfield, so they're more vulnerable on the counter when we eventually win the ball back. I could probably drop even deeper and play with even higher tempo, but I feel like there's a decent balance in the tactic for now. I do well against the big teams, beating Atletico away, snatching a draw at Barca, and that Real Madrid manged to get all three points was a grave injustice. Against lesser clubs I struggle more, as evidenced by the Europa League campaign. Those matches were incredibly dour affairs, and I really don't feel like I have an answer to teams who play deep with this tactic. Or at least, how I play with this tactic.

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Right finally got into this. Problem with me is I just cannot start a save without getting properly stuck in, setting up staff etc. To get to a stage where I was happy to at least post what I was testing I still actually had a to rush or skip a few things I usually do such as check the youth side out etc. So feel free to let me know if I am missing something important about the club.

Initial Ideas

As I have mentioned previously in the thread I wanted to take a bit more of an unorthodox approach to a fairly standard and common formation.

Basically in a sense I wanted to get some of the different positions contributing in an almost back to front manner.

So the main feature I want to work towards is my direct running coming from the middle of the park and my play making from the wing, in a basic sense anyway.

Now I have a heap of issues that I think are likely to arise, but think it is both more time efficient (writing wise) and probably more beneficial to address them as they arise.

Shape

4141DMWPs_zps4f5f5934.png

This is the basic shape, with a rough outline of who I expect to play where.

My main idea is to have the two CM(a) bursting forward and ideally, which will likely require specific PPMs, go past the False 9 and almost act as two more forwards.

The Wide play makers will then hopefully come inside, or at least hold narrower wide positions (if that makes sense) to provide cover during transitions from defense to attack and also provide the major play making function.

Team Instructions & Mentality

4141DMMF_zps49993d7d.png

Standard as that is what I usually start with. I am toying with using Control as a base for this one, but sticking in my comfort zone here for now.

Fluid as I will be leaving a small crew behind on defense, so I want to be getting the whole team more involved in the defensive side, especially the WPs.

4141DMWPsInstructions_zps61cda2db.png

Trying to keep it fairly simple to begin. Key thoughts: Pass into space as I really want to hit those runners where possible, there are a few playmakers in the side so this could be overkill.

Push higher up, Close Down More, prevent GK Distribution and Get Stuck In to get aggressive in winning the ball back. My thinking here is if my defensive shape is going to be compromised due to the odd roles, it is better to try get that ball back quickly.

Player Instructions

Not too much here yet.

WPs - Dribble Less

CMa - Run Wide With Ball, Dribble More - As these two are going to be setup as central wingers I will likely add PI that I usually add for that role, but I am just doing this incrementally to make sure I don't have the tactic getting out of control too quickly.

DLPd - More direct passes - I want him to try hit the runners where possible, plus Bruno has decent stats for this task.

Not much else for now. Distribution setting for GK to promote retention as per usual.

Other thoughts to note:

- CWBa, I think these will be required to help force the WPs inside. Ideally they are the main source of attacking width.

- DPLd, I was considering HB or DM roles. But I need this player to still be a link to the midfield, especially as the CMa's will be getting forward often, DM is still a posibility but I felt the HB could drop back too deep too often.

- WPs are going to need a lot of analysis. There isn't a whole lot of ability to tweak them, so may consider heavily PI'd WMs.

- Wondering about trying play Narrow to get the WPs into the center more, and just generally close the potential gaps in midfield.

- Perhaps add Hold Position to the WPs

Simple stuff surely?!

Anyway, testing is going to be the best way to find out if it works!

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Some interesting ideas, particularly with the other formations with 3 up front. There were times in my save (3-4-3) that I could have done with having 3 in the center of midfield and moving the wide players back to full back. Although that's probably more to do with me favouring a flat back 4.

Good idea Durvin with the defensive forward, helping the midfield was my thinking too however I went for a F9 due to the lack of someone I felt would do the defensive forward role in a fashion I'd have been happy with. Will be interested to see how it pans out for you.

Mark - I like your ideas with the 4-1-4-1 and looking forward to seeing how the wide playmakers do for you. Is there the PI for them to "sit narrower" for them?

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i'd like to have a go if there are still formations available!

Not many, but:

wereldbol - 4213DM Wide

Aware that i never responded on what we should do next - The idea of changing to a new formation for those who want to do season 2 sounds interesting (if a logistical pain for me to track!). Unfortunately i myself canned my save on this, it came at a time when i was getting really fed up with the current ME. So i might not even take part myself in season 2, but maybe i can restart and fire through a season.

Will give it another day or so for people to finish season 1, there is no real need for us all to go at the same speed, but if people are then interested in changing to a new random formation for season 2, with the signing restrictions in place, that could be a really interesting exercise and bring in things like retraining, making the best of a player in a different role to that you have used previously, etc :)

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Jambo - I'm still interested in doing season one if there's a formation free, even the 2-5-3!

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my apologies reggiana, i thought i posted a formation for you

Reggiana - 424 DM Wide

Sorry the random generator doesnt seem to like the 253! Thats still a pretty adventurous formation :)

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Sorry the random generator doesnt seem to like the 253! Thats still a pretty adventurous formation :)

That's alright, I'm sure I'd have quite quickly regretted it. I'll get on with the 424 DM Wide later.

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@Jambo - Shame you're pulling out of the experiment! I'd be interested to know what "issues with the ME" are giving you that much grief that you have had to stop playing for a bit. I know you have mentioned the CB issue a few times in other threads, but I don't find it to be so bad that it drives me away.

With my formation for Villareal, I found that giving one of the CB's a cover duty actually played to these situations as opposed to trying to avoid them. I would say that the Stopper role can be unnecessarily aggressive at times, but if you have a player with the skill set, a Covering Centre Back is a great thing to have if you're pushing up higher. In a way, you have to accept that these situations will arise when you are playing a high line with no DM/against opposition with an AMC, so why not account for the scenario and do your best to mop it up? As is the general wisdom amongst players, I am usually a fan of CB(d)'s in order to keep it simple, but maybe the problem lies in the other defender not dropping to cover his partner's aggression?

Just some thoughts that I've had around adopting a Covering defender anyway! Maybe you refer to other "issues" but once again, it's a shame that you've been put off by stuff like that, there's always another way of looking at it :)

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Went to work at 4am this morning and when I came home I started fm and my Villarreal save with 352 sweeper. The team is set and only had 2 friendlies left. Submited the team and started the 1st half. Woke up, and it was half time 1-0 :) Gave my team talk and made some subs. Next time I woke up the match was over - a 4-0 win with Vietto geting a hat trick.

Hopefully this is a sign of things to come for the season...

Will post my tactic and stats halfway through the season.

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Aware that i never responded on what we should do next - The idea of changing to a new formation for those who want to do season 2 sounds interesting (if a logistical pain for me to track!). Unfortunately i myself canned my save on this, it came at a time when i was getting really fed up with the current ME. So i might not even take part myself in season 2, but maybe i can restart and fire through a season.

Will give it another day or so for people to finish season 1, there is no real need for us all to go at the same speed, but if people are then interested in changing to a new random formation for season 2, with the signing restrictions in place, that could be a really interesting exercise and bring in things like retraining, making the best of a player in a different role to that you have used previously, etc :)

I would really like to keep this going a second season with a new formation at Villarreal, or at a new club. It's a fun and interesting concept!

I had also sort of given up on my Liverpool save when I found this thread. Now my joy of playing this game is back. Creating a tactic I would nerver have used otherwise is a really good exercise and I think it's something that will make me a better fm player.

Cheers!

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Went to work at 4am this morning and when I came home I started fm and my Villarreal save with 352 sweeper. The team is set and only had 2 friendlies left. Submited the team and started the 1st half. Woke up, and it was half time 1-0 :) Gave my team talk and made some subs. Next time I woke up the match was over - a 4-0 win with Vietto geting a hat trick.

Hopefully this is a sign of things to come for the season...

Will post my tactic and stats halfway through the season.

Vietto is fantastic. Currently has 12 goals in 15 starts for me. Scores so many vital point winning goals :).

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@Jambo - Shame you're pulling out of the experiment! I'd be interested to know what "issues with the ME" are giving you that much grief that you have had to stop playing for a bit. I know you have mentioned the CB issue a few times in other threads, but I don't find it to be so bad that it drives me away.

With my formation for Villareal, I found that giving one of the CB's a cover duty actually played to these situations as opposed to trying to avoid them. I would say that the Stopper role can be unnecessarily aggressive at times, but if you have a player with the skill set, a Covering Centre Back is a great thing to have if you're pushing up higher. In a way, you have to accept that these situations will arise when you are playing a high line with no DM/against opposition with an AMC, so why not account for the scenario and do your best to mop it up? As is the general wisdom amongst players, I am usually a fan of CB(d)'s in order to keep it simple, but maybe the problem lies in the other defender not dropping to cover his partner's aggression?

Just some thoughts that I've had around adopting a Covering defender anyway! Maybe you refer to other "issues" but once again, it's a shame that you've been put off by stuff like that, there's always another way of looking at it :)

Its a few things, which a lot of people consider "minor". When i try to create a tactic, i spend a lot of time on every fine detail. That being the case small details in the ME annoy me that much more, because i put such effort into managing the fine details myself, only to have a game ruined (NB - not neccesarily "lost") by these 3 or 4 things occuring a lot.

Things like the CB issue which has gone on for 2 versions, keeper distribution which has been broken for 3 patches, passbacks from a certain angle which always go out for a corner, inability to set free kicks to anything other than "shoot" when within a certain area, couple of roles which dont really work.

I saw a few posts suggesting a new patch might be imminent, so perhaps that will rekindle my interest (although sadly, the way with FM is that it ends up changing parts of the gameplay which were just fine, rather than just fixing the broken bits - result is that systems build in one patch need more heavily modified than they should really - and i dont mean plug and play/exploit tactics).

I might give this one final go to get through a season, then with a bit of luck season 2 would coincide with the patch release :)

Anyway dont want to make this into a GD type thread, the work in here from so many posters is absolutely excellent. There seems to be a bit of a general malaise around the current patch/game going by how many good threads die off, so i am even more pleased that people are willing to put such time into this little concept we have. Its fun, helps us all learn and whilst its not "realistic", if it captures our attention and encourages idea sharing, then its worth it :)

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I think if I knew there would be a 2nd season (or even possibly a 3-year plan), I think I would probably have thought more about future development of the team and tactics, with some squad building, that the 1 season version doesn't really allow. This does raise the question of whether 1 formation works over a longer period of gameplay (purely from the facet of retaining interest), but also for me whether we should start with something further down the pyramid... a Leeds level club for example.

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We could all just move to a formation with a maximum of two positional changes. I.e. Your two wingbacks become fullbacks or wide midfielders, or your three strikers become one striker and two amcs. That kind of thing

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Having 3 CCC and 2 half chances in 45 min and manage to miss them all is making me a bit upset :) Uche had 2 open goal chances but managed to shoot both at the overplayed GK who was no way near the goal...

The tactic (352 SW) seems to be doing ok though, at least we seem to create chances. Will post an update soon.

Personally I'd like a go with another tacitc as well.

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Hey guys, just a small update from me. As a reminder, i'm playing 4-2-4 Wide and this is how the roles line up:

1zqg8b4.jpg

And here's our recent form:

9tfnd3.jpg

Plenty of green - which is always a good thing - and some emphatic results to go with it.

Our run in the Copa del Rey has been phenomenal (even though we have had the luck of the draw), with us notching up 27 goals en route to the final, only conceding 1. The first leg against Valladolid was an incredible wherein Vietto netted a double hat-trick and got the first 10.0 rating i've seen in several editions of FM! Really impressive. Barca in the final though :(

Our Europa League run continues in style too with us turning the 1-0 first leg deficit into a 6-2 victory against Dnipro in the second leg. Wolfsburg await us in the last 16 which will be a real challenge, but i'm already one round further than the board expected so anything is a great result now.

Finally, the Liga BBVA form has actually continued in much the same way. The many wins have kept us in the top 5 but the draws and losses continue to rack up too meaning a real title challenge is probably now over (ridiculously difficult against Barca and Real anyway of course). I'd love to get into the top 4 to get a shot at the Champions League, but realistically Atletico will probably complete the top 3, so 4th is the highest we can hope for. That said, we have 14 games left to play so it's still completely in our hands.

The only other thing I should mention is that I used up my allowed loan signing by grabbing Angel Correa from Atletico in January for the rest of the season. I mainly brought him in as cover for Uche as he departed for the ACoN, but he has actually become a valuable part of the squad as a F9 - a role in which he excels. 9 goals in 10 starts including a hat-trick against Dnipro. Not a bad bit of business at all.

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I've just arrived at the first international (and welcome) break with my 4-3-2-1 DM Narrow so now's as good a time as any to gloat about my best ever start to a season!

dyu10Dc.png

As you can see, plenty of different scorers which is always healthy and certainly a run of form to go with it. Loving the experiment, loving the tactic. For the competitive games I thought I'd do my research on whoscored.com and keep the faith with the team that got us into the Europa League in the first place. I started off with a core of 19 (sub keeper not pictured) who either played last year or came into the club during the summer and these guys were wonderful in the four games so far. The new signings had to earn their place in the team. I made three personnel swaps each game to keep it fresh. I cannot get Cani working for the life of me no matter where I play him but on the plus side Giovani has done wonders since moving to Second Striker. A third of my goals have come from set pieces which I'm putting down the PPMs of the dos Santos brothers who take them. Cheryshev at Trequartista is outrageously good - he must make six or seven dribbles per game that either result in goals scored from free-kicks or through-balls to Giovani

SaWHksY.png

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A few matches into my 3-5-2 SW save. Not sure I will make it a full season since I've struggling so far.

The problem I've been having is scoring our chanses and it has left us with too many draws.

This is the tactic I've set up with the TI's:

u1jM955.jpg

gdtlEhO.jpg

The Libero pushes up in between the CD's and the CM(d) drops down (and if the opposition is using an AMC he will be told to man mark him) so the in matches it pans out more as a 3-1-4-2.

The problem have not been creating chanses, we usually dominate the stats - shots, possession, CCC etc. But we have a problem capitalizing on those opportunites.

Here you can see the stats from two of our matches:

Against Barca (H) 1-1

G3hCUBl.jpg

Against Granada (A) 1-1

qrDnwfq.jpg

Looking at the stats it's obvious or crossing isn't working so might try to remove the 'Earlier crossing' TI.

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

EDIT: The 'Play narrower' TI has been removed and 'Work ball into box' + 'Be more expressive' has been added.

EDIT 2: Forgot to explain my thoughts behind the tactic.

Since there's alot of space to exploit between my defense and midfield I wanted a CM with a def duty to drop down into that space for cover. I also added the TI push higer up to further reduce this space.

I went with WM(s) on the wings 'cause I don't want them to push to high up, either to attack or to close down. They seem to have a decent balance like this.

Since we're pushing high up I went with 'close down more' to try and win the ball back fast if we lose it high up the pitch to stop the opposition from exploiting the space between our d-line.

I put my defenders on short passes to get the ball to our midfield and from there I want direct passes to our fast attackers.

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Forgot the PI's so here it goes:

GK: Fewer risky passes

SW: Dribble less, close down less, pass shorter

CD's: Pass shorter

CM(d): Shoot less, dribble less, close down less, mark tighter

RPM: Shoot less, close down more

CM(a): Close down more, more risky passes, roam from position

WM's: Shoot less, more direct passes, stay wider

F9: Shoot less, more direct passes, close down much more

CF(a): Close down much more

Here is also the fixtures so far:

CIOzaBw.jpg

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EDIT: The 'Play narrower' TI has been removed and 'Work ball into box' + 'Be more expressive' has been added.

EDIT 2: Forgot to explain my thoughts behind the tactic.

Since there's alot of space to exploit between my defense and midfield I wanted a CM with a def duty to drop down into that space for cover. I also added the TI push higer up to further reduce this space.

I went with WM(s) on the wings 'cause I don't want them to push to high up, either to attack or to close down. They seem to have a decent balance like this.

Since we're pushing high up I went with 'close down more' to try and win the ball back fast if we lose it high up the pitch to stop the opposition from exploiting the space between our d-line.

I put my defenders on short passes to get the ball to our midfield and from there I want direct passes to our fast attackers.

To me, the direct passing no longer fits with your style (esp with WBiB now included) + why Counter? For me, again that doesn't fit.

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Apologies that this wont be as comprehensive as some of the posters in this thread, I'm not used to this!! I wanted to post an update, but will (try) and add screenshots when I get home.

I signed Lucas Romero and Pavel Savitsky as my permanent signing and brought Raul Neves in on loan to add some youth to my midfield.

I'm just about to come to the end of January and it's been good so far (actually the first save I've actually had a lot of enjoyment out of, anyway I digress).

We currently sit 3rd, level on points with 4th place Barca (with Real running away with the league and Atlectico 2nd). Have just had an 18 game unbeaten run ended by a shocking performance at home to Levante, where 2 set pieces caught us with our collective pants down. That made it 3 defeats so far this season, all of them in the league (previous 2 were to Real and Barca early on in the campaign).

We are into the Copa del Rey Semi's after deservedly beating Atletico 2-1 both home and away and topped our Europa League group with maximum points.

My base, which is slightly adapted dependant on the situation is:

Counter / Fluid

GK(s)

WB(s)

CB(d)

CB(d)

WB(s)

WM(A)

DLP(d)

CM(a)

B2B(s)

WM(a)

F9(s)

with TI's - shorter passing, work ball into box, play out of defence, low crosses, push higher up, close down more, prevent GK distribution

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To me, the direct passing no longer fits with your style (esp with WBiB now included) + why Counter? For me, again that doesn't fit.

You are def right about the direct passing. It has been removed since then. I wanted a direct game from mid to the attackers 'cause of their pace but I didn't really want overall direct passing.

The counter mentality was mainly since I was a bit concerned about my defense being too exposed so I went with a more conservative approach.

The following 2 games since that update has been 2 convincing wins.

Cheers!

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Would love to get involved if it's not too late! Hadn't noticed this thread before, but its a great idea.

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