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Cleon

The School Of Defensive Arts 2015

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Actually I am not adamant on a static striker. I am for the set up I used but that's not a hard and fast rule applied to everything. It was just for this very specific style that is all.

So should I have a static striker then? since I'm looking to replicate that style, but with a different shape. Or should I go for a role that drops deep and holds up the ball while waiting for support? Since the 4141 doesn't naturally have players in close support.

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So should I have a static striker then? since I'm looking to replicate that style, but with a different shape. Or should I go for a role that drops deep and holds up the ball while waiting for support? Since the 4141 doesn't naturally have players in close support.

You need to decide which type of striker will allow to play the type of football you are creating. You can't be replicating the style I take about in this thread as that relied on three strikers, so you must decide how you're going to adapt it. A striker who drops deep is good as is a striker who pushes the defensive line back. The important aspect is not the striker but the players around him and what they'll be doing. That decides which striker you need to use.

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Thanks cleon, I've gone for an incredibly simple tactic for now with no specialist roles or PIs, I'll slowly experiment with different specialist roles over time. Going back to basics has improved my form somewhat.

Defensive

Very fluid

Retain possession

Shorter passing

Much lower tempo

Work ball into box

Play out from defense

Pass into space

GK - GKd

RB - WBa

CB - CDd

CB- CDd

LB - WBs

DM - DMd

MR - WMs

MC - CMa

MC - CMs

ML - WMa

ST - DLFs

Support on the break has been much better, I'm thinking that changing to very fluid has been quite beneficial in conjunction with changing the striker to a support role.

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I am re-reading this lovely bit of work as I find myself tempted to shift away from the usual and into the 3-4-3 realms. (Or 3-4-1-2 really). Going to have to have another read later and some more thinking. I find myself analysing more now, because I've introduced my nephew to the game and he's been bugging me for tactical advice. >_> Not that I'm that much help though! XD

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I am re-reading this lovely bit of work as I find myself tempted to shift away from the usual and into the 3-4-3 realms. (Or 3-4-1-2 really). Going to have to have another read later and some more thinking. I find myself analysing more now, because I've introduced my nephew to the game and he's been bugging me for tactical advice. >_> Not that I'm that much help though! XD

Wow, bit of a revelation.

I had always assumed, probably from other threads that a lone striker system should always have a support striker, and always assumed that a defensive/counter formation needed to apply 'movement between the lines'. It is interesting that those two points aren't the case - But on reflection, most topics talking about lone striker systems and whatnot tend to be more aggressive than what this topic created, and more aggressive than tactics I've ever done (I've not played a proper Control onwards strategy since 2012, at least not in any serious saves...) Oh, the other thing, is the assistant usually highlighting the 'space' issue if I throw a lone striker on an attack duty.

The other thing that I thought was fascinating, was pushing up and being more aggressive against teams that play defensive - in fact, I do the opposite - I'm more aggressive against the more attacking teams. That probably explains why my matches against bigger, aggressive teams tend to end in high scoring wins - Something like 3 or 5-0 up within half an hour, and it also explains why against defensive teams, even though I constantly and consistently carve them open, I tend to have smaller, more reasonable scorelines, though their habit of sticking 11 men in the box might also be an issue!

However, I think this thread has highlighted something I was missing - because I set up my roles for movement (and akin to an offensive set up), when I switch to a more aggressive mentality I've basically exploited the 'perfect' combination per se, hence why the tactic becomes explosively good and demolishes the aggressive teams, more-so when they absolutely push forward and leave themselves exposed. So, now I have too much food for thought, not necessarily just about the 3-4-3 I was curious about creating, but about all my usual staple formations that I use, from the 4-5-1, to the 4-3-3's, now I think I need to go back and have a look at them with new light and see if I can polish them to be more in-line with the new information I've picked up.

Still, the more I learn, the more mistakes I make! I do wonder if I'll ever grasp this game fully at times! Alas! :thup: Going to bookmark this one for future re-reading for my FM16 save files I think.

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Hello Cleon,

Firstly thanks for a great post, Ie been experimenting with defensive formations for a while but never got it solid, so tried going 3 at the back and attacking. Now it seems I can do both :p

A couple of questions though, just for my own piece of mind. I want to try experimenting with a 5 across midfield, im keeping the DW and rpm, but wondered about your thoughts on haing a CM(d) compared to a dlp(d), from what im reading i think the cm(d) would be defensively a little better but wouldnt contribute as much with creating chances? Am I along the right lines? My plan was to add either cm(d) in the centre with an rpm and AP(a) to combat the lack of creativity from the cm(d).

My other option would be the opposite, keep a dlp(d) and add a cm(a) again hell be getting into the box, not providing as much creativaty (sp?) as an AP, but defensively more solid?

This is all for FM15, and I hope it makes sense to you :p

Thanks In advance

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I've been struggling in my first season in League 2 (4th season in-game) as King's Lynn. It's not a massive surprise because I am by far the weakest team in the league but I've managed to just about stay up. Now that the end of the season is approaching, I need to take a long hard look at my team and get something sorted in preparation for next season to ensure that I have a more successful year.

This season I've been trying to play an offensive 3-4-3 diamond & a 4-2-3-1. Neither have worked as I just don't have the strength at the back to be able to deal with any kind of attacking threat from the opposition. The amount of times I'm either being done by crosses or over the top balls is astounding. After reading through this thread I think that "defensive" football may be the way forward. As a manager I like to play an expansive, possession based style with intricate passing, but I'm not sure that my players are able to do this. Based on 1 game (so far!) defensive football gets me closer to that, and makes me more sturdy at the back.

For my new tactic, I'm lining up as follows:

GK(D)

CB(X)

CB©

CB(X)

DW(S)

CM(D)

CM(S)

DW(S)

AM(S)

SS(A)

DLF(S)

I was worried when I first put the tactic together on the tactics screen that the "front 3" of AM, SS and DLF would all be occupying the same space. That hasn't happened so far, however I have noticed that the 2 AM players and my CM players are turning themselves into a box midfield. I'm not sure whether that is a good thing or not yet, I think only time will tell. I'll also need to take my first few games with a pinch of salt because I don't have players that are particularly well suited to their roles yet (for example relatively poor full backs in an attacking sense in both of my DW slots).

From an analysis point of view I'm only really going to analyse the first half of my first game with this tactic (vs Carlisle) as they had a player sent off in the 43rd minute.

I went in at half time 1-0 up thanks to a penalty, which was won by my right DW bombing into the box and being taken down. Shots wise, however, I've not done very well. I have only managed 3 shots (1 on target) and have fashioned 1 clear cut chance.

From a possession point of view, I've had a whopping 67% possession and have completed 288/332 passes (86%) compared to their 125/176 (71%). I've also won 13/14 tackles and 17/24 headers (their stats are 14/23 and 13/25 respectively)

Looking at the stats, my DWs have not completed a single cross (10 attempted) however have 2 key passes (both from my right hand side). My DLF has only had 2 shots, one of those being the penalty, so I need to find out why he isn't getting chances. Judging by his heat map & average position, he's dropping deep and getting involved in play in the middle of the park (as you'd expect from a DLF(S)) and not really getting into the box at all. He is doing a very good job of holding the ball up though and I think that if he had better support (a more threatening SS for example) his lack of chances wouldn't be much of an issue.

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I think I may have spoken too soon. In my second game (vs mid-table Mansfield) I've been quite poor in all of the areas that matter.

The final score was 2-0. I had more possession than they did (59%) and more passes (472/606 to their 268/374) however that is where my domination ends. They had 23 shots (10 on target) to my 7/1. My wingers again failed to complete a cross (only attempting 3 in total this game). Shots wise, only 2 of mine were inside the area. Only 6 of their 23 shots were outside the box, with 1 of which resulting in a goal. Their other goal came from a cross that was quite deep in my half (pretty much half way between the half way line and my box).

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I think I may have spoken too soon. In my second game (vs mid-table Mansfield) I've been quite poor in all of the areas that matter.

The final score was 2-0. I had more possession than they did (59%) and more passes (472/606 to their 268/374) however that is where my domination ends. They had 23 shots (10 on target) to my 7/1. My wingers again failed to complete a cross (only attempting 3 in total this game). Shots wise, only 2 of mine were inside the area. Only 6 of their 23 shots were outside the box, with 1 of which resulting in a goal. Their other goal came from a cross that was quite deep in my half (pretty much half way between the half way line and my box).

Be patient- one result really can't tell you much. You did have an ugly match there, but it happens to the best of teams and best of tactics sometimes. Especially when you note that you have the weakest team in the league, you have to be realistic with what you expect. At the end of the day, in your position (I speak from continually being in your shoes with this) you have to take your lumps as you gradually improve your squad. A solid defensive tactic- it worked the first time you used it!- will enable you to grind out results and hang on. I had a weak club full of Conf. N/S players with a few Conference level guys in League Two and went on a 17 match winless streak at the start of the season. Ground out a few draws in there and gradually climbed up enough to barely survive. Hang in there!

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Dr Hook, why does it say your game is still in Beta?

It's the same as the current retail version, but I started the save as a tester and have kept it going- didn't feel like starting over after all the hours invested :D

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Just to show you- there a number of trashings in there :D

Schedule_%20%20Senior%20Fixtures_zps9ay44zzw.png

Looks pretty similar to the majority of last season for me! Pre season has started for me now and I'm not doing too badly, but I'm noticing in my games that I'm still struggling to create chances. I'm not giving many away, and I'm winning the possession battle in most games (as I type I've got 58% possession vs Premiership side Derby in a friendly) but the lack of chances created means I'm unlikely to actually win many games.

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Looks pretty similar to the majority of last season for me! Pre season has started for me now and I'm not doing too badly, but I'm noticing in my games that I'm still struggling to create chances. I'm not giving many away, and I'm winning the possession battle in most games (as I type I've got 58% possession vs Premiership side Derby in a friendly) but the lack of chances created means I'm unlikely to actually win many games.

Same issue I had- it was more important to me and it seems to you to be as solid as possible at the back first and foremost, and build from there. Hopefully you'll grind out enough to survive- in this season I managed survival on 38 points. At the bottom you can see I had a bit of corner turned that saved the day. In the close season I was able to upgrade a couple of positions and had a couple of young players develop enough over the season to be better next go around. Just don't lose heart and remind yourself that having a weak team and losing a pack doesn't necessarily mean your tactic is crap :)

As a side note, I saw you were playing a SS and I wonder how that was working for you. I've never been satisfied with it and have always gone back to a straight AM.

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Same issue I had- it was more important to me and it seems to you to be as solid as possible at the back first and foremost, and build from there. Hopefully you'll grind out enough to survive- in this season I managed survival on 38 points. At the bottom you can see I had a bit of corner turned that saved the day. In the close season I was able to upgrade a couple of positions and had a couple of young players develop enough over the season to be better next go around. Just don't lose heart and remind yourself that having a weak team and losing a pack doesn't necessarily mean your tactic is crap :)

As a side note, I saw you were playing a SS and I wonder how that was working for you. I've never been satisfied with it and have always gone back to a straight AM.

Thanks for the advice! Most of my saves over the past few games have been with Arsenal, so top end of the Premiership. Not used to this lower league stuff!

There's not a great deal I can say about the SS at the moment. Granted I'm only in pre season, but I haven't really got much out of the role yet. I went for it to try to give my attacking midfield slots a bit of variety, however I've not really had goals or assists from it so far. We'll have to see when we finally get to the start of the season. I've just signed a player that my coaches say is a leading player for most L2 sides. I'm hoping that he can slot in to the SS role however my coaches are suggesting that he's best as an AP so I may have to switch the role in order to get the most out of him.

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5 games in to the new season and I'm still not having much luck. The results I've had are:

0-3 vs Shrewsbury (conceded 3 goals in 9 minutes as my defenders forgot how to defend. First goal: Long cross in, defender headed it onto an attacker who scored. Second goal: through ball cut through my defence between where my LCB and LW would be. Third goal: Another cross) - Win wasn't deserved as I was beaten in pretty much all areas other than possession and passes.

0-0 (lots on pens) vs Barnsley (Unsurprisingly outclassed by League 1 opposition. Did well to take it to penalties but I didn't deserve anything from the game. Only had 1 shot on target)

1-1 vs Chesterfield (Very even game, led for 60 minutes before a long miss-hit cross hit the post, beating my goalkeeper and their striker tapped it in to equalise. Still got heavily beaten on shots)

2-3 vs Port Vale (The most even of all of my games so far in terms of shots, I actually had the most shots for once. Beaten by 3 crosses - they seem to be my weakness. 2nd goal was again a cross that bounced off one of my defenders.)

0-1 vs Exeter (Lost to a cross.)

I'm really not sure what else I should be doing. I'm thinking of taking off either "Work ball into box" or "Retain possession" to try to get more shots on the board, but my apparent weakness to crosses is really concerning me.

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Take work ball into box off as combined with retain, your are going to see a lot of passing looking for the right shot. You can also try adding in shoot on sight. For the crosses this is a bit tougher to solve, but you can try a couple things- setting your Fbs to defend if you are getting killed with a lot of them (or a defend duty on the side that is the problem) and you can also close down the crossers with the OI, and perhaps even set your Fbs to tight man mark the wingers to take away their space.

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The issue with crosses seems to be that my defenders (I'm playing 3 at the back) all clump up in the middle/on the side where the ball is, leaving a man free at the far post. Do I need to instruct my players to play wider in order to get them to hold their shape a little better?

I'll try setting my DWs to defend to see if this helps as well. Hopefully it's not going to make me even weaker offensively!

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The issue with crosses seems to be that my defenders (I'm playing 3 at the back) all clump up in the middle/on the side where the ball is, leaving a man free at the far post. Do I need to instruct my players to play wider in order to get them to hold their shape a little better?

I'll try setting my DWs to defend to see if this helps as well. Hopefully it's not going to make me even weaker offensively!

Play wider/narrower only affects your team while in possession, so it won't help you here. You can use your DWs to man mark the wide forward men- you'll still be be vulnerable to the overlaps, but any narrow formation will be to some extent, but you can do that without dialing them back to defend duty, though that might help.

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Cleon, I've been trying to implement the following tactic for the upcoming season. I'm currently in pre-season and the only major issue that I've noted so far is that the wing backs seem quite isolated whenever they're on the ball. I've changed the central midfielders to B2B in the hope that their roaming would bring them out to the flanks more often in order to support the wing backs. However, it hasn't really worked as well as I had anticipated. Would you have any suggestions for increased support?

Very structured

Defensive

Shorter passing, much lower tempo, play out of defence

GK: Goalkeeper defend

CBR: Central defender stopper

CBC: Central defender cover

CBL: Central defender stopper

WBR: Wing back support

DMC: Regista support

WBL: Wing back support

CMR: B2B support

CML: B2B support

STR: Complete forward support

STL: Poacher attack

Just to explain a few things, I decided to use this formation because I wanted 3 things specifically: I wanted my fullbacks or wing backs to play a prominent role in attack, I wanted a very technical and creative player deep in midfield (regista), I wanted a creative dribbler high up the pitch in a central or wide position (complete forward). I also wanted to maintain possession and be a serious threat on the break, so I needed a formation with the majority of my players in my own half. Thus I settled on the 352 with a DM and wing backs.

I went highly structured due to things you have said in your other "art" threads. The possession thread mentioned that highly structured creates space between your players which is important for ball retention, the counter thread mentions that the opposition need to space to play in, otherwise they won't overcommit, so structured or highly structured seemed a good fit. Finally, a disciplined approach is obviously needed for defensive football. Highly structured restricts creative freedom for the team as a whole, while also allowing me to give plenty of freedom to my regista and complete forward via their roles.

The team instructions were chosen to prioritise possession, nothing much to say there. I may add work ball into box, but the wing back's crossing has been somewhat effective so far.

Anyway, is this a decent setup? Would you suggest any changes? And how can I improve support for the wing backs?

Thanks

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It feels good when you out-FM FM.

e9077d9bb3f3fb2a721fe178d38a2603.png

Playing a 4-1-4-1 based off concepts in this thread. Scored from a set piece to win 1-0 over two legs. My local club in the 1/4 finals of the champs league! A great thread, thank you.

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Images of the original post are not loading, is there a way to fix that? I tried different browsers, and image reloader extension without success.

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10 minutes ago, Konfuchie said:

Images of the original post are not loading, is there a way to fix that? I tried different browsers, and image reloader extension without success.

I've seen a few people report this kind of thing, although I (and others) still see the images.

I'll raise it with the Forum Admin to check if anything is going on.  Which browsers have you tried and what's your operating system?

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1 hour ago, Konfuchie said:

Win 10 Opera (tried with and without turbo), Mozzila Firefox, and Edge.

When I click on the text and icon of the not-loaded image it takes me to http://i1.wp.com/sisportscentre.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/2.jpg and the browser says: Sorry, the parameters you provided were not valid

ok thanks.  The sisportscentre site is down which could be a reason, although I'm using win10 / Edge and can see images just fine.  Technology :rolleyes:.

I'll still pass this on to the forum Admin but if that site is down there may not be much that can be done.

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