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luka_

Struggling massively

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As the title say, I am having huge issuess on this game. And I don't understand why. I am playing with Gladbach, I would say an above average german side. For sure good enough to be in top7 which is the goal that the board will set for you.

But in my first season I finished 11th. And in my second seaon, I finished 8th.

My problem is lack of any kind of consistency with my teams performances. I have tried a lot of different formations and tactical variations over this two seasons and didn't find one that would give me a sustained period of positive results. Mostly I would go on 3W and 2D over five games ant then fall into abyss of like 3W in next 10 games. 

Away form has been absolutely shambolic. I dont know for sure but over two seasons I don't think I have even 10 away wins.

So, with that said, I want some help with my current formation which now in my 3rd season I want to play all the time. 

4-4-1-1 formation with standard mentality and flexibile team shape and no TI's. For keeping leads and tough away games defensive mentality with flexibile team shape and TI's(pass to space,clear to flanks).

GK - Yann Sommer - GK/def

DR - Sebastian Jung - FB/att

DC - Nico Elvedi - CD/def

DC - Francesco Acerbi - CD/def

DL - A.Figuerido - FB/sup

MR - Patrick Hermann - W/sup

MCR - Nuri Sahin - DLP/def

MCL - Christopher Kramer - MC/sup

ML - Christian Pulisic - WM/att

AMC - Martin Odegaard - Treq/att

ST - John Guidetti - CF/sup

 

So ,this is my team and roles. I would like my team to keep their shape defensively and close down only in my own half. With the ball to keep possesion and move forward and use Odegaard as my main player and Pulisic,Hermann and Guidetti to play around him and be my 3 attacking outlets.

Should I make Odegaard more like AP or AM,,support or attack?

The problem is, even though I have quality..and I did use this formation at the end of my 2nd season...for example I'm playing Hertha at home and I get absolutely smashed by them. I mean they are pummeling me and I don't know why..like their team is inferior in terms of quality so I have no idea why I have problems of at least playing even match.

My squad strength are very good passers and decision makers , weaknesses are poor strength and aggression.

Anyway, how does my system look, are there any obvios mistakes in how it is set up and what would you recommend I should try to get this team playing like they look they can considering the players I have in disposal? :)

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The roles and duties are OK.  It's nothing revolutionary and very much in keeping with all the old guides. I'd prefer not to have two playmaker roles in the middle as they'll probably both converge on the ball when you have possession, which may isolate the striker and make midfield a bit congested.

With a 4-4-1-1 you have plenty of options with regard to playing style, but I don't really get your front two. If Guidetti holds the ball up, who other than Odegaard is going beyond him? Is he even doing that? How do you expect the team to move and combine when attacking? 

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57 minutes ago, RTHerringbone said:

The roles and duties are OK.  It's nothing revolutionary and very much in keeping with all the old guides. I'd prefer not to have two playmaker roles in the middle as they'll probably both converge on the ball when you have possession, which may isolate the striker and make midfield a bit congested.

With a 4-4-1-1 you have plenty of options with regard to playing style, but I don't really get your front two. If Guidetti holds the ball up, who other than Odegaard is going beyond him? Is he even doing that? How do you expect the team to move and combine when attacking? 

Well, Pulisic should operate as inside forward just from ML starta,no?

Also Kramer did score a few from his position. I don't know. What would you suggest? That's why I'm posting. I am really out of ideas here. I played Odegaard as na AM/A too..didn't really see anything good come out of it. But let's say I have Pulisic,Odegaard and Guidetti as 3 main attacking players with Kramer and Hermann providing additional options. Is that not what the system is set up to do?

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1 hour ago, luka_ said:

Well, Pulisic should operate as inside forward just from ML starta,no?

Also Kramer did score a few from his position. I don't know. What would you suggest? That's why I'm posting. I am really out of ideas here. I played Odegaard as na AM/A too..didn't really see anything good come out of it. But let's say I have Pulisic,Odegaard and Guidetti as 3 main attacking players with Kramer and Hermann providing additional options. Is that not what the system is set up to do?

Well have you watched a Full Match? I'll spend preseason validating that each player is doing what I want,  but I don't get the sense that you know 100% what you want. If you read Jambo98's Leicester thread, that's a good example of someone with a clear idea of how they want to play. You need to have that clarity and then see if you can create that vision.

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Will check Leicester thread.

I'd like my team to keep the ball in offense,play from the back via Sahin to the attacking phase where Odegaard should be the main playmaker with Pulisic, Hermann and Guidetti as main threats and Kramer to join when he decides there is no risk of a counter. If the attack breaks down, there is Sahin to recycle possesion (this is a bit of a problem since on this ME everybody likes to shoot rather than recycle posseission). So patient style and waiting for cracks to open. In defense I want to keep shape so no high press game.

Alternatively, when facing strong opposition, I want to sit deep(therfore defensive mentality) and upon winning possession to exploit the space in the wide areas of the pitch(therfore clear ball to flanks and pass to space). I don't care to have possession in this types of games. Also to team to keep shape and have two banks of four at all times behind the ball when defending.

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I think Odegaard is a very good AP(a) or T(a). If you want him to contribute more defensively, you may need to switch him to an AP(s) and give your forward a more aggressive duty.

My favourite one-ST and one-AMC combinations are:

  • AP(s) with AF(a)
  • SS(a) with DLF(s)

But I really prefer having a third man in that area, I think one of your two central midfielders could be given licence to push forward. Either an RPM(s) or BBM(s) role.

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Ok, so I did make some changes to my original tactic during preseason and now it started to look much better.

I have added TI: short passing,play out of defence,work ball in box,close down more,prevent opp gk passing. This with control mentality and flexible team shape.

I had some changes in personel also, the roles now look like this:

GK - Yann Sommer - GK/def

DR - Sebastian Jung - FB/s

DC - Niklas Sule - CD/def

DC - Francesco Acerbi - CD/def

DL - Kolo - FB/att

MR - David Concha - W/att

MCR - Christopher Kramer - MC/sup

MCL - Nuri Sahin - DLP/d...PI:close down much less

ML - Christian Pulisic - WM/att..PI:cut inside,less crossing,sit narrow

AMC - Martin Odegaard - AM/att..PI:hold up ball,more risky passes

ST - Luis Vietto - F9/sup

 

Attacking football now looks very good. I have scored 18 goals in first three games of the season. (seven goals against some minnows in the cup though). But I like what I see. Only now I am a bit vulnerable on the counter because most of the time I will only have two CB0s and Sahin at the back when I loos the ball in the final 3rd. But for now, I am happy.

 

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Is it a lack of cover or the players who are covering aren't good at it?  The FB-S should stay deeper to cover that flank unless its a low risk situation so that just leaves the left side where your FB-A is.  I'd make sure my most mobile defender is on that side to cover the space.

If the FB-S is vacating his position too much then try a WB-D.  I used the WB-D + W-A combo and he will play safer than a FB-S.  He will still move up to support the winger but will rarely overlap him.  I sometimes tell him to sit narrower to help cover the middle.

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1 hour ago, luka_ said:

Ok, so I did make some changes to my original tactic during preseason and now it started to look much better.

I have added TI: short passing,play out of defence,work ball in box,close down more,prevent opp gk passing. This with control mentality and flexible team shape.

I had some changes in personel also, the roles now look like this:

GK - Yann Sommer - GK/def

DR - Sebastian Jung - FB/s

DC - Niklas Sule - CD/def

DC - Francesco Acerbi - CD/def

DL - Kolo - FB/att

MR - David Concha - W/att

MCR - Christopher Kramer - MC/sup

MCL - Nuri Sahin - DLP/d...PI:close down much less

ML - Christian Pulisic - WM/att..PI:cut inside,less crossing,sit narrow

AMC - Martin Odegaard - AM/att..PI:hold up ball,more risky passes

ST - Luis Vietto - F9/sup

 

Attacking football now looks very good. I have scored 18 goals in first three games of the season. (seven goals against some minnows in the cup though). But I like what I see. Only now I am a bit vulnerable on the counter because most of the time I will only have two CB0s and Sahin at the back when I loos the ball in the final 3rd. But for now, I am happy.

 

First of all, an attacking trio of Pulisic, Odegaard and Vietto is what dreams are made off.

As for your final paragraph, think you would be better of with a more mobile player than Sahin anchoring your midfield. He is fairly slow and not the most positionally aware midfielder around. Playing an attacking style, I always felt like I needed a strong, mobile anchor in my midfield.

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I will consider using a sweeper gk as your d-line is going to be quite high. Sommer is a pretty decent sweeper gk. In defence, I will consider using another 'sweeper' with a stopper and cover combination. In midfield, I will have the CM to hold his position just to give another body back in case of a counter.

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16 minutes ago, TheJanitor said:

First of all, an attacking trio of Pulisic, Odegaard and Vietto is what dreams are made off.

As for your final paragraph, think you would be better of with a more mobile player than Sahin anchoring your midfield. He is fairly slow and not the most positionally aware midfielder around. Playing an attacking style, I always felt like I needed a strong, mobile anchor in my midfield.

Yes, I know about Sahin. But for now I have him, Dahoud and Ajer who can play this and I play Sahin because of his superb passing skills. Dahoud is a bit better physically but not much bette rin that regard to play him before Sahin and Ajer is still only 20, and I want him to improve on his passing skills before I play him in first team. Maybe I shouls switch Kramer to Sahin's position..he's much stronger and defensivly solid but not such a great passer, but maybe it would be better..

So, I'm aware of the problem but for now I won't change Sahin. I will just play 4-1-4-1 against better teams like Bayern, BVB and Leverkusen. 

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1 hour ago, luka_ said:

Yes, I know about Sahin. But for now I have him, Dahoud and Ajer who can play this and I play Sahin because of his superb passing skills. Dahoud is a bit better physically but not much bette rin that regard to play him before Sahin and Ajer is still only 20, and I want him to improve on his passing skills before I play him in first team. Maybe I shouls switch Kramer to Sahin's position..he's much stronger and defensivly solid but not such a great passer, but maybe it would be better..

You could change the roles around; a centrale midfield (D) on the left and a deep-lying playmaker (S) on the right. They will both hold position and Sahin would play a bit futher ahead which will give him more influence in the final third as well. 

I feel like you need two holding midfielders as you have four attack duties, of which two in midfield (amc not counting) So on the counter, there will be times that your left back, wide-midfielder, winger and the attacking midfielder, all will be somewhere in front of or close to your opponents goal. This leaves the DLP as the only player left in front of defense to protect it. 

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45 minutes ago, jorgvandervloed said:

You could change the roles around; a centrale midfield (D) on the left and a deep-lying playmaker (S) on the right. They will both hold position and Sahin would play a bit futher ahead which will give him more influence in the final third as well. 

I feel like you need two holding midfielders as you have four attack duties, of which two in midfield (amc not counting) So on the counter, there will be times that your left back, wide-midfielder, winger and the attacking midfielder, all will be somewhere in front of or close to your opponents goal. This leaves the DLP as the only player left in front of defense to protect it. 

Yeah, I've tried that but felt that then most of my attacks go on the right because DLP uses more the right winger then Pulisic, so I switched it so that Pulisic gets more involved. Right winger is probably the weakest part of my team right now. He is ok, but nothing special. And I couldn't find a better player on the market to improve because I didn't qualify for europe and there just weren't any good right wingers on which I'd want to spend money. I will try to give PI:hold position to my MC.

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I've added the "hold position" PI to Kramer, removed att duty to support for my left back and removed "short passing" TI to mixed. Also, when away I play standard mentality with right winger on support.

The results have been very good, especially when I removed short passing to mixed, it seems it has removed the shackles from my players and now we play faster and we are much more dangerous.

Last night I've played all the way until winter break, and after 17 games, we're sitting in the 4th place, only two points from CL spot. I bought Marko Pjaca from Juventus, so we'll have another great attacking player on the right wing too. I am causciously optimistic going forward but CL qualification is not entirely out of the picture. :)

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Good to hear it has turned round. It's quite common to read that people gain attacking zip when removing a passing modifier. So often people apply all things like Retain Possession, Pass Shorter and Work Ball Into Box all at once, and then wonder why they lack penetration in the final third.

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