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FMWolf

(Trying to) Replicating Mourinho's Real Madrid Mortal Counter

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Hey there! After struggling a bit to really get into this year's FM, I finally decided to compromise myself with a long term project: selecting a style of play, picking up a team, set up vital mentals attributes and trying yo build a squad around it. The style of play I choose was Mou's electric counter attack style when mananing Real Madrid. The speed at which the team break was something amazing. Just watch this:

After seeing some videos and reading about it, I started to take some conclusions and notes of a few things that stood out for me:

- The formation used was a 4-2-3-1, with a deeper set up;

- Mourinho has never been known for pressing up high and this was no different. Real had a somewhat medium block of pressing;

- As pressing, highs amounts of possession have never been a trademark of Mou's teams and once again that was reflected in his Real's side. Obviously they had more of the ball sometimes as they played much weaker teams, but it wasn't a concern to keep a slow, patient shor passing style;

- As stated above, the pace at which the team break was WOW! And that's what I look to replicate the most;

As for the players:

- Marcelo had more licence to go forward; Arbeloa was more limited in his actions even though he would put a couple crosses from game to game;

- Xabi Alonso and Khedira are the two roles more difficult to interpret to me: I see them as double pivots, with Alonso being more responsible with recycling the possession (he was the player with most passes per game at the end of the season) and Khedira more as a destroyer. Their offensive movement is harder to judge as sometimes Alonso went further forward, others Khedira did; Between the two, they had the higher amount of passing pretty much in all games. Defensively they we're maybe the most important part of the system: Alonso perfect positioning allowed Marcelo and Ronaldo to venture forward more and alongside Khedira, they had the biggest tackling ratio of the team;

- Di Maria was a key man: he helped a lot defensively and was a great carrier of the ball, providing a lot of assistis; He's main concern was to provide witdh, even though he also cut inside at times (inevitable as he's left footed and put to play on the right side);

- Ozil was given some freedom (isn't him the last number 10 on earth after all?), but he still droped somewhat deep to help in the defensive phase; His vision and assists were to die from *.*

- Ronaldo was obviously a key player: Mourinho and him had  a bit of a beef because Mou always wants his wide players to drop back and help, and Ronaldo was not much into it. So, he was at times the more advanced player on the pitch, always providing a goal threat with his almost perfect movement from the left side of the pitch into the center forward position;

- Benzema/Higuain: they both worked a lot for the team, trying to provide a link between the attack and the rest of the players. They often droped deep or went wide to create space for Ronaldo to come into;

 

How did I tried to replicate this into FM?

(team is FC Sochaux-Montbé, 3rd season)

Sem Título.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mentality: Counter

Shape: Flexible

TI's: Be More Disciplined; Pass Into Space

PI's: WB-S: Stay Wider; Drible More;

        DLP-S: More Direct Passes; More Risky Passes

        CM-A: Shoot Less Often; Roam From Position; More Risky Passes; Move Into Channels;

        DLF-S: Move Into Channels;

This hasn't quite worked out. We're getting a mix of results sitting 6th in the France Ligue 1 at the beggining of January, with a lot of inconsistency and failing to recreate the style of play wanted in most matches. My biggest problem has been my inability to counter teams that press high against us when that should be our biggest weapon! I also have problems with teams who sit too deep: we don't create a lot chances and often it's either a corner, long range shoot or a deep cross that decides the game for either them or me. My biggest concern is to replicate that specific style of play so that's what I aim for (more so than to try to solve it's limitations). Any problem you can spot with the formation, roles, mentality or shape that it's just not making the "fastest counter in the world" work for me? All help is welcome, even discussion about the way I interpreted Real Madrid's style of play as that can maybe be where I'm getting all wrong!


 

Edited by FMWolf
I failed multiple times at making my line up appear as an image. Link will have to do for now!

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Sorry for the high amount of editings, but as I was reading through what I've written I noticed that it was a mess! Words we're missing, a lot of grammar errors (problably still are) and the presentation was a bit off. So I just took some time to re-arrange the text, add some information and put an image into it as it makes it easier for whoever's reading to understand what's going on better. Again any replies are welcome! I'll still continue to try and make a better analysis of my tactical problems so that I can provide better info :)

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I'm trying something a little like this at the moment. You need an attacking team mentality because you want lots of attacking runs and risky forward passes. Counter will make your team keep the ball if there's no obvious route of attack. 

I've been playing even hard away games with an attacking mentality, using defensive line, width and closing down settings to make sure I keep enough players back, don't leave space in behind and defend compactly. I haven't fully cracked the style of play yet - still far too many attacks coming to nothing thanks to overambitious passing - but it's getting there.

One thing I want to incorporate is a false press, to force the opposition to play the ball forwards even when they'd rather just keep it in their own half. I want my forwards to make them play it into midfield, then win the ball when there's a bit of space to break into. 

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Thanks for the reply! It's curious that you mention a mentality change as that is one of the things I'm most unsure of. I understand your point on counter being a bit too cautious, but I can't really associate Mourinho's style with the attacking mentality either. Way to many risks being taken and that's not really how I see his style of play. You wouldn't see players like Pepe, Ramos, Arbeloa, Khedira or even Marcelo making that many risky passes or direct through balls. Alonso, Ozil and Di Maria were the ones doing it the most. Attacking, for me of course, would be more Klopp suited. But you had me really thinking into it, and since I see Guardiola being replicated better with a defensive mentality and I think of Mou as someone who's a bit stuck between the two, maybe standard mentality is the right way to go? Even control with some TI's adjustments. I think the forward runs can be achieved through roles selection, that's why I've three attacking roles, to ensure there's someone running forward.

As for the false press, you kinda achieve that if you have an AMC and a support striker. If you put them both pressing more you'll see them going for the opposition defenders. The problem I felt with that was, as I've a pretty deep setup with two DM's, I was finding that the AI was winning most of those hoofed balls and have since stoped using it. Maybe moving the DM's into a MC position with defend duties would work?

 

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You could change team shape instead of mentality. A structured or highly structured team shape would make the defenders concentrate on defending being more risk averse while the attackers would be more attacking and risk taking, with the midfielders somewhere in between. 

Edit: Also pushing the team up into a high 4-2-3-1 (2xCM) should see you transition faster but you will need to watch the gap between your midfield and defence. In addition, you will be far less likely to trigger actual FM counter attacks (if that was one of your aims?).

Edited by _Daniel_

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Thanks for the reply! Yeah, team shape is something in the back of my mind to. Structured seems the way to go if I want to experiment with that, as it should allow for a nice split of the team when attacking. Pushing the team up I really didn't want to do it as I feel I wouldn't be replicating the system as it was (maybe I'm wrong here, but it's my interpretation of it). But, chaching the CM-A to an AM-S/A could help? It would mean we would have another player a bit more forward, and Ozil didn't droped that deep I guess. As for the FM counters, I guess that what I'm aiming for? I mean, is there any way to do a counter? (while keeping a deeper formation)

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So, 3rd season ended. Finished 8th, which wasn't bad, but not good either. We were fighting for a place into the european places but the inconsistency that I have with this tactic just made us loose way too many points at the end of the season. After a brief analysis of how the season went, a few things stood out for me:

- Inconsistency is a major concern; we couldn't win more than two games in row;

- The majority of our goals resembled the system of Mourinho: quick balls played to the front guys and then with 3/4 passes they would create a chance. My AML finished the season with 12 goals, my highest goal scorer (which is what I want, but 12 goals is not enough!);

- As said above, 12 goals for my highest scorer just gives another problem away: we are not scoring enough, like not even close! Madrid scored +100 goals per season during Mou's time there, we scored 44 which put us at the bottom five of the league worst records for goals scored. This is then reflected in players stats that just don't ressemble Real's players at the time: my AMC position barely got any assists (5 between the two players deployed there) when Ozil got something like +15; The same can be said to my MR; My striker got 9 goals, once again, very poor;

- Defensively we were ok. We didn't concede that many goals: 40 to be for precise, which saw us at the top six of the league best records. Real Madrid conceded something aorund 30 goals, so we're not that far away in that department; I couldn't really see a patern with the goals conceded tho: 8 goals conceded from corners is a bit too much; crosses was the other way opposition scored more against us, which I can't really understand why, but as I said, I don't think that this a bad defensive record, and I expect to concede some goals anyway;

- My WB-S was kinda of mixed bag of a result: I just felt he never went forward enough; Maybe changing his role to a CWB-S or even maybe WB-A could help? I'm just afraid this just gives the left flank for free to the opposition; The truth his Marcelo got a couple of assists and even a couple of goals: my left back didn't get any assist or goal;

- My two DM's worked +/-. My DLP was definitely the guy with more passes each game and that was nice to see; He didn't get any assist tho, and Xabi Alonso had a couple; As I said in the intro post, Alonso and Khedira had the most passes between them per game, and I really didn't see that happen; I'm considering moving them to the MC's strata and play them as DLP-D and CM-D. This should ensure my DLP covers the left side better (as Xabi perfectly did) and should give them a more active role when in possession of the ball;

- My "Ozil" didn't worked. But I don't quite know if it's a problem with the role picked, or the overall formation, shape + mentality that made him have such a minor impact; Still, I'm thinking about moving him into the AMC position and give him a Trequarista, Advanced Playmaker or just an Attacking Midfielder (with some PI's) role: that should be more fit to Ozil's role; They all have up's and down's:

  1. Trequarista: the lack of effort this role's naturally has when it comes to the defensive phase of the game is something i'm not keen on; it can also attract the ball a bit too much and deviate the atention  from my AML; otherwise, it should mimic Ozil's quite nicely;
  2. Advanced Playmaker: again I don't quite like that it would attract the ball a bit too much; it can have a lack of lateral movement, but that can be sorted with PI's; I'm afraid that and AP and a DLP combined would just see them play the ball too each other way too many times and could potentially hurt good counter opportunities;
  3. Attacking Midfielder: should be the one causing less problems when it comes to attract the ball; PI's would almost certainly be needed, but so far it seems the more correct one for me to use;

- My winger failed; I'll admit I didn't have the most fit player to the role, but still only 2 assists is very bad; Again role changes are being considered and WM-A is definitely an alternative I should be looking at;

- My Raumdeuter was again meh. Yeah, he finished the season being our highest goal scorer but I want/need more. As my Ozil's role interpretation, I'm not quite sure if the source of the problem is his role or the overall team setup. The alternative here tho is only one and that would be making him an IF-A: I haven't tried it yet but I should and see how it works;

- As for my forward I'm again uncertain on what role I should be chosing: DLF-A? CF-S? Keep him as a DLF-S? The only thing I know is that I need him to link with the rest of the team and to have lateral movement in order to create space for my AML;

After reading some more about Mou's Real, I'm start to think that they weren't deployed that deep: they were Real Madrid after all! :D So, a 4-4-1-1 could mimic it better? (keeping the AML) Give my MC's a double defend duty to ensure they are in position to defend well?

About mentality: as I said, it was something I was looking to change. I'm starting to be inclined to use Control as that should ensure enough risk and speed to our game, while still not going berserk as it would with an attacking mentality. The pressing and the defensive line would have to be something to be aware of as I don't wan't have a high pressing game.

About shape: still a bit lost here; I think for now the best is to keep a flexible shape; I'm afraid going structered gives away compacteness with the 4-4-1-1 and fluid just makes all palyers be more ofensive minded and that's something I don't really think Mourinho likes: he has players responsilble for each phase of the game.

So, I'm still grinding and trying to make things work. As always, any suggestion, advice or critic is welcome!

   

 

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If you deploy the two CMs as defend I wouldn't worry to much about compactness. The other benefit of moving to structured is the players will have a bit more space to work in. 

Have a read of Ozil's Wales tactic thread where he uses structured. 

For me a raumdeter works better in a possession tactic where players are moving around a lot. For direct tactics I prefer wingers and inside forwards or even an attacking Wide Midfielder. In my current save my WMA has 8 assists and 10 goals in 20 matches (no PIs). 

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Yeah, the two CM's set to defend seems to me like the best way to replicate the system. I've read Ozil's thread but the type of football wanted is a bit different: Wales were definitely a more defensive oriented side than Real Madrid. Still, I can see your point on going structured and it's something that I will try in the next few games

As for the raumdeter, it isn't really working for me and maybe because of the points you shared: way too much movement when the only movement I want from him is to cut inside and be a constant threat in and around the box. The only reason why I don't feel like using the WM-A is because I can't really see Ronaldo as one, He never tracked that deep defensively and while that could help the system and give it a bit more balance overall, I feel like I would be going to a different path than the one used by Mourinho

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Well, I'll admit: I've failed. Not once, but way too many times. I keep having to load the game because I always get sacked eventually. And it's not just the bad results that get me mad, the lack of replication of what I want leaves me much more depressed. It's like in my head everything is where it needs to be and then it's a such a mess in the ME! So, so bad. I mean, look at this (currently on my 6th re-load of the game):

 

Sem Título.jpg

 

And no matter the little tweaks I do each time I start over, the result is eventually always the same. The tactic at use this time was this:

 

fas.jpg

Which should, at least to me, replicate Mourinho's tactic pretty well! I mean, Marcelo as an CWB? Yeah, he was. Alonso as a DLP? Yeah, he was. Khedira as a BWM? Yeah, he was. Di Maria winger? Ronaldo inside forward? Ozil attacking midfielder? Benzema/Higuain complete forwards? Yeah!! I mean, how else would you interpret it? And yeah, it could fail in some macthes, but always?

On a less ranty note, some analysis I can make of this tactic and what the problems seem to be:

- We can't counter. Even simple counters we tend fail miserably;

- We concede way to many +25 yards goals (which it's just unreal);

- Players seem to be doing the wrongs choices at the wrong times: my AML takes forever to go forward when we get the ball deep and get ready for a counter. He keeps himself too wide at times; he doens't score, at all!;

- My forward gets isolated, I can't really understand how: he has an AMC-A behind and an IF-A on the left. Still, when we get the ball quickly to him, those players don't run in support to him (like they should be doing!);

- My winger, who has 17 acc and 15 pace has a lot trouble going past his markers; most of the times he doesn't even attempt to do it and just puts crosses from deep;

- My midfield duo are the closest thing so far to the real system. They hold there position well when we go for an attack and seem to do a good cover for the more advanced players; still, there seems to be a  little bug where they stay on top of each other when we're defending (it has had a bit of an impact here and there, but it's not something major, just stupid to watch at times);

- My LB doens't go forward enough. He seems to suffer from the same problem of my AML. They take way too long to advance forward when we win the ball back. They eventually do, but almost always when the chance for a counter is gone;

- We get congested when we have the ball around the oppositon box: my winger, who should provide width, comes way too much inside; lack of movement between striker and inside forward; Most of the times we either get a long shot or we just loose the ball;

- For my AMC, 0 assists tell his story. The role doens't seem to work and I really can't tell you why;

So, I guess this it it for a while. It's hard to keep going at it (as you imagine). Plus, and albeit I got some replies (which were truly appreciated), the lack of general interest in the thread just really makes me wanna quit for now

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Just come across this, it's a shame you're quitting. It has been quite quiet on the forums of late, so I wouldn't put it down to a lack of interest just yet.

My take on your current system;

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- We can't counter. Even simple counters we tend fail miserably;

I don't think the Control mentality invokes the "Counter" setting in the match-engine. Essentially, this maxes out your team's mentality in transition; your players with move forward quicker, spread out wider and play more aggressive passes. The Defensive, Counter, Attacking and Overload mentalities have this. I'd start with Counter and build from there.

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- We concede way to many +25 yards goals (which it's just unreal);

How are you conceding them? Are your midfielders/not picking up the shooters? Is your back-line too deep? You have a "Sit Deeper" action on there which could be pushing your defenders back, giving shooters the time and space to shoot?

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- Players seem to be doing the wrongs choices at the wrong times: my AML takes forever to go forward when we get the ball deep and get ready for a counter. He keeps himself too wide at times; he doens't score, at all!;

Have you played with his position? I'd be tempted to try FW(L) or possibly a Shadow Striker/Treq (to the left of your AMC), to see what movements he makes.

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- My forward gets isolated, I can't really understand how: he has an AMC-A behind and an IF-A on the left. Still, when we get the ball quickly to him, those players don't run in support to him (like they should be doing!);

Try playing with the fluidity settings? You're currently using structured, which could be separating your players from each other. 

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- My winger, who has 17 acc and 15 pace has a lot trouble going past his markers; most of the times he doesn't even attempt to do it and just puts crosses from deep;

Try dropping him back to the midfield strata. He'll get more space to receive the ball, and build momentum up to beat his man? If he's in the AM strata, it could be that he's sat on top of his marker?

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- My midfield duo are the closest thing so far to the real system. They hold there position well when we go for an attack and seem to do a good cover for the more advanced players; still, there seems to be a  little bug where they stay on top of each other when we're defending (it has had a bit of an impact here and there, but it's not something major, just stupid to watch at times);

Two midfielders with defensive mentalities seems very conservative to me. I'd try a DLP(S) with a CM(D). You want your playmaker to be less conservative, and changing your BWM will mean he won't go hunting for the ball as much. The mentality and role change should fix their positioning issues.

33 minutes ago, FMWolf said:

- We get congested when we have the ball around the oppositon box: my winger, who should provide width, comes way too much inside; lack of movement between striker and inside forward; Most of the times we either get a long shot or we just loose the ball;

Possibly linked to what I said earlier on your winger's position - is it that he's that high up, he has nowhere else to go, but towards the box?

Edited by Spiegel

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Thanks for the reply! I finally had the time to read through it and here's what I think:

10 hours ago, Spiegel said:

I don't think the Control mentality invokes the "Counter" setting in the match-engine. Essentially, this maxes out your team's mentality in transition; your players with move forward quicker, spread out wider and play more aggressive passes. The Defensive, Counter, Attacking and Overload mentalities have this. I'd start with Counter and build from there.

I wasn't aware of this. I've chosen control so we would play with some kinda of direct, fast paced football on the front while not being over the top as it would be with an attacking mentality. Will definitely change this and see how it goes;

 

10 hours ago, Spiegel said:

How are you conceding them? Are your midfielders/not picking up the shooters? Is your back-line too deep? You have a "Sit Deeper" action on there which could be pushing your defenders back, giving shooters the time and space to shoot?

Yeah, my defensive line is deepish but not very deep as we still played on a control mentality. To be honest, leaving the opposition to have only long shots in the game is something that I find positive: the problem is they were scoring them xD The problem with my MC's getting on top of each other has some impact here as sometimes this behaviour leaves one of the opposition midfielders unmarked;

 

10 hours ago, Spiegel said:

Have you played with his position? I'd be tempted to try FW(L) or possibly a Shadow Striker/Treq (to the left of your AMC), to see what movements he makes.

Not really. While I can see your points there, I don't really see Ronaldo (at that time) playing anywhere else than on the left flank. And the movement I want to create is from left to center and not the opposite. Still, I find it problematic to get him to go forward quickly and to enter the box. I'll try to find some screenshots of what I'm trying to say here, but I feel like he doens't do many (if any) penetrative runs behind my striker;

 

11 hours ago, Spiegel said:

Try playing with the fluidity settings? You're currently using structured, which could be separating your players from each other. 

But wouldn't structured allow my players with an attack mentality to be more focused on attacking? Making them more concerned with running forward rather than pulling them apart? But, since I'm changing mentality, I feel more secure playing with a more fluid setting, and I'll give it a go;

 

11 hours ago, Spiegel said:

Try dropping him back to the midfield strata. He'll get more space to receive the ball, and build momentum up to beat his man? If he's in the AM strata, it could be that he's sat on top of his marker?

Yeah, this is probably it. Maybe even change him to WM-A so he's a bit more versatile, replicating Di Maria better?

 

11 hours ago, Spiegel said:

Two midfielders with defensive mentalities seems very conservative to me. I'd try a DLP(S) with a CM(D). You want your playmaker to be less conservative, and changing your BWM will mean he won't go hunting for the ball as much. The mentality and role change should fix their positioning issues.

Here I agree with you that it would give the midfield a better balance, but again, I feel that in order to replicate the system wanted, this is the better setup: Khedira's job was to win the ball back quickly and lay it off to one of the more creative players around him; Alonso dictated play but still offered a great amount of cover to the left side of team, where Marcelo and Ronaldo would sometimes lack in there defensive positionament. I'm afraind setting a DLP-S leaves us too exposed on that left flank and a CM-D doesn't show enough aggression when trying to win the ball back. For now, I'll toy with the BWM-D and make him a CM-D to see the effect;

 

11 hours ago, Spiegel said:

Possibly linked to what I said earlier on your winger's position - is it that he's that high up, he has nowhere else to go, but towards the box?

Can maybe be it, but I still think that it's just the way the ME handles the wingers positioning when on the final third: they comes more narrow to try and be more of a treat of goal (again, I'll try to find some screenshots that illustrate this). What I wanted from him tho was that, off the ball, he would get away from the box and onto to the byline to creat space. He only seems to do this when he has the ball or when we've the ball deeply. Im changing him to MR strata and see how it goes;

 

Any ideas on why my AML is lacking in forward runs? Maybe the role? Is IF-A more of an Hazard type of player and would Ronaldo be more of a Raumdeuter?

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What PPM's does your AML player have as they will affect things a lot. If I use an IF(a) with the PPM's beats offside trap and/or moves into channels I find they get a lot of goals/chances coming in from the wing. This goes for all positions, ie playing someone as a CWB that has the PPM stays back at all times would be counter productive as the PPM overrides the role you've given him (I believe).

Is he quick with good movement and anticipation? If he isn't good at those things it will be tough to get him scoring regularly

 

Edited by LATB

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I had time to play a match and get a few screenshots from it. My AML was playing as a Raumdeuter this match. His PPM's are Moves Into Channels and Cuts Inside From Both Wings. I have him currently learning Gets Forward Whenever Possible (which he has been doing for almost a year now  :thdn:):

 

ifbad.jpg

This was at the start of the match. My striker dropped deeper to collect the ball and roll it out to my AMC. The movement of my striker has dragged a few players with him, leaving a lot of space (circled in red) between  their CB and FB. This is the area I expect my AML to move into. My desired movement is represented by the blue arrow, what he actually did is represented by the black arrow, As you can see, in this situation, he just runned outwards, making it very difficult for my AMC to get him with a pass. He still did but my AML was way to wide to really be of any concern for the opposition. Also, notice the space my LB has in front him, space that he's not making any use of.

 

ifbad2.jpg

Another similar play. Striker dropped deep, gives the ball to AMC who runs past his marker. The space between opposition CD and FB is again there but my AML opts yet again to don't make that run. My AMC still found him with a pass and he then was the one moving into that space which led to a goal. Still, the desired movement was once again not there. My LB a bit to deep again.

 

ifbad3.jpg

Here the ball is played to my AMC who is unmarked, making their CD move forward towards him. This once again opens up space for my AML to run into. In this case he opted to drop back to give my AMC an easier pass option. While I can somewhat understand his decision, easier pass routes are provided from my MC's: that's their job. From my AML I expect more risk and more forward runs, always trying to be a threat on goal and not so much a "recycler" of possession. Notice aswell the position of my LB. Even my RB, who's deployed as a FB-S, is more advanced than him (no PPM's for both players), making them be in a reversed situation of what I want,

 

ifbad4.jpg

Here, my striker comes deep to get the ball and it all fails again. My AML, who should be looking to run past him and get himself in that red circled area, took forever to do it and when he finally did, we ended up in this situation: my two players are way to close to each other in order to create any real danger. The striker did the pass anyways and my AML, who was just to deep to be of any danger himself, rolled it out to AMC (nº 24) who had a good chance to score. The overall movement was ok, but my AML is the one I want taking chances, not the one creating them. LB again deeper than my RB: still can't understand why!

 

ifbad5.png

This is almost at the end of the game, we were winning 2-0 and possession was being kept. The movement of my striker yet again opened up space at their back and as the ball reaches my MC, had my striker moved into that space, he could put a pass into him, creating a good scoring chance for us. Unfortunately this wasn't meant to be the case and the game ended 2 min laters.

 

I also screenshoted a brief sequence that highlights what went on vs what I expect:

seq1.jpg

1. The ball is won by my AMC and passed to my striker. From the moment this pass is made, I expect my AML to instantly run forward like a mad men. He took his time to do it tho;

 

seq2.jpg

2. Striker receives the ball. My AML now starts running forward. By now, I would expect him to be somewhere around that red circled area;

 

seq3.jpg

3. Striker dominates the ball, turns and moves into the left. Again, my AML is still way too deep. He should definitely be in the marked area if we want to create some danger. I mean, look at the space their RB has recovered to my AML!

 

seq4.jpg

4. This is the exact moment my AML receives the ball from my striker. As you can see, any opportunity he had to run free on goal is now gone. Had he been where the red cirlce is, the story could have been different. He just ran with the ball and eventually took a long shot ending the sequence.

 

I hope I could translate my problems better this way. Again, any advices, suggestions or critics are welcome!

Edited by FMWolf

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I like your opening post and want to get back to that with some feedback. Perhaps you are through with some already (and others have pointed out things).

First of all I think we need to discuss improvements separatly for scenarios when opponents come at you and when they sit back.

 

When they come at you:

Overall looks quite good.

My experience is a structured shape will provide great improvement to a 4231 deep, especially the defensive box, when they press and when they hold.

More tricky is if your three attacking midfielders are linking up correctly. What do you see happen when you win the ball (e.g. your anchor)? I would not be surprised if the winger is far wide and high. What if the DLP is marked? Had a similar situation myseld and changed W to a WMs with dribble more. Much more available for a quick pass! 

 

When they sit back:

More obvious issues TBH. First of all a catious mentality, catious back four and static central midfield. Definetly spice this up! You can still drop deeper to keep the mourinho flavour.

I would also be interested in the MCa. You ask alot from him, does he have the attributes?

Best regards

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Thanks for the reply! Some really good advice there:

3 hours ago, Wayne Flemming said:

More tricky is if your three attacking midfielders are linking up correctly.

They aren't because my AML doesn't move correctly;

 

3 hours ago, Wayne Flemming said:

Had a similar situation myseld and changed W to a WMs with dribble more

Yeah is something I've tried in some matches. It didn't make an huge improvement tbh;

 

3 hours ago, Wayne Flemming said:

More obvious issues TBH. First of all a catious mentality, catious back four and static central midfield. Definetly spice this up! You can still drop deeper to keep the mourinho flavour.

Yeah, you're right. I have to pay more attention on how does the opposition play and adapt in certain situations;

 

3 hours ago, Wayne Flemming said:

I would also be interested in the MCa. You ask alot from him, does he have the attributes?

My current two MC/AMC'S are Ante Coric and Francisco Geraldes, both very capable players

Edited by FMWolf

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Could someone just have a look at the movement of their AML when on an IF or Raumdeuter role and see if they spot this kinda of behaviour too? Right now, it seems like a "bug" or something that none of those roles are supposed to do ME wise, making it impossible to me to replicate the tactic wanted :(

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Forgive me, I may sound harsh here but, for me I see too many of these...I want to create a (Insert Manager) style tactic with (Insert team).

Let's get things into perspective, you want to play like Mourinho's counter attacking Real Madrid side from a few year back, fair enough.....The main problem is you have chosen a team who's players are quite frankly distinctively average at best in Ligue 1.

You may have the correct philosophy, tactical set up but without the players to play these roles you will never succeed. Mourinho had world class players at his disposal, technically and tactically.

IMO this is where a lot of players of this game become undone and fundamentally undervalue the role 'attributes' play in the game nowadays. You need the right players to play the right roles.

Just my two pennies worth, if people played to the chosen teams strengths at the beginning with the ideology of bringing people in over a few seasons who are capable of playing the roles and tactic you desire with the correct attributes you and so many others would see massive rewards.

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Forgive me, I may sound harsh here but, for me I see too many of these...I want to create a (Insert Manager) style tactic with (Insert team).

Let's get things into perspective, you want to play like Mourinho's counter attacking Real Madrid side from a few year back, fair enough.....The main problem is you have chosen a team who's players are quite frankly distinctively average at best in Ligue 1.

You may have the correct philosophy, tactical set up but without the players to play these roles you will never succeed. Mourinho had world class players at his disposal, technically and tactically.

IMO this is where a lot of players of this game become undone and fundamentally undervalue the role 'attributes' play in the game nowadays. You need the right players to play the right roles.

Just my two pennies worth, if people played to the chosen teams strengths at the beginning with the ideology of bringing people in over a few seasons who are capable of playing the roles and tactic you desire with the correct attributes you and so many others would see massive rewards.

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Hey there! I didn't take your comment badly, not all. I understand what you're saying. But remember that this is in my 4th season, so I had time to bring in some quality players over the years with attributes that while not the same as Ozil, Ronaldo, Benzem, etc, are good for this kinda of tactic to work, at least decently. I don't expect my AML to score 50+ goals a season or my two forwards to have 20+ goals each,  almost 20 assists from my AMC etc, etc... But I expect to see a similiar way of playing and get some stastitics that reflect that: my AML being my highest goal scorer, my AMC my player with most assists and so on. I don't think this is unreal at all tbh. And, from other threads on here, like p.e Cleon's thread on the Arsenal Invencibles, you can make a tactic work with less quality players that those used in real life. You'll never get to replicate the exact way they play because of the limitations of the tactic creator, but you can get something close to it. And that's what I'm looking for and it's not happening. So, obviously, I'm not getting shape or mentality right, maybe even the roles picken aren't the most correct ones. Again, this thread was open to discussion on how you could reproduce that spefic style of play, but I guess it has never been never taken that way unfortunately and I just continue a bit lost on how to do it. The lack of feedback as also been demotivating, but hey, people have more to do and I totally understand that :)

Edited by FMWolf

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Looked at your screenshots now in more detail, and share your frustation. Especially that last sequence is.. well, crazy! (I assume its the control structured setup).

@LATB asked about the player, do you have a SS of his attributes?

Im no FM expert but I have often seen the wide movement of inside forwards. Seems to me that the "inside movement" only relates to when he has the ball. Its almost like he stays wide until he is on the ball, so that he can have some space to accelerate and run with the ball. See what I mean? Someone else recommended a shadow striker on the left AM. Maybe try that? 

Interesting to see how you develop this further!

 

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Hey! Yeah, I was screaming at the screen "Run Forrest! RUN!" but he didn't want to do it :lol: I'll post a screenshot of both of the players I use there when I can.

About the IF's, that's what I suspected. It would be awesome if one of the experts could confirm that, as it is what I'm seeing everytime I use the IF role. Still, I expected the Raumdeuter to function in a different way and that hasn't been the case so far. I've tried the left forward position but it really doesn't do it aswell. Left AM is really the only alternative I haven't tried yet. As I said before, I'm just afraid the movement made by them is from center to left instead of left to center, but I can only see this if I actually try it, so I'll do it and give some feedback when I can

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First of all i just want to say that kudos to you for undertaking this project because it is not as easy to emulate on FM. A few things to take note of which i guess a few other people have already written before me but i will say a bit more.

Ronaldo is a very unique footballer and unless you have someone like him with his PPMs like on FM, it would be very diffiuclt to create someone like him. Having said that it is of course not impossible to create the type of movement and playing style associated with him on FM. 

I have tried before to create the Ronaldo role on Fm and the closest i have found was with the CF(complete forward) attack role assigned to mark the fullback or wingback(if none of these then winger or wide player) that is on the same flank as him. What you would see is the outside to inside movement that you desire and it really gives me an overall satisfaction in how the modified role plays out. The modified CF will cut inside like an inside forward (if odd-footed) but without the single-mindedness of cutting inside all the time. During the defensive phase, he will go out wide to mark the wide back or winger making him look like an inside forward but once on the attack, he will come central to attack. 

Another option you can try is with a modified WM attack role. Giving it cut inside, sit narrower, cross less often and/or dribble more so give you a player who will come into the hole between the opponent's defence and midfield and looking to attack the box from there. Granted yes, ronaldo does not drop that far back like what you mentioned but to fully emulate the role while ensuring your overall tactic does not get whacked by other teams is a hard balance to find. With the right player with the right atrributes, even the modified Wm attack role can bring out a similar goalscoring flavour.

The thing with FM is that it is not as simple as having a player further up the field and then he is guaranteed to score loads of goals. Being too far forward might get you isolated with the defenders who will have no problems marking you out. 

Hope this helps.

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The OP is good @FMWolf, I've been using this for my research on the evolution of Mourinho's tactics. I agree with the player roles and duties you have given except the Ozil role. Though at times he was asked to back track like a AM (S), he still had the creativity of a Trequartista. However that role doesn't have the option "close down more", so perhaps improving the "work rate" of the player you want to use in that role may work.

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My interpretation of Mourinho's philosophy would be that he is the arch pragmatist and will always focus on preserving the clean sheet. With that Real Madrid side you have to factor in that Ronaldo was at his peak, and playing in a way that would transcend many a footballing system. Real essentially starting at least a goal up every game they went into. 

Have just finished a season in which I had completed my vision in which I started. I had developed a potentially Ronaldo level talent into a beast of a player that would very often allow me to effectively start those game 1-0 up.   

I've been managing Bilbao, and after a few frustrating seasons trying to reach the summit of La Liga and compete against Barca and Real I decided to change gear from a back 3 system, to a fundamental Mourinho 4231. The crop of players I'd previously been using had really come to the end of it's cycle, and a change was needed. My strengths at that stage we're at the back, weaknesses in midfield with a slow and ageing midfield , and a very young but potentially world's best forward up front with a pacy Inaki Williams.

So I focused on a defensive first philosophy, valuing a clean sheet as gold dust. Real and Barca we're formidable, so I knew any chance of pipping them to a title had to come from losing fewer games than them. Unfortunately, such pragmatism cost me through more than a few 0-0 draws. 

That being said, in the 24/25 season my forward players that I had been developing for many seasons suddenly all hit their peaks and we're capable of blowing teams away.    

Season 21/22; won 26, drawn 11, lost 1 - 63 goals, 15 conceded, 26 c/sheets - 89 points - 3rd place
Season 22/23; won 29, drawn 8, lost 2 - 76 goals, 20 concededed, 20 c/s - 92 points - 2nd place
Season 23/24; won 26, drawn 10, lost 2, 67 goals, 17 conceded, 25 c/s - 88 points - 3rd place
Season 24/25; won 31, drawn 7, lost 0, 101 goals, 15 conceded, 27 c/s - 100 points - 1st place

- reaching 62 games unbeaten across 2 seasons. 

Counter - Very Fluid 

Much Higher Tempo, More Disciplined, Tight Marking, Play Out of Defence 


			SKa
FBs		BPDc	BPDd	FBs			*sometimes change to full backs to WBd after taking enough of a lead if needed.
		BMWd	DLPs				*change DLP to DLPd after reaching comfortable position in game
	IFs		AMs		IFs				
			AFa

 

My interest in that save has somewhat peaked, but I'm very eager to see if I can take on that Mourinho style pragmatism onto a different club and achieve the same results. So have started up a save with PSG, and will implement that value of a clean sheet, with the demand for fast tempo football and pace at the top end of the pitch. 

 

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13 hours ago, BrianMunich said:

My interpretation of Mourinho's philosophy would be that he is the arch pragmatist and will always focus on preserving the clean sheet. With that Real Madrid side you have to factor in that Ronaldo was at his peak, and playing in a way that would transcend many a footballing system. Real essentially starting at least a goal up every game they went into. 

Have just finished a season in which I had completed my vision in which I started. I had developed a potentially Ronaldo level talent into a beast of a player that would very often allow me to effectively start those game 1-0 up.   

I've been managing Bilbao, and after a few frustrating seasons trying to reach the summit of La Liga and compete against Barca and Real I decided to change gear from a back 3 system, to a fundamental Mourinho 4231. The crop of players I'd previously been using had really come to the end of it's cycle, and a change was needed. My strengths at that stage we're at the back, weaknesses in midfield with a slow and ageing midfield , and a very young but potentially world's best forward up front with a pacy Inaki Williams.

So I focused on a defensive first philosophy, valuing a clean sheet as gold dust. Real and Barca we're formidable, so I knew any chance of pipping them to a title had to come from losing fewer games than them. Unfortunately, such pragmatism cost me through more than a few 0-0 draws. 

That being said, in the 24/25 season my forward players that I had been developing for many seasons suddenly all hit their peaks and we're capable of blowing teams away.    


Season 21/22; won 26, drawn 11, lost 1 - 63 goals, 15 conceded, 26 c/sheets - 89 points - 3rd place
Season 22/23; won 29, drawn 8, lost 2 - 76 goals, 20 concededed, 20 c/s - 92 points - 2nd place
Season 23/24; won 26, drawn 10, lost 2, 67 goals, 17 conceded, 25 c/s - 88 points - 3rd place
Season 24/25; won 31, drawn 7, lost 0, 101 goals, 15 conceded, 27 c/s - 100 points - 1st place

- reaching 62 games unbeaten across 2 seasons. 

Counter - Very Fluid 

Much Higher Tempo, More Disciplined, Tight Marking, Play Out of Defence 


			SKa
FBs		BPDc	BPDd	FBs			*sometimes change to full backs to WBd after taking enough of a lead if needed.
		BMWd	DLPs				*change DLP to DLPd after reaching comfortable position in game
	IFs		AMs		IFs				
			AFa

 

My interest in that save has somewhat peaked, but I'm very eager to see if I can take on that Mourinho style pragmatism onto a different club and achieve the same results. So have started up a save with PSG, and will implement that value of a clean sheet, with the demand for fast tempo football and pace at the top end of the pitch. 

 

I'd disagree about the team shape, Mourinho uses Structured, definitely not Very Fluid. At the very most flexible.

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5 hours ago, goqs06 said:

I'd disagree about the team shape, Mourinho uses Structured, definitely not Very Fluid. At the very most flexible.

Can use what ever shape, or click whatever button you like.. 

Helps me achieve the overarching Mourinho philosophy of the team being unite and able to work collectively to achieve their cause. 

The players themselves will define how the system plays ultimately. The OP trying to replicate Mourinho's Real Madrid side without having similar quality of players is a little fanciful and naive.

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On 2/19/2018 at 04:49, BrianMunich said:

My interpretation of Mourinho's philosophy would be that he is the arch pragmatist and will always focus on preserving the clean sheet. With that Real Madrid side you have to factor in that Ronaldo was at his peak, and playing in a way that would transcend many a footballing system. Real essentially starting at least a goal up every game they went into. 

Have just finished a season in which I had completed my vision in which I started. I had developed a potentially Ronaldo level talent into a beast of a player that would very often allow me to effectively start those game 1-0 up.   

I've been managing Bilbao, and after a few frustrating seasons trying to reach the summit of La Liga and compete against Barca and Real I decided to change gear from a back 3 system, to a fundamental Mourinho 4231. The crop of players I'd previously been using had really come to the end of it's cycle, and a change was needed. My strengths at that stage we're at the back, weaknesses in midfield with a slow and ageing midfield , and a very young but potentially world's best forward up front with a pacy Inaki Williams.

So I focused on a defensive first philosophy, valuing a clean sheet as gold dust. Real and Barca we're formidable, so I knew any chance of pipping them to a title had to come from losing fewer games than them. Unfortunately, such pragmatism cost me through more than a few 0-0 draws. 

That being said, in the 24/25 season my forward players that I had been developing for many seasons suddenly all hit their peaks and we're capable of blowing teams away.    


Season 21/22; won 26, drawn 11, lost 1 - 63 goals, 15 conceded, 26 c/sheets - 89 points - 3rd place
Season 22/23; won 29, drawn 8, lost 2 - 76 goals, 20 concededed, 20 c/s - 92 points - 2nd place
Season 23/24; won 26, drawn 10, lost 2, 67 goals, 17 conceded, 25 c/s - 88 points - 3rd place
Season 24/25; won 31, drawn 7, lost 0, 101 goals, 15 conceded, 27 c/s - 100 points - 1st place

- reaching 62 games unbeaten across 2 seasons. 

Counter - Very Fluid 

Much Higher Tempo, More Disciplined, Tight Marking, Play Out of Defence 


			SKa
FBs		BPDc	BPDd	FBs			*sometimes change to full backs to WBd after taking enough of a lead if needed.
		BMWd	DLPs				*change DLP to DLPd after reaching comfortable position in game
	IFs		AMs		IFs				
			AFa

 

My interest in that save has somewhat peaked, but I'm very eager to see if I can take on that Mourinho style pragmatism onto a different club and achieve the same results. So have started up a save with PSG, and will implement that value of a clean sheet, with the demand for fast tempo football and pace at the top end of the pitch. 

 

Why would Marcelo be a FB (S) when we bombarded his flank more often than the left back?

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I am in the midst of creating a tactic in the lower leagues with a mourinho-inspired real madrid tactic so reliving this thread has come at a good time.

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10 hours ago, goqs06 said:

Why would Marcelo be a FB (S) when we bombarded his flank more often than the left back?

Because he was using Aymeric Laporte as a left back - its not a true recreation of the tactic, just clearly inspired by it.

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23 minutes ago, zlatanera said:

Because he was using Aymeric Laporte as a left back - its not a true recreation of the tactic, just clearly inspired by it.

Oh I see...

Edited by goqs06

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