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FMWolf

Mourinho's 2009/2010 Inter Milan

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So after deciding to start a new save on FM17 before FM18 comes out, it was time to have some fun trying to figure out what team to pick and most essential what style of football I what to implement in the long term. S. C. Braga was the team and the tactical inspiration came from ... José Mourinho! Why? Well, I've wanted to successfully implement a 4-2-3-1 this year and I as was reading through a topic here, I noticed @Cleon mentioned that he always used two DM's instead of two CM's when using a 4-2-3-1 and I thought: "Is this the answer to make it work?" And BAM! Cambiasso and Stankovic instantly came to mind, all Inter's team was just showing up :D

So I digged a bit deeper into the system (main sources: http://www.italianfootballdaily.com/calcio-tactics-through-time-jose-mourinhos-inter-milan-2008-10/ and http://www.zonalmarking.net/2010/05/23/inter-bayern-champions-league-final-tactics/) and started taking away some conclusions about the overall system:

  • Fairly conservative side: low-ish tempo and closing down and a deep-ish block;
  • Counter attack based;
  • Except for Milito, everyone tracked back;

Here I had mentality sorted out: Counter. Shape is where I'm having must trouble deciding with either Flexible or Structured and I change between the two. Formation wise a deep 4-2-3-1. Next it was the players roles and duties. Starting with the back four they had:

  • Julio Cesar: incredible reflexes, was there to stop shots coming in. A Goalkeeper - Defend for me;
  • Lucio and Samuel: two straight central defenders, so Central Defender - Defend;
  • Maicon: the bombing full back on the right side. Would go up and down the right flank all day long. Role chosen Wing Back - Attack;
  • Zanetti: words can't really describe Zanetti, but he was used to maintan the balance of the back four, being more cautious when the team was on the attack. I went with Full Back - Support with the PI's: Dribble Less, Pass It Shorter, Fewer Risky Passes and Sit Narrower;

Onto the midfield now. Let me just say that even though this a deep 4-2-3-1, I use one AMC as I felt it replicated Sneijder role better;

  • Cambiasso: fantastic reader of the game would be in charge of covering up the right flank when Maicon went forward. Would also launch counter attacks from the back plenty of times. Decided to go with a Defensive Midfielder - Support with the PI's: Hold Position and More Direct Passes;
  • Stankovic: the other pivot who had a bit more freedom to venture forward. Scored a couple of goals too. Again a Defensive Midfielder - Support with the PI Get Further Forward;
  • Eto'o: the 30 goals last season man came to Mourinho's and he decided he would play in the ... right flank! He had the work rate to come and defend and, obviously, was great when going forward, cutting in a being almost a second striker to the system. To replicate I decided to go with a Wide Midfielder - Attack with the PI's: Sit Narrower, Roam From Position, Close Down More and Tackle Harder. PPM's here would also be vital I think. Im going with Move Into Channels and Gets Forward Whenever Possible as the essential ones for now;
  • Pandev: another forward moved to the flanks. He didn't do as much as Eto'o and was a "keep the balance player". A Wide Midfielder - Support with the PI's: Close Down More and Tackle Harder;
  • Sneijder: one of the last number 10 in modern football but didn't neglect his defensive duties. I opted for a Advanced Playmaker - Support with the PI's Close Down More;

The lonely forward was Diego Milito, a clinical finisher, a true number 9. Always ready to break defensive lines aswell as carry the ball forward. Advanced Forward - Attack seems the best option to replicate that. All put together:

59a9741a93b23_SemTtulo.thumb.jpg.d110ec62c243475da6f3d15a2726e2ef.jpg

I had no TI's at first but decided to add Play Into Space to try and maximize counter opportunities and Play Fairly Narrower as after watching a couple of games I felt players were a bit too much far apart from each other resulting in a lot of lost balls.

Why post it here? Well, first of all I really like the discussion when it comes to try and mimic some real life setting. Secondly, even though it is bringing me some good results, it's failing to do what it should do best: beat better teams than us. So far, I've only lost to Porto, Sporting and Benfica which makes sense from a quality of players point of view, but makes me angry that we aren't capitalizing against this teams. And in the Portuguese Premier League, if you lose 6 games, you're pretty much out of the title discussion :( So any advice on this would also be awesome!

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Just to add some random imput from what I remember of this side:

Mentality and shape for me were Standard/Flexible. Mourinho always seeks balance, in every aspects of the game.

TI's were much direct passing (you can see that watching some youtube video's on how this team used to play), slightly deeper defensive line, be more disciplined and I would build from that.

PI's probably I would put more direct passes on the sneijder role, and increase pressing and tight marking on the wingers, cause they really did track back.

About player roles, Maicon was the definition of a complete wing back (attack) for me. He had total freedom and used to roam a lot, cut inside, shoot, cross, whatever.

Zanetti maybe a Wingback (support), he seldomly ran with ball back and forth through his wing.

I would try Lucio as a ball playing defender, but my concerns aim the midfield duo. For me Cambiasso was a deep lying playmaker (defend) at that stage of his career. I agree with the Stojkovic (or Motta) role, but I also believe this would be the most difficult role to replicate alongside Eto'o and Pandev.

 

Perhaps this might be useful :

 

Edited by davidbarros2
Insert video

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I don't know how relevant this would be to his Inter days, since Mourinho eventually ended up playing a 4-3-1-2 with them, but I've been trying to play "the Mourinho way" in my Southampton save, and after a season of tweaking about, I eventually came up with:

59a9d69b33b79_mourinho4231.thumb.png.481ed807bd4c1853c4acb64203b66e51.png

He usually has one fullback being very cautious and one given license to overlap, but not to an insane degree. You can see that these days at United with Blind/Valencia.

My midfield pivot is more similar to the Alonso/Khedira, Matic/Ramires types, with a sitter and a runner, both protecting the defence in some way. I'm only Southampton, so I'll take the conservative option! Id say his Matic/Fabregas, Matic/Pogba combinations would probably be a DLP/RPM pairing.

I think having the wide players in the AM strata makes a bit more sense for counter attacking football, so as you can get the ball out quickly to them. They track back well enough from there on support duties. He usually has one stretching the play and the only drifting infield, although depending on personnel, sometimes both drift infield, sometimes one is a playmaker, or sometimes one is a direct goal-threat.

I think the AP(s) is an obvious choice for the Sneijder/Ozil/Oscar/Mhiki role. I went with A CF(a) as the attacker, because he generally goes for multi-talented forwards and - like you said - it's generally the only role that doesn't track back.

As to the TI's:

59a9d9bd3d213_mourinho4231.thumb.png.a393c75e443ef8dc83662b77017cf189.png

I use a higher defensive line to offset the fact that when you use 2 DM's, your line naturally drops deeper. I really want to avoid this, especially if I'm using the Counter mentality and the line is already pretty deep

I opted for the Structured mentality since Mourinho is the "everyone's got a job" type, but that has the side effect of lessening creative freedom. So I've offset that with "Be more Expressive." Mourinho might make sure his players are clear on their roles, but he doesn't go around telling his attacking players how to attack.

Prevent short GK Distribution mimics the "high press, low block" ethos he has - forward players disrupt the backline, but on the whole, his sides don't charge around for the ball.

More Direct passing speeds up our transitions out of defence nicely enough, and it mimics how his side look to attack teams at pace. Clear ball to flanks is a more situational one, but his sides sometimes do this to take advantage of their quick wide players.

All of that's just half the battle though, which is why I'm enjoying this save so much. Mourinho is nothing if not the pragmatist, so the TI's still chop and change, the roles are subject to personnel, and the mentality flips from Counter to Control - all according to who we're up against and what's happening on the pitch. WHat I've posted above is really just what I think his base ideology is.

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I made this for FM16, seems a lifetime ago:

Important to note that Mourino used various different roles within this framework. I made mine based off some of the key games that season, I doubt they were that defensive the whole season.

IMO the 2009/10 Inter side were one of the best teams in history. A very complete side. 

Yeah, I'm reading @Jean0987654321s thread now, check that one out too.

Edited by Ji-Sung Park

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Hey guys, thanks for the replies! Only now I had some time to read them, so sorry about that.

@davidbarros2 I think you can achieve balance with every mentality/shape combination you want to chose. But Standard/Flexible could also work ofc, with some TI's added. I agree on the Maicon role, but at the moment I just don't have the players quality to use a CWB-A. As for Zanetti, I have a FB-S who also goes up, just on a more cautious way, which I think represents exactly what Zanetti did;

@vrig some valid points there as you make a more overall look at Mourinho over the years. I just think that, even though it has some basics Mou almost always employs in his teams, his Inter side was rather unique. And yeah, sometimes I moved my MR to the AMR position, but as the players I had there learned some PPM's this became more useless as I was obtaining pretty much the same thing from the MR position and with the advantage of being a more customizable role;

@Jean0987654321 a nice read! We would always achieve a different formation because I really want to use the double DM's pivot (and they have been working! :D). As for the use of the defensive wingers, I don't really think you need to use them, as you can get the same behaviour from a Wide Midfielder, who as said above is more customizable and allows you to select an attack duty to the right midfielder that really helps when going on the counter;

@Ji-Sung Park the other shape he used other than the 4-2-3-1. Not exactly what I'm trying to do, but I got curious when you describe Cambiasso and put the PI's Pass It Shorter as I think he should have the exact opposite of that since he had the license to launch some counter attacks;

Overall, I think we can all agree that this system should be played on Counter mentality and on the more structured side of shape. I think this is the combination that would allow more counters to be triggered as it would allow my RM to break from the more conservative approach Counter mentality gives the team (maybe @Rashidi could help a bit here, but I think it's correct). I ended up finishing 4th in the league, with a very good run of results (and finally a win against one of the big three!) that almost got us into 2nd place! We had the best goalscorer, 2nd best player and player with most assists. Curiously, with this being a rather defensive system, we had the 3rd best attack and the 4th best defence. Being a club like Braga will make this a biggest challenge as the difference in quality to the "big three" is a big one. But if we can get some better players, more suitable to the system (which with the transfer bugdet and repution we have won't be an easy task) maybe we can challenge for the title next year!

 

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6 hours ago, FMWolf said:

Hey guys, thanks for the replies! Only now I had some time to read them, so sorry about that.

@davidbarros2 I think you can achieve balance with every mentality/shape combination you want to chose. But Standard/Flexible could also work ofc, with some TI's added. I agree on the Maicon role, but at the moment I just don't have the players quality to use a CWB-A. As for Zanetti, I have a FB-S who also goes up, just on a more cautious way, which I think represents exactly what Zanetti did;

@vrig some valid points there as you make a more overall look at Mourinho over the years. I just think that, even though it has some basics Mou almost always employs in his teams, his Inter side was rather unique. And yeah, sometimes I moved my MR to the AMR position, but as the players I had there learned some PPM's this became more useless as I was obtaining pretty much the same thing from the MR position and with the advantage of being a more customizable role;

@Jean0987654321 a nice read! We would always achieve a different formation because I really want to use the double DM's pivot (and they have been working! :D). As for the use of the defensive wingers, I don't really think you need to use them, as you can get the same behaviour from a Wide Midfielder, who as said above is more customizable and allows you to select an attack duty to the right midfielder that really helps when going on the counter;

@Ji-Sung Park the other shape he used other than the 4-2-3-1. Not exactly what I'm trying to do, but I got curious when you describe Cambiasso and put the PI's Pass It Shorter as I think he should have the exact opposite of that since he had the license to launch some counter attacks;

Overall, I think we can all agree that this system should be played on Counter mentality and on the more structured side of shape. I think this is the combination that would allow more counters to be triggered as it would allow my RM to break from the more conservative approach Counter mentality gives the team (maybe @Rashidi could help a bit here, but I think it's correct). I ended up finishing 4th in the league, with a very good run of results (and finally a win against one of the big three!) that almost got us into 2nd place! We had the best goalscorer, 2nd best player and player with most assists. Curiously, with this being a rather defensive system, we had the 3rd best attack and the 4th best defence. Being a club like Braga will make this a biggest challenge as the difference in quality to the "big three" is a big one. But if we can get some better players, more suitable to the system (which with the transfer bugdet and repution we have won't be an easy task) maybe we can challenge for the title next year!

 

Do as you will, mate. IMO, I don't think two DMs is the way to go but if it works for you, okay. As for the DWs, it was just a way for me to archive compactness with a different shape like Rigid. You should also read Ozil's Wales thread  if you need more inspiration...

Edited by Jean0987654321

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@Jean0987654321 How did the DW's worked for you when you got the ball deep? I've experimented with them and it seemed like they took way to much time to get forward, preventing some good counter chances. Maybe it could be a PPM's thing? Even though my players have the Get Forward Whenever Possible learned (not sure it aplies in this case, but I hope so)

As I'm going through the 2nd season, we are sitting in the 2nd place right now, which is good, but having a big problem: my striker, who was top goalscorer of the league last season, only has 1 goal in 14 matches... What happened there? :idiot:

On the tactical side, I've switched my right DM to defend in some games to try and really ensure he provides cover for the right full back: so far seems to be a good change. I've also toyed with Move Into Channels for the AMC, as I really think Sneijder had that liberty to do a lot of lateral movement.

This is definitely still work in progress and I'll try and keep it update!

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4 hours ago, FMWolf said:

@Jean0987654321 How did the DW's worked for you when you got the ball deep? I've experimented with them and it seemed like they took way to much time to get forward, preventing some good counter chances. Maybe it could be a PPM's thing? Even though my players have the Get Forward Whenever Possible learned (not sure it aplies in this case, but I hope so)

As I'm going through the 2nd season, we are sitting in the 2nd place right now, which is good, but having a big problem: my striker, who was top goalscorer of the league last season, only has 1 goal in 14 matches... What happened there? :idiot:

On the tactical side, I've switched my right DM to defend in some games to try and really ensure he provides cover for the right full back: so far seems to be a good change. I've also toyed with Move Into Channels for the AMC, as I really think Sneijder had that liberty to do a lot of lateral movement.

This is definitely still work in progress and I'll try and keep it update!

I had players on the wings that had the PPMs "Get Further Forward" and/or "Gets Into Opposition Area". As Cleon said, it is easy for players to ignore PIs but it is rare for them to ignore their PPMs. My DWs were Mbappe, Mor, Candreva, and Gabigol. Not bad for young talent. Got second in my first season at Inter ;)

Edited by Jean0987654321

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@Jean0987654321 Wow, definitely a gap in player quality ahah! Mbappe seems like the perfect player to emulate Eto'o in this team!

One problem I'm having right now is playing against very deep teams. As we have a deep formation, that leaves them with space to just pass the ball around in the midfield. Just had a game against a much inferior team who got 69% possession and 15+ shots from outside our box! My game plan on those games has to be different. And we also still struggle against the "big three". Not as bad as last season where we lost 5 games and won 1. So far, 1L, 1D and 1V: not perfect, but an improvement!

Edited by FMWolf

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So, 2nd place in our 2nd season that equals Champions League football! But all of this seems to have come at a cost: the struggle I talked about when playing against deep sides seems to be increasing as more teams are playing deeper and deeper against us. This really puts the deep 4-2-3-1 to a test. So, more games where our opponents are having 60% ball possession and a bunch of shots around our box. Plus, since they're deep themselves, when we get the ball back, there isn't really an opportunity for us to go on the counter :s So to counter (:D) this, I've set up a straight 4-2-3-1:

59af1d0910cfe_SemTtulo.thumb.jpg.759c1f67ba42aff0f60b25f26e5f7dd9.jpg

Still using Couter mentality to ensure we keep a low-ish block, but a much more forward thinking formation to try and put pressure on the very deep sides. All of that maintaining Inter's flow of play: focus on the right wing, with a double pivot on midfield, a number 10 ahead and a finisher to put it against the net.

Taking that out of the equation, the deep 4-2-3-1 seems to be doing well for Champions League! We managed to grab 2 wins against Juventus, 1 against Ajax and 1 draw against Leverkusen, guaranteeing a place in the next round! I've dropped the TI Play Fairly Narrow and added Higher Tempo. I still feel like my MR isn't moving up as fast as I would like him to be though, and I can't really understand why.

As always, any advice is welcome!

Edited by FMWolf
new tactic added

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Just a quick update: 3rd season endend with mixed results: we finished 3rd, which is a step down from last season and to be honest we were very lucky to do so. On the other hand, we went to Champions League's quarter finals! Being eliminated by Monaco (who haven't sold any top talent) was no shame at all, and with some luck we could have gone to the semis.

As far as tactics go, de deep 4-2-3-1 proved to be inefficient against weaker sides and got us a lot of draws. Since I started using the "normal" 4-2-3-1, results improved, so with a bit of improvement we may get a good season.

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creating an emulation of mourinhos inter milan has always been something of an interest to me, the biggest issue i have is with the sneijder role

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here's what i've come up with and had some success with:

do take note that instead of having the maicon/eto'o roles on the right side i use the left since i consider that side of my team stronger, it's just mirrored

d239b2e673.png

for player instructions on the AP slot I have close down more and more direct passing, for the left midfield slot I have: dribble more, close down more, sit narrower and cut inside with ball. I will also occasionally put stay wider on my left back. the CF slot would also be beneficial to have the move into channels TI, my forward already has this.

as you can see lars bender is in the halfback slot, this is probably the most important position i've found, when maicon used to dash up the pitch, in my case wendell, cambiasso used to fill in the gaps left behind, this means lars bender will at times be filling in for LB/CB/DM, much like the 09/10 cambiasso used to do.

i'm still unsure of the pandev slot so currently we have bellarbi in the defensive winger slot, I need to play around more but it's a mix up between WM(s) and DW(s) currently.

for the stankovic role I opted for a BWM(s), the way the front press is key to the defensive side of the tactic, we used to see stankovic harassing until the ball was won and then joining the attack but lurking on the outside of the area, the bwm does this perfectly

for the milito role I opted for a complete forward, I alternate between support and attack for this.

let's look at the team instructions

87c042624d.png

everything here is pretty self explanatory and fits with the mourinho ethos

counter/structured, I want to play around more with this. For home games the majority of times we used to see inter with 55%+ possession and a more alternating tempo since the main focus wasn't on sit deep, win ball, attack at speed. a 2nd variant perhaps with the standard or control mentality would have definitely been used so I must create this later on.

the width, i wanted the build up to have the exploit the middle TI, and I don't like using this with balanced, with balanced the wide players are more likely to free up space for us to attack the middle and then quickly cut back into the mid sections of the pitch whilst we have the ball, with the width narrowed it just wasn't working how i wanted.

onto results, it's still early days, we've played 7 competitive matches so far

3b4747923d.png

here's a few extra screenshots:

0eff8cc714.jpg

f6e1f28499.jpg

completely nullifying the attack and only allowing a threat from long shots

f6a603cacc.jpg

8 games 0 conceded, only really allowing long shots.

0c583e4b66.png

sometimes using this also, obviously volland is the milito role and brandt is the eto'o role 

so far overall using these i've gone 10 games in the bundesliga, with 1 goal conceded, 9 wins 1 draw, 22 goals scored

799f6c793c.jpg

Edited by stfumug
more pictures

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Seems great!

Out of curiosity, how is the goal/assist distribution?

For instance, mostly through crosses or through balls, and how many assists is the sneijder role getting?

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42 minutes ago, davidbarros2 said:

Seems great!

Out of curiosity, how is the goal/assist distribution?

For instance, mostly through crosses or through balls, and how many assists is the sneijder role getting?

12 games 8 assists from the sneijder position in the bundesliga

134eeeae9f.png

heres the last 10 matches goal analysis

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c5f56b6aa1.jpg

hehe only 1 of the 13 on target shots are from inside the box, for this game i change to much deeper, play out of defence and flexible, also made my eto'o guy man mark their right winger james rodriguez, he surprisingly ended up making more tackles than anyone on the team

Edited by stfumug

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On 17/09/2017 at 22:40, stfumug said:

here's what i've come up with and had some success with:

do take note that instead of having the maicon/eto'o roles on the right side i use the left since i consider that side of my team stronger, it's just mirrored

d239b2e673.png

for player instructions on the AP slot I have close down more and more direct passing, for the left midfield slot I have: dribble more, close down more, sit narrower and cut inside with ball. I will also occasionally put stay wider on my left back. the CF slot would also be beneficial to have the move into channels TI, my forward already has this.

as you can see lars bender is in the halfback slot, this is probably the most important position i've found, when maicon used to dash up the pitch, in my case wendell, cambiasso used to fill in the gaps left behind, this means lars bender will at times be filling in for LB/CB/DM, much like the 09/10 cambiasso used to do.

i'm still unsure of the pandev slot so currently we have bellarbi in the defensive winger slot, I need to play around more but it's a mix up between WM(s) and DW(s) currently.

for the stankovic role I opted for a BWM(s), the way the front press is key to the defensive side of the tactic, we used to see stankovic harassing until the ball was won and then joining the attack but lurking on the outside of the area, the bwm does this perfectly

for the milito role I opted for a complete forward, I alternate between support and attack for this.

let's look at the team instructions

87c042624d.png

everything here is pretty self explanatory and fits with the mourinho ethos

counter/structured, I want to play around more with this. For home games the majority of times we used to see inter with 55%+ possession and a more alternating tempo since the main focus wasn't on sit deep, win ball, attack at speed. a 2nd variant perhaps with the standard or control mentality would have definitely been used so I must create this later on.

the width, i wanted the build up to have the exploit the middle TI, and I don't like using this with balanced, with balanced the wide players are more likely to free up space for us to attack the middle and then quickly cut back into the mid sections of the pitch whilst we have the ball, with the width narrowed it just wasn't working how i wanted.

onto results, it's still early days, we've played 7 competitive matches so far

3b4747923d.png

here's a few extra screenshots:

0eff8cc714.jpg

f6e1f28499.jpg

completely nullifying the attack and only allowing a threat from long shots

f6a603cacc.jpg

8 games 0 conceded, only really allowing long shots.

0c583e4b66.png

sometimes using this also, obviously volland is the milito role and brandt is the eto'o role 

so far overall using these i've gone 10 games in the bundesliga, with 1 goal conceded, 9 wins 1 draw, 22 goals scored

799f6c793c.jpg

Testing it myself and so far looks great!

Any reason for changing the milito role from support to attack and the other way around?

How about the second tactic, when do you use it? or it was just for testing purposes?

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Great thread so far. Mourinho á la Inter 2009/2010 was the start of exploring the tactical side of the game for me, so I'm really excited to try myself and to read here. Imo what he did with Inter was incredible tactical wise!

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Putting Stankovic as a simple destroyer or a ball winner midfielder is so wrong and incorrect. He clearly was a deep lying playmaker or at least with a role with a good passing ability. Motta was clearly a more destroyer player type and he was used with that intent. The game he does against Barcelona is the clear example of this (the 2nd or 3rd goal is a clear example of this). 

With this being said this was the team most difficult to replicate of all Mourinho's teams. With Porto, Chelsea and Madrid you could see a clear pattern that was showed all season (at least some points were always present). If I was to replicate this team I would focus only in the games against Barcelona and the final with Bayern. This were the best performances. Inter was very irregular all year losing an advantage of 13 points to Roma and only edging them again in the end. Also the quality of play was not constant along the year with the constant injuries of Sneijder and others. The patterns of play changed so much and that's why that for me it's almost impossible to define a style on this team and maybe be better to focus on those specific games. In the home game with Barcelona we saw an attacking game from them and that could be the home tactic for the replication. The other two games can be used to define the system for more difficult away days.

Just my two cents.

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