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stevecummins78

Help needed with my 4-1-2-3

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The most important thing I've learned in the past few months is that losing is quite important because you get to watch key moments in that game and figure out what to improve on so you can avoid it in the future.

Now I actually don't feel so bad about losing because it helps me understand the flaws in my current system.

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10 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

Then lost 0-1 at Napoli. Back to square one.

I've kept up with this post and it really does seem like you expect an awful lot. The feeling I get is that you are expecting to "crack" the game with one tactic that will win against any opposition in any circumstance.

My advice would be to stick with one of the (too) many versions of your 4-1-2-3 and play it for several games so you can learn how it works, as you really don't seem to know what you want. Once you have a decent sample size (3-5 games), take the time to look at your tactic in depth and post back here so people can help you. Hopefully through this process you'll gain a better understanding and learn that the small tweaks here and there will be what allows you to put together a good run of wins/draws as opposed to constantly changing roles/instructuions/mentality/shape in the hope that something will stick.

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11 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

This makes so much sense, thank you. Screenshots as requested below. I'm going to carry on with 4132 but am going to try and be a bit more patient to allow the players to catch up as you suggest. Do you think TI 'work in to box' and 'look for overlap' would work?

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Thank you for providing the screenshots requested. In answer to your question, I'm not sure whether selecting those TIs will help or not. Selecting look for overlap wouldn't really make sense here as the players you expect your fullbacks to overlap (AMR/AML) are so far ahead of them on the pitch. In addition, the players you have in the AMR & AML position aren't particularly strong and would struggle to hold onto the ball while they wait for the fullbacks to get up the pitch and overlap. Finally, it would only really come into action on your left flank where you have an attack duty fullback behind an inside forward as overlaps occur on the outside and the winger wants to run wide.

As for the TI Work Ball Into Box, from the description, I think it best suits systems which are top heavy in that it encourages a bit of patience in the final third which might be useful if you want to pass your way through the defence. I don't tend to use it myself so whether it would help or not I'm not sure. Perhaps someone else who has used it in a 4-1-2-3 Wide can help or you could test it to see what it does in your system. However, I would caution against adding any TIs unless you understand exactly what they are changing and would look at the player roles and duties, formation and players available to assess whether they are capable of carrying out the instruction before committing to adding it. For e.g. I wouldn't add offside trap unless I had players which had good (for the level I'm playing at) positioning and acceleration attributes.

Looking at the tactic you used there are a few issues which I'd like to highlight.

1) You have a Ball Playing Defender in the tactic which contradicts the whole approach of patiently building up play and waiting for players to get into advanced positions. It may be De Ligt's best role but it doesn't suit the whole system which goes back to the point I made earlier in that you need to balance the tactic so all the players are working together.

2) You have a Mezzala who is going to roam and to attack the half-spaces / channels. The problem with this is two-fold, firstly Pellegrini is better suited as some sort of playmaker. Secondly, in the Mezzala role, he will look to attack the same space (run into the channels) you want your striker to attack. This isn't a good idea, ideally, you want players coming from deeper positions to be attacking space which the more advanced players are creating for them by dragging opposition defenders out of position. 

3) The Advanced Forward is going to be incredibly isolated in this setup even though he is a number 9 type role. When playing with a lone striker in a system which relies on being patient enough to allow the support to get up the pitch you need to have a striker that at the least has 'Hold Up Ball' either as a default PI or one which you can add. If you want to keep him as your main goalscorer then you need to keep him on the attack duty but choose a more suitable role, the role which Martinez is best at might actually do the trick here if you want the player to be your main goalscorer.

4) What is the reason behind the 'Stay on Feet' TI?

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10 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

Then lost 0-1 at Napoli. Back to square one.

How are you back to square one by losing one game?

I think you are changing things way too much. The tactic you used against Chelsea is completely different from the one you posted that you used against Torino.

I'm repeating myself but who is the number 9 in that Chelsea system as all I see are number 10s.

Who is creating space ahead of the right fullback for him to attack? Which goes back to my point about needing to have the partnerships right.

I think because you are changing things so often you're not giving yourself the opportunity to spot any patterns.

At this point, I think it would be beneficial for you to do as @felley suggests. I feel you should have a good understanding of the nuts and bolts of your tactic before adding complexity to it with TIs.

Watch the games with a critical eye and ask yourself questions as you go along and make notes.

For e.g. when analysing the tactic you used against Torino.

Is my left back regularly overlapping my IF?

Are my front 3 close enough together to link up easily?

Are my front 3 close enough to my midfield?

Where am I winning the ball back?

Where am I losing the ball most often and why?

What type of service am I giving my striker?

What kind of chances is the tactic creating?

Are all the players I expect to contribute to attacks doing so?

What options does each of my players have when they get the ball?

Then repeat that for the next 5 games or so without making changes and post your findings.

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Thanks for all these comments. Depressingly it does seem that I have the wrong mix of players, I feel like I've wasted at least one transfer window.

This is the tactic I am now going to use for the next 6 games. The only PIs at Correa to sit narrower as the 10 and Never to play more first passes.

 

Screen Shot 2018-06-06 at 16.35.37.png

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Since your roles are pretty similar to my tactic, I had a lot of success with the formation with Inter.

Started using it in second season, 82 points.

Third 96, 85-20 GD.

Fourth 96, 92-16 GD, 19-0-0 at home.

Player instructions:

Roll it out for goalkeeper.

Fullbacks - get further forward, run wide, stay wider.

B2B - further forward, move into channels.

Front 3 - close down more and more risky passes for inside forwards. I switch between IF and W depending on the players, but it's usually 1 winger and 1 IF.

I also use DLP-D on DM and 2xB2B occasionally. Standard mentality in difficult away games.

apb3lwN.png

T1vZ4xL.png

3DMXdr7.png

SutBR6Y.png

Really strong team now, but I basically played the second string team for the last 15 league games and never saw any performance drops.
As you can see, goals/assists numbers are great for every offensive player.

Key players:

Quick CBs. Pace of at least 12-13. 

Defensively sound FBs. I avoid fullbacks with key defensive and mental stats lower than 12-13.

Tall DM, helps a lot with long balls. Torreira is really short and I dislike having a DM with no aerial presence.
When I have both DLP and AP game tends to get a lot slower than I'd like it to be.

Physically imposing B2B midfielder. Goalscoring threat and good defensive contribution are needed.

Real no9. I like strikers that focus on goalscoring, not build-up play.

 

Imo, your tactic has no goalscoring threat from the midfield and CF-S role on the striker leaves the box completely empty in most cases.
Especially since you're playing with a team that should dominate in most league games.

Edited by GunmaN1905

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37 minutes ago, GunmaN1905 said:

Since your roles are pretty similar to my tactic, I had a lot of success with the formation with Inter.

Started using it in second season, 82 points.

Third 96, 85-20 GD.

Fourth 96, 92-16 GD, 19-0-0 at home.

Player instructions:

Roll it out for goalkeeper.

Fullbacks - get further forward, run wide, stay wider.

B2B - further forward, move into channels.

Front 3 - close down more and more risky passes for inside forwards. I switch between IF and W depending on the players, but it's usually 1 winger and 1 IF.

I also use DLP-D on DM and 2xB2B occasionally. Standard mentality in difficult away games.

apb3lwN.png

T1vZ4xL.png

3DMXdr7.png

SutBR6Y.png

Really strong team now, but I basically played the second string team for the last 15 league games and never saw any performance drops.
As you can see, goals/assists numbers are great for every offensive player.

Key players:

Quick CBs. Pace of at least 12-13. 

Defensively sound FBs. I avoid fullbacks with key defensive and mental stats lower than 12-13.

Tall DM, helps a lot with long balls. Torreira is really short and I dislike having a DM with no aerial presence.
When I have both DLP and AP game tends to get a lot slower than I'd like it to be.

Physically imposing B2B midfielder. Goalscoring threat and good defensive contribution are needed.

Real no9. I like strikers that focus on goalscoring, not build-up play.

 

Imo, your tactic has no goalscoring threat from the midfield and CF-S role on the striker leaves the box completely empty in most cases.
Especially since you're playing with a team that should dominate in most league games.

Thats an amazing team, how did you get Martinez as an IF?

Your TI contradict so much of what else has been said on this thread, but you got results. Beginning to think it doesn't really matter and it is just about players.

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I played 4-4-2 in the first season, with Icardi-Martinez duo upfront.

Finished 3rd with 77 points but was really unhappy with the performance in most games.

Martinez took like 2 seasons to become accomplished in AML position and nearly another one to become natural.

I even started this save because I was wildly inconsistent in every other 18.3 save and I got pretty mad.
My teams would play amazingly well for a month, then completely collapse.
Not even typical FM losses where you dominate, but terrible strings of performances overall.

So I took Inter. Haven't played with them since the release and it's the most familiar team and league to me.

 

As for the TIs, I could never create a pressing-based tactics.
I dislike offside traps and I always got killed on crosses with tighter marking.
FBs lose their men, CBs constantly lose duels, etc.

Play out of defense, overlap and work ball into box add some balance, otherwise it would be a complete route one, direct passing style.
Idk, that's something I dislike about FM tactics. For example, you can't add instructions like don't force long balls, but if an opportunity is there don't hesitate.
It's always either or.

But yeah, I never have a lot of possession unless I'm playing against relegation teams. It's always fast-paced transition game, but without route one passes.

I also dislike using wide formations because in defensive phase team sits too wide and it leads to poor defending.
I rather use sit wider instructions for FBs.

Support duties for the front 3 slow down the offense a lot, at least for me. I want my wingers to be direct.
Close down more instruction makes them maintain formation in defense. I even use man marking sometimes, wingers should never leave opposition fullbacks.

I also think using 2DM and a CM would be even better for defensive purposes.
Segundo Volante with get further forward instruction next to a DM. Would serve the same purpose as B2B in offense.

I even managed to work out good offensive/defensive set-piece schemes.

 

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1 hour ago, stevecummins78 said:

Thanks for all these comments. Depressingly it does seem that I have the wrong mix of players, I feel like I've wasted at least one transfer window.

This is the tactic I am now going to use for the next 6 games. The only PIs at Correa to sit narrower as the 10 and Never to play more first passes.

 

Screen Shot 2018-06-06 at 16.35.37.png

Sorry to be blunt, and I may be wrong here, but, I don't feel you've put a lot of thought into this tactic. You haven't got any team instructions which is good, but whenever you create a tactic you need to think about space - who's controlling space? who's attacking space? How can I take advantage of the space X creates? You also need to consider the main players responsible for defending, your main creators & goalscorers. 

The basic rule of thumb for a midfield trio is creator, runner and destroyer. Your current trio consists of two creators (DLP & AP) and a destroyer; it's all very static and no one is really looking to support attacks. You're also putting a lot of pressure on the DLP who is going to have to cover two attacking full-backs, which may leave him unable to do his primary role of starting attacks from deeper positions. I'm not overly familiar with your players, but you need to get some movement into that midfield. 

Lastly, the roles of your front three don't make much sense to me. All three of them are looking to use the #10 space, which means the opposition's defence can step up as there is no-one threatening in-behind. This also won't help you against defensive teams which look to shrink this area of the pitch. Breaking down defensive teams requires intelligent movement and the creation of space, but your tactic doesn't really achieve that atm; all three of your forwards are creators, but who are they creating for? 

Personally, I'd start over again, start with your defence and go from there, good luck. :)

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47 minutes ago, jc577 said:

You're also putting a lot of pressure on the DLP who is going to have to cover two attacking full-backs, which may leave him unable to do his primary role of starting attacks from deeper positions

Perhaps you're forgetting that he's expected to be easily the dominant team in most matches. In this situation it doesn't really matter too much. I do similar in my current save (one attacking full back, one supporting complete wing back, and a Regista) but I agree that when facing similar opposition, it could help to address this.

 

50 minutes ago, jc577 said:

All three of them are looking to use the #10 space, which means the opposition's defence can step up as there is no-one threatening in-behind. This also won't help you against defensive teams which look to shrink this area of the pitch. Breaking down defensive teams requires intelligent movement and the creation of space, but your tactic doesn't really achieve that atm; all three of your forwards are creators, but who are they creating for?

Again, I've had huge success with similar to this. I have one Inside Forward on support and the other on attack, but it's not far wrong. With my attacking full backs I find this great for creating space and overloads out wide for somebody to whip the ball into the box for one of the front three to tap it into the goal, which also seems to be one of this match engines favourite goal types. It works well against defensive teams (most teams play defensive against me) but you've obviously got to have the personnel with the right attributes for just nipping in front of a defender to get the tap in.

If I'm to be critical of this tactic, or rather the person creating the tactic, I'd say that even with a mostly dominant team like Roma, you need to have a backup tactic that you can employ for away games/difficult opposition. Don't just say "I'm going to use this for x amount of games and see what happens" because that's nonsense. You won't get the same run of games against the exact same opposition immediately after that to compare if any changes you've made have worked!  

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Here's my home and away tactics, and the results I've been getting this season so far. Bear in mind though that I can/do change small details for a few games. For example, if a team is playing the ridiculous 4222 narrow formation, I'll use 'exploit flanks' to attack them where they're weakest, or I'll have one of my midfielders man mark their play maker if he's influencing things etc. (Also that Chelsea game, I played my reserves lol)

tactic home.jpg

tactic away.jpg

results.jpg

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2 hours ago, jc577 said:

Sorry to be blunt, and I may be wrong here, but, I don't feel you've put a lot of thought into this tactic. You haven't got any team instructions which is good, but whenever you create a tactic you need to think about space - who's controlling space? who's attacking space? How can I take advantage of the space X creates? You also need to consider the main players responsible for defending, your main creators & goalscorers. 

The basic rule of thumb for a midfield trio is creator, runner and destroyer. Your current trio consists of two creators (DLP & AP) and a destroyer; it's all very static and no one is really looking to support attacks. You're also putting a lot of pressure on the DLP who is going to have to cover two attacking full-backs, which may leave him unable to do his primary role of starting attacks from deeper positions. I'm not overly familiar with your players, but you need to get some movement into that midfield. 

Lastly, the roles of your front three don't make much sense to me. All three of them are looking to use the #10 space, which means the opposition's defence can step up as there is no-one threatening in-behind. This also won't help you against defensive teams which look to shrink this area of the pitch. Breaking down defensive teams requires intelligent movement and the creation of space, but your tactic doesn't really achieve that atm; all three of your forwards are creators, but who are they creating for? 

Personally, I'd start over again, start with your defence and go from there, good luck. :)

You are quite right, I just won 4-0 playing with this. Jury is out on whether a poacher works best, but it insured a presence in the box. Trouble is, I want both Ruben Neves and Pellegrini in the team.

Screen Shot 2018-06-06 at 21.36.12.png

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No reason you can;t have Neves and Pellegrini in the team if you find role/duties for each that compliment each other.

As for the Poacher up front, I find them useful as they are good for holding the ball and creating space if no players are there in support.

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4 minutes ago, Snorks said:

No reason you can;t have Neves and Pellegrini in the team if you find role/duties for each that compliment each other.

As for the Poacher up front, I find them useful as they are good for holding the ball and creating space if no players are there in support.

I think the only way to accommodate both is Neves as a DLP and Pellegrini in the BTB role, at least than Pellegrini can get forward and use attacking attributes. I need Zakaria in there as my other midfield as my "destroyer"

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3 minutes ago, stevecummins78 said:

I think the only way to accommodate both is Neves as a DLP and Pellegrini in the BTB role, at least than Pellegrini can get forward and use attacking attributes. I need Zakaria in there as my other midfield as my "destroyer"

Maybe Neves as a dLP and Pellegrini as a Mezzala?

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Am not familiar with Pellegrini in the game, but have had my scouts been watching  Neves as a possible replacement for my ageing DLP - if you an get Pellegrini working beside a DLP ?

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4 minutes ago, Snorks said:

Am not familiar with Pellegrini in the game, but have had my scouts been watching  Neves as a possible replacement for my ageing DLP - if you an get Pellegrini working beside a DLP ?

It could work like this?

Screen Shot 2018-06-06 at 22.36.41.png

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Why are you so obsessed with making Pellegrini into an attacking runner when his attributes are more of a creator or arriving late into the box?  Whilst he has definitely developed from his starting attributes his mobility is not his strength.

Don't look at the midfield in isolation, what are you using around him?  Your also being very generic with who does what rather than how they combine.  Who is a DLP-D in going to create for?  How are you going to create space for the target to be able to create a chance for them?  Does his instructions allow him to look for the target?

Why change from what worked vs Inter?  Just slot him into that tactic as it is, his attributes and traits will affect how he interprets the role.  You don't have to change where your telling players to position and what to do just because your using a different player or because the game doesn't say he's great at that role.

Edited by summatsupeer

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1 minute ago, summatsupeer said:

Why are you so obsessed with making Pellegrini into an attacking runner when his attributes are more of a creator or arriving late into the box?  Whilst he has definitely developed from his starting attributes his mobility is not his strength.

Don't look at the midfield in isolation, what are you using around him?  Your also being very generic with who does what rather than how they combine.  Who is a DLP-D in going to create for?  How are you going to create space for the target to be able to create a chance for them?  Does his instructions allow him to look for the target?

Why change from what worked vs Inter?  Just slot him into that tactic as it is, his attributes and traits will affect how he interprets the role.  You don't have to change where your telling players to position and what to do just because your using a different player or because the game doesn't say he's great at that role.

Its about the balance, I signed Neves to be the deep lying crater, so with Zakaria as a ball winner I have to find a more attacking role for Pellegrini

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1 minute ago, stevecummins78 said:

Its about the balance, I signed Neves to be the deep lying crater, so with Zakaria as a ball winner I have to find a more attacking role for Pellegrini

I think Pellegrini is wasted asa DLP, but if I play him as a AP I then have two playmakers.

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Just now, stevecummins78 said:

Its about the balance, I signed Neves to be the deep lying crater, so with Zakaria as a ball winner I have to find a more attacking role for Pellegrini

Your positioning your pieces on the pitch, they're still the same piece wherever you put them.  He is good at attacking because of his attributes, he doesn't suddenly lose his vision or the ability to pass because of the role/duty.  For example a CM-S can be "attacking" if the player used has good attacking attributes, he doesn't have to be a MEZ or AP or CM-A etc to be attacking.  Put a player who's more of a physical ball winner in the same role and he'll perform it differently but in similar areas.

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9 minutes ago, stevecummins78 said:

I think Pellegrini is wasted asa DLP, but if I play him as a AP I then have two playmakers.

Two playmakers works in a 4-1-2-3 - one deep and one further forward.

The Mez could work too - they tend to open up space for others and create. Use his strengths..

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Just played away at Inter, who are flying a the top, I think i got the tactics right and should have won, missed a hatful of chances. 0-0.

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57 minutes ago, stevecummins78 said:

Excellent 4-0 win against Sampdoria with this line up, looked a lot more dangerous in final third as stats show

Screen Shot 2018-06-07 at 00.38.12.png

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Good win mate. Keep using the tactic as it is for the next 5 games at least, and keep an eye on what’s working & what isn’t, and try to spot how you typically create chances - that way you can tweak better if your team isn’t playing as you know it should.

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Yeah, those are the ones where you if they come at the wrong time its hard to resist the temptation to tear it all up and start again.

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On 06/06/2018 at 17:57, stevecummins78 said:

Thats an amazing team, how did you get Martinez as an IF?

Your TI contradict so much of what else has been said on this thread, but you got results. Beginning to think it doesn't really matter and it is just about players.

I'd say that the tactic you play is as important as the players you have rather than it being 100% just about the players. That tactic is successful because he has one of the best teams in the world which mask some of the contradictions. He is also very astute in his transfer dealings and has a template for the types of players he wants for the style of football (direct) that he plays. He has also had time to mould the team to his liking whilst you are in season one.

On 06/06/2018 at 21:44, Snorks said:

No reason you can;t have Neves and Pellegrini in the team if you find role/duties for each that compliment each other.

As for the Poacher up front, I find them useful as they are good for holding the ball and creating space if no players are there in support.

If the Poacher is holding up the ball and creating space then he isn't really playing like a Poacher. For me, a Poacher is a player who sits on the shoulder of the last defender and focuses solely on feeding off flick-ons or through passes and putting the ball into the back of the net. His job isn't to create space for others but to attack space which is usually behind the oppositions defensive line.

11 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

There are some matches when the tactics don't matter, you just know its not going to be your day

Screen Shot 2018-06-08 at 23.58.14.png

That sounds like you are saying that the only reason why you lost that game was down to luck. The problem with that mindset is that it doesn't challenge you to analyze what went wrong. Instead, what you will do is assume that when you perceive you were the better team that if the result doesn't go your way that it is down to luck and will play the game waiting for luck to come to you.

I wouldn't say that the result was particularly unlucky at all. Their goalkeeper and defenders weren't particularly great and their forward players were woeful. Their only player to get over a 7.0 was Radovanovic who scored their goal. If you were truly unlucky I would have expected to see a lot of the Chievo players with higher ratings. On paper, you are the better team so for the underdog to beat you I would expect them to have to play above their level but that isn't the case. It would be ringing alarm bells for me that an inferior team could beat my team without having to play out of their skin to do so.

I posted earlier that you need to analyse the 5 games and post your findings, you haven't done that and instead have just posted the results. As @summatsupeer posted earlier in the thread you have to help others to help you. Without knowing anything else except the result the advice is going to be very limited in its usefulness.

Edited by pheelf

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Hi. Some people might say we are in the same boat so I'm going to tell you what I learned from my current save. Just like you, I like the 4-1-2-3 formation and I want to use it as much as possible. After all, how am I going to understand how a formation works out in this game if I don't test it? Number 1 thing I could point out for you. Stop changing your tactics everytime you get a poor result. I looked briefly on the previous page and you had 4-1-2-3, then 4-2-3-1, then back to 4-1-2-3, then changed the roles again and again. If you want to understand what works and how it works, then how can you understand if you keep changing things around? This actually sounds like a cliche and I used to think the same but it's really that way.

Okay, then looking at your current tactic. Do you have a plan in your mind of what you're trying to achieve? You're using two IFs, two roles in CM who are Roaming from Position and two attacking fullbacks. Imagine what happens when you're moving forward. Your B2B roams around for space, sometimes leaving his CM position, the IF will probably move narrower while your fullback will move high up the pitch, leaving tons of space behind on the flank to be covered by the CBs (and maybe the DLP-D). Being very aggressive is not always the answer to disrupt deep defences.

You have to think who you want to score your goals, who creates space for those players and how is that going to happen? Also, sometimes it's harder to create space by going in games with the same formation. For example, I find it very difficult to break a 5-3-2 or 3-5-2 with my 4-1-2-3 in the way it is usually set to play. So I need to make some role changes to make sure we try to exploit the space where the opposition's formation is weaker and try to move them out of position.

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11 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

There are some matches when the tactics don't matter, you just know its not going to be your day

 

1 hour ago, pheelf said:

That sounds like you are saying that the only reason why you lost that game was down to luck. The problem with that mindset is that it doesn't challenge you to analyze what went wrong. Instead, what you will do is assume that when you perceive you were the better team that if the result doesn't go your way that it is down to luck and will play the game waiting for luck to come to you.

I wouldn't say that the result was particularly unlucky at all. Their goalkeeper and defenders weren't particularly great and their forward players were woeful. Their only player to get over a 7.0 was Radovanovic who scored their goal. If you were truly unlucky I would have expected to see a lot of the Chievo players with higher ratings. On paper, you are the better team so for the underdog to beat you I would expect them to have to play above their level but that isn't the case. It would be ringing alarm bells for me that an inferior team could beat my team without having to play out of their skin to do so.

Spot on :thup:.

Just a cursory glance at the post match results show that whilst you (steve) enjoyed the majority of possession, less than 50% of your shots were on target.  How come?  Chievo sitting deep forcing you to shoot from distance?  Analyse what went wrong.

Did you make any tactical changes during the match?  If you did, why didn't they work?  If you didn't, why not?  Why did you make the substitutions that you did?  For example, you took off Sanches and Under - what did you hope their replacements would do that they couldn't?

I'm not asking questions here wanting an answer.  Rather these are the type of questions to be asking yourself :).

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I just think Martinez had a stinker playing as a poacher. He missed some very good chances at 0-0. I brought on Under for him and moved Schick to centre forward as he had been in form. Sanchez came on as a BTB to give me another runner from midfield. Didn’t work.

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1 hour ago, herne79 said:

Just a cursory glance at the post match results show that whilst you (steve) enjoyed the majority of possession, less than 50% of your shots were on target.

To be fair though, without having seen the match and the type of chances created, a 46% SoT ratio isn’t atrocious by any means? Again, on face value, you could argue he certainly didn’t deserve to lose the game, but clearly didn’t do enough to win. I’ve played a fair few games where we have a SoT% of less than 50%, but create 3-4 good quality clear-cut chances (not necessarily what the game classes a CCC), and this is what’s most important IMO. Only you (Steve) will know whether you were unlucky or not, based on the quality of chances you created in the game. 

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There's a saying that fits here "Lies, damned lies, and statistics".

The only true way of analysing the performance is to watch it, which we can't do.  Dunno how many I and other people have to say it but just posting results doesn't give us the info the help you.  We have to make a lot of assumptions and however educated they are they are still assumptions.

I think your main issues is when things aren't going well against smaller teams your response is to throw more players forward.  If there is space behind teams that can work but most smaller teams will be deeper so your just throwing players into crowded areas and making it easy.  You need to use the space deeper to pull opponents out of position.  Look at your right side in last tactic you posted, FB-A, MEZ-S and IF-A with a P-A up front.  All have Get Forward instruction.  Your on control + fluid so players closer together and pushing up, no one on that side is really creating space or sitting to draw opponents out.  If you want to make use of runners then you need to let opponents push out when they have the ball and setup to attack quickly which means not Playing Out of Defence but instead having more direct and risky passes, probably from neves as your DLP.

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On 09/06/2018 at 21:36, pheelf said:

If the Poacher is holding up the ball and creating space then he isn't really playing like a Poacher. For me, a Poacher is a player who sits on the shoulder of the last defender and focuses solely on feeding off flick-ons or through passes and putting the ball into the back of the net. His job isn't to create space for others but to attack space which is usually behind the oppositions defensive line.

 

True, but if a Poacher is up there as loan forward, gets the ball, he does keep hold of it until support players arrive - I often see them taking the ball wider, into channels or wing spaces. 

They are a 'Simple' role in the game. Get the ball, if they can't shoot they will try to give it to someone who can. 

I have used a Poacher to great effect as a lone, isolated forward. Get him the ball and he shields it well, drags defenders around and leaves gaps for midfielders to attack. As soon as he feeds someone else he charges in to the box looking for scraps.

 

Edited by Snorks

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On 09/06/2018 at 17:36, pheelf said:

If the Poacher is holding up the ball and creating space then he isn't really playing like a Poacher. For me, a Poacher is a player who sits on the shoulder of the last defender and focuses solely on feeding off flick-ons or through passes and putting the ball into the back of the net. His job isn't to create space for others but to attack space which is usually behind the oppositions defensive line.

A Poacher is an under appreciated role in the game, he doesn't attack the space behind a defensive line like an advanced forward. In fact in some well designed systems a poacher will play the ball back seeking the safe pass or run wide to the flanks when he has no option to score. And this makes him a fairly good option for sides that have strikers with low CA.

 

On 07/06/2018 at 07:40, stevecummins78 said:

Excellent 4-0 win against Sampdoria with this line up, looked a lot more dangerous in final third as stats show

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I would like to credit you for evolving your system over time. The first few iterations weren't very good, they usually had me wondering how you were controlling and exploiting space. This system is better, however, I need to splash some cold water around.

A SOT rate of 35 to 50% is irrelevant, sometimes it can be very bad, sometimes it can be excellent. If all your shots were from inside the box and from open play which weren't very hard, then, its a good number. If your shots on target were from set pieces only, or from range, then this can be a false dawn. What you need to do to get better is to analyse your chances and to see what kind of chances these are. Typically I just gloss over set piece goals and pay more attention to how I control and exploit space in open play and then create chances from them. If you can improve that number by either getting better players for your positions or tweaking the tactic slightly, then you won't need to worry about how the opposition plays against you in most games

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I don't want to derail the thread but as I've been quoted I'll respond.

12 hours ago, Snorks said:

True, but if a Poacher is up there as loan forward, gets the ball, he does keep hold of it until support players arrive - I often see them taking the ball wider, into channels or wing spaces. 

They are a 'Simple' role in the game. Get the ball, if they can't shoot they will try to give it to someone who can. 

I have used a Poacher to great effect as a lone, isolated forward. Get him the ball and he shields it well, drags defenders around and leaves gaps for midfielders to attack. As soon as he feeds someone else he charges in to the box looking for scraps.

 

 

9 hours ago, Rashidi said:

A Poacher is an under appreciated role in the game, he doesn't attack the space behind a defensive line like an advanced forward. In fact in some well designed systems a poacher will play the ball back seeking the safe pass or run wide to the flanks when he has no option to score. And this makes him a fairly good option for sides that have strikers with low CA.

4
4

If what you are saying is true (which I have no doubt that it is) then there are a couple of issues.

Firstly, the description given in the game for the role is completely wrong, there is also nothing in the Poacher role PIs that would suggest the player should behave like you state. In fact, it should be the exact opposite as both 'Run Wide With Ball' and 'Hold Up Ball' aren't selectable.

Secondly, that is not at all how a Poacher behaves IRL. Owen, Inzaghi and Defoe could all be described as being Poachers during their careers and none of them play(ed) the way you describe. Especially since Poacher type players tend to be diminutive I don't recall them regularly being able to shield the ball effectively. What I do see them doing is using their lightning acceleration and intelligent movement to break the offside trap and use their great finishing to score which is in line with how the in-game description says they should behave. 

Lastly, that contradicts the advice that has often been given on this forum that you should never have a role like a Poacher that is supposedly a selfish role as a lone forward. Are you now saying that this isn't true and that it is a viable choice?

I'm most concerned about the last paragraph you said @Snorks where you state that you have used a Poacher to great effect as an isolated forward. This totally contradicts footballing logic in that isolation of players should make them perform much worse, not better.

Also, who is making space for the Poacher when he is up there on his own. That is why I always thought that to adopt a Poacher you really needed to have him partnered with at least another striker who would be on the support duty. That way you have a push-pull lever on the defensive line, the support duty striker pulls the defensive line forward and the Poacher using the threat of running in behind pushes the defensive line back. It is this disruption which then creates the space as the defensive line can't do both simultaneously and keep both players marked.

As a lone striker, the Poacher should be a lot easier to deal with as you can man mark the Poacher and keep the defensive line largely intact as the Poacher should always be in close proximity (within the width of the penalty box) and trying to break the offside trap.

It is this sort of thing which causes unnecessary confusion that makes it so hard for players to learn the game as one part of the game (the TC) is telling you something which isn't consistent with another aspect of the game (the ME). The ME in this instance is in total contradiction to reality which is either a bug (not unheard of as other roles in the past haven't worked correctly) or a poor interpretation (to the point where it behaves completely differently from real life) of what a Poacher's behaviour should be. If not either of those then there must be a serious issue with defending if two central defenders can't defend properly against 1 isolated striker.

Edited by pheelf

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Pochares and AFs in lone forward formations aren't a problem and isolation is something that people are after(so sutructured set ups) couse of how easy is to exploit balls over the top and early crosses in this ME with pacey strikers. In fact the more AFs and Poachers the better add one DLFs to the mixture and there you have it. Or don't even bother with that and use 3 AFs :) 

I'm the person who was using 41221 with DLFs and F9 religiously and the moment I thought that balls over the top and early crosses might be op I changed ideas and started to create tactics which exploit it and my conclusion is that it's way easier and a lot more effective. 

2 hours ago, pheelf said:

serious issue with defending if two central defenders can't defend properly against 1 isolated striker.

They are only good when you play with striker who drops deep. 

When you look at forums and people struggling with the tactics it's dominated by 41221s with lone striker who drops

Edited by mortiscausa

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10 hours ago, pheelf said:

I don't want to derail the thread but as I've been quoted I'll respond.

 

If what you are saying is true (which I have no doubt that it is) then there are a couple of issues.

Firstly, the description given in the game for the role is completely wrong, there is also nothing in the Poacher role PIs that would suggest the player should behave like you state. In fact, it should be the exact opposite as both 'Run Wide With Ball' and 'Hold Up Ball' aren't selectable.

Secondly, that is not at all how a Poacher behaves IRL. Owen, Inzaghi and Defoe could all be described as being Poachers during their careers and none of them play(ed) the way you describe. Especially since Poacher type players tend to be diminutive I don't recall them regularly being able to shield the ball effectively. What I do see them doing is using their lightning acceleration and intelligent movement to break the offside trap and use their great finishing to score which is in line with how the in-game description says they should behave. 

Lastly, that contradicts the advice that has often been given on this forum that you should never have a role like a Poacher that is supposedly a selfish role as a lone forward. Are you now saying that this isn't true and that it is a viable choice?

I'm most concerned about the last paragraph you said @Snorks where you state that you have used a Poacher to great effect as an isolated forward. This totally contradicts footballing logic in that isolation of players should make them perform much worse, not better.

Also, who is making space for the Poacher when he is up there on his own. That is why I always thought that to adopt a Poacher you really needed to have him partnered with at least another striker who would be on the support duty. That way you have a push-pull lever on the defensive line, the support duty striker pulls the defensive line forward and the Poacher using the threat of running in behind pushes the defensive line back. It is this disruption which then creates the space as the defensive line can't do both simultaneously and keep both players marked.

As a lone striker, the Poacher should be a lot easier to deal with as you can man mark the Poacher and keep the defensive line largely intact as the Poacher should always be in close proximity (within the width of the penalty box) and trying to break the offside trap.

It is this sort of thing which causes unnecessary confusion that makes it so hard for players to learn the game as one part of the game (the TC) is telling you something which isn't consistent with another aspect of the game (the ME). The ME in this instance is in total contradiction to reality which is either a bug (not unheard of as other roles in the past haven't worked correctly) or a poor interpretation (to the point where it behaves completely differently from real life) of what a Poacher's behaviour should be. If not either of those then there must be a serious issue with defending if two central defenders can't defend properly against 1 isolated striker.

What you are describing there is what I see as an Advanced Forward in the game, playing off the shoulder of the last defender, and using pace and anticipation to get behind the defender for balls played into that space.

I think you may have taken my post literally about the Poacher - the in-game description is pretty accurate to be fair, but there are situations in matches where the Poacher gets the ball and there is no support, in this scenario, he can be very good at keeping possession. I do not play a Poacher if my tactic requires someone expected to play with his back to goal, receive the ball from deep and hold up play. But that situation sometimes occurs regardless.

The in-game description of players like Owen and  Defoe, I think, would be more of an AF - using their pace to get behind the defence and pushing the Offside Trap, attacking the space. 

Like Rashidi said, it is an under-appreciated role in the game - I have had success with loan Poachers in certain situations  which was the point of my original post on the subject. By suggesting it totally defies football logic is like saying a Centre Back's role is to defend, in-game description it says to defend, but mine keeps scoring with headers - illogical?  Just because it is not selectable in the PIs, doesn't mean the player will never do it - it's just something I have noticed with a Poacher that finds himself isolated with the ball.

So I wasn't trying to cause 'unnecessary confusion', and apologise if I have done, but most of my opposition must have serious defending issues as most of my tactics feature one striker up front and I don't have too many issues scoring. 

But this is a game about a game, so we all play i the way we see fit and enjoy it - if we don't try things we never learn.

 

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20 hours ago, mortiscausa said:

Pochares and AFs in lone forward formations aren't a problem and isolation is something that people are after(so sutructured set ups) couse of how easy is to exploit balls over the top and early crosses in this ME with pacey strikers. In fact the more AFs and Poachers the better add one DLFs to the mixture and there you have it. Or don't even bother with that and use 3 AFs :) 

I'm the person who was using 41221 with DLFs and F9 religiously and the moment I thought that balls over the top and early crosses might be op I changed ideas and started to create tactics which exploit it and my conclusion is that it's way easier and a lot more effective. 

They are only good when you play with striker who drops deep. 

When you look at forums and people struggling with the tactics it's dominated by 41221s with lone striker who drops

I hear you, it's unfortunate that the game rewards tactical setups which would be detrimental in real football. Hopefully, this is something that is looked at for FM19 although it does sound like a massive undertaking in order to make the defenders behave more realistically.

12 hours ago, Snorks said:

What you are describing there is what I see as an Advanced Forward in the game, playing off the shoulder of the last defender, and using pace and anticipation to get behind the defender for balls played into that space.

I think you may have taken my post literally about the Poacher - the in-game description is pretty accurate to be fair, but there are situations in matches where the Poacher gets the ball and there is no support, in this scenario, he can be very good at keeping possession. I do not play a Poacher if my tactic requires someone expected to play with his back to goal, receive the ball from deep and hold up play. But that situation sometimes occurs regardless.

The in-game description of players like Owen and  Defoe, I think, would be more of an AF - using their pace to get behind the defence and pushing the Offside Trap, attacking the space. 

Like Rashidi said, it is an under-appreciated role in the game - I have had success with loan Poachers in certain situations  which was the point of my original post on the subject. By suggesting it totally defies football logic is like saying a Centre Back's role is to defend, in-game description it says to defend, but mine keeps scoring with headers - illogical?  Just because it is not selectable in the PIs, doesn't mean the player will never do it - it's just something I have noticed with a Poacher that finds himself isolated with the ball.

So I wasn't trying to cause 'unnecessary confusion', and apologise if I have done, but most of my opposition must have serious defending issues as most of my tactics feature one striker up front and I don't have too many issues scoring. 

But this is a game about a game, so we all play i the way we see fit and enjoy it - if we don't try things we never learn.

7

In my view, the Advanced Forward and Poacher are very similar roles except that the AF is a more technically gifted version of a Poacher. The AF is allowed more freedom to find spaces (Move Into Channels) and Run at defenders (Dribble More) whereas the Poacher is more restricted and focused on their job of scoring.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that a Poacher should just play his role and do nothing else but the amount of times he should deviate from his role should be small. As a lone forward the tendency will be for him to deviate more and more from his role due to his isolation and need to hold up the ball and wait for support.

It's subjective as to whether Owen & Defoe were pure Poachers, I concede that but Inzaghi definitely was, another would have been Van Nistelrooy, Lineker also springs to mind.

I disagree with your comparison as I don't think they are the same. I would never say that central defenders scoring goals from headers is illogical as not only does that happen IRL but in a set piece situation the centre back's role isn't to defend.

If you watch a match IRL and see a player isolated they don't tend to do well. Having a Poacher as a lone forward encourages him to be isolated and as a result, he should perform worse which would be in line with what would happen in RL. The reason why I stated that it was against footballing logic is that it seems in this ME that isolation is proving to be beneficial in some cases. 

When I mentioned about the confusion I wasn't referring to you but the game. I'm also not questioning whether having a Poacher/Advanced Forward up front as a lone forward is effective as you and others in this thread have shown that it is. What I was questioning is whether that should be the case.  

I guess my problem is that I'm trying to offer help to the OP based on what I see working in a real-life game of football and trying to translate that into the tactical creator which puts me at odds with FM as they tend to operate by completely different rules.

I agree with your last sentence and that players should be free to enjoy the game in whatever form they can.

 

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9 hours ago, pheelf said:

 

I guess my problem is that I'm trying to offer help to the OP based on what I see working in a real-life game of football and trying to translate that into the tactical creator which puts me at odds with FM as they tend to operate by completely different rules.

 

 

Can agree with that wholeheartedly - it is often about re-learning what we already know, but differently with this game. 

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20 hours ago, pheelf said:

I hear you, it's unfortunate that the game rewards tactical setups which would be detrimental in real football. Hopefully, this is something that is looked at for FM19 although it does sound like a massive undertaking in order to make the defenders behave more realistically.

In my view, the Advanced Forward and Poacher are very similar roles except that the AF is a more technically gifted version of a Poacher. The AF is allowed more freedom to find spaces (Move Into Channels) and Run at defenders (Dribble More) whereas the Poacher is more restricted and focused on their job of scoring.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that a Poacher should just play his role and do nothing else but the amount of times he should deviate from his role should be small. As a lone forward the tendency will be for him to deviate more and more from his role due to his isolation and need to hold up the ball and wait for support.

It's subjective as to whether Owen & Defoe were pure Poachers, I concede that but Inzaghi definitely was, another would have been Van Nistelrooy, Lineker also springs to mind.

I disagree with your comparison as I don't think they are the same. I would never say that central defenders scoring goals from headers is illogical as not only does that happen IRL but in a set piece situation the centre back's role isn't to defend.

If you watch a match IRL and see a player isolated they don't tend to do well. Having a Poacher as a lone forward encourages him to be isolated and as a result, he should perform worse which would be in line with what would happen in RL. The reason why I stated that it was against footballing logic is that it seems in this ME that isolation is proving to be beneficial in some cases. 

When I mentioned about the confusion I wasn't referring to you but the game. I'm also not questioning whether having a Poacher/Advanced Forward up front as a lone forward is effective as you and others in this thread have shown that it is. What I was questioning is whether that should be the case.  

I guess my problem is that I'm trying to offer help to the OP based on what I see working in a real-life game of football and trying to translate that into the tactical creator which puts me at odds with FM as they tend to operate by completely different rules.

I agree with your last sentence and that players should be free to enjoy the game in whatever form they can.

 

You're not far wrong, the AF is a technically more demanding role than the Poacher. Funny thing about this game is that it is the sum of its parts. And, depending on the situation in the game, you could influence how certain players play which was the intention of the development team. For example:

Say you are playing a 4123 with a Poacher upfront on his own. Now personally I do think this is a bad option. The lone striker needs to have more about him and the Poacher well he is simple role that will try and stay in the box, sometimes he will drift wide but its not something you can depend on. What you can depend on, is the chance that he won't try and pass the ball to anyone in front of him unless its a simple pass to someone who is running in front of him, which is kinda hard when he is the furthest forward in this system. It can happen under certain circumstances, and for that to happen and make the poacher play well, one will need to get more players in the half, and you need to camp. So this becomes the sum of its parts to get the best out of the Poacher.

The Advanced Forward is also a poor choice if you want him to be the kind of player who brings others into play. He has one of the most aggressive mentalities of any frontman, and he is expected to anticipate through passes or balls into space, use his acceleration to get behind the last man and then dribble onto and try and finish off chances. Since he has little to no time to control the ball, he is expected to take it down well with his first touch, and shift the ball quickly to his favoured foot for shots at goal> How do we know all this?

1196779027_ScreenShot2018-06-13at2_55_53PM.thumb.png.b0eeabe0e3ee1ce29c61a22be1e51a1c.png

The game tells us all those things, but we need to infer these from the attributes that are deemed important in his development. This makes the AF a good option when you want to play a game where there are spaces to explore, where the opposition may be taking a higher line or against a side that has a slow defence. In a 4123 for example, I could use the AF in games where I am the underdog, where I expect the AI to attack me relentlessly. Here the best way to use him would be to create situations which could suit him. Whether or not I get him to play well will not be a function of his attributes per se, it will be how I integrate a player into a system where there are players working to create chances for him. My most successful 4123 systems have play makers on one side where they hold the ball up, with the ability to do a diagonal pass into space for a winger to send a surging cross or a pass into space for an AF to attack.

The poacher on the other hand is a much simpler role, without any modifications, he will play a simple role to stay around the box. Here we have a role that is not demanding in terms of requiring more CA. In terms of mentality he is one of the lesser aggressive roles, only the DF and the DLF, I think are lower in terms of mentality ( I might be wrong, but I think not). Here we have a player who is not expected to think. He doesn't need to worry about whether he needs to dribble or run at the defence. In fact he is specifically prevented from dribbling more, and because he is not expected to decide things, this is left to others around him. So when in doubt he will either striker early cos he has no option, or he will pass the ball onto someone else. Players with good off the ball will become good pivots for their sides because of the natural inclination not to run at defences. 

The natural inclination of most people in this game is to associate these roles with actual players, which while I think works in some cases, the ability to morph these roles with player traits and specific development is more interesting. So you could end up making systems where the Poacher becomes a fantastic pivot in the final third where he works with a DLF(S) or even a TQ and an AF. The challenge is actually trying to make the various roles in the game work as a unit. 

A poacher as a lone forward does get isolated, depending on the system you are playing. I could make a 4123 where my Poacher isn't isolated, where he is playing as part of an overall unit. We need to remember this game isn't about roles specifically its about how we mesh the various elements into one cohesive system.

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Here are my home and away tactics now, after a few games spent closely following the patterns of play. I've just enjoyed a spectacular victory at Juventus to go top of the table.

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 23.36.42.png

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 23.36.01.png

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 23.34.58.png

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 23.33.23.png

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23 hours ago, stevecummins78 said:

Here are my home and away tactics now, after a few games spent closely following the patterns of play. I've just enjoyed a spectacular victory at Juventus to go top of the table.

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 23.36.42.png

Take that - save the game....save it now!:hammer:

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On 06/06/2018 at 10:58, felley said:

I've kept up with this post and it really does seem like you expect an awful lot. The feeling I get is that you are expecting to "crack" the game with one tactic that will win against any opposition in any circumstance.

My advice would be to stick with one of the (too) many versions of your 4-1-2-3 and play it for several games so you can learn how it works, as you really don't seem to know what you want. Once you have a decent sample size (3-5 games), take the time to look at your tactic in depth and post back here so people can help you. Hopefully through this process you'll gain a better understanding and learn that the small tweaks here and there will be what allows you to put together a good run of wins/draws as opposed to constantly changing roles/instructuions/mentality/shape in the hope that something will stick.

Results since Napoli defeat...think I have this worked out now! 

Screen Shot 2018-06-17 at 00.11.11.png

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48 minutes ago, stevecummins78 said:

Results since Napoli defeat...think I have this worked out now! 

Screen Shot 2018-06-17 at 00.11.11.png

Where is the 'Guard against complacency' button on this forum?

Well done stevecummings, but don't ever think you have it 'worked out' lol. 

Very good set of results there.

 

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