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westy8chimp

Leverkusen continued...Ginga Style

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Brief update on current situation and past seasons

As part of Herne's challenge #2 I started up a Leverkusen save. A team I've never been, in a league I hadn't played for a decade or so.

The squad DNA on day 1 was very much an industrious bunch with strong personalities & high work rate. What they lacked in pace and excitement (Bailey aside), they made up with in other areas. Packed with good young talent, i was pleased to find a strong team with good potential.

Season one: I based a plan on that hard work, and to make up for the lack of pace I had a solid 4123 formation using a patient slow build up. There were difficulties and frustrations at times, but we finished a solid 3rd (pretty much in line with expectation).

Season two: kept things simple - just added some pace and signed a budget striker (Lapadula) to add some goals to the side. We came joint 1st :D well 2nd, lost out on the title on goal difference.

The full thread with details on my two seasons - https://community.sigames.com/topic/433707-leverkusen-challenge-2/

Summary - with so many avid FMers playing LLM saves I feel like a fool for using the term 'shoestring' but considering the level of club I'm at, I've operated with net gains in the transfer market and still don't have a big budget for season 3. I enjoyed the challenge (playing without TI and PI) but want to take a shift in my save, as it is probably the last on FM18 for me.

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Ginga Style

A style of football I've always been fascinated in - I've recently had my inspiration towards Ginga reignited. Two major factors - Ronaldo bicycle kick vs Juventus and Bale bicycle kick vs Liverpool in the Champions League semi final and final respectively -> lead me to re-watch the fabulous (if a little cheesy) 'Pele: Birth of a Legend'

The film is based around Pele's rise in football with Santos and the national side. surrounded with ethnic racial and class tones, culminating in the 1958 world cup. Brazils previous embarrassments (in particular 1950) had lead to a belief they had to copy European traditions and footballing styles to the detriment of self expression and skilful football.

What happened seemed like a Hollywood story, you'd be forgiven for thinking the film was fiction, Pele a 17yr old black player alongside the mightily impressive Garrincha and Vava took the world cup by storm and became the first multiracial world cup winning side. They did it with all the style and panache associated with Brazilian culture....

What is Ginga?

Origination (taken from the film so may upset some historians if not entirely factual :D ):

"It is primitive, but it has a long and rich history... It all started at the beginning of the 16th century... The Portuguese arrived in Brazil with African slaves. But the African's will was strong, and many escaped to the jungle. To protect themselves, the run away slaves called upon the ginga, the foundation of Capoeira, the martial art of war. When slavery was finally abolished, the capoeiraistas came out of the jungle, only to find that capoeira was outlawed throughout the land. They saw football to be the perfect way to practice ginga without being arrested. It was the ultimate form of ginga. And before long the ginga evolved, adapted, until it was no longer just ours, but all Brazilians."

Another good description:

"In Brazil, football is a way of life and is played and expressed in a form that has produced a record 5 World Cup championships. It is called Ginga and is known for its trickery, fast flowing, attacking style of play and considered a reflection of the country’s multiracial society. Brazil’s unique style is characterized by…creativity, swing…various rhythms and choreographies."

How will/can I incorporate 'Ginga' into my FM save?

The first thing I'd like to clarify is that anything I hope to achieve is loosely based on Ginga traits. It is not going to be a tactical, nor player, replication of Brazil or the 1958 side.

The core principles of Ginga can be extracted in FM terms through; attributes, PPMs, TIs & PIs. Ginga is about;

  • giving players freedom with the ball to express themselves
  • fast flowing attacking football
  • flair, technique, agility (it links to Brazils culture of Samba dancing and rhythmic martial arts)
  • performing the unexpected, unorthodox

I will try, within FMs TC limitations to incorporate as man of these aspects into my Leverkusen side, through the personnel I bring in, the training I assign (including PPMs), the formation and tactical instructions I employ.

 

Edited by westy8chimp

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Attributes I've identified as important

Band one is obvious (to me) and mentioned above; Flair, technique, agility.

Flair - the likelihood of trying something risky and unexpected

Technique - ability to pull off more difficult skills

Agility - ability to turn and shift position quickly

After that my focus turns to; first touch, dribbling, vision, balance, acceleration, off the ball, anticipation, passing

Flair and agility may encourage a brave run, they then need the dribbling skill to pull it off. Likewise flair and technique may encourage a risky long range pass so I need the receiver to have good movement anticipation and touch etc. But the fundamental driving force is to encourage expression and the spectacular. That starts with the core 3 attributes.

PPMS

Just some initial thoughts of PPMs I may want scattered through my team. (I'll focus on attacking in terms of attributes and PPMs for now, defence notes will be a footer)

  • knock ball past opponent
  • run with ball often (centre, left, right depending positional)
  • Comes deep to get ball, dictates tempo, likes to switch ball to other flank, tries long range passes, tries killer balls, plays one twos, dictates tempo (all relate to my RPM/Volante)
  • overhead kicks, lobs keeper, rounds keeper (for goalscorers to encourage skilful finishes)
  • curls the ball (nice on the eye, doesn't seem to be a trainable PPM so just a bonus if any transfer targets have it)

Squad analysis of Ginga traits - pre window

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Here is a squad view with some of the key attributes. As you will see from my transfer window, there was quite a hectic turn around to address my lack of creative attributes. Some senior casualties were victim of a brutal summer in Leverkusen.

Initial player search

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A couple of targets identified. But also worth noting that on my budget there are very few players out there that are ideal to suit my new needs. This could turn out to be a work-in-progress of a few seasons, not an immediate transformation into Brazil!

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Summer transfer activity

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Firstly I'd like to mention some notable outgoings. I'm sure if there are any Leverkusen fans or FM purists out there they are ready to burn me alive when seeing the sales I've made. Volland & the Bender bros in particular have superb mental attributes and great personalities. Selling these guys is testament to how serious I am investing in a new philosophy. Unfortunately I didn't take screen grabs of their attribute overview, but as you can imagine, particularly the Benders, scored very low in terms of flair, technique and agility.

Another notable sale is Lapadulla. Only brought in last year to solve my goal crisis, he cost £4m and scored 25 goals. He had the makings of being a cult hero, and must have been shocked and angry when his agent called him to say he'd been transfer listed. He did a great job and turned a profit for me, what more can I say but thanks for his service and he is an unjust victim of a savage summer regime.

Also worth noting (mini spoiler about my tactic to follow) - I've sold Diekemeir and loaned out Wendel, Jedvaj and Henrichs. This leaves me with no fullbacks. I didn't sell them in case I need to revert in January or next season. Another nod to my full buy in to the new philosophy and tactic.

New signings - all have an element of flair, technique and agility. Ndombele was the man I really wanted, as you can see from his transfer fee, the others were all I could afford that met the criteria. I'll expand or reiterate later when I talk about my limitations and weaknesses... I simply didn't have the reputational pull nor the budget to attract any worldclass flair players.

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Post window attribute analysis

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Looking at the averages, on my not so glamorous spreadsheet, you will see what I mean about not attracting elite flair players. but I'm relatively happy as a startng point that my midfielders and attackers average around the 14/15 mark in all the attributes I highlighted as key to 'Ginga style'.

I've highlighted a couple more players that could become transfer victims in January. would pain me to lose Petagna and Duncan as they are two of my regular go to players. Petagna is 23 with 'driven' personality so a potential great tutor for a decade. I'm going to see how his attributes come along. He isn't far off - I have him training on agility and overhead kicks ppm.

Akkaynak has great PPMs and is still young and improving quickly - I have no concerns that in the next few seasons he will be the epitome of a Ginga style RPM.

Arthur could be inspirational looking at his attributes, and his description of 'midfield entertainer' fits so well with the Ginga syle. I really hope he can be the leader of the side - he dictates tempo, comes deep to get the ball etc. Excited to pair him with new signing Ndombele as they glue the side together in this new era.

In terms of league comparison data - the transfer window has seen a meteoric rise in our flair, vision, dribbling, technique and first touch. Anticipation, off the ball and other technical attributes also look good. I'm pleased with where we are in terms of comparative date ... I still have the big caveat and nagging doubt that whilst these are good for the league average... my players don't have a lot of 18,19 or 20s ... so will FM recognise these my boys as flair, technical players?

 

Training

Just realised I didn't take any screen shots, so just a quick note on training.

I've taken over individual training (sorry again to the purists, I tend to leave all training to my asst. and just intervene in special occasions using the 'take over for this month only' on an individual basis. I do make full use of tutoring and PPMs however) .

I've set all my players to a useful PPM, where possible (not tutoring or being tutored) from the list mentioned earlier. And individual training I've set them all to their role and in a lot of cases improving one of the key attributes mentioned in the topic

 

Edited by westy8chimp

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Tactics

For the sake of showing my thought process i'll include tactic version 1.0. But remember a ball hasn't yet been kicked and I've since flogged all my full backs, so this was a tactic never used.

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Version 2.0

I quickly changed idea, I want quick attacking free flowing football. To add flair I've also replaced a defender for another AM. This gives me more chance to top-end my squad with attacking players and an extra body for the RPM to ping passes to.

The tactic isn't built to win  (though nor is it built to lose) but my primary focus is exciting attacking football.

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I have some things to finalise and add clarity to my thought - do I use TI to run at defence or PI to dribble more? Do I use stuck in TI or tackle harder PI? Is the use of structured shape going to take away expressive emphasis?

Roles:

CBs all on defend. I'll add a footnote on defensive behaviour at the bottom of this thread.

RPM: to play fast flowing attacking football, but attractive also, I need someone to bridge the defence and attack, to prevent hoofball. The RPM is a glamorous all action role and as mentioned in player assessment Arthur is the man to do it. His PPMs really help and suit the role in this formation

Volante: If I'm taking inspiration from Brazilian style... I've got to use a classic Brazilian role. Will it link to Ginga syle? Ndombele has the necessary stats and again it's all action.

WM - I wanted two wingers, but with weakness in the middle and Brandt occupying the role I'm going with WM, PI to dribble more and more risky passes. Support role to work with the RPM.

W - winger on the right wing. I said this wasn't about emulating Brazil 1958 ... but in some regards i'm desperate for Bailey to be my Garrincha. Take players on with quick mazy dribbles and supply the front 3.

AMC - set to roam position, this is most likely to be Havertz. support role to offer some assistance in the middle of the park. He has the vision and other Ginga attributes to come up with a few creative tricks, I hope.

TQ - the last role I decided on when removing full backs. If I want expression - surely this role fits the bill. Licence to roam and do as he pleases, this could be my Pele (or budget Pele as it's likely to be free transfer Munir or 7m Vela).

CF - comes with dribbling and risky passes, seems like the right role but may be changed.

TI:

(I can see @herne79 reading the thread, apologies in advance, this thread started in line with your challenge to reduce TI... I now have a plethora of them ticked)

Play out of defence - credit @PMLF (I turned to the Brazil researcher and fountain of knowledge when I'd decided to talk Ginga - again apologies to historical or tactical inaccuracies - I've tried to cover myself by clarifying this isn't tactical replication nor true Ginga, just a hope to create exciting expressive football!). PMLF suggested I need short passing, and I agree in real life terms, I was a little worried how it might play out in my tactic, so for now I've stuck with mixed. I have however, added the POD instruction which goes some way to shorten the passing range. I also want to make sure my CBs are encouraged to channel through the RPM and Volante.

Get Stuck in - mention in footnote

Use tighter marking - mention in footnote

Be more expressive - selecting this is obvious, but I would like to say I've never used it before and not entirely sure what behaviours it relates to. Does it conflict with structured approach? Does it mean freedom to ignore me? Or, hopefully yes, does it mean play with more expression?

Prevent GK short distribution - hopefully encourage the AI to play long and turn over possession more often. I want the ball!

Defending

I've not written anything on defenders or defending for now. Ginga is about style, flair, rhythm and applies to on the ball behaviours. It cannot apply to defenders. So again with help/confirmation from @PMLF I've just selected a few typical characteristics of strong Brazilian defenders.

Attributes - strength, positioning, concentration, tackling, marking, heading

PPMS - mark tightly, dive into tackles. (Dive into tackles is something I usually see as negative. Pressing and forcing turnover of possession is far better in the modern game than winning the ball via a tackle. But the Brazil way has been physical, big tackles and tight marking (dare I say roughing up of the opposition).

PI/TI - tighter marking, hard tackling, get stuck in.

One final note on defending in terms of my formation - with hard tackling and attacking mentality I fully anticipate a lot of bookings and probably sending's off. My addition of 2 AMs allows me to cope with a red card without a drastic in game overhaul of formation. Think of a 4123 or 4231, if you get a red card who can you afford to lose without any other changes? No-one. In my 343/361 I think I can cope defensively and provide attacking threat once one (or in extreme circumstances) two of my AMs are replaced. Defensively i'll still have my back 3 with 2 anchors and in attack i'll still have my attacking wingers and striker.

I think it's really important to have a fall back plan for what happens if you get a red card, or injury after you've used subs.

Expectations:

In all honesty I think the formation is too attacking and weak down the flanks. I do think there should be goals in the side though and whilst there's a real possibility of falling flat on my face and getting the sack, I'd like to think a top 4 finish is still a realistic outcome. I also think the players I have at my disposal probably aren't ready yet. I need a couple of elite flair players down the line, and I need time for the training and PPMs to kick in... not to mention the overhaul has cost me in terms of team gel/dynamics.

Hopes:

With great risk comes high hopes. I'd love to excite the fans on the way to a title, but most of all I hope to see some skilful dribbles, rabonas, lobs,

AND THE HOLY GRAIL ...

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Before I can update on my save and upload some glorious highlights of my own... satiate your appetite on this;

Pele did it 50 years ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYokNMEgRvw

Overhead kicks of 2018: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRxZifyTOQ8

 

 

 

Edited by westy8chimp

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4 hours ago, herne79 said:

@westy8chimp It's an old thread but you may find it interesting for what you're working towards https://community.sigames.com/topic/178600-creativity-and-flair/.

Just gave a brief glance, will read properly after lunch meetings permitting. I nearly put vision in my top category (in the same way SFraser used creativity), I probably should have. Luckily it was in my second bracket and I do sit on top in league comparison for vision (albeit with avg just below 15 where Fraser had minimum in squad of 16 :D ). This is where I think I could come a cropper - being top of the pile makes me the most creative side, but being best of a bad bunch doesn't mean I'll be able to pull off any genius. Hopefully my side show glimpses though, certainly at an individual level there are a couple of players capable of magic. There is also scope to grow, I hope to get a good few more seasons in to have a real go.

 

-----------------

E: Yes, a really interesting read. Crikey that TC brings back some memories! He had a few more stars to play around with but I certainly feel Arthur and Ndombele could get in his 2010 side  some subtle variances in his approach but a lot of similarities too. Sandro was such a beast back then... I signed him on every save for a good few FM editions... however wrong FM was about Sandro, they got it right with world beating wonderkid Jonjo Shelvey #shelveyforengland

Edited by westy8chimp

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Good read this, @westy8chimp. I'll be following the thread. 

Your signings look like some fun players to work with. A healthy dose of flair!

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Interesting stuff

I really like the signings...not so sure on the tactic. The 2 DM's have to be excellent defensively and the 2 side central defenders definitely need acceleration (as well as being overall very solid defenders). I also think Control/Fluid would be suitable for what you're trying to achieve. 

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3 hours ago, NabsKebabs said:

Interesting stuff

I really like the signings...not so sure on the tactic. The 2 DM's have to be excellent defensively and the 2 side central defenders definitely need acceleration (as well as being overall very solid defenders). I also think Control/Fluid would be suitable for what you're trying to achieve. 

Im doing another update from work today... Only a few games in but there was some more exciting late transfer deals. 

Regarding the tactic... My primary objective is getting as many flair players on the ball as possible... My cbs have very low flair (2 of them have 1 for that attribute) so ive gone for structured to keep them safe and simple... The POD instruction is the element that should stop them hoofing it and have a little more interest in combining with the DMs. 

Its early days... I didnt put a great deal of thought into the tactic, the focus was on getting a better attribute mix and sorting out the training for the task at hand. I agree the weakness is my DMs (seen already in first two games that they are all over the pitch) but i think their advantage outweighs the negatives. They allow me to get as many as 7 players in and around the box or 'golden zone' as many Rashidi fans will appreciate. 

I like the high line, high press, high tempo that comes with attacking in line with the free flowing Ginga style. Its not about possession, control or safety... Its about making stuff happen on the ball. Classic Ginga would incorporate more teamwork and shorter passing... But FM comes up a little short in terms of individual skill moves on the ball... So my flair and magic is going to be from the daring runs and direct passes.

Tldr: Your advice is absolutely correct in terms of creating a better FM tactic... But thats not my main goal this season. 

E: transition important here too. Arthur has PPM to come deep for the ball... He has playmaker role so attracts the ball... He also has dictates tempo PPM... Good vision passing and flair. In theory (its too early for any tactical analysis) he should drop deep and receive the ball from my cbs and then make the best judgement as to which tempo to play at... Attacking mentality would encourage more direct faster tempo... But ive given my players plenty of freedom (be more expressive) to make the right calls. 

If arthur plays it direct and quickly... His (and ndombele) next movement in the transition largely depends on whether or not the attacking receivers win and keep the ball. If they win the ball my dms would begin to advance (but still into support positions behind the ball). Most of my attackers are then asked to make a run (supplemented by ppms pi ti). If they beat their man thats when my dms fully transition to risky advanced positions and im left exposed (tho the A. I will have retreated into defensive transition)... If my attacker loses the ball when making the first dribble or risky pass then arthur and ndombele should still be in reasonably good defensive shape. 

Ill be punished more by attacking teams... But considering i came 2nd last year i anticipate most sides being cautious. 

Edited by westy8chimp

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Final transfer activity

I posted my transfers prematurely - I had thought all activity had ceased but then I had £30m in my pocket eager to escape and my scouts found a couple of nice youngsters that fit the bill. Add on top of that when I prepared my squad for the first game of the season I realised I was short of cover for Brandt and Bailey.

Added two good young players ... not as young as I'd like considering their current attributes and the need to get them up to speed quickly, but enough potential to give me confidence they can be great assets in the next few seasons

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Then came the Julian Brandt saga. He had come to me at the end of the previous season saying he had dreamt of playing for Bayern. I talked him out of it and he was happy. Then came bid after bid from RBL and Dortmund ... but still happy. Until eventually Bayern caught the scent and like a shark came in for the kill.

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Initial bids were convoluted with clauses which I don't like. Eventually managed to get £67m cash in hand... really sad to see Brandt go but £67m was at least a fair price.

I used that money to find someone who better fits my philosophy and is also young. For £27m and lower wage than Brandt I was able to bring in an unhappy Malcolm.

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Final transfer window shows another season in net gains;

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First couple of games

I only plan to update league progress every few months or so.

I was also hoping to start uploading videos to help illustrate the risky flair moves my side will (hopefully create), but had technical difficulties producing the video (saved to my youtube channel as blank screens... user error I suspect!)

That said, I was excited to get stuck in, and had such a good opening game I thought I'd show a couple of the moves.

We faced a highly structured defensive team - bingo... rubbed my hands with glee at the sight of their deep line and even deeper full backs (hello Golden Zone). Was also pleased to see my man Jedvaj in the lineup for Hamburg - the mole has infiltrated :D 

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 We won the game 4-0, blitzed them early doors. Not sure if they changed formation at HT or whether it was just holiday mode for my lads, but it was a quiet second half.

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First goal was a grubby set piece. 4th goal was Ben Yedder closing down well (Prevent GK distribution)

Goals 2 and 3 were very nice though. Early signs of Ginga? Coincidental product of general good play and bad AI formation? Too early to say, but really pleasing none the less.

For goal number 2:

Brandt cuts in from the WM(l) position, feeds a fairly simple pass to Havertz, but note it was a progressive pass ... where the safer option was back towards the support playmaker Arthur. Havertz has a lovely first touch, side steps and goes past his man, then feeds the risky through ball into space in the box. Bailey runs past his marker to receive the pass... then has good options in the box, particularly a low cross to far post, but decides to attack the keeper with a dribble and finish at the near post.

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For goal number 3:

I didn't break the move down with screen shots as I was hoping to upload the video of this one. But the map of the linked events shows you all you need to know. This was a very quick pass and move team goal, in tight spaces with progressive passing.

Ndombele, Kagawa, Havertz all involved, then again it is the tricky Bailey who plays a neat 1-2 to get the that near post angle vs the keeper. This time he does play the low cross/through ball to the far post for Brandt to tap in.

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We also won our first away league game 2-0. And started with a simple 2-0 win in the cup (sticking again to using my kids and reserves in cup and euro competitions).

Looking ahead I was hoping to see a favourable fixture list to help me gather momentum and morale... but the next month or so look quite tricky, with several tough away games, including a trip to the Bernabeu.

Note on friendlies... I neither arrange nor manage them. Agree with other comments in another recent post that ideally you want to challenge yourself and sort your tactic out, then play a couple of easy games for morale... I'm just lazy and only care that my players get some match fitness.

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Look forward to updating again after 10-20 games. Hopefully I've learned how to produce video highlights by then :D 

Edited by westy8chimp

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I like how you're working through things with a plan and a great lesson which can help many.  A good piece of business for Brandt/Malcom and the next 3 games against Schalke, Real Madrid and Borussia M (I'm not typing that name in full) should be interesting.

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4 minutes ago, herne79 said:

I like how you're working through things with a plan and a great lesson which can help many.  A good piece of business for Brandt/Malcom and the next 3 games against Schalke, Real Madrid and Borussia M (I'm not typing that name in full) should be interesting.

I'll take a W, L, D, D, W, W, D out of that run visible on screen.

What I like and have only just noticed as I posted the screen shots... I signed Tilman 23/7 and took the screen shot of him on 15/8 ...just in that time circa 3 weeks look at his training :D he could be better than Brandt in no time if he carries on like that.

Could be an element of  'Moneyball' (The Art of Winning an Unfair Game) in this thread as well as Ginga. I am operating on much less £££ than Bayern (signed Griezmann for £89m) & Dortmund (signed Firminho for £81m). I think RBL are also spending big. Not only from the money point of view but I'm also highlighting specific traits and skills to supplement my side, rather than overall player ability, reputation or records.

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On 06/06/2018 at 13:21, herne79 said:

@westy8chimp It's an old thread but you may find it interesting for what you're working towards https://community.sigames.com/topic/178600-creativity-and-flair/.

I've read this thread, 

 

is it still: flair = risk taking?

Or is it now: flair = creativity, and (former) creativity = (today's) vision?

 

If flair still affects risk taking, that would be great, you could moderate risk on a player basis, not only on team basis (mentality + team shape).

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3 minutes ago, westy8chimp said:

I'm also highlighting specific traits and skills to supplement my side, rather than overall player ability, reputation or records.

Spot on :thup:.

2 minutes ago, charisma_charisma said:

is it still: flair = risk taking?

Or is it now: flair = creativity, and (former) creativity = (today's) vision?

In very general terms, just about everything in the entire game is about risk.

As westy says above:

On ‎06‎/‎06‎/‎2018 at 11:06, westy8chimp said:

Flair - the likelihood of trying something risky and unexpected

Re. the former "Creativity" attribute, I wasn't playing the game back then so someone longer in the tooth feel free to correct me, but pretty sure it's now the rebadged "Vision".

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3 minutes ago, herne79 said:

Re. the former "Creativity" attribute, I wasn't playing the game back then so someone longer in the tooth feel free to correct me, but pretty sure it's now the rebadged "Vision".

Bang on the money.

"Vision" makes much more sense too as it controls the likelihood of a player seeing an option/passing possibility.

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1 minute ago, herne79 said:

Re. the former "Creativity" attribute, I wasn't playing the game back then so someone longer in the tooth feel free to correct me, but pretty sure it's now the rebadged "Vision".

I believe this is the case creativity then and vision now are the same.

'The ability to see all the options available'. SFraser talked about it very eloquently - it's not ability to play a pass, just to see it. Someone can have 20 in passing and 1 for vision and will be great at passing the ball to the safe short option... a player can have vision 20 but passing 1 ... will see the through ball to striker but hit it at Mrs Miggins in row Z.

The ultimate player has vision and passing. Technique is nice to throw in the mix to add some artistry and successfully complete passes that may not have been on i.e. curl it round a defender or chip it over a defender.

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Yes, I'm pretty certain that (former) creativity = (today's) vision. In SFRASER's thread creativity was referred to as the ability to see available options, so yeah.

 

The question is whether flair is an attribute that affects risk taking today as significantly as it - according to the thread - did in 2010?

This is the "official" definition of flair (https://community.sigames.com/manual/football-manager-2018/players-r167/):

A natural talent for the creative and occasional unpredictability. A player with a lot of Flair will be one of the key attacking components in any team but at the same time may need tactical restraint to get the best out of him. Flair and Vision work well together.

So it talks about unpredictability and a possible need for tactical restraint - what I can read from that is that a player with high flair will deviate from tactical instruction more (even if you don't play n fluid + "be more expressive" TI + use him in a playmaker role).

One could argue unpredictability = risk, but it's not always the case...

 

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1 hour ago, charisma_charisma said:

Yes, I'm pretty certain that (former) creativity = (today's) vision. In SFRASER's thread creativity was referred to as the ability to see available options, so yeah.

 

The question is whether flair is an attribute that affects risk taking today as significantly as it - according to the thread - did in 2010?

This is the "official" definition of flair (https://community.sigames.com/manual/football-manager-2018/players-r167/):

A natural talent for the creative and occasional unpredictability. A player with a lot of Flair will be one of the key attacking components in any team but at the same time may need tactical restraint to get the best out of him. Flair and Vision work well together.

So it talks about unpredictability and a possible need for tactical restraint - what I can read from that is that a player with high flair will deviate from tactical instruction more (even if you don't play n fluid + "be more expressive" TI + use him in a playmaker role).

One could argue unpredictability = risk, but it's not always the case...

 

it's certainly my belief, based on observation, experience etc. I don't know for sure.

The fact even the modern description says it pairs well with vision tells me it lends itself to the risky pass. As discussed, high vision is the ability to see options others cant, so implies an unexpected or risky avenue.

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Mid-season update:

I would have liked to present a series of glamorous videos at this stage showing Garrincha style dribbles, Ronaldinho-esque skills & and overhead kicks reminiscent of Pele. However, technological issues and the fact that none of those things has really been happening yet have put pay to that.

There are a few anomalies to talk about, but it's not all bad news.

League Results & Table

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We are top of the league and for once I go into the second half of the season in a very good position. You will see from the recent form however, I've lost 2 of the last 5 whilst my nearest rivals are all unbeaten in 5 (or more).

Looking at the results the first anomaly to mention is two fold; the lack of goals scored and the lack of goals conceded.

One of the principles of Ginga football is high scoring games. My formation and roles should be conducive to goals at both ends. I'm both surprised and a little disappointed in equal measure by the results. 12 clean sheets in 17 games! 6 of those 0-0. Yet again RBL are squashing me like a bug in terms of goals scored.

The structured approach, high line, high press with quick strong CBs paying better dividends than I thought. Although you can see from the defeats we are vulnerable away from home.

The back to back early away defeats made me switch my Trequarista to AMC (s) this could need reversing to add to my goal tally. But whilst I'm top I'm loath to change anything.

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Those away league defeats, and as you will see below a home and away pair of defeats to Madrid, do show that I need a different tactic for the tougher matches. I need to come up with one that is still in line with the philosophy but slightly more cautious.

Europe and German Cup

Same as ever, all cup games inc. CL is a chance to keep the backup and younger players happy. Full team rotation, but this year our fortunes are a little better. We head into the New Year still in the German Cup for the first time, and with a last 16 clash with Juventus to (not) look forward to.

Nothing to really note except a good performance from my bteam to knockout Bayern who plugged their first team. And as mentioned above, the 2 losses to Madrid highlight some vulnerability to my tactics (Bale, Kane, Asensio, Ronaldo ran riot and they should have won both games by more goals)

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Stats

Ben Yedder stepping in in the same way Lapadulla was able to last season. I have an eye for a striker it seems. Other than that goals from the AMC position distinctly lacking (Kagawa has 0 off the page).

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Flair football - whilst I cant bring any footage of great overhead kick goals or a Giroud scorpion kick ... I can certainly say I've enjoyed watching the fast direct play. Lots of through balls, and maybe I'm looking for it so seeing some perception bias, but I definitely feel the added flair, vision and technique my squad owns has made a big impact. Yedder has had the most shots in the league and as a team we have created the most chances. Pair this with the fact we aren't particularly high in number of passes or pass completion, it shows the risky nature and reward of our system.

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I need to review what the meaning of a dribble is! It feels when I watch the game that my team don't shirk from a run or two. We aren't top of the division though and I need to work out how to encourage more.

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Summary

The season hasn't gone as I thought it would... I thought there would be more goals and I'd be struggling to keep up at the top of the league.

I need to create another tactic for the tough games, particularly away from home.

Tinker with roles/duty in my current setup - need more goals and more dribbles!

Petagna is on fire in the cups and has just finished learning the PPM for overhead kick, so can I engineer chances for him to score? He also likes to play with his back towards goal. Maybe I need more crosses.

Personnel - I don't need anyone in January. Ndombele broke his ankle and is coming back from 3 months out, Malcom is coming back from 2 months out with shin splints. We coped in their absence.

That said, I'm never one for a completely quiet January, and I still have plenty of Brandt money in the bank... so we will see.

 

 

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Really enjoying this thread Westy :thup:

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End of season update

My January window started with a rookie error, which became rather a fortuitous one.

I was flirting with the transfer market, as previously stated, I didn't have any immediate needs...so my heart wasn't in it. I was casually looking around for potential improvements (being top of the league and through the the second round of CL my reputation had increased and thus my pool of available talent had also increased). Again searching by Flair, Technique and Agility, I saw an unhappy Muniain score fairly high.

Does anyone else struggle with the concept of 'interact with board' in terms of them buying a player for you? I always fall into the trap of somehow deciding that clicking that button has less finality to a deal than clicking the 'confirm transfer' button on a regular deal? It's exactly the same, I clicked the button with no real desire or expectation of the board following through with the request... but they accepted without hesitation! From then on in, as far as I'm aware (trust me I looked everywhere I could think of) the deal cannot be cancelled. £23m on an OK player. Terrible decision by me, and further highlighted by the fact I could have signed Ljalic (whose contract was running out) for about £2m and I prefer him.

That said, Muniain did fit my search results and had good PPMs so it wasn't a complete disaster, just a bad decision money wise. However, Muniain scored on debut, and added valuable goals and assists from the AM position (which I'd identified as an area that needed more goals). He was more impressive than I thought he would be and was probably capable of the most Ginga-style football in my squad. Made several delightful dribbles, cut backs, through balls etc.

To keep up with my penny pinching net spend I sold an unhappy Munir for £10m to balance the books. Unusually quick turnaround, quite often you are made to pay for 12-18 months when you sign a flop, but he was out the door in just 6 months. He was dire on the pitch but considering I picked him up for free I was pleased with the business.

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Errors 2 & 3 of the second half of the season quickly followed, but weren't so fortuitous.

In line with my FM principles I continued to play the bteam in Euro and cup. They had served me well this season coming 2nd in CL group behind a far superior RM side and knocked Bayern out of the cup.

Return to form in the New Year though;

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Successes

That's about it in terms of errors.

The midseason interval highlighted a couple of requirements;

  • change of formation to encourage more goals and more dribbles
  • additional formation to be slightly more defensive for the tough/away games

In the end it was 2 birds with 1 stone. Having let go all of my fullbacks I was quite tactically restrained - limited to a back 3 there are only so many shapes you can look at without going down the avenue of gamey/exploit formations. I tinkered with a strikerless but I don't like the look of it on paper... it does seem exploitative, and also Yedder was in form and I like a goalscorer so wanted to keep him as a CF(a). So I decided on a fairly orthodox 361.

*add screenshot tonight

e: added ss

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Oops updating from work and didn't email myself a screen shot of the tactic. I will add a proper screenshot later with full TI (in case I forget any) but this is Tactic I went with.

On attacking mentality, flexible shape.

Tactic.thumb.JPG.4d09c7453c81bbadd8f3d18f62171dab.JPG

There were 0 PI

TI, from memory;

  • higher line - with a back 3 I don't want to invite the enemy deep into my territory to put crosses in with impunity, win it early or back track quickly to recover.
  • close down much more - same as above, win the ball high and early
  • prevent keeper distr. - Yedder had scored a few from nicking the ball off defenders/back passes ... adds cheap goals, and forces the early long ball which my defenders could mop up
  • mark tightly - let 'em know they are in a game. All my CBs have added PM to mark tighter. Added emphasis with the TI... let's make the opposition strikers hate every minute of playing against us, and injure a few of them whilst at it ('Westy Chimp would never send team out to hurt opposition')
  • play out of defence - prevent the early long ball and channel the build up through my flair players via the DLP (Akkaynak made the transition to key first team player in this role) -> RPM (Arthur the beast and all round action man playing further up paid more dividends).
  • express more - Ginga! Had to be chosen.
  • run at defence - -----"------

More dribbles?

Yes, we rose to top adding an extra dribble per game on average compared to first half of the season.

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More goals?

Yes, look at the schedule. First 17 games we had 12 clean sheets, with 6 1-0 wins. 2nd 17 games we managed just 5 clean sheets.

Goals scored - first 17 = 34, second 17 = 44

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Just one defeat in the second half shows that we were able to turn some defeats into draws. Although we lost a bit of home form whilst approving away.

How did we end up - if you haven't spotted from the screen shots, or guessed from the schedule... here it is. No reliance on GD this time round, (although was level points going into GW 34 after my stumble in weeks 31 & 32)

CHAMPIONS

*add screenshot - seriously what is wrong with me, didn't take a screenshot of the final table! I finished the season at 1.30am though whilst watching UFC 225 rerun.

I think we finished 77 with Dortmund behind on 74 and a bigger gap to RBL (who still scored the most by a long shot) and huge gap to Bayern who were awful, and may have ended up behind Frankfurt too.  

E: added ss

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Here is how the squad goals finished up; Ben Yedder pipping Lapadulla's record from last season and proving to be a real bargain success at £9m

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Summary

When I created the thread I knew I was asking a lot of the FM match engine. I was like a teenage virgin on his first date, full of hope and unrealistic expectations. There just aren't enough 'special moves' or skills represented. And those that are seem random rather than exponentially increased by increasing flair, technique and freedom.

Also I watched the games in 2d and only showed goals (via replay) in director view, so it's possible I missed some individual intricacies.

What I did enjoy, and mentioned here and there, is the attacking, high tempo - more through balls (Yedder thrived), more dribbles, quick passing triangles etc. So certainly an element of Ginga to my league winning side.  

Ultimately the match engine isn't ready for this, so I need to move the goalposts again in terms of this save.

what next?

I haven't made my mind up. I want to stick with the attacking style, I've got a very strong set of midfielders, so will probably stick with the 361. to keep it interesting though I have to have an ultimate goal (or more).

Winning the champions league is obviously the next big goalpost, but how do I elevate the task to more than just winning? Open to ideas

There is also another positive problem on the horizon that could be tied into a challenge. The youth team;

I now have 3 generations of regens who have been quietly going about their business being tutored and trained. And now they seem like I should be taking notice of them. I need to do a post season analysis of the U19s, delve into their attributes, PPM, age and see who is ready to be promoted to the A team... a quick look at the squad shows bags of potential (off the screen the lowest potential I have left in U19 is 3 star, most are above that).

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They are already used to success as well;

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One ultimate goal certainly remains. Petagna (my in game love child) with the PPM 'plays with back to goal' and 'attemps overhead kicks' simply has to score one of these before I quit the save, and preferably before FM19 comes out...

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Edited by westy8chimp

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I think this is a great thread.

Have a plan, stick to your principles but adapt if need be without compromising those principles.  Really good stuff.

1 hour ago, westy8chimp said:

Winning the champions league is obviously the next big goalpost, but how do I elevate the task to more than just winning?

I assume you mean by adding dribbles, style and bicycle kicks?  At present you're using the Attacking mentality, which is instructing your players (amongst other things) to be more direct with their passing in the final third.  Is using that mentality set in stone or is it too much of a compromise to your attacking principles to reduce it a tad?  Further, where are you with PPMs and PIs for your forward players for dribbling and whatnot?  And/or adding creativity by either the TI or even being a touch more fluid with Team Shape?

Just spitballing :).

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3 minutes ago, herne79 said:

I assume you mean by adding dribbles, style and bicycle kicks?  At present you're using the Attacking mentality, which is instructing your players (amongst other things) to be more direct with their passing in the final third.  Is using that mentality set in stone or is it too much of a compromise to your attacking principles to reduce it a tad?  Further, where are you with PPMs and PIs for your forward players for dribbling and whatnot?  And/or adding creativity by either the TI or even being a touch more fluid with Team Shape?

no, moving away from that slightly in line with the ME limitations (or my perceived limitations).

Just any added challenge to make the CL harder to win (hard enough already, but my wife and baby are away for about 10 days Friday onwards, so I intend to play a lot of FM while watching the WC... might even try get to 'work at home' a couple of days)

I was thinking;

Particular tactic i.e. 442 to go back to your challenge of showing basic tactics can be good (although id be sad to see players like Havertz become surplus ... but this has been a non-sentimental save for the most part, with brutal transfer windows

Particular shape or mentality (or both in conjunction)

Particular role. TM or Wide TM? Libero? (though these would clash with Cleons excellent current and impending threads)

 

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19 minutes ago, herne79 said:

Further, where are you with PPMs and PIs for your forward players for dribbling and whatnot?

To answer this ... my squad have an abundance of PPMs most players have 2-3. Some like Arthur and Petagna are on 4-5. Nearly all of them have dribbling/running of some kind, one twos, switch ball or play killer pass.

All my defenders 'mark tightly' and half of them 'dive into tackles' (I stand by this is not a trait I would encourage in normal circumstance, but tied in with the tactic and thread)

My playmakers all have 'come deep to get the ball' and 'dictates tempo'

My BBMs and AMs 'like to get further forward'

Everyone, apart from CBS, have been training a role that encourage the attributes I'd highlighted; flair, agility, vision, technique, passing, dribbling etc (RPM, Treq, CF, Wing)

---------

Nothing set in stone. I want to see Bailey, Havertz, Akkaynak & Arthur progress, but that could be a challenge to fit these guys into a defensive or counter formation, or a possession based tactic etc.

 

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So, I'm a little late for this (your threads so far are great!), but this post and the nostalgic SFraser one really resonate with me, as I was looking to create an attacking unit brimming with creativity and flair.

Before the start of the second season, I've signed this monster:

WdJoq9p.png

Nabil Fekir - yes I'm heartbroken!

Who pretty much embodies almost every attribute you listed, which I'm infact using as a template for my attacking players.

I'm playing him in a 4-2-3-1, as the playmaker between Salah and Mane and behind Firmino. All four have amazing combination of Technique, Flair, Dribbling, Balance and Agility, with outragous speed between Salah and Mane along with the creativity (or Vision) of Firmino and Fekir.

I've just started the season, so I doesn't have much to note yet, but I wanted to take a minute and appreciate your intention on setting an attack the same way I wanted to.

I will follow your F9 adventures too, as I do play this role often.

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25 minutes ago, TheJanitor said:

just started the season, so I doesn't have much to note yet, but I wanted to take a minute and appreciate your intention on setting an attack the same way I wanted to.

I will follow your F9 adventures too, as I do play this role often.

Thanks

Your lineup sounds scary... Fekir is exactly the right kind of player. You should create a thread or at least update on this thread with how you get on with the added flair and attacking football. Ill be jealous if Fekir gets the overhead kick for you before Petagna does for me... I can see he has the PPM :D

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