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Hi Si forums, this is my first post. I am currently in my second season with Leicester. Last season we played an aggressive 4-3-3 which saw us finish 4th in the table after a remarkable turn of form at the back end of the season. I had planned to stick with this tactic but after poor opening results, Mahrez picking up a long-term injury and my inability to acquire a suitable backup I felt that I had to change the system. Here it is below:

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Player Instructions are as follows:

GK: Distribute to Centre Backs, Back 4: Close Down Much Less, DL: Cross Aim Far Post, RW: Roam From Position, Mark DCL, STC: Mark DCR

I have been struggling all season as shown by these results:

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Away form has been extremely poor, no away clean sheet in the league so far, even after shifting 3/4 of my budget on Romagnoli. We've scored 6 fewer goals than this stage last season but conceded around 15 more. Here's the team report:

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Nevertheless, Vardy is banging them in, Arthur is my favourite player on this year's FM, he is a beast, and finally Gray is doing fine too. Nobody else is performing well and most are performing below expectation:

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League table isn't bleak but I am 6-1 to be sacked, didn't meet League Cup expectations and they went me to obtain European football for next season. I am still in the Europa League, last 32 vs Kyiv. I have about £25m in the bank to spend in January if need be. Mahrez is 7 weeks to 4 months away from returning to full fitness. 

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Here are the attributes of my players currently:

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I am desperate to keep my job and push on in the 2nd half of the season. If you were me, what would you change? All advice is appreciated and I thank you for reading this post. 

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Posted (edited)

The thing that stands out to me is your WP-A + DLP-S both on the left side, but the main early runner is a W-A on the opposite side of the field.  It would require a long precise cross field pass to find him assuming those creators have the right passing distance instruction.  I'm also not sure why he's not in MR rather than AMR?

Your already on Attacking mentality with two creators, do you need to tell the team to Pass Into Space?  Does the increased number of players trying risky passes more often help?  Do they have enough options?

Why increase tempo even more than the Attacking mentality default which is high to start with?  Especially if your then telling the advanced wide players to hold up the ball due to Look For Overlap so they wait for the DL+DR to get forward.  You already have a natural overlap with a WB-S + WP-A, do you really want the W-A to be overlapped by a FB-S?  Playing such a high tempo with two playmakers, if the ball gets to the winger quickly who's going to be in the box for the cross except maybe Vardy?

Whilst you have good players I don't see how the combination of roles+duties fit together especially with the team settings?  Whats your actual plan?  I don't mean "arthur creates and vardy + gray scores", I mean an actual plan of how the ball + players move to defend and create good chances.

Edited by summatsupeer

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Posted (edited)

First post since my Leeds thread in FM 16 but I had to comment as I am currently developing a tactic which looks similar to this one.

My first concern (as summatsupeer) has already mentioned is with the left flank. 2 playmakers in close proximity with no real outlet. You could try changing the ML to WM(S) with the PI Cuts inside with ball. Arthur (your current ML)  looks like he has the attributes to make this work well (it would be good to see his PPMs), and you could even increase his personal level of creativity to allow him more flexibility in the role (considering you have a Structured shape which will reduce individual creativity). This will create movement in front of your DLP, support for your striker and space for the WB to run into.

Next, your TIs when combined with the Attacking mentality don't make a whole lot of sense to me. The Look for Overlap I think you can drop completely as you are after a fast transitional style of play (Attacking mentality) but ask your wide players to hold up the ball for support (Look for Overlap) - this seems contradictory to me. Also, I would either lower the mentality to Standard or even Counter and keep the Higher Tempo and Pass into Space, or keep the Attacking mentality and drop those 2 TIs. Keeping it simpler by removing TIs allows you to see what the core movement and shape is on the pitch, enabling fault diagnosis. Adding in lots of TIs makes it more confusing to work out what is wrong. Finally, having a structured shape but Be more Expressive TI is a little strange also. 

I'm still working on my system so it is by no means finished, but for reference it is as follows:

  • Counter/Fluid mentality and shape
  • very similar roles and duties (my ML is a WM(S) as described above and my MCL is a CM(S) as my shape gives them extra creativity so I don't need the specialist role)
  • TIs Pass out of Defence and Higher Tempo allowing for more measured transitions when the Counter Attack is not triggered, but not so slow and ponderous that the opposition can settle back into their shape easily
  • PIs are on the Goalkeeper to Roll it out and the ML to Cut Inside with Ball, DF has Move into Channels to create more lateral movement.
Edited by facman

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3 hours ago, summatsupeer said:

The thing that stands out to me is your WP-A + DLP-S both on the left side, but the main early runner is a W-A on the opposite side of the field.  It would require a long precise cross field pass to find him assuming those creators have the right passing distance instruction.  I'm also not sure why he's not in MR rather than AMR?

Your already on Attacking mentality with two creators, do you need to tell the team to Pass Into Space?  Does the increased number of players trying risky passes more often help?  Do they have enough options?

Why increase tempo even more than the Attacking mentality default which is high to start with?  Especially if your then telling the advanced wide players to hold up the ball due to Look For Overlap so they wait for the DL+DR to get forward.  You already have a natural overlap with a WB-S + WP-A, do you really want the W-A to be overlapped by a FB-S?  Playing such a high tempo with two playmakers, if the ball gets to the winger quickly who's going to be in the box for the cross except maybe Vardy?

Whilst you have good players I don't see how the combination of roles+duties fit together especially with the team settings?  Whats your actual plan?  I don't mean "arthur creates and vardy + gray scores", I mean an actual plan of how the ball + players move to defend and create good chances.

1. He's an AMR because I wanted a Raumdeuter style player who also closes down opponents, the Raumdueter role automatically sets closing down to less so I went with the W(A).  So either move the winger back to a flat 4-1-4-1 or push the ML up to an AML. Also consider swapping the DLP and BBM roles. I get you.

2. Pass into space was to encourage Vardy and Gray who are quite pacy to get in behind on counter attacks but yes I agree with you, it looks better if I removed the instruction altogether.

3. Funny enough I was even sceptical myself with Look for Overlap and I guess this confirms my suspicions. Terrible idea. The BBM gets into the box a little bit I agree more bodies are needed there.

4. The plan was simply to attempt to replicate last season's form without Mahrez. As I mentioned, I didn't get a suitable backup yet I still wanted to play a similar way. I thought I could rectify the situation by simply putting an extra body in central midfield and remove a winger. Gray and Mahrez both played as inside forwards last season and it worked a treat. The tactic relied on the penetration of the front three, Arthur's magnificent playmaking abilities as an AP(A) with a DLP(S) and a Half Back. Back four remained similar but with different roles, if anything more defensive, yet as seen I've been conceding more. Sometimes the DLP(S) was replaced with a CM(A). 

1 hour ago, facman said:

First post since my Leeds thread in FM 16 but I had to comment as I am currently developing a tactic which looks similar to this one.

My first concern (as summatsupeer) has already mentioned is with the left flank. 2 playmakers in close proximity with no real outlet. You could try changing the ML to WM(S) with the PI Cuts inside with ball. Arthur (your current ML)  looks like he has the attributes to make this work well (it would be good to see his PPMs), and you could even increase his personal level of creativity to allow him more flexibility in the role (considering you have a Structured shape which will reduce individual creativity). This will create movement in front of your DLP, support for your striker and space for the WB to run into.

Next, your TIs when combined with the Attacking mentality don't make a whole lot of sense to me. The Look for Overlap I think you can drop completely as you are after a fast transitional style of play (Attacking mentality) but ask your wide players to hold up the ball for support (Look for Overlap) - this seems contradictory to me. Also, I would either lower the mentality to Standard or even Counter and keep the Higher Tempo and Pass into Space, or keep the Attacking mentality and drop those 2 TIs. Keeping it simpler by removing TIs allows you to see what the core movement and shape is on the pitch, enabling fault diagnosis. Adding in lots of TIs makes it more confusing to work out what is wrong. Finally, having a structured shape but Be more Expressive TI is a little strange also. 

I'm still working on my system so it is by no means finished, but for reference it is as follows:

  • Counter/Fluid mentality and shape
  • very similar roles and duties (my ML is a WM(S) as described above and my MCL is a CM(S) as my shape gives them extra creativity so I don't need the specialist role)
  • TIs Pass out of Defence and Higher Tempo allowing for more measured transitions when the Counter Attack is not triggered, but not so slow and ponderous that the opposition can settle back into their shape easily
  • PIs are on the Goalkeeper to Roll it out and the ML to Cut Inside with Ball, DF has Move into Channels to create more lateral movement.

1. I'll try to find his PPM's, but I see your point. He is fantastic in the final third, however, if I were to hypothetically go with a 4-1-2-3 instead of a 4-1-4-1, would an AP(S) with the same PI's suit?

2. Look for Overlap is gone haha, I want to keep the attacking mentality so I'll drop those TI's. Do you think I should keep structured and remove BME or keep BME and maybe go to fluid? Also, I wouldn't want to copy a tactic completely but I think I might try Pass out of Defence, my players seem well equipped for it. Thanks guys for the help, I'll be back to try this out in game.

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Here is the new take on the tactic:

9.thumb.png.1247d91dad28dc871e3055ec02e57147.png

  • WP(A) changed to a WM(S) with PI's to Cut Inside with Ball and More Risky Passes
  • Midfield is now a CM(A) + a DLP(S)
  • AMR is now a MR
  • TI's are now Play out of Defence, Stay on Feet and Close Down Much More
  • STC has Move Into Channels

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Home to Newcastle, here's their predicted lineup, great report actually that's how they lined up.

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They scored a very early set piece, other than that it was a very poor game. Neither side attacked with much purpose and both defended well, Newcastle slightly better. On 54' Zeca got sent off so I went to Fluid and added Be More Expressive, to no avail. Eventually rolled the dice, moved both wide midfielders up to AML and AMR, took Arthur off (he started with 85% condition to be fair) and brought on Cipriano as an AP(S). In added time took off Ndidi for Iheanacho as an AF(A). I'm happy with our defensive work but we hardly tested Newcastle's defence at all, it was lethargic at times. I understand it was the first game using the tactic but the team are very familiar with it already. Stats are below, I noticed Arthur had very few amounts of pass completed, quite worrying:

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As ever thanks guys for your help, but the system still needs work as we can see. I think I'm going to start the next game with Gray and Arthur in the AML and AMR positions and see if that makes a difference.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Jiggins said:

1. I'll try to find his PPM's, but I see your point. He is fantastic in the final third, however, if I were to hypothetically go with a 4-1-2-3 instead of a 4-1-4-1, would an AP(S) with the same PI's suit?

2. Look for Overlap is gone haha, I want to keep the attacking mentality so I'll drop those TI's. Do you think I should keep structured and remove BME or keep BME and maybe go to fluid? Also, I wouldn't want to copy a tactic completely but I think I might try Pass out of Defence, my players seem well equipped for it. Thanks guys for the help, I'll be back to try this out in game.

1. Do you mean Arthur as an AP(S) in the AML position? Could work, he's got the attributes for it.

2. When thinking about shape one of the things I always keep in mind is how many specialist roles I have in my team. A more Fluid shape give more creative freedom, so the players will depend less on the role and duty you give to them and more on their own attributes and PPMs. A more Structured shape and they will need more direction from you as coach to tell them what to do as their individual creative freedom is more limited. There is an old topic which gives guidelines for the number of specialist roles to include. It's not set in stone but I find it helps me to think about tactical set ups (link below). Looking at your tactic the thing that stands out is that you are playing Structured but with very few specialist roles (only 1 really, the DLP). So you can afford to go to a Fluid shape for the entire game and give your players a bit more freedom to experiment on the pitch, or introduce more specialist roles. Also, I think your CM(A) is on the wrong side of the midfield. If he moves forward he will run into the WM(S) cutting inside. Having him on the right of the DLP, and maybe changing him to a BBM, will allow him to run forward unobstructed.

 

EDIT: looking at your tactic for the Newcastle game, have you considered giving your DL an attacking duty to overlap the WM?

EDIT 2: Just looked at your starting 11 - half of them need rest - that might be a cause of some of your issues. I would load up FM Touch and try the tactic there without having the hassle of familiarity or mid-season fatigue to worry about...

Edited by facman

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20 minutes ago, facman said:

1. Do you mean Arthur as an AP(S) in the AML position? Could work, he's got the attributes for it.

2. When thinking about shape one of the things I always keep in mind is how many specialist roles I have in my team. A more Fluid shape give more creative freedom, so the players will depend less on the role and duty you give to them and more on their own attributes and PPMs. A more Structured shape and they will need more direction from you as coach to tell them what to do as their individual creative freedom is more limited. There is an old topic which gives guidelines for the number of specialist roles to include. It's not set in stone but I find it helps me to think about tactical set ups (link below). Looking at your tactic the thing that stands out is that you are playing Structured but with very few specialist roles (only 1 really, the DLP). So you can afford to go to a Fluid shape for the entire game and give your players a bit more freedom to experiment on the pitch, or introduce more specialist roles. Also, I think your CM(A) is on the wrong side of the midfield. If he moves forward he will run into the WM(S) cutting inside. Having him on the right of the DLP, and maybe changing him to a BBM, will allow him to run forward unobstructed.

EDIT: looking at your tactic for the Newcastle game, have you considered giving your DL an attacking duty to overlap the WM?

EDIT 2: Just looked at your starting 11 - half of them need rest - that might be a cause of some of your issues. I would load up FM Touch and try the tactic there without having the hassle of familiarity or mid-season fatigue to worry about...

4

Yep, as shown below Arthur can play that role extremely well, I'll try out Fluid for my next game and see how it fares, same with the midfield, although I've noticed Silva gets a better average rating whilst on CM(A) but I'll give it a go. DL to an attack duty could also work, and yes my team are quite tired but I try to rest them as best I can, we're coming out of the busy Christmas period too.

Next game, did as planned, Arthur as an AP(S), Gray back to his usual AML position. It worked, kind of:

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It looks great until I tell you that two of our goals came from corners. I guess they all count, but I much prefer to score from open play, we did that though:

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Arthur dropping inside created room for Chillwell on the overlap, his cross was slammed in at the front post by Vardy. Nice move.

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Hull's goal was simple really, long through ball over Chillwell who was maybe lacking concentration, Grosicki outpaced him, crossed it into Barnes who scored. I'm not sure who/what to blame really, maybe the midfield could've closed down the initial ball.

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5 Clear Cut Chances and 5 Half Chances are excellent. I'm also pleased with only 4 long shots out of 20.

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Arthur picked up an 8.6 rating. 7 key passes and 2 chances created. He's staying in this role for now. 

I'm still looking for ways to improve this so if you see anything let me know, thanks as ever.

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1 hour ago, Jiggins said:

1. He's an AMR because I wanted a Raumdeuter style player who also closes down opponents, the Raumdueter role automatically sets closing down to less so I went with the W(A).  So either move the winger back to a flat 4-1-4-1 or push the ML up to an AML. Also consider swapping the DLP and BBM roles. I get you.

2. Pass into space was to encourage Vardy and Gray who are quite pacy to get in behind on counter attacks but yes I agree with you, it looks better if I removed the instruction altogether.

3. Funny enough I was even sceptical myself with Look for Overlap and I guess this confirms my suspicions. Terrible idea. The BBM gets into the box a little bit I agree more bodies are needed there.

4. The plan was simply to attempt to replicate last season's form without Mahrez. As I mentioned, I didn't get a suitable backup yet I still wanted to play a similar way. I thought I could rectify the situation by simply putting an extra body in central midfield and remove a winger. Gray and Mahrez both played as inside forwards last season and it worked a treat. The tactic relied on the penetration of the front three, Arthur's magnificent playmaking abilities as an AP(A) with a DLP(S) and a Half Back. Back four remained similar but with different roles, if anything more defensive, yet as seen I've been conceding more. Sometimes the DLP(S) was replaced with a CM(A). 

But Raum an Winger are totally different roles, one stays wide and looks to dribble+cross often whilst the other roams around so could be more central and easier to find.  Could you of not just told him to Close Down More with a PI?  I'd of had less issue with a IF/RMD than a Winger due to them not being as close to the touchline on the opposite flank from the playmakers.

Moving the winger back to MR wasn't really linked to how far away he was from the two playmakers,  just wondering why you decided to have the defensive formation split.

Pass Into Space doesn't increase how often players run into space, thats the Get Forward instruction.

Two inside forwards becoming a AP-A and W-A is a big change, on one side he's going to be wider and the WP will often be deeper to collect the ball and more urgant with his passing, but whats his options?  A DF, maybe the LB or a sideways pass which doesn't fit his instructions, especially on attacking mentality.

44 minutes ago, Jiggins said:

Here is the new take on the tactic:

9.thumb.png.1247d91dad28dc871e3055ec02e57147.png

  • WP(A) changed to a WM(S) with PI's to Cut Inside with Ball and More Risky Passes
  • Midfield is now a CM(A) + a DLP(S)
  • AMR is now a MR
  • TI's are now Play out of Defence, Stay on Feet and Close Down Much More
  • STC has Move Into Channels

I'm not sure how they've developed, but do you really want your playmaker in that team to be Davies so he gets the ball more than normal?  Whilst you've changed the WM to be more of a creator the team aren't told to give him the ball more often, plus he's still stuck out wide with really only a WB-S and CM-A as targets.  WB-S probably won't get past him early enough to be an option and the CM-A is likely in a congested area so probably hard to find with a through ball.

If the DF-S moves into the channel, who's using that lateral space?  Maybe the CM-A but everyone else is staying deeper (DLP-S + DM-D) and others are wide and deeper (WM-S) or very high and wide (W-A).

For an attacking tactic I feel like your lacking options, it looks like you'll typically have 6 players (+GK) behind the ball (FB-S, BPD, CD, WB-S, DM-D, FLP-S) and maybe even the WM-S.  At most I think the DF-S, W-A, CM-A and maybe the WM-S are going to be the forward passing options.

I'm not sure what the route to goal is besides the winger swinging cross in.  WM-S has CM-A inside of him, WB-S will tend to overlap later on higher up the pitch so unless the DF-S is available he's likely to pass it backwards or try and dribble it (Arthur isn't amazing dribbler from what I remember) but cutting inside the CM-A is already there.

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, summatsupeer said:

But Raum an Winger are totally different roles, one stays wide and looks to dribble+cross often whilst the other roams around so could be more central and easier to find.  Could you of not just told him to Close Down More with a PI?  I'd of had less issue with a IF/RMD than a Winger due to them not being as close to the touchline on the opposite flank from the playmakers.

Moving the winger back to MR wasn't really linked to how far away he was from the two playmakers,  just wondering why you decided to have the defensive formation split.

Pass Into Space doesn't increase how often players run into space, thats the Get Forward instruction.

Two inside forwards becoming a AP-A and W-A is a big change, on one side he's going to be wider and the WP will often be deeper to collect the ball and more urgant with his passing, but whats his options?  A DF, maybe the LB or a sideways pass which doesn't fit his instructions, especially on attacking mentality.

I'm not sure how they've developed, but do you really want your playmaker in that team to be Davies so he gets the ball more than normal?  Whilst you've changed the WM to be more of a creator the team aren't told to give him the ball more often, plus he's still stuck out wide with really only a WB-S and CM-A as targets.  WB-S probably won't get past him early enough to be an option and the CM-A is likely in a congested area so probably hard to find with a through ball.

If the DF-S moves into the channel, who's using that lateral space?  Maybe the CM-A but everyone else is staying deeper (DLP-S + DM-D) and others are wide and deeper (WM-S) or very high and wide (W-A).

For an attacking tactic I feel like your lacking options, it looks like you'll typically have 6 players (+GK) behind the ball (FB-S, BPD, CD, WB-S, DM-D, FLP-S) and maybe even the WM-S.  At most I think the DF-S, W-A, CM-A and maybe the WM-S are going to be the forward passing options.

I'm not sure what the route to goal is besides the winger swinging cross in.  WM-S has CM-A inside of him, WB-S will tend to overlap later on higher up the pitch so unless the DF-S is available he's likely to pass it backwards or try and dribble it (Arthur isn't amazing dribbler from what I remember) but cutting inside the CM-A is already there.

11

The most the game lets a Raum close down is less and I wasn't really a fan of that. Gray is right-footed too so cutting inside on his left is not ideal (why losing Mahrez was a killer) 

WP(A) is now an AP(S) in an AML position. I know it's one performance but Arthur looks well equipped in that role, WB is now on an attack duty. 

Davies has developed a bit, signed him this season after Everton got relegated, I admit his role in a DLP(S) is something I'm looking at. Maybe an RPM(S), he plays one-twos, could link well with Arthur.

Honestly don't know what lateral space is, Google didn't really help either haha, do you mean like someone making runs into the box? DLP(S) to RPM(S) might help?

EDIT: Gray twisted his ankle, I have no first team wingers, only Harvey Barnes and Cipriano for the next 4-5 weeks. This is a problem haha

Edited by Jiggins
Demarai Gray

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4 hours ago, Jiggins said:

The most the game lets a Raum close down is less and I wasn't really a fan of that. Gray is right-footed too so cutting inside on his left is not ideal (why losing Mahrez was a killer) 

Raum doesn't have to cut inside, he does what he wants really, a mix that makes him unpredictable hence needs good mentals to choose the right thing to do.

TBH with so many players deep, in basically a 4141 he'd likely be isolated when he closes down anyway.

4 hours ago, Jiggins said:

WP(A) is now an AP(S) in an AML position. I know it's one performance but Arthur looks well equipped in that role, WB is now on an attack duty. 

Davies has developed a bit, signed him this season after Everton got relegated, I admit his role in a DLP(S) is something I'm looking at. Maybe an RPM(S), he plays one-twos, could link well with Arthur.

Don't just look at the player and a single role, look at what it needs to do with the roles around it.  DLP is more of a sitting moving the ball around, RPM will still drop to collect the ball but will then run forward with it more often.  Why do you want him to do that?  Is he going to have space to run into and options to pass to when he's closed down or will he be running into dead ends?  Should he even be dropping deep to collect the ball when you have a DM and are playing an attacking style?  Should he play a more normal role that stays more to his position to give options to advance the ball rather than trying to go collect the ball himself? 

Don't fall into the trap of thinking you must have a player thats a good creator in a playmaker role or has to try risky passes often.  More doesn't always mean more successful, it needs to fit with what is going on around him.  Personally i think that in an attacking tactic thats trying to play forward quickly, having 2 of your front 5 dropping and moving to try and collect the ball because they're playmakers doesn't leave many advanced options once they get the ball, especially when 3 of the back 5 are defend duties.  WB-A or FB-A should help give another option but could get cross heavy if Arthur doesn't have other options.

4 hours ago, Jiggins said:

Honestly don't know what lateral space is, Google didn't really help either haha, do you mean like someone making runs into the box? DLP(S) to RPM(S) might help?

Vertical = Goal to Goal

Lateral = Sideline to Sideline

So Move Into Channels tells a player to move more often from a central area to a channel like between the CB - FB rather than being between CB-CB.  If the opposition FB is then occupy by a wide forward or has to step up to engage a player running at him with the ball, it can give the ST space to run behind him or pull the CB out more for a deep runner to find space between the CB's.

RPM is not a player that is typically a runner.  He's more of a player that transitions the ball through running with it rather than passing to draw players to him and create space for another player, because he moves to collect the ball he might arrive late into the box but unlikely to be a "runner".

4 hours ago, Jiggins said:

EDIT: Gray twisted his ankle, I have no first team wingers, only Harvey Barnes and Cipriano for the next 4-5 weeks. This is a problem haha

Any forwards or FBs able to do a half decent job?  Don't worry about position familiarity, just look at there attributes for the role.  Maybe even stick Vardy out there and start his backup up front so the player quality is better?

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UPDATE

I'm having some decent success now. Since the 1-0 loss to Newcastle, we won 5 out of 6, including a 4-2 demolition of Man Utd. We have however lost our last 2, away to Chelsea who are top of the league and away to Newcastle in the FA Cup. I have one major concern about this tactic. We are scoring lots of goals, which is great considering Vardy also got injured, but him and Gray should be back fairly soon. Other than set pieces and the occasional wonder strike, our main source of goals conceded have come from crosses. Most originate from counter attacks but some happen regardless. I have some examples along with the tweaked tactic which otherwise is going great:

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I decided to have faith in my backups and they have somewhat repaid that faith. W(A) is now IF(A), AP(S) is now IF(S), FB(S) is now WB(S) and DLP(S) is now an RPM(S).

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This is one of four situations where we conceded. Pavon floated a cross to the back post for Ritchie to finish unmarked

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Ritchie turned provider here, Slimani scored but the other player (think it's Shelvey) would've gotten there had Slimani not.

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Ipswich are the worst team in the league, maybe ever. 4 points, no wins. Yet they got a consolation against us. Can't remember who scored but he made a move back post to head home.

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Away at Chelsea, Azpilicueta on the overlap whipped one in for Morata who eventually got a hat-trick. Romagnoli there is seemingly in control of the situation but he allows his marker to get there first. How? I don't know. As I mentioned other than that we have been solid. Yet this trend is frustrating and an obvious flaw in our game. Remember our back four are all on close down much less. I remember in fm17 I did that to nullify the threat of through balls but is it having a negative effect on crosses? Also, I've noticed that when the DL and DR are told to close down however they please, they tend to do it aggressively, normally ignoring an overlapping run, which then exposes the flank. I'm a bit stuck on this if I'm honest.

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6 minutes ago, summatsupeer said:

Raum doesn't have to cut inside, he does what he wants really, a mix that makes him unpredictable hence needs good mentals to choose the right thing to do.

TBH with so many players deep, in basically a 4141 he'd likely be isolated when he closes down anyway.

Don't just look at the player and a single role, look at what it needs to do with the roles around it.  DLP is more of a sitting moving the ball around, RPM will still drop to collect the ball but will then run forward with it more often.  Why do you want him to do that?  Is he going to have space to run into and options to pass to when he's closed down or will he be running into dead ends?  Should he even be dropping deep to collect the ball when you have a DM and are playing an attacking style?  Should he play a more normal role that stays more to his position to give options to advance the ball rather than trying to go collect the ball himself? 

Don't fall into the trap of thinking you must have a player thats a good creator in a playmaker role or has to try risky passes often.  More doesn't always mean more successful, it needs to fit with what is going on around him.  Personally i think that in an attacking tactic thats trying to play forward quickly, having 2 of your front 5 dropping and moving to try and collect the ball because they're playmakers doesn't leave many advanced options once they get the ball, especially when 3 of the back 5 are defend duties.  WB-A or FB-A should help give another option but could get cross heavy if Arthur doesn't have other options.

Vertical = Goal to Goal

Lateral = Sideline to Sideline

So Move Into Channels tells a player to move more often from a central area to a channel like between the CB - FB rather than being between CB-CB.  If the opposition FB is then occupy by a wide forward or has to step up to engage a player running at him with the ball, it can give the ST space to run behind him or pull the CB out more for a deep runner to find space between the CB's.

RPM is not a player that is typically a runner.  He's more of a player that transitions the ball through running with it rather than passing to draw players to him and create space for another player, because he moves to collect the ball he might arrive late into the box but unlikely to be a "runner".

Any forwards or FBs able to do a half decent job?  Don't worry about position familiarity, just look at there attributes for the role.  Maybe even stick Vardy out there and start his backup up front so the player quality is better?

Would Arthur as a CM(A) with a PI to Move into Channels solve these problems? He will get further forward and make use of the lateral spaces. His technical ability would be fantastic there I think. But would that leave too many runners, with Ndidi as a DM(D) to spread play? He has 11 technique, 11 vision etc. I can try it, or maybe bring in Iborra who has better technicals. Also, Arthur has been pretty knackered playing the RPM(S) role. 

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1 hour ago, Jiggins said:

Would Arthur as a CM(A) with a PI to Move into Channels solve these problems? He will get further forward and make use of the lateral spaces. His technical ability would be fantastic there I think. But would that leave too many runners, with Ndidi as a DM(D) to spread play? He has 11 technique, 11 vision etc. I can try it, or maybe bring in Iborra who has better technicals. Also, Arthur has been pretty knackered playing the RPM(S) role. 

The 433 you just posted looks the best balanced so far and if its working then stick with it.  Don't just fiddle for the sake of it or due to results.  Look at what a player is doing on the field and see if he could would be better in different areas or trying different actions.  If you really don't like Arthur in the RPM role then maybe just try him in a bog standard CM-S role and let him decide what to do, he won't be as deep to collect the ball but when he gets it he should be closer to the front 3.  All Ndidi needs to do is get the ball to the CM pair, doesn't have to be great with the ball to do that.  Plus in that new setup you already have a ST with two IF coming inside to help him.  Adding a CM-A into the mix will likely just congest that area.  Besides, on attacking mentality even support duties will be high risk so should get up the pitch, he'll just not make as many forward runs as the CM-A or take quite as many risks.

Regarding your weakness to crosses from counter attacks, your playing Attacking so taking lots of risks, Fluid will bring the team together so your defenders will be more attacking and take more risks.  Your pressing much more than the already high default of attacking, combined with a shallower team (less depth) due to fluid so more space behind you and both FBs are wingbacks so getting forward leaving your flanks open. Basically the DM-D and 2xDCs have a lot of space to cover.  And your saying Stay On Feet so players will be safer trying to win the ball, whilst you'll give less fouls away you'll also reduce how often you can breakup attacks or stop play to let your players get back into position.  Are your players good enough at pressing high and the defenders at covering the space?

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Funnily enough, I reinstalled FM16 last night to take a look at my old Everton save, and I was using a 4-1-2-3 very similar to the one you just posted with a lot of success. I used an F9 instead of a DF, and an AP(S) instead of an RPM. I also used Control/Structured rather than Attacking/Fluid, but the basic movement will be the same. Can't remember is your DF has 'Move Into Channels' active by default. If it doesn't you could try it out, as the lateral movement it causes will help the Inside Forwards and BBM when they make forward runs.

Your tactic seems to be working pretty well, so the next thing I would do is to make 2 other versions with different mentality/shape so that you can change mentality/shape during a match without losing fluidity in the tactic.

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3 hours ago, facman said:

Funnily enough, I reinstalled FM16 last night to take a look at my old Everton save, and I was using a 4-1-2-3 very similar to the one you just posted with a lot of success. I used an F9 instead of a DF, and an AP(S) instead of an RPM. I also used Control/Structured rather than Attacking/Fluid, but the basic movement will be the same. Can't remember is your DF has 'Move Into Channels' active by default. If it doesn't you could try it out, as the lateral movement it causes will help the Inside Forwards and BBM when they make forward runs.

Your tactic seems to be working pretty well, so the next thing I would do is to make 2 other versions with different mentality/shape so that you can change mentality/shape during a match without losing fluidity in the tactic.

I'll have a look at this and see if I can make two other versions of the tactic. DF does have Move into Channels.

13 hours ago, summatsupeer said:

The 433 you just posted looks the best balanced so far and if its working then stick with it.  Don't just fiddle for the sake of it or due to results.  Look at what a player is doing on the field and see if he could would be better in different areas or trying different actions.  If you really don't like Arthur in the RPM role then maybe just try him in a bog standard CM-S role and let him decide what to do, he won't be as deep to collect the ball but when he gets it he should be closer to the front 3.  All Ndidi needs to do is get the ball to the CM pair, doesn't have to be great with the ball to do that.  Plus in that new setup you already have a ST with two IF coming inside to help him.  Adding a CM-A into the mix will likely just congest that area.  Besides, on attacking mentality even support duties will be high risk so should get up the pitch, he'll just not make as many forward runs as the CM-A or take quite as many risks.

Regarding your weakness to crosses from counter attacks, your playing Attacking so taking lots of risks, Fluid will bring the team together so your defenders will be more attacking and take more risks.  Your pressing much more than the already high default of attacking, combined with a shallower team (less depth) due to fluid so more space behind you and both FBs are wingbacks so getting forward leaving your flanks open. Basically the DM-D and 2xDCs have a lot of space to cover.  And your saying Stay On Feet so players will be safer trying to win the ball, whilst you'll give less fouls away you'll also reduce how often you can breakup attacks or stop play to let your players get back into position.  Are your players good enough at pressing high and the defenders at covering the space?

CM(A) was okay, might go back to an AP, maybe on Support. I'll look into making the team less fluid, might make us stronger at the back. Stay on Feet might go too. Overall though I think I'm back to winning ways, can't thank you guys enough for the advice. Don't know if this thread should be locked now but I've certainly solved the problems I had to begin with. :)

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