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samwilzrhcp

4-4-2 can it be successful?

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Might be a daft question, but as a fan of the simple classic 4-4-2 I was wondering if it can be a successful tactic to use in FM19, especially playing as a team outside of the top 6 of the premier league, Cardiff, Burnley, Southampton etc, as opposed to Man U, Chelsea etc.  

I have been reluctant to give it a try to be honest due to the midfield heavy tactics other teams tend to use.  But there must be a way using TI and PI to be able to build a successful 4-4-2.   

So what are the key ingredients?  Any tips or tricks?

 

By the way, I’m Barnsley in my current save, 6 years into it, in the premier league and currently competing for the europa league.  I was using a 433 dm wide.  But I’ve hit a stumbling block and want to mix it up a bit.  

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It most definitely can, I'm a 4-4-2 guy. Bare in mind 4-4-2 can be played a whole range of different ways. As long as you know what sort of players you're going to need for your style then it works just fine. I find that you can have almost any types of players and have it work but its absolutely crucial that you get central midfield right because unless you have someone else supplementing them then they could occasionally find themselves exposed. my perfect balance in central midfield is always one with acceleration, off the ball and passing and one with positioning, aggression and tackling.

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1 hour ago, Atarin said:

its absolutely crucial that you get central midfield right because unless you have someone else supplementing them then they could occasionally find themselves exposed. my perfect balance in central midfield is always one with acceleration, off the ball and passing and one with positioning, aggression and tackling

Spot on :thup:

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The majority of my successful saves on fm have come using a 4-4-2, as long as you have an idea of how you want to play and players that suit it theres no reason why it cant, although as the previous posts alluded to it can be hard to get the midfield balance right

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Last year I used a very successful 4-4-2. I didn't press very hard which allowed me to have the players more compact between lines, therefore making the midfield more crowded. Also, the CM pairing was rather conservative, with a DLP/D and a BWM/S.

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It definitely can. 

There are some advantages of 442

First is that it can provide two bank of four to maintain a good defensive shape especially if you are using it as a low block. I won't recommended to play a high block with flat 442 because 2 players up front is not enough to press enemy team back 4 in my opinion.

Second is almost every team can find players that can fit into a 442 system which is relatively easier to find players than if you want to play a regista system or a libero system.

Also, Two strikers is naturally a better threat than single striker in counter-attack. If you don't have a didier drogba you might be not able to see the forward can win the ball in the air, hold the ball and pass to the players near him. However with 442 the two strikers one will go to win the header and the other one will look for to win the ball after the header. This happens a lot in my Bournemouth save as Wilson win the header and King rush to form a one on one situation with goalkeeper.

If the ball go downs to flank, FB WB or W need to do a crossing, you naturally have two strikers in the box. Sometimes with single striker formation, you only have one which lower the chances to kick the ball in.

For example If you are playing a relatively weaker team compare to big 6 for example Burnley, you can use a low block and use forward as PFS or PFD (Sam Vokes is very suitable)to ask him to come back to defend without the ball as well as hold the ball in transition and attack. Use higher passing distance and medium or higher tempo depend on situation to build up a very traditional counter attacking style. In this style with two wide players you can use them both as wingers. It is a very traditional way. However i find change one wide player to WP also works really well as it will looks for diagonal passes rather than rushing to the byline and lost the ball. Two central midfielders should be a little more conservative because if any of these two players is caught out of space, you left huge blanks in your middle. A DLPS with BWMD is very good in my save. Sometimes i use CMD with CMS. Two Fullbacks should be conservative against big teams, FBD or at most FBS is enough. However against weaker team if you still want to adopt 442, you can change them to FBA and ask them to overlap.

I've explained a very traditional 442. However there are all kinds of 442 to experience for example Atletico Madrid had huge success with 442 but that's a bit different with what i explained. Sir Alex Ferguson had huge success with 442 but that is also different.

If anyone needs clarification let me know as English is not my first language so there might be mis-interpretation.

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If you have quality out wide, then there is no doubt that 4-4-2 can and will be successful in FM 19.  AS was said above, the wide midfielders and wing backs are the sources of most of the attacking threat, so it is critical to get the right players in those positions.

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I love the 4-4-2 

When you get the roles/positions correct and with the right type of players in those positions/roles, it's a wonderfully successful tactic.

 

 

Edited by Taipan
speeling

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4 hours ago, yann said:

442 fluid counter with atletico is my best save.

I'm at Atletico too. Out of curiosity, what roles are you using on the wings. I'm using W-A on the right and can't decided whether I like an inverted winger-support or a wide playmaker on the right. 

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I use a winger support on the right side, and a wide playmaker on the left. Bwm and btb on the middle.

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The 442 is one of the most versatile systems in the game. I would strongly recommend it for any kind of side in the game. You can have so many options in it. You can get an extra man in midfield with the use of the IWB, you can get an extra man in defence with any defend duty. In attack you can create overloads easily with how you choose your roles and duties. Personally one of the signs that you understand the game is when you can create a 442. To give you an idea:
 

a. You can play with a IWB and create a system which has the extra man in midfield that allows you to release a lot of central attacking play. Those overloads can give you the chance to deploy a winger on attack on the right flank or even an IW to become a third striker in the box

b. An orthodox winger combination with overlapping fullbacks for stronger sides. Here you would probably be using a mobile midfield pivot that can go up and down. Here I am more inclined to use two support duties, to allow give me more control of midfield. The risk is the weakness in the middle, but with the new LOE you can easily decide how you want to commit to trying to win the ball. To make the front pair more unpredictable i would consider the use of a F9 or a TM(S) paired with a CF. Easily a hard system to manage with a good side
 

c. Old fashioned wing play - here you would keep most of your backline back and play hoof ball. With wingers on attack and a TM(S) (P) combo upfront. Not very skill based, but fully dependant on BPD or NCD and even a DLP on defend.

d. Don't rule out the possibility of turning the 442 into its 442DM variant, I have shown a few people how they can do this, making it even more annoying to play against. I did use this variant with Stalybridge and was happy with how it performed.

 

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I've had great success with 4-4-2 this year, more so than any other formation. Won the Championship, finished 2nd in the Premier League and then won the Champions League in three seasons with QPR using it. Won the League of Ireland 1st season with St. Pats with record points and goals scored. Here's a screenshot of it from my first season with QPR.

f810387de9bed45e5d6ce03cc5f3faa3.png

For me, the key is the personnel. The two bands of 4 need to work in tandem with each other. I don't like putting Ozil types in CM for this reason, I like a well rounded more attack minded midfielder and a well rounded more defensive midfielder. A pure beaver or a technical magician do not cut it. I need well rounded technical and mentals for it to work and I really notice a difference when they're not there.

An attack minded full back along with a support winger works well when the other side does the opposite. 

The hardest thing about the 4-4-2 for me this year is what should be the simplest, the strike force. If you're up against a bus, it can be difficult to find space for your attack minded striker, in the Championship and Premier League Nahki Wells/Ben Yedder scored up to 40 goals in a season for me, however  as my team's reputation developed in the third season my AF has been going on regular droughts in the league (still tore it up in the CL against the big sides) and I finished 6th that third season despite winning the CL. I guess penetration from deep has been an issue as I don't like committing my midfield forward (especially in a gegen press) and risking the counter, especially as Premier League sides love an AM.

Whereas for the support striker, do I go with someone who can hold up the ball or someone who can pick a pass? I've found the former more successful so far but I'm eager to make the latter work somehow. False 9s and CF/S don't seem to offer much in terms of output in comparison to a battler in DLF/S.

 

Edited by JDeeguain

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@JDeeguain your setup looks very interesting, I'm curious to see if it works for a team which is not an underdog.

Do you use a WB on the left just because the player is better suited, I suppose?

And up front, have you tried a traditional TM/Poacher combination?

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2 hours ago, kingjericho said:

@JDeeguain your setup looks very interesting, I'm curious to see if it works for a team which is not an underdog.

Do you use a WB on the left just because the player is better suited, I suppose?

And up front, have you tried a traditional TM/Poacher combination?

To be honest, I don't think it suits a top team. I'm also struggling in my second season at St. Pats (well, it's a tight title race compared to my domination the season before (media prediction 6th)).

The problem I face, is that my teams don't tend to be good enough to play like a top team (more expansive and expressive). They're not creative or technical enough to break teams down, or to produce a moment of brilliance. So I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place in both of my saves so far, but that's the challenge of the game I suppose. 

It started out because Bidwell was more suited to it, eventually I liked the type of balance it gave and instructed my RM to "get further forward" on the other side.

No, I have never really used a TM. I've always considered it an extreme rule almost, where people will play it to him because they have to rather than it being the right decision. Could be something I experiment with in the future, have you seen any good threads on here about a TM?

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29 minutes ago, JDeeguain said:

No, I have never really used a TM. I've always considered it an extreme rule almost, where people will play it to him because they have to rather than it being the right decision. Could be something I experiment with in the future, have you seen any good threads on here about a TM?

The TM always attracts the ball, but it seems since last year the role is less extreme than the simple rule of hoofing the ball directly to him.

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My secondary tactics is an almost vanilla 442 Wingplay formation.

My only changes were:

  • The strikers are a TM(S) and a P(A), I think in the preset the latter was a AF(A)
  • My left side is a WB(A) and WP(S) instead of the standard WB/W combo

It is surprisingly robust at the back and quite versatile. If the right winger is fast and can dribble there are a lot of options a goal can happen. The same formation and roles also can be tweaked to be more run+dribble (shorter passing and positive/attack mentality with Dribble More checked) or as a slower buildup (TM into DLF, tempo and passing down). 

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I always play 4-4-2, and have done so since FM05. This year I have serious issues with getting my strikers to perform. I just can't get them to play well. I've had some minor success with deep-lying strikers and currently I actually have both strikers as that. It works OK, but not more than that.

I dominate the possession, but any striker with a speedy attacking role will get ratings of 6.5 at best, and definitely no goals. All previous versions of the game I've always had an attacking forward alongside my deep-lying striker, and the attacking forward have scored lots of goals. This year I'm scoring most of my goals from the midfield.

* I'm not sure the names for the roles are exactly as they are in english FM since I don't play the game in english. But I think they are close enough to be understood.

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On 18/12/2018 at 22:48, JDeeguain said:

No, I have never really used a TM. I've always considered it an extreme rule almost, where people will play it to him because they have to rather than it being the right decision. Could be something I experiment with in the future, have you seen any good threads on here about a TM?

Regarding tactics with a TM: https://community.sigames.com/topic/409391-my-guide-to-hoofball/?do=findComment&comment=11664332

 

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On 14/12/2018 at 13:00, samwilzrhcp said:

Might be a daft question, but as a fan of the simple classic 4-4-2 I was wondering if it can be a successful tactic to use in FM19, especially playing as a team outside of the top 6 of the premier league, Cardiff, Burnley, Southampton etc, as opposed to Man U, Chelsea etc.  

I have been reluctant to give it a try to be honest due to the midfield heavy tactics other teams tend to use.  But there must be a way using TI and PI to be able to build a successful 4-4-2.   

So what are the key ingredients?  Any tips or tricks?

 

By the way, I’m Barnsley in my current save, 6 years into it, in the premier league and currently competing for the europa league.  I was using a 433 dm wide.  But I’ve hit a stumbling block and want to mix it up a bit.  

Im giving this thread a bump, as i just found it and i like playing 442.

My opinion on can 442 be successful is that it is a resounding YES. It would have to depend on the tactic fitting the players you have and their strengths, but in general i think 442 formations are great for slightly less fancied teams who perhaps lack creativity, its a great formation for maintaining a compact, disciplined defensive shape, its versatile in the way it can be implemented from free flowing to counter attacking, and who doesnt love a great cross swung into the box to be met by a towering header from a forward? it is still beautiful.

Im currently managing Vorskla Poltava of the Ukranian Premier League, and i started another thread questioning whether my tactic was good for the long term. I think ive come full circle and just think its a well balanced, well suited tactic to my players and the league.

Vorskla are predicted to finish 4th in a 12 team division, play in front of crowds of about 5,000 and certainly lack talent, yet we are top of the Ukrainian Premier League at the winter break, through to the Ukrainian cup semi final, and through into the knockout stages of the Europa League and we are outperforming teams like Shakhtar and Dinamo Kiev who have £20 and £30 million players.

The tactic is more or less "classic 442" as you described in your post. It uses quality from out wide as the primary source of creativity, a central midfield combination of two work horses, Sklyar with slightly more talent in possesion and chipping in with goals, Sharpar offering more defensive insurance and tackling ability, and it rejuvenates the old "big man little man" partnership up front with an aerially dominant target man, and an energetic pacey little man who ive decided to give the pressing forward role to:

 

1114730142_TacticsVorskla.thumb.jpg.7fb02193c031915f74a868a1e81bad60.jpg

 

Ive got a few PI's added, all four midfielders all "mark tightly" and close down to the maximum, Sharpar is set to "hold position".

Kolomoets the target man is also set to "mark tightly" whilst the two full backs "cross from deep".

The defensive strategy is undoubtedly risky but it works well, focusing on a relentless high press where the direct balls keep on coming into the box and we aggressively look to win second balls and flick ons at every opportunity. As opposition instructions, i set the opposition back line to "mark tightly" and "close down always" and then the midfield to "close down always" and it usually starves the opponent of getting service into their front players.

Admittedly, in certain games agains good sides, they can pass through the press, which leads to some high scoring games i dont like. But overall, the tactic has been working very nicely at producing consistent results:

1743619790_LeagueResults.thumb.jpg.3fa9a720879d70faf40e2ac5d1e59a64.jpg621590413_LeagueResult2s.thumb.jpg.c6f934dadb7c92ccf9474e91a4c3efda.jpg775694615_competitionperformance.thumb.jpg.ebbfe10adbe0a8c4be801013b97eb47e.jpg

So i would say, ABSOLUTELY. This is not the only team i have used 442 with and had success, and it could work for you too if it fits the strengths of your players.

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