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Is there anyone who understands how marking is interpreted in the match engine? For instance, I know that there is man marking and zonal marking. I'm sure that the Marking attribute is active in situations where you want to mark a specific player and have your player stick close to them, intercepting balls that come to the marked player or preventing that marked player from doing anything dangerous with the ball. But what about zonal marking? Since zonal marking is not technically sticking to one player but yet is considered a type of marking, does that mean zonal marking is still governed by Marking attribute, or is zonal marking actually governed mainly by the Positioning attribute? If you want to play the Offside Trap, does Marking affect the ability to play someone offside or is it mainly Positioning that does that?

I'm working on building a top defense, but I'm not sure exactly how a player's skill is represented through attributes for the match engine.

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Both are a combination of attributes, marking among them. Anticipation, decisions, composure, concentration, bravery, aggression, positioning, strength, will all play a part as well I'd say. Marking is exactly what it says, whether it is man marking or picking up an opponent when defending through zonal marking. 

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You are either marking a specific player (man mark) or a particular zone or area (zonal)

My belief is that the Marking attribute, as one of a combination, is more influential for man-marking instructions. Zonal marking being more reliant on anticipation, decisions, etc (as mentioned above). 

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The best way to look at it is: Marking is how well a player actually marks and keeps track of someone, whereas other mental attributes (such as positioning and anticipation) will improve their decision-making in terms of who to mark and when. Since marking is a technical attribute, it's not used to catch players offside so much as the previously mentioned mental attributes.

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Really appreciate the answers, in particular from Jack. Hearing that marking is a technical attribute helps me understand that it is active in specific situations even if you choose not to have your players man mark specific players, but it isn't required for successful zonal marking, which has more to do with team tactics and attributes that help players defend well as a unit (Teamwork, Anticipation, Positioning).

If I could trouble you for a bit more information, there is still one major thing I lack understanding of after watching a lot of matches to try to figure out how to defend consistently well. After years of football and FM, I have finally learned that when the opponent is 2v1 and I have one defender and the opponent has a wide player with the ball and also a central player, the correct option (in my opinion) is usually to have my defender stand between the two players in order to block the through ball and force the wide player to shoot. This is risky, but not as risky as letting the wide player make a through ball to the central player. Sometimes, though, my defender chooses to close down the wide player and I can live with that because I can attribute that to poor Decisions. But what I don't understand is when my defender stays between the two opposing players but fails to intercept the through ball from the wide player to the central player. This leaves me wondering whether (1) the defender failed to Anticipate the pass or (2) the defender did anticipate the pass but then ran to the wrong Position to cut out the pass and therefore missed the interception, or maybe even (3) defender was already in the wrong Position when the pass was made and therefore was helpless to react even though he correctly Anticipated the pass. I'm sure that Anticipation has a role somewhere. What I don't know revolves around positioning. Positioning puts a player in the spot that minimizes the most obvious dangers. It discourages opposing players from trying through balls and it minimizes the effectiveness of all but the best through balls. But what about after the through ball has already started? Will players with high Anticipation but low Positioning fail to cut out passes because they see the pass coming but don't understand where to run in order to intercept? Is Positioning required for the defender to understand how to cut out the through ball that is already coming? Or is that only about Anticipation?

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3 minutes ago, WizbaII said:

If I could trouble you for a bit more information, there is still one major thing I lack understanding of after watching a lot of matches to try to figure out how to defend consistently well. After years of football and FM, I have finally learned that when the opponent is 2v1 and I have one defender and the opponent has a wide player with the ball and also a central player, the correct option (in my opinion) is usually to have my defender stand between the two players in order to block the through ball and force the wide player to shoot. This is risky, but not as risky as letting the wide player make a through ball to the central player. Sometimes, though, my defender chooses to close down the wide player and I can live with that because I can attribute that to poor Decisions. But what I don't understand is when my defender stays between the two opposing players but fails to intercept the through ball from the wide player to the central player. This leaves me wondering whether (1) the defender failed to Anticipate the pass or (2) the defender did anticipate the pass but then ran to the wrong Position to cut out the pass and therefore missed the interception, or maybe even (3) defender was already in the wrong Position when the pass was made and therefore was helpless to react even though he correctly Anticipated the pass. I'm sure that Anticipation has a role somewhere. What I don't know revolves around positioning. Positioning puts a player in the spot that minimizes the most obvious dangers. It discourages opposing players from trying through balls and it minimizes the effectiveness of all but the best through balls. But what about after the through ball has already started? Will players with high Anticipation but low Positioning fail to cut out passes because they see the pass coming but don't understand where to run in order to intercept? Is Positioning required for the defender to understand how to cut out the through ball that is already coming? Or is that only about Anticipation?

Could also just be the simple explanation: the other team's player puts in a good pass/cutback/cross and even the best defender can't cover the whole pitch...

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I understand that sometimes players put in good passes. What I'm talking about are situations in which it was possible to cut out the pass but the defender failed to do so through their own error rather than because the pass was superb.

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23 hours ago, WizbaII said:

I understand that sometimes players put in good passes. What I'm talking about are situations in which it was possible to cut out the pass but the defender failed to do so through their own error rather than because the pass was superb.

Anything in the game is rarely ever about one or other attribute.  In the situation you describe sure Positioning and Anticipation can play a part, but anticipating a pass is one thing - cutting it out is something else entirely.  Does the defender have the necessary acceleration to get to it?  Is he capable of making the right Decision?  Perhaps it's a particularly Pressure situation.  Maybe he lacks Consistency.  Then again he might panic because he lacks Composure.  Are you already 3-0 down, he lacks Determination and so can't be bothered?  Or some/all of the above.  And then you get into body language & morale which is a different kettle of fish...

And the final nail in the coffin - players aren't robots and making mistakes is built into the game.

However, if this is a regular thing of finding one defender against 2 attackers I might be more concerned about how he keeps getting into that situation in the first place than how he's able to cope when he's in it :thup:.

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You just gave me a wonderful lecture on how soccer works, but you didn't answer the question. I understand that even FM soccer is a complex game, but each attribute still matters. All I want, if anyone would be so kind, is to know: What are the limits of the Positioning attribute? What can it affect and not affect? Is Positioning a necessary or helpful attribute in order for a player to properly understand how to calculate the trajectory of a pass that is already underway or is it instead an attribute that only focuses on a player's understanding of the tactical set-up to know where they should be compared to other players and compared to the goal?

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1 hour ago, WizbaII said:

Is Positioning a necessary or helpful attribute in order for a player to properly understand how to calculate the trajectory of a pass that is already underway or is it instead an attribute that only focuses on a player's understanding of the tactical set-up to know where they should be compared to other players and compared to the goal?

The way I see it, when the ball is already underway, positioning attribute has done its job mostly . Defender have to be positioned well to have any chance to cut out the pass. And it works in conjunction with other attributes like others explained. You can't really look at it isolated. Player with good positioning but bad decisions can be caught way out of position, for example.

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11 hours ago, yolixeya said:

 

The way I see it, when the ball is already underway, positioning attribute has done its job mostly . Defender have to be positioned well to have any chance to cut out the pass. And it works in conjunction with other attributes like others explained. You can't really look at it isolated. Player with good positioning but bad decisions can be caught way out of position, for example.

True. In my opinion, decision/ position/anticipation/determination/composure/acceleration are the attributes to look for! when u are looking for a good defender. An intelligent player will do a good job. 

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