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Seany101

Bottom half teams too aggressive?

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Has anyone noticed how mid-table and relegation battling teams use aggressive tactics more than they used to in previous iterations of the game? 

I expected this in the first couple of seasons in my Norwich save as I too was a small team. Fast forward about 4 years and I have a solid top 6 squad and 4 star reputation, but teams like Watford and Palace are pressing me like mad especially when I'm away.

I tend to struggle for possession (about 50-50) unless I max out my d-line (how I always used to play in the past) but that now means conceding 4-5 ccc's from balls over the top per half. Opposing managers commonly have a vertical tiki-taka or gengen styles which seems to override considerations such as their teams quality and league position when it comes to match day playstyle.

I've resorted to giving up the possession battle, dropping the d-line and playing a more counter attacking style - which is quite effective. However this is not what I have built my squad to do and is not really how I want to play. It sort of breaks the immersion - imagine a team like Arsenal having to play a low block against Burnley.

 

Tldr; it would be more realistic if crap teams parked the bus more (home and away). 

Sidenote: just want to repeat that cb laser guided long balls are infuriating.

Cheers!

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I don't think its a new thing. It used to happen to me in FM18 & FM19 as well.

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What do you mean by aggressive? If its just the style, don't forget the styles can be used on different mentality settings. Furthermore we don't really know under the hood what tactical considerations have been made. One thing to note though, is that the AI is a lot more willing to take risks now, The biggest criticism for the match engine in previous versions was how rarely it would take risks.

Now if they are level par with you there is a chance that they can even go on very attacking with a change of roles/duties. I once had an underdog turn a game on its head when it maintained the same tactic at decided to go very attacking in the last 10 minutes of the game. It made sense as the score was only 1 nil. In some quarters, there is no difference between a 1 nil score line and a 10 nil scoreline. So its been a welcome change.

When managing in Portugal and Italy I have encountered sides that have defended with 8 players the worst tactic was one where it had 3 DMs and 4 defenders. All I had for 90 minutes was a side refusing to play. The pressure became even worse because my fans were not keen on 1 nil scoreline. Even 3-1 scoreline were considered not entertaining enough. So depending on the league you are in too, tactical systems can vary. So far in FM20 I have played or either started saves in almost 10 countries and I have found the variety interesting. And yes the balls over the top can be infuriating, you just need to either watch your defensive line, play with defenders who have great mental or try an cover/defend combo. One thing to note aggressive wingbacks can also give issues, giving the central defenders more to do forcing them to step up. However, most central defenders are vulnerable to deep runs so its not something thats isolated to the human, its a problem for some AI systems.  So far I haven't been hit by too many balls over the top if I manage my defensive line around players with strong acceleration  and mental attributes.

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Thanks for the replies. You make some interesting points Rashidi (big fan of your channel btw!).

By aggressive I meant high pressing, seemingly higher mentality, with full backs bombing up and defenders on the half way line. It just seemed a little out of character for some of the weaker PL sides. To be honest I play exclusively in the PL so it might be a local phenomenon since there is a lot of money flowing and squads are stronger. You can also definitely tell when the AI flips a switch at 60 minutes and starts to attack you. It does make the game more challenging though, which I like (as long as I'm winning :rolleyes:).

On the long ball point, I have focused my recruitment on pacey defenders such as Chris Mepham, Tyrone Mings and Ben Godfrey who have around 15 pace/acceleration and decent mentals, but they still get done over the top regularly. It might be because almost every PL striker also has 15+ pace. But even the slower ones just seem to get a head start on the CBs with a nicely timed run and then there is no catching up.

I am a big fan of vertical compactness so I despise dropping the d-line while maintaining a high LOE. It stretches the team out too far. That's why I begrudgingly play with a mid or low block nowadays.

I do think there should be an element of risk associated with playing with a higher or much higher d-line, but they should maybe tweak their accuracy a touch? If the other day's IRL City vs Leicester game happened in this version of FM, Vardy would have scored about 5 when in reality he only got through on goal once. City were playing with a much higher d-line and a much higher LOE. I do understand that this is a game and not a simluation but these are just my thoughts. 

 

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9 minutes ago, Seany101 said:

Thanks for the replies. You make some interesting points Rashidi (big fan of your channel btw!).

By aggressive I meant high pressing, seemingly higher mentality, with full backs bombing up and defenders on the half way line. It just seemed a little out of character for some of the weaker PL sides. To be honest I play exclusively in the PL so it might be a local phenomenon since there is a lot of money flowing and squads are stronger. You can also definitely tell when the AI flips a switch at 60 minutes and starts to attack you. It does make the game more challenging though, which I like (as long as I'm winning :rolleyes:).

On the long ball point, I have focused my recruitment on pacey defenders such as Chris Mepham, Tyrone Mings and Ben Godfrey who have around 15 pace/acceleration and decent mentals, but they still get done over the top regularly. It might be because almost every PL striker also has 15+ pace. But even the slower ones just seem to get a head start on the CBs with a nicely timed run and then there is no catching up.

I am a big fan of vertical compactness so I despise dropping the d-line while maintaining a high LOE. It stretches the team out too far. That's why I begrudgingly play with a mid or low block nowadays.

I do think there should be an element of risk associated with playing with a higher or much higher d-line, but they should maybe tweak their accuracy a touch? If the other day's IRL City vs Leicester game happened in this version of FM, Vardy would have scored about 5 when in reality he only got through on goal once. City were playing with a much higher d-line and a much higher LOE. I do understand that this is a game and not a simluation but these are just my thoughts. 

 

Its definitely not a Premier League phenomenon. I see the same thing happening at level 9 and 10. It does seem a tad counter-intuitive to have terrible teams tearing into you and playing hyper aggressive. I guess all you can do is see it as a challenge and try to adapt to it. Just remember that eleven players can't cover everywhere. If they're deep in your half then there's an absolute ton of space behind them. Its your job to punish their recklessness.

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41 minutes ago, Seany101 said:

I do think there should be an element of risk associated with playing with a higher or much higher d-line

You should just post your tactic because  there are some setups which are vulnerable with a high DL/LOE setup and some aren't

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The most successful tactics for Underdogs in real life against big favorites is aggressive pressing and quick transitions after winning the ball. Look at Hasenhüttl Ingolstadt 15/16 and Nagelsmann when he played with Hoffenheim against Bayern. So it's good that finally some teams try to do that against you in this game. Underdogs that just sit deep next to never get any points in real life.

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