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Positive and Creative Football

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So my FM experience has been getting a little stale lately. I've never been great at making tactics so I've either been using the presets in the game (with some alterations) and struggling or been using a "plug and play" type tactic off the workshop which I don't find very rewarding. So I've been reading some guides including Sporadicsmiles tactical framework guide and I've come up with something. Basically I want to play very positive football where lots of players will get in positions to score and/or get assists. It'll be entertaining to watch and produce lots of quality chances from a variety of players. I also wanted to use an unusual formation as I almost always play 4-2-3-1, 4-1-2-3 or 4-4-2 so I went with something that I feel is a bit out there.


I know that you don't really know whether or not a tactic works until you try it but I want to know if my thinking makes sense and if on paper this is a tactic that may have some success. My idea is that the DLF (would also work with CF or F9 I think) would come deep, potentially pulling defenders away (as Sporadicsmiles details in their guide). This opens space for the IF or the SS. Other options would be the IW coming foward with the ball with the FB in support and will have multiple options in the IF, CLF and SS, as well as potentially the CM coming forward for a long shot option. This would be an example of an overloaded area I believe. Similar things could happen with the FB on either side. Basically, I can straight away imagine many different scenarios leading to a chance.

The only player positions I'm really unsettled on are the DM and CM. I felt the DLP will find theirselves in a good space to distribute the ball effectively and the CAR would provide support to the IF and FB as well as arriving outside the box to provide either a long shot option or to recycle possession. I originally had the CAR as a CM-D to provide a bit more defensive grit on what I do feel is a bit of an exposed left flank, but as I understand it the CAR should sit relatively wide and provide a bit of presence there. Other bits I'm not particularly sure about is that I see the IW and DLP being probably my two more creative outlets and they will be playing quite close together.


In terms of team instructions my thinking was that having the lower LOE would draw defenders out a bit more and having a higher tempo will allow the space behind them to be used more quickly and effectively. I want the team to play fluidly creating not just a lot of chances but a wide variety of chances where everyone can contribute, hence the "be more expressive". I feel like there's no need for the keeper to hoof it upfield and with my midfield how it is, it would more likely than not come straight back hence the instruction to distribute the ball to the back 4. Other team instructions I thought about adding but wasn't sure was "pass into space" and "look for overlap" from what I understand of the latter this should happen naturally due to the roles I've set up for the wingers and full backs. Though perhaps the left FB should be on something like WB-S?

I haven't set any player instructions as I feel it depends on the players. If I get a IW with a good long shots stat I'll probably tell them to take more shots and try to train them to arrive late or something.

Really all I'm looking for is to be told that I'm thinking along the right lines OR how I could do things better. I'm also keen to here peoples opinions on how to set up the CM and DM roles and duties. I've gone through so many different combinations in my head and can think of so many pros and cons of each. I would like a creative outlet further up so thought about the CM being an AP but felt it may leave the left flank a bit too open.

I look forward to hearing peoples views.

Ignore the team I'm playing as here, I don't think I'll be using this tactic in non-league it's just the save I'm doing at the moment. 

Edited by Blah_1123

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Having had a bit longer to thinking about this and doing a bit more reading, I think there's a few tweaks I'd make. I'm not sure the fullbacks will get far forward enough but I'm also not wanting to over-commit them. I think changing their roles to WB-S would get them in better positions and also add to the fluid structure I'm looking for. I think maybe the DLP should be on a defend duty as I only have the CB's on defend at the moment and it'll allow the inside winger to play in a bit more space with a bit more freedom to be creative.

I think pass into space should be added as a team instruction. I didn't fully understand this instruction before but throughballs splitting open the defense and exploiting the space behind is definitely a part of how I want to play. I'd also add the instruction to counter (which I meant to include but forgot). That would suit the fast, fluid, attacking football I'm trying to create. Another instruction I think might be worth trying is run at defence. Maybe this would be better implemented as play instructions but when I imagine how the wingbacks, carrilero or inverted winger play I imagine them driving the ball forward before looking for the pass rather than offloading it as soon as they get possession. This is already a default instruction for the inverted winger, but perhaps it should be added for the others. 

I will try to actually test this tactic soon but at the moment I just want to know I'm understanding tactics properly and building them in a proper way.



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I'm curious to see, how this is going.. you thought well about it. Just not sure on the carrilero (never used the role) and the IW-s on the right..

Edited by BadAss88

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Okay so I've managed to test the tactic a little bit. Not in the best way, I just picked a couple of teams and let the season run with my assistant in charge of everything but making sure he uses the tactic. I changed the roles of the fullbacks to WB-S and the carrilero to a box-to-box as apparently they don't play well when you have wingers. The results were a bit mixed. I picked West Ham and Reading as two teams expected to come mid table in the premier and championship respectively. The tactic is definitely not as free scoring as I hoped but it's worth noting that neither team are particularly well set up to play this tactic. 


West Ham did manage to get to the FA cup final with this tactic though! Where they lost 3-2 to.... Bournemouth? a 82nd minute goal from Harry Wilson. 

Also managed a 16-0 against some Hong Kong minnow in a friendly as well as a couple of upsets like a 2-1 win at Old Trafford and a 1-0 win against Man City in the FA Cup semi-final. A mixed bag all in all but definitely a lot of positives, hoped to finish a bit higher up the league as 10th is where I think they're predicted at the start of the season. With some proper squad building and hands-on management rather than the assman doing it all I think this may be a good tactic. I've included the recent match analysis below. Though I'm not really sure what I should/could change to improve beyond what is suggested there. I'm normally inclined to ignore staff advice though.



Reading also did largely as expected. I've only included the league table here. They did also beat Brighton 1-0 in the FA cup but didn't make much of a run out of it. Both boards were happy with progress at the end of the season.



I did expect the tactic to lead to more goals than it has though maybe as they're mid-table teams I was expecting a bit too much and they struggled to break down bigger opposition defences. That coupled with whatever squad issues/unhappiness the assman didn't deal with properly and lack of squad building and correct training.

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