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MrGlenn1337

Defensive football, is it even playable in FM20?

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Is it just me or is it impossible to play any type of defensive football in this game? 

I mean, I've tried everything but all I see is me getting totally dominated whenever I try to play Catenaccio or any type of counter-attacking football, letting in goals like there's no tomorrow.
Even when I try to park the bus I end up seeing the AI create chance after chance to score, and guess what? The AI always gets a goal in the end, or 2, or 3, or 5...

It just seems so ridiculous to me that the only way to play football in FM 20, imo, is to play attacking. Gegenpress, attacking football and some form of tiki-taka seems to be the only way to play.

And another thing that is ridiculous is that when the AI defends you can almost go a whole game without hardly any highlights, but when you try to park the bus against the AI they get ccc almost every minute it seems. It's so frustrating. 

So, is it just me or is anyone else experiencing the same thing as me? 


 

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15 minutes ago, MrGlenn1337 said:

And another thing that is ridiculous is that when the AI defends you can almost go a whole game without hardly any highlights, but when you try to park the bus against the AI they get ccc almost every minute it seems. It's so frustrating. 

This tells you something. The AI and the user have the exact same tools. Which means either you are not defending in the same way as the AI, or you are not attacking defensive formations in the same way as the AI. 

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Defensive football is absolutely possible to play in FM, just like any other style of football, as long as the following conditions are met:

1. you know exactly why you want to play that particular style of football (your team's reputation and quality, the type of your players etc.)

2. your tactic is set up in a logical and balanced manner (taking all relevant factors into account, from your player's strengths and weaknesses to the impact that the team mentality has on all other elements of a tactic)

One of the biggest mistake that many people make is confusing a defensive (low-risk) team mentality with defensive styles of football. It's not necessary to use a low mentality in order to play defensive football.

Then you need to keep in mind that there are actually 2 different types of defensive football:

1. defensive counter-attacking football, and

2. ultra-defensive football (e.g. catenaccio or park the bus)

The key difference is this: the primary goal of counter-attacking football is to win the match, despite its essentially defensive nature; on the other hand, ultra-defensive football is primarily about avoiding a defeat (or at least avoiding a heavy defeat when the opposition is too superior). 

Now, I may agree that non-defensive tactics are a bit easier to set up than defensive ones in general. But it still does not mean that defensive football styles are "unplayable" in FM.

A bigger problem with defensive tactics is that even if a tactic is well constructed, it's probably not going to work (as effectively) in matches against other underdog teams (especially when you play at home against them). So you'll most probably need to have a (non-defensive) plan-B tactic for those instances.

P.S: If you post a screenshot of your tactic, then we will be able to tell you what is potentially wrong and how you could improve it :thup:

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6 hours ago, Experienced Defender said:

Defensive football is absolutely possible to play in FM, just like any other style of football, as long as the following conditions are met:

1. you know exactly why you want to play that particular style of football (your team's reputation and quality, the type of your players etc.)

2. your tactic is set up in a logical and balanced manner (taking all relevant factors into account, from your player's strengths and weaknesses to the impact that the team mentality has on all other elements of a tactic)

One of the biggest mistake that many people make is confusing a defensive (low-risk) team mentality with defensive styles of football. It's not necessary to use a low mentality in order to play defensive football.

Then you need to keep in mind that there are actually 2 different types of defensive football:

1. defensive counter-attacking football, and

2. ultra-defensive football (e.g. catenaccio or park the bus)

The key difference is this: the primary goal of counter-attacking football is to win the match, despite its essentially defensive nature; on the other hand, ultra-defensive football is primarily about avoiding a defeat (or at least avoiding a heavy defeat when the opposition is too superior). 

Now, I may agree that non-defensive tactics are a bit easier to set up than defensive ones in general. But it still does not mean that defensive football styles are "unplayable" in FM.

A bigger problem with defensive tactics is that even if a tactic is well constructed, it's probably not going to work (as effectively) in matches against other underdog teams (especially when you play at home against them). So you'll most probably need to have a (non-defensive) plan-B tactic for those instances.

P.S: If you post a screenshot of your tactic, then we will be able to tell you what is potentially wrong and how you could improve it :thup:

I usually go with "balanced" mentality when I try to be more pragmatic i order to change the style of play depending on how it's going. 

"a bit easier"? You're having a laugh.... Attacking tactics are by far easier than defensive once... Just look at the tactics that win the most titles in the game, the attacking once, and by attacking once I mean the gegenpress and tiki taka. 

Btw, it's not the underdogs that are the problem. When I try to do a Mourinho and close a game against a strong side I just end up seeing highlight after highlight and eventually the AI will score, they always do. No matter what I do. 

For an example, when I took charge of Atletico de Madrid I played home against Barcelona, not a underdog team, I then tried to do as Mou', Conte and Diego would do in those games.
Play with a defensive mentality, low block, lower LoE, defend narrow, high press(I feel like you need to press in the newer FM-games, not pressing tends to give the AI more space and will end up in a lots of goals for the AI), direct play, higher tempo, be more disciplined, waste time, play for set pieces, counter, somtimes I use counter-press, mark the best players in Barcelona.
I usually tend to have 6 players on defend, 3-4 on support and 1-2 on attack. But what ends up happening? I'll tell you. You end up seeing Barca create ccc's constantly and they will end up scoring and you'll hardly see any counter-attacks from your side at all. 

The formation I played with was 4-4-2, as Atleti does in real life. 

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You need to be very attentive the type of mentality you play as it mostly dictates the tempo and passing ratio, lower mentality means shorter passes and lower tempo which is not something A. Madrid is known for.

 

With the above said I haven´t had any success with defensive tactics either, mostly because the AI simply is more effective than I will ever be regardless of players. Inviting the AI to attack in FM 2020 is for the most part suicide.

 

I have checked many of the tactics various streamers use and no one goes defensive overall, this tends to mostly be due to the problem you mentioned. Lowering the defensive line is not a good idea, I have never gotten it to work in this  FM version... the AI regardless of team passes the ball around like Barcelona in it´s prime and boom ... 1 shot from 40 yards and you can knock on their door for the rest of the game. The AI is far better at being defensive ...

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The defensive football is really possible on fm, actually I love to play underdog. You need to understand that mentalities are not the style of football but risk level. I could definetely play attacking mentality but still being defensive, you need to look the game how goes, and pay special attention to your roles/duties. 

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The defensive line also, having it low it doesn't mean you are defending. It is key where you want to win the interception or stay at least very close to your opposing team to deny any play. If you give space to them fo course they will just keep attacking you and they will find a goal soon or later. Fm is a dynamic game, not anymore plug and play, so you need to adapt. And I believe is the most enjoyable game, in fact is the only game I play, because is not boring and I never win all games , that makes me more interested 

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5 hours ago, MrGlenn1337 said:

Play with a defensive mentality, low block, lower LoE, defend narrow, high press(I feel like you need to press in the newer FM-games, not pressing tends to give the AI more space and will end up in a lots of goals for the AI), direct play, higher tempo, be more disciplined, waste time, play for set pieces, counter, somtimes I use counter-press, mark the best players in Barcelona.

You play like this all game? No wonder you cannot get it to work. 

Defensive mentality + Low block and Low LOE = EXTREMELY back line and LOE. As in REALLY low... inviting them into your box low...

Waste time + Defensive mentality = not even dangerous so opposition can bombard with attacking duties. 

Defending narrow + low block + defensive mentality + low LOE = opposition full back can happily gallop to the corner flag and cross it into the box... time and time and time and time again. Eventually you'll concede, especially when you keep giving the ball back!

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12 hours ago, MrGlenn1337 said:

"a bit easier"? You're having a laugh.... Attacking tactics are by far easier than defensive once... Just look at the tactics that win the most titles in the game, the attacking once, and by attacking once I mean the gegenpress and tiki taka

Winning titles is a different thing. I agree that playing defensive football is far less likely to bring you trophies than a more attack-minded approach, but that's also the case in real life (Ranieri's Leicester was more of an exception than the rule). However, it does not mean that defensive tactics are unplayable or impossible to work. If you manage an underdog, winning the title is certainly not the primary goal. 

Btw, when you say "Just look at the tactics that win the most titles in the game, the attacking once, and by attacking once I mean the gegenpress and tiki taka", I am not sure if you are referring to exploit plug'n'play tactics for download or normal and sensible ones? 

12 hours ago, MrGlenn1337 said:

For an example, when I took charge of Atletico de Madrid I played home against Barcelona, not a underdog team, I then tried to do as Mou', Conte and Diego would do in those games.
Play with a defensive mentality, low block, lower LoE, defend narrow, high press(I feel like you need to press in the newer FM-games, not pressing tends to give the AI more space and will end up in a lots of goals for the AI), direct play, higher tempo, be more disciplined, waste time, play for set pieces, counter, somtimes I use counter-press, mark the best players in Barcelona.
I usually tend to have 6 players on defend, 3-4 on support and 1-2 on attack. But what ends up happening? I'll tell you. You end up seeing Barca create ccc's constantly and they will end up scoring and you'll hardly see any counter-attacks from your side at all

Well, I can see where (most probably) the problem lies. It's not because of a defensive tactic as such, but due to tactical overkill. In other words, you failed to strike the right balance. 

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20 hours ago, MrGlenn1337 said:

I usually go with "balanced" mentality when I try to be more pragmatic i order to change the style of play depending on how it's going. 

"a bit easier"? You're having a laugh.... Attacking tactics are by far easier than defensive once... Just look at the tactics that win the most titles in the game, the attacking once, and by attacking once I mean the gegenpress and tiki taka. 

Btw, it's not the underdogs that are the problem. When I try to do a Mourinho and close a game against a strong side I just end up seeing highlight after highlight and eventually the AI will score, they always do. No matter what I do. 

For an example, when I took charge of Atletico de Madrid I played home against Barcelona, not a underdog team, I then tried to do as Mou', Conte and Diego would do in those games.
Play with a defensive mentality, low block, lower LoE, defend narrow, high press(I feel like you need to press in the newer FM-games, not pressing tends to give the AI more space and will end up in a lots of goals for the AI), direct play, higher tempo, be more disciplined, waste time, play for set pieces, counter, somtimes I use counter-press, mark the best players in Barcelona.
I usually tend to have 6 players on defend, 3-4 on support and 1-2 on attack. But what ends up happening? I'll tell you. You end up seeing Barca create ccc's constantly and they will end up scoring and you'll hardly see any counter-attacks from your side at all. 

The formation I played with was 4-4-2, as Atleti does in real life. 

Pls note that Atleti 442 is not a regular 442 u find in preset tactics. they have special roles that can only be performed by really specific players for it to work. Hence I would not be surprised if u struggle with a defensive 442 formation if u set it up totally wrong since 442 isnt exactly a good defensive formation if u do not set up the player roles properly. Maybe post your screenshot tactics so others can have a look at it?

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