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Kaenhoushaki

Through balls don't happen despite all instructions.

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Posted (edited)

Hello, first post here on the forums. I find myself in a very frustrating situation during my FM19 "Non-league to Serie A" career.

 

This is the perfect example of what happens. My team plays the ball exactly as I want, up to the point it goes to my AM.

 SS1.thumb.png.90e0d7f81ac9e2c384bec79eb7fce4ee.png

Now, the play I want him to do is a through ball to my Poacher up front (#32) so he can 1v1 the keeper and hopefully score. Instead, he passes it (badly) to the WM on the left (#8)...

SS2.thumb.png.e62ed6a9148914f19df05746fcd71e9f.png

... resulting in a poor and wasteful pass and giving the opposition a throw-in.

SS3.thumb.png.db605ad8584c39ea6130d67493f41165.png

The frustrating thing is I have all the possible instructions given to my AMC about NOT doing what he does:

SS4.thumb.png.a79dba1393a5d21eafecefaf4046a60b.pngSS5.thumb.png.8e0b6495f9d62630fb737e54d5c47716.png

Please help. What am I doing wrong?

Some extra points:

1) "Take More Risks" is on because I want him to take risky passes forward, not on the sides.

2) Maybe increase the passing in the individual instructions? Last time I tried it, all he did was launching the ball towards the corner flag, so the end result was pretty much the same.

3) I don't think overlaps are the problem, those are there more for the FBs since I have both WMs on "sit narrower".

 

Thanks for your attention.

Edited by Kaenhoushaki

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1) Questions to consider: Do your players have the ability or player traits to make a pass like that? Is there someone to pull a defender out to make a through pass in your tactic?

2) I usually discourage people from playing on narrow attacking width especially if they are the more dominating team. In your case, you want your players to make a through ball but if your attack is narrow to start with what space do they have to make the pass?

3) Lowering your tempo and your passing directness is opposite to what you are trying to achieve. On lower tempo and passing directness players will prioritize retaining the ball. I will also suggest add 'Pass into space' if there is space to play in behind.

4) Asking your players to 'Be more disciplined' is also opposite to what you are trying to achieve. Either remove it or add 'Be more expressive'.

5) Can you post your full tactics so that people can give further suggestions? Thank you!

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the reply.

 

1) All the players in midfield/side midfield have at least decent Passing score for the league I'm in, good enough Technique and generally speaking 10ish Anticipation.

2) I read somewhere that Narrow attacks have a higher chance of having through balls, especially together with Exploit the Middle, while Wide is more for crossing and through balls for attackers in 2-3 forwards-related tactics. Do consider I only have one, so ideally I want through balls along the middle of the vertical line.

3) I use Lower Tempo because otherwise, DC/FBs and generally speaking people with poor Passing would try to launch the ball over the top (and no, using Take Fewer Risks isn't enough). Same for Pass into Space, especially considering they usually try to pass the ball diagonally towards the flanks. Technically, I'd want Lower Tempo for the Tiki-taka playstyle between defenders and midfield, then suddenly launch through balls to surprise the opponents.

4) This is a fair point, I think adding Be More Expressive would end in the same issue above. Removing and leaving it blank might help, sure.

5) The rest of the tactic works just fine, no problem with that. The main issue is what I described earlier, I wish for a "Jekill-and-Hyde" tactic: low tempo, shorter passages in the first phase, in order to find the perfect "channel" for the ball, then through balls from the midfielders (wide or central) to the lone striker.

Edited by Kaenhoushaki

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Have you considered asking your players to pass into space as this encourages players to play balls into open spaces for your players to run onto, rather than passing to feet. 

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22 hours ago, Kaenhoushaki said:

Thanks for the reply.

2) I read somewhere that Narrow attacks have a higher chance of having through balls, especially together with Exploit the Middle, while Wide is more for crossing and through balls for attackers in 2-3 forwards-related tactics. Do consider I only have one, so ideally I want through balls along the middle of the vertical line.

I don't know if Narrow attacking width will provide a higher chance of through balls but it will be a problem if your attack is too narrow hence I will like to see your full tactics before I add any suggestions. Wide just means that they will use the wide space more which can help you to open up more space for those through balls to occur. Guardiola always wanted to use the full width of the pitch as much as possible for this exact reason.

 

22 hours ago, Kaenhoushaki said:

I use Lower Tempo because otherwise, DC/FBs and generally speaking people with poor Passing would try to launch the ball over the top (and no, using Take Fewer Risks isn't enough). Same for Pass into Space, especially considering they usually try to pass the ball diagonally towards the flanks. Technically, I'd want Lower Tempo for the Tiki-taka playstyle between defenders and midfield, then suddenly launch through balls to surprise the opponents.

But you have to consider on lower tempo your team moves the ball a bit slower hence allowing the defense more time to settle themselves and deny you any gaps for any through balls. You need to find a balance on it.

 

22 hours ago, Kaenhoushaki said:

The rest of the tactic works just fine, no problem with that. The main issue is what I described earlier, I wish for a "Jekill-and-Hyde" tactic: low tempo, shorter passages in the first phase, in order to find the perfect "channel" for the ball, then through balls from the midfielders (wide or central) to the lone striker.

The key for through balls is one player at the front need to be able to pull a defender out for a gap. Making a through ball with 2 CB following your striker closely and a narrow gap for a pass is going to end up either your striker caught offside or the defender intercepting your pass. Even peak Barcelona need someone like Messi to pull the defenders out to create a gap for their wide forwards to latch on a through ball. The same thing is also applied on the current Manchester City side where they use their wingers to pull the full back out to create a gap for the free 8's to run into.

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This is the holy grail for me. And something that is incredibly diffcult to achieve!

I've found that through balls are more likely to happen when playing against a flat midfield (ie 442). If the opposition are playing with a DM or 2 then it happens far, far more infrequently. The striker is usually marked by both the DCs and the DMs.

If the opposition are sat in then the likelyhood of a through ball is extremely small. The midfielders (AMC especially) will outright refuse to make a small throughball pass and instead focus his passing to the flanks.

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9 minutes ago, jozza800 said:

This is the holy grail for me. And something that is incredibly diffcult to achieve!

I've found that through balls are more likely to happen when playing against a flat midfield (ie 442). If the opposition are playing with a DM or 2 then it happens far, far more infrequently. The striker is usually marked by both the DCs and the DMs.

If the opposition are sat in then the likelyhood of a through ball is extremely small. The midfielders (AMC especially) will outright refuse to make a small throughball pass and instead focus his passing to the flanks.

So true and depending on what league you play in it could be worse. For example in Portugal and Italy you almost always face 1 or 2 DMs and sometimes three at the back. No chance of throughballs.

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1 hour ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Have you considered asking your players to pass into space as this encourages players to play balls into open spaces for your players to run onto, rather than passing to feet. 

Tbf, it won't make that player more likely to pass into space as he's already been asked to do so via PIs.

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yep, i'm playing in Italy and it's a curse! I faced Galatasaray and Lyon in my CL group and they bothed played 442. There were through balls left right and centre!

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, jozza800 said:

yep, i'm playing in Italy and it's a curse! I faced Galatasaray and Lyon in my CL group and they bothed played 442. There were through balls left right and centre!

Yeah I was playing in Portugal and it was such a slog. Now started a save in France with Lille OSC and it's like a difference between night and day in the number of quality chances created.

Edited by crusadertsar

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@Kaenhoushaki, not that it should matter in that example, but what's your tactical familiarity? What may have some effect, are either of those players new-ish players, in that communication may have been an issue?

We're seeing some of the tactic, but what's the Mentality, for instance?

What's the player's attributes? Is he right footed by any chance?

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35 minutes ago, HUNT3R said:

Tbf, it won't make that player more likely to pass into space as he's already been asked to do so via PIs.

Take more risks = pass into space? 

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Just now, fmFutbolManager said:

Take more risks = pass into space? 

Yes. I'm not a fan of using two different terminologies to describe the same thing, but they are the same thing.

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1 minute ago, HUNT3R said:

Yes. I'm not a fan of using two different terminologies to describe the same thing, but they are the same thing.

Sorry to derail, but which takes precedence, the team or player instruction? Obviously, some roles cannot have 'take more risks' selected, and some roles can have 'take fewer risks' selected. If the team instruction is to pass into space but a player instruction is to take fewer risks, what happens? And I assume with both take more risks and pass into space selected this doesn't double up and make me play every pass into space. 

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6 minutes ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Sorry to derail, but which takes precedence, the team or player instruction? Obviously, some roles cannot have 'take more risks' selected, and some roles can have 'take fewer risks' selected. If the team instruction is to pass into space but a player instruction is to take fewer risks, what happens? And I assume with both take more risks and pass into space selected this doesn't double up and make me play every pass into space. 

It won't double up. I don't know how good @herne79's memory is about how it works, but fingers crossed. :)

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Sorry to derail, but which takes precedence, the team or player instruction? Obviously, some roles cannot have 'take more risks' selected, and some roles can have 'take fewer risks' selected. If the team instruction is to pass into space but a player instruction is to take fewer risks, what happens? And I assume with both take more risks and pass into space selected this doesn't double up and make me play every pass into space. 

The hierarchy of precedence has always been  Team I < Player I < Player Traits

Edited by crusadertsar

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You can get some good through balls going with pass into space, high tempo and direct passes as team instructions coupled with a deep line of engagement.

Issue is though that the through balls tend to be from the defenders not the midfielders.

Just a thought and please don't laugh, but id consider playing your midfielder as a libero in a back 3.

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17 minutes ago, crusadertsar said:

The hierarchy of precedence has always been  Team I < Player I < Player Traits

Interesting. So you can make a Complete Wing-Back dribble less (even though they're hardcoded to dribble more) just by using the dribble less team instruction. 

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1 minute ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Interesting. So you can make a Complete Wing-Back dribble less (even though they're hardcoded to dribble more) just by using the dribble less team instruction. 

No, it's the other way round. The CWB will dribbled more despite the Dribble less TI.

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Interesting. So you can make a Complete Wing-Back dribble less (even though they're hardcoded to dribble more) just by using the dribble less team instruction. 

Yeah I forgot I'm pretty sure hard-coded role instructions overrule all. That's why it's always better to operate with more generic roles like a simple wingback or central midfielder.

Edited by crusadertsar

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Familiarity is OK, the issue might be Team Cohesion. I'll try this tactic again when I have better players and/or better teamwork between them.

Thanks for all the tips!

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Posted (edited)

I remember in my save recently seeing several highlights in a row of good through balls, and thought wow I should save this for when the inevitable thread shows up. Well, I didn't, oops.

I might be able to go back to it. 

From my recollection, the key thing I remember that led to it was  CM slot APs was making the passes. I had fairly wide team setting and pass into space ticked on. 

Counter to what most say here, I had a slightly lower temp and lower passing. I don't want the whole team hoofing balls around. It won't ever work. I want the team shuttling the ball around to my playmaker and let him make those types of passes. 

I don't believe that AP has a trait related. I'll check later today and maybe can put up a video. Cheers

Edited by 04texag

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2 minutes ago, 04texag said:

I remember in my save recently seeing several highlights in a row of good through balls, and thought wow I should save this for when the inevitable thread shows up. Well, I didn't, oops.

I might be able to go back to it. 

From my recollection, the key thing I remember that led to it was  CM slot APs was making the passes. I had fairly wide team setting and pass into space ticked on. 

Counter to what most say here, I had a slightly lower temp and lower passing. I don't want the whole team hoofing balls around. It won't ever work. I want the team shuttling the ball around to my playmaker and let him make those types of passes. 

I don't believe that AP has a trait related. I'll check later today and maybe can put up a video. Cheers

THIS. I'm trying to recreate this tactic. Thanks for checking. Are you playing FM19 or 20?

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I'll post a screenshot and more information later. This has always been a quest of mine. Only issue for me now is I had to deviate a little from the tactic as it's my first season in premier league with lots of young up and coming players. I should be able to go back in time and get the videos and tactics screens though. 

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I'll do a thorough work up on this, as I combined a lot from @Ö-zil to the Arsenal! and @crusadertsar ideas and some of my own from past few years. It's a 4141, total football inspired tactic. My playmaker has only one trait, plays killer through balls. It's nacho mendez and year 2022. I've taken Portsmouth up to PL, our first year there. It's been tough. I have a strategy that work and after work tonight I'll maybe try to do a video or a full post on it.

 

Below is just a taste with a video of one goal: 

 

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Here is tactic. It's relatively balanced and got me promoted a few times. That said, it is never static. I make small tweaks every game to slightly shift the point of attack and respond to the other team's threats defensively.

 

1287232097_FM20tactic.thumb.png.5ebfd8d24691716fe831f1bc1228cb2f.png

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Posted (edited)

Nice! I still don't have the trait on any of my playmakers, hope it's gonna improve my chances. Do you use player instructions in addition to the tactic?

 

Also, that's FM20. I'm playing FM19, don't know if the ME is the same.

Edited by Kaenhoushaki

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6 hours ago, HUNT3R said:

What's the player's attributes? Is he right footed by any chance?

I don't think this got mentioned enough or a response from @Kaenhoushaki . 

Tactically I think the option is there for a player with Positive Individual Mentality and Plays Risky Passes PI. I think the player could of made it easier if he dribbled at the defence and drew out a CB but your Less Dribbling will of reduced that options viability.  Higher mentality will increase the risks he takes hence the chance of that pass but would affect many other things, either the players positioning due to role/duty change or team as a whole from a mentality change.

I think the players Attributes, Traits and/or the natural foot to play the pass/cross being weak are likely the biggest cause though.  I notice my backup MCL who is left footed and a all round worse player than the starter passes differently than my right footed starter (with no traits that would affect it).

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10 hours ago, fmFutbolManager said:

Take more risks = pass into space? 

Not literally. Take more risks is solely about through balls trying to unlock the opposition defense, whereas passing into space is a broader instruction applying to any pass that is played in front of a teammate (not just a killer/through ball). For example, a CB can play a pass into space for a FB or WB in his own half. 

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yeah, the through ball is actually hard to play especially if he's not left footed. Being closed down at speed, striker has a marker watching him fairly closely, and he can't just hit it long and rely on the striker's pace because it'll run through to the keeper.

The pass to the winger is relatively easy, although he still screws up [I'm assuming he's not the best passer...]

 

I think the latest version of the ME has a slight bias against high risk through balls anyway to reduce the very high number of one on ones earlier versions, but I think a lot of players wouldn't attempt the through ball in this situation

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This is an interesting discussion and it got me wondering how my Lobanovskyi tactic is doing on this front (when I have time to actually play, that is):

image.thumb.png.bba65224bfb523d24309f30209f2088d.png

I'm pretty happy with that, especially when considering we're playing a plain 442 and most of our games are in the Ukranian league against ultra-defensive teams and our one-on-one conversion rate is still very far from where I want it to be.

You don't necessarily need pass into space and you definitely don't need playmakers. Everything in this game is about roles & duties and using the right players.

In this case you need at least two players who can and will make the through ball and at least two players who can and will get to the end of them.

I think the mistake most people make is expecting the through balls happen from a single combination, like one playmaker to one striker. Think about it: the AI will try and mark your one playmaker out of the game. Your one striker will have at least two defenders on him. I'm not saying play a 442 to make through balls happen, but you gotta have more options. If you don't have roles that will attack space, you won't see many through balls. It's that simple. All the AP's, Mezzala's, IW's, F9's are nice, but you've got to have players (plural!) who can reap the rewards of all that creativity.

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The attributes are decent to good in the passing department, but only just good enough for the Poacher. Very few PTs, they're all kinda vanilla. The core question was more about why the playmaker decided to pass at the WM (regardless of the result) instead of trying a through ball in front, thus following all my instructions. I guess I have to rail then even more into what I want them to do to avoid them behaving in any other way.

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Just scored this goal which reminded me of this thread. 

moreno-1_hd.mp4

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On 15/07/2020 at 14:27, 04texag said:

I'll do a thorough work up on this, as I combined a lot from @Ö-zil to the Arsenal! and @crusadertsar ideas and some of my own from past few years. It's a 4141, total football inspired tactic. My playmaker has only one trait, plays killer through balls. It's nacho mendez and year 2022. I've taken Portsmouth up to PL, our first year there. It's been tough. I have a strategy that work and after work tonight I'll maybe try to do a video or a full post on it.

 

Below is just a taste with a video of one goal: 

 

Looks liek you were playing against a 442. These passes almost never happen when playing against anything else.

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I've just started paying attention to this again. I'll have to dig around some more and see how often I'm getting through balls against other formations. 

 

I get them often enough but my strikers have been garbage this year so not getting the goals, which means it's harder to go back and find the replays. Still wanting to do a feature or something on this soon. 

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Posted (edited)

It may be an issue with your Look for Overlap instructions. Rather than looking to play through the defence, the midfielders and/or striker will hold up the ball and look for a player on the flanks. This instruction will overall tell your team to focus their play down the flanks and so your primary penetration will be from crosses and cutbacks, not through balls.

If you want your back line to play shorter and less risky but your midfielders to play more direct and more risky, you can set your team passing to default then edit individual instructions to give that effect.

Set tempo to default
Turn off look for overlap
Adjust individual instructions for passing length

Edited by permanentquandary

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On 15/07/2020 at 14:29, 04texag said:

Here is tactic. It's relatively balanced and got me promoted a few times. That said, it is never static. I make small tweaks every game to slightly shift the point of attack and respond to the other team's threats defensively.

 

1287232097_FM20tactic.thumb.png.5ebfd8d24691716fe831f1bc1228cb2f.png

Think your tactic is functioning as intended. It is wingplay.

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1 hour ago, denen123 said:

Think your tactic is functioning as intended. It is wingplay.

Well honestly looking at his tactic, I don't think it's functioning as it should if he is getting alot of wingplay. From the roles and team instructions it actually looks like a good progressive possession tactic and not a wingplay tactic. Maybe if he is facing packed defenses the ball is being diverted to the wings?

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It's not a wing play tactic at all, and not what I get. That was posted as an example of a possession tactic that gets through balls. I'm not sure where his comment is coming from. 

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5 minutes ago, 04texag said:

It's not a wing play tactic at all, and not what I get. That was posted as an example of a possession tactic that gets through balls. I'm not sure where his comment is coming from. 

If he thinks that yours is a wingplay tactic then I would love to see what he sees as a possession tactic :lol:

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Definitely nothing to do with a wing-play (not in the slightest). 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, crusadertsar said:

Well honestly looking at his tactic, I don't think it's functioning as it should if he is getting alot of wingplay. From the roles and team instructions it actually looks like a good progressive possession tactic and not a wingplay tactic. Maybe if he is facing packed defenses the ball is being diverted to the wings?

I expect that when he faces packed defenses(which is a lot of teams when you start improving), as you've said,a lot of wide play will occur. 

As he has said, it works very well for him to get narrower play, so i stand corrected.

Edited by denen123

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I think what irritates me is that players dont even try to play a through ball.

In my current save I've only seen through balls against 442s. They just dont happen against 4-2-3-1 or 4-1-2-3.

There's moments in games where I'll just hang my head as a player (usually the AM just drift the ball wide to a fullback) and ignores the AF. It really makes the game quite mechanical in terms of the system overiding the players attributes/ability.

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Could also be an issue because of a single striker? 

Does anyone have better luck playing with 2 strikers? It would give the players behind them more to aim for? 

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I've seen multiple thru balls to a single striker this week, and since the comment before, each time I've checked to make sure of the formation I was playing against. One was a 4231 and another was a 4123.

I don't remember if they ended up being goals. 

Another one was from a CM to the AML on IFs duty. 

Through balls can happen but you need the right setup. One thing that has helped recently is I have really dialed back my LB and RB. I've put them on automatic, as that removes the get further forward from support duty, and in difficult games I've even checked the PI hold position. 

This causes the backs to sit further back and help recycle possession, not drive forward in build up play. Since they are not doing this anymore, my attacking midfielders have been much more positive in their play and made more runs. 

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The problem occurs when people tend to get obsessed with achieving one specific aspect of play (such as through balls in this case), rather than looking to create a good tactic as a whole. So they usually neither get that particular thing (e.g. through balls) nor a good tactic overall.

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22 minutes ago, Experienced Defender said:

The problem occurs when people tend to get obsessed with achieving one specific aspect of play (such as through balls in this case), rather than looking to create a good tactic as a whole. So they usually neither get that particular thing (e.g. through balls) nor a good tactic overall.

I'm certainly guilty of that! 

However, I will say that certain aspects of play that are prevelent in real football should be there in any tactic. Through balls are a major action of a match, along with dribbling, crossing, tackling etc. 

I'm not a fan of needing a particular and very specific set up to achieve these actions. 

If I want my fullback to cross at every opportunity then he should do so. If the forward isn't in the right position to get on the end of it then I need to change his instructions. 

Same goes with through balls. If I instruct my AMC to play through balls to the forward he should do so, if they keep getting cut out or going out of play etc then I know that it's not working and I can adjust accordingly. 

Having the players do something (or not do something) to contrary of what you've asked can be incredibly confusing, as it could be a miriad of reasons as to why a certain instruction is not being carried out. 

You only have to look at these sorts of threads and the numerous options people offer up as solutions to see the kind of confusion it causes. 

I understand why SI make the game and its instructions a little fuzzy but I think for certain actions in the tactics and match engine it needs to be a little more input a = output a. 

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2 minutes ago, jozza800 said:

I'm certainly guilty of that! 

However, I will say that certain aspects of play that are prevelent in real football should be there in any tactic. Through balls are a major action of a match, along with dribbling, crossing, tackling etc. 

I'm not a fan of needing a particular and very specific set up to achieve these actions. 

If I want my fullback to cross at every opportunity then he should do so. If the forward isn't in the right position to get on the end of it then I need to change his instructions. 

Same goes with through balls. If I instruct my AMC to play through balls to the forward he should do so, if they keep getting cut out or going out of play etc then I know that it's not working and I can adjust accordingly. 

Having the players do something (or not do something) to contrary of what you've asked can be incredibly confusing, as it could be a miriad of reasons as to why a certain instruction is not being carried out. 

You only have to look at these sorts of threads and the numerous options people offer up as solutions to see the kind of confusion it causes. 

I understand why SI make the game and its instructions a little fuzzy but I think for certain actions in the tactics and match engine it needs to be a little more input a = output a. 

I think there's a degree of unrealistic expectations here. A defense splitting through ball is not something that's very common or easy to do, especially against a defense that's sitting very deep. and it is certainly not seen as much as something simple like dribbling, crossing or tackling. Sometimes I do believe there's a bit of a reluctance of players to play the more vertical passes into space, but I feel that is also a product of the 2D view making me spot those passes much easier than it would be for a player on the pitch. Also, are you sure the player is not attempting those passes and the game just won't show it to you? I find that even on comprehensive highlights the game won't show intercepted or overhit through balls, instead it prefers to show a whole lot of pointless and stupid offsides. If you go to the analysis screen on your player in question you can see more clearly if he's really not attempting it, for example, my AM:

Gcd6C.png

 

In this screen you can also click on the pass to see the highlight. The two deeper ones are free kicks so I'll ignore that, but the other three were attempted through balls that just got intercepted. The one on the right the striker stopped his run right before the pass was made making it easy for the defender to pick up, the two central ones closest to the box would've put my winger one on one if not intercepted by the defender. The game didn't show me any of those highlights despite being on comprehensive highlights.

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That is a great point about what the game is or is not showing you, and good stuff showing the analysis screen on how to find it. Solid

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