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Rudi Garcia's Lille and Total Football on A Budget


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Yes, Total Football is possible with low budget. I made Roma champions of Italy, won Copa Italia and Europa League in the first season pretty much without transfers. Only got Kurzawa in January as he was transfer listed for cheap price. 

I like the simplicity approach you will be going for. However, in order to control possession you know your team needs to win the ball back. For that to happen, I have found that I need a specific set of Team Instructions at a minimum. 

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, yonko said:

Yes, Total Football is possible with low budget. I made Roma champions of Italy, won Copa Italia and Europa League in the first season pretty much without transfers. Only got Kurzawa in January as he was transfer listed for cheap price. 

I like the simplicity approach you will be going for. However, in order to control possession you know your team needs to win the ball back. For that to happen, I have found that I need a specific set of Team Instructions at a minimum. 

Yeah for sure I'm not going for complete blank slate approach that's for sure. Unlike @Deego619 s 442 which is easy to set up for crossing game, you need a bit more to make 4-1-2-3 into fluid possession system. Will need to specify pressing and defensive line height and line of engagement. Those i have no choice but to select. But I'm still looking for no more than 5-7 team instructions overall.

Edited by crusadertsar
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Looks good mate :)
Will be interesting to see how you recreate Hazard. That Lille team was so good and built in a very exciting and clever way, not far away (-results) from the team they have today.

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Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, Djuicer said:

Looks good mate :)
Will be interesting to see how you recreate Hazard. That Lille team was so good and built in a very exciting and clever way, not far away (-results) from the team they have today.

That's what excited me when looking at the current squad! It's equivalent or better for most positions when comparing with old screenshots from fm11. Except for Hazard :lol: Although the French league is not quite the same, as now we have the seemingly unstoppable monster that is PSG. So it will definitely make for an exciting save. Thanks for following.

Edited by crusadertsar
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3 hours ago, crusadertsar said:

Yeah for sure I'm not going for complete blank slate approach that's for sure. Unlike @Deego619 s 442 which is easy to set up for crossing game, you need a bit more to make 4-1-2-3 into fluid possession system. Will need to specify pressing and defensive line height and line of engagement. Those i have no choice but to select. But I'm still looking for no more than 5-7 team instructions overall.

For me the mandatory instructions for the style are:

Shorter Passing or Much Shorter Passing

Play Out Of Defense 

Work Ball Into Box

Counter-Press

Hold Position

Higher or Much Higher D-Line 

Higher or Much Higher LOE

Extremely Urgent 

 

That's 8 Team Instructions. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, yonko said:

For me the mandatory instructions for the style are:

Shorter Passing or Much Shorter Passing

Play Out Of Defense 

Work Ball Into Box

Counter-Press

Hold Position

Higher or Much Higher D-Line 

Higher or Much Higher LOE

Extremely Urgent 

 

That's 8 Team Instructions. 

My thinking exactly! Except without hold position and with added slower tempo. What's your reasoning for hold position? Doesn't it kinda go against high pressing possession style?

Also thinking of removing Work Ball into the box as I don't find it makes that much difference when playing with slow tempo and on balanced team mentality.

Edited by crusadertsar
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@yonko Thanks for the advise. It makes much sense. I think I'll try hold position instead of slow  tempo because it's really the transition where I need to slow things down. Then I like to think that my players are good enough to make the right choice in final third, so I will continue without selecting WBIB. Don't want to overdue it and lose penetration factor, especially with hold position and much shorter passing there already. 

I will post an update sooner than expected because results have been so good :D. I really think that going for a simpler approach makes a big difference in FM20! 

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That was a great team, I remember them well. Hazard was the superstar, but the exceptional work rate of the midfield three and the complete full-backs (who often played almost like wingers) made the system tick. I'm interested to see how you pull it off.

Also, are you planning to go back to Dynamo Kyiv sometime? I'm having so much fun with them.

Edited by Enzo_Francescoli
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3 hours ago, crusadertsar said:

@yonko Thanks for the advise. It makes much sense. I think I'll try hold position instead of slow  tempo because it's really the transition where I need to slow things down. Then I like to think that my players are good enough to make the right choice in final third, so I will continue without selecting WBIB. Don't want to overdue it and lose penetration factor, especially with hold position and much shorter passing there already. 

I will post an update sooner than expected because results have been so good :D. I really think that going for a simpler approach makes a big difference in FM20! 

Just for clarification as I noticed I've used the wrong term. It's Hold Shape not Hold Position. Oops :D But here is the description of the instruction:

1535304011_ScreenShot2020-07-18at12_13_35AM.thumb.png.249b75fa25929068aee3ab43eec36167.png

It says it all really. 

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Posted (edited)
35 minutes ago, yonko said:

Just for clarification as I noticed I've used the wrong term. It's Hold Shape not Hold Position. Oops :D But here is the description of the instruction:

1535304011_ScreenShot2020-07-18at12_13_35AM.thumb.png.249b75fa25929068aee3ab43eec36167.png

It says it all really. 

Haha no me too used wrong term, I understood that you meant Hold Shape from the transition instructions. I think its also similar to the old "retain possession" option

Edited by crusadertsar
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1 hour ago, ferrarinseb said:

@yonko

That's a really superb explanation on hold shape.

Thanks, but that is just a screenshot of the In Game description of Hold Shape instruction. 

1 hour ago, crusadertsar said:

Haha no me too used wrong term, I understood that you meant Hold Shape from the transition instructions. I think its also similar to the old "retain possession" option

Perhaps, I don't know. The old "Retain Possession" was instruction with the ball as we didn't have In Transition instructions before. Hold Shape seems to directly influence how players behave when transitioning after winning the ball. Similarly Counter Press makes players chase after the ball when losing possession, much like Pep's famous 6 seconds rule.

Maybe someone from SI would know and can comment. 

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Posted (edited)

So this is my current tactic. I tried to really  go for the absolute essential minimum to create Lille's vintage possession with intent style. Thanks to some of you, including @yonko for the helpful advise.

 

Tactic.thumb.png.09b3273358ce43625b9addb685462a63.png

It still has 8 Team instructions. But they are really the ones needed for this style. 

The start to the season couldn't have been better! I know its only a handfull of games but the types of goals (open play) and the number of chances we are creating are really encouraging, especially as I continue to watch more games. The only slip happened in the last game against the stubborn Angers side. They really parked a tank trying to stop us and we were probably going to draw that game but then my rightback got injured and were left with only 10. Their last 5 minute goal was a heartbreaker. And now we have a tough series of games, including PSG at home and Barca in Champions League. Will have to try to pick ourselves up and make the best of it. The real test of the tactic is coming up!

Resultd.thumb.png.4bfbc2fe3bf8c3dade3d99f933f8d91c.png

Oh, and almost forgot this is my "Hazard" player :cool:

Player.thumb.png.c1a0b19b38cffc52d8b200079a29aa53.png

Maybe not quite the same level as Eden was in 2010. But Angel definitely has the potential to develop into a similar style of attacking playmaker. And two League goals to start off is not too shabby. Excited to monitor his development for the rest of the season. 

More updates will come as I test the tactic further. 

Edited by crusadertsar
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6 hours ago, Enzo_Francescoli said:

That was a great team, I remember them well. Hazard was the superstar, but the exceptional work rate of the midfield three and the complete full-backs (who often played almost like wingers) made the system tick. I'm interested to see how you pull it off.

Also, are you planning to go back to Dynamo Kyiv sometime? I'm having so much fun with them.

Going back to Ukraine would always be fun. I really enjoyed my Dynamo save in FM19. I guess I was just little disappointed how the league got weaker and less competitive since the troubles in the east started. Used to be one of the funnest leagues to play with the big three of Dynamo, Shakhtar and Dnipro. Now its just about breaking The Miners monopoly. It could still have potential as you play longer in it and more newgens appear. Also I'm still interested in doing a Maslov-inspired article eventually so going back to Dynamo is not out of the question. Just not sure whether it will be on this version of FM or another. 

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22 hours ago, crusadertsar said:

Going back to Ukraine would always be fun. I really enjoyed my Dynamo save in FM19. I guess I was just little disappointed how the league got weaker and less competitive since the troubles in the east started. Used to be one of the funnest leagues to play with the big three of Dynamo, Shakhtar and Dnipro. Now its just about breaking The Miners monopoly. It could still have potential as you play longer in it and more newgens appear. Also I'm still interested in doing a Maslov-inspired article eventually so going back to Dynamo is not out of the question. Just not sure whether it will be on this version of FM or another. 

I'm very disappointed by the quality of Ukranian newgens. I now probably have one of the greatest youth setups in the world, so hopefully that changes, and I get my next Shevchenko.

On topic: I'm very surprised by your choice of tactics for that Lille team. I would probably go in a very different direction. Hope it goes well, though, and I wish you a fun save.

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34 minutes ago, Enzo_Francescoli said:

I'm very disappointed by the quality of Ukranian newgens. I now probably have one of the greatest youth setups in the world, so hopefully that changes, and I get my next Shevchenko.

On topic: I'm very surprised by your choice of tactics for that Lille team. I would probably go in a very different direction. Hope it goes well, though, and I wish you a fun save.

Yeah I never got my next Shevchenko in my last Dynamo save either. 

I am trying to recreate that specific formation from 10 years ago and seemed suitable to their current squad. How would you set them up?

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32 minutes ago, crusadertsar said:

Yeah I never got my next Shevchenko in my last Dynamo save either. 

I am trying to recreate that specific formation from 10 years ago and seemed suitable to their current squad. How would you set them up?

Well, I would probably start with something like this, see how it goes:

image.thumb.png.e0c7d5d25642efc2735adfccaa523ad9.png

Gervinho either IW(s), IW(a) or IF(s), whichever works best. Balmont either a CAR or a BBM, but he surely supported Debuchy, and had playmaking abilities. Same for Cabaye, only he was a bit more adventurous. Neither of them was an outright PM though, that was Hazard. Mavuba was the defensive pivot. All three had great work rate, teamwork, stamina.

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Posted (edited)
42 minutes ago, Enzo_Francescoli said:

Well, I would probably start with something like this, see how it goes:

image.thumb.png.e0c7d5d25642efc2735adfccaa523ad9.png

Gervinho either IW(s), IW(a) or IF(s), whichever works best. Balmont either a CAR or a BBM, but he surely supported Debuchy, and had playmaking abilities. Same for Cabaye, only he was a bit more adventurous. Neither of them was an outright PM though, that was Hazard. Mavuba was the defensive pivot. All three had great work rate, teamwork, stamina.

Interesting! Again i am probably taking some liberties to fit the current team better. I simply have more playmakers in midfield. Also I actually play Gomes as left Trequartista but then Bamba is more of an IF.

Also from gamey perspective, when playing on balanced I need more aggressive roles in middle to create penetration or otherwise our attack ends up being too toothless as we pass the ball around just to keep possession.

On the team Cabaye was probably the best midfield playmaker in my opinion. And I agree that his midfield partner Balmont was more of a BBM. And that how what I originally played there, but mezzala moves that much better in my formation.

So far we are doing not too bad. Sitting second after PSG as of the beginning of October.

Edited by crusadertsar
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Posted (edited)

Rudi Garcia's Pressing Game and Midfield Trio Role

 

Fm6r7JJ.png.a041248af5cd4966e5982f3c83261f28.png 

As I mentioned earlier, Garcia's Lille's played more like a narrow 4-1-2-1-2 (or even 3-2-5 in-possession). This was due to the movement of Eden Hazard, who cut into the zone between the strikers and midfield. While the right winger, Gervinho moved forward and narrow to join Sow at the front. At the same time the two wingbacks got involved in attack by bombing forward and wide almost like wingers. Or old-fashioned Brazilian wingbacks. While Emerson (playing like a true-to-name Brazilian wingback) was probably the more attacking of the two, both would often reach the byline and ping crosses and lay-offs to the strikers and central midfielders. 

And speaking of the central midfielders, they were key in Garcia's formation. There was Mavuba - the more defensive holding midfielder and the two supporting midfielders of Cabaye and Balmont. The key aspect of the formation was the when these two more offensive midfielders pushed forward and got involved in high pressing (really defending from the front) the defensive holder had to stay back and help the centrebacks. It provided balance in what was otherwise a rather aggressive attacking formation. Something not that different from Vertical Tiki Taka that Sarri's Napoli would play a decade later. 

Thus relatively High Line of Defence and High Engagement Line were essential to Lille's game plan. It helped that the two central midfielders were very technical, but their high workrate was what matter more. Starting with the strikers and the central midfielders, the whole team tried to meet opposition's attack high up the field. The pressing started in the opponent’s half. I chose extremely urgent closing down to compliment the High DL and High LOE. 

The Midfield Roles

As a holding DM Mavuba focused on covering the central position in front of and between the central defender. Like when the  central defenders went high and wide to help support the full-back. Some might think that the half-back role might be more suitable here but  I am currently enjoying the creativity that DLP (even on Defend duty) brings to the team. Especially with a player like Xeka in the position. 

 

Xeka.thumb.png.f37bfe59363be9633a49db3818314c51.png

To me the role of Balmont is better recreated as a dynamic Mezzala, because I envision him as player that needed to get up high up to press and support the right fullback. But also he needed to be more pro-active and attack-oriented to help with the attack by moving into the right half-space and staying closer to the opposition penalty area. A bit like Guardiola's hybrid Free Eight role. 

8-275674-yohan-cabaye.thumb.jpg.9169755bdfa551c2eeb5392e70414e70.jpg

At 2010 Lille, Cabaye was also this type of Free Eight role that created from the front and pressed relentlessly. He was definitely more creative of the two, thus I chose Advanced Playmaker on Attack. Rather than a RPM or DLP, because I neither wanted my "Cabaye" player to roam around too much or be too static holding his position. 

Untitled.thumb.png.14579bdabb730ecea158b2baa4f54816.png

Yucuf Yazici, of current Lille squad, was my perfect Cabaye. Already had 5 assists two months into our campaign. And might have even developed into a better player. 

Until this happened on one fateful night at the start of October. 

Injuredd.thumb.png.f52f64c37e9074d1c8359e978308bc12.png

I never like to write off a young player due to long-term injury... but 10 months does seem kind of long :( 

So the search is on for his replacement and my "Cabaye" successor. Or do I even need a "successor"? Maybe not. Not when the original is still around and kicking.

 

Untitled2.png

Thank you God for The French League 1 Joker Transfer clause. The season might still turn out alright. Just look at those attributes and traits! And besides being a great mentor for the youngsters, he only cost me 1.5 million. 

Edited by crusadertsar
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Re Rudi Garcia: I know this topic is on his Lille side from back in the day but his tactics with Roma that first year for me was awesome. With Totti as a F9, Gervinho in a IF/a or RMD/a role on the RW. Llajic as IW/IF. Roma also had one of the best CD pairings in Serie A w/ Benatia & Castan + the ageless wonder Maicon on RB. 

Now with midfield @crusadertsar think you're pretty spot on with how Rudi set up Lille.  Esp using more of the AP/a to replicate that free #8 role.

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On 18/07/2020 at 20:13, crusadertsar said:

So this is my current tactic. I tried to really  go for the absolute essential minimum to create Lille's vintage possession with intent style. Thanks to some of you, including @yonko for the helpful advise.

 

Tactic.thumb.png.09b3273358ce43625b9addb685462a63.png

 

I really like the idea behind this tactic, but i was a bit surprise with the forwards role. I was expecting more a DLF(a) to link more between both wide players and the midfield.

Why did you choose the PF(a)?

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Keyzer Soze said:

I really like the idea behind this tactic, but i was a bit surprise with the forwards role. I was expecting more a DLF(a) to link more between both wide players and the midfield.

Why did you choose the PF(a)?

I tried both actually. And I found that surprisingly Pressing Forward actually sat deeper than a DLF(a). It's a very hard working role, similar to shadow striker that covers a lot of ground. You need the right kind of player for it though, one that might not be necessarily the most technical but with good mentals. Victor Osimhen is just perfect for it. He actually assists more than he scores haha. 

Usually I would be playing with a False9 or Trequartista in the striker role but the current Lille team doesn't really have a suitable player. It could also be argued that Moussa Sow wasn't very technical and was more of a Pressing Forward.

Edited by crusadertsar
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Simplistic, a man after my own heart.

That Lille team has almost been forgotten about these days, a great side indeed. 

Cool that you picked up the real Cabaye! 

I found that the simplistic method works best after you give the players some time to gel. Results won't always be min-max but it does take some of the stress away from the tactical side of this game! 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Deego619 said:

Simplistic, a man after my own heart.

That Lille team has almost been forgotten about these days, a great side indeed. 

Cool that you picked up the real Cabaye! 

I found that the simplistic method works best after you give the players some time to gel. Results won't always be min-max but it does take some of the stress away from the tactical side of this game! 

The KISS ("Keep It Simple Stupid") method seems to be working wonders so far!

Although drawing 1-1 against Barcelona and beating Borussia Dortmund 3-2 Away had been anything but not stressful. 

Very proud of our 2nd position in the league too. While could not stop from getting beaten by PSG so far, we did manage to beat Monaco 3-1 Away and Marseille 2-0 at Home. Definitely some of the highlights so far. 

8B588A129B23F390345DB19AE3BA1C17C24415DD (1600×900)

Edited by crusadertsar
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Lille must have awesome full-backs if they can pull off CWB(a) without crashing and burning the whole system. I'd never use that role unless I have the second coming of Roberto Carlos on my team and could build the entire tactic around him. How are you finding their contributions, offensively and defensively? The results are certainly great so far!

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Enzo_Francescoli said:

Lille must have awesome full-backs if they can pull off CWB(a) without crashing and burning the whole system. I'd never use that role unless I have the second coming of Roberto Carlos on my team and could build the entire tactic around him. How are you finding their contributions, offensively and defensively? The results are certainly great so far!

Sometimes taking little risks pays off. My idea was that Rudi really created width at Lille through the fullbacks a bit like Guardiola. And luckily current Lille team has some good ones. Here they are, my Greco-Turkish Connection:

6D0867E7506EC64DB4C94E51E1E4A9156B5949DD (1600×900)

19E4EE5270D013AB36E2D78108340B87E74A1879 (1600×900)

I'm rather proud of Tsimikas. Was a 4 million dollar acquisition from Olympiakos. And as you can see you do need very good wingbacks. Mine might not be worldbeaters but they are good enough to play this demanding role. The whole tactic pretty much relies on them stretching the playing field.

Edited by crusadertsar
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56 minutes ago, crusadertsar said:

Sometimes taking little risks pays off. My idea was that Rudi really created width at Lille through the fullbacks a bit like Guardiola. And luckily current Lille team has some good ones. Here they are, my Greco-Turkish Connection:

6D0867E7506EC64DB4C94E51E1E4A9156B5949DD (1600×900)

19E4EE5270D013AB36E2D78108340B87E74A1879 (1600×900)

I'm rather proud Tsimikas. Was a 4 million dollar acquisition from Olympiakos. And as you can see you do need very good wingbacks. Mine might not be worldbeaters but they are good enough to play this demanding role. The whole tactic pretty much relies on them stretching the playing field.

Whoa, those are great players indeed. A little work on Tsimikas' decision making and Celik's agility and vision and they're ready tp play that role in Ligue 1.

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