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Dealing with those pesky defensive possession heavy sides


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1 hour ago, herne79 said:

If I have my players running around pressing like their lives depend on it they can very quickly find themselves caught out of position (that word again), leaving passing lanes open and so opposition defenders + midfielders donk the ball around between each other while I'm chasing my tail.  Of course on the flip side if I give them too much time on the ball they'll do the same anyway.  There is a balance to be found

:applause::thup:

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If youre playing a side that are camping because youre better than them, sometimes youre just as well to match them up shape wise but swap DMs for AMs if theyre sitting 2 players back in the DM spots, and use the individual talent in 1v1 battles to win.

Im playing a tactic as Juve that shouldnt "work" with regards to pressing, but it does by matching opponents up and winning individual contests.

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23 minutes ago, _mxrky said:

Good thread

My issue is: 

Defensive possession heavy sides don’t exist in real life (or at least not in the manner portrayed in this game). So people rightfully complain that the ai plays in such a manner

I understand what you're saying however that is completely irrelevant to both this thread and indeed this entire forum.  Whether or not this type of opponent should or shouldn't be in the game is a complete non-issue here.  The issue is that these opponents are (rightly or wrongly) in the game and thus we as managers need to find ways to deal with them.

If people want to debate (or complain) about their existence in game that has absolutely nothing to do with the tactics forum :thup:.

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I am not sure if Im offending anyone here, especially the mods. 

Thats lower league which you are talking about. 

I am very sure most of us who is having this problem is that we are managing a "superclub".

I did read your thread before, which is insightful, but you are managing West Ham. To me, thats not a big club in the start of the game unless you are very deep into your save. 

I know your purpose of opening this thread, because of recent threads/posts complaining about the possession. I, myself face this issue. I did complain once or twice and I chose to adapt, to a little of success which can be improved. 

So, may I humbly request the mods to show a "superclub" example of how can we overcome this issue. 

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So - you used a cautious mentality to play more attacking football?  I have never tried this but could be the difference in me throwing this game in the bin or actually enjoying it.

When moving to cautious, did you change any of the roles?  i.e to make them more attacking or just leave them as they are - trying to understand how you can penetrate defences - I can see why a lower mentality would increase possession......

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Less a 'superclub' thing, as I started getting extreme bus-parking in year 4 with Brighton, and more the expectations of the opposition's ability to defend.

Even a relegation fodder Prem side is going to have defenders substantially better than League 1, so I wouldn't necessarily expect that CD to come pegging it out like they do here... or does the assumed increase in ability of your attacking side in a higher league mitigate that?

Say we peg London RB as a 5/10 and Wycombe a 3/10, where as in the Prem league that could be an 8/10 attacking a 5/10? So the behavior would largely be the same.

As I posted in that closed thread, I went the bus-crashing route and it worked, as opposed to waiting at the bus-stop... hmm, not sure the 2nd part of the analogy works :-)... but next season I will try and give the subtle approach another go.

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Good thread. Plus, it's obvious why this thread was opened. Would just add that mentality change(even though may have in built or hard coded changes) generally affect width, Tempo & passing directness. This implies that one can utilize higher mentalities while still maintaining a desired tempo to maximize possession. So good job.

However, like most have implied, teams that are "cautious" by virtue of your improved/already assumed reputation do have possession advantage. I personally do not believe in the possession obsession(It is popular in modern day football, so i understand. It is annoying, anyway), but it'll be rather dismissive to place blame, solely, on people's "bad tactics"(even though it isn't said, it has been implied, multiple times across threads) rather than the game having issues. 

So Yes, we do need to adjust, yes we do need to think more. But if more threads like these are put out, the context of where the game has "failed" & the fact that tactical suggestions are being offered to mitigate that effect should be highlighted.

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1 hour ago, Fieldsy said:

So - you used a cautious mentality to play more attacking football?  I have never tried this but could be the difference in me throwing this game in the bin or actually enjoying it.

When moving to cautious, did you change any of the roles?  i.e to make them more attacking or just leave them as they are - trying to understand how you can penetrate defences - I can see why a lower mentality would increase possession......

If you have a high line and urgent pressing - assuming you do - those won't go away, but as he says there will be less full bore AAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!! charges at defenders.

It's kind of the reverse of playing on the counter but setting mentality to attacking, to help make sure your counter attacks have some cutting edge to them.

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The build up to that goal is enough to send me to sleep :D:D (I'm 100% a get the ball, get it forward, score guy). But it is nice to see this sort of thing being demonstrated, and dealing nicely with the low block play keep ball defensive teams. This is essentially the opposite of what I do with these teams. I just let them have the ball but do not let them have it in my half, so they can never actually create chances. 

I really enjoy how you have players in the correct areas of the pitch to allow your wide players to sensibly recycle the ball when there is not a good crossing chance as well. This is something that I think a lot of people struggle with. 

5 hours ago, herne79 said:

But now lets head back to what I was mentioning about being overly aggressive.  If I have my players running around pressing like their lives depend on it they can very quickly find themselves caught out of position (that word again), leaving passing lanes open and so opposition defenders + midfielders donk the ball around between each other while I'm chasing my tail.  Of course on the flip side if I give them too much time on the ball they'll do the same anyway.  There is a balance to be found.

This is the most important piece of info I have seen posted here for a while. It is spot on. You need to balance pressing players and marking passing lanes. The latter is not something you can really set players to do in FM. In that there is no option. If I were to desire any followup for this thread, it would be a more detailed description of this idea and how it can be implemented. I think a lot of people would find that interesting and useful. 

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2 hours ago, skyline72 said:

I am not sure if Im offending anyone here, especially the mods. 

Thats lower league which you are talking about. 

I am very sure most of us who is having this problem is that we are managing a "superclub".

I did read your thread before, which is insightful, but you are managing West Ham. To me, thats not a big club in the start of the game unless you are very deep into your save. 

I know your purpose of opening this thread, because of recent threads/posts complaining about the possession. I, myself face this issue. I did complain once or twice and I chose to adapt, to a little of success which can be improved. 

So, may I humbly request the mods to show a "superclub" example of how can we overcome this issue. 

No offence at all.

It's important to understand that it's the exact same principle.  It doesn't matter if it's lower league or elite league, the same principles still apply.

In another save I am deep into West Ham.  We've won multiple Premier League titles and Champions League trophies.  We're the biggest club in the world with the highest reputation and some of the best players.  Just about every team I play plays cautiously against me.  And yet I play the game in the exact same way that I do in the lower leagues, using these principles which Cleon originally laid out and I discussed in those other threads.

Hell, even Man Utd line up "cautiously" against me...

npx0sBK.png

1 hour ago, Fieldsy said:

So - you used a cautious mentality to play more attacking football?  I have never tried this but could be the difference in me throwing this game in the bin or actually enjoying it.

When moving to cautious, did you change any of the roles?  i.e to make them more attacking or just leave them as they are - trying to understand how you can penetrate defences - I can see why a lower mentality would increase possession......

I wouldn't say I changed mentality to be more attacking, rather to make better and more effective use of space when attacking.  I would stress that it's situational - it won't work all the time - this is nothing more than (as I said above) an idea which some may find useful.

No I didn't change any roles.  The only change was mentality.  In this example my Positive Mentality wasn't working effectively so I switched to something which should improve a patient build up style, rather than something a bit more gung ho.  And that goal is nothing if not patient :p.

4 minutes ago, sporadicsmiles said:

This is essentially the opposite of what I do with these teams. I just let them have the ball but do not let them have it in my half, so they can never actually create chances. 

Yup exactly.  The above is just one idea given a certain style of play.  If others want to chip in with other ideas that can only be beneficial :thup:.

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I wanted to try a save based on this principles but I don't seem to find a suitable team? I tried Leverkusen in the Bundesliga but they play against the two weakest teams in Paderborn and Dusseldorf in the first two matchdays and even those don't play as defensive as shown here. I did a save simulating the first season, but none of the teams I'd have thought of seems to struggle with possession as much as I'd thought based on what I've read on here. Bayern, Ajax, Benfica/Porto, Celtic, Salzburg, Kobenhavn, nobody who I'd have thought that they'd play a lot against systems like this seems to have problems with possession like this, all averaging about 60% and having 65-70 regularly in games against weak teams. So would I really need to take a team and first play with them a few seasons, so the reputation goes up and everybody wants to defend like in this West Ham?

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40 minutes ago, SleepyJoe said:

I tried Leverkusen in the Bundesliga but they play against the two weakest teams in Paderborn and Dusseldorf in the first two matchdays and even those don't play as defensive as shown here. I did a save simulating the first season, but none of the teams I'd have thought of seems to struggle with possession as much as I'd thought based on what I've read on here.

I'm sure the AI and ME can be improved in this respect, but then again so can how people play against such teams.  If you don't see the issue (not everyone does - I don't) then don't worry about it, crack on and enjoy your own possession hungry team :).

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1 hour ago, herne79 said:

I'm sure the AI and ME can be improved in this respect, but then again so can how people play against such teams.  If you don't see the issue (not everyone does - I don't) then don't worry about it, crack on and enjoy your own possession hungry team :).

I see the problem, especially compared to real-life, and had it happen to myself regularly but what I wanted to do is do a save and consistently play with the principles you laid down here.

So I simmed a season to see in which country this problem occurs the most, but as I said it seems that in the AI vs. AI games SI seems to have mostly fixed it. In FM18 or 19 you'd have Pep's City have 40% at home against bad teams as players experience now.

I think I'll try Celtic as they should be facing very cautious teams the most and have a few CL qualification rounds against lesser teams as well. But honestly it seems it's dependent on the manager stats and team philosophy as for example at the beginning of this FM I played with Ajax and enjoyed 65-70 in games where you"d expect these numbers regularly and this without going to stuff like sacrificing WBs to get more pressure up front.

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On 21/08/2020 at 23:31, herne79 said:

Yup exactly.  The above is just one idea given a certain style of play.  If others want to chip in with other ideas that can only be beneficial :thup:.

Agreed. I would love to hear what other people have tried. I especially would not mind hearing about what people have tried that did not work so well too. Negative results are as important as positive ones.

9 hours ago, SleepyJoe said:

I think I'll try Celtic as they should be facing very cautious teams the most and have a few CL qualification rounds against lesser teams as well. But honestly it seems it's dependent on the manager stats and team philosophy as for example at the beginning of this FM I played with Ajax and enjoyed 65-70 in games where you"d expect these numbers regularly and this without going to stuff like sacrificing WBs to get more pressure up front.

It is pretty easy to get high possession in the ME though, you just do what the AI does and keep it around your defence forever. Having high possession and having the ball in a dangerous area is a different challenge altogether. You should share how you did it, the more ideas the merrier!

7 hours ago, Mr Greenleaf said:

correct

Even if the ME could produce football identical to real life we would still moan about it, I am sure. 

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I am very much interested in your pressing setup. Like which d-line, LOE you play against these teams. Also whether tight marking or not or aggressive tackling or not. I kinda have the problem with pressing against these teams as they often tend to keep the ball in their own third... 

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2 horas atrás, sporadicsmiles disse:

 

Even if the ME could produce football identical to real life we would still moan about it, I am sure. 

I don't think it ever will be like real life, RL football can be boring sometimes, and I also don't think the average FM player will have the patience to learn all the things that a system have to do , but honestly nowadays ME is very disappointing for a football simulator, simple modern concepts are not implemented in the game, and if they are, they demand so many micro manage to be half achievable that most of the player base will never achieve such patterns.

In my opinion, SI need to focus not only in making the ME more robust, but also in creating more instructions that helps the average player to achieve a more realistic gameplay. Nowadays what we see almost every time in this forum are people struggling to put together simple concepts, or not being able to organize a simple tactic with good roles because there are so many of them. This game right now is needing a bit of simplification, or better explanations on its systems. 

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Em 21/08/2020 em 15:21, _mxrky disse:

Good thread

My issue is: 

Defensive possession heavy sides don’t exist in real life (or at least not in the manner portrayed in this game). So people rightfully complain that the ai plays in such a manner

United's van gaal were exactly a defensive possession based-team.

Cheers,
Bitner 

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5 hours ago, sporadicsmiles said:

Agreed. I would love to hear what other people have tried. I especially would not mind hearing about what people have tried that did not work so well too. Negative results are as important as positive ones.

Tactical moves that have worked well for me:

  1. Using a front five (either 4 AM + 1 ST or 3 AM + 2 ST) to fill passing lines and press more comprehensively
  2. Dropping my defensive line and using a cover duty central defender to protect against long ball counters
  3. Playing for set pieces, forcing the play out wide, using good dribblers to draw fouls and win corners, then relying on an expert set piece taker to deliver threatening free kicks and corners

My team building is now based on this as well, with the following priorities:

  1. Get 1-2 great set piece takers
  2. Get 1-2 aerial beasts (even 35 year old Fellaini did the job for me)
  3. Get 1-2 dribbling beasts
  4. Fill out the rest of the team with players possessing high work rate, pace, and acceleration

Two tactical ideas that don't work well for me:

  1. Shooting a lot - When the opposing GK stops a few shots, his morale and disposition improve while my players get frustrated and anxious, leading to more misses
  2. Standing off opponents and encouraging them to move forward - They don't do it
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7 hours ago, goku4 said:

I am very much interested in your pressing setup. Like which d-line, LOE you play against these teams. Also whether tight marking or not or aggressive tackling or not. I kinda have the problem with pressing against these teams as they often tend to keep the ball in their own third... 

As I said in the opening post, I'm still just using all the principles laid out in those threads I mentioned.  Have a read through all the posts highlighted in blue in my tiki taka thread if nothing else.

In this particular system I use stay on feet to help my defenders time the tackle better, rather than go lunging in and running the risk of missing tackles or giving away free kicks.

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14 hours ago, Bitner said:

United's van gaal were exactly a defensive possession based-team.

Cheers,
Bitner 

Did they make 30% of their passes In their own defensive third?

Edited by Experienced Defender
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I'm still really struggling this - I've read through all guides on possession with intent and numerous threads on ways to stop teams from dominating possession to kill games (even once they've gone behind). But I just can't solve it - see the images below for the latest examples. I guess it's just the way it is and we all just need to get one with it.

Screenshot 2020-08-23 at 17.34.22.png

Screenshot 2020-08-23 at 17.34.48.png

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21 minutes ago, Haribo1681 said:

I'm still really struggling this - I've read through all guides on possession with intent and numerous threads on ways to stop teams from dominating possession to kill games (even once they've gone behind). But I just can't solve it - see the images below for the latest examples. I guess it's just the way it is and we all just need to get one with it.

Leaving to one side the opposition and their possession for a moment, looking purely at that one stats screen it seems that you are having issues keeping possession yourself.  You are never going to dominate possession if all you get is 345 passes.  The two stat screens I posted have 786 and 980 passes for my teams.

This tells me your team are still playing in a relatively direct fashion when in possession.  Your BPD is looking to play long passes, as is your DLP.  Your AP is trying to find through balls to play to a fairly static DLF.  Your Winger has an attack duty and wants to ping in crosses, as do your two wingbacks (especially the one with the attack duty).  None of this is particularly conducive to a possession system.

And then what about your pressing?  Unless you have some PIs allocated, you are relying on the Mentality's own pressing instruction and your player's aggression.

TL;DR - you are giving the ball away too easily and then (on the face of it) not pressing effectively enough.

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4 minutes ago, herne79 said:

Leaving to one side the opposition and their possession for a moment, looking purely at that one stats screen it seems that you are having issues keeping possession yourself.  You are never going to dominate possession if all you get is 345 passes.  The two stat screens I posted have 786 and 980 passes for my teams.

This tells me your team are still playing in a relatively direct fashion when in possession.  Your BPD is looking to play long passes, as is your DLP.  Your AP is trying to find through balls to play to a fairly static DLF.  Your Winger has an attack duty and wants to ping in crosses, as do your two wingbacks (especially the one with the attack duty).  None of this is particularly conducive to a possession system.

And then what about your pressing?  Unless you have some PIs allocated, you are relying on the Mentality's own pressing instruction and your player's aggression.

TL;DR - you are giving the ball away too easily and then (on the face of it) not pressing effectively enough.

Thanks - I've read through all the guides and threads on this and I typed out a long response as to why I don't really agree with the logic at play here, but don't want to turn this into a rant. Suffice to say, I think tactics are a bit like trying to crack a code and there's zero margin for error.

 

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17 minutes ago, Haribo1681 said:

I think tactics are a bit like trying to crack a code

That applies only to so-called plug'n'play (exploit) tactics. But there are also sensibly designed normal tactics that work nicely without cracking any codes ;)

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I had a save with Dresden where I thought I had the players to play this brand of football (Rashidi did a Gamechanger on it, it's on his channel), but I didn't have because I didn't understand back then what number should I aim in certain attributes, and I didn't understand that if I want to play like this I can't ignore some just because a player has shinny attributes elsewhere. And I need to address this a lot, because I see too many people signing a lot of "prodigies" and then complain like they have a world class team, and let's be honest, most of these players lack everything that would make them team players. I think we all know that classic quote from Cruyff about an XI full of individualities. 

So I did still manage to be 2nd with the same points of the winner, but I didn't play like I wanted and I signed with Inter where I saw what Herne is saying in the first post about having the players. And here is where I understood that a lot of players, not only young prospects, don't have what it takes to play on a Guardiola team. They don't have the acceptable work rate, or the team work, or the stamina, or the concentration, or whatever. But this team had, and I saw immeadiatly in the first couple of friendlies that I needed to change my approach and voilá. I won in the first season with a very hard working and team-first squad, and in the second season I did win 30 straight matches (without connecting with the season before) in the Serie A and the first time I lose, and only besides the Champions final to Liverpool, was in May. All season I had like 64% possession, I still struggle with some things but it's nowhere near what people complain here. Remember, players are the most important thing in football, they are players, player play, and they are the only ones that do that. 

In relation to this thread, I find this strategy of unloading (is this the word?) effective. I did read this in other forum like 7 years ago about going down on mentality, but I kind ignored because I already played in cautious in those FMs. Since 2017 I play mainly in positive and I had problems breaking these types of team, but then I found out this thread and Cleon around 2013/14 mentioned about reducing mentality (and other things) to take out aggressiveness so he could explore better spaces that he couldn't otherwise because he would be to aggressive in many ways. Sorry to Cleon if I'm misinterpreting his idea, I'm going to blame my english here. :D

 

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12 minutes ago, Experienced Defender said:

That applies only to so-called plug'n'play (exploit) tactics. But there are also sensibly designed normal tactics that work nicely without cracking any codes ;)

I don't use plug'n'play tactics and I only try to make my tactics through sensible design, choices that feel logical to me and overall normal, but it still feels like trying to crack a code by making non-intuitive changes sometimes at random. So I respectfully disagree :-)

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19 minutes ago, Haribo1681 said:

I don't use plug'n'play tactics and I only try to make my tactics through sensible design

I did not say that you use PnP tactics. My remark referred to "code cracking", not your tactic. Btw, your tactic is definitely not plug'n'play and could be considerably improved with relatively few tweaks IMHO. 

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Just now, Experienced Defender said:

I did not say that you use PnP tactics. My remark referred to "code cracking", not your tactic. Btw, your tactic is definitely not plug'n'play and could be considerably improved with relatively few tweaks IMHO. 

I didn't say that you did, so apologies for any misunderstanding. I made a couple of changes to make the play less direct, reduce the number of playmakers and try to complete more passes. Fortunately my seemingly long-ball, counter-attacking approach got me out of jail again with four goals in the first twenty minutes.

Screenshot 2020-08-23 at 19.30.24.png

Screenshot 2020-08-23 at 19.29.51.png

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I've been having issues with those types of sides as well, and tried something recently that seems to work. 

I had been playing a split block (front 4 in a 4-2-3-1) and using "Prevent Short GK distribution" with a standard LOE and defensive line. I took off all pressing instructions except Counter-Press, raised the defensive line to high, and added "Get Stuck In." Instead of chasing the opposing defenders like the usual headless chickens, my forwards will now wait for them to get forward, then engage and attempt to win the ball. In both matches I've played with those instructions, we had a goal scored from a tackle and subsequent counter-attack.

Not sure that this will work for everyone, as my team rates highly in Aggression, Bravery, and Strength, but thought I'd throw it out there as a suggestion. 

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12 hours ago, RCCook said:

I've been having issues with those types of sides as well, and tried something recently that seems to work. 

I had been playing a split block (front 4 in a 4-2-3-1) and using "Prevent Short GK distribution" with a standard LOE and defensive line. I took off all pressing instructions except Counter-Press, raised the defensive line to high, and added "Get Stuck In." Instead of chasing the opposing defenders like the usual headless chickens, my forwards will now wait for them to get forward, then engage and attempt to win the ball. In both matches I've played with those instructions, we had a goal scored from a tackle and subsequent counter-attack.

Not sure that this will work for everyone, as my team rates highly in Aggression, Bravery, and Strength, but thought I'd throw it out there as a suggestion. 

Maybe something if youre leading. I can tell you from my norwich side that after a while, even manchester united is happy to not attack and just keep the ball in his own third playing at home... If the AI does not attack, you can wait the whole 90 minutes :)

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16 hours ago, RCCook said:

I had been playing a split block (front 4 in a 4-2-3-1) and using "Prevent Short GK distribution"

If you use a split block, you don't need prevent GKD. Both at once usually lead to overkill. 

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Just thought I'd leave these here to see if anyone can spot any obvious flaws in my tactics that either allow the AI to rack up 700+ passes (mainly in their own half) or make my own team incapable of keeping the ball.

PIs: -

  • front three close down more
  • both full backs take fewer risks and cross less

I'm fully expecting to be told that it's all down to my tactics, but I'm not sure a team that's ranked 14/18 for possession should really be top of the league by 8 points at halfway - something there isn't right.

Screenshot 2020-08-27 at 17.51.58.png

Screenshot 2020-08-27 at 17.55.47.png

Screenshot 2020-08-27 at 17.52.22.png

Screenshot 2020-08-27 at 17.52.12.png

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14 minutes ago, Haribo1681 said:

I'm not sure a team that's ranked 14/18 for possession should really be top of the league by 8 points at halfway

Why not? Possession for the sake of possession means nothing. What really matters is how you use possession when you have it, not how much statistically you keep the ball.

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TBF that is against the league leaders in possession, so their 5% bump vs avg led to your's dropping, but you got lots of shots, to their very few, and bar the scoreline it looked like a comfortable win.

Doing something basic like man marking a CB or both or looking to force them into a specific way out of the back would have reduced their ping-ping passing numbers.

And are you 'not keeping the ball' or simply making good progress with your excellent attacking players, having a shot, and then they pick up possession on the rebound/GK and start the ping-ponging? Maybe work ball into box would have your guys keep it a bit longer? Does analysis show long shots or any trends in where you give up possession?

Edited by CaptCanuck
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I have seen these statements before that it's supposed to help against defensive sides to take the foot of the paddle which makes sense, because if you push them too deep into their own half they won't ever move out and thus once you win the ball there will be no space for you to use and the higher possession will help you prevent silly mistakes and run into counter attacks. In theory and in my head it all makes sense but for some reason those games where I think it would make sense to adopt a balanced or cautious mentality it doesn't really seem to do anything for my team. I still only manage a narrow win with way more shots and chances and now also more possession. For some reason it feels that over the run of a season I will have way better results if I simply stick with attacking football as a big team.

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43 minutes ago, Flohrinho said:

For some reason it feels that over the run of a season I will have way better results if I simply stick with attacking football as a big team.

Switching to a "lower" mentality does not necessarily mean you stop playing attacking football ;).

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On 25/08/2020 at 15:33, Experienced Defender said:

If you use a split block, you don't need prevent GKD. Both at once usually lead to overkill. 

I was under the impression that - particularly from FM19 onwards - Prevent Short GK Distribution significantly altered the shape of your team from opposing goal kicks / goalkeeper free kicks, similar to how Play Out Of Defence alters your shape playing out from the same situations like so:

On 27/12/2018 at 16:49, zlatanera said:

 

  Hide contents

1769354356_build-up(ourgoalkick).thumb.png.b683b64c7ac9c9965151cc8a22f6bef3.png

 

Sorry I can't seem to remove the spoiler tag from the quote

So whilst I can intuit what you mean by overkill, surely for a possession-based side the use of pressing and PSGKD makes sense? Provided you have the aerial ability further back to win the ball once you've succeeded in forcing them long, that is.

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OK, last post for me here because I'm getting a bit tired of banging my head against this particularly brick wall.

I went back to basics and switched to the preset 'Control Possession' playing style. Tweaked it slightly with PIs for full-backs to cross less and for AM L/R to sit narrower. My scout report said that they would play a Gegenpressing style, so I switched off Play Out from the Back and GK distribute to CBs/FBs in the hope that this might bypass the press. I left the mentality on balanced to try and encourage them out, switched it briefly to cautious when they started their possession game to see if we could keep it better then tried moving it to positive for the last 30 mins before going attacking for the last 10 mins. Only 3 of our 20 shots were from outside the area, so I don't think we're conceding possession too easily - our passing stats are decent, if unspectacular.

With everything set like this, I'd expect to see my team have at least equal possession and probe for chances in their half - if anything, given the lack of attacking mentality/roles, we should be a bit toothless in attack and the challenge should be to work out how to break down a stubborn defence. Instead, we have three of their back four racking up over 95 passes despite being put under pressure high up the pitch. I'd also expect them to try and expose the weaknesses in my setup - such as the high line or the high press allowing passing options into midfield - which the user could then react to and seek solutions for, but every team that sets up to play cautiously has zero ambition to do this so games all follow this pattern.

There may be a number of different workarounds/hacks to avoid this, but it's clear that this kind of approach from the AI is overpowered, which massively reduces enjoyment, for me at least.

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48 minutes ago, Haribo1681 said:

There may be a number of different workarounds/hacks to avoid this, but it's clear that this kind of approach from the AI is overpowered, which massively reduces enjoyment, for me at least.

Totally agreed. It's gotten to the point where the outcome is not worth the effort. When you are micromanaging every match just to scrape through 1-0 or worse 0-0. As a dominant side. It's not worth it. I would wait for FM21 and hopefully it's not as frustrating. It's really a question of better balance.

Or just don't try to get possession. Just play attacking geggenpress football and win everything.

Edited by crusadertsar
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17 hours ago, herne79 said:

Switching to a "lower" mentality does not necessarily mean you stop playing attacking football ;).

Yeah like I said, I still generate a ton of chances, even on cautious and have nice possession but it simply doesn't improve results at all. Like usually if I play a very defensive bottom half team with my all out attacking approach I will have between 12-20 shots on goal and if it's one of these games I'll end up scoring about 2 at max. Now if I go balanced or cautious I'll end up with 10-15 shots on goal and score about 0-1 goals in these games. The only difference is that I usually end up with a bit more possession but it neither improves my conversion nor does it help me to win these games more comfortably. That's all I'm saying.

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1 hour ago, Haribo1681 said:

Only 3 of our 20 shots were from outside the area

Looking purely at that one match you posted above, imo your main issue was your lack of shots on target - just 5 out of 20.  If you are typically seeing such returns that's a big problem which needs addressing.

1 hour ago, Haribo1681 said:

Instead, we have three of their back four racking up over 95 passes despite being put under pressure high up the pitch.

If their defenders are doing that then I'm afraid they are not being put under effective pressure high up the pitch.  Watch the match back over, what are your players actually doing during these phases of play?  What's their positioning like?  Upload a pkm of the match if you like.

I also want to ask if you (or anyone) consistently has an issue with a particular formation, why stick religiously to that formation?  Would it be more effective if - on occasion - you pushed Havertz up to the AMC position with Camavinga moving up to the MC line to form a 4231 instead?  Or going 442, or anything else for that matter.  I wrote about player positioning in the opening post, so if the 4123DM isn't giving you the player positioning you want, why use it?  I'm not saying the 4123DM can't work (it can) but if you are struggling then change it.  My point is if something doesn't work, find creative ways to adapt.  That's not "micromanaging", that's efficient and effective use of the tools available to us - be creative and think outside the box :thup:.

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16 minutes ago, herne79 said:

Looking purely at that one match you posted above, imo your main issue was your lack of shots on target - just 5 out of 20.  If you are typically seeing such returns that's a big problem which needs addressing.

If their defenders are doing that then I'm afraid they are not being put under effective pressure high up the pitch.  Watch the match back over, what are your players actually doing during these phases of play?  What's their positioning like?  Upload a pkm of the match if you like.

I also want to ask if you (or anyone) consistently has an issue with a particular formation, why stick religiously to that formation?  Would it be more effective if - on occasion - you pushed Havertz up to the AMC position with Camavinga moving up to the MC line to form a 4231 instead?  Or going 442, or anything else for that matter.  I wrote about player positioning in the opening post, so if the 4123DM isn't giving you the player positioning you want, why use it?  I'm not saying the 4123DM can't work (it can) but if you are struggling then change it.  My point is if something doesn't work, find creative ways to adapt.  That's not "micromanaging", that's efficient and effective use of the tools available to us - be creative and think outside the box :thup:.

So you are saying if 4-1-2-3DM is not working in the game, then just avoid it? Shouldn't the game allow us to succeed with any formation provided we have a logical tactical setup and good suitable players for it? Especially a formation that's is as balanced for attack and defence as 4-1-2-3 or 4-3-3. You know there is a reason why it's so popular in modern football. 

Edited by crusadertsar
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2 minutes ago, crusadertsar said:

So you are saying if 4-1-2-3DM is not working in the game, then just avoid it? Shouldn't the game allow us to succeed with any formation provided we have good players for it? Especially a formation that's is as balanced for attack and defence as 4-1-2-3 or 4-3-3. You know there is a reason why it's so popular in modern football. 

No. I think @herne79 said that if the 4123 DM is not working for you, then use a different aproach.

Any tactic, and style of play, can work in FM, but of course you need the right players to deal with it. I'm sure, for example if you only have two strikers in your squad you're not gonna choose a tactic like 442. Or for example if you don't have wingers in your squad your not gonna choose a wing play style.

Many users insist in using a certain tactic, or style of play, but forget doing a basic analysis of the team they are managing: Do i have the players to play with this tactic and this style of play?

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