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You don't have to be the best at everything, just very good on one thing - Faithful Fearless False 9

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Brief history for this (you can skip):
Ok, first of all i didn't expected this to work so well as it did, but i am glad it did. I am used to playing a very standard 4231, and that was the case on the save i first tried this. Pau FC started on frech second division but as soon as we got to top flight our attack wasn't nearly as effective as it used to be.

The reason this formation started is because i bought 2 new wingers to improve the team, but despite their good attributes they were TERRIBLE, and something needed to be done. When i am desperate on attack, i tend to use a 424, which bears results, but since the bigger problem was the wingers and my central offensive midfielder was great for the level we were playing (love you, Florent Mollet) i thought: why not keep him, and bring more strikers for him to deliver passes, instead of wasting the ball with those wingers?

And then, lightning striked. All my strikers weren't good, except for the main one, because i invested in other positions. But they started scoring an absurd amount of goals, and of all sorts: from crossings, long passes, through balls, short passes, everything. Since then, my Pau side was able to grind from candidate to relegation to Ligue 1 champions in three years, which is insane if you know how PSG is in the game and if you consider my way worse squad.

And now, for the tactic:
Based on central overload because i was tired of bad wingers. The false nines in this case emulate the presence of these wingers i got rid of, but the positioning with 3 strikers confuses the defense and they don't really know how to mark the boys. The false 9 function manages well the space game, they have very good awareness of when to support and when to become a real striker. But don't just put wingers in the false 9 slots if you want this tactic to reach it's peak.

Since this system is so powerful, you can choose which is your main source of assists. With good wing-backs and strikers with decent aerial game, far post crossing is a threat (a false nine against a full back in the air). The false nines can either use external or internal feet, but if you use external they gotta have good crossing (or keep low crosses selected). Internal, either crossing or passing is great, and they will also score a lot from through-balls (that's why you keep the underlaps). If the opposition sits very narrow, trust the false nines to stretch them open and make space for the attacking and central midfielders either take shots coming from behind or find short passes to the advanced forward.

The advanced forward is the one who benefits the most from this tactic. He has to do the bare minimum, just push the ball to the net since he will get so many chances. For the most time i had a guy that was only good on finishing and was tall (below mediocre for the league), and stacked 25 goals in one season. No secrets, just let an advanced forward does what he does best.

Defensvely, it doesn't diverges much from a basic 4231. I really like carrileros (thanks, Zealand) but didn't use mezzalas cause in my save i didn't get to put my hands on a good one, so tweak as much as you like according to what players you have, i kept it basic like this for consistency. Same thing goes for the lower line of four, just have in mind you will miss a lot of goal chances if your wing-backs (or full backs) are too defensive, but it can be more solid too.

One important thing is: opposition wing backs are the main threat to this system, since you don't have any midfielders on the sides. That is why the false nines mark individually these positions, not really to win the ball back but to prevent them getting easy passes to more dangerous players. It seems the tactic rely greatly on the false nines (and it does) but they don't have to be geniuses, just let the system work and they can bring terror to defenses. It also worked well with other roles (my recommendation would be complete forward and pressing forward, while the central one can be poacher or complete too), but i liked the most with false nines.

So, in resume this better works with:
False nines well rounded, if it isn't possible just focus on the goal scoring
Advanced forward focused on goal scoring and physical
Attacking midfielder focused on passing but it's good to be a good finisher
Central Midfielder and Carrilero haven't anything special, just two consistent guys to keep the ball or win it back when lost.
Central backs also don't do anything special, use the role they are most confortable with.
Wing backs focused on passing and defensive attributes, but if they have good crossing is great. If you play a more direct style their long passes and crosses net a lot of assists.
Goalkeeper i really prefer to have one i can trust to make a lot of saves, but i am not relying only on him, if you like a goalkeeper that do other stuff it's cool too.

If you have underdog teams, you will make the most out of your strikers. If you have subtop team, the xG will go through the roof without conceding many. I have been using basically only this tactic since the 24/25 season on this save, basically 12 seasons of great success.

The tactic looks something like this:

The instructions of players will look something like this:

These are the main ones i would say.

Some results, but mind that with all the time i invested in this save my team is now really talented:


Example of a recent result against PSG:

The final months of the season i first won the UCL:

I hope you enjoy it! Feel free to ask anything and suggest tweaks and changes!
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