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Developing Football Manager's Best Tactic 2013

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This is part of a series of articles i have written relating to developing Football Manager 2013's Best tactic, since this post has been written there have been two more updates which you can find here, Football Managers Best Tactic Part Two and Football Managers Best Away Tactic.

The Ultimate Football Manager tactic is something that we have all longed for. In previous versions of Football Manager, tactics were a lot simpler and you could easily download a tactic for FM and go on and win everything. It worked as they were well developed and good tactics. However tactics in Football Manager have moved on, as they should and we have stopped seeing plug and play tactics and more intricate tactics have developed. This is how it should be, Tactics where never meant to be easy in Football Manager.


Personally it has taken me a while to get used to this year’s match engine. It is even harder when SI decide to update our game every week with a new patch, and I think we have all suffered from new patch form. This hasn’t deterred me and I said that I would master the match engine this year and I feel that I have. Each one of us needs to take time to understand, however you should not let it ruin your game.


So I came up with an idea to help all of you struggling with Football Manager. Why not develop the Ultimate Football Manager tactic? Why not test it with a club from each level of the game, do separate tests for set pieces, away games, home games, everything you can think of and put it into one. So in this series of articles I am going to try and develop the Ultimate Football Manager tactic that will work with every single team. I don’t know if this is even possible, however I will learn a lot about tactics along the way and hopefully I can develop the best tactic in FM for you all.


Before you start this tactical journey be sure to have the other pieces of the jigsaw to help your squad along like players playing in your tactic are at their fittest, you can do this by checking out various guides here at Football Manager Academy such as How to make the most of Match Preparation, How to Get the Best out of Players & How to rotate your Squad guides. There may be many more hints and tips at Football Manager Academy that can help you along the way.


So here the journey begins. For the first week of this series I am playing with two clubs, Carlisle United and Shamrock Rovers, two very different clubs, but two very different reasons behind them. Firstly Carlisle United will give me the chance to try it in England as a team who are expected to finish mid table. They will hopefully give me the chance to try it with a team progressing through different levels so I can see if works through multiple promotions. Shamrock Rovers will give me two distinct possibilities. It will give me the chance to try it in a division that I am really expected to win and that I should win fairly easy. They will also give me the chance to try it in Europe, in a situation that I supposedly have no chance of winning.


So what tactic am I starting with? Well I will show you.





Well as you can see, the formation is nothing spectacular; neither does it need to be. A lot of people feel the need to try something special, you don’t need to, keep it simple. So this is a system I have used with Leeds very well. Anyway the defence is obviously straight forward. We then have DM, who is set on defend with the instruction to be a deep lying playmaker; I do this no matter who I play there. It means he doesn’t get forward much but he still has a vital role in taking it from defence. I then have a box to box midfielder; I have one of these in all my teams, it means the strikers don’t get isolated and that your defence gets the help it needs. Then you can see I have two wingers, one who plays a lot closer to the strikers as an Inside Forward, and then one who develops his play from a lot deeper, he may eventually go to attacking as I think wingers work so well when coming from deep.


The tactic itself is built around me not wanting my team to give possession away easily, hence the slowish tempo. I play very wide and expressive; this should allow space for my two strikers, one to drop deep and one to play on the last man. I think the key here is that the two wide men will pull their two full backs wide to allowing your box to box midfielder a lot of space to play into the strikers to. Admittedly I like short passing as it allows you to control the game. I always set my tactics to control, I won’t ever change that before a game but I will during a game.


Then we move on to the ‘defensive instructions. Clearly I have gone with man marking, anyone who doesn’t is an idiot for me, I have never seen a good tactic have zonal marking. I decided not to go with pressing as I feel it leaves to many players out of position and gives them an easier job of breaking you down. However I have kept a fairly high line so far.
So far that is all the development I have done on the best tactic in FM, it is nowhere near ready, and from this I will do a home and away version with specifics for cup competitions to. However that comes with time. So what results have I had so far? Well I will show you.


The results so far.


So as you can see we have had a great run. It really has worked; the team have taken to it very well to. I think the key is that I haven’t tried to do anything to special. There are area’s I would like to work on and that is mainly keeping the ball more and making better use of our opportunities. But that might be more the players than the system. Each game I have not changed it for the opposition at that would defeat the purpose of this experiment.


Obviously to develop the Ultimate FM tactic it is going to take time. However if any of you want to help, feel free to click the link below, download it and tell me what you all think, and you will all be credit in making the best tactic Football Manager has ever seen!

Download Football Managers Best Tactic Update One

Download Football Managers Best Away Tactic
 
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Well it looks interesting even if I totally disagree with some of your points (mainly the zonal marking thing that I find more efficient than man marking, and the fact that tactics are not meant to be easy in FM - Hi tactical creator !- it was much harder to achieve what you wanted in previous editions. Now just read what the role is all about, and find a player that fits this role and you're done).

Anyway, I'll download your work, and analyse it as carefully as possible and I'll report back soon. I'll try it with a huge fat club so I can really have a huge player pool for the analysis

EDIT : and btw, some people around here have made some tremendous work, like TheBetterHalf for example with a lot of well thought process in his tactics
 
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"tactics were a lot simpler and you could easily download a tactic for FM and go on and win everything. It worked as they were well developed and good tactics."

"It is even harder when SI decide to update our game every week with a new patch"

How can you expect us to take you seriously when you spout out **** like this? Oh and I had a quick read of the match prep guide and it misses some of the most basic information about match prep.
 
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This is part of a series of articles I have written relating to developing Football Manager 2013's Best tactic, since this post has been written there have been two more updates which you can find here, Football Managers Best Tactic Part Two and Football Managers Best Away Tactic.

The Ultimate Football Manager tactic is something that we have all longed for. In previous versions of Football Manager, tactics were a lot simpler and you could easily download a tactic for FM and go on and win everything. It worked as they were well developed and good tactics. However tactics in Football Manager have moved on, as they should and we have stopped seeing plug and play tactics and more intricate tactics have developed. This is how it should be, Tactics where never meant to be easy in Football Manager.

The where not “good tactics”, but good tactic files that helped you beat the Match Engine, exploiting its flaws.




It is even harder when SI decide to update our game every week with a new patch, and I think we have all suffered from new patch form.
They have not done so. SI rushed one patch that made the game really poor but then they released a better one and then the flow of the game looked just like intended again. Naturally, it’s a work in progress and hopefully, the man marking and pressing system will be even better in FM14



We then have DM, who is set on defend with the instruction to be a deep lying playmaker; I do this no matter who I play there. It means he doesn’t get forward much but he still has a vital role in taking it from defense.
Do you find that using a player with poor stats in technique, creativity, decision and passing will still perform in the role of a playmaker using an expressive approach ?
For me, I can only see him struggling with these settings.


The tactic itself is built around me not wanting my team to give possession away easily, hence the slowish tempo. I play very wide and expressive; this should allow space for my two strikers, one to drop deep and one to play on the last man.

A DLF on attack does not mean he will drop deep. Instead, he will act more or less like a holding Advanced FC, but moving up field from a slightly, slightly deeper position
Do you mean that you are using a player that has the ppm “ likes to come deep to get the ball” in this position ?



Then we move on to the ‘defensive instructions. Clearly I have gone with man marking, anyone who doesn’t is an idiot for me, and I have never seen a good tactic have zonal marking.
I and most other people I know of mainly stick with zonal due to that the position of the defenders when using man marking is slightly flawed, an issue that SI themselves have acknowledged and have come forward with
 
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