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Let There Be Light

fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
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Let There Be Light - Counter Attacking Excellence by Fuelledbypassion
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Reality hurts...

I have been playing the Football Manager series since the dark ages, from the days of the simplistic yet
addictive Championship Manager 4, to the perpetual heights of the franchise today. The straightforward
concept of buying the league has long gone, as many of the big hitters have found in football recently,
and in persuit of the ultimate virtual experience, Sport Interactive have created a real monster of a
game.

But with this added realism comes the harsh reality that many are failing to comprehend - the game has
become much harder.

I've never considered myself the next Herrera or Guardiola, indeed, I'd never have the tactical know-how to
reinvent the game that I love so much. But I've always got by. This year though, I've struggled to adapt
to the new game and match engine. Repeatedly screaming at a dot on my screen, 'close him...square it...shoot!',
have irked me in the past but we've always won through my frustrations. Yet only now can I ashamedly admit
to dipping a toe in the icy pool of tactic downloading, if only to spare my blushes.

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A Philosophical Change...

FM 2013 is a game that will really test your patience. I've always been an advocate of attacking football,
breathtaking interplay and midfield domination. I overload the midfield, control the tempo and patiently
probe for an opening, and I've always favoured the poacher, the attacking playmaker and the midfield
anchorman. But this game has changed my philosophy - it's now just as pleasing to scrape a 1-0 win with a
set piece goal, as hitting the bottom team for six in the previous game. Your decisions are heralded and
vilified, just as in real life, which makes it all the more rewarding when you win.

So I've had a change of heart. Defensive solidity is more important than ever before. I can't just attempt
to outscore other teams - I don't have a forward line of Van Persie, Rooney and Hernandez playing as
Sanremese or Stalybridge Celtic. So I have had to change my philosophy.

Fluid > Balanced
Contol > Counter

I've also changed formation slightly, reducing the number of specialised roles in my midfield, but still
allowing fluid interplay and the tidy, short passing that I love to watch most. The midfield engine is now
a flat three, with simplified, more balanced roles to improve the defensive part of the tactic. With my
most attacking midfielder only venturing forward when we have the ball, plus a defensive minded playmaker
and a disciplined defensive player alongside, the tactic is more solid and built to retain possession.

Anchorman (Defend) > Central Midfielder (Defend)
Box to Box (Support) > Central Midfielder (Attack)
Advanced Playmaker (Attack) > Deep Lying Playmaker (Defend)

Now that I have restricted my midfield somewhat and pushed back my defence, I needed a striking option that
will help to link up play, as well as pushing the opposition in the opposite direction. My fluid front three
would have to be sacrificed for a more versatile and, ultimately, defensive trio. They will remain my
biggest attacking threat, mainly supported by a central midfielder, a wingback and a fullback.

Winger (Attack) > Inside Forward (Attack)
Poacher (Attack) > Complete Forward (Support)
Inside Forward (Attack) > Inside Forward (Support)

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Team Instructions...

The tactical concept itself, is very simple: Defend and attack in numbers, as one. It's a versatile set up
that allows us to sit deep and spring quickly against the stronger teams, but also dominate possession and
score beautiful team goals against the weak. Concentration on set pieces is a useful approach, allowing us
to sit back and soak up pressure but remain a genuine attacking threat.

View attachment 308998

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The Inspiration...

Sweeper 'Keeper (Support) - 'The Lev Yashin'

Will sweep up any through balls that aren't intercepted, and initiate attacks with quick distribution to
full backs or direct, long balls to the attacking trio. Key attributes are Decisions, Positioning and
Reflexes.

Left Central Defender (Cover) - 'The Franco Baresi'


Covers his defensive partner and sits deeper than the defensive line, able to intercept attacks and pick up
midfield runners. Needs to be composed on the ball. Key attributes are Anticipation, Concentration and
Positioning.

Right Central Defender (Stopper) - 'The Jose Santamaria'

Closes down opposing strikers, dominant in the air and a defensive rock. Also a real goal threat from set
pieces. Key attributes are Heading, Marking and Strength.

Left Full Back (Support) - 'The Paolo Maldini'

Although primarily a defensive player, he must also be competent in possession with the stamina to support
attacks. He is an important link player. Key attributes include Tackling, Positioning and Stamina.

Right Wing Back (Attack) - 'The Cafu'

This player is very important in attack, often overlapping the Inside Forward and creating many goals for
the team. He keeps width and is always a passing option. Key attributes are Crossing, Dribbling and
Work Rate.

Central Midfielder (Defend) - 'The Jean Tigana'

The most defensive of the three, this central midfielder acts as a screen in front of the back four and
plays a simple passing game. Along with the Deep Lying Playmaker, he sits back and controls the tempo,
while also encouraged to pick a forward pass when available. Key attributes include Tackling, Positioning
and Teamwork.

Deep Lying Playmaker (Defend)
- 'The Josep Guardiola'

The heartbeat of the team, focused on controlling the game and dictating play. With extra defensive
responsibilities, he will rarely venture forward and provides support for the back line. Key attributes
are Passing, Composure and Positioning.

Central Midfielder (Attack) - 'The Frank Lampard'

Breaks forward at every opportunity and is a goal threat both inside and outside the box. Moves into
channels and is generally given the license to roam around. Key attributes are Decisions, Off The Ball and
Teamwork.

Left Inside Forward (Support) - 'The Luis Figo'

Supports the attack, coming off the flank to play in attacking players or take on defenders and go for
goal. Key attributes include Passing, Off The Ball and Acceleration.

Right Inside Forward (Attack) - 'The George Best'

Attacks from the flank, leaving space for an overlapping wing back, or dribbling wide and crossing into
the box. Scorer of great individual goals. Key attributes include Dribbling, Crossing and Acceleration.

Complete Forward (Support) - 'The Johan Cruyff'

Plays like an attacking, Deep Lying Forward, linking play and driving forward from deep. He is the focus
point of a fluid attacking trio, with a supporting midfielder as an extra passing option occasionally
driving ahead of him. Also drifts to the flanks, looking for and creating space. Key attributes are
Off The Ball, Teamwork and Anticipation.

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A Tactical Masterclass...

I developed the tactic with Borussia Dortmund, and had phenominal success testing with Italian mediocracy
in Parma.

Borussia Dortmund - League Champions, an incredible 23 clean sheets in 34 league games,

View attachment 309009View attachment 309010
View attachment 309006View attachment 309007View attachment 309004View attachment 309005

Parma - top at the halfway stage having signed Yussuf & Zuniga on loan

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Ukraine - some decent performances against big teams and a good World Cup campaign

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View attachment 310833View attachment 310834View attachment 310831View attachment 310832
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Key Players...

In my experience, the Deep Lying Playmaker is a vital position as your primary conductor of the game. It's
always important to have a solid spine, but a flambuoyant front three can carry a weaker team. Strong and
powerful centre backs are a massive bonus.

Borussia Dortmund

View attachment 309013View attachment 309016View attachment 309014View attachment 309015

Parma


View attachment 309017View attachment 309018View attachment 309019View attachment 309020

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From The Dugout...

Touchline shouts play a major part in this year's Football Manager, with tactical versatility a must in the
game. I like to counter and opposition threats/weaknesses during the contest, often altering my instructions
around the formations I face.

When playing a narrow diamond > Exploit the Flanks, Run With Ball, Play Wider
When playing a two man midfield > Exploit the Middle, Play Through Defence, Play Narrower
When holding a lead against strong opponents > Drop Deeper, Play Narrower, Clear To Flanks
When leading against weaker opponents > Retain Possession, Pass To Feet, Take A Breather
When chasing a game > Push Higher Up, Hit Early Crosses, Look For The Overlap, Hassle Opponents

There's lots of good advice on touchline shouts, some of which can be found here

It's all about reacting quickly this year, and I've often found myself changing the team's focus to the
right flank or to utilise my right wing back as a target man. I would advise watching as much of the match
as you can, If you really want the full experience and the best chance of success.

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The Link...

Good luck guys, hope this has at least helped inspire a few of you to think more about your own tactics.
I would love anyone out there to give this a go, I'm sure that it can be successful with the right players

Now Play Nice :)


For an alternate version of the tactic, with a slight change of formation and player roles that have worked well for other teams, here is Veez' Let There Be Light Tweaked Version:

 
Last edited:

ajt09

Nice Guy Gramps
Oct 23, 2009
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Nice tatical advice.

Also relieved to see I'm not the only one that shouts intructions at moving pixels-which I've been doing the past 3-4 hours an right now against Spurs lol. Doesn't bear well for my Everton helpt thread :S

Doesn't get any better may give this a shot
 

fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
3,437
0
0
35
Nice tatical advice.

Also relieved to see I'm not the only one that shouts intructions at moving pixels-which I've been doing the past 3-4 hours an right now against Spurs lol. Doesn't bear well for my Everton helpt thread :S

Doesn't get any better may give this a shot
Yeah I've found myself screaming at the screen more than ever this year, but it usually means it's my fault!

Does get really frustrating though, when a player plays a blind pass or the 'keeper misses a simple catch. Match engine has improved dramatically now
 

ajt09

Nice Guy Gramps
Oct 23, 2009
15,215
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0
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Yeah I've found myself screaming at the screen more than ever this year, but it usually means it's my fault!

Does get really frustrating though, when a player plays a blind pass or the 'keeper misses a simple catch. Match engine has improved dramatically now
Yeah same here lol. Though I still find myself blaming a bunch of pixels-then feel guilty lol. Right about the ME too. Was playing poorly against Arsenal in carling cup, shouted instructions went 1-0 up, then it was 1-1. Few tweaks and shouts-Gueye gets the winning goal 90+ . I went mental pmsl
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
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awesome OP mate! i just love it when tacticians manage to get me excited about trying a tactic by simply reading the OP. and great results to go with it. will try this with my recently promoted wolves aquad and post some results and feedback later :)

thanks mate!
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,547
136
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quick question... do you ever change the team mentality? for example when chasing a result --» attacking
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,547
136
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When chasing a game > Push Higher Up, Hit Early Crosses, Look For The Overlap, Hassle Opponents


cant use hit early crosses and look for overlap at same time, which one is more appropriate?
 

fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
3,437
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0
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When chasing a game > Push Higher Up, Hit Early Crosses, Look For The Overlap, Hassle Opponents


cant use hit early crosses and look for overlap at same time, which one is more appropriate?
Yeah I use whichever is most appropriate at the time. If playing against a wide midfielder who isn't tracking back, I use the overlap, whereas against hard working opposition I'm more inclined to hit early crosses. It depends on the situation
 

fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
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veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
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hi mate! ukraine looks good :) im gonna finish my friendlies in a few minutes and i'll post some screenies just before i start the season. im loving the flow of the tactic so far. and it really fitted my players very well, only had to sign a couple more players, which was perfect coz i had a very low budget.

since you use shuts depending on opponent formation (which is awesome by the way) i always use an "opponent formation" window, and its great to see how the opponent will change formation due to the shouts we are using. if they start wih a 2 man midfield and you explit the middle, when you go 1 or 2 up they will put an extra man in midfield, then we focus down the wing, or posession, depending on the team or situation. simply fantastic. obviously ive only played friendlies, and the true tests will come later, but im very confident, considering how its played so far.

one question, do you use any specific training? and do you ever change mentality or only shouts?


EDIT: sorry... and do you use opposition instructions?
 
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fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
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hi mate! ukraine looks good :) im gonna finish my friendlies in a few minutes and i'll post some screenies just before i start the season. im loving the flow of the tactic so far. and it really fitted my players very well, only had to sign a couple more players, which was perfect coz i had a very low budget.

since you use shuts depending on opponent formation (which is awesome by the way) i always use an "opponent formation" window, and its great to see how the opponent will change formation due to the shouts we are using. if they start wih a 2 man midfield and you explit the middle, when you go 1 or 2 up they will put an extra man in midfield, then we focus down the wing, or posession, depending on the team or situation. simply fantastic. obviously ive only played friendlies, and the true tests will come later, but im very confident, considering how its played so far.

one question, do you use any specific training? and do you ever change mentality or only shouts?
I don't ever change mentality but it's something you could try. Regarding training, I usually keep it on tactics only and team cohesion, set to high intensity, until they become more fluid with the tactic. I have used Defensive Positioning (as Dortmund), but with Parma I let the assistant control it and he often used Attacking Set Pieces to good effect. It really depends on the strength of your team.
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,547
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I don't ever change mentality but it's something you could try. Regarding training, I usually keep it on tactics only and team cohesion, set to high intensity, until they become more fluid with the tactic. I have used Defensive Positioning (as Dortmund), but with Parma I let the assistant control it and he often used Attacking Set Pieces to good effect. It really depends on the strength of your team.

thanks mate!

here are some screenies of my friendlies and my squad:

View attachment 309529View attachment 309530View attachment 309537View attachment 309531View attachment 309532View attachment 309533View attachment 309534View attachment 309535View attachment 309536
 

fuelledbypassion

Complete Legend
Dec 11, 2009
3,437
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Looking good against some weaker teams. Hopefully you'll do okay against the tougher ones. Who has been scoring most of your goals so far, has it been the inside forwards? I've found the goals are well spread throughout the team. Try using opposition instructions to nullify key players too - it worked well against Jovetic, Vucinic & Lewandowski for me
 

LukeGame

Member
Aug 12, 2009
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How would my united team be set out with this tactic? Only signings I have made are Wellington Nem, Bale, Fellaini and Adryan.
Who would play what positon and is there any players you can suggest that would improve this tactic and my squad?
I enjoyed reading this thread and look forward to trying this tactic out so any help would be great:)
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,547
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You're in your second season, you say you have a small budget, yet you have all those players? How?
small budget second season

first season i had a good budget and sold all of my squad

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check out the sort of clauses i use, then see expenditure on transfers for last year (30M) and compare it to the "total" spent shown in the transfer history screen (225M), you can do the same for this year too. you'll see that i spent more or less what i obtained from sales in both years. the excess are clauses. obviously i will jhave to sell soe players before they reach their clauses or win a few titles and rake in some cash, otherwise i might send wolves into bankrupcy.
 

veez

Member
Jul 20, 2009
2,547
136
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36
Looking good against some weaker teams. Hopefully you'll do okay against the tougher ones. Who has been scoring most of your goals so far, has it been the inside forwards? I've found the goals are well spread throughout the team. Try using opposition instructions to nullify key players too - it worked well against Jovetic, Vucinic & Lewandowski for me
my strikers score loads of hat tricks and the inside forwards have a dab too. gonna starts season now, will post screenies after a few games
 
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