05 April 2011

Football Manager 2011 My Best tactics:4-5-1

         Helloooo guys.  Today I want to share a tactic that has followed me around on Football Manager. We all try many different formations and tactics in the hope of finding the FM 2011 best tactic. Well my 4-5-1 has proven effective in last few games. I do hope so it works for you guys. Its very simple and should suit a variety of different players in different positions.

For more tactic,click HERE

I send my players out in a very simple 4-5-1 formation. Using my wingers as more attacking players rather than wide midfielders offers great support for the lone striker. Plus this helps get more bodies forward on the counter. I tend to keep a flat three in central midfield rather than pulling one into defensive midfield or attacking midfield. I find this helps my FM 2011 tactic flow better, my side can also dominate the centre more like this.

Lets start with the team instructions. I always use the ‘balanced’ philosophy while managing a Premier League side. My strategy tends to change slightly depending on the opponents and whether we are home or away. A ‘standard’ starting strategy is applied if I think we can win the game. However, I use a ‘counter’ strategy if there are any doubts. I like to see my players make an effort and pressure the ball, so setting the closing down to ’press opponents’ is very important. I find zonal marking a disaster, therefore only ever use ‘man marking’. Playing more ‘direct’ is also quite important, however this may depend on your team selection. I would suggest considering if your side are more like Arsenal (if so play short) or like Stoke (in which you need to be more direct.) Basically if they can pass the ball around well you may need to change this. A lot of Premier League pitches are huge and therefore benefit a more direct passing game to get in behind the defence. The defensive line, width and tempo below are my default settings. I only change these if coming up against a fast side or if my assistant recommends something the contrary.


This part is probably the most flexible section of my FM 2011 best tactics guide. It really is down to trial and error, however I will share with you what has worked best for me so far. Both the right and left defender should be set to ‘full back’. I find having one as ‘automatic’ or ‘defend’ and the other as ‘support’ provides a good mixture and doesn’t leave the defence too short staffed when going forward. The most important roles are in central midfield, two players should be set to a role of ‘central midfield’. The third midfielder can be the same or set a role of ‘advanced playmaker’. However I would recommend setting three different duties to this central midfield trio. One should have a duty of ‘defend’, a more versatile player should be set to ‘support’, while your most attacking player should have a duty of ‘attack’. With these duties your central midfielders should blend quite well and everything that needs doing in the centre is covered. I always set one winger a role of ‘winger’ and the other a role as ‘inside forward’. This way the lone striker gets more support. While we’re on the lone striker I only ever use two roles, these are ‘target man’ or ‘poacher’. The reason being because other roles don’t get the most out of my strikers in this formation. Obviously you should only set the role accoring to your players strengths.

Now it’s time to talk about a Football Manager feature that is usually ignored by many managers, but that can turn a draw into a win or even a loss into a win! I’m talking about the Touchline Instructions in Football Manager: what is their effect on the play and when should you use them?

Before proceeding, have in mind that most of the instructions you select from the game menu will not have any effect on the players that have individual instructions set (they will not override your instructions!) so for those players you might have to change the instructions individually. Now let’s see the Touchline Instructions guide below!

Retain Possession
Instructs your players to try and keep hold of the ball (instead of trying long passes). This means a slower tempo and shorter passing set.
When to use: When you are leading and want to keep the scoreboard unchanged or when your long passes simply don’t seem to connect.
Get Ball Forward
Instructs your players to look to get the ball forward. This is the opposite of “retain possession”, increasing the tempo and pass length
When to use: Useful if you play on a long pitch, if you want to get back in the game with a quick goal.
Pass Into Space
Instructs your players to look to try more through balls
When to use: Useful if you play on a long pitch, if you want to get back in the game with a quick goal.
Pass Into Feet
Instructs your players to pass directly to a player (less through balls)
When to use: When you want to keep possession, if your team is slower than the opposition. Also increases pass percentage and reduced interception rates for the opposition!
Pump Ball Into Box
Instructs your players to launch high, long-range passes into the opposition’s penalty area.
When to use: I must admit that I rarely use this instruction which apparently is best for grabbing that late goal – but unless you have good passers and tall forwards with good jumping, I guess it’s kind of useless…
Clear Ball To Flanks
Instructs your players to look to make their clearances into wider areas to be picked up by attacking players.
When to use: When you want to focus passing on the wings and try some counter attacks. Also useful if the opposition is playing mainly through the middle.
Shoot On Sight
Instructs your players to shoot when the opportunity arises instead of waiting for a more clear-cut opening (increases long shots)
When to use: When you really need a goal and you simply can’t get good close shots.
Work Ball Into Box
Instructs your players to work hard for their opening, remaining patient and not forcing the issue (decreases long shots)
When to use: When your players are shooting mainly from long range and you don’t have any clear cut chances. Be careful, though, that this is not really useful against a team that’s defending will all players.
Exploit The Flanks
Instructs your players to look to take full advantage of wing play, perhaps due to an opposition weakness.
Similar to Clear Ball to Flanks, this is a more offensive instruction.
Exploit The Middle
Instructs your players to look to take full advantage of playing through the middle, perhaps due to an opposition weakness.
More offensive, focus passing through the middle.
Look For Overlap
Instructs your players to hold onto the ball and look for an overlapping player in support, most likely a marauding full-back.
When to use: If you have good fullbacks and especially when the opposition has no wingers, for extra support and scoring chances given by the fullbacks going forward.
Take A Breather
Instructs your players to keep hold of the ball but simply take a moment to recover physically before attacking again (decreases tempo and forward runs)
When to use: There are two possible strategies for this really useful instruction: either when you’re having a solid lead and you want to keep your players as fit as possible; or when you plan to slow the game down a little, then increase the tempo drastically and hopefully catch the opposition unprepared.
Play Wider
Instructs your players to look to stretch the pitch and play wider (increases the width of the passes)
Play Narrower
Instructs your players to look to narrow the field and play in the middle of the pitch.
Push Higher Up
Instructs your players to play higher up the pitch, starting with the line the defense holds, which should be close to the halfway line if this option is chosen.
When to Use: ONLY against slow/poor strikers and you should also play offside, when you want to completely dominate the game.
Drop Deeper
Instructs your players to retreat into their own territory and defend it from there.
When to use: when the opposition is defending a lead or when the opposing strikers are faster than your defenders. Using offside with this instruction is not indicated.
Hassle Opponents
Instructs your players to give the opposition little time and space on the ball, attempting to force a mistake.
When to use: When you want to control the game and have more possesion
Get Stuck In
Instructs your players to be aggressive and strong in the tackle. This may increase the risk of fouls and disciplinary action.
When to use: When you need possession of the ball. This increases all tackling to hard, so not recommended for players with poor stats.
Stay On Feet
Instructs your players to stay on their feet when making tackles instead of going to ground.
When to use: When you want to keep your players clean (useful when the ref is very strict) or when playing against technical players who can avoid tackles.
Play Even Safer
If you wish to preserve a lead, selecting this option will instruct your players to play with safety foremost in their attentions.
When to use: When setting the team to contain a result and the opposition is all over you!
Take More Risks
If you are chasing a game, this option will instruct your players to take whatever risks necessary to get themselves back in it.
When to use: When you set to Overload strategy and you really need a goal.
As you can see, there are some vital Team Instructions in Football Manager for different situations and you should really try and take advantage of them to win everything!

Goodluck for those who play this game.


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