Tag Archives: strikerless

Overtaking Happel – Creating new roles

rapid_2Second season done with Rapid and the first title in my ‘Overtaking Happel’ challenge is in the bag. At times the title looked unlikely, at others practically impossible but everything came together in the end and, aided by the required dose of good luck, we pipped Red Bull Salzburg at the post.

In keeping with the ‘theme’ of the Overtaking Happel posts, though, this won’t just be a diary of our results and the players that we signed. I’m trying to centre each article on a particular aspect of the game which has come to the fore during the season at hand. Hence why, during this article, I’ll try to cover what I have somewhat clumsily called “creating new roles”.

Essentially, what I’m trying to look at here are limited selections within the tactical interface that do not really cover what you require. How can you get around these limitations to produce the result on the pitch that you had in mind? Well all-too-often you just can’t as the interface is too restrictive but sometimes, just sometimes, you can come up with a working alternative. This season I’ve done just that and to great effect.

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Had to happen eventually I guess…

usld_2First of all, apologies for the incredibly tardy nature of this article. As any of you who follow me on Twitter will know, I haven’t exactly been enamoured with the game of late and I haven’t really had the motivation to write much about it – even though I am still, more or less, enjoying the network game with Petr.

Unfortunately, I haven’t had much enjoyment on the pitch as, for the first time in my long, long history of playing CM/FM, I have been relegated.

Relegated.

Into the league below the one we were in previously. It’s a confusing concept and I don’t like it.

So here’s how it happened and what we’re doing next.

Relegated.

Continue reading Had to happen eventually I guess…

FM14 Club and Country – Wunderteam reborn?

rapid_1Finally! The patch arrived and I have been able to play Football Manager 2014 for real! In fact, I was so excited about being able to play FM14 in anger that I’ve sped through the first season before I even had a change to set the scene.

Therefore, this post is going to have to cover a lot of ground – setting the scene in how the game has been set up, my general approach to the game and a look back at a successful first season.

As many of you will be aware, I have an FM-induced affiliation with both Rapid Wien and Austria – built up over years of playing them within the game and then graduating into watching the teams week-in-week-out. This year’s version returns to an edit that has proven to be the most interesting and long-lasting in the past – an Anschluss merger of the Austrian and German football systems.

However, as opposed to previous years, this version’s updates will place much more focus on the national team. Although I will update on the fortunes of Rapid, this will hopefully just provide a background of tactical experimentation and player development with fuller, more detailed analysis provided on the Austrian national team’s progress.

This will take the form of the odd piece on individual players whom I hope will develop into the national team and thorough reports on specific matches – why I used certain tactics, why I made certain in-match changes, etc.

Hopefully, that sounds like something of interest to you. If so, read on…

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Feralpi Salò – The End. Now what?

feralpi_homeFirst of all, I made a couple of new shirts for the team. Partly to commemorate our Champions League win, partly because I was bored of the old ones and partly just to muck around with the Smart Shirt Designer program. Anyway, I’m not such a big fan of the home shirt but the colours and design are kind of restrictive.

The away top, further in the post, is lovely though. Very happy with it.

They’ll be the last shirts which Feralpi wear with me in charge as I have reached the end of my time in Salò. 13 seasons, over 600 games, 2 promotions, 5 Scudetto titles, cups galore… it’s been fun.

However, it’s now got to the stage that the fun is diminishing. Domestically, we are just much, much better than everyone else. Against most teams I don’t even really bother trying any more and we’ll still run out winners by three or four goals. I’ve been playing a new tactic this season and I’ve no idea if it’s any good or if it’s just because we have far superior players.

So it’s time to move on. This, though, provides a brief history of the club – looking at some key moments or key seasons and the heroes of Salò.

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Feralpi Salò – European Champions!!

Trophy-Uefa-Champion-League

Champions of Europe.

Doesn’t that sound rather nice?

Champions.

Of Europe.

About bloody time some might say but no-0ne cares about the haters so instead I’ll just take delight in the fact that I have FINALLY secured football’s biggest trophy with our tiny side from the banks of Lake Garda.

With the decision made that I’m going to stay at Feralpi to secure what I hope will be an easy Club World Cup, I’ll give defending our Champions League title one shot and then move on to a new club… which may also entail a new save depending on what game I end up going with.

So this should be a relatively quick update with a little on the domestic competitions, some more focus on the Champions League glory and a little information on a couple of new tactics. But mostly it’ll be about being Champions. Of Europe. 🙂

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Analysing your tactic and spotting problems

tactics-board-501x334

Something which I often see asked around the FM sites and forums is how do people analyse their tactics? How do you spot the strengths and weaknesses of your own system? How to you see what is wrong and how do you fix it? What changes do you make during games and why?

It’s probably the most basic set of questions pertinent to the most fundamental area of the game and, understandably, I think that it’s something which many people struggle with.

I think that the reason it is so difficult for people to grasp is not only that it is a difficult skill; but that everyone has their own methods – none of which are right or wrong. Couple that with a perceived stigma that you might not “know what you’re talking about” and the massively arrogant and ignorant approach of many posters on FM or football websites, and you can understand why people have difficulty in identifying where they are going wrong.

This post, therefore, is going to try and put across a few of the methods that I use in trying to spot issues with my tactics. I’m not the best FM player in the world but I think I do pretty well so whilst I’m not suggesting that I have all the answers or that my way of doing things is “the best”, I hope that anyone who is struggling with their tactics in FM can take a little something from this post… and maybe the rest of you can just laugh at my efforts!!

So, as an example – here’s my effort at a strikerless libero tactic and a friendly against Anderlecht as the case study.

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Feralpi Salò – If at first you don’t succeed…

feralpi_home… try just one more time then give up. Well, at least that’s my plan.

I was tempted to call it a day at the end of this season but we got so close this year that one more effort is called for in our attempts to complete that final challenge – winning the Champions League.

It’s clear that we’re now the best team in Italy, comfortably so I would say but there is still a small group of European elite sides that are just that little bit better than us. It’s no longer the class above that it has been as evidenced by our fantastic performances in Europe this season but neither would I class Feralpi as equals to PSG, Real Madrid and Man City – the real powerhouses of Europe at the moment, although I’ve got a wary eye on Man Utd after appointing Montella and Bayern who are managed by my old protegé Christian Chivu.

So a fairly simple update this one – how we did, who was good, who wasn’t that good and a few transfers to make us better. And we’ll check in on the progress of young Eric Little – the development case study… he’s getting good.

Continue reading Feralpi Salò – If at first you don’t succeed…