FM23: What Makes a Good Shadow Striker? 

In many ways, the modern game of football has become a complex game of deception and tactical feints. 

A shadow striker is an attacking player who occupies the central attacking midfielder’s position (AMC) in Football manager, but rather than primarily acting as the playmaker for the team, mainly focuses on scoring goals.

Out of possession, the Shadow Striker presses the opposition defenders in an effort to win the ball back as quickly as possible while limiting their ability to play off from the back.

When used properly, the Shadow Striker can easily become the main source of goals for your team while still racking up a respectable number of assists.

Dennis Bergkamp famously labelled himself as a shadow striker in his autobiography “Stillness and Speed: My Story”. Bergkamp was not the first or even the greatest shadow striker to grace the beautiful game. That title should probably go to the one and only, the late great, Pele.

Football Manager Description – Shadow Striker

According to the in-game description, “shadow striker operates as one of the team’s main goalscoring threats. Coupled with supporting forward, he aggressively pushes up into goalscoring positions as the ball moves into the final third.”

Recommended Attributes

The Shadow Striker role is a very demanding role both physically and in the technicals since he is expected to be one of the main goal threats, and also act as a playmaker while still also performing defensive activities.

The Shadow Striker should first have good finishing, off-the-ball movement, passing, vision and excellent work rate.

Recommended Attributes for a Shadow Striker

Player Preferred Moves

The Shadow Striker role comes with the following player instructions;

Player Instruction – Shadow Striker

The above Player instructions can be combined with the following Player Traits to make the shadow striker more effective in his role

  1. Likes to try to beat the offside trap

This trait will make the shadow striker more likely to make runs in behind the defence as they are put through on goal by his teammates. The likelihood that the runs made are successful will depend on his top speed, anticipation and off-the-ball movement. 

  1. Plays one-twos

Consistently playing one-twos with the striker ahead of him will make the shadow striker difficult to be picked up by the defenders while also progressing the ball towards the goal. For this to work effectively, the shadow striker should have good passing and off-the-ball movement.

  1. Tries killer balls often

As expected of any no.10, the role of creating chances is part and parcel of what they bring to the team and the shadow striker is no different, they will need to supplement the goal-scoring exploits, and the “tries killer balls often” trait will go a long way in ensuring this. Their passing, technique and vision will need to be at around 15 for this to work effectively if you are playing in one of the top five leagues.

Recommended Shadow Strikers

Name Age Position Current Club Nationality
Kevin De Bruyne 30 M (RLC), AM (C) Man City BEL
Bernardo Silva 27 M/AM (RC) Man City POR
Phil Foden 22 AM (RLC) Man City ENG
Dejan Kulusevski 22 M (R), AM (RC) Tottenham SWE
Pablo Sarabia 30 M (RL), AM (RLC) PSG ESP
Rodrigo De Paul 28 M (C), AM (RLC) Atlético ARG
Sergio Canales 31 M/AM (C) Betis ESP
Christopher Nkunku 24 M/AM (RLC) RB Leipzig FRA
Marek Hamšík 34 M/AM (C) Trabzonspor SVK
Erik Lamela 30 AM (RLC) Sevilla ARG
Roberto Soriano 31 M/AM (C) Bologna ITA
Giovani Lo Celso 26 DM, M (LC), AM (C) Villarreal ARG
Charles De Ketelaere 21 M/AM (C), ST (C) Milan BEL
Florian Wirtz 19 M/AM (C) Bayer Leverkusen GER
Emile Smith Rowe 21 AM (RLC) Arsenal ENG
Carlos Soler 25 WB (R), DM, M/AM (RC) PSG ESP
Otávio 27 M (RC), AM (RLC) FC Porto POR
Pedro Gonçalves 23 M (C), AM (RLC) Sporting CP POR
Rafinha 29 M/AM (RC) Al-Arabi BRA
Maximiliano Meza 30 M (C), AM (RC) Monterrey ARG
Dominik Szoboszlai 21 M/AM (LC) RB Leipzig HUN
Denis Suárez 28 M (C), AM (LC) Celta ESP
Bryan Gil 21 M (L), AM (LC) Tottenham ESP
Ryan Christie 27 M (C), AM (RLC) Bournemouth SCO
Manolo Gabbiadini 30 AM (RC), ST (C) Sampdoria ITA
Ricardo Horta 27 AM (RLC) Sp. Braga POR
Tjaronn Chery 34 M (R), AM (RC) Maccabi Haifa SUR
Takefusa Kubo 21 M (R), AM (C) Real Sociedad JPN
Yacine Brahimi 32 M (L), AM (RLC) Al-Gharafa ALG
Halil Dervişoğlu 22 AM (C), ST (C) Burnley TUR
Amine Harit 25 AM (LC) Marseille MAR
Nikola Vlašić 24 M (C), AM (RC) Torino CRO
Ayoze Pérez 28 AM (RC), ST (C) Leicester ESP
Cole Palmer 20 AM (RLC) Man City ENG
Gonçalo Guedes 25 M (RL), AM (RLC), ST (C) Wolves POR
Giovanni Reyna 19 M/AM (LC) Borussia Dortmund USA
Giorgian De Arrascaeta 28 M (L), AM (LC) FLA URU
Alireza Jahanbakhsh 28 M (RL), AM (RLC) Feyenoord IRN
Jacob Ramsey 21 M/AM (C) Aston Villa ENG
Philip Billing 26 DM, M/AM (C) Bournemouth DEN
Fábio Vieira 22 M (C), AM (RC) Arsenal POR
Manuel Lanzini 29 M/AM (C) West Ham ARG
Saïd Benrahma 26 AM (RLC) West Ham ALG
Alexey Miranchuk 26 M (R), AM (RC) Torino RUS
Ebere Eze 23 M (C), AM (LC) Crystal Palace ENG
David Brooks 24 M (R), AM (RC) Bournemouth WAL
Antonín Barák 27 M/AM (C) Fiorentina CZE
Hervin Ongenda 27 AM (C) Apol. Limassol FRA
Vincenzo Grifo 29 M (L), AM (LC) Freiburg ITA
Eduardo Vargas 32 AM (C), ST (C) ATM CHI
Martin Baturina 19 M/AM (C) Dinamo CRO
Juanpi 28 AM (RC) Caracas VEN
Gianluca Caprari 28 AM (LC), ST (C) Monza ITA
Nicolae Stanciu 29 AM (RC) WH Three Towns ROU
Faruku Miya 24 M (C), AM (RC) Rizespor UGA
Orkun Kökçü 21 M/AM (C) Feyenoord TUR
Lovro Majer 24 M/AM (C) Rennes CRO
Yacine Adli 21 M/AM (C) Milan FRA
Rochinha 27 AM (RLC) Sporting CP POR
Claudinho 25 M (C), AM (RLC) Zenit BRA
Enis Bardhi 26 M/AM (LC) Trabzonspor MKD
André Franco 24 M (C), AM (RLC) FC Porto POR
Magnus Wolff Eikrem 31 M/AM (C) Molde NOR
Ronaldo Deaconu 25 M/AM (C) Korona ROU
Carles Gil 29 AM (RLC) New England ESP
Anders Christiansen 32 M/AM (C) Malmö FF DEN
Ederson 22 M/AM (C) Atalanta BRA
Hayao Kawabe 26 M/AM (C) Grasshoppers JPN
Aleksandar Katai 31 AM (RLC) Crvena zvezda SRB
Tasos Bakasetas 28 AM (RC) Trabzonspor GRE
Dylan Flores 29 M/AM (C) Cartaginés CRC
Unai López 26 M/AM (C) Rayo Vallecano ESP
Jimmy Durmaz 33 M/AM (C)   SWE
João Pedro 20 AM (RLC), ST (C) Watford BRA
Óscar 23 M (C), AM (LC) Celta ESP
Guus Til 24 M/AM (C) PSV NED
Saman Ghoddos 28 AM (RLC) Brentford IRN

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Written by TheFMTeacher

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