Striking from the Shadows: Shadow Striker FM19 Guide

Last year I started to cover the more exotic player roles that have been added to Football Manager series over the years. Some of the roles I highlighted, like Raumdeuter, Regista and Trequartista, have been the staples of the game for years. While Pressing Forward and Wide Targetman have only been added in the recent entries. In that respect the Shadow Striker role is not new. It was one of the original roles from 2013 when Football Manager did its biggest tactical revamp by getting rid of the old slider system and introducing the ubiquitous player roles and duties. So while it is a role that has been around for a while, I think it deserves to be celebrated for its shear usefulness. Unlike some of the other exotic roles, a Shadow Striker can be utilized in any tactical system and competition level in FM19. So what makes it such a universal attacking role?

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Sarriball at Juventus | The First Season

The Maurizio Sarri experiment at Chelsea did not last long, and now he has returned to the Serie A to have another crack at the Scudetto, but this time with Juventus.

If you’ve watched Sarri over the last few years, you know exactly what style of play he is going to bring. His 4-3-3 will be out in full force, and there is the potential for real magic at the Allianz Stadium next season.​

TURIN, ITALY – SEPTEMBER 20 (Photo by Daniele Badolato – Juventus FC/Juventus FC via Getty Images)
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Wide players in FM19: How to harness them in your ball-hogging side

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Like watching your wingers bomb up and down the touchline, getting crosses in? Or your full-back beguiling the entire opposition, manoeuvring his way into the box unmarked? Well stop reading right here.

We’re looking for passing and moving, people. No player can move without passing first.

That’s how I developed this spectacular tactical system.

WBA tacticDid you think any of that was true? It couldn’t have been further. Continue reading

FM19 Guide: How to defend with a high line

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It looks like you’ve got enough men back. The next thing you know, someone ends up ghosting behind your flabbergasted defence. Your first instinct is to blame your players, but the game’s animation often makes players look slower, or less alert, than they actually are.

Your next instinct might be to change your centre-backs; either in personnel or roles.

Nothing wrong with this at all. That said, without suitable protection, isolated centre-backs in a high line will always end up focusing primarily on the space behind them. To stop your enemies playing any football, the centre-backs must focus on keeping their positions! Continue reading

FM19 | Sacchi’s 4-4-2 | União | Part 4

This is my fourth season in charge at União da Madeira, taking them from Portuguese Third Tier up to the Primeira Liga in my first two seasons. After a respectable lower mid-table finish last season, I was looking to make improvements and finish in the top half this time around. If you haven’t already, you can read previous editions by following the links below.

This time around I decided to switch up my tactics. Taking inspiration from Thomas Paine’s excellent piece on Arrigo Sacchi’s Milan side, I decided to take a punt on a fluid 4-4-2. Seeing how well he had done with a less fancied side over in Italy, I attempted to replicate his success over in Portugal. I was not disappointed.

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Tactic Creation Guide: Part 3 – Offensive Trio – Press Forward!

I planned this as a three part series. I intend to go step-by-step through the process of creating a 3-5-2 tactic, from examining the formation’s strengths in the context of its three units: defensive, transition and offensive to showing you what kind of players you need. The first part dealt with the 3 Men Defence Unit. The 2nd focused on the Transition Unit of midfielders and wingbacks. This third and final part will examine the Offensive Trio and how their roles and instructions contribute to the success of the tactic as a whole. Finally I will analyze how the three units fit together to make up the strengths and weaknesses of the 3-5-2 system. So thank you for following so far. Read on!

Step 1: Defensive Unit

Step 2: Transition Unit – Wingbacks and Midfield

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Inverted Wing-Backs in FM19: How to Utilise Your Silent Assassins.

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Inverted wing-backs: what’s the point?

Inverted wing-backs are often just seen as full-backs standing in central midfield. An excuse to pass sideways. An excuse to bring natural full-backs out of position. An excuse to play 20,000 bleeding passes for the sake of it!

However, believe it or not, using inverted wing-backs correctly can give your side an unrivalled attacking threat. If you’re still with me, I’ll try to explain how! Continue reading

La Grande INTER: Bringing Catenaccio to 2019

A Tactical Replication for Modern Football

Why does it seem like the Catenaccio preset in Football Manager 2019 doesn’t work? Or at least, certainly not work for a long term system. Well, it’s because the system itself no longer works in the modern football game. I’ve heard chatter that Sports Interactive didn’t replicate the system instructions the “right way” but I think they did… and that’s why it doesn’t work.

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Dynamo Project Tactic Creation – Step 2: Transition Unit

I planned this article as a three part series. In this extensive guide I intend to go step-by-step through the process of creating my 3-5-2 tactic, from examining the formations strengths in the context of the primary three units: defensive, transition and offensive to showing you what kind of players you would need for this tactic. The first part dealt with the 3 Men Defensive Unit. This following one will be looking at the Transition Unit of the two midfielders and two wingbacks, and how their roles fit in my tactical system. So read on!

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