Guides/Tips Tactics Guide For Newbies

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Tactics Guide For Newbies

FMM17 tactics guide for newbies with updated player role descriptions and primary/secondary attributes.

 

Your Formation:

Analyse your squad - It can sometimes be a little tricky to get the most out of your squad but the best way to go about it is to find a suitable formation for the players you're working with rather than forcing your players to play in a specific formation that you're comfortable with or that has worked for you in the past. That's risky if you don't know the squad well enough. What works for one team may not work for another, so before deciding upon a tactic you should look at how many players are capable of playing in each position. It's also important to bear in mind that we need not only a starting eleven but also a handful of good substitutes to provide necessary cover. Otherwise your tactic will soon fall apart when injuries, suspensions or loss of form occurs. If you have a squad for example with 4 players capable of playing up front as a striker then going with a formation with 3 strikers is very risky since it leaves you with insufficient substitutes. Squad depth is one of the most underestimated aspects in the game for newbie managers so make sure when analysing to look for your best squad and not just your best eleven.

Adding/Removing players - If you're working with a very large squad it's imminent that not everyone is good enough to stay on at the club. The age and ability of a player needs to be taken into consideration when judging whether players are or aren't up to the club's standards. Also, take a look at their attributes and see if they fit the roles they need to be covering on the pitch. If they aren't good enough then you should consider selling them but if they're still at a young age and have potential to grow then sending them out on loan is best for their development if these players aren't guaranteed playing time during the season. If you have a good transfer budget to buy reinforcements I suggest knowing your squad well and building a formation first before delving into the market to strengthen your team. You would be off to a bad start if you ended up buying players you don't really need. Only enter the market when you know what type of player you're going to need to strengthen a specific position in the team.

 

Your Tactics:

Balance is key - A too attacking team will concede a lot of goals while a team too defensive will be struggling to create opportunities, so it's absolutely crucial to get the balance right. Successful teams have the perfect mix of attack and defence as even a tiny shift in the balance on either end of the pitch may affect your players' performance and the entire outcome of the game as a result. The safest way to go about it when starting a tactic is to maintain a 5 attacking and 5 defending outfielders balance. The attacking players also includes players whose job it is to attack and defend, such as Box To Box Midfielders. When going forward their job will be to attack and you therefore can't rely on them to always be back in time to defend and vice versa. There must always be a mixture of 5 defensive players on the pitch as well. However, this doesn't mean 5 players in the back line but instead 5 players who are defensive-minded or are assigned defensive roles, such as Defensive Wingers. For balance you also need to consider the space between each player as massive gaps between attack and defence will undoubtedly lead to problems with getting the ball forward and create scoring opportunies for your forwards.

Width creates space - Like balance, too little width will lead to very little to no space for your players in the attack. Too much width leads to major gaps in the middle, which leaves the opponent with oceans of time and space to create goal-scoring opportunities. So it's equally important to bring the right dosis of width into your tactical setup, without giving away too much space to the opponent. It's therefore recommended to have no more than 2 players playing on either side of the pitch. Having players play wide, such as Wing Backs or Wingers, helps to spread the play and utilise the whole pitch. In the attack, this creates more space for the players playing in a more central position who in turn can exploit the gaps in the opposition's defence. On the defensive side, Full Backs, help counter the opposition by effectively man marking opponent Wingers and stop their crosses from reaching the box or the threats from their Inside Forwards.

 

Do's & Dont's:

For example, a striker's role is closely linked with the midfielders behind him. Wide men affect the responsibilities of full backs and central midfield pairings have a massive responsibility in the team, depending on your formation, so it's vital we know and understand the interpretation of these roles and how well and effective these work together, or how badly some of the roles turn out to be in close proximity.

Goalkeepers - Sweeper Keepers basically do a Sweepers job so pairing them up with sweepers is a bad idea as they would walk in each other's way. Sweepers are better suited having a regular Goalkeeper behind them.

Defenders - From all the possible pairings in your defensive line there's two that you may want to avoid. Ball Playing Defenders play through balls so the increased creativity demands possession at the back in the form of a Central Defender. Pairing a Ball Playing Defender with a Limited Defender who yanks the ball forward at every opportunity is therefore not recommended. Same goes for two Ball Playing Defenders who, paired up, play with too much creativity and sharply increases the risk of losing possession due to the many risky passes.

Midfielders - Your central midfield has to provide defensive cover, link play and forward runs, so you need to pick roles to cover all of these. A 2-man midfield will often be outnumbered in football so it's crucial to offer protection to your defence first in the form of a Central Midfielder or Deep Lying Playmaker. Having a Ball Winning Midfielder as one of the two is very risky as he does not hold position, due to that tendancy to go searching to win the ball, and this can significantly expose your team. 3-man midfields are in the majority of cases built around triangular set ups, with 1 player at the base protecting the defence, or at the head, spearheading the attack. A flat midfield trio reduces passing options considerably, the only real benefit is making your midfield harder to play through, so a triangular shape is generally more effective.

Wide men - Plan first how many wide players you are using before you decide on their roles. Having lone wide players automatically reduces the contribution on either end as he is expected to get all the way down the flanks, as well as defend. Playing 2 wide players offers more room for specialism, with players able to be selected on being individually good defensively, or offensively, without having the be particularly proficient in the other. Wing Backs and Wingers will in most cases walk in each other's way as they are instructed to cover the same space so it's much more effective to go with Full Backs, who defend, and Wingers, who attack. Or Wing Backs, who overlap Inside Forwards that cut inside when moving towards the box.

Forwards - It's recommended to base your attacking chances around multiple routes of attack. This is needed to prevent the opposition defenders succeeding at their main job, nullifying your attack. Covering the flanks with Wide Men is one. The other is right through the middle. There are those who mainly focus on creating and those whose main focus lies on scoring. One depends largely on the other. Creators: Defensive Forwards, Deep Lying Forwards, Advanced Playmakers, Trequartistas and Wingers. Scorers: Advanced Forwards and Poachers. It obviously doesn't mean that creators don't score and scorers don't create but when pairing them up these combinations tend to be more effective. The other forwards, Inside Forwards, Complete Forwards and Target Men, do a lot of both -creating and scoring- and due to their strength and aerial Target Men in particular benefit from having Wingers on the flanks who provide them with crosses.

 

Player Roles - Description:

Goalkeepers

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Defenders

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Midfielders

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Forwards

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Player Roles - Attributes:

  • Primary Attributes - attributes needed to successfully perform a specific player role.
  • Secondary Attributes - attributes needed to distinguish good from great players for a specific player role.

Goalkeepers

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Defenders

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Midfielders

UrQntTB.png

 

Forwards

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Very nice guide Bati! It will help many people and thanks for the efforts you put in this guide.

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A massive effort @BatiGoal 

Thank you very much .. still struggling to make my own tactic .. Hope this will help me 

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'Mousa Dembele', Not 'Moussa Dembele'.

Mousa Dembele -> Tottenham Hotspur

Moussa Dembele -> Celtic

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4 hours ago, Roffatje said:

Very nice guide Bati! It will help many people and thanks for the efforts you put in this guide.

Welcome. Yes, hopefully it helps many people.

4 hours ago, Sousa_XI said:

A massive effort @BatiGoal 

Thank you very much .. still struggling to make my own tactic .. Hope this will help me 

Thanks. Keep working on your tactics. You'll get there if you keep testing and experimenting.

1 hour ago, ster3675 said:

Mousa Dembele -> Tottenham Hotspur

Moussa Dembele -> Celtic

Fixed. Thanks.

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I'm really happy you've presented your own version of this table and I'm glad it's not identical to the original as it shows your view on certain stats/roles.  And I believe we have previously established that many of these are somewhat subjective.

Soooo...... how many questions/arguments/comments do you want on your differences from the original? :P

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41 minutes ago, veerus said:

I'm really happy you've presented your own version of this table and I'm glad it's not identical to the original as it shows your view on certain stats/roles.  And I believe we have previously established that many of these are somewhat subjective.

Soooo...... how many questions/arguments/comments do you want on your differences from the original? :P

I was asked to do a newbie guide by Dec and we both agreed on these updates. 

But you're right, they are subjective hence the update. I believe every FMM series brings a slightly different interpretation of these roles and we need to respond by analyzing their behaviour in-game and update as we decode them further.

They're by no means written in stone, they're simply my findings since the release of the game. If people disagree with any of the primary or secondary attributes I'd love to hear it. I can always do additional research and testing and edit the tables in the OP accordingly.

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5 hours ago, BatiGoal said:

they are subjective hence the update. I believe every FMM series brings a slightly different interpretation of these roles and we need to respond by analyzing their behaviour in-game and update as we decode them further.

Perhaps the subjectiveness could be somewhat because the same roles used for different players can have different results.

Which is why "Role Traits" is a thing. For example "Hugs line" and "Cuts Inside" is completely opposite but both neutral roles for a winger (black words in the role traits page), so functionally they could be work quite differently.

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Good guide but I don't quite agree with the part where you said that wingers and wingbacks would walk into each other. 

I play a 4-2-3-1 with short passing and I use wingbacks with wingers with a balance mentality. The idea was to prevent my CBs form playing balls which they still do but the more important reason was to give my 2 CMs passing options when in possession because when the other players are marked they throw the ball long and loose it or go back but with the wingbacks they have that option at left or right and on the other hand the wingback being with the ball would pull out the opposition players creating spaces for my attacking players to move into.

I've got pacy wingbacks so it's not a problem when defending and I use the offside trap    

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29 minutes ago, Dar J said:

Good guide but I don't quite agree with the part where you said that wingers and wingbacks would walk into each other. 

I play a 4-2-3-1 with short passing and I use wingbacks with wingers with a balance mentality. The idea was to prevent my CBs form playing balls which they still do but the more important reason was to give my 2 CMs passing options when in possession because when the other players are marked they throw the ball long and loose it or go back but with the wingbacks they have that option at left or right and on the other hand the wingback being with the ball would pull out the opposition players creating spaces for my attacking players to move into.

I've got pacy wingbacks so it's not a problem when defending and I use the offside trap    

It can work but it isn't effective. Your CMs not having decent options to play through balls / forward to more attacking players has more to do with not having open players in front of them, so I would search for better options up front rather then leaving things as they are. Like I said, ideally, wing backs need space in front of them, which they don't have now, but they do with IFs that cut inside for example. So yes, it can work, but it isn't great.

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31 minutes ago, BatiGoal said:

It can work but it isn't effective. Your CMs not having decent options to play through balls / forward to more attacking players has more to do with not having open players in front of them, so I would search for better options up front rather then leaving things as they are. Like I said, ideally, wing backs need space in front of them, which they don't have now, but they do with IFs that cut inside for example. So yes, it can work, but it isn't great.

I've played 4 seasons and it's working for me so far

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3 hours ago, Dar J said:

I've played 4 seasons and it's working for me so far

Mine are too but I'm always looking for little improvements. If my CMs play back or wide too often I'd want to correct that and give them more options to pass forward through the middle or to wingers on the flank. A back pass is OK but shouldn't happen regularly. If your CMs play back to WB, and I say 'back' because they can't be in an advanced position since in most cases those wingers are occupying that space in front of them, then we should tweak something, and I say that with the best intentions, mate. Never stop analyzing and being critical of your tactical set ups as there's always room for improvements somewhere on the pitch ;)

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Let's talk about BBM. In my current career, I've gotten some great mileage out of a 2x BBM midfield in a 4222. When I was considering which players to use, I placed very little emphasis on tackling and shooting (not realizing they were primary stats on this table).

Looking back thru the stats of the games, I noticed that the BBMs didn't shoot often (1-2 shots per game at most) or tackle (0-2 tackles in most games). What I needed my BBMs to do is to provide numbers in defense and transition to support quickly on offense which they did great. But they don't specialize in shooting or tackling as those attributes are secondary based on where the players and the ball happen to be. 

Their main role is to race up and down the field and be the team's engine. As such, I think shooting and tackling should be secondary which complements other related secondary stats of movement and positioning. However they are still midfielders with ball at their feet often so passing, decisions and dribbling should be added as primary in addition to teamwork and stamina.

I would also argue to add a bit of creativity and technique as secondary stats. Basically a BBM is a mix of CM and AP kind of like a CF is a mix of all forward roles. 

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Three points:

  • Firstly, do these tips apply to both engines as I know that tactically they are different.
  • Secondly, with the BBM you have put shooting and defending as primary attributes but I've used Schneiderlin who has 9 shooting and managed an average rating of nearly 8 in a season
  • Lastly, I see a lot of emphasis put on balance but there are two roles, DW and WM, who actually bring balance and there next to no one who play those roles naturally.

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48 minutes ago, veerus said:

Let's talk about BBM. In my current career, I've gotten some great mileage out of a 2x BBM midfield in a 4222. When I was considering which players to use, I placed very little emphasis on tackling and shooting (not realizing they were primary stats on this table).

Looking back thru the stats of the games, I noticed that the BBMs didn't shoot often (1-2 shots per game at most) or tackle (0-2 tackles in most games). What I needed my BBMs to do is to provide numbers in defense and transition to support quickly on offense which they did great. But they don't specialize in shooting or tackling as those attributes are secondary based on where the players and the ball happen to be. 

Their main role is to race up and down the field and be the team's engine. As such, I think shooting and tackling should be secondary which complements other related secondary stats of movement and positioning. However they are still midfielders with ball at their feet often so passing, decisions and dribbling should be added as primary in addition to teamwork and stamina.

I would also argue to add a bit of creativity and technique as secondary stats. Basically a BBM is a mix of CM and AP kind of like a CF is a mix of all forward roles. 

You haven't tried Pogba as a B2B then

He takes at least 4 shots per game as a CM not to talk of when I play him as a B2B and I hate it so I play him as a DLP and he still shoots sometimes. So what am I saying, look at the role trait, Pogba has that first time shot that I hate  

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16 minutes ago, Granit Xhaxa said:

Three points:

  • Firstly, do these tips apply to both engines as I know that tactically they are different.
  • Secondly, with the BBM you have put shooting and defending as primary attributes but I've used Schneiderlin who has 9 shooting and managed an average rating of nearly 8 in a season
  • Lastly, I see a lot of emphasis put on balance but there are two roles, DW and WM, who actually bring balance and there next to no one who play those roles naturally.

I use DW when the opposition are completing lots of crosses and I tried WM thinking they would go for early crosses rather than running much with the ball but they tend to pass it in to the CMs of back to the FBs they only run when The ball is pass into space 

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This is absolutely fantastic. The only other thing I would mention is that due to differences in the EME & OME the same tactics & player roles are unlikely to work exactly the same.

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42 minutes ago, Dar J said:

You haven't tried Pogba as a B2B then

He takes at least 4 shots per game as a CM not to talk of when I play him as a B2B and I hate it so I play him as a DLP and he still shoots sometimes. So what am I saying, look at the role trait, Pogba has that first time shot that I hate  

Pogba is not a typical player. He's a freak. A single player shouldn't affect a guide on the entire position. The tries first time shots is a good trait to avoid in this role and that is a very valuable caveat that should be added to the description in the OP.

All I'm saying is that if you wanted a guy to run all over midfield and control the game based on 2-3 main stats, you would likely consider dribbling/passing/decisions over tackling/shooting. 

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37 minutes ago, veerus said:

Pogba is not a typical player. He's a freak. A single player shouldn't affect a guide on the entire position. The tries first time shots is a good trait to avoid in this role and that is a very valuable caveat that should be added to the description in the OP.

All I'm saying is that if you wanted a guy to run all over midfield and control the game based on 2-3 main stats, you would likely consider dribbling/passing/decisions over tackling/shooting. 

Maybe I won't worry about Shooting  but tackling should be important because he comes back to help the defence

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@veerus

I knew 'shooting' on BBM would come back to haunt me :) in your player roles post I mentioned my doubts on this attr. being primary as imo it's an attr. that makes the difference between good and great BBMs so should be demoted. Well, due to comments and little support I decided to just leave it be and not simply change everything according to my views alone. 

It still is imo a sec. attr. as is dribbling btw and attributes such as technique, those are typical attr. that makes a good player become a great one. So the more this discussion goes on the more I'm inclined to demote 'shooting'.

Sometimes it's hard to distinguish between primary and secondary attr. but you(we) should ask ourselves the questions:

  • Primary Attr. - Is he able to perform his role to an average level if he's lacking this attr.?
  • Secondary Attr. - Will having this attr. supplement any of the primary ones thus making him a better player within his role?

It's a fine line for some of the roles and attr. and it's very likely that with so many managers and opinions we'll never come to a definite agreement on at least some of the specific roles. But that doesn't mean we can't talk endlessly about it ;)

 

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6 hours ago, Granit Xhaxa said:

Three points:

  • Firstly, do these tips apply to both engines as I know that tactically they are different.
  • Secondly, with the BBM you have put shooting and defending as primary attributes but I've used Schneiderlin who has 9 shooting and managed an average rating of nearly 8 in a season
  • Lastly, I see a lot of emphasis put on balance but there are two roles, DW and WM, who actually bring balance and there next to no one who play those roles naturally.

First point- EME. 

Second point- Agree. As explained in the post above. Shooting may get demoted soon if I don't hear any counter arguments from anyone.

Third point- Do you mean no one has it as their prefered role? Lots of players play in that position naturally but don't go by what their prefered or suggested role is. That can change by the week/month as attr. numbers move due to training, game time or injuries. Better to look at the required attr. yourself and base your judgement on that alone.

5 hours ago, Jack said:

This is absolutely fantastic. The only other thing I would mention is that due to differences in the EME & OME the same tactics & player roles are unlikely to work exactly the same.

Thanks mate. Good point.

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36 minutes ago, BatiGoal said:

Sometimes it's hard to distinguish between primary and secondary attr. but you(we) should ask ourselves the questions:

  • Primary Attr. - Is he able to perform his role to an average level if he's lacking this attr.?
  • Secondary Attr. - Will having this attr. supplement any of the primary ones thus making him a better player within his role?

It's always easier to critique others' work than your own. Your post didn't offer a lot of new info just better presentation and yet here we are. :)

Let's do an exercise. Forget what we are discussing. It's irrelevant for now.

I want to create a new role in football which will revolutionize the sport! I want a player who runs nonstop in the middle of the pitch, helping on defense when needed, but with a primary task of getting the ball forward by running or passing it forward into the final third. You want this guy to do a little bit of everything in midfield, really. Let's call this new role Superman. 

Based on that description, what 3 primary stats would you want your Superman to have? Not including stamina because that's a given. 

Also, name 3 secondary stats. 

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If you want superman take Pogba. :)

Ok, so you want a BBM. But don't set numbers on how many prim/sec attributes needed. Doesn't make sense and that's not how it works. It differs per role dependant on their duties, could be 3 or 4 or 5, and don't forget to ask yourself my questions you quoted.

In the table I'd demote shooting. Keep tackling, teamwork, stamina and add passing since it's just too essential for a midfielder. Lacking in this department would make for a below average BBM.

As I wrote in the OP, nothing's written in stone and the table is a mere starting point. With enough discusion in here and with a much larger variety of opinions and arguments, not only yours or mine, we can alter some of the roles to (near) perfection.

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I suppose it's a management style thing then.  I did ask myself those questions.  I feel my original post answers them neatly as it fits my style.  If I wanted a midfielder who needs to tackle, I would play a DLP or BWM that's why I don't value tackling as much as you guys seem to.  

2 hours ago, BatiGoal said:

In the table I'd demote shooting. Keep tackling, teamwork, stamina and add passing since it's just too essential for a midfielder. Lacking in this department would make for a below average BBM.

Emphasis above mine..  Your comment makes me think that on some level you agree with me.  Of all the midfielder roles listed above (not including BBM), only one has tackle listed as primary.  Sorry. :P  Just being picky.  I understand observations by only 2 people are unlikely to be conclusive.

2 hours ago, BatiGoal said:

If you want superman take Pogba. :)

As per @Dar J reply above, no thanks!!  He shoots too much and loses possession since most of those are terrible shots! (also in real life, god, it frustrates me when he does it).  As I mentioned above, and especially in your agreement of removing shooting from a primary stat, the BBM description should come with a warning - DO NOT USE PLAYERS WHO HAVE "takes first time shots" AS A ROLE TRAIT!!!

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1 hour ago, veerus said:

Your comment makes me think that on some level you agree with me.  Of all the midfielder roles listed above (not including BBM), only one has tackle listed as primary.  Sorry. :P  Just being picky.

Two. Ball Winning Midfielder and Defensive Winger ;)

Box to Box is both defensive and offensive. Maybe these don't do a lot of defending in your tactical set ups but in others' they might do a lot more defending than attacking and tackling will prove crucial at those times

1 hour ago, veerus said:

As I mentioned above, and especially in your agreement of removing shooting from a primary stat, the BBM description should come with a warning - DO NOT USE PLAYERS WHO HAVE "takes first time shots" AS A ROLE TRAIT!!!

This is something worth mentioning in the more in-depth guide that should be out at a later stage. Good point.

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On 31/01/2017 at 18:26, BatiGoal said:

maintain a 5 attacking and 5 defending outfielders balance

This is very subjective and I would like to know what you think an attacking and defending outfielder is and what player roles are which.

In my I opinion I think that an attacking outfielder is a player that shoots and a defending outfielder is one which tackles based on the player role.

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2 hours ago, Granit Xhaxa said:

In my I opinion I think that an attacking outfielder is a player that shoots and a defending outfielder is one which tackles based on the player role.

What would you call a BBM then? :laugh:

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17 minutes ago, veerus said:

What would you call a BBM then? :laugh:

Defending as all the successful ones that I've used have higher tackling than shooting. An additional point is that whilst anyone with an opportunity to shoot will shoot but not everyone with the opportunity to tackle will tackle.

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3 hours ago, Granit Xhaxa said:

This is very subjective and I would like to know what you think an attacking and defending outfielder is and what player roles are which.

Defending outfielders are players that will primarily defend, attacking outfielders are those that will primarily attack. BBMs do both but depending on your formation and match settings he'll do one more than the other.

I think the player role description table provides enough clarity on this.

 

3 hours ago, Granit Xhaxa said:

In my I opinion I think that an attacking outfielder is a player that shoots and a defending outfielder is one which tackles based on the player role.

Attacking outfielders don't shoot only. They also pass the ball to your forwards and put them in a scoring position, they provide assists. Think wingers or adv. playmakers.

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8 minutes ago, BatiGoal said:

Defending outfielders are players that will primarily defend, attacking outfielders are those that will primarily attack. BBMs do both but depending on your formation and match settings he'll do one more than the other.

This is an interesting point. Would you say that in attacking formations you might value shooting over or equal to tackling compared to defensive/balanced formations where tackling is significantly more important compared to shooting? Or would you say that even in attacking formations, you'd rather have your BBM pass to the forwards instead of shooting?

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