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Career Introducing The WEIPER - How To Make A Goal Scoring Legend

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5 hours ago, Scratch said:

Part 4 - Tactics

Did I say we were finally going to get into the squad? I guess I lied!

Before you can start shaping your squad you need to know what sort of tactics you are going to be using. You don't need to know the exact tactic, but you do need to know the basics, such as whether you want wingers or IFs, tall strikers or shorties, how many midfielders you'll play, etc. I've had some interesting saves where I changed tactics mid-way through and ended up not having enough players for each position...

For this save, I'm falling back onto my tried and tested tactic, which I'll talk more about below. Before I get to that, I need to say something. But before I get to that, I need to say something else! Talk about complicated. First...


A Disclaimer

The thing I see people asking for the most, whether it's here or on Discord, is help with tactics.

"How do I score more goals?", "Why can't I hold a lead?", "I keep losing, help!", "Where can I find a good tactic?"... And I see people give great, well thought out tactical advice that works.

There are a lot of people who give great advice, but I'd have to say @DanEnglish has really stood out over the last several years as The Tactical Master. I have the utmost respect for Dan and his depth of tactical understanding and what he can achieve with it. There's no doubt that optimising your tactics can be a game changer if you are playing reaslistically.

But here's the thing: I am NOT playing realistically. I am breaking the game. Which leads me on to...


Tactics Are Not Important!

At least not in the way most people think...

If I'm going to score 3K goals with one striker, it's not the tactic which does most of the work.

The single most important thing is creating a massive skill imbalance between your team and the opposition. Basically you want the equivalent of your team being Man City's first team while your opponent is St Paddy's Under 7s team. Once you have achieved that imbalance you will win and score a lot of goals, no matter which tactic you use. 

Where the tactic does come in is in directing where the goals come from. For a lone striker goal scoring career you obviously want them to come from the striker. The tactic is important to ensure this happens and it's not other people scoring. But the key point here is that the tactic by itself is not going to get the results you want.

With that said, let's move on to the tactic I'm using.


How I Roll...

I'm using the same tactic I used for the Sesko 3KC a couple of years ago. Back then I just said it was the Balanced variation of my TT Blaster tactic with the two extra strikers moved back into CM roles. This time around I will go into more detail.

First, here are the formation, roles and Shape instructions:


Yes, I only have 1 in the back line. Once you have a dominant team you don't need more than that. That player does need to be fast and have good positioning etc, which is why we're talking about the tactic before I put the squad together. I'm also using wingers (who will need great Crossing) and a TF (who will need great Aerial).  

I go back and forth about whether I should use WBs or IWBs. I leave it on IWBs, but most of the time they stay wide and act as WBs anyway, I think because the CMs stay in place and the IWBs have no space to come inside. No matter, the tactic works, so I'm okay with that.

I don't have any RPs or BBMs because those roles score too many goals. I want the most chances to go to my TF!!

Likewise the attacking midfielder is an AM because the other roles score too much. The AM still scores too much sometime, so I will rotate players through that position until I find one that assists more than they score. If the AM takes a lot of shots in a particular game (which happens sometimes), I will swap them with another midfielder or even move that position back to a DMC one.

A lot of maximising your strikers goals comes down to making sure he's taking most of the shots. Hence you want Ws who will put the ball on his head 3 yards out, AMs who will pass to him rather than take shots, a center line that will dominate the game and set up attacks without being a goal threat themselves etc.

If we are losing a game once I've sub my striker off, I may mix all of that up and do things like turn the AM into an SS, or the CMs into RPs etc. Anything is fair game once my main striker is off.

As for the Shape instructions, I go with Balanced as everyone sits back a little deeper leaving more of the shots to the striker. Any more attacking and too many other players pinch goals. Later in the save when my team is more dominant, I will often turn on Wide, which creates more space for my striker, and Fast, which allows us to bamboozle the opposition - but neither works well until the squad is super powered. 

Next up is the Defensive instructions:


Not much to say here. I find we do better if we press all over. I sometimes turn on Offside Trap as I figure it should be easy to spring the offside trap with only one person in the line! But mostly I leave it off because when things go wrong with one at the back, you can get into real trouble - and having the player stay back a little might give them more time to recover. 

Here are the Attacking instructions:


I tweak these a fair bit and can never tell which works better! Sometimes I go with Through Ball instead of Run At Defence. Sometimes I go with Mixed passing focus instead of Centre. I switch these things up if the tactic stops working quite so well, then switch it back later for the same reason. 

With Early Crosses, I normally have this off at the beginning of the save, until the striker is strong in the air. Because Weiper starts with 14 Aerial I figured I'd turn it on from the start, even though I normally wait until they hit 16 or so. I turn it on as I find a) it gets the ball into the striker quickly, before too many other players get forward and want to shoot, and b) once the striker is good in the air and has decent pace and movement, they have a reasonable chance of scoring from this. 

Lastly, the corner tactic:


Yes, I'm still using the corner tactic that was broken a few years back: everyone stay back, except for my striker who marks the keeper, while the corner taker aims at the penalty spot. It's not broken anymore, but I still score reasonably well from this. 

I don't bother with any other set piece instructions, except to put my striker on pens, free kicks from the two central positions outside the penalty area and to get the best crossers taking the corners (I always have a long list of takers so we don't end up with the striker taking them, which they seem to like doing).


I used to watch games more closely and make changes if we weren't getting many chances. I'd do things like move the AM to PF on the right of the TF (the right side, not the left, so that the TF still gets the corners) if the TF was up against too many defenders. These days I'm a bit lazier and less likely to do this. I'm probably leaving goals on the table, but I still score a lot. Maybe I'll do that in this career, but most likely not.


Anyway, I better leave it there for now. Thanks for reading!


Is it possible to join the Discord group. Can someone post the link? Thanks .

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8 hours ago, hoon87 said:

I'm enjoying it
Why didn't you consider Shaqueel?

Thanks! I didn't consider Shaqueel simply because too many other people use him! And as @Dai_ says, his hidden attributes could be better.

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4 hours ago, Dai_ said:

Also, @Scratch, using a target man? One of their "roles" is to hold the ball up and bring others into play. We don't want that. Not near the opposing penalty area anyway. We want to keep the ball all to ourselves. Surely with the balanced approach and balanced defensive line you'll be deep enough for an AF to exploit the space behind opposition defences? Especially with early crosses on? I've never used TF for this type of challenge and ever since your sniper tactic (which used AF, didn't it?) I swear it's super effective. Granted, that was using a defensive set-up. 🤷


4 hours ago, DanEnglish said:

Yeah I was surprised by that also. Was expecting him to use a Poacher. As a Poacher doesn’t really contribute to build up play, just stays in/around the box waiting for crosses or through balls.

I've just always used a TF with this, for at least 4 or 5 versions now. I did use AF back in the day with the Sniper tactic, but when I went full on Aerial using TF just seemed to make sense, as I wanted everyone to look for him and stick it on his head. It just seemed to me that people would play more through balls to a poacher or an AF rather than aiming at his head, but I never tested that and I have heard people say a P will just stay in the box (which is what I want). 

Maybe I should experiment with this a bit. I mean TF has done great for me, but maybe something else would be better.

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Nice work with the write up and transparency. I use Targetman for my 1ks too. I find it makes everyone aim for him with crosses etc. poacher works well too but TM just pips it in tests I find. 

I’ll be starting a new 1k after losing my Shaq one and also getting bored of my Wales save so I might park it for a bit. I’m still not brave enough to go one at the back from the off 😂 

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14 hours ago, Scratch said:

Thanks! I didn't consider Shaqueel simply because too many other people use him! And as @Dai_ says, his hidden attributes could be better.

Thank you. Please write the next part. I'm looking forward to it. 😁

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8 hours ago, MikeF said:

Nice work with the write up and transparency. I use Targetman for my 1ks too. I find it makes everyone aim for him with crosses etc. poacher works well too but TM just pips it in tests I find. 

I’ll be starting a new 1k after losing my Shaq one and also getting bored of my Wales save so I might park it for a bit. I’m still not brave enough to go one at the back from the off 😂 

Thanks. I tried a few games with P instead of TM and honestly couldn't see much difference! Might continue to play with it, but I'm more than happy with TM.

You certainly get smacked badly with one at the back, especially at the beginning. At least I do normally, but not so much in this save - up to November now and doing really well, even in Europe...

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3 hours ago, Scratch said:

Thanks. I tried a few games with P instead of TM and honestly couldn't see much difference! Might continue to play with it, but I'm more than happy with TM.

You certainly get smacked badly with one at the back, especially at the beginning. At least I do normally, but not so much in this save - up to November now and doing really well, even in Europe...

Perhaps at the start is he’s fast but not tall yet P suits and if he’s tall but slow TM suits until he’s maxed out. Or no difference as you say!

Europe is where I got spanked trying 1 at the back in a triple threat test. Maybe I’ll revisit when I decide if I’m doing a lone striker or double trouble.  

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Part 5 - Buying And Selling Players

Sorry for the delay. My old phone got the green line of death, so I got a new one which distracted me from FMM. It shouldn't affect this apart from some different looking screenshots at some point.

Let's get on with things. I was going to look at sorting out your squad, but I think we need to talk about some fundamentals first: the philosophy you need and how to buy and sell players for the best price.


The Philosophy

Normally you'd come in, assess your squad, and work out who you want to keep and who you want to replace. If you are breaking the game, you come in knowing you need to replace everyone. They just aren't good enough to get you to where you need to go.

Maybe there are a couple of players you'll keep for a couple of years as you build the squad up. Maybe if you are at Man City you might keep some players longer than that. But in general, everyone must go...

I did a rebuild of Newcastle not long ago and I kept Trippier and Joelinton for their leadership skills. They played in the first year, came off the bench in the second year and were gone by the third. I also kept Isak and Bruno G because they were decent players, but only for a few years. Everyone else left, almost all in the first season. For Celtic, I'll keep Callum MacGregor as our captain and maybe O'Reilly and Hatate as solid first season options in the midfield as my wonderkids level up. But that's about it.

Did I say wonderkids? Yep. At Celtic, I'm not going to have the budget or reputation to sign top players at the height of their skills - I'm going to have to rely on wonderkids. But that's okay, because that is the best path to glory anyway. Get a young player with lots of room to develop and play him for a couple of seasons and he will be better than the top players in the game. We are going to have a whole team of these youngsters.

The first 6 months are going to be a little interesting when you have a whole team of wonderkids. Plenty of times I've flirted with getting sacked. But it comes good about 6 months in and you can normally put in a late run for the title. At Celtic you generally don't even have to worry about that, because the competition is so weak.

Now of course I could go with a more conservative approach and keep most of the team and bring the wonderkids through more slowly. At Celtic I'd walk the league in the first season and my striker would score a bucket load - but that would slow down our ultimate destination, so we're better to bite the bullet and jump in with both feet. There may be more of an argument to go cautious in a tougher league, but I still generally go aggressive.

Over time regens will come in and replace the original wonderkid generation, but I'll leave that to later. For now, the two key points are a) no players at the club at the start are going to be good enough to stay and b) the best path is to buy wonderkids and play them.


How To Sell Players

I can already hear some people saying "but no one will buy my players". That's been true to an extent in previous versions, but it's never been easier to sell your whole squad than in FMM24. To do so, you need to use the "Offer out on loan, then switch to transfer" hack.

Note: I don't think I've said this, but if you want to break the game, you need to take advantage of all it's idiosyncrasies.

It works exactly as it sounds. Offer your players out on loan, turning on the Add to Loan list option. When a bid comes in you change the type to Transfer, set the amount at a little under double their value and start the negotiation. You might get lucky and get more than their value. You may only get about 80% (this is pretty common). You may get even less than that.

It's nowhere near as powerful as it was a few years ago when you could make a killing this way, but when you sell your whole squad, you'll raise enough to buy your wonderkids (especially when you factor in replacing players with a high salary with youngsters on less).

Let's look at an example. I offered Kobayashi out for loan:


and when an offer came in , I switched the type to Transfer:


It came up with £1.8M already in the transfer fee field, so I know they are willing to at least pay that much! Sometimes it comes up with £0 and negotiations are much harder. In this case I went back with £8M - pretty unlikely, but hey, no harm in trying:


Unfortunately they weren't happy with this and once I hit Suggest Terms it went back back to £1.8M:


I tried again at £6M, but no cigar. Then I tried £5M and bingo!


That's actually a really good result for a player valued at £2.8M. You are very unlikely to get any more than double the valuation and often it can be down to 80ish% of their value. Sometimes it can be even lower than that when the club buying has no money (so it's better to have rich clubs offering to loan your players!).

Anyway, rinse and repeat and do this for the whole squad.*
*Though I will talk more about which players you may want to consider keeping in a future installment.

Note: This may not work so well at a lower / poorer club, as it can be hard to get good prices for your players. One thing I've done instead, in the lower leagues, is to just release everyone the board will let you release. That frees up a lot of cash you can use to buy players etc. The secret is to make sure that you move all your transfer budget into your wage budget beforehand, otherwise you will lose the payout fee. 


How To Buy Players

There are some tricks to buying players for the best possible price as well. Note that some people here will think this crosses the line, but as I said before: when you're trying to break the game you take advantage of everything the game lets you do (short of reloading etc). 

It's probably best to start with the example for this one - let's use Weiper himself. Note: I reloaded twice here to show different scenarios (reloading being a no-no, but I didn't use it to get an advantage, only to show you what can happen).

When I try to buy Weiper I get this as the starting screen:


Not too bad, I can afford that! But what happens when I suggest terms?


Oh dear. £40M? Gulp. But I can actually get him for a lot less.

The key is to be ruthless with them. Call them and put in a very low offer, then say "nah, I think I changed my mind" and hang up. Call back an hour later and say "hmm, maybe we'll buy him, but only if you give us really good deal". They will bring the price right down... 

So, step one... Set the Sell On Percentage to 0 and make the Transfer Fee really low, or even £0 (not actually necessary):


But then, before you Suggest Terms, hang up on them! By that, I mean click Close. Then open it again. You'll see something like this:


It's still set to £0, but the percentage is up to 15%. It doesn't really matter. Just move the percentage to 50% and press Suggest Terms. They will then come back with the absolute lowest possible price they are willing to accept:


Okay, that's looking a lot better. Now at this point you have two options:

  1. Buy him for that price (if you can afford it), but note, you can often (but not always) drop the percentage to 0%; OR
  2. Buy him for 66% of that price (or just over) with a 50% Sell On Percentage (sometime you might need to put percentage to 0 and close the screen and open it again, but that's normally not needed).

I normally go for the second as I need to strengthen my squad as much as possible NOW and buying everyone for 66% lets me get a better squad. By the time I come to regret it later (if and when I sell them), losing 50% of their sale price won't be nearly as important (and I normally have more money than I can use later anyway).

If I'd done that in this case, I would have bought him for £14.5M: 


But I need to save as much money as I can for the rest of the squad and they were willing to include Maeda in the deal as an exchange player. In general you can at least get the value of the swap player taken off the price before calculating the 66%, but sometimes they value the swap player more than his value and will give you a better deal - such as in this case: 


So basically it's a straight up swap and I get to keep all my cash for other players.


I think I better leave this for here for now. I'll be back sometime with a "Sorting Out Your Squad" piece that builds on top of this.

Thanks for reading!


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17 minutes ago, DanEnglish said:

These are damn good posts 🔥 

Thanks! I will have a bit more on tactics at some point, but not for quite a while. I have a whole queue of stuff to include first...

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Interesting re the loan to buy trick. Part exchanges are also a good way of shifting deadwood when signing new players  but you’re more limited by who is interested in who. 

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On 06/04/2024 at 02:00, MikeF said:

Interesting re the loan to buy trick. Part exchanges are also a good way of shifting deadwood when signing new players  but you’re more limited by who is interested in who. 

Yeah, true that. I didn't put it in the write up, but if I want to exchange more, I will transfer list some of my players, as teams are more likely to find someone they want to exchange. But I don't normally worry about going to that extreme these days - I used to use it when I couldn't sell someone, but I can get rid of everyone these days, so less need.

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When do strikers usually replace them?65/70? 

From the second season, the opposing teams start to come out defensively, and the striker can't score a goal, what should I do?

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Part 6 - Rebuilding Your Squad

In the last part we looked at the general philosophy (sell everyone!) and how to buy and sell players for the best possible value. Now we're going to look at how I put that stuff into practice to rebuild my squad.


Bid For The Key Player(s)

The first thing I do is to put in a bid for my key players. In this case, it's is a lone striker save, so we're talking about the main striker - but if you were doing a two striker save (ie Double Trouble challenge) or something else, you'd obviously put a bid in for all your selected players. 

It's worth remembering that I already know exactly which player I will be using (Weiper), as I have already scouted out the alternatives in test saves, as mentioned in previous installments of this series. At this point all that is left to do is put in a bid. I won't repeat the screenshot from Part 5, but my bid for Weiper was an exchange for Maeda with a 50% sell on fee.

Note: I say "put a bid in" rather than "buy" because we are not going to advance the game date for a good while yet! There's still a lot to do on this very long first day. 


Taking Team Dynamics Into Account

One of the first things I do, when it comes to checking out the squad I inherited is to look at the Team Dynamics scores. And the Celtic squad is great!! 


Sometimes you inherit a squad with some pretty bad problems and it can be a bit of work to fix up. I'm very lucky in this case.

Even if you have good scores at the start, it's important to understand who are positive/negatives influences, so I go through and look at who's influencing each area. For example, here are the players influencing our Professionalism score: 


Now... what do I do with that information? Well, if I was just playing a normal save I probably wouldn't do much at all in this case, given I have A for most areas. But this isn't a normal save - I want to maximize everything and I'm just about to rip this squad apart. So...

First, I am going to make sure that as I rebuild the squad, all of those players with a negative influence on any of the first 3 areas (Professionalism, Work Rate and Determination) will leave the club. Youngsters without much value will just be released, but I will try to sell players with any value. Note: I'm less worried about Morale as that is more fluid and can be kept high through other means (more on that later) and Loyalty (as really good players are ambitious and that's not really a bad thing).

Second, I will look closely at those players having a positive influence, especially those who are high in the hierarchy, and see if I can/should keep any of them. I did say "sell everyone" but in practice, it's worth keeping some team leaders to help maintain the good attitude. In this case, I will keep Callum McGregor as our team captain (he'll play in season 1) and Furuhashi as a backup forward (he's the wrong shape, but he'll come off the bench, either as a P or an IF).

Third, as I build my new squad I will pay close attention to the players I bring in and only sign those that will help keep our team dynamics strong. For example, I used to sign Duranville for the right wing in previous versions, but now I don't bother with him because he's lazy (poor judgement is fine as that will improve as he develops):


That said, I might sign someone with poor hidden attributes if I really want them. Hidden attributes can be improved through mentoring and fining etc. It's just I'd much rather sign people who have positive hidden attributes to start with. Maybe I'm lazier these days and don't want to have to micro-manage mentoring for the whole team - I'd much rather have to do it only for a few players.

Anyway, I don't normally sign players with negative hidden attributes. I will sign players that don't have either positive or negative hidden attributes and I jump at signing players with positive hidden attributes (if they are good enough of course). In general I try to keep the balance firmly on the side of signing more players with positive attributes than those with negative ones. 

This approach normal results in getting As for the first 3 areas, which is great. Sometimes it will be Bs and will improve as the new players become more influential etc. If it doesn't improve, I will seek out people within the team who are a positive influence and offer them a new contract with a higher squad role, as that can boost the impact of their influence on the squad. That's normally something that can only happen 6 months in (ie for new players), but I almost never need to do this with the above approach.

Now... all of this may be overkill. I honestly think if you go ahead and sign Duranville as winger or someone like him and didn't 'fix' him, everything will work out wonderfully. You will still have a great career. That's even true of the main striker. It's just I am trying to get everything as optimised as possible, to give us the best possible chance to smash the game.


Review Loans In

Next, I review the players we have loaned into the club.

In the vast majority of cases I immediately cancel the loan and send the player back to his club. That is especially the case if we are paying any of their wage - I need that money for my wonderkids - but I also send back the vast majority of those we aren't paying for. I don't want to be developing other people wonderkids and being back to square one next year. I want to be developing my own.

The only exception is if one of the players loaned in is really good and I think I might not be able to get someone better in that position (taking development into account). That's pretty rare and not the case with Celtic. 

I did think about keeping Adam Idah:


For the following reasons:

  • He'd make a pretty good backup
  • This is the one position where if I bought a wonderkid instead they wouldn't actually start anyway
  • Strikers are the most expensive players to buy and I could use that money elsewhere if I kept him instead of buying someone else
  • I like him and used him a lot a few years ago

But we were paying the full £20K wage for him:


That's £1M per year and I could use that money in my transfer kitty right now, so sanity reasserted itself and I ended the loan.


Review Loans Out

I also review the players who are loaned out.

If they have any value, then we may as well just recall them and sell them. If we are still paying their salary, then we may as well just recall them and sell them. In fact, we may as well just recall them and sell them. 

Like this guy:


I like him (he's Australian!), but he doesn't have a long term future at the club, Melbourne City aren't paying any of his wage and we can probably sell him for £1M or so. Recalled. Sold.

The only people not worth recalling and selling are those with tiny wages and almost no value. Maybe leaving them loaned out will improve their value and we can sell them later.

I generally start with the highest value players and then come back and sell the rest later. I haven't talked it about yet, but a lot happens on the first day (the way I do things) and there is a point where the game seems to lose things (ie forgets about bids I've made or people I've offered out) - so I recall and sell in a couple of waves. Normally that is. This time - well, I forgot to come back and do part B... 


Sign Free Agents

So this may seem a little strange, but I actually go and make offers for free agents I might be interested in before I've gone through each position and worked out what I need. 

Partly this is down to the fact that a) I know I won't keep many of my current squad and b) I only bring in really good free agents - so I don't really need to work out what I need beforehand. And partly it's down to wanting to make sure I get in quick before anyone else signs them.

I look through the free agents for anyone that might be useful, offer them a contract and hit the scout button. For foreign players I generally get the scout report before they've received a work permit, so I can use that to decide if I really want to sign them or not. For non-foreign players, yeah, I often had to make a decision before getting a scout report. Not ideal, but I am not making too many of these signings so getting a couple wrong isn't the end of the world.

So, who do I look for? Well I start by looking for old folk who might round out the squad and be good mentors / influence etc. To do that I order the free agents by caps:


There are a few in that list that look promising. Here's a target forward that would be a good mentor for my striker: 


But given that a) I've chosen a striker with pretty good hidden attributes, and b) Furuhashi will make a good mentor for hidden attributes, the need is less urgent - so I didn't sign him.

Some of the players with a lot of caps might be worth signing to play (rather than just as a mentor), if they are good enough. But I didn't find any that convinced me they would be worth signing. Well except for this guy:


I was a little surprised I could sign him, but he agreed, so in he comes. De Gea isn't in his prime anymore, but he's good enough for Scotland and I've struggled to find really good keepers at the start of the game this year. 

Next, I ordered the list with the youngest players first and looked to see if any of those were promising. I look for players who had been at a big club but didn't make it, as some of these are worth a second chance. For example, this guy might be worth a risk: 


Came through at Tottenham, but was ultimately released. Maybe he'd be worth scouting out to see if he has much potential (more on that later). In this case I decided not to, as I am pretty sure I will sign midfielders that are a lot better than him.

I also browse through the some of the other players, looking for names I recognize that might be worth a bet. But it takes a long time to find players this way and they are generally longshots, so I didn't spend too much time on this and didn't sign anyone else apart from De Gea.

If I was playing in a lower/poorer league I would probably spend a lot more time on free agents. It can really be worth your time to find good youngsters and serviceable squad players. But at Celtic we'll probably struggle to find someone good enough to hold their own, so ultimately I didn't go too deep this time around.


Signing Players With A Release Clause

In some saves, I will load Spain and try to sign a bunch of good youngsters with a low release clause. I didn't bother this time around because it can be a lot of effort to find them - although after you've done it once you will remember some. I'm much more likely to go this route when playing L1 or L2 or some club where I can't generate much money via sales. 

Anyway, if you are going to do this, then the best time is before you advance the date, as players may sign a new contract and have the release clause go up.


Evaluating Players

If I'm playing more realistically, this is a very very important step. You have to understand who you have at the club that will fit into the tactic you've chosen to play and you have to understand where you are weakest, so you can strengthen those positions first. Even if I'm trying to break the game and going to sell almost everyone, I still go through the whole squad.

As I do so, I'm looking at things like:

  • Their age - I'll often sell 30+ year old players while they still have some value (unless they are a good influence on dynamics). The players I value the most are the younger ones (21 and below) as they will develop more quickly.
  • Their skill level (based on their attributes) - whether they look good enough for what I'm wanting.
  • Their potential to improve - I don't trust the star rating from the staff at all, but I do pay attention to the gap between the CA and PA stars (and also other signals just as "lots of potential to improve messages" even though these aren't always accurate).
  • Their impact on dynamics - I may be more inclined to keep a player who is improving our team dynamics.
  • Their shape - for example, I don't want a winger or midfielder who has high shooting for example as I don't want them to shoot from distance, I want them to get the ball into my striker (I spend a lot of time stopping players from scoring! 🙂). I'll talk more about this later.

As it happens, this is just how I evaluate players I'm looking to bring into the club! It's the same thing.

I typically go through the squad a position at a time, looking at who I have, offering out the players I don't want, then I go looking for players who I might add to the squad for that position. 

What I'm trying to achieve here is to have two equal teams that I can rotate each game. I might have a couple of players who play every game (Weiper of course, maybe the best crosser, maybe the keeper), but I will rotate everyone else. I just have two selections saved and load them alternatively before each game. That means I am aiming for 2 players for each position, along with someone who can cover in the case of injuries (whether that is a youngster on the bench or someone else who has been cross-trained).


Positional Requirements

I covered how I evaluate players above, but it's worth concentrating a little more on how I evaluate players for each position. The easiest way to do this is to go through each position my tactic uses and talk about my choices in this save (I don't have a lot of screenshots after GK and CD unfortunately). 

Note: this is NOT a one size fits all thing. I'll be talking about what I need for my tactic, but it may be different for yours.

Goal Keeper

I always try to find a keeper with decent Communication as I think that helps the defense overall. I don't worry about Agility as that seems to be the easiest attribute to train. Probably the most important thing are the hidden attributes. I won't sign anyone who is inconsistent or struggles in big matches etc. 

I didn't think any of the keepers at Celtic would cut it so they all went and I concentrated on bringing in 2 new keepers, one of which would be De Gea on a free. I might have kept Joe Hart for his influence on the team and as mentor etc, but De Gea seemed to be able to offer that, so I just sold Hart. 

This year I have struggled to find good keepers, especially young ones, who have the mix I'm looking for. I've started a few saves as Newcastle and each time I've ended up signing Kobel, who fits the bill quite well, then used him until I find an appropriate regen. I don't have enough money to buy Kobel in this save (if he'd even come), so I went looking at youngsters. I search for GKs with high Comms (and the typical other attributes) and kept bringing down the Comms value until I found some choices. I ended up settling on Urbig:


His Communication is not as high as I'd like, but also not too bad. He needs to level up a fair bit, but the scouts think he has a lot of potential (noting 1.5 gap in the star ratings as well as the potential to improve a lot message) and he does well in big games etc:


The estimated cost is a bit worrying, but in the end I got him for £1.5M plus Oden Thiago Holm.

I'm not 100% sure he's the one for the long term, but he's a decent signing for this point of the save. As I'd also signed De Gea, I decided to loan Urbig out to get some development, so he'd hopefully be ready to replace De Gea at the end of the season (if need be). I just went with a grey keeper as backup as keepers very rarely get injured. As it happens De Gea did get injured in the second half of the season and Urbig came back looking like this: 


It looks like he's maxed out already though, so I will be looking for other options next season. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Development will be a topic for another time.

Central Defender

I use a single CD and my wing back are pushed up, so I need the CD to be fast so that cover the inevitable gaps that arise. For that matter I want my WBs to be fast too. But when I check the Celtic squad, we don't have anyone fast:


When I say fast, 15 is really the minimum for me, but I'd like it higher than that. It's not always possible to get youngsters with a value that high, so I often bring the search down to 14, then 13, then 12 etc. I set the target attribute to Pace once they are signed, and in most cases youngsters can improve quite a lot (but if they don't I move on to the next one). 

Back to Celtic - that have a lot of CDs at the club and I'm only going to need 2 or 3. None of them are fast enough. Carter-Vickers is the fastest and is the best of the existing players, so I could conceivably play him for a season. And I looked at Nawrocki closely. But in the end, they all left and I went looking for fast young CDs. 

I found 3 potential candidates:




I was leaning towards the first two, but the scout reports convinced me to go with Hammer Kjelsen instead of Abbey:




Two things swayed me here:

  • Hammer Kjelsen and Akomeah had clearly better positives than Abbey
  • They also had better gaps with the star ratings (with Abbey only have one star's worth of potential improvement)

None of that is super reliable, but it was enough to sway me into going with Hammer Kjelsen instead of Abbey. We'll see if his Pace improves enough for him to make it at the club in the longer term.

I was happy with those two youngsters, but I didn't find anyone who would be great from day one. I considered keeping Carter-Vickers after all, while the youngsters ramped up - but later in window I worked out that I could sign my old mate Bamba for less than I could get for Carter-Vickers: 


I brought him in to be number 1 in both teams, with the youngsters alternating coming off the bench in each game. Later one will graduate to starting. Bamba for those of you who don't know him, is already very good at the start (as you can see), but also has good potential to improve. 

Wing Backs

I play them as IWBs, but they act like WBs, so I'll just call them WBs. This is where the detail stops a little, as I didn't bother getting full screenshots after the GK and CD positions. 

Anyway, I want players who are fast. I'd like them to have good positioning, but it's not that important in Scotland (especially with a good CD and GK behind them). I don't mind if they are a little more attack minded. Good crossing is a bonus as they will provide some assists that way. 

The Celtic squad is an interesting one, with players like Greg Taylor and Ralston, who used to be decent options, but are now a pale shadow of their former selves, and Barnabei who maybe could do a job for a season or two. In the end I did keep one player: A Johnston at RWB. A bit confusing, because the other player I signed for RWB was M Johnston. I actually messed up my selections and played Max 10 games straight because I confused them!

I did have problems finding WBs that I was happy with on the right side, but the left side was easier with Borza and Araujo coming in, both of whom have done well for me in the past. Araujo is a little too young and raw at the start, but this is Scotland so I can get away with playing him. I also brought Scanlon in as a backup cross LWB and LW. 


I normally sort the WBs and Wingers together, first the left side, then the right. I find that fairly often there is overlap between the two positions (ie players who can play in both positions) so it's useful to consider them together. 

My tactic relies on wingers who have (or can develop) high crossing. I don't worry too much about pace or movement as these will develop well naturally. So when searching for players, I search for those with crossing of at least 15, then bring it down one by one until I find enough potential candidates. I'm largely comparing it to their other attributes (11 or 12 might be fine for a youngster if that's one of their highest attributes). 

I should point out that due to my reliance on crossing, all of my left sided players are left footed and all of my right sided players are right footed. And I try to find wingers with low shooting. I'd love players with the hugs the line trait (and without the cuts inside trait), but these are few and far between these days. Everyone wants to be an IF... 🙄

Anyway, I went for Iling on the LW and he will play every game and be the main corner taker. Bukvic will come off the bench every game for him. On the right, I went with Doak who is pure class, but will take a while to level up. I was running short of money at the end so I kept Hyunjun as the other RW and Vaja who I sent out on loan hoping to improve him. I'm not expecting either to be here long term, but we'll see how they go. Everyone is set to train Crossing. 


Yes, I look at strikers before central midfielders. By this point of sorting the squad I'm generally exhausted and picking some backup strikers for my main striker is much easier than picking 8 midfielders...

I want my backup strikers to be the same shape as my main striker, so they fit the tactic. The exception to this is if they are a good mentor - in that case I will tweak the tactic when they are subbed on. I generally go with younger strikers, but will try to have at least one very good striker who can win the game off the bench while my main striker is still ramping up. 

In this case I kept Furuhashi as a mentor. He will mostly come off the bench as an IF replacing my RW, but can play P if needed. I looked at a number of good young strikers, such as Tezgel, but in the end I decided to keep Hyeon-Gyu who looked the right shape (sent out on loan to see if he improves, can be recalled) and I put all the money I had left into bringing Emegha to the club:


Those of you reading carefully will remember me raving about Omorodion near the start of this series. Emegha is not quite as good and is one year older, but he is an exceptional choice as well. Look at his starting attributes and he has a lot of room to improve as well. He will be our matchwinner off the bench. Actually those of you reading carefully have probably died of old age by this point...

Central Midfielders

As I said I need 4 for each team (including the AM), making a total of 8. That's a lot of players. It's also one of the easiest roles to fill as there are so many good young midfielders in the game. And I remember a lot of them, so don't need to scout too hard. With this, I set some minimum attributes for pace, teamwork, passing, etc and scan through the list looking for names I recognise.

I'll try to get players with low shooting and high teamwork if I can get them. And I often train them as BBMs to build up their Stamina. The target attribute is Pace until its up to 15 or 16. By that point I often switch to Creativity. Most players have trained as BBMs so are more defensive than they might have been. I don't mind that, I generally like well rounded players who will help us dominate the midfield, but at some point in the training I will switch to Creativity to balance them out..

As I said above, I decided to keep Callum McGregor, O'Riley and Hatate for season 1. Well Chelsea ruined that plan by deciding O'Riley was their solution to having bought too many players. 


I could have accepted and cancelled later, but £32.5M was a lot and would let me bring in two midfielders who would end up better than him, so I sold him.

That left me with two experienced players (one for each team) and meant I was looking for at least 6 more midfielders. I went for most of the ones I used at Newcastle, but couldn't afford them all, so had to lower my sights to some who are just very good instead of world class. Still going to make pretty good players though. 

I signed Ouedraogo who is truly is the best one wonderkids in the game. I tried for Doue, but couldn't afford him. I did get Darvich and Sertdemir who are very close to those two. After that, I lowered my sights and went for Halseth-Nypan, Karabec, Kana and Lewis Bate, all of whom I've used before. This group will all be very good players, but will probably be replaced a couple of seasons in. 

An aside: one benefit of going for players at small clubs is you can unsettle them and get a good price, eg:



Instructing Each Player

When I decide to keep an existing player or when a new player joins the club, I go through the following with them: 

  • Their position - they may need retraining to fit into my system or to add flexibility to the team (eg back up other positions).
  • Their training target role - CD for central defenders, WB for IWBs (as they play like WBs in my system), BBMs for midfielder to build stamina (switching to other things once that's improved), AP for AMs, W for wingers, TF for strikers.
  • Their training target attribute - often pace for defenders and midfielders, crossing for wingers and a mixture of pace and aerial for strikers.
  • Mentoring - I try not to do this for too many players, but if they have any glaring issues I will find them a mentor.
  • Their contracts - I'll tie down any existing players I think may stay at the club more than a season or two and if they are important to team dynamics, I might increase their squad role as previously discussed. Obviously I do this for new players during negotiations.


I'm sure I've missed some stuff, but I think I better leave it here for now as this is one heck of a long installment.

I will just add that everything has been on day one, up until I start going through the positions and trying to sign people. I will do GKs, CDs, and maybe WBs & Ws before advancing the date. The game can't cope with too many things built up, so at some point I click that Next button.

Anyway, thanks for reading, especially if you made it all the way through this one!


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Made it all the way through and what a read. All this information in your own free time. Appreciate you 🙏

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12 hours ago, Scratch said:

Actually those of you reading carefully have probably died of old age by this point...

Nope, some of us oldies still have good attention spans 😉 a jolly good read this 👍 

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This is an invaluable guide to the game overall even if you're not looking to fully break the game as I've found myself ignoring the Dynamics of my teams, only to find some of them in a shocking state.

From the earlier instalments about coaches and such, I can say that my strikers have performed markedly better with scoring regularly reaching 50-60 rather than the 30-40 I was typically seeing.

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Posted (edited)


When doing a 1kc challenge. Do i need to start at save start. Or could i attempt it 5 years into a save with a regen? 

It would require more dedication, its alot of work just to get started. But it would give you extra time to prepare the rest of the team for the 1kc. 

Could also be a fun way to continue a park to prem challenge once you have achieved the initial goal.


Do you do anything to give a player maximum amount of game time? Lower training load, low press/slow tempo during games etc?

Edited by Haukr
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Posted (edited)

 I signed these players on free !!!! Mostly r wonder kids of England & Ireland!!!! 

But some stop improving after 1 season some not started!! Gyabi and Mikey moor are beast!!!! though Jimmy jay morgan scored more than Mikey moor in 3 seaso n I played before!!! I used mikey moor as striker and he reached 17 Aerial attribute!!!!


Total spend 32 millions on these players!!! 


Jorginho is best all though he has old but with very good attributes!!!!



Edited by P.Rahul
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1 hour ago, P.Rahul said:

 I signed these players on free !!!! Mostly r wonder kids of England & Ireland!!!! 

But some stop improving after 1 season some not started!! Gyabi and Mikey moor are beast!!!! though Jimmy jay morgan scored more than Mikey moor in 3 seaso n I played before!!! I used mikey moor as striker and he reached 17 Aerial attribute!!!!


Total spend 32 millions on these players!!! 


Jorginho is best all though he has old but with very good attributes!!!!



Yeah if you don't select England as a league, a lot of the young wonderkids start clubless. 

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9 hours ago, Haukr said:


When doing a 1kc challenge. Do i need to start at save start. Or could i attempt it 5 years into a save with a regen? 

It would require more dedication, its alot of work just to get started. But it would give you extra time to prepare the rest of the team for the 1kc. 

Could also be a fun way to continue a park to prem challenge once you have achieved the initial goal.


Do you do anything to give a player maximum amount of game time? Lower training load, low press/slow tempo during games etc?

No need to start at the start of the save. The rules are over here - the player can be real or regen. I almost always use a real player, but once did one with Tim Cahill's regen and I built the team up while waiting for him.

I'll cover the game time thing properly later, but low intensity training, sub off before 80% (often 85%) even if it's half time, etc

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1 hour ago, P.Rahul said:

 I signed these players on free !!!! Mostly r wonder kids of England & Ireland!!!! 

But some stop improving after 1 season some not started!! Gyabi and Mikey moor are beast!!!! though Jimmy jay morgan scored more than Mikey moor in 3 seaso n I played before!!! I used mikey moor as striker and he reached 17 Aerial attribute!!!!


Total spend 32 millions on these players!!! 


Jorginho is best all though he has old but with very good attributes!!!!

Yeah, like @MikeF said that happens if you don't select England. Which is why I always select England (see the Annoying Regens section of Part 2 - Choices When Starting The Save). I personally don't like it, but if you do that's cool! Mikey Moore is a top top player in the game. 

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1 hour ago, MikeF said:

Yeah if you don't select England as a league, a lot of the young wonderkids start clubless. 

I know !!!🤣 Is it cheating??? If yes than I will restart!!! 

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1 hour ago, P.Rahul said:

I know !!!🤣 Is it cheating??? If yes than I will restart!!! 

Certainly isn't cheating. 

It's your choice if it feels slightly tarnished, or not.

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9 hours ago, P.Rahul said:

I know !!!🤣 Is it cheating??? If yes than I will restart!!! 

I agree with Dai:

7 hours ago, Dai_ said:

Certainly isn't cheating. 

It's your choice if it feels slightly tarnished, or not.

Personally I don't like, feels a bit wrong to me. But also, like I explained in that section I linked to, once there are good young free agents in the game, the other Scottish teams will sign them up (if I don't), which makes the opposition slightly stronger.

The other thing is if you do this, don't try to hide it. That is when people get upset.

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On 29/03/2024 at 00:15, Scratch said:

Part 1 - Choosing The Club And Player

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it's always something I consider carefully before I start the save.


The Club

The club, and the league they are in, can have a massive impact on how the save goes.

Ultimately you want to be fielding a truly world class team against as weak an opposition as possible. The biggest factor in breaking the game is achieving an absolute dominance over the opposition in terms of skill level. 

Stronger Competitions

Lately I've been playing as Newcastle in the EPL. I have enough money and reputation to buy any wonderkid I like (and even established stars), so it's easy to put together a world class team. My striker will be playing at a high level, meaning he will ramp up and reach his full potential more quickly.

On the flip side, a young, raw striker might struggle to score in the EPL, which could slow things down a bit at the very start (high ratings = quicker development). And because we will be playing better opposition, he ultimately won't score as much (160 goals in the SPL might translate into 120 in the EPL for eg). 

Weaker Competitions

Last year I had an interesting save at Shamrock Rovers in Ireland. I was able to put together a very strong team (world class after four or five seasons). With the very low level of opposing clubs, we absolutely smashed teams week in, week out. The striker scored a LOT of goals.

But the competition being low level meant that it took a lot longer for players to ramp up, with them regularly hitting the "must play at a higher level to improve" cap. Not only did this make it harder, it severely reduced the fun level. And the transfer / wage budget at the start was pitiful, meaning it was harder to attract good players. 

The Happy Balance

The club I keep coming back to (and indeed for this save as well) is Celtic. It is the happy medium: A good budget, able to attract very good wonderkids, high enough level not to slow development, weak opposition meaning a lot of goals. etc. Basically the perfect combination. There are probably other leagues that are similar, but Scotland is the best for me. And within Scotland, Celtic seem the best club to use.

Don't let that stop you trying other club/leagues - find the ones that work for you, but do keep in mind the trade-offs of that choice. 


The Player

Equally, you have to choose right player to have a good chance of doing really well. Sometimes it's fun to use a random player that takes your fancy, but you will score more if you are more scientific about your choice. 


Of course you need to choose a young player for a long term goal scoring career. I like players who are 17 or 18 if I can get them. Any younger and you are more likely to run into the "needs to mature" message. I will use slightly older players (19 or 20) if they are clearly a better choice. 


You have to have an idea about your tactics before you can choose the right player. I always use tactics that rely on the striker being strong in the air (like a cheat code in FMM honestly), so I only look at players that will fit that. Specifically, I only look at players with a decent base for Aerial. 

I also look at a player's height. SI Games has said that height isn't used by the match engine, but I have an (unproven) theory that it may be used in working out how much/how often a player's Aerial attribute increases. There have been cases of shorter players getting to 20 Aerial, but I just feel it's more likely for a taller player to do it. There are a number of places to find out a player's height, but the easiest is Google. Anyway, that means no Endrick for me!

I also take a look at things like their Pace, Stamina etc. I don't worry too much about Shooting or Movement as these are fairly easy to train up. 

Hidden Attributes

I also go to the Personality button on the Personal screen to see their hidden attributes and scout them up in a test save (or even buy them).

I avoid anyone who is lazy or inconsistent or struggles in big matches or is injury prone. I am more likely to pick someone who is professional or works hard or is very rarely injured, etc. That said, most bad habits can be mentored out of them EXCEPT for struggles in big matches and injury prone, so I totally avoid those.


The hardest part is choosing someone with the right quality. You ideally want a player with low CA (current ability) and high PA (potential ability) as this means the player will get a lot of updates. A young player with lots of updates will always end up better than the established top strikers in the game (Haaland being maybe the only exception).

Of course you can't see CA and PA in the game, which makes it hard to choose players on this basis.  

For the first version of the current year's FMM, you can use the wonderkid list to find players with high PA. As different updates are released throughout the year, we get new database versions and the wonderkid list isn't always accurate anymore, so it may not always be a great choice later on.

Beyond that... We're about to get a little bit controversial:

  • The Editor is now free, so you can use it to see CA / PA as star values (always ignore the star values from staff in the game itself).
  • I created a scouting app for Android that lets you see the actual 0-200 values.

If you are doing a challenge here like a 1KC, then you should NOT use either of these during the challenge, but as far as I'm concerned (not all may agree), it's fine to scout around in test saves while you work out which player to use - as long as you don't use it on the actual save

Note: most young player have PA that generates slightly higher or lower each save, so what you see in the test save won't be the same in the real save - but it will give you an idea of what players you may want to use.

In case it helps, here are the top young strikers in the Winter Database version (you must make sure the Final Winter Update button is on when creating the save):

  Reveal hidden contents


I didn't show the CA/PA as some people don't like that, but that is all strikers 19 years or younger, with PA of 150 or above and a CA to PA gap of at least 40 (meaning at least 8 updates coming their way) - remembering of course that they could generate higher or lower in each save. 


Purchasing The Player

I always spin up a test save to see which strikers I can get at the club of my choice. It's no good choosing a striker that won't come to your club or that you can't afford, so I check out who I can get in advance of creating the actual save. Most of the time I will be looking for strikers that will come to the club I decided to use, but occasionally I will change club to get the player I want.


My Club For This Save 

I chose Celtic for the reasons given above. Also, I want to see how close I can get to 200 goals, so it makes sense to use the same club I was using for the original save where I achieved that. 

I was slightly tempted to use Inter so I could use Francesco Pio Esposito, the younger brother of Sebastiano, one of my favourite goal scorers from a few years back. He's on loan and can't be bought, so to use him you have to play as Inter and recall him. 

But I resisted that urge and went with Celtic.


My Striker For This Save

I spent a long time looking at Omorodion:



He didn't make the list I posted above because he has a CA to PA gap of 37, but he is perhaps the best choice. He has a fantastic base with those 15s for Aerial, Pace, Movement and Shooting. With 7 upgrades to come (on average), he's going to be hitting some 20s there alright. 

He would come to Celtic: 


And he would rip up the SPL from day one... Actually I'm a bit confused why I didn't go with him! 😀


I also looked at Rory Wilson:



He's actually quite good PA wise and has a lot more updates coming to him than Omorodion would. I liked that he was Scottish, but didn't like:

  • The Chilled description. Poor Judgement is fine, that will disappear as his Decisions attribute improves, but Chilled is harder to fix;
  • That he is only 181cm tall - that's okay, but I'd much prefer someone taller;
  • That he was a Rangers junior player - it didn't feel right to bring him to Celtic. 

I took a look at Emre Tezgel too, but I've used him before and decided not to revisit old ground this time around (and he is only 182cm).


I looked at a few others, but the one that I settled one was Nelson Weiper:



He is ultimately not as good as Omorodion in terms of PA, but he's still decent (high 4 stars) and he comes in with much lower CA, so will develop much more quickly. He's tall, and with 14 Aerial already, he should hit 20 without any worries.

Perhaps the best part is that hidden attribute list: Professional, Determined, Consistent... What more could I want? Well Hard Working would have been nice, but we can work on that. And Loyal players are always good to have. 

The other thing, which could be curse for some, but which I'll count as a blessing, is that he is German... That means he will never play an international game (as Germany uses greyed out players due to licensing issues). The negative is that I don't have the chance to manage manage him at ITN level and milk the ITN goals by setting up friendlies against weak nations, but I hate managing ITN teams and am quite happy to skip that. The benefit is that he is going to spend every ITN break staying at home relaxing and will be more refreshed for Celtic. That is actually quite good as players seem to get worn out over the course of a season.

My only worry with that is that his second nationality is Albanian, so they could call him up. 🤞 they don't...


And that's where I will leave it for today. Note, I haven't even started the actual save at this point, it's all just been planning which team and player to use, which will give me the best chance to really break the game.

Next update, I'll start the save and get into the Day 1 activities.


Any other league recommendations other than SPL?

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