Football Manager 2017 : Guide to Tactics and Strategy

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A good knowledge of the basic tools for the management and selection of tactics to be adopted on the field is absolutely fundamental in Football Manager: the proposed screens, in fact, are not so intuitive for less experienced players and it is easy to get lost among all the hundreds of possible combinations. The best way to understand how to act before and after the game is of course to play, experiment and take risks, but we believe that a basic guide can be useful to clarify those concepts that, in our opinion, can absolutely not be ignored. We are talking, specifically, about mentality, team structure and the instruction panel: useful and essential tools to organize a perfect team. Ready to propose your idea of football to the world? Let's get started.

Flexible, counterattack, everything for everything... What are the chances?

In the bar on the left side of the screen there is a specific item dedicated to tactics, selecting it you will immediately find a large screen full of parameters to adjust and items to select. Don't get scared and try to go step by step, taking your time to decide how to act and which philosophy to adopt. This is the perfect place to adjust the formation, choose the captain (and deputy), assign individual instructions on opponents, manage kicks placed and more. From this panel you can also choose the basic mentality of your team from the following options:

- Containment

- Defensive

- Counterattack

- Standard

- Control

- Offensive

- Everything for Everything

It's not a final choice, you can always change things in the race by adapting to the needs of the case (if you're winning 1-0 with a few minutes to go, for example, closing in on defense might be a great idea). There are coaches who go ahead with their ideas regardless of their opponents (those of the top clubs usually) and coaches who are forced to adapt by focusing on a more offensive or defensive approach. The choice is yours, of course, but from experience we can say that adapting is usually the best strategy. Always analyze your opponent's strengths and weaknesses and choose your tactics accordingly, trying to get the best out of every single man at your disposal. You will be very wrong at the beginning, but in time you will understand the various mechanisms and take a lot of tasty revenge...

In addition to the mentality, the tactical voice allows us to adjust the disposition of our team on the field by choosing from a good number of options (unchanged over the last few years). We are talking in particular about:

- Very structured

- Structured

- Flexible

- Fluid

- Very fluid

In this case you're not going to influence your team's approach to the game, but the margin of freedom left to the players. It is clear that in a team with "very fluid" there will be less order on the field, but your men will be more inclined to sacrifice and will give much less points of reference to the opponents. A very structured approach, on the contrary, will guarantee you a practically total order but will make you quite predictable... Generally the best choice is the intermediate one (flexible or structured), but it all depends on the way you make the team play.

Total control

Also in this new chapter of the series the developers propose an "instructions" panel to use before and during the race, a rich and functional screen on which you'll have to spend a long, long time. Thanks to it, in fact, you'll be able to adjust virtually all the main aspects of your team's game, managing the scoring and pressing, choosing the band to bet on, slowing down the pace and more. Also in this case we can't tell you which is the best combination since everything depends on the players on the field: if you have a good wing and the opponent's full-back is terrible obviously try to attack there, if you have deadly shooters from a distance increase the shots from outside and so on ... The important thing is to take a few minutes before the game to look at the observer's reports on the opponent, assess his weaknesses and adjust tactics accordingly.

Don't worry if the players don't always follow your instructions to the letter, it's a fairly normal thing that also happens in real football: the important thing is that overall the team does its own, avoiding dangerous skidding and inappropriate attitudes.

In the tactics screen you will then have the opportunity to manage the best even the kicks placed: if you follow the world of football you know the importance of inactive ball situations, so do not underestimate this component of the game. It is not necessary to spend hours and hours inventing crazy schemes, the important thing is that you take care of the selection of shooters, jumpers and other components related to angles and punishments. During the course of a season the percentage of inactive ball nets is generally very high, so make sure you also have an adequate defense and remember to take care of it in training.

As for the instructions on the opponent, in conclusion, we can only advise you to carefully consult the observer's report: only then you will know which players to club and which not, which to press and which to double, which to mark assiduously and which not. Cancelling the best opposing players is often crucial to victory, so make sure you know the other team best.

Conclusion : let's pull the strings

This new Football Manager 2017 , like its predecessor, allows you to propose your football philosophy by trying it on the field. Manage all the tactical settings present is really complex and it takes a long time to get into the mechanism, we are aware of this, but we assure you that you can get great satisfaction with the right dedication.

In conclusion we want to give you one last piece of advice, perhaps the most important for those who play FM: don't be afraid to lose, to take risks, to try the crazy tactics. This game is great because it allows you to experiment with new schemes and situations, so don't feel limited and try everything that comes into your head!

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