Football Manager 2010

Because - seriously - this game shouldn’t be being discussed in a thread about CM2010.

This sounds like you have forgotten to tweak the corner settings. Always have two of your players (left and right back are the default choice, so if your left back is taking corners you only have 1) staying back during corners.

The default corner approach is to place the player with best jumping at the near or far post, and then directing the ball there. There is also an exploit where the AI has great difficulty defending against a player with high long shots exploiting lurking outside the box.

That is what all the detailed tactical options are for. Set them to play as Inside forward and tweak the settings. Also, consider playing in another formation. Perhaps what you really want is an attacking midfielder playing as a deep forward.

Re: Team Talks:
I always use a full and half-time team talks, pretty much as described. It’s important to consider what type of player you’re talking to, though - you can generally be more demanding of your star/veteran players (expect better), whereas youngsters should often be treated more carefully (no pressure). The personality of the players has a lot to say too, though - it can be useful to track the response of players a little just to get an idea of which players react favorably/adversly to which type of attitude.

Generally, at half time, I always go with “Don’t let your performance drop” if we’re ahead, “I expect more” if we’re behind or the performance is poor. Pre-match, it is important to single out any complacent players and tell them you expect a performance. In general - if complacency is a problem, I always “Expect a Win”. I always tweak a bit on individuals, though.

Tutoring is usually all about improving the (hidden) mental stats and player moves. You get the best results if the players are compatible in character. You want to tutor with players with good mental characteristics - IMO, the most important here are Professionalism (hidden - but you can see if the player has high professionalism under his personality) and Determination. You don’t want to tutor with players that do not possess these key attributes.

How do you guys deal with players getting sent off? Mascherano is a prime culprit in my team although stepping in if you use your Assistant Manager’s instructions on the opposition to scale back the number of players that you use hard tackling against certainly reduces the number of cards.

In my first game I more or less ignored players getting sent off and eventually ended up with a couple of players having a “slt” Rating over the lack of discipline at the club.

Since then I’ve started to crack down. I now issue a warning to any player getting a straight red and check back the match report in cases where two yellows were issued. If it was a card happy ref (happens) then I might let them off. On the second Red of the season I then start to fine them wages.

If you are picking up a lot of bookings, check the instructions you’ve issued for default tackling and especially check the Opposition instructions if you’ve let the AM do them, depending on their preferences some of then stick hard tackling on pretty much every player which is definitely a recipe for your more “committed” playesr to get themselves regularly sent off or suspended for yellow cards.

I NEVER set hard tackling on forwards. I reserve it for opposition players who’re playing nervously, [midfield] players I want to try and limit as much as possible and, dare I admit it? Players who’re carrying injuries.

Regarding Corners, you want your best corner taker from the stats taking them, I set a right footed player to take the left corner and a left footed player to take the right and normally have them aim for the Far post.

Find your tallest player with the best heading ability normally a central defender and set their regular position to “attack the far post”. I’ve got a defender that everyone else sells (Sotiris Kyrgiakos) in my team who regularly scores 10-15 goals a season from corners. And by setting his position to attack the far post I know that I always want, in this case, my best header of the ball in the right central defender spot.

I rarely use hard tackling unless the player has a very good tackling rating for his level and even then it is a recipe for getting lots of yellow cards. I never have more than one or two players using it.

I always issue a warning to any player who gets two yellow cards in a match, and fine 1 weeks wages for a direct red. I crack down on violent behavior with a 2 weeks fine (but I generally don’t buy players who are that undisciplined). Playing like that, I rarely have trouble with discipline (but it is important to be consistent).

I’ve been absorbed with my own FM2010 campaign for the past couple weeks. Decided to start in Scotland for the hell of it, picked Annan, who were predicted for a low-ranked finish in the lowest league. I’m trying to play (mostly) according to LLM rules.

First year I finished mid-table, second I won promotion to the Second Division. I just finished my first year in Second Division in fourth place, having lost in the first round of the promotion playoffs to the relegee from the First Division on penalty kicks. Which is just as well, my team isn’t ready for First Division play. Another year of consolidating and we might be there.

This is my first extended 2010 game, having previously only mucked about with CM 01/02. I’m enjoying the heck out of it, now that I’ve taken the time to wrap my head around things more than I had before.

They just announced some of the features for FM2011 too, going to be interesting… should I copy the press release?

The press release is kinda of bad “omgz…we totally revolutionized this feature…again” but in the middle of all that there’s this:

“dynamic league reputation” FUCK YES!

At last! I was under the impression that club reputation was kind of fixed as long as you were in a league structure with a decent rep. I.e if Csl takes Telford into the premiership and does well then the club rep will start to improve to that level over time but if he’d taken Stavanger FC to the heady heights of winning the champion’s league he’d still be stuck with his players getting upset because low level English, Spanish or Italian clubs were making bids that were turned down.

Need to read up on the features as I’d really like to be able to hand off training to my backroom and see some improved feedback around that area. My players are rarely 100% condition but I don’t know if it’s because I’m still working them a bit too hard in training or I’ve dialled it down a bit too much.

And press conferences can die in a fire in their current implementation.

You probably already do this, but subbing key players at 75% or 80% condition is often the only real way to maintain 100% for any length of time. Even then it’s very difficult to keep it going. As long as they’re 96%+ it’s not too big of an issue.

Ensuring your fitness coaches are five star is key too, though the actual mechanics of training tend toward being irritatingly byzantine. I tend to research proven effective routines from the internet and tweak them, since I find crafting my own desperately tedious.

I do, if a player finishes a match at 60% condition then I don’t expect him to bounce back to 100% for the match in three days time. But I try to maintain two “class” players and a kiddie for each position as my squad and it’s rare to see the unselected player at 100% condition.

So both players come out of pre-seas “match fit”. I play Mascherano at DM and leave Lucas on the bench, unselected for a reserve team. Come the next match Mascherano is at 80% condition and Lucas will probably only be around 92-95% but sometimes will be 99-100% and “in superb condition” which ideally is what I want. In FM/CM of old 95% condition was enough for me to drop a player to the bench so it might just be a state of mind rather than a real concern but it’s rare for me to get players “in superb condition” and I’m just not entirely sure what, if anything, I’m doing wrong. Should I rest my first team from training before a match perhaps and be more proactive with my potential subs to get their pre-match condition up or is that extra few percent not really worth bothering about?

It’s not as if I’m especially struggling to win things at the moment but it is one of those areas that I still don’t feel I’ve really got a handle on.

[edit] I guess another way of putting it is that if I’ve got a match fit player who’s just finished playing a game, I’d expect his condition to dip after a game as he’s run himself ragged but on a normal training routine to then recover to 99-100% condition, plateau at level for an amount of time and then fall away to (plucking a figure out of my arse) 90% or so if he wasn’t being picked. I don’t see that happening very often and most players hover around the 90-95% mark which suggests to me that either my training is too much so they’re always a bit knackered or it’s not intensive enough so they’re never hitting peak condition.

When I first started I got a lot of injuries too which I took to mean that they were training too hard so lowered the overall sliders down a few notches which definitely improved the injury rate but not their overall condition so is finding that sweet spot just a case of trial an error, knock it down a few notches again and see what happens over a week or two maybe?

As long as your players are above 90% for a match, they’ll be fine. My rule of thumb is that I should be able to play a full game without any of my players dipping below 65% fitness, and I tend to find that 90+% is where they have to be in order to have a chance of playing a full match with that requirement.

If a player cannot do this consistently, he really does not belong on a top level team. All the real-life good players you will find in the game should have no trouble with this, barring injuries. For new players, you want to look to their Stamina (how durable they are during a match) and Natural Fitness (how well they recover) attributes. Needless to say, both should be high. Even in lower leagues, I will never sign a player with single digits in either of these two attributes.

Under normal circumstances (where your reserves get some match training), you will never see 100% fitness except at the start of a season. Three days is more than enough for a top player like Mascherano to recover (barring injury). If you are having trouble with this, you may be training your players too hard.

But you probably also are reading the fitness % the wrong way. It is more of a “Readiness” thing. Rest your players for a few days (without reserve matches), and you will find them at 100% fitness quickly. Of course, they will then be lacking match fitness, which is usually much worse.

I may have reached the point where I don’t completely suck at this game, and it came about pretty much by accident.

As I mentioned in the other thread, I started off with Watford: no money, no good players except for loans, no hope. Average youngsters. Strangely high expectations.

My best players were three loanees. Tom Cleverley (AMC), a youngster from Man Utd. Henri Lansbury (AMRLC), a youngster from Arsenal. Heidar Helguson, a striker from fellow Championship side Q.P.R. Only Jay DeMerit, the USA player, was a genuine Watford player and he was my captain and the rock in defence. Scott Loach, the young England keeper, provided the other bit of quality in my side.

Helguson either started the season injured or got injured during pre-season, I can’t remember. Lansbury started the season injured. Cleverley was my top goalscorer in preseason and a dominant figure, but then he got a serious injury and I had to cancel his loan contract. As you can imagine, this left me with very little quality at all.

My initial plan was to replicate Holland’s WC successes, with two physical DMs and a fluid attack of one striker and a pair of wingers/inside forwards, with a central midfield maestro. It didn’t work. Not least because I didn’t have the players for it, but because I really wasn’t playing to the strengths of the squad. I bought a very cheap youngster who’d starred in some England age group game, Raymond Putterrill - a left winger - and spent far too long trying to convince myself he could be a first team player straight off the bat. I did buy a more sensible option, a cheap but experienced defensive midfielder called Mathieu Boots from a Dutch side. At 34, he wasn’t going to be playing the whole season but I was eyeing up the chance to convert one of my spare defenders into a DM (he had the stats for it and was fairly comfortable in the role) so he’d do the trick.

Predictably enough I started badly and it got worse. Despite my last preseason game being a win over a full-strength Spurs side, Cleverley’s injury screwed me out of most of my attacking talent. I started panicking and never settled on an attacking lineup, although my defence rarely changed and were often my top performers. I tried turning an exciting youngster, Will Buckley, from a winger to an inside forward to a trequartista which worked decently but not quite well enough. The fans quickly got pissed off with me and things came to a head before a match against the runaway league leaders, West Bromwich Albion. I just couldn’t see a way past my problems. The board started making threatening noises and the papers reported the WBA game as being crucial to my hopes of staying in the job.


Predictably, we got smashed. The reaction wasn’t great, morale was down, and more rumours abounded. Then my game crashed. Reloading, it was back to pre-WBA. Sighing, I went through the whole process again… and this time won the game! I couldn’t believe my luck. That win gave me some breathing space, and Helguson’s return saw him go on a scoring spree. I finally settled on a formation - a 4-5-1 which was more of a 4-3-3, with 1 DMC, 2 MCs, and two attacking AMs acting as wingers, with Helguson as the lone striker. My wingers were Buckley on the right and Don Cowie on the left. Cowie was one I’d basically ignored up till now but he proved his worth instantly, scoring goals and setting them up. Buckley had previously shown an inability to score but was now banging them in on dangerous runs from his wing into the box. Helguson couldn’t miss. Ross Jenkins, a youngster in midfield, was turning into an absolute star, outshining Lansbury. Boots provided the glue in the DMC position, and my side’s tactics of Control and short passing meant that I could break down the most stubborn of sides.

Even so, a few losses meant that the fans and board were grumbling again. A few games later, I went on a winning spree. First I was unbeaten for a few matches, then we won four in a row, followed by a couple of draws. We went from flirting with relegation to being 9th in the league.

Then disaster struck - Helguson got injured, Buckley got injured, Cowie got injured, DeMerit got injured, Jenkins got injured. The core of my team just fell apart. Predictably, results suffered and I was forced to rely on youngsters again. Right now, I’m scrapping for results and trying to not drop too many points while waiting for the return of my better players. Cowie, DeMerit, and Jenkins are back, but Jenkins is agitating for a move to Sunderland and given that he’s unhappy and we have no money, I’ve slapped a £2.5m pricetag on him and am hoping they’ll cough up. If I can just avoid losses till Helguson’s fit again, then everything will be fine.

I hope.

Anyway, this is a great game and it’s amazing how it stirs the emotions. Conceding a last-minute goal is a kick in the teeth, injuries make you despair, and unexpected wins bring a big smile to my face. Seeing youngsters like Will Hoskins, my very inexperienced striker, come on and score wonder goals are moments you don’t forget for a long time.

Football, bloody hell.

I’m gearing up for my first “proper” game after a good few seasons with Liverpool getting to know the ropes. Is taking my shortlist of promising kids with me cheating?

Crewe is likely to be my destination as my traditional CM secondclub and I’m under no illusions that it’ll be the easy ride of old.

My aim is to restore the fine Crewe tradition of churning out the next generation of English premiership players. I haven’t even looked at Crewe on this version so I’ve no idea what state they’re in.

I dunno if the game has a hardcoded progression path for kids - you might find they suck on a reload. The one thing to bear in mind is the important of the mental skills like anticipation.

My players are fit and firing again, but there’s been some changes. Will Hoskins has proven himself as a nippy goal poacher and has supplanted Helguson for now. Jenkins went to Liverpool for £2m - a good deal all round and we need the money. I got an excellent young centreback called Shane Lowry, a 20 year, on loan from Aston Villa for peanuts, and he’s already one of my best players.

Happily people are stepping up to the plate in my weaker positions (i.e. striker and central midfield). It’s going well!

For existing talents, they usually do (though since no one quite knows how a 16-18 year old is going to develop 10 years ahead of time, there can be a fairly large variation depending on the random rolls).

And no - why should it be cheating? Play the game the way you enjoy it.

I dunno if the game has a hardcoded progression path for kids - you might find they suck on a reload. The one thing to bear in mind is the important of the mental skills like anticipation.

It’s not hardcoded in so far as Fabian Delph might be brilliant in this save but would suck in the next, but with the right tuition, training and experience he might be even more brilliant. I think with one of the potential ratings certain attributes are randomised so you might get a kiddie with 20 penalty taking one save and 1 the next but “core” attributes will be more or less constant. i.e. regardless of the save Fabian Delph should always be an awesome future midfielder.

Regens are completely random though.

So I picked up Crewe. The squad is all on terrible morale having been relegated to league 2 and off the back off managing liverpool (different save though) I’m still half tempted to sell everyone for being rubbish. The board naturally want immediate promotion and have given me the princely sum of £20,000 with which to strengthen my squad.

Now the immediate problem I’ve got is that I don’t really know what “Decent” players for this level look like and the majority of friendlies were against top level Championship and Premiership teams who naturally pummelled me. I’ve absolutely no idea yet whether my rejigged 4-4-2 tactic is to blame or my players are just crap. I’ve one friendly left and the seasons starts. I don’t really want to play a 4-4-2, I’m lacking wingers but equally don’t have the squad for my preferred 4-1-2-1-2. Perhaps a 4-3-3 needs investigation.

4-3-3 it is, well a 4-1-2-3. Chronically short on decent left/right backs but my modified 4-4-2 just ended up with us getting pummelled. I immediately just dipped straight into the Liverpool team and secured Pacheco (should have gone for de le valle really) and Shearing on loan to prop up my midfield and front line.

I took an existing 4-3-3 that I’d been tinkering with for Liverpool and modified it to be more suitable for a League 3 team so gone with the short passing in favour of a more direct approach and the two wide strikers I’ve tried to tweak to be more forward wingers than out and out strikers, but the bulk of the width comes from the full backs who’re struggling at that level to run up and down the pitch all match but can’t argue with the results. After a pre-season trying a 4-4-2 and getting pummelled by everyone the switch to a 4-3-3 has paid immediate dividends.

I do have a players claiming I’ve victimised him but I’ve no idea for what. It’s possible I guffed a team talk and didn’t praise him enough, but I don’t think so. COmpared to Liverpool these are right temperamental lot. NOne of the buggers want to play for me at the moment and I guess I need to treat them with kid gloves.

I finished the season in 14th, after a late run of poor results.

Managed to get Watford out of their financial hole, though, by getting rid of a few of their big spenders who weren’t doing it for me. Got 3 fine players on loan from Premiership sides - 12 months, 0% of wages! - and bought a couple of really handy youngsters, especially strikers. The result being that after 10 matches of the new season, having gone from a favoured 4-5-1 to a very aggressive 4-4-2, Watford are top with 24 points, having scored 26 goals and conceded 10.

Life is good and I have players for each position, with the average age of the squad being in the early twenties.

So after playing this full-time since World of Tanks went down, I am ready to throttle my chairman. Somehow, as Rotherham, though I was stumbling a lot and barely avoiding relegation in my second season (suffice it to say I was not popular with my squad), I managed to snag an excellent youth prospect - Jamie Spencer, AM/R/ST. By the time he was 19 he was worth almost a million pounds and scored 23 goals in 37 appearances. He single-handedly took our team almost to promotion to the Coca-Cola League 1 and then my chairman sold him!

I don’t know who Tony Stewart is in real life but, God Almighty, I was ready to take a butcher’s knife to his eyes.

The worst part? The WORST part?

Blackpool comes in at 800,000. Sheffield one-ups them to 975,000. Arsenal offers an astounding 1,200,000 pounds!

What does Tony Stewart do? He sells him to Blackpool. And of that 800,000, what does my transfer budget see? 220,000. My weekly pay went up by, maybe 2,000 pounds.

I wish I could call a press conference and rip him a new one. I had the kid signed and sealed for another year. My scouts were telling me he’d be a Premier regular, and he was still getting better. I want to resign in protest. I want the game to know that somehow, I, as a manager, will commit homicide over this.