Guide to Football Manager 2011 – Training
Training is crucial in improving and developing your team and players. Its used to help players reach their potential, maintain their current ability, develop specific attributes and even train players in new positions.
Schedules are the main part of training and are made up of 9 different training categories (aerobic, strength, tactics and so on). These different categories train different attributes, for example aerobic training includes acceleration, pace, and jumping. The intensity of training on each category is represented by the slider bar, on any custom or new training schedule you create you can change the level of focus on any training category by clicking the sliders to the right (more focus) or left (less focus). The bottom slider represents the overall workload of the training schedule, a medium workload may be best for the whole squad but some players are capable of and happy to train on higher workloads.
It’s ideal to create different schedules for different positions that focus on developing different attribute sets. For example a defender needs more focus on the defending, tactics and strength categories while a striker needs more focus on the ball control and shooting categories to train attributes that are more important for offensive players. You can create as many training schedules as you want and make schedules that are more appropriate to certain player types or even create individual schedules specifically tailored to just one player.
Youth, part-time and full-time players need schedules relevant to their contract type (youth players can only train on youth schedules and so on). Full-time and part-time training can be accessed on the first team screen while youth training needs to be accessed through the youth team.
What attributes do each category train
Strength – Work Rate, Natural Fitness, Stamina, Strength
Aerobicc – Acceleration, Agility, Balance, Jumping, Pace
GK Shot Stopping – One On Ones, Reflexes, Composure, Concentration
GK Handling – Aerial Ability, Handling, Kicking, Throwing
Tactics – Anticipation, Decisions, Off The Ball, Positioning, Teamwork
Ball Control – Dribbling, First Touch, Heading, Technique, Flair
Defending – Marking, Tackling, Concentration
Attacking – Crossing, Passing, Creativity
Shooting – Finishing, Long Shots, Composure
Quality of training - coaches, stars and facilities
Various factors determine how well your players train such as the ability of your coaches, their workload and the quality of your training facilities. Naturally better facilities mean better training and faster development. Facilities also determine what options a player has for individual training focus, higher quality facilities will allow you to individually train more attributes such as positioning and off the ball. A coaches training ability in a specific training category is shown by a star rating, this rating is affected by coaching attributes, determination, discipline and motivating and also by the number of schedules that the coach is assigned to. I recommend using the FM Coach Calculator if you want to easily find a coaches star rating.
There are 3 other areas of training that can be useful in improving players abilities.
Individual training focus - gets the player working on improving a specific attribute, some individual attributes are only available for clubs with better quality training facilities. An example of the effectiveness of this training is demonstrated by a newgen player Jiri Langer, he developed strength by 12 points in only 5 years using individual training focus. Individual focus is most effective on younger players who still have much potential to fulfill.
Position training - can train a player to learn a new position, the speed at which a player learns his new position is based on his hidden attribute versatility and how frequently the player plays in that position. A player can eventually become a natural in that position after 2-5 years so long as he is played regularly in that position. An example is Davide Petrucci who in my Sunderland game became a natural striker after 3 years of positional training and regular first team football in that position.
Preferred move training - can teach a player to regularly perform specific moves in a game to improve his effectiveness, for example you may have a winger who has great pace and is great at dribbling, teaching him the preferred move runs with ball down left would see him utilize this skill more often and benefit his game. It’s important to only teach a player a move that is relevant to his position and ability. To get a player to learn a preferred move you need to suggest it in a player interaction. Whether a player accepts your suggestion depends on a combination of your reputation as a manager, the personality of the player and how much a new move will improve the players game.
Match preparation allows you to focus on improving your teams familiarity levels with your tactics and also put special focus on a specific area of your teams play. A useful article that also explains match preparation in detail can be found on the True Football Manager Blog.
You can choose up to 3 different tactics for your team to become more familiar with, your team can become more familiar with different aspects of your tactics from formation to passing style and level of creative freedom, the best possible familiarity level being fluid. The number of tactics you have selected in match prep will affect how quickly the players learn them, with 3 tactics to focus on it will take longer for your team to become familiar with them than it would with just 1.
You can also change the amount of work that is put into improving tactic familiarity by changing the workload, a higher workload will result in your teams understanding of your tactics becoming fluid much quicker but remember that a higher workload in match preparation will also take from the work being put into scheduled training. I recommend using a high or very high workload in match prep until your team becomes fluid with your tactics, then switch to a very low workload.
Special Focus Area
The special focus area allows you to improve one area of your teams play for each match, the attacking and defending focus areas will temporarily raise certain related attributes during a match. The team blend special focus will improve squad gelling, team blend is particularly useful in improving the understanding between your players if you’ve have signed a lot of new player in a short space of time. I recommend using the team blend special focus area until your players are blending well together or better then switching to one of the other special focus areas. You can see how well your team is blending in your assistants team-talk feedback.
A players overall training workload is split between scheduled training, match preparation and the other training areas mentioned above. Scheduled training will take up 100% of a players training workload if there is no match preparation or other training being used, this percentage will decrease depending on how much other training areas are being used. Individual focus, position and preferred move training each take up 10% of the overall training workload if they are being utilized. Match preparation can take up 0 – 50% of the overall training workload depending on much focus is being put on it. It’s worth being aware of how other training areas take from the amount of scheduled training and affect normal attribute development.
Player training overview
You can gain an overview of all areas of a players training by looking at the training section of his profile. You can see all parts of training he’s involved in as well as track his attribute development and training levels for the past year.
Professionalism and workload
Professionalism is a hidden personality attribute that determines how high a workload a player will be happy with on a training schedule, the higher the workload the harder a players trains and better improves. A player with professionalism of 10 or higher will be happy with a very heavy schedule (one click from heavy to very heavy only), players with a lower professionalism will be unhappy with an intense schedule and be less effective and prone to injury, keep them on a medium intensity training schedule.
- Match preparation workload affects the scheduled training workload, its recommended that you reduce your match preparation focus to “very low” when your team has become fluid in your tactics.
- Determination, level of discipline and motivating contribute to a coaches training ability.
- Players can be trained to become naturals in new positions so long as they are played regularly in that position in addition to their new position training.
- Individual focus training can lead to dramatic increases in the selected attribute. Some attributes for individual training focus are only available with better quality facilities.
- Professionalism (hidden attribute) determines how high a workload in scheduled training a player will be happy with. Professional players (10 or higher) will be happy on a very high scheduled training workload.