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4-1-4-1 The Composer

This FM 2021 tactic is designed around the RPM; he is the hub that makes the team tick. Won the treble with Spurs scoring over 100 goals.

By on Nov 17, 2020   64439 views   13 comments
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Downloads: 7022 / Size: 44.0 kB / Added: 2020-11-17
Football Manager 2021 Tactics - 4-1-4-1 The Composer

The Idea

In FM21 it is more important than ever to have a clear plan of how you want your team to play, this tactic was built to get the most out of the roaming playmaker who was Lo Celso backed up by Harry Winks. The idea wasn't to hog the ball for the sake of it, I wanted short and quick intricate passages of play to unsettle the opponent.

The 4-1-4-1 formation is a humble yet versatile system with teams able to morph into different shapes in attack and defence. The 4-1-4-1 was developed from the classic 442 formation, it solved the problem of space between the midfielder and defence. The DM would act as a single pivot helping to link the play whilst covering the space between the lines, he also allows the wingers and fullbacks to be more adventurous aiding the attacking phase.

The FM21 Tactic

In order to get the best results and performances from the roaming playmaker, the roles around him are key. To ensure defensive solidity I used an anchor as the pivot the was tasked with sitting in front of the back four offering protection thus allowing the RPM to focus more attacking. The ball-winning midfielder was alongside him and he was there to protect the RPM, he would press aggressively and once winning the ball he would distribute it to the RPM.

With the ball, the team played fairly narrow, I wanted the team to be compact offering plenty of options for the man on the ball. But also to allow the team to be close together if the ball was lost. Although narrow the team would focus play to the wings encouraging overloads and playing in the half-spaces.

In transition the team doesn't counter press or regroup they hold the lines man marking the passing options whilst one player presses the ball carrier. Once the ball is turned over usually by an opponents error the team looks to ruthlessly exploit the gaps by countering immediately. To help advance the ball up the pitch the RPM drops deep to collect the ball from the keeper forming a double pivot.

Without the ball the team looks to use a smart press covering the passing lanes to limit the options of the ball carrier to either going back to the keeper or to go long. To help with the press a high line and high line of engagement are used and to prevent needless fouls I have told the players to stay on feet. Defensive width was fluid some games I would go narrow depending on the opponents same as standard but mainly I tried to force the opposition into central traffic.

During games I would tinker with these instructions such sometimes going cautious away from home against big sides like Liverpool, or when killing the game off to maintain the lead. I used RDF's OI'S.

Video Showcase

The video below showcases the tactic in action.

The Results

Winning every cup competition was fantastic and coming within a minute of the title was heartbreaking but overall I was very happy with the results.

Direct Download Steam Workshop
Downloads: 7022 / Size: 44.0 kB / Added: 2020-11-17
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Discussion: 4-1-4-1 The Composer

13 comments have been posted so far.

  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @kembobaby - If you want to switch the positions feel free but it wasn’t an issue for me. You can retrain him to a different position, i usually played as a cm in my rotated team. And no I don’t alternate with any other formation.
  • kembobaby's avatar
    This looks really interesting and I'm eager to test it. Just started a Spurs save. But a few things.
    1. Wouldn't it be more natural if Lo Celso and Ndombele changed positions?
    2. Can you utilize Dele Alli at all with this tactic?
    3. Dou you never alternate with a different tactic? Let's say 4-2-3-1?
  • andreadox's avatar
    How is it going with this tactic? i've tried with milan but it doesn't impress me. maybe i just need to give it more time.
    any updates?
  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @TheTurkey - You can find them in his Klopp video.
  • TheTurkey's avatar
    When you say you used RDF's OI's, what are these?

    Only used this tactic for 1 game so far but I got shit on at home.
  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @dryikk - Thanks and your welcome, hope you see similar results.
  • dryikk's avatar
    Am with Tottenham too and was having lots of trouble to play them properly. I was going for a 4-3-3 (2 AMRL) and direct pass and couldn't get them to attack like they should, underachieved a lot. I can see your thinking and thanks for sharing. Will try it now
  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @P4TR - Give it a try let me know how you get on.
  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @Stam - Thanks man, I try :}
  • Boroboy116's avatar
    @HurkaDurka69 - He did great, chipped in with some goals too, he had the 13 assists in the league. Both had average ratings over 7.
  • P4TR's avatar
    this would work class with Leeds, rodrigo up top, Philips in front of the defense, raphina and harrison/costa as inverted wingers, just perfect
  • Stam's avatar
    Amazing effort, as always! :yes:
  • HurkaDurk69's avatar
    Excited to try this out, how did the RPM do interms of Key passes, chance creation, average rating?

    Also, how did the Anchor and BWM do in terms of average rating since they were never high for me in that departement last year?
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