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The Enigma, That Is, Football Manager.

Overthinking Can Never Be Productive.
Started on 26 July 2018 by SirArsene1991
Latest Reply on 4 November 2018 by SirArsene1991
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SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited

My name is Jack.

I have been playing FM ever since you could get It for Xbox 360 and Marcelo was at Fluminese before joining Real Madrid.

My past achievements include winning the league with Sunderland and the Champions League with Norwich.

Since 2013 I sadly lost my passion for FM, returning last year when I purchased FM18.
SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited
The Beautiful Game

So this is not so much of a story in that on my next post you will expect to see a massive..

This is purely a diary entry almost, but at the same time raising, what I believe, to be a valid enquiry and head scratcher relating to our beloved game in Football Manager.

So I purchased FM18 last year now and have not looked back since. After returning to the legendary game after a 5 year absence, a lot has changed. It certainly seems more difficult, but then again that word could be mistaken for realistic...

It is without a shadow of a doubt, once again, my favourite game, however, the one true dilemma I always face is what team to manage

So clearly looking at other peoples fantastic stories, there is clearly a divide with managers in terms of whether they decide to start with a team in which they support (personal reasons) or they might want to start a file with a team they where they see a potential challenge.
Career Options

So there are many different directions to go, with regards to picking a team to manage. If you are seeking a challenge, Salford City have been known to be an exciting team as they possess a squad far superior to the league in which they current reside.

So the only Pro with taking on Salford is the reward you get at the end. If you win the Premiership, The Champions League or even the FA Cup, you go down as being one of the greats in terms of FM.

Well I tend to overthink massively (which you will find when you read on) because I have played so many different FM's, I tend to over analyse the various pro's and con's of managing a specific team before taking over. For example, with Salford, the Cons outweigh the pro's. I personally do not have the patience to play every single game. I mean, when you think about it, you do play this game for a whole season potentially, and therefore you have more than enough time on your hands to achieve great things with Salford. However, do I possess the motivation to wait that long to play in the big time. Im not sure. My main gripe also is that you miss out the whole of this generation of players growth including the new young talent. By the time you get to the Premiership, it is going to be easy to obtain the best young Face Generated players with the biggest potential. My question is this, does this spoil the journey of FM? knowing you will only taste glory with a made up team?
SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited
You Wanna Play With The Big Boys?

Okay, that title sounds a little weirder than expected..

Basically this post is based on the complete opposite side of the FM spectrum. So on FM you can either start with a lower team and embrace the challenge, or you can take over a Top Division club, such as Chelsea, Man City etc.

I tend to find this more enjoyable personally because you are getting the feel of playing in the biggest competitions. All the Premier League matches and the glorious FA Cup. All those matches that you as football fans watch and experience, you can now re live the Excitement of all that yourself.

However, there are ofcourse some dilemmas with this option also, as otherwise I would not be here typing this at work, instead of doing my job which entails taking calls from the beloved general public....

So when starting with a Premiership club for instance, you pick either Spurs,Arsenal,Liverpool,Man City, Chelsea or United. Now when taking the helm at one of these clubs, you quality of the squad is already amazing so you know your going to be challenging for the title in the first season. You can pretty much guarantee you'll be able to attract the best players and young talent, however starting with any of the top 6 above, you will be competing with 5 other top teams which makes it a lot more enjoyable, adding a challenge of its believe it or not. But, the biggest question when starting as a bigger team is where does it stop?. What I mean by this is, if you start as Liverpool, how many seasons before you've won everything and you are bored. You have nothing else to achieve etc. Do you move abroad to another club? In that case, you need to start a Mourinho file also in that case based on going abroad from Chelsea to Inter, to Madrid.

Im intrigued to see how other managers make their decisions. Don't get me wrong, im completely aware that the people who do take the time to read this will think a completely mentalist who overthinks more than the average human does, when playing a game. But I am just trying to establish the best choice for myself. This is why there are so many different aspects which result in the final decision. Is it worth making a Manchester City file where you just keep winning? Think ahead, in advance as the file you create may well be on impulse. To create a successful save, it needs longevity, patience and enthusiasm. Judging by my previous stories, that clearly is what I a missing with my previous story's.
SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited
Are Foreign Leagues Pointless?

So when I am contemplating on what team to manage next, when I either lose the motivation to continue with a current save, or I just fail miserably, I naturally look to my next challenge.

Because of how may different teams I have managed, I either go back to a team I once was (Such as Rangers, who I am right now) or I try to discover a team I have never managed.

So some people can manage teams like Shamrock Rovers for example, how they can do that I will never know. I mean, I guess its exciting, the prospect of winning the Champions League. I personally would get bored of the league year by year.

This is why its imperative to take all these things into account. I once made a file with Genk. I was excited because they had churned out talent like Benteke & Kevin De Bruyne, hoping to seek European Glory. Now that sounds grand right? Well playing in that Division is not fun. I couldn't care less about that league, and on top of that, we must remember that there are far more league games than cup.
Our Beloved 4-4-2

So recently I created a file with West Ham. Because I prefer not to use the generic 4-2-3-1, I woke up one day and had the inspiration to replicate Leicester and Atletico's success using a 4-4-2 and not playing the style in which all teams aim for these days which is possession based fluid football.

This style frustrates me. Managers will understand me when I say how frustrating it is to concede a goal. Ofcourse, such is the way of life when discussing the beautiful game, however surely if you create a team with a deeper defensive line, a counter attack mentality, and a more structured and disciplined approach, you can get create a team similar to your Atletico's etc.

See, I absolutely love Atletico. Granted I am an Arsenal fan and therefore appreciate free flowing football, ofcourse I do, however sometimes you just need to grind out that win and when Leicester were on that run of 1-0 wins, not conceding also, I mean that was remarkable. It really was. I love Atleti also because you've got Reals infinite funds to buy a Galactico every year. Then you've got Barcelona who prior to Reals incredible dynasty they have created in Europe, you had Gaurdiola's Barca who were dominating ever team in which they played until Di Matteo's Blues came along proving that Chelsea's more defensive style could get you results. Mourinho's Inter also delivered a crushing blow to Barca's European hopes.
SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited
Passing Side To Side Like A Crab? Or Hit And Hope?

See, in this article I discuss two main styles in which we tend to opt for in FM. And that is Short Fluid football or Long Ball and a more direct balanced approach.

Many teams have been known for almost tearing up the rule book in football i.e Leicester where they won the Premier League Title with minimum possession and pass completion.

Other teams, or more so managers, have been critisised for the style of football in which they encourage. Whilst I would never want to see Arsenal play a less attractive style of football, there is just something awesome and impressive with the likes of Leicester,Atletico, Chelsea and Bolton Wanderers. All teams in their prime caused multiple issues with the style in which the manager cemented in the team.

Growing up and being at the ripe old age of 27, I got into football in the late 90's and early 2000's. I remember vividly Nikolas Anelka's goal against us where Big Sam's Bolton beat us 3-1. Although this proved to be a less attractive style, which Alladyce would later get criticized for, at the end of the day, it got the result, which is surely all the matters in this game?

They other team which I would love to be able to manage was Mourinho's Chelsea in the early days. Mourinho was also critisised for his style and manner in which he achieved his wins. To me, again I think a 1-0 win shows great defensive prowess. Again, despite being a Gooner, I would much prefer a 1 or 2-0 win as opposed to a 6-4 win.
Pass And Push Up?

The main reason for having this new defensive, more balanced and structured outlook is due to the frustration of conceding goals. In past FM's I have had to encourage an Attacking style. Perhaps its my poor tactics, but I strongly feel, if you don't push up that defensive line, you don't score. Also in the second season you will find your tactics no longer work. This is when I have had to make my team both more Fluid & Push up more. This is where I now just want to stick with a standard balanced 4-4-2.

Spain were often guilty and in the end sussed out with their passing style of side to side like a crab. The movement would not go anywhere and result in a goal once teams figured their tactics out and kept deep, frustrating the opponent. Don't get me wrong, Spain were awesome in the World Cup and Euro 2012 destroying Italy 4-0.
The Legend That Was Brian Clough

So another option on FM18 is to start off with a lower league team but a team that currently remains in the Football League. Due to my impatience, I have often opted for taking control of a Championship team, seeking world domination.

Brian Clough started as manager of Hartlepool, before being approached by Derby where he took his team from the second division to first division glory. This was an incredible achievement as Liverpool were the team to beat in the 70's. He then went to Notts Forest where he again secured the First Division, along with the European Cup 2 years running.

I tried to emulate his achievements on past FM's however now I struggle to continue if I don't get promoted in my first season...

What is an over thinker to do..

I mean as I have said before, you need to ensure the team you are managing is a team you have a personal interest in. I play with the 2D dots view also, so I have to enjoy the feel of the team.... (Im not insane I swear).

So if you are in it for the long run. i.e managing a Championship team, and are seeking world domination, I personally have to be 100% enthusiastic about that particular Club.
SirArsene1991's avatar Group SirArsene1991
5 yearsEdited
One Of Many Conclusions

I will carry on trying to raise awareness to all FM users in terms of selecting a team. I imagine a lot of other people find it simple but I personally take so many things into account when deciding on a team to manage.

I personally am most enthusiastic about what I know, so managing in the English Premier League. I love the idea of a Mourinho file where you take an Italian team to glory after conquering Chelsea for example. However, when managing in Italy, I find I don't really follow this league, I don't really know much about the other teams in the league other than the big names. This is what makes me lose interest easily.

So shut the hell up Jack, quit moaning and be a Premiership team I here you say.....

Well yes that would be the ideal case wouldn't it. My point is, If I were to manage a Premier League side, it would need to be one that I am ok with leaving. I mean if I were to take over United, I would want to bring success for any many seasons as Fergi did.

So because I know for a fact I would get bored of taking over a team season after season, I I find myself wondering under what circumstances I would be content. Im concidering Man City where then I have the option to go elsewhere if I want to.
Some Sort Of Resolution?

So as I have discussed above, it is obviously important to start as a team that you have some sort of a burning interest in managing. What also needs to be taken into account is how much interest you have in this team. Are you going to find yourself bored after the first season? perhaps not if you are a West Ham fan for example, and are seeking world domination.

I am an Arsenal fan, however I don't enjoy being Arsenal as much as I would like, for whatever reason that is, I do not know. The 2 Manchester clubs seem to appeal to me more with having the opportunity to go manage aboard if need be under Man City. If I were to resume my Manchester United save linked with my story; Red Devils Rise Again I could see myself enjoying managing season by season, however, should I lose interest, I wouldn't want to leave United.

This may well be an odd interest, but I have always appreciated United and the teams that Fergie built. Whether players with more work rate like Ji Sung Park and Darren Fletcher would be signed by the top teams today, I don't know.

Manchester City I have never really been impressed by. The past season gone however, my views have changed. I must admit it is 90% the Guardiola factor. I loved Watching Barcelona when he was their manager. This makes me want to create a team that can dominate not just the league, but Europe.
Take What You Can Get

So firstly before anyone jumps to the conclusion that I am just overall a very bad manager overall and should pack up and move on, maybe your right..... haha.

So my recent save with Manchester City has failed. So I am still in the FA Cup and Title race. However I chose to delete my save after an unacceptable 5-1 loss to unlikely title contenders Arsenal. This resulted in putting me in 3rd place after being in first all season. Now, maybe I am a sore loser but it was clear that no matter what tactics and formation I implement, I could not hack City in terms of consistent results. FM can be the most frustrating game when all of a sudden your tactics stop working mid season.

So at this moment in time, I currently have no primary save I am working on. I am thinking of creating a Chelsea save based on Mourinho's Chelsea. I admired the depth in the squad in the mid 2000's and the overall strength and experience the squad possessed.
Hola Sir....

Donde encuentro tu archivo sobre West Ham que mencionas arriba...????

@ Carlosh

Hola, muchas gracias por tu interés en mi archivo de West Ham. Desafortunadamente, las tácticas dejaron de funcionar para mí, así que borré el guardado. Si no está interesado en ninguno de mis otros archivos, consideraré crear otro salvamento de West Ham en el futuro cercano. Si tiene alguna pregunta que pueda responder, no dude en preguntar.
Forgive me Chelsea, I feel it again, the pull to the Reds

So we are all aware of Genie Scout im sure. When I started my Chelsea save last night, I noticed lady FM had certainly shone her light on Liverpool this year. I remember a previous FM where Arsenal were the best team by far. They had Nasri, Cesc, Sagna, Clichy, Van Persie, Koscielny and Ramsey. All of which had excellent current ability and great potential also.

On this years Game (well last year now) you have some real beasts in Liverpool's side after the departure of Coutinho. Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, T.Alexander Arnold, Salah,Mane, Firminho and Ben Woodburn. All insane. But I shall stick to my current save of Chelsea.

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