Dec 22

Get into the Football Manager Live Christmas Spirit


Christmas tree figs are all over our house, Sending and receiving insane amounts of cards that all say exactly the same thing, Attending parties with people we’d rather not be spending time with, Charities and carol singers out in force, Having to spend time with the in-laws, Fantastic TV, Unable to move a square inch on Oxford Street.

It’s officially the festive season, let’s rejoice!
For those who will be playing (or perhaps not playing) Football Manager Live over our favourite time of year, and would like to add a little ‘festive’ spirit to your gaming experience these are my 5 tips to improve your FML skills.

1 Go on a ‘Christmas’ manager holiday

If you are a highly active user, take a ‘Christmas’ manager holiday and don’t log into Football Manager Live for a few days. Now that we’re headed for a reset all will be lost anyway so it doesn’t matter if your team can’t find their way without you. It will be good to learn how to setup your team if you ever do need to take a few days (or longer) off from Football Manager Live post reset, setting up team selections and tactics correctly.

Having a squad where the ‘auto selector’ will still fill positions ‘right’ when players are suspended or injured. Having match plans that are sophisticated enough to be able to win matches in your absence. In addition to this, being able to properly setup your team to ’survive’ an offseason intact without you having to log in would also be a useful skill to have, and there’s also the added bonus you’ll be able to spend more time with your family!

2 Give all your players away to charity

Restart and then auto-select your team try and cobble together something that’s competitive. Starting with a pre-selected team looks like something we’ll be getting post reset, so perhaps there are some lessons to be learnt in starting with a foundation that you didn’t choose and trying to build on it.

Even though the current Football Manager Live economics are all out of whack compared to how they will be in new worlds, I think the emphasis here is less on solid financial decisions and more about building a team from what has been given to you, rather than what was hand picked by you. I think most managers in FML build teams to tactics, whereby it will actually be far more efficient (at least initially) post reset to have good skills in building tactics to suit your team.

3 Volunteer your time

Put your name forward to become an Organiser in your FA (or the Super FA). With the recent exodus of players from FMLive, as well as many former full time orgs now spending much less time in game, there’s sure to be lots of opportunities to become an FA organiser. It would be useful if you intend to possibly become an Organiser post reset (as the experience will undoubtedly help), or even just to learn exactly what goes on ‘behind the scenes’ might help you appreciate the work the Organisers do in the future.

4 Play the Christmas Tree (4-3-2-1) formation

The 4-3-2-1 formation (aka The ‘Christmas Tree’ formation) is well known for being used by Terry Venables with England, as well as more recently by Carlo Ancelotti with both Milan and now Chelsea. It includes a flat back 4, 3 MC’s, 2 AM’s and a Striker. It is a very narrow formation so providing player and team instructions to get some width is very important. The AMC’s tend to drift out wide to provide some attacking width. One of the MC’s tends to be a playmaker. The full backs are very important in this tactic (and indeed any tactic without wide midfielders) as they provide much of the attacking and defensive width.

Try getting your team to play efficiently using the Christmas Tree. It could be a good learning experience and tactical test. By having players ‘fixed’ to positions, it means you’ll be paying much closer attention to team and player instructions in order to get your team playing how you want under various circumstances.

5 Play the Upside-down Christmas Tree (2-3-4-1) formation

If you want a far bigger challenge using team and individual player instructions in a fixed formation then this is it ~ GK, 2 DC’s, 3 MC’s (or DMC’s), 4 AMC’s, 1 Striker. What do you get? An upside-down Christmas tree!

I would be interested to know if anyone can manage to build this tactic into a form that can consistently win matches. Good luck with trying to accommodate for that complete lack of defensive width!

Hope you all have a great Christmas and I’ll be back on here writing more for you to read in the New Year.

Written By Nick Kakoschke
Nick is the infamous Little Badger on the SI forums and manager of the Little Badgers in the Clough game world. A very successful manager in his time on FML he now aims to pass his knowledge on to others.
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