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4-1-3-2 Help

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Hi all, looking for some FM09 tactical advice. Posted this on another forum but I didn't get a reply so I thought I'd 'go official'...

I'm 11 years into a career with Olbia, in Italy. For the first five years or so I did a fairly decent job, taking them up from the bowels of the pyramid (Serie C2/A or something) to Serie B via two promotions, playing a tried and trusted quick and direct 4-4-2 system, but in Serie B I seem to have have plateaued.

I've only come close to promotion once, losing in the play-off final last season (it's now 2021). Over the summer something seems to have gone rotten and I'm only partially putting it down to players agitating for moves - I've dealt with that pretty well for almost ten seasons (as Olbia are a tiny club and I tend to sign a lot of young players who get snapped up as soon as they show some promise). I've got a really good squad, easily good enough for promotion, but I think that 4-4-2 system basically needs to change.

I'm wobbling in terms of job security at the moment as I'm 16th in the league with about 12 games left, but I want to try a new system for next season. Basically I want advice about this system:


(The names won't mean anything as they're all newgens)

Should the central midfielders be making forward runs? How many of them? Should I use a playmaker? What passing style would be most appropriate? Should passing be focused through the middle (as seems obvious...)? How attacking can my full-backs be?

Any advice would be gratefully received as I'm struggling to come up with the answers myself at the moment...

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without seeing how you have the players set up _ i would assume the following: Your full backs are joiing in the attack and crossing ball into the box from either mixed or by-line? As you have your #6 playing more of a defensive roll I would have all 3 mids on atttacking /support duties

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Thanks Crazyscotsman. To tell you the truth I was completely unsure about my full-backs and have tried them in a few different ways, but yes, at the moment their crossing is 'mixed'. Thanks for the advice about the 3 MCs, they aren't set up in any particular way - I was really just looking for advice on what would work best with this setup, rather than asking why it wasn't working. I've been trying to use the central midfielder as a playmaker, with both the wider ones as more box-to-box. Using all three as attacking midfielders hadn't occurred to me - I guess I wasn't sure if that would leave me with enough protection, but of course 5 going forward and 5 defending is desirable. Do you think this formation is suited to any particular passing style (or width setting) over another?

I'm also guessing - as it's quite a narrow formation - that it's better to use a playmaker than a target man? I've got a hulking lump of a 6'6" striker with pretty good attributes so I've got the tools to play a more direct game...

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