Friday, 28 November 2008

Ashkan Dejagah Signs

Well watch the vid! Pace, Power, Technique and Desire, just how I like em!

The Youth Gamne and Stuff

From what I've seen thus far a LOT more managers are taking more interest in youth compared to Beta. I always felt that for the most part I invested in first team as a priority and then the youth game. I could never much see the point in spending £20k wages on a player so that in five seasons he's actually worth £20k a day. That's £3m, just as well go and buy a £3m player!

There are youths that appear that are bankers, clearly going to be great in a few seasons and they are worth more but once a Gameworld gets going the prices start climbing fast. I decided to get a working U17 team after two days as hopefully if there is just one star in there it's going to have been worth it. The bankers will be going for £10k a day in no time so jumping in early makes sense.

U17 need to be kept fit and it makes sense to be able to field a team at this level, some of the players won't pan out I'm sure but they'll help to keep players fit. You always get a few shocks as well!

One of the kids I do have high hopes for is M'Villa, he's not a banker but he has the basics in place, finishing, some technique, strength at 13 for a 16yo is impressive and with aggression and bravery he's not going to be afraid to use this feature of his game. Going to get stuck in this lad!

We won't really know for a few seasons but we'll have an idea how far he can go during this season, if it doesn't work out? Well £300 a day that's not much of a gamble, low risk high reward, what the youth side of the game should be about. Seems odd that managers with big wage bids on 16yo want to take big risks for what is then effectively low reward.

Well you would assume so as we're still to here decisive action about what SI plan to do to keep Gameworlds alive. I do have something of a bee in my bonnet at the moment about Gameworld length although SI have been absolutely brilliant in their support of the game but I'm starting to get the impression that they have the rabbit 'bright eyes syndrome' on this issue. In saying that SI are not a team you underestimate so I'm sure there will be some action way before it's too late.

Looking at the senior team we need maturity and reputation, I think many managers go for a few low rep players which are average ability and then one or two stars. My plan is to have six or seven above average players with a few very talented kids. The average ability is the same just I should have a wider spread of ability on the pitch.

The back four I'm pretty happy with although the goalie is a big question, he's a nice shot stopper but that's about it. So we've lined up a few targets with good influence, bit of rep and able to organise the defence. There are a few on the list but bid is now in for one.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Good to be back!

Well thus far all is well in Shearer, nice atmos, we're losing a lot (doh) and finding it hard having no money. It's great to be looking at 16yo's and think wow I might sign this kid and see him at 24!

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Inter Retirement Blog

Nick has a blog up now well worth a read, Football Manager Live Blog Inter Retirement.

Another Podcast

FM Britian have released another podcast, once again it's the business, some good tactical points made. Link: Football Manager Live Podcast Episode 4 and a feature on using tactics in FM Live.

Shearer Launch

A smooth launch for the Gameworld even though from a personal point of view the wife demanded we go out, I had to do the school run, feed four kids, so a bit of a rush to cram in some time to FM Live helping and to pick a squad.

GK:Hatuka - 19, nice stats not a known wonder kid but has been excellent so far. With the changes to finance will need to bring in a senior but much later.
DL: Gaal, early twenties very safe and solid one should be ok for the first couple of seasons, he's that young might be a stayer.
DC: J Matinez I looked and looked at 20 he's not going to be a free lock but can play LB and will do a job at senior level.
DC: M Rodriguez 23 I'm sure I had this guy in GW6 for a seaon and a right back then (also covers that position) very safe not going to turn in any match winning performances but also shouldn't cost me any which is what I think is required at the back.
DR: Tetteh 16, yes just 16 I've never heard of him and my filter turned him up very decent for his age, no, for his age, amazing but not going to be keeping him in first team.
ML: Albayrak 17, I really wanted to get Cedric who's a AML/FC but Nick from Inter already had bagged him, bit of flair / pace not bad technicals.
MC: F Martinez 18 didn't look all that from stats but when I did autopick got put in this position and can really turn it on.
MC: S Parker 28, well there you go a lump of cash went on this fella, 18 determination, massive workrate and pretty technical as well, a natural captain. Will almost certainly become a fixture over the coming seasons. I do imagine I'll only keep until 30/31.
MR: Doran 17, another kid this position needs looking at soon although done well so far.
FC: P Roberto 18 another flair player already bagged a senior hat trick, very nice.
FC: Wendell 19, a Jakswans legend! In three starts in Gameworlds this fella has featured. The thing I really like about him is that he starts with 15 pace and not much strength but in previous Gameworlds he gone on to quickly get a little faster and a LOT stronger.

Other highlights, as I write this I've just signed Torrejon a 22 year old DC, I've kind of figured out that 22 and 23yo's offer great value for a few reasons, one, youth teams don't want them and senior teams are after bigger names so it's quite uncompetitive. Two, their pretty much ready for first team football (assuming you pick the right player) and three, should still have plenty of fast development left to go. We'll see how that plays out.

Another is Mutumbo DM 17 years old he's a 'get it and give it' type under 17 but pretty well developed.

Looking back to GW6 I made mistakes ones I won't repeat (hopefully), it's important to keep the end game in sight and that for the first season is to try and secure Premiership football or at least put us in a position to get there in season 2. Spending thousands on kids isn't going to help achieve that goal despite really enjoying playing U17's.

I've a bid in for another 22yo and that'll mean till the season starts we're going to be very short of funds, it's then a case of trying to put together a U17 squad so I can enjoy that part of the game.

So there should be just two types of player purchase, senior players that will hold their position for two seasons or decent looking U17's.

Shopping list, maturity next, need to watch the team really, results are irrelevant at this stage I think I'll need a keeper, fairly happy with back four and naturally Scott Parker should be dandy, in fact I think I've five players that can play up front and either centre midfield or on the right wing, no cover on the left wing though....

Saturday, 22 November 2008

First FM Live Soundpack

I had a fiddle with sounds taking a popular FM08 soundpak and just copied over the files. If you find your match sounds in something like
\Application Data\Sports Interactive\Football Manager Live\fml_live_v1\add_ons\match_sounds

Then overwrite the files found then with the ones in this rar file, Link: FM Live Soundpack.

It's not quite great but not far off, surely the community could do better?

Friday, 21 November 2008

The Grip is Tightening

Starting to see SI tighten the grip now on managers moving around gameworlds. The way I think this will go is that come January you will not be able to join a new non-pro gameworld your choice will be:-
  1. Start in Pro Gameworld 
  2. Put two seasons into an old gameworld.

Beta 1.1

Finally we can talk about it as it's 'out', GW7 is so dead and my team is so murdered by activity rating I haven't really bothered logging in. Besides staduims don't work for some reason.

So many ways in which fianance has been changed, taxes, signing on fee's, slowing down of rep gain, money sinks for staduims I do think it's overkill but it's a beta.

Other than that 1.1 should leave you in no doubt in SI's desire and capability to vastly improve this game very quickly.

Finance Changes & Version 1.01

I won't cover the entire change to the finance system I will state just that there is a misconception ithat higher wages = more daily profit which is totally wrong!

Coming off this I'm not totally sure my starting strategy would change that much it sure will be interesting to see how it plays out in Shearer anyway.


I'll be moving this blog soon to wordpress, from what I've seen it's upteen more times more powerful than Googles effort. So in a few days Jakswans Football Manager Live Blog.

Saturday, 15 November 2008

A Bad Day

I feel sorry for SI not only do they go to great lengths to protect their product but the anti-piracy things in the game cause them a load of grief with genuine customers.

The worse part about it though strong anti-piracy measures do act like a red rag to a bull for the pirates. Within twenty four hours it appears to be cracked. PC gaming will die if this continues.

Still WOW has made Blizzard a lot of cash, so maybe FM Live is the way to go.

Fm Britian TTF09

Hadn't listened to the last ten minutes of the podcast and then noticed that there latest Tactical Theorems and Frameworks 09 was out! Grab it off the link below.

Football Manager Tactics Bible 2009

Rant Ranty Rant

This isn't talking about new features or anything and injuries are in Version 1.1 as they are in Version 1. The test GW is strictly for casual users if your a mod. Fair enough we're supposed to remain focused on the retail worlds.

So I set up to play casual, naturally with a load of kids keeping them fit is important so I join a load of comps so they'll be in tip top condition throughout my absence.

Naturally with my activity level dropping to 1.0 the injuries start going silly. The system is broke and I'm fed up of mentioning it.

Both Barrels
In fact I'm doing both barrels today, around six months ago there was a thread complaining about the number of trialists being used after the launch of GW8. I posted in that thread using the words 'exploit' another user posted a detailed guide on his starting strategy, 'use trialist to win comps' being the theme. Three monthes later there is a big rush to get some fixes in prior to release to close some of these exploits.

Phew, got that off my chest feel better now. Whilst this is a superb game with massive potential I'm not afriad to have a go about it and no one can call me a fan boy!

Get Sacked Podcast

I know the guys at FM Britain cover FM09 but it is the FM Live engine, there is some advanced tactical talk that could help no end so be sure to check out the latest Get Sacked Podcast.

Interesting idea

I had a plan to replace the match sounds found in C:\Documents and Settings\\Application Data\Sports Interactive\Football Manager Live\fml_cluster1\add_ons\match_sounds with some I could find on My skills with audio are somewhat limited though and although it works I couldn't blend them in.

Anyone out there good with Sound?

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Starting Strategy

With the launch of the Fowler gameworld today that completes the first batch to go live. It's the only one with room! So they've managed to sell out the first batch. It's actually a good thing Fowler still has room as literally you can pay for the game and play straight away.

I've been thinking about my starting strategy and going back to GW6 I was very early to get an U17 team going. Although it's a trade off as you'll miss out on senior players it didn't half pay off at youth level later on. Once the gameworld gets going your 15/16yo's with 16 pace and 14 finishing go for upto £25k a day at the start these type of players I got for £200!

It's a dilemma for sure.

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Tactics: Quick and Dirty 4-5-1

4-5-1 is the new Narrow!

It used to be that narrow was the fashion in FM Live and most teams played it. I don't know why or when it fell out of fashion but 4-5-1 is now the popular choice. The BBC diagram actually give a good representation of how it can play with two midfielders making attacking runs.

High Defensive Line
You would have thought that a high defensiuve line works well here but it doesn't, my thinking was the danger is the through ball and with only one striker to aim for should be easy to cut out.

With their being five midfielders you'll lose the midfield battle if you take the fight there, it's simply a numbers game. Their players will have space and time to find the through ball. As the one striker is normally the star he has the intelligence / ability / raw pace and power to deliver the killer blow.

Another considertation is the wingers these will certainly also be looking for the ball over the top. A high line can work but check the striker he's fielding if there is a superstar with pace then forget a high line. If you take this option it's vital to play with a very flat back four ALL of the four should have Barrows (Backward Arrows).

Coming off the back of a 4-4-2 I tend to try a 4-4-1-1 changing a striker into an AMC so at least your now playing 4-5-1 of a sort. Once I get back playing and get the skills one of my more effective tactics can come into play. Basically it's two MC's with forward runs a deep line and counter attack. This tends to allow their midfield to pile forward but then catch them on the hop with a fast break.

To give you an idea of depth in the game I once played a team playing 4-1-0-4-1 which seemed like a dam silly formation to me. In fairness the guy had a heavily tweaked set up that relied totally on the DM, Xabi Alonso. His tactics were basically field him the ball and wait for him with his 20 passing to ping one of the AMC/AMR/AML, what a nightmare. The game then became about nailing Alonso, close him out of the game and they were doomed otherwise it was carnage.

I do hear complaints about 'there isn't enough to do' in FM Live here is another quick tip for you. You have AI rights to a game, click the team then look through his past results. Pick a game he lost badly, pick a game he won well, you now have a very quick idea of what to do and what not to do in your AI game.

Make sure you watch the games though what looks like a 4-4-2 might be a narrow / wide 4-4-2 or a 4-4-2 with a high line.

The other important thing with tactics is to remember it isn't the bottom line, luck, form, and the players all play their part, don't get cut up about it just always remember your just tipping the odds slightly in your favour.

Oh and took don't take my word as gospel as I feel out of my dpeth with tactics sometimes, these hopefully will just start you thinking.

LongTime & Free SEO Tips

Well I'm somewhat out of the loop these days until Shearer goes live. Can't talk about 1.1 and it's very early days for that anyway. Still hasn't stopped me reading the forums and keeping my ear to the ground.

Might make a couple of posts today as I feel a bit ranty and as much as I try I might do the pyramid thing again, lol.

Anyway firt up new podcast from Fm Britian and this time it was fellow mod Nik and his featured blog A Moderators Life, direct link to the show: FML Podcast Episode 2.

Whilst I'm here I thought I'd do some SEO tips for some budding bloggers. If your going to link other sites make sure you do it in the format as I've done above, the anchor text should be what the link is about. So in the link 'FML Podcast Episode 2' it doesn't just show the URL as anchor text but what that link is about.

To see the importance of anchor text type 'click here' into google. See what comes top, Adobe, yet that page doesn't have a title of click here or say click here anywhere on the page. However other sites linking to that page link it thus:- Click Here to get Adobe Reader.

That's how Google works, it reads backlinks to pages and rates the page to be about what the anchor text says.

£70 an hour that's my normal rate, so if you read that you owe me, a £1million player in FM Live will do!

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Gameworld Life

Something that Jordan said in the Podcast was that maybe SI could limit the number of spaces to new users, my initial reaction to this was the Sega accountants would be horrified. Thinking about it though, unless they keep the gameworlds active then the loyal customer base will fade away so it does actually make good commercial sense.

I think Si have almost got this nailed with the advanced gameworlds idea. Assuming every user in an advanced gameworld has some skills going into it then it makes going into an old gameworld much more attractive. You do a few months in there and then join a later advanced gameworld having done your 'apprenticeship' in an old one.

Si have announced some changes to the finance system which slows down progression so leaving a gameworld where your established means your going to have to do it all again.

It needs some fine tuning, I don't now, maybe a two months for the price of two if you join Gameworld X. They could even offer existing customers a reduced price second account...

Whatever happens it's pretty clear that Si have a few tricks up their sleeve to sort it.

Oh and another thing! Say you have a gameworld with only 500 managers and one with 1000, well logically it would much easier to establish yourself in a lower populated gameworld. I mean 1000 managers all wanting to sign Ronaldo compared to 500 has to be easier! So naturally the lesser populated gameworlds would become much more attractive.

In fact assuming SI remain committed to a Gameworld once it starts then if today your in a gameworld with only a few managers in, your laughing!

OK, nobody join Shearer :)

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Tactics Quick and Dirty for FM Live

With my Gameworld Shearer not starting for what feels like an age there won't be much to comment on over the next few weeks in terms of FM Live. There are some big changes in 1.01 but not had the ok to discuss (some are quite dramatic). So in the meantime I'd thought I'd do amateur tactics.

If know FM Britain have some great tactics and some plans to produce some extensive guides but these my quick and dirty tips. How I tend to deal with them in game and why it probably goes horribly wrong. Today playing against 4-4-2.

I normally play 4-4-2 myself and it's a very common formation. I haven't quite worked out why I struggle so much against it. The default tactics has one central midfielder staying back (Backward Arrow = Barrow) and the other going foward (Farrow). One of the issues I have with it is that the defensive midfielder stays either left or right so the formation is a sucker for an AMC coming through the middle.

So generally against this I'll turn turn the MC with Barrow into a DM and the MC with Farrow into an AMC. maybe pushing up the defensive line. Seems to work well against a 4-4-2.

The DM or Defensive Midfielder seems to see a lot of the ball, mainly as he's often the one in the most space. So to that end I tend to spend a lot of my budget on a decent DM these days.

The 4-4-2 often relies on wing play to get goals and in GW6 I had Sergio Ramos ,a right back or Central Defender, if the opposition had a very good left winger I'd switch Ramos to the right back position. So it's nice to have solid Centre Backs which can double up in this position.

Monday, 3 November 2008

Get Sacked Podcast

I had the honor of making a guest appearance on Jordan Coopers Get Sacked Podcast. Hope my Welsh accent wasn't too over the top. It'll be appearing here.

Saturday, 1 November 2008

How Injuries Work in FM Live

Here is how injuries work, a player can be injured for X number of days, these range from one day to a few weeks. The number of injuries that you get depends on your activity rating, the less activity the more likely you are to experience an injury. This is in order that a highly active player in theory gets the same proportion of injuries as an inactive one.
Play in Spurts? Tough!
A few problems what if you play the game in spurts? Say you play once a week you log on to play twenty / thirty games maybe. Well unlikely that'll you'll be doing that as low activity rating means the 'activity system' will pillage your squad like a bunch of vikings on drugs. After a few games unless you want to watch your reserves playing you just as well log off.

The 'activity system' has been known to throw the odd wobble, at one point everyone started with an activity rating of one so everyone got a load of injuries, at one point I saw a user with something like 30 injuries. So it's not exactly on the money.
A Simpler System
A much simpler system would to have looked at squad read % of players injured and then set probability from there, don't really know why that would not have worked.

The second issue, say you have Pato and Sergio Ramos in your team, clearly stars of the show well say their both injured, you going to play that important cup game then? Crazy that the game actually encourages you to log off or to not play games.
I'm not advocating a football game without Injuries
I'm not advocating a football game without injuries but as the only really important games are FA games why not have it so that only FA games count in terms of injuries. Why not have it so that players are injured for X number of FA games. The close season counts as three / four FA games.

A system that's fair to everyone and actually encourages you to play.