Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the second post about Football Manager Slack Tactics Challenge. After challenges with Nice and Anzhi, this time we took over Polish side Lechia Gdańsk with a 4-4-2 formation and to use Target Man and Poacher was a must.
Daniel Gear selected this formation for the third FMSlack Challenge and after some clubs pre-select we chose Lechia in the simple poll straight in the Slack channel.
To be fair, Lechia was my own tip so I was pleased this club won the poll as I wanted to play with striker Marco Paixao. Unfortunately, this Portuguese striker was injured for two months so I had to change my original plans.
The rules of the challenge were simple same as in the previous two. No transfers, no staff changes and play a half of the season.
Polish Ekstraklasa has 16 teams so it means I played 15 league matches and I was successful also in the domestic cup so I played until the Quarter Final.
Bellow, you can find some notes from the save. It all started with a long term injury of Milos Crasic and it looked like there will be a lot of injuries but thankfully it didn’t affect our style too much.
Formation & Roles & Instructions
As it was said this time we played with 4-4-2 formation including Target Man and Poacher roles. I decided to play with two fullbacks with support duty and two central defenders with defend duty.
Midfield quarter included Winger with attack duty on the left side and Defensive Winger with support duty on the right side. There were also Ball Winning Midfielder with defend duty and Central Midfielder with support duty in the central part of our midfield.
Team Mentality was set to Standard and Team Shape to Fluid. Team instructions were left very simple as I used only three – Higher Tempo, Play Much Narrower and Use Offside Trap.
Our Poacher had also set “Mark Tighter” instruction and all midfielders had “Shoot Less Often”.
This is a picture from our league match with Ruch with Heat Map and Shots. We won this match 3-0 despite we were one man down from the 47th minute.
Notes from the Challenge
- Milos Crasic injured for 4 months during the first training of pre-season
- Six players on injury list before the first competitive match
- Main Target Man Marco Paixao injured for 12 days in third league match against Wisla
- “Go out there and impress me.” And they did exactly what I wanted from them…
- Marco Paixao injured for 2 months in the match against Termalica (26th August). That meant Grzegorz Kuswik became our main Target Man. These two players had 4 goals both before Paixao’s injury…
- Manager of the Month for August for Rensie with 4 wins from 4 matches
- After the August/September international break, we played in Craiova, they were unbeaten in the first four matches and top of the league but after the defeat in Polish Cup 2nd Round with Bytovia they struggled to win also in the league and we won 1-0 thanks to a penalty by Vitória.
- Central defender Steven Vitória scored 3 goals in 8 league matches, two from penalties.
- “Come on lads, show me what you can do to keep our run going.”
- And they did it as we beat Lech Poznań 2-1 thanks to goals by Mak and Flávio Paixao. Poznaň had 61% of possession…
- Older players were unhappy with their playing time but who cares until I will need them…
- Despite I made a lot of changes for Polish Cup third round we beat Legia 2-1 at home after goals by Kuswik and van Kessel.
- The strongest possible squad was selected for the 10th league round and we beat Ruch comfortably despite Peszko was sent off in the 47th minute.
- After 10 matches were played we were first with 28 points, five points ahead of Legia and the only one undefeated team in the league.
- So, five matches to go in the Ekstraklasa – Legia (away), Zaglebie (away), Piast (home), Arka (away), Pogon (home) and Polish Cup Quarter Final against Piast.
- September boss award for Rensie with 100% win ratio…
- Just before the away match with Legia, Flávio Paixao injured for two weeks. He was one of three best players so far
- The away match against Legia was a school of effectivity as we scored two goals from 3 shots on target and the match ended with a 2-2 draw. Defender Vitória with another successful penalty.
- Striker Kuswik injured for three months in the first Cup Quarter Final against Piast
- Marco Paixao back in the starting XI for the 14th league match with Arka and he scored a brace in a 2-0 win against a fierce rival
- October boss award for Rensie after three wins and one draw in four matches
- The last match of this challenge was against Pogoń at home. Six players were injured but only Kuswik was the one from starting XI and young midfielder Haraslín was suspended due to yellow cards
- It was probably our worst performance and we conceded after the half-time but thanks to goals by Mak and Marco Paixao we won 2-1 and we finished this challenge unbeaten and top of the league
As you can see, despite injury our main Target Man Marco Paixao scored six goals in eight appearances. Grzegorz Kuswik scored the same amount of goals in 16 appearances.
Michal Mak became our best player during the save as he played in Poacher role and he scored 11 goals in 17 appearances and made two assists. Flávio Paixao had most assists as he created seven goals for his teammates.
I was also impressed by central midfielder Lukáš Haraslín who played in CM role and he scored two goals. And experienced central defender Steven Vitória scored five goals, four from penalties.
The last thing I want to share with you from this challenge is an away match against Zaglebie. We won 3-0 after a brace by Mak and one goal by Kuswik and it’s probably my favourite match as we scored lovely goals and I really enjoyed the domination on the pitch despite stats show something else in terms of possession..
- Final league position – 1st
- Final league points – 41
- League goals scored – 29
- League goals conceded – 7
- Target Man goals – Marco Paixao – 6 in 10 appearances
- Poacher goals – Michael Mak – 11 in 17 appearances
- Biggest league win – 3:0 against Ruch & Zaglebie
- Most goals in a league game: 3-1 against Slask & Korona
- Lowest league position: 2nd
- Least goals scored: 1 (4x 1-0 win)
- Most goals conceded: 2 in a match against Legia & Wisla in domestic cup
Thanks for reading…
…if you have some questions let me know in the comment section or on Twitter or in Slack channel.