Villarreal: Tactics & Transfer Planning

I’m trying to be a bit more consistent with blogging for this save. Little posts about different aspects of my save. The idea has been shamelessly stolen from @ilmediano, be sure to check out his blog if you haven’t already, it’ll be worth your time!


We may have qualified for the Champions League, but we didn’t perform like a Champions League team. Our countless draws and dull football really didn’t cut it for me.

I had my idea pretty well mapped out, 4141 that would transition into more of a 433 shape in attack. Left midfielder cutting in and offering some tasty creative passes while the guy on the right would try to get in the box to help score. Two midfielders would stay quite centrally and one of them would bomb on. The left back would also offer a wide option in attack. It never worked how I wanted it to on a consistent basis.

We’d score goals, but never really killed teams off. That really explains all the draws. We were decent defensively, but due to our attacking constraint and isolation at times, we didn’t dominate.

Before picking a new shape, I drew out several possible tactical incarnations, but these were the four I narrowed it down to. A couple of interesting ones, but also a couple of boring ones.

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Our best player last season was Carlos, hence why three of these feature a Raumdeuter, a role that he pretty much played last season as his instructions were very similar.

I really wanted to try out the 4132 with Raumdeuter, but I don’t know if my players are ready for a crazy tactic just yet. I’m certainly going to remember that tactic as it’s a shape I’d like to try out.

As it stood though, now wasn’t the time for that kind of shenanigans and I eventually settled on the boring old 4411. This season I’ll make use of a winger on the left and use Carlos more as a deep Inside Forward. I’m not sure if he’ll be the long term option on the right though, I’ll see how the tactic works out.

Transfer Planning

With a tactical shape chosen, I could begin narrowing down the players that I had on my shortlist. As the season wore on, I had searched and scouted about 40-50 players, not including the ones that my scouts found on their various scouting trips. I had built up a list of interesting potentially targets, now I had to find the right ones to fit my new formation and style.

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Some of these guys might join, or not…

I couldn’t just buy specialists though, I want my signings to have the potential to play at least one other position. Central players that can play at the base or top of a midfield three would be perfect, strikers that can play wide as well as lead the line etc. It’s not always possible to get those sorts of players, but it would really help ease the pressure on the squad should I get any long term injuries. Plus, if a 4411 doesn’t work out, I’ve got options to change it up. Villarreal are the sort of club that would sign multi-functional players due to financial constraints.


It’s not all about the arrivals, summer is about deciding what guys aren’t working out or aren’t right for the system. I expect players to leave due to their transfer clauses being activated. Also, if a club bids double the value of a player, then I have to accept due to my rules in my first post. I’m not overly keen to keep hold of players for the sake of it. If I’m not using them, I’ll cash in. We’ve not been given a huge budget to work with. If I move the slider around for the budget, I get a maximum of five million pounds.

I’ll check back in with my transfer business update soon.

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