Playing games is not only essential for progression - it also
comes in mighty handy for rooting out any players who aren't
performing particularly well. Look for anybody who isn't
pulling his weight for some reason, and then review his training
programme accordingly (poor training is more often than not the
reason behind his bad performance). Goalkeepers in particular,
need to be watched.
You'll find that many players are pretty slow on the ball, and
it's when you're in control of one of these that it's best to
play a passing game as much as possible. Don't try to run with
the ball as the defence will catch you every time.
Similarly, don't attempt to play a running game if your team as
a whole is pretty slow. Players run slower than normal when
they're on the ball, so its best to adopt 'chip and chase'
tactics, where you kick the ball in front of you, catch up with
it and so on.
The scanner is a lot more useful than many players appreciate -
in fact it's an essential passing tool. Use it as much as you
can to highlight players that are ready to move forward into
open space and to avoid areas filled with opposing players.
It's a bit like a crystal ball in a sense, allowing you to see
things in your mind just before they happen and so be prepared
for them. And don't worry about the scanner being obscured by
the action on the pitch - it moves automatically into the corner
of the screen that's most quiet to give you best views at all
And Smith must score! Or must he? Well, only if he knows exactly
what he's doing. Like a lot of contempary soccer simulations,
you'll find that diagonals always work best against the keepers,
as they have a hard time with the unusual angle of approach.
The best place to shoot from is just outside the box, and up
into the corner of the goal - if it's on target the keeper will
have a very hard time diving for it. Oh, and don't waste your
time with any fancy 'dribbling round the keeper' tricks. The
goalies here are far too shrewd for that caper and will take the
ball straight off you.
As nasty as it may sound, you should try to play dirty as much
as possible. It's well worth chopping down the opposition if
only to break up his flow of play - at best you could stop a
potential lethal attack before it's too late. The worst you are
ever likely to come up against is a free kick, but a lot of the
time you'll get away with it completely!
When playing the computer team, there's a handy tactic to employ
which enables you to find your way around annoying defenders -
take the longest route! Computer players expect you to take the
shortest route around them, so it's easy to sell them a dummy.
Training is vital - without it, your team will perform like a
bunch of geriatric wallies. It's a time consuming procedure to
make sure everyone has a training program for that week, but if
you want to stay with a chance you simply HAVE to do it. And
make sure you go through the entire squad, not just the team you
want to play in the next game, as you can never be sure as to
exactly who will be playing.
When buying players, always bid less than the asking price, as
the club that's selling the player you want is obviously keen to
get rid off him. And to make sure that your funds are topped up
at all times, make sure you've always got plenty of players up
for sale. You can root out the ones that are best to get rid of
during the matches.
Formation selection is always important, but something that's
often overlooked. When making this choice, you should select a
formation that caters to your team's style the best by covering
it's weak areas. For example, if your team is weak in defence,
select a formation that has a strong defensive line-up.