The Probability Factor On Football Manager

There can be no greater feeling on Football Manager than leading a team to glory through making the right decisions on and off the pitch. Whether it is building a side capable of dominating a domestic league for a number of years or able to survive against the odds in a higher division, taking a methodical approach when playing the game and analysing all of the statistics that are available can go a long way towards achieving success on any save file. Transfers, tactics and substitutions are to name just three from the plethora of choices that managers have to make on a weekly basis, and although even the best in the business have been known to get it wrong in the real world, Football Manager utilises a probability system that puts football fans in the shoes of Pep Guardiola, Massimo Allegri, Zinedine Zidane and other great managers who have got difficult decisions right when it matters most.

Managers have to accept that while they can meticulously plan for every eventuality and have all bases covered when it comes to match day, they also have to be prepared to take calculated gambles. Failing to play the odds can prove as costly as losing big whilst playing casino games on LadyLucks; taking a high number of gambles increases the probability of them backfiring badly on a manager, but making difficult decisions at crucial moments is part and parcel of the job. Substitutions often have the potential to change the entire dynamics of a match, and while bringing on fresh players in the latter stages is often considered a sensible decision in order to inject extra impetus and avoid running out of changes if someone gets injured or is sent off, managers have to be prepared to head into the unknown.

Making all three substitutions before the hour mark is an extremely bold move for any manager to make; it could either provide a team which a much-needed wake-up call if they are underperforming and losing in a game where they are clear favourites, or leave a manager with egg on his face if his side pick up injuries or red cards with no substitutions remaining. The changes themselves can prove decisive in deciding the outcome of a match, as although managers often turn to the best players on the bench in order to make the difference, opting for those that are in excellent form, despite not having the best overall attributes compared to others, may prove a shrewd move. It is probable that players who have high morale and have hit a purple patch will perform better than those who have stronger attributes, with strong levels of determination, concentration and work rate increasing the chances of a player maintaining a strong run of form.

The same attributes are also essential for every manager when it comes to trying to plan a way of winning against tougher opposition. Having players that are willing to fight for the cause and hold their nerve is imperative, particularly in moments when the opposition apply pressure and utilise their greater quality to take control of the game. Trying to throw the kitchen sink at a team that possess greater levels of quality in all areas of the pitch is equally as risky as placing everything on red at the roulette table at LadyLucks; the probability of victory in this scenario is extremely slim, as going on the offensive not only leaves a team vulnerable to the counter attack, but also leaves numerous gaps in midfield and defence that top quality teams can exploit. Combining players who are willing to fight for the cause with defensive-minded tactics that allows for counter attacking football when the opportunity arises would certainly improve the odds for any manager to prevail against tougher opposition.

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Football Manager Blog: The Probability Factor On Football Manager
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