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How to Set Up Tactical Player Instructions on Football Manager

With the tactical player instructions, you can really customise and get creative with the tendencies each player carries out on Football Manager.
Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager

Guide on understanding and utilising tactical player instructions in Football Manager.


As Football Manager players, we all want that perfected tactic or maybe just something a little different, that the opposition won’t be able to cope with. With the tactical player instructions, you can really customise and get creative with the tendencies that each player carries out on the pitch.

Creating or finding a tactic that fires you through the season is one thing but seeing something on the pitch that is of our own work or tactical vision, gives some sense of achievement, right? Let’s go through the ins and outs of player instructions and the things you will need to be mindful of.

Accessing Player Instructions


Accessing the player instructions is simple within the game. All you need to do is click on the player shirt within the tactics screen (on the pitch), and a sub-menu will appear next to it.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022

When the sub-menu appears, you will see instructions related to the selected role on the pitch, such as a left-back set as a wing-back (Attack). By going to the edit option, you can add instructions. These will be visible once added in the submenu with a settings cog next to it.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022


Tactical Suitability


There are a few important things to remember when adding individual role/player instructions;

    - Does it suit the tactic you are using?

    - Does it fit in with the roles of other players around them? For example, will the left-back and left-winger work well together with their newly assigned instructions

    - The main thing – DOES IT BENEFIT THE TEAM?

Player instructions need to suit the tactic


Let’s take a closer look at these points above to break it down a bit. In terms of suiting the tactic, the player instructions need to fit in with what you’re trying to achieve. Theoretically, if it’s a tiki-taka tactic, you don’t want your advanced playmaker set to ‘take more risks’ or play ‘direct passes’.

However, if it’s a fluid counter tactic, then you would want that directness and a risk taker in this role as you need that kind of speed within the play. Here is an example based on an attacking counter tactic to show you what you’d look for from the advanced playmaker (this can relate to other AM roles as well, potentially).

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022


Player instructions need to fit the roles of players around


Now when we’re making a link between roles, there is always a knock on effect. Let’s look at a 4-3-3 and focus on the left-back, left winger and striker.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022

The left-back in this tactic is set on support as the left winger is an inside forward on attack. The striker is an advanced forward also on attack. As an inside forward is being used essentially, the left-back will fill the wide space voided by the inside forward. In this case, the left-back is asked to stay wider and get further forward. Out of general preference, ‘cross from deep’ is used as in transition, it means the full-back can get back into position quicker.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022

On to the inside forward, and their set up is more or less done before any additional instructions. The main points is they are going to ‘Get Further Forward’, ‘Cut Inside with the Ball’ and ‘Shoot More Often’. Sometimes there will be no option to shoot, and they may cut in to cross; in this scenario, I have added ‘Aim Crosses at – Centre’. If you are using this instruction, be mindful of who is in the area the cross is going into; the main things to look out for is good attributes in heading, first touch and composure.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022

Lastly, for the advanced forward, it’s the things you’d expect to see, but the addition was ‘Shoot More Often’ as it’s always great to see a striker who looks for the opportunity and has an eye for goal in and outside of the box.

Tactical Player Instructions in Football Manager 2022

Player instructions need to benefit the team


Now when talking about benefiting the team, it’s in relation to the player themselves effectively. If a playmaker in the team is asked to ‘Take More Risks’, do they have a good enough vision attribute for this within the team or for the league’s standard? When asking the striker to ‘Shoot More Often’, do they have a suitable level of finishing and composure?

This should give an idea of what is meant benefiting the team because if the player doesn’t suit the instruction, it will have an adverse effect on the team in matches. This is also a great way to learn more about a player in the team you are managing or, of course, for one of the many new signings we all love to make!

READ ALSO: 5 Ways to Make a Comeback on Football Manager

General Tips & Tricks


There are a few things to think about to make things easier when using additional player instructions. Let’s run through them to give an insight into some of these, which may help in the short and long term.

1. Use Pre-season


This is a great time to learn more about the effects of player instructions and test them in games that are uncompetitive, meaning it won’t have a big effect on the coming season as it will give time to make any amendments.

2. Extended Highlights


To know if everything is working or at least coming together, it’s advisable to not rely solely on the goals that your team score. Seeing how chances are created and if players’ are managing with the assigned instructions, general match play is a great way to gauge this. Once you’re happy or confident with how things are working, you can settle back to your original settings for match viewing.

3. Take Notes


In addition to point 2, make some notes of what you’re seeing. This isn’t just for things that you may not be working, list the positives too. Using notes you’ve made to make improvements will help refine and perfect the player instructions or even your team tactic instructions, so it’s a win/win situation, really!

Closing Thoughts


Hopefully, the above will assist you all in this area of the game, which can really allow you to personalise how your team plays on an individual level and as a group. If you have any further questions, feel free to reach out on my Twitter profile - DP-FM.

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FM Blog | FM23: How to Set Up Tactical Player Instructions on Football Manager
How to Set Up Tactical Player Instructions on Football Manager
With the tactical player instructions, you can really customise and get creative with the tendencies each player carries out on Football Manager.
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