First of all, we would like to wish everybody a happy new year and hope that 2024 is a fine year for all of our readers.
Our first article of 2024 is a tactic testing one, putting the FM 343 XABI ALONSO BAYER LEVERKUSEN DEL MAGICOMONTA by Magicomonta to the test (Sorry, I am not shouting at you, the creator of the tactic used capital letters to name it!)
This tactic intrigued me, as I am a big fan of how Die Werkself plays, so I tried it on my current personal save, and it was superb. I then decided to test it with the original Everton squad from this season. Once again, it produced impressive results.
How is the tactic set up?
The tactical set-up is a 343, with a mentality of positive. In goal is a goalkeeper on defend mentality. In front of the last line of defence are two central defenders flanking a ball-playing defender, with all three on defend mentality.
The system operates with a wing-back on the team’s left side, using the automatic mentality, while on the other flank is a complete wing-back on attack. Both players are crucial to the success of the system.
In the centre of the pitch are a deep lying playmaker and a central midfielder, both on support mentality.
In attack, an advanced playmaker on attack duty is on the left flank, while on the right is an inside forward on attack duty. The main attacking threat is a complete forward with an attacking mentality.
It seems strange that the system actually suits the current Everton team, but it worked really well with the available players.
How did the tactic perform?
The team was predicted to finish in 12th place in the Premier League table but qualified for the Champions League by finishing fourth place. The 72-point tally is actually the joint most that the Toffees have ever achieved in the Premier League era.
The team were the fourth-highest-scoring team in the English top flight. However, at the other end of the pitch, 52 goals were conceded, as the team had the worst defensive record in the league’s top seven.
They had the joint-second-best home record over the season. Meanwhile, the one minor weakness seems to have been that it isn’t a great tactic for away games.
One thing that sticks out is how strongly the team finished the season, as they picked up 13 points from their final five league games. The record was the best of any team in the Premier League that season.
The team’s record in the cup competitions was poor, as they exited the FA Cup in the fourth round against Manchester City while also exiting the Carabao Cup in the third round against Manchester United.
Who were the top-performing players using this tactic?
As with all good tactical set-ups, this tactic brought the best out of many of the players, with many performing better than I have seen before on previous saves.
Who picked up the highest average rating over the season?
The player with the highest average season rating was, unsurprisingly, star striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who picked up an average rating of 7.27, which is not the highest I have seen DCL earn.
On-loan winger Arnaut Danjuma also performed well, with an average season rating of 7.17, while central midfielder Amadou Onana enjoyed one of his best seasons, picking up a rating of 7.13.
Right wing-back Nathan Patterson was not far behind Onana, earning a season average of 7.12. Central midfielder Idrissa ‘Gana’ Gueye picked up a respectable rating of 7.08, with centre-back Ben Godfrey getting a strong season rating of 7.01.
Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford didn’t have a bad season either, gaining a record of 7.00 over the season.
Who were the top goalscorers in the team?
The top goalscorers were unsurprisingly the front three, as Calvert-Lewin scored 26 goals in all competitions. His 24 league goals made him the second-highest scorer in the Premier League.
Widemen Jack Harrison and Arnaut Danjuma each scored 12 goals during the campaign, with Onana scoring an impressive ten goals and Patterson scoring eight times.
Who were the players with the most assists?
The most productive players for the team were Patterson, who managed 16 assists, with Harrison creating 15 goals, while Danjuma also made eight goals for his teammates.
Calvert-Lewin was not just a goalscorer in the season, as he produced seven assists, with Gueye also creating six goals for his teammates.
What is my conclusion on this tactic?
Since playing FM24, I am not sure I have enjoyed a tactic more than this one, as it is highly entertaining to watch. If you have the right players, this offers you great entertainment.
However, it is not just an entertaining tactic but also one that brings results, as shown in the tactic testing. The one criticism I have of this tactic would be that it is not great in away games.
In my personal save, I have used another tactic in the big away games, as this tactic is not the most stable away from home.
I would say that this is not a significant issue, as the tactic creator doesn’t claim to have created a plug-and-play tactic. Like any tactic, it sometimes requires tweaking. Overall, though, I would highly recommend this tactic.
Have you ever used FM 343 XABI ALONSO BAYER LEVERKUSEN DEL MAGICOMONTA? If you have, let us know your thoughts on the tactic via our socials