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FM 2013 Tactics Review: Ryan’s Juventus 3-5-2

The time has finally come for the last post of the FM 2013 Tactics review series, I hope you have enjoyed our reviews so far. Remember that you can, after reading the analysis, download the tactic if the results and the review are good enough to convince you. This time we take a look at a 3-5-2 tactic that was sent to us by Ryan Daly, who has used it with Italian champions Juventus. Before going into the analysis, let’s recap the testing procedure for those who don’t know all about it by now:

We install the tactic and use it through pre-season plus six league matches with Spurs. Then we watch each match closely, see what happens and come up with the best review we’re capable of. We will also keep track of various statistics in order to be able to compare the essential numbers between this and other tactics that have been or will be analysed. It is more or less like a benchmarking tool for FM 2013 tactics.

Now let’s what I noticed while taking Ryan’s FM 2013 tactic through our test:


1 ryan fm 2013 tactic formation

The formation is a 3-5-2 with three centre backs, all with ball-playing defender role but the middle one with cover duty, a deep lying playmaker with defend duty, a flat four in the middle with two supporting wingers, an attacking central midfielder and a support midfielder. The two up front have different roles, one is a target man and the other is a poacher, with different duties as well.

Team Instructions

2 ryan fm 2013 team instructions

The tactic employs a balanced style with attacking strategy, shorter passing and a conservative approach when it comes to creative freedom and roaming. One thing I would note is that it doesn’t use counter attack or the offside trap even though both would seem indicated given the shape of the team and the positioning of the defensive line.

Average Positions

3 ryan fm 2013 tactic average positions

The average positions show a fairly compact outfit, the back three cover the central area very well with the help of the defensive midfielder while the wingers are forced to cover all of the flanks both upfront and at the back. The two central midfielders have slightly different positions, in line with their duties, while the target man striker is the one that drops a little deeper in order to link up play.


4 ryan fm 2013 tactic defending

Things seemed to work fairly well in defence, I was a bit worried that we would suffer on the flanks but that wasn’t the case really. The screen shot above shows the two wingers acting more like wing backs, covering the flanks in defence, the middle centre back comes out to close down the ball carrier while the other two stick to the line in front of the penalty area. The three central midfielders all contribute to the defensive effort. The DMC is slightly out of position in this screen shot, he is the one that usually does most of the closing down in our own third but this time he was tricked by the opponents’ passing.


5 ryan fm 2013 tactic attacking

The thing I liked the most about this tactic is that it brings plenty of bodies forward when attacking, while leaving enough men behind to deal with counter attacks. The screen shot above shows how one of our typical attacks evolved, with the ball being played to the flank (right flank in this case) and then the winger trying to pick out one of the five men we had in the penalty area. In this case the move was rewarded with a goal, Lennon crossed it perfectly and Dembele powered it in with a diving header.

So, basically we had six men in attack most of the times while the other four were taking care of the rearguard.


6 ryan fm 2013 tactic results

The results were good overall, could have been even better with a bit less bad luck as we missed a penalty kick and quite a few chances at Sunderland. The match against Chelsea was fairly even, although the Blues had most of the ball possession, but we failed to capitalise on our chances.


Goals scored: 11 (1.83 per game)

Goals conceded: 6 (1 per game)

Shots on target for: 7.83 per game

Shots on target against: 2.16 per game

Clear cut chances for: 1.16 per game

Clear cut chances against: 0.33 per game

Half chances for: 2.5 per game

Half chances against: 1.5 per game

Ball possession average: 49.16%

The numbers are good overall, the only team that created clear cut chances against us was Swansea. However, we did concede a fairly big number of half chances but we created quite a few ourselves. The most impressive number is the shots on target ratio while possession took a big hit against Chelsea when we had just 36 percent.

Check out our FM 13 Tactics Index to see how this tactic compares to the other FM 2013 tactics we’ve tested.


Decent results and stats.

Effective on counter attacks, despite the missed instruction.

Plenty of bodies in attack, which means plenty of options as well. The screen shot below shows Dembele, the left side CM, having two great options to pass from just inside the penalty area. He chose Bale, the left winger, and the Welsh Wizard scored.

7 plenty of bodies in attack

Too many long shots for my taste, possession is often squandered with unlikely efforts from distance.

The centre backs often chose to play unnecessary long balls, as shown in the screen shot below. Dawson had no less than three team mates unmarked and close by but instead he chose to fire a long ball towards Adebayor, giving away the possession to the opponents. That happened too many times while testing this tactic.

8 mindless long balls

Suggested Tweaks

I would restrict the shots from distance for the four midfielders or at least for most of them, unless you have extraordinary shooters.

I would change the passing style for the centre backs from “mixed” to shorter in order to avoid them choosing to play unnecessary long balls.

I would activate counter attacks in team instructions.

FM 2013 Tactic Download

Download this FM 2013 tactic by clicking on the image below:

download link

After downloading the tactic follow these simple steps to install it in FM 2013:

1. Put the downloaded file into this folder: Documents>Sports Interactive>Football Manager 2013>tactics

2. Start your game and go to your team’s tactics screen.

3. Click on the little arrow located to the right of your starting tactic name, move your mouse cursor over “archived tactics” and select this tactic from the menu.

I hope you enjoyed this review and I’m looking forward to your comments. We won’t be taking any more entries from you at this point as this is the last FM 13 tactics review, we deserve a little break before FM 14 ;)

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Nick Sundin
9 years ago

Seems very similar, no identical to this tactic which appeared a long time ago

Ryan Daly
Ryan Daly
9 years ago

I actually sent in the wrong tactic here, the one I was supposed to send in is a little different

9 years ago

Fantastic series of articles! Always look forward to seeing these!

Cristi Cristian
9 years ago

please Ryan send it here…to see how it works:)

Gaurav Chaddah
Gaurav Chaddah
9 years ago

Seems a good looking tactic, the wing backs have really came about this year.

Thanks Johnny and Darren for a great series which has kept us all entertained I’m sure on a Saturday morning :)

9 years ago

Where do you find the average positions screen?

9 years ago
Reply to  Johnny Karp


8 years ago

You still taking requests? i’ve got a 4-3-3 counter attacking tactic which could be good, i just need to find a tester

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