What are Football Manager touchline shouts and why should we use them? This guide will explain how shouts work, what they actually affect and when each command should be used.
As always, this is my opinion, how I play the game and there is no one size fits all approach. Touchline team talks are widely misunderstood and shrouded in myth birthed by the community so lets begin with some basics.
Do Football Manager touchline shouts change my tactic?
Lets begin with a myth; touchline shouts change team instructions…no, no they don’t. Any guide stating as such is talking twaddle.
Shouts have absolutely no impact on your tactic, they are not used to tweak a system nor make adjustments of any kind to your tactic.
Touchline team talks alter your teams mood under various matchday pressures and are contextual to what is happening on the pitch. The term ‘team talks’ is important, think of them as such.
What do touchline team talks do?
Shouts can be used to inspire, fire up or re-focus your team. They can also make your player nervous, anxious and complacent.
They change your squads morale and body language for a short period of time, roughly ten minutes and could make or break an even affair.
Each players personality and pre-match morale will affect their response hence there is no one size fits all approach. However, some shouts are more effective than others and I have experimented a great deal in FM20 to bring you these guidelines.
Should you be reading this guide for FM21 or even FM22, my advise is read on but experiment. Shouts have evolved over time to become more effective and they may continue to change in future editions.
Football Manager touchline shouts – Avoid these mistakes
I tend to sign professional or determined players and the guidelines below are based on this type of squad.
Lets begin with misleading shouts and when not to use them.
Asking your team to concentrate when defending a narrow lead could backfire. This will add pressure and players lacking in this hidden attribute will become nervous, overwhelmed or anxious, leading to mistakes. The left screenshot shows my players body language when 2-1 up, the right shows them overwhelmed by the concentrate feedback.
Concentrate should be used to re-focus individuals who look complacent or uninterested and applied on a player, not team basis. But be aware some players do not repond well to pressure and will become overwhelmed by this feedback. Spend time getting to know your team and understand what makes each player tick.
If none of your players are showing this type of body language the concentrate shout will do more harm than good.
To defend a lead without adding pressure I use Tighten up. This shifts your teams focus to defending but lacks the same pressure as concentrate.
I use no pressure for players displaying ‘nervous’ or ‘anxious’ body language, I would not use it as a big game strategy. Shouts deal with specific in game pressures, unless a player is looking nervous or anxious the ‘no pressure’ shout may induce complacency or even a lack of interest.
All shouts should be reactive and very much contextual to the match engine, body language and team morale. Concentrate and no pressure are a reaction to negative body language and morale, the next section is where the magic happens.
How To Turn A Game Using Shouts
Demand more, get creative and praise are my go to, game changing, Football Manager touchline shouts. They’re the most effective way to fire your team up and doing so will lead to goals and added resolve.
The aim is to inspire your team as they handle contextual match pressure, whether you’re a goal behind, struggling to score or defending a lead. Fired-up body language is by far the best reaction.
However, observe your teams morale and body language after each shout, this is the only way to learn your individual personality types and how they may react but I find great success using the shouts below.
- When defending poorly to re-focus or fire up your players.
- If level in the second-half of games you expect to win.
- Avoid for players who react poorly to pressure.
- To fashion goalscoring opportunities when level in the first-half of games you expect to win.
- Against park the bus opposition.
- Less likely to negatively affect players with poor pressure.
An example: Away to Mansfield – who play three at the back and a DMC – we have created little by the 25th minute and my players look composed. Its too soon for demand more because our lack of opportunities is down to the opposition, so I go with get creative which inspires the boys who go on to craft a brace of clear cut chances.
- Spur a team on to score more goals at the end of both halves.
- Only use when winning and playing well.
- If mis-used will cause complacency and confusion.
An example: 1-0 up away from home my team are playing well and showing composed or motivated body language. Praise then fires the majority of my players up for a 10 minute period of domination and the second goal. Just because your team are winning and showing positive body language does not mean shouts should be discarded. Take advantage while you’re on top! Remember; fired-up players create chances and defend doggedly.
- Shift your players focus to attack in the final 30 minutes.
- Used when searching for a goal.
- This does not alter your tactic, only your teams focus and priorities.
- Shift your teams focus to defending.
- I use in the final 10 minutes of a game when defending a lead.
- More attacking minded players may become frustrated.
- Used for one purpose, to combat low morale and boost spirits.
- Can inspire players with low morale.
In summary touchline shouts do not change tactics, they alter your teams mood under various matchday pressures and as such are contextual. Shouts can have a positive impact; firing up, focusing or inspiring your players to victory. They can also be negative causing complacency, confusion and anxiety.
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You can inspire your team to score using the demand more and get creative shouts or praise when ahead to maintain pressure. Push forward should be used when chasing a game and tigthen up in reverse while concentrate acts as a whip for players showing complacency and a lack of interest.
A team with confident body language may still benefit from shouts. The same rules above still apply when the score or performance are not up to scratch.
That is all for today folks, any questions or thoughts hit me in the comments. If you’d like to see shouts in action subscribe to the FMS Youtube channel and click the alert bell button to catch in game tips and follow my ‘SEADOGS CAN FLY’ series.