Tactics are our bread and butter in Football Manager 23. The game let you work on three different tactics and it’s key to finding the best ones to lead our team to victory. There are different philosophies on the matter and, as even real life shows, no single answer. In any case, one of the first decisions you need to make when starting a new game regards the relationship between players and tactics. Will you force your style on the squad or will you base your tactics on the available players? Both approaches have their pros and cons. Thanks to the possibility of preparing three tactics, you can even try to find a balance between the two.
As for the tactics themselves, the game does offer some basic ones and even guides you to create your own. Alternatively, you can also look for help from fellow managers online. There are already thousands of available options: some inspired by the likes of Klopp, Guardiola, and Conte, others just created by players. So, it’s very difficult to find the right one, either for our tastes or our squad. However, we selected seven FM 23 tactics that should fit all kinds of approaches: from Tiki Taka to Gegenpressing, from extremely offensive to more cautious approaches.
How to Install FM 23 Tactics
Installing Football Manager 23 tactics is a rather easy job. Whether you’re installing the ones from our list or others you found online, the procedure is always the same. The only difference could be found on the websites from where you download; some require you to register (for free) if you want to access the download, while others just give you free access.
Once you download the file do the following:
- copy the tactics file (it has the extension .fmf)
- paste the .fmf file into the folder “Documents\Sports Interactive\Football Manager 2023\tactics”
- start the game
- go to “Tactics”
- click on the “+” sign and select “Load Tactic”
- select the desired tactic from the list
If you use the Steam Workshop, instead of downloading the files from websites, you can directly “Subscribe” to the tactics you find in the Workshop itself. Once you are subscribed to the tactics of your choice, follow the above instructions from step 3.
The 7 Best Football Manager 23 Tactics
The first tactic is an offensive one with high intensity. This 4-3-1-2 features a very high tempo and extremely aggressive pressing. The idea is to take control of the game and force the opponents to make mistakes or throw the ball away. The downside is that defensively the team might suffer a bit. You surely need reasonably fast defenders to run back in case of long balls that go past the pressing line.
Antonio Conte is regarded as one of the cleverest managers in football. His passion and fierceness are reflected in his tactics and Joshua Daly, the creator of this mod, managed to recreate it quite well. This 3-4-3 is very solid in defense and relies on quick counter attacks and direct passes into the space behind the opponent’s defense. This tactic works very well with teams of all kinds and can be applied in all tiers. However, you might find it difficult to find reliable Wing Backs which are crucial for the success of this 3-4-3.
Video by JoshDaly
This is a tactic created to emulate Jurgen Klopp’s years at Borussia Dortmund. It requires very high intensity and commitment from the players but the results are great. It’s based on patient possession with short passages and waiting to find the right moment to strike. When in defense, the focus is on winning back the ball as quickly as possible and striking back with fast counter attacks. The key to finding the balance in this tactic is the pair of Central Midfielders that need to have a high Work Rate and reasonable speed.
This is a rather new approach to football tactics that can be quite useful if our team lacks a good striker. Even so, this is the most offensive tactic you’ll find on our list. The mentality is set to Very Attacking and features a high tempo with short, patient passes to work the ball into the box for dangerous finishing. You probably won’t have the best defense in the league but it won’t be too bad either, especially if you have a strong Defensive Midfielder to help while out of possession.
This is the tactic that led Barcelona to win three La Liga and two Champions League in 4 years and proclaimed Guardiola one of the best managers in the world. Perfectly reproduced to give the same feeling of relentless short passing, patiently waiting for the right opportunity to score. The original Tiki Taka works wonders if you have Iniesta, Xavi, and Messi on your team. However, it can still prove efficient with teams of all kinds. Provided you find clever midfielders and Central Defenders with good passing skills, you can use this tactic with any team without having to tweak it.
Video by Football Made Simple
This is the most defensive FM 23 tactic on the list. It features a very robust defense with 3 Central Defenders, 1 Defensive Midfielder, and 2 Wing Backs. It has a Balanced approach to the match with the two strikers pressing high when not in possession while the rest of the team occupies its own half. On the contrary, when in possession, the Wing Backs are crucial for creating occasions with crosses or space for midfielders to attack. This balanced tactic should work very well with any team. It can also be used to secure the result in tough matches when scoring first.
This is a classic, offensive 4-4-2 that, as the title suggests, could be particularly effective if you’re playing the underdog. It requires a high work rate and stamina from the players since it has a very high level of intensity. Players are also invited to press high but caring not to leave too much space behind the defenders’ backs. In possession, there aren’t many instructions aside from playing at maximum tempo and working the ball into the box. Depending on the quality and characteristics of your team, you may want to tweak this a bit. Aside from that, this could be a good tactic to bring small teams to glory.
These tactics should provide you with either ready-made strategies for your team or good bases to create your own. Of course, for most teams, you won’t be able to use these tactics without tweaking something here and there. However, this is part of the beauty of FM 23. As a recommendation, make good use of the summer friendly matches to experiment with some of these tactics. Observe which ones your players respond to the best and which ones are closer to the idea of football you have.