New Football Manager 2014 Player Roles

FM14 New Player Roles; Enganche, Shadow Striker, Regista, False Nine + More!

Football Manager 2014 Tactics New Player Roles

One of the major changes to the new edition of Football Manager is the massive overhaul to the Football Manager Tactics system. Together with the complete overhaul to how tactics are being created and how you set player instructions and team instructions we have been introduced to 8 new player roles in Football Manager 2014 in additional to the existing ones.

Although some of the new Football Manager 2014 player roles and positions will not be familiar to many of our younger audience and FM players, these player roles have been around almost since the inception of the sport. Some of the new player roles, such as the half back and enganche could be described as traditional roles.

In this brief guide to the new Football Manager 2014 tactics player roles we will look at the new positions in FM14 and some player recommendations for these positions. The 8 new player roles in FM14 is: The limited full back, half back, complete wing back, regista, enganche, shadow striker, wide target man and false nine.

The players I have recommended for each player role are only as a guideline and comparison for you. Some of them you will not be able to get as they are loyal to their clubs, but you can look them up in the game and search for similar players to give you much wider range of players to scout. To fully utilize these player roles, you might need to used some preferred formations in order to make any success of them, in terms of letting them get the required space to bloom or not be overshadowed by a “similar” player role.

FM14 Player Role: Half Back (HB)

FM14 Player role Half back

The first up we like to discuss is the half back.
The halfbacks of days gone by would be amazed to see today’s halfbacks in action as the position of old has certainly changed a
lot. In the 1920’s through the 1960’s the Half Back would traditionally be a #4 or a #6 player (When teams numbered the players positions by numbers 1-11.

The position faded out somewhat during the following decades only to find a resurrection in the late 90s with France and Patrick Vieira utilizing that role.
Obviously it worked for them as they lifted the 1998 World Cup and 2000 European Championship Cup trophy.

The player role half back, is typically a player who will find themselves supporting both their defence and their attack by positioning themselves to hold the midfield. Stamina is the most important attribute for this position as the player will find themselves covering a lot of the pitch, but his positioning and defensive capabilities will be as highly important.

Many teams or nations will call this player “The General” as they exercise full control of the field. Finding a player that can hold up the ball and pass it around effectively between defense and offense should be fairly easy to do on Football Manager 2014.

Half Back – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Half back player attributes
Player Recommendations for the Half Back role:

Players I would look for for the half back player role are:

Victor Wanyama, Southampton (22), €17Mill
Geoffrey Kondogbia, Monaco (20), €7,5Mill
Marouane Fellaini, Man Utd (25), €31,5Mill
Etienne Capoue, Tottenham (25), €8,75Mill
Paul Pogba, Juventus (20), €14Mill

FM14 Player Role: Limited Full Back (LFB)

FM14 Player role Limited Full back

The Football Manager 2014 player role Limited Full back is a position that seems to have gone from today’s game, especially in English football. However, on closer scrutiny it seems to be more related to national playing styles rather than a global change as several nations still prefer using these roles in their playing formations.

In the English Premier League there are certainly not many Limited Full Back’s left, much to the apparent annoyance of English fans who see Glen Johnson and Kyle Walker taking off down the wings leaving their defending team-mates alone at the rear.
Even these days if you were do a search for the top 10 best Full Backs, it will list all those that score goals, cross or are excellent at attacking. Ask any older football fans and they will give you lists of 100’s of older full backs who would never dream of going much further than the half way line.

Finding a competent Limited Full Back may be a little trickier in Football Manager 2014, you will need to look for the likes of Andy Wilkinson or just think of Stoke, when it comes grasping the tactics part of the position. The limited full back role is most often used when playing with two flat full backs is a basic 4-4-2 formation.

The Limited Full back will normally hold his position and is often used in the lower leagues when going route one launching crosses from deep onto a (flank) target man. His primary player attribute is tackling.

Limited Full Back – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Limited Full back player attributes
Player Recommendations for the Limited Full Back role:

Players I would look for for the limited full back player role are:

Andy Wilkinson, Stoke (28), €2.6Mill
Domenico Criscito, Zenit (26), €19,25Mill
Micah Richards, Man City (25), €9Mill
Chris Smalling, Man Utd (23), €10,75Mill
Marcus Rojo, Sporting (23), €2,9Mill
Ben Mee, Burnley (23), €1,8Mill

FM14 Player Role: Complete Wing Back

FM14 Player role Complete Wing back

With the demise of the Full Back position and the introduction of even more 3 men defence tactics the complete wing back player role is becoming the most coveted position, especially in the EPL. The ability to tackle in this position seems secondary to the ability to run at great speed, dribble and cross the ball.

As more clubs copy the Brazilian style of play, with 3 central defenders and 2 Wing backs we can certainly look to their nation for some great up and coming players. We already have some in the EPL today, and I would think of Rafael when I think of a complete wing back.

Be careful playing with 2 complete wing backs though (right and left) if you are not confident of your central defenders as they will need to drop into those wider positions to defend, you can certainly get caught out on counter attacking, because of the available space to exploit behind the complete wing back, when he’s attacking.

Similar to the ordinary wing back but also in difference to that particular player role, the complete wingback will be even more attacking and would need even more stamina and attacking capabilities in order to succeed.

Complete Wing Back – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute Complete wingback
Player Recommendations for the Complete Wing Back role:

Players I would look for for the Complete Wing Back player role are:

Rafael, Man Utd (23), €24Mill
Philip Lahm, Bayern Munich (29), €23,5Mill
Gino Peruzzi, Catania (21), €14,75Mill
Konstantin Rausch, Stuttgart (23), €3Mill
Davide Santon, Newcastle (22), €6Mill

FM14 Player Role: Regista (RGA)

FM14 Player role Regista

This is probably my favourite position in the game, an aggressive deep-lying playmaker. Back in the older days, the player role Regista would typically be the #8 shirt position. Its a very popular position in Italian football with Andrea Pirlo being the most famous servant of this player role.

The registas are not usually known for their tackling prowess though, as these players tend to come from deep in their own halves and possess remarkable passing skills. Operating from behind the registas will orchestrate the game, setting the tempo as they go and dictating play. In Italian regista actual means Director.

As some players get on years we find them moving from a Trequartista position into the Regista position. Paul Scholes, Xavi, Xabi
Alonso are also prime examples of this player role.

In Football Manager 2014, Playing this role, is not considered a defensive-minded approach as the player will look for opportunities to set up attacks or hold up the ball until players becomes available up in front of him. The FM14 registas will use their creativity and anticipation to look for openings to pass the ball.

Regista – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute Complete wingback
Player Recommendations for the Regista role:

Players I would look for for the Regista player role are:

Tom Huddlestone, Hull (26), €6,75Mill
Morgan Schneiderlin, Southampton (23), €10,75Mill
Sergio Busquets, Barcelona (24), €33,5Mill
Branco Van Den Boomen, Ajax (17), €53K
Andile Jali, Ajax (23), €4.7Mill

FM14 Player Role: Enganche (EG)

FM14 Player Role Enganche

The Football Manager 2014 player role enganche is widespread used in Argentina where its named from. Known in English as the “Hook”, a ¾ position, that operates between midfield and Aattack. The Enganche differece from the Trequartista position as the Hook stays in their position and does not roam from it, whereas the Trequartista has full roaming opportunities.

The player role Enganche is often the team’s creator of opportunities, becoming the pivot point or hinge pin of the tactic, if you take away the pivot pin it will all collapse. Pace and acceleration are not as important here as the player will not move around much.

Often this player will be described as the master of the “one touch”, knocking the ball on quickly or distributing the ball
quickly. Switching play to the flanks is a speciality of this player. The playing style of Andres Iniesta is what we are looking for, for this player role, as he will need excellent ball control, good first touch and excellent vision on what’s going on around him.

For me, I like to have the option with these players of having a decent long shot on them, as sometimes they will find
themselves in space and have the opportunity to have a crack at goal.

Enganche – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute Enganche
Player Recommendations for the Enganche role:

Players I would look for, for the Enganche player role are:

Toni Kroos, Bayern Munich (23), €22,5Mill
Hiroshi Kiyotake, Nürnberg (23), €5,5Mill
Ganso, Sao Paulo (23), €4Mill
Ander Herrera, Ajax (23), €17Mill
Kevin De Bruyne, Chelsea (22), €11.25Mill

FM14 Player Role: Flank Forward / Wide Target Man (WTM)

FM14 Player Role Wide Target Man

The Football Manager 2014 player role Flank Forward or Wide Target Man is a very useful and very often overlooked position.
The flank forward is a wide target man utilized against a smaller or weaker full back, and can operate either in the forward or attacking midfielder position, described as (FRL/AMRL).

Ideally the player can hold the ball up long enough to distribute to a team mate or knock on to another player arriving in attack. The player role of Wide Target Man may not always be a tall player, depending on the opposite full back. It could be a fast player with good ball control or excellent passing skills. In the English Premier League this would normally be a tall player. However, in Spain or South America it would be a small fast player.

When I thought of this position I immediately thought of Edin Dzeko who seems to fit the bill perfectly, being able to hold the ball up or play it along to a fellow teammate. He also has the skills and ability to turn and take on his opponents and drive into the penalty box.

The Wide Target Man is typically a player who will play with his back against the goal similar to Andy Carrolls style of play, or even John Carew. Should you use a small player for this role we could turn our attention to Carlos Tevez. A good wide Target man possesses great off the ball, strength and heading.

Wide Target Man – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute Wide Target Man
Player Recommendations for the Wide Target Man role:

Players I would look for, for the Wide Target Man player role are:

Edin Dzeko, Man City (27), €32Mill
Luuk de Jong, Gladbach (22), €3,9Mill
Andreas Cornelius, Cardiff (20), €10,75Mill
Sergio Aguero, Man City (25), €52Mill
Jonathan Pereira, Villarreal (26), €3.3Mill

FM14 Player Role: Shadow Striker

FM14 Player Role Shadow Striker

The Football Manager 2014 Player role Shadow Striker differce from a Target man as this player will keep driving forward constantly and will be the “go to” player for the side’s goalscoring opportunities.

Full of stamina this striker player role will close down defenders at every chance, covering the final third of the field looking for a loose ball or sneaking it away from a defender. Ideally he will have a deep-lying forward to support him
as he roams around the opponents half. But a good shadow striker must also possess excellent finishing skills as this player will
sometimes be used a lone striker. Personally, I like to utilize players that also have excellent teamwork attributes as they will often play one twos as they move into channels to receive the ball.

The player role of Shadow Striker was made popular by Holland with their Total Football approach to the game. Having Johan Cruyff wandering all around the opponents half, he was definitely used as a Shadow Striker.

A shadow strikers main attribute would be finishing, but would also require good aggression and determination in order to succeed.

Shadow Striker – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute Shadow Striker
Player Recommendations for the Shadow Striker role:

Players I would look for, for the Shadow Striker player role are:

Edinson Cavani, Paris SG (26), €41Mill
Falcao, Monaco (48), €48Mill
Denis Stracqualursi, Emelec (25), €225K
Jelle Vossen, Genk (24), €2,5Mill
Stevan Jovetic, Man City (23), €19Mill

FM14 Player Role: The False Nine

FM14 Player Role False Nine

There seems to be much confusion about the player role false nine, where many people think its a whole team tactic. However, its just one position played in a team, usually an attacking midfielder or advanced playmaker. Playing as the false nine, the player will drop back deep into midfield hoping to be followed by opposition defenders, which would leave space for
wingers to exploit the spaces made, if they track the false nine down. The player role false nine will create a decisioning problem for the opposite defenders; should they hold their position and leave him space, or track him down and leave space for others to exploit.

Ideally the false nine player will have excellent dribbling skills as he comes back deep to collect the ball and bring
to back forward again. This player role is originally credited to Roma, where Francisco Totti utilized the role to the fullest.
In the previous seasons, Barcelona and Spain have made the false nine player role very popular. Obviously Lionel Messi is adapted superbly for this role and that’s who we should think of when dicussing this player role.

Arsenal have also made some recent success with it as well, where Robin Van Persie would be used within this position, leaving Theo Walcott with space to cut inside or move into channels. The false nine would not always need excellent finishing skills, which gives us some excellent choices to look at. However, I would look for players that do have decent finishing skills as well
instead of relying on your wingers and other midfielder players to score goals. The false nines primary key player attribute is dribbling.

False Nine – Key Player Attributes
FM14 Player attribute False Nine
Player Recommendations for the False Nine role:

Players I would look for, for the False Nine player role are:

Iker Muniain, Athletic (20), €12Mill
Alen Halilovic, Dinamo (17), €5,25Mill
Juan Mata, Chelsea (25), €35,5Mill
Rafinha, Celta (Barcelona) (20), €2Mill
Diego, Wolfsburg (28), €8,5Mill

FMReporter Avatar

This Article was written by Vic Posher

Vic Posher is the owner of
Vic has been around the FM and CM scene since its inception.
You can find Vic most days talking about or playing the Football Manager series while following his real life passion Queens Park Rangers who he has followed since 1968.