Football Manager 2017 hasn’t changed that much on the training front from Football Manager 16, at least visually. There’s been lots of fine tuning done under the hood of the game to a lot of things though, those changes include both for the user and the AI. Some of those tweaks are;
Attribute training, PPM training, position training, newgen training and individual tactical familiarity training.
The AI should now be smarter than it was in FM16 (for those that existed) when using the above methods of training. The user should also notice feedback has been improved significantly too and the advice given on all training aspects no longer seems out-of-place. No doubt we will see this improved again next year but for now it’s been a good start.
Some of the things mentioned above are actually new for Football Manager 2017 or have been greatly expanded upon. Let’s take a closer look at these and see what they actually do.
Position Training– Redesigned
This has seen major work done on it for FM17, a complete overhaul in fact and is probably the single biggest training change we’ve seen for many years. The AI now tries to anticipate a player’s decline and suggest a new position. It’s not a straightforward case of saying this player is getting slower so he needs to changed from a striker to a defender, the algorithms used are much more complex than that. The idea is that the AI looks at a player age and his attributes then gives you feedback based on what they think is better for the players long-term future to keep getting the best out of him and thus checks to see if there is an opportunity to re-train that player into a deeper or more central position. This only occurs however if the player scores higher for the new role than his current role.
So as an example – You’ve got a winger whose attributes will deteriorate (mostly physical, especially the quickness related attributes, eg. pace, acceleration, agility, balance, and some technicals such as dribbling). The AI will see this and then suggest him to be re-trained to a more central role if he scores high enough for the new role compared to his current one.
On FM16 this kind of advice was seen far too late and you usually got messages/indications after the decline had already happened. Then you’d have spent the next six to nine months training the player in his new position. But now SI are trying to give us that advice much earlier before the decline happens so you can re-train him before hand and hopefully save time. This training change will make a massive different to how AI managers develop the older players now too. The AI should now act more logically in regard to the development of these players, something which many of us users have wanted in the game for a long time, a more reactive AI.
There’s no hard and fast numbers for when this is triggered but it is mainly down to the players peak ages and the future decline training gets checked at around the players 30’s as an average.
Individual Player Tactical Familiarity – NEW
This is totally new for Football Manager 2017 and can be accessed in a player’s profile by going to the development tab followed by the tactics one.
You should then be on the screen above where you can see individual player tactical familiarity down the right hand side. The bars when fully coloured mean it’s fully learnt for that bar. Like in the above the player is 100% fluid for the formation I use but still has some way to go for mentality and a few others. The player above is also on the same level as the majority of my squad. If he wasn’t his bars would be more like this;
As you can see Edwin Valencia has two colours on his bar, this is because the light shade of green is his personal development and the darker shade is where the current squad is in terms of individual tactic familiarity. So you can visually see how far behind a player is compared to the players in your squad who have the current highest amounts.
Despite the name (individual tactical familiarity) there is no individual training option; the overall team training will have an indirect effect through overall familiarity. Instead think of it as a player’s individual understanding or how settled and accustomed he is in your current setup. When you first start the game the majority of players at the club (new signings will be lagging behind because the date they joined the club will be taken from the database and used) will all likely match the current overall familiarity. While for new players you sign it can take between 50 and 270 days depending on various factors, including but not limited to Adaptability, match-time, injuries, previous team’s tactics, etc.
Getting all the bars maxed out will take quite a bit of time for every single player as it relies on playing time, hidden attributes and staying injury free. So when looking for new players to sign it can be helpful (but not a must) to buy them from clubs who play quite similar to yourselves, as they’ll already have a high understanding to begin with.