Managing Milan is a very fun game. With a squad with an average age of 30, as manager you will need to rebuild one of the greatest clubs in the world and bring through the next generation of milan superstars to replace the ageing players that have served the club so well. there is no room for sentiment. But is there anything more rewarding in FM than grooming your academy graduates into international footballers capable of challenging for europes top prizes? what better team to do that with than the mighty milan? this is a very fun and long lasting game that i would recommend to both seasoned professionals of FM and the Rookies making thier first steps into management.
Dida might be getting on a bit now, but he is still a safe pair of hands between the sticks and will do a job for the first couple of seasons no problem.
Full-backs Cafu and Oddo will need to push down the right flank, and cross from the by-line as often as possible, which is not an easy task for the 37-year-old Brazilian and Oddo will be first choice when 100 per cent fit. On the opposite flank there will be 39-year-old Paolo Maldini, who can guarantee defensive quality but may struggle to deliver good crosses. His physical stats are poor to say the least and Jankulovski or Kaladze would be a better choice. I recommend using Oddo and Kaladze for the RWB and LWB. However these are the positions that will need the most urgent attention in the transfer market. For CB go with the ever reliable Nesta and Maldini against less mobile forwards with Bonera replacing Maldini against faster strikers or Maldini's lack of pace could be exposed.
In midfield, Andrea Pirlo will be the playmaker who dictates the tempo of the action, but can get easily marked out of the game if he is deployed in the thick of the action in a crowded midfield, so should be used just in front of the back four in the DM position to spray balls out wide to the full backs and long to the striker. The opposition will be trying to close him down so it is essential that the other midfielders work hard to close the other team down and move intelligently to create space. It is essential that the two CM are good tacklers and distributors of the ball to keep the midfield ticking over. These players will win the ball and then push forward when in possession to support the attacck. Ambrosini and Gatusso fill these requirements and really boss the middle of the park against all but the top opposition, where Gatusso should be assigned a slightly more defensive role. Brocchi supplies adequate back up but can be replaced, the same with Emerson, but his lack of pace could hinder his ability to really get a foothold in the game.
In the more Attacking midfield roles, Kakà and Clarence Seedorf will have the duty of creating openings for the striker as well as getting into the box themselves and should be set to always try for long shots and through balls and Kaka, in particular, to try to dribble into the box and create openings. With Kaka's pace and Seedorf's stamina they will also be expected to drop back when not in possession and help out in the centre of the park. Brocchi, as well as providing cover for CM can cover in the more attacking roles too. Gourcuff is the other cover here, the French starlet is definitely more skilled than his Italian colleague, however Milan may miss some power in the middle of the park.
quote Although it may look strange, This is the ideal formation for Milan which utilises their strengths, which predominantly are in the middle of the park with Kaka, Pirlo, Gatusso, Ambrosini, Seedorf. This formation can make use of all of them and creates a balance between defence and attack. With this formation there are always five in attack and five in defence at any one time. It is essential that you have a prolific striker as the spearhead of the team and the wing backs are key to this formation working. On the down side, teams will put 10 men behind the ball and in can be difficult to break the opposition down. In this case the mentality can be set more defensive and play on the counter. Against 4-4-2 opposition with fast wingers and forwards the WBR & WBL should be changed to LB & RB.
quoteAbbiati or Storari should be used as sub keeper when they return from loan, with the other being sold to add more funds to the kitty. Grimi could be kept for back up or sent out on loan for another season before replacing Jankulovski. Marco Boriello can be used for back up or sold. Young CB Elia Legati has potential but is nowhere near ready for the first team and needs match time if he is to progress. So too does Lino Marzoratti, but have patience! Davide Di Gennaro, with a PA of -9 has could be a class act in a few years time.
OUT ON LOAN
quoteDavide Ancelotti looks like a promising midfielder and should be introduced to first team duties slowly in the first season where circumstances permit. (cup games, injuries, lesser teams etc.) Emanuele Orlandi, Willy Aubameyang, Francesco Mauri and Mitja Novinic should all be kept an eye on and could develop into decent players for the first team.
quoteThe team is ok for the first season and has a lot of depth but is VERY old. I would suggest replacing Cafu with Di Silvestre and Emerson with Flamini. (Both on free transfers at the start of the second season) these would be great purchases. Investing in youth players like Tuia and Corradini would also be wise for nominal fees. You then have a decent amount to spend on any other areas that you feel need strengthening.
Aleksander Kolarov, Chiellini and Zambrotta should be high priority targets for the WB positions should you feel these areas need further strenghtening. For the midfield department Angelo Palombo would do a job here. Another AM would do no harm and Lulinha would be a good investment.
Thanks for reading, this is my first guide and i hope this will be of some help to people.
Experiment with the formation, the key to serie a is mixing up the tactics and being very tactically aware. have at least 3 different formations that you can switch to in a game for different situations. (normal, attacking and defensive etc.)
dont be too hasty in getting rid of the older players. they are the ones with expierience and can be very useful in turning games from draws into wins and tutoring the youngsters. serie a is not the most physical league so the physical stats are not as important as in the premiership. However by the same token, players with strength and pace in abundance will really shine and it is up to you as manager to balance technical ability and physical ability across the team as you see fit.
make sure the wing backs are fast otherwise you will get caught out at the back.
be patient with youngsters. most italian players peak later in thier careesrs. Just look at Materazzi, Toni etc.