4141 Formation Guide

134567
TheRev
293 posts Sunday League Hero
edited October 2015
As with my original 4141 guide for FUT 14 (written under my previous handle on the old forums, RevENPAtcheson), I want to begin with my usual disclaimer: I am emphatically not an elite player. I’m really pretty average. I’m quite not sure where I stack up yet in 16, but so far I've beaten the AI on Legendary and I'm winning more than I'm losing in online play. But more elite-level opponents can, and do, almost always outplay me.

So…this guide is NOT me saying, “I R awesome, here’s how U B awesome 2.” This is me, like in 14, offering commentary on a formation that has helped me to get the most mileage out of my frankly modest FIFA talent by using a formation that plays to my preferences/strengths: namely short, rapid 1-2 passing on attack, and clogging the central midfield lanes on defense.

Also, another similarity to the 14 guide: I wouldn’t recommend a player to you without having tried them at some point, so this guide won’t contain too many big names. So far, the teams I have created are a Liga NOS (Portugal) team, a Russian League team, a Bundesliga/La Liga nonrare gems hybrid, and a Spain/Russian League hybrid built around a pack-pulled Santi Cazorla. Because BPL players especially are overpriced early on in any FUT cycle, I probably haven’t tried your favorite player—or many of the most popular ones—but I can recommend you some great hidden gems.

Before I get into the meat of the guide, I'd like to again thank @Thatoe for picking up the torch for this formation in 15 and writing the guide for that edition, as well as @JoeAVFC1986 for writing the guide for the game's beta. I recognize that some of the requests in my preliminary thread for this guide included items like screenshots of passing and dribbling stats from games, and I'll try to provide those sorts of resources over the next few days, but I wanted to get published what I already have written and ready to get folks started.

Why use the 4141?

In a sentence, because you can get the most mileage out of playing with two banks of four if you know what you're doing with the two guys operating in front of and between those banks--the CDM and the striker.

In 14, I believed that the 4141 was most dependent on the CDM’s skillset because you are operating with a single pivot player as opposed to the double pivot system of the 352, 4411, 4231, 433 defend, etc. Like the 451 CM, the CDM must act as both a holder and a link-up passer. Even more importantly, he must do that while remaining in position at all times, to be able sit between the CB's and the attack to both screen the CB's and act as an outlet to maintain possession for the attack. This rules out ANY (and I do mean ANY) midfielder with high AWR, and even a CDM with M/H work rates has to almost always be told in the team tactics page to stay back on attacks, lest they fancy themselves a CAM and push annoyingly frequently into the attack.

All of that is true, but I now believe that the striker’s skillset is just as important to the 4141’s success. Because pace—while still important—isn’t the be-all, end-all it was in previous editions, it doesn’t do to have a one-dimensional striker anymore. Simply having a slow, lumbering physical tank like Fernando Llorente or Luca Toni in the middle and whipping in crosses to him isn’t enough for a one-striker side. This isn't to say you can't have a target man up top, and in fact fielding a target man can be very successful, but a target man needs to be able to do more than shoot and head the ball. Likewise, a pacy—but smaller—striker like Giovinco or Menez who relies completely on sprint speed and acceleration will just get trampled underfoot by just about any center back. The striker in the 4141 must be able to do it all—hold-up play, sprinting, incisive passing, shooting (preferably with either foot), and heading.

With all of that being said, I’ll start with my position-by-position analysis, beginning at striker.

The Striker

I said this in the 14 edition of my guide as well, but the one requirement every lone striker needs now in 16, especially with the long-overdue nerfing of pace, is size. Every time someone starts with Dybala as a lone striker, an angel loses its wings. Second to this (imo) are skills conducive to effective hold-up play. In the 4141, all five of your midfielders will track back to defend, so your striker’s hold-up play—and ability to shovel off passes to your creators behind him—needs to be good. While many of the expensive high-end strikers have such skillsets (Ibra, Muller, Benzema etc), you can also get players with the same skillsets on the cheap with guys like Josip Ilicic (6’2” with 80 short passing), Stefan Jovetic (6’0” with 82 short passing), and Alexander Meier (6’5” with 88 strength and 78 short passing).

Work rates tend not to matter a ton, really. I’ve tried H/H and L/L strikers (and many in between), and even H/H strikers manage to stay in position as the tip of the spear. And truthfully, pace doesn’t have to matter either. I average almost a goal per game with IF Slimani, and his 73 pace makes him positively glacial compared to Aubameyang.

Key stats: Finishing, Positioning, Strength, Ball Control, Short Passing, Jumping, Heading

Additional examples: IF Islam Slimani, Aduriz, Artem Dzyuba, Max Kruse, Mevlut Erdinc

Recommended chemistry styles: Hawk, Finisher, Deadeye

The Central Midfielders

In previous editions of FUT, I tended to eschew CM’s with H/H work rates because too often for me liking, they would get pulled out of position in one direction or the other and generally lacked the pace of wingers or fullbacks to recover well. In 16, though, with the aggressiveness of CDM’s in general, having one H/H CM (or even M/H, like with Bruno) can be an advantage, since they will often be able to cover for your gallivanting CDM. If you take this approach, the other CM should be a playmaker to offer a central source of creativity to take pressure off of your wingers, but if that playmaker has some defensive chops, that is a definite plus. Additionally, considering that 16 does fit in with the time-honored tradition of over-powered long shots in FUT, at least one of your CM’s should have 75+ long shots and shot power ratings.

Key Stats (playmaker): Short Passing, Long Passing, Ball Control, Dribbling, Vision, Long Shot, Shot Power

Key Stats (box-to-box): Interceptions, Standing Tackle, Sliding Tackle, Short Passing, Dribbling, Ball Control

Playmaker examples: Santi Cazorla, Adrien Silva, Danny, Parejo, Raffael, Roman Eremenko

Box-to-box examples: IF Andre Andre, Axel Witsel, Gonzalo Castro, Granit Xhaka, Bruno

Recommended chemistry styles (playmaker): Engine, Maestro, Deadeye, Artist, Sniper

Recommended chemistry styles (box-to-box): Honestly, basic. These guys have to do it all.

The Wingers

In general—and this is a preference that has been in place since FUT 13 or so—I tend to prefer wingers with at least a 3* weak foot, and preferably 4* or 5*. I find that my wingers have a much greater degree of effectiveness if my opponent is unsure whether I will keep bombing down the sideline or cut inside, something that 2* wingers really answer for my opponent. My one exception is for a winger like, say, Nicolas Gaitan, whose crossing ability is so great that when combined with a striker like IF Slimani, it is worth coping with his one-dimensionality. Whether you choose to play with inverted or traditional wingers really comes down to your striker—if you’ve got a traditional target man (like Slim), I’d go with traditional wingers. But if you have a strong passing striker (Jovetic, Benzema, Meier, etc), cutting inside with your wingers to combine with your striker is an extremely useful tactic, especially if your wingers have excellent shooting themselves—think guys like Poldi, Perisic, Schurrle, etc.

Concerning other attributes, I tend to also lean towards H/H, H/M, or M/M work rates. Low defensive work rates negate one of the unique benefits of the 4141 compared to its 433 opposite, the 433-2, which is the ability to field two-way wingers who will actually track back and aid the fullbacks in defense. I haven’t tried any of the few wingers with M/H work rates, so I can’t speak to them yet, but I would take a statistically inferior one if they were to better fit into my system.

Key Stats: Vision, Ball Control, Dribbling, Short Passing, Crossing, Curve, Agility, Balance

Examples: Juan Mata, Eduardo Salvio, Nicolas Gaitan, Yacine Brahimi, Andre Carrillo, Joaquin

Recommended chemistry styles: Catalyst, Engine, Artist. Deadeye/Sniper if an inverted winger.

The Defensive Midfielder

I remarked fairly extensively on the role of your CDM in my intro, so I won’t rehash it all here. I will only reinforce that I find the following work rates to be most effective: L/M, L/H, and not much else. I have not had as much success using medium attacking work rate CDM’s because they will get further forward, but also will not always track back with the same ferocity, and my recommendations here will reflect that preference (Edit: I accidentally said I would break this section into destroyer and playmaker sections, that was meant to be in the CM section instead. Oops). I’ll reiterate what I just said about wingers: I’ll willingly take a statistically inferior CDM if his work rates and positioning match my needs. In other words, choose your CDM well, because he is the key to success with this formation.

Key Stats: Interceptions, Standing Tackle, Sliding Tackle, Marking, Short Passing, Ball Control

Examples: Lucas Leiva, Nigel de Jong, Gary Medel, Mosquera, Ali Ghazal, Willians

Recommended chemistry styles: I’m all about Powerhouse on these guys. Sentinel works too.

The Fullbacks

Pretty standard 4atb stuff here. If my CDM is M/H, I will only have one high AWR fullback (if my CDM is L/M or L/H, I can often get away with both fullbacks having high AWR if the fullbacks have at least decent pace). Because pace is less important in 16 than previous editions, you can also get away with using bigger, more physical fullbacks if that is your preference. Your attacking fullback should have good crossing, curve, and passing stats in addition to the key stats listed.

Key Stats: Marking, Standing Tackle, Sliding Tackle, Sprint Speed, Acceleration, Dribbling

Attack-first examples: Jefferson, Igor Smolnikov, Domenico Criscito, Junior Caicara, Bernat

Defense-first examples: Maximiliano Pereira, Arbeloa, Nacho Monreal, Mario Fernandes

Recommended chemistry styles: Shadow or Basic

The Centerbacks

I tend to avoid high AWR CB’s like the plague; their positional play simply frustrates me and I find other CB’s to be easier to use, and my recommendations reflect this as well…though if you kick **** with Naldo, then by all means, go with him. As with the fullbacks, you can get away with slower CB’s this year—for me, 60 pace on a CB is adequate. After that threshold, the most important stats are pretty obvious—marking, tackling, and heading. Because I usually build from the back, I also like having at least one CB who is a decent passer.

Key Stats: Marking, Standing Tackle, Sliding Tackle, Jumping, Heading, Strength, Interceptions

Examples: Ezequiel Garay, Marcos Rojo, Gary Cahill, Maicon, Bruno Martins Indi, Serdar Tasci

Recommended chemistry styles: Anchor or Sentinel

The Goalkeeper

Your goalkeeper is constrained really only by your personal preference and your budget. It seems some keepers work better for some, and other keepers work better for others (Victor Valdes, for instance, always manages to be **** for me in every FIFA, without fail). FWIW, I tend to prioritize reflexes, diving, handling, and positioning (in that order) in my keeper. I’m less convinced that height is *as* important based on my experience with Iker Casillas this year—even with a downgrade and a height of 5’11”, he handled crosses and corner kicks fine.

Examples: Casillas, Igor Akinfeev, Andrea Consigli, Mattia Perin, Helton (dem jammy pants)

Recommended chemistry styles: Glove, Glove, and Glove.

In-Game Individual Tactics (Instructions)

I don’t claim to be an expert on these—certainly not as much as understanding how different attributes and skillsets affect the different positions—but through a fair amount of trial and error, I am fairly confident in making the following instruction recommendations for the two players not a part of a bank of four—your striker and your defensive midfielder. Everyone else does fine if left on their defaults, but depending on, say, the weak foot of your wingers, you may choose to instruct them to stay wide or to cut inside. I also instruct my wingers to always track back on defense; as I noted in the wingers section above, two-way wingers are the biggest difference between the 4141 and the 433-2, and if your wingers don’t track back, you may as well play the 433-2 to fully benefit from their advanced positioning.

Striker: Act as target man (if playing a striker with the skillset to do so), stay central
CDM: Stay back when attacking

In-Game Team Tactics

One word: possession. Click it and you’re done.

And we’re done here as well! That does it for this Ulysses-length guide. I am including four different sample teams of mine below, and of course I am more than happy to answer any of your questions as best I can. I also appreciate any respectful and constructive feedback. Thank you for reading!

Liga NOS team: http://www.futhead.com/16/squads/2439430/
Russian League: http://www.futhead.com/16/squads/2907310/
Bundesliga/La Liga nonrare gems hybrid: http://www.futhead.com/16/squads/2430703/
Spain/Russia/Argentina hybrid (eventually w/ DDG): http://www.futhead.com/16/squads/2906917/
Post edited by TheRev on

Comments

  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    Reserved for screenshots
  • Joeyalltheseven
    2388 posts Fans' Favourite
    Nice guide, I'm gonna give it a try
  • Demon
    1262 posts Professional
    finally a guide :) will give it a read, as I loved the formation for the past 2 fifas
  • Thatoe
    425 posts Sunday League Hero
    Nice write up.
    Completely agreed with the striker and the cdm being the most important players.
  • Great guide! Im also playing with a cheap team... till the prices go way down its fine with me. Van Persie, Nani and Sneijder form a magnificent triangle :smile:

    51eohs.png
  • Rob
    1215 posts EA Staff (retired)
    It's fantastic to see the return of your guide @TheRev :)
  • METH
    940 posts Semi-Pro
    Well done.

    Currently using Jovetic and like you said he can do it all!!!
    Patience is the key to this formation.
  • Xtc
    5186 posts Big Money Move
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?
  • JoeAVFC1986
    1160 posts Professional
    edited October 2015
    Not tinkered much with the 4141 as I've gone for a skill based team this year as I want to master the skill moves over the next few fifas.
    its a superb formation for possession and the guide looks great
    Really liked the suggestion for the wingers having 4 star at least weakfoot, I used Nedved there at the start of full release and he was excellent.

  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    Great guide! Im also playing with a cheap team... till the prices go way down its fine with me. Van Persie, Nani and Sneijder form a magnificent triangle :smile:

    51eohs.png

    I built my first-ever 4141 in 14 around RVP when I pulled him in a daily gift (!) pack, back when he was still 89 OVR. He is the best pure shooter, sans the loaned CR7 I got from the EASFC catalog, I've ever had. But then he got an in-form around this time then, and his price skyrocketed and I very happily sold him for something like a quarter million. I wish he had a little more strength and physical presence, but you can definitely build around him. Nani and Sneijder have also always been very, very good for me in ever FUT I've tried them in.
  • Xtc
    5186 posts Big Money Move
    TheRev wrote: »
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.

    Garcia is M/H so is Denisov.
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    Xtc wrote: »
    TheRev wrote: »
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.

    Garcia is M/H so is Denisov.

    They both play like H/H or even sometimes H/M, even when told to stay back on defense. That's why I recommended low AWR CDMs when possible. In a Russian league, it isn't possible (no low AWR CDM's in the league, and it's difficult to hybrid one in...it can be done, obv, but it really limits your choices elsewhere). Those guys are total liabilities in attack, which just compounds the difficulty of using them. If I'm going to have to field an attacking CDM, I want them to be good at attacking.
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    METH wrote: »
    Patience is the key to this formation.

    THIS. I suspect it is also why it isn't one of the most popular formations. Too many FUT players want their guys to sprint around like muppets on steroids instead of letting the ball do the work for them.
  • Joeyalltheseven
    2388 posts Fans' Favourite
    TheRev wrote: »
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.

    This is why I use Pereyra, Guarin or Marchisio
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    TheRev wrote: »
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.

    This is why I use Pereyra, Guarin or Marchisio

    When I get around to building a top-tier Serie A side, I'm drooling over the possibility of a Pjanic/Marchisio/Medel midfield.
  • Suammy
    39 posts Last Pick at the Park
    Nice stuff! May give it a go
  • Joeyalltheseven
    2388 posts Fans' Favourite
    TheRev wrote: »
    TheRev wrote: »
    Xtc wrote: »
    in the Russian team why mm witsel @ cdm ?

    Because Russia doesn't have a low AWR CDM, so I figured if my CDM is going to bomb forward, he might as well be useful. Witsel > Javi Garcia, Denisov, etc. going forward. Shirokov would also be a possibility.

    This is why I use Pereyra, Guarin or Marchisio

    When I get around to building a top-tier Serie A side, I'm drooling over the possibility of a Pjanic/Marchisio/Medel midfield.

    I haven't used Pjanic yet, I just can't drop either of those three, all do brilliantly and have great all round stats.
    Pjanic lacks 4 star skills and puts me off him.
  • ScytheeHD
    361 posts Sunday League Hero
    nice bro :)
  • Joeyalltheseven
    2388 posts Fans' Favourite
    So giving this a try just now with this team.

    Jovetic
    Anderson Fernandez Marchisio Cuadrado (Iturbe was in first game)
    Guarin
    Sandro Barzagli Bonucci Abate
    Handanovic

    I created a good amount of chances but his keeper was in good form, ended up winning 2-1 in extra time.
    Very well balanced team and great call with the wingers set to come back.
    Jovetic is great for getting people in to play and Fernandez always makes those runs to support.
  • RACharlsie
    97 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    I know this my sound weird but I'm actually scared to try out 4141 with my bad experiences last year. But it does look a lot better this year, would this team be ok?

    Bravo
    Carvajal-Pepe-Varane-Gaya
    Krychowiak
    Feghouli-Modric-James-Konoplyanka
    Benzema

    I'm looking at it as I feel vulnerable defending using a 433 and 4321, it's between 4141 or 4231(2)
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    RACharlsie wrote: »
    I know this my sound weird but I'm actually scared to try out 4141 with my bad experiences last year. But it does look a lot better this year, would this team be ok?

    Bravo
    Carvajal-Pepe-Varane-Gaya
    Krychowiak
    Feghouli-Modric-James-Konoplyanka
    Benzema

    I'm looking at it as I feel vulnerable defending using a 433 and 4321, it's between 4141 or 4231(2)

    If you're worried about defensive vulnerability, I'd swap out James for Kroos, which I might do anyways because of Krychowiak's work rates and sky-high aggression, meaning whoever is in those CM spots is going to have to do some defending. Modric has some defensive chops so he's perfect for this formation. Otherwise it looks great.
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    So giving this a try just now with this team.

    Jovetic
    Anderson Fernandez Marchisio Cuadrado (Iturbe was in first game)
    Guarin
    Sandro Barzagli Bonucci Abate
    Handanovic

    I created a good amount of chances but his keeper was in good form, ended up winning 2-1 in extra time.
    Very well balanced team and great call with the wingers set to come back.
    Jovetic is great for getting people in to play and Fernandez always makes those runs to support.

    How's Cuadrado? Like I said in the guide, I haven't tried out any M/H wingers yet, are his work rates a hindrance at all?
  • mHazard
    13787 posts Has That Special Something
    Superb writing!
  • Joeyalltheseven
    2388 posts Fans' Favourite
    TheRev wrote: »
    So giving this a try just now with this team.

    Jovetic
    Anderson Fernandez Marchisio Cuadrado (Iturbe was in first game)
    Guarin
    Sandro Barzagli Bonucci Abate
    Handanovic

    I created a good amount of chances but his keeper was in good form, ended up winning 2-1 in extra time.
    Very well balanced team and great call with the wingers set to come back.
    Jovetic is great for getting people in to play and Fernandez always makes those runs to support.

    How's Cuadrado? Like I said in the guide, I haven't tried out any M/H wingers yet, are his work rates a hindrance at all?

    I have used Cuadrado in every position possible for a left sided player and at striker and his workrates don't seem to make a difference.
    He is incredibly fast and agile, if he loses the ball he is amazing at recovering and trying to steal it back.
    I don't tend to use formations with wingers as Serie A CMs are awesome but he forces me to play with a winger just to include him.
  • Baznotsobad76
    5063 posts Big Money Move
    Great guide @TheRev.. I'll give it a try over the weekend...
  • Redman I 9 I
    443 posts Sunday League Hero
    Gonna have to give this formation a try, great guide :)@TheRev
  • Maher
    183 posts Has Potential To Be Special
    Amazing guide mate.
    I have ibra and 90k would be great if you can help me build a team around ibra.
    Any custom tactics you using?
  • Xtc
    5186 posts Big Money Move
    I bet Ibra is great in this form
  • TheRev
    293 posts Sunday League Hero
    TheRev wrote: »
    So giving this a try just now with this team.

    Jovetic
    Anderson Fernandez Marchisio Cuadrado (Iturbe was in first game)
    Guarin
    Sandro Barzagli Bonucci Abate
    Handanovic

    I created a good amount of chances but his keeper was in good form, ended up winning 2-1 in extra time.
    Very well balanced team and great call with the wingers set to come back.
    Jovetic is great for getting people in to play and Fernandez always makes those runs to support.

    How's Cuadrado? Like I said in the guide, I haven't tried out any M/H wingers yet, are his work rates a hindrance at all?

    I have used Cuadrado in every position possible for a left sided player and at striker and his workrates don't seem to make a difference.
    He is incredibly fast and agile, if he loses the ball he is amazing at recovering and trying to steal it back.
    I don't tend to use formations with wingers as Serie A CMs are awesome but he forces me to play with a winger just to include him.

    Awesome, cheers.
Sign In or Register to comment.