The Best Way To Use The Enganche In Football Manager

FM22 describes the enganche as the side’s prime creator, a hook that joins the midfield and attack and operates behind the strikers, and a playmaker who sticks to his position and becomes a pivot to his team as they move around him. Unlike the Trequartista, it is a more stationary role as the Enganche acts as the focal point instead of moving around into larger areas of space.

The enganche position has also been described as the traditional no. 10 or the classical number 10 position. 

Since the enganche is not required to cover large areas of the pitch, the position is best left for playmakers who are getting older and can not keep up with the pace of the game any longer, or those players whose physical attributes can not allow them to cover large areas for the entire 90 minutes. 

Good examples of players who fit the enganche position in the recent past include Juan Mata at Man United, Cesc Fabregas towards the end of his career at Chelsea and Mesut Ozil at Arsenal.

As the modern game is slowly shifting towards a high pressing gegenpressing system that most of the time utilizes a midfield three, the enganche position is slowly becoming redundant.

However, you can still have a lot of fun in FM22 with a tactic that makes proper use of this role.

Attributes Required For An Enganche In Football Manager

Since he will be the team’s main creative force, the enganche needs excellent vision, passing, technique and decision-making. Furthermore, he will also need to have above average first touch and composure.

All these attributes will help him receive and keep the ball in tight spaces between the opponent’s defensive midfield and defence, while he quickly weighs which player to feed through on goal with a killer pass.

Good off the ball movement and flair will also be an added advantage, as it will make it more likely for your enganche to receive the ball in dangerous areas, while also having the ability to make passes and complete dribbles other players would struggle to replicate.

Player Traits Required For An Enganche

Having suitable player traits will add to the efficiency of a player in a certain role. The following player traits will make it easier for the enganche to consistently perform well in your system;

  1. Tries killer balls often – As the side’s chief creator, it is expected for the enganche to constantly attempt passes that aim to split the opposition defence. The higher his passing related stats are, the higher the chances of the passes reaching their targets. 
  2. Plays one-twos – passing and immediately receiving the ball in a better position is the best way of progressing the play towards the opposition’s goal, especially for a playmaker who no longer has the physical attributes to consistently run with the ball at his feet.
  3. Dictates tempo – the enganche having the ability to slow or quicken the game as he sees fit will be an added advantage to your team in controlling the flow of the game.

Unsuitable Player Traits For An Enganche

On the flip side, the following player traits will make it very hard for a player to perform consistently well as an enganche.

  1. Runs with ball often – If you are using an enganche because he no longer has the physically attributes to keep running for 90 minutes, then this player trait will not do any favours to what you are trying to achieve. A player with little acceleration and pace will fail more often than not when he tries to run past people with the ball at his feet. 
  2. Plays short simple passes – The main creator in the team should not be shy of attempting risky passes, otherwise the extra defensive work being picked up by other players to cover the enganche’s deficiencies will all be for naught. 
  3. Comes deep to get ball – the enganche should ideally only occupy the small space he has been allocated in order to be effective while in possession. Having this player trait will occasionally make the player drop deep into the midfield or defensive midfield strata, meaning there are chances of him getting the ball when he is too far away from goal to make an immediate impact.

Football Manager Tactic With An Enganche

Any tactic utilizing an enganche should ensure there are plenty of runners for him to pick with through balls and crosses. Therefore, narrow tactics with runners upfront and also from midfield work particularly well with the enganche.

Tactics with players in wide positions can also work, but ensure that you have given them roles like the raumdeuter that encourages this kind of movement in the wide areas.

Football manager tactic with an enganche

It is also vital that the strikers have roles that will encourage trying to break the offside trap rather than dropping deep into the attacking midfield position. This is because strikers dropping back will only lead to them occupying the same positions as the enganche.

Therefore, avoid roles like the false 9 and deep lying forward in favour of the advanced forward or poacher.

Since we are highly reliant on through balls and crosses, you should therefore encourage direct passing from your team. If there are players with low passing stats that you feel will lead to your team losing possession regularly, change their individual passing instructions to shorter passing, while leaving the ones with high passing stats to attempt risky passes.

While using a narrow  formation, the onus will be on your wing backs to provide the necessary width. Failure to do this, and the opposition will easily block the central areas of the pitch, leaving you with nowhere to exploit.

Having a mezzala and a  box to box midfielder behind the enganche will provide enough runners from midfield, while the defensive midfielder will be tasked with stopping counter-attacks. 

If you find your team leaking goals, make the wing backs to be less adventurous or put one of the central midfielders in a ball winning role for more defensive cover.