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Positional guides FM24

Wing-Back

FMInside May 20, 2023 Last modified: 6 Oct 25,436 views

A closer look at the Wing-Back player role in Football Manager.

What is a Wing-back?

Football Manager states: Usually playing out wide with no wing support, the Wing-Back must fulfil all the attacking and defensive duties of wingers and full-backs. In attack he must be prepared to run at his man and put in aggressive crosses, in midfielder to help with the possession battle and in defence to close down opponents, block crosses and win back the ball when possible.

The Wing-Back player role is available on a Defensive, Support, Attacking or Automatic duty

A hybrid full-back & winger

A Wing-back is a player role that combines the attributes of a full-back and a winger. They operate on the flanks of the pitch, providing support to both the defensive and attacking phases of play. Wing-backs are expected to defend like full-backs and attack like wingers. They are a key component of a team's tactical setup, providing width and depth to the team's playstyle.

When do I pick a Wing-Back?

A Wing-Back is usually picked when the manager wants to play with a formation that utilizes three or five defenders. The Wing-Back will operate in a more advanced and forward position that the traditional full-back. They will provide the depth and width to a formation that usually lacks players on the wing. 

A team that plays with a formation that has three central defenders and two Wing-Backs can effectively outnumber their opponents in wide areas of the pitch, making it easier to create scoring opportunities.

Which attributes does a Wing-Back need?

Wing-Backs require a unique set of attributes to effectively execute their role on the pitch. They need to be physically fit, as their role requires them to cover a lot of ground during the game. Their speed, acceleration, and agility are also essential attributes, as they need to be able to track back quickly to defend while also making runs forward to support the attack.

In terms of technical attributes, Wing-Backs need to have excellent crossing ability and be able to dribble past opponents in one-on-one situations. Their passing, vision, and decision-making abilities are also important, as they need to be able to make quick and accurate decisions when in possession of the ball.

Defensively, Wing-Backs need to be strong tacklers, have good positioning, and be able to read the game well. They should be able to anticipate and intercept passes while also being able to mark their opponents effectively.

Defend

Key Desirable
Marking Crossing
Tackling Dribbling
Anticipation First Touch
Positioning Passing
Teamwork Technique
Work Rate Concentration
Acceleration Decisions
Stamina Off the Ball
  Agility
  Pace

Support & Automatic

Key Desirable
Crossing First Touch
Dribbling Passing
Marking Technique
Tackling Anticipation
Off the Ball Concentration
Teamwork Decisions
Work Rate Positioning
Acceleration Agility
Stamina Pace

Attacking

Key Desirable
Crossing First Touch
Dribbling Passing
Marking Technique
Tackling Anticipation
Off the Ball Concentration
Teamwork Decisions
Work Rate Positioning
Acceleration Agility
Stamina Pace
  Flair

What are the best player traits for a Wing-back?

Player traits are actions a player will more likely perform during a match than others.They don't give him extra abilities, but will affect his decision making. A player trait can be learned through individual training or through mentoring.

  • Gets forward whenever possible: This trait will increase the number of forward runs a player makes.
  • Runs with ball often: A Wing-Back will have the entire flank to cover and has a lot of space to dribble.
  • Likes to Cross Ball: A Wing-Back also needs to provide enough crosses to create enough scoring opportunities for your forwards
  • Plays One-Twos: Useful if you play against teams who do not give away a lot of space, especially in the final third.
  • Cuts inside from the wing: Could be useful if you want your wing-back to pop-up in the box or run inside with the ball to create scoring opportunities.
  • Knocks ball past opponent: Useful trait if you have a speedy Wing-Back. Combine this with a high dribbling rating and a player could a real attacking force.

Which tactical style or team instructions will suit a Wing-back?

Wing-backs work best in a system that utilizes three or five defenders, such as the 3-5-2 or 5-3-2 formations. The team's tactical style should also be geared towards attacking football, as Wing-backs are expected to provide attacking support in addition to their defensive duties.

A high tempo, direct passing style of play suits Wing-backs, as it allows them to make quick runs forward, utilize their pace, and create scoring opportunities.

Wing-backs in Football Manager 2023

A selection of the best left or right wing-backs in Football Manager 2023.

  • RAT
  • name
  • age
  • sell value
  • POT
  • 81
  • David AlabaDL, DC, WBL, MCDL, DC
  • 30
  • € 61,759,410
  • 87
  • 82
  • Reece JamesDR, DC, DM, WBRDR, WBR
  • 22
  • Not for sale
  • 85
  • 82
  • João CanceloDR, DL, WBR, WBLDR, DL, WBR, WBL
  • 28
  • € 199,740,740
  • 84

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