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Old 01-13-2013, 12:09 PM   #1
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Crossing Thread

I'm starting this thread to get some help and hopefully also help other with crossing and playing the ball in the air/headers.

I noticed that nobody has made a thread about crossing since 2009! I'd say that we're a few years overdue. Personally, I have always had difficulty getting my crosses in and hitting my target(s). Therefore, I score a majority of my goals from passing the ball around the back line of the penalty area, looking for an opening. This year, I want to make crossing a regular part of my strategy as well so I created this thread.

I want to get a few things out of the way first:

1. I've watched the crossing tutorials by PatrickHDxGaming and TMMgamer.

Here are the links for anyone who hasn't watched yet:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIqGmVYvpvk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4Y4rXp6yh0

These videos are great, however, what I really need help with I believe is the nuts and bolts of crossing - what specifically to look for in the penalty box, how much power to use to hit my spots, whether to try to aim or just let the CPU aim for me (I use semi settings), and how to fight for the ball/win the battle in the penalty box.

For anyone who wants theory on when to cross or simply to know how to make the different types of crosses happen, the videos above are excellent.

2. My problems stem not from not knowing the theory behind when/how to cross OR not knowing how to execute the controls, but rather not knowing how to do it effectively. For example, my issue is not knowing how much power to put on a cross from certain parts of the pitch and whether to allow the CPU to aim it for me or to try to aim myself.

3. Winning the ball in the air/winning the battle in the penalty area is a problem for me. I kind of need to know the nuts and bolts to this too. Essentially, what do you try to do when you get control of a player? Do you try to continue moving forward with them? Do you just hit shoot as soon as the player is switched to and hope the CPU can get you into position for the shot? Do you have any effective tactics you like to use to "muscle" the defense out of your way?

Any and all help on this would be appreciated!
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:11 PM   #2
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Re: Crossing Thread

I will read this thread with much interest because crossing is the one part of this game I completely fail at.

I also fail at dribbling but I don't care about that. The special moves are tedious and unrealistic to begin with.

Crossing, however, is a key part of the modern game. I need to figure it out. I also need to make a few custom set pieces. I've just gone an entire season WITHOUT scoring a goal from a corner. That's unacceptable.
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:39 PM   #3
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Re: Crossing Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnemi
I will read this thread with much interest because crossing is the one part of this game I completely fail at.

I also fail at dribbling but I don't care about that. The special moves are tedious and unrealistic to begin with.

Crossing, however, is a key part of the modern game. I need to figure it out. I also need to make a few custom set pieces. I've just gone an entire season WITHOUT scoring a goal from a corner. That's unacceptable.
I'm not sure if you watched these tutorials yet, but here are two on corners:

PatrickHDxGaming - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bO2YNzJbqI
TMMgamer - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLWu_mTw3rc

I'll just make a quick note on corners for you based on my own experience:

1. Use a left-footed player for the right corner. I play with Manchester United, so a lot of times I use Van Persie for this. The idea (if you follow the TMMgamer routine) is to curl the ball with spin towards the goal. He explains that this helps keep the defense off balance and gives the attacker an edge as they are moving towards the goal when they take the header. It makes sense to me.

I have scored with this routine quite a few times, and often they have been important goals.

2. Physically look at the controller in your hand when you practice corners to get a handle on where the left stick is being positioned. I have a tendency to put too much top-spin on the ball - i.e. don't push the stick far enough to the right or left and too much to the top. This is usually why my corner kicks don't hit the position I want them to.

Once I kind of "train" myself on the positioning aspect, it almost becomes like second nature. Every once in a while I practice this, though, because I do tend to go back to my old habits.

3. It's better to go a bit higher on the power than it is to go lower. Rarely do I score if I power at 2 bars or less. I am probably most successful around 2.5 bars, but I have scored at 3 bars and maybe even higher. I've just found it makes sense to err on the side of more power.

4. Go easy on the header button. I know everyone who reads this will probably already know this.

5. I have no tips on fighting for the ball! That's part of my issue on crosses. I also have nothing to say on PatrickHDxGaming's corner routine because I haven't used it myself yet.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:35 PM   #4
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Re: Crossing Thread

To fight on headers I often use L2/LT to muscle the defender, i don't know if it really works but it works mentally for me, I think of it as boxing out on a rebound. I find tapping the shoot button works well.

Additionally if I hit a cross short or too long instead of using the shoot button to head the ball i will use the pass button for the header and either knock it on or knock it back closer to the net.

I use all manual controls and I feel that on semi/assisted it could be even more lethal as it will pass it straight to your teammate.

Also on goalkicks I try and push into the back of the defender contesting for the header, dont be afraid to head it back as I find that there is more success this way than trying to head it on forward.
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Old 01-14-2013, 04:38 AM   #5
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Re: Crossing Thread

I think in the youtube crossing tutorial the low cross was a bit glossed over. It's quite different from the normal cross. Note that the ball travels a comparable distance at a lower altitude, which means it's travelling quite a bit faster. It's better for situations like a near post connection with a smaller but quicker striker, or any other situation where there's a direct line of sight. In other words, if you're crossing it to Dzeko, hang it up there. If it's for Aguero, do the low or ground cross. Ground crosses almost always require a counter attack situation because otherwise there are too many legs in the way for the ball to get through.

Quite a few examples also showed crosses that were way too late (and probably badly defended). Note that while the winger is running, both the CB's and ST's move into the penalty box and *stop*. When the ST's stop, CB's usually stop right next to them (depending on marking skills). IME cross while an ST and his CB are still running somewhat away from each other. Uncontested headers are the best because...

It's not that hard to contest headers. I'm not sure how many people do this, but on defense you have to switch to CB's or GK *before* the cross comes. (Quite a few of the crosses in those videos should have been collected by the GK, or at least the GK could have closed down the angle.) CB's typically are bigger and better headers, so ST's are already at a disadvantage if they're going to have to muscle it out for the ball. But CB's have crap accel/agility so if they have to change direction, they're dead. One other option is to catch the defense on a switch where a LB/RB is defending your striker.

Lastly, formation and tactics matter. In 4-3-3 you normally have only one guy in the box. Good luck hitting him against 2 CB's. Maybe you need to edit the formation to move the wingers to striker roles on attack. IME 4-4-2 works a bit better. Also review your tactics for crossing, otherwise the strikers won't make those types of runs.
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:30 AM   #6
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Re: Crossing Thread

much like what false nine has said, i think formation is pretty key to crossing. I feel like it is necessary to have two strikers posting up on the center backs. Think of it like basketball, your center/pf is in the low post position and you just have to feed him the ball. use the low/near post cross for this. less power is good in this situation because it makes it easier to volley without having to take a touch first. i dont have an example video, however im sure you can find one.

the other so called cross i like to do isn't actually a cross. it is a horizontal through lob. I like to refer to it as an alley oop cross or lob. It travels slower but the height of the pass is ideal for positioning on headers. this does take some practice with manual controls, however it is absolutely lethal if you master it. it can be done with semi and assisted but you don't have as much control on the position. here is an example : http://youtu.be/KR49g2rtGZQ . I cant stress how creative you can be with this. if you are into basketball, think about doing pick and rolls and lobbing to your aerial threat, it is absolutely nasty.

last cross i like to do is kind of a cut back cross. i like this because the defense sometimes overplays and expects a backpost cross and then positions itself to prevent it. i will cut back with my dribbler and play a low/near post cross. it does not give the defense alot of time to react, but you have to see the open man and really visualize it in your head.

here is a good example : http://youtu.be/4IC59lHje7A . You cant see the buildup on this play, but originally i was wider on the wing and wanted to play a back post cross, however it was defended, i cut inside hoping someone would get open. the defense over pursued and my cdm made a late run, thats when i found him and got lucky with the keeper spilling the ball.

another example of cutting back to cross. http://youtu.be/-JJS8_vchaw . once again the defense over plays the back post cross, and actually does a good job taking away the near post as well. i cut back and see my cdm unmarked and making a late run. my cam weakfoot is pretty atrocious so you can see how bad the cross was and finish was pretty terrible too, i just got lucky the keeper tripped over his own man. if any of my strikers was in that same position, we would have seen a spectacular diving header.
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Old 01-14-2013, 02:52 PM   #7
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Re: Crossing Thread

Thanks to everyone for contributing to this thread. I really appreciate it and I think we're working something nice up here. I'm actually hoping I can figure out how to upload some of my highlights so that I can kind of track my progress and share it with other people as to what I did/how I improved my crossing.

I want to mention first off that thanks to some of the tips in this thread I have already scored some important goals on crosses. I've recently been keeping track of approximately how many crosses I get in/attempt a game. With Manchester United, I have been playing about 7-8 crosses a game and have completed as many as 4-5 of them.

The last cross I scored on I hit Van Persie who was posted up against a defender near the goal and I kind of pushed back against the defender and headed it in. It felt awesome and was actually an equalizer! I also scored on a few corners and another cross that was more of a breakaway and one where my CDM kind of flicked the ball to himself and booted it in rather than went for a header.

eyeam - I have used the lobbed through ball instead of an early cross with some success. I think I just have the timing of this down better than I do of the various types of crosses. This was an awesome point to bring up and I will have to practice this a little bit more.

One of the things I think that I am realizing is that crosses played from the back line are a lot more effective for me. I think some of my issue has been that I have been crossing from too far away from the penalty area and so I haven't been able to hit my men in the box with regularity.

False Nine - You've given me a lot to think about. I'm going to review my settings and see what they look like. I play with Van Persie as my striker, and Rooney as a CAM in a 4-2-3-1. I know Van Persie isn't the greatest aerial threat in the world but he is at least competent I would think. Perhaps my settings don't maximize my ability to play in the cross (they're just the standard settings for Manchester United).
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:55 AM   #8
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Re: Crossing Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by OpTiOnMaStA
I play with Van Persie as my striker, and Rooney as a CAM in a 4-2-3-1. I know Van Persie isn't the greatest aerial threat in the world but he is at least competent I would think. Perhaps my settings don't maximize my ability to play in the cross (they're just the standard settings for Manchester United).
Crossing is not entirely about headers anyway. RvP should be a terror with his volleys or connections with ground crosses, too (like his goal against Liverpool last weekend).
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