FAQ/Strategy Guide by ig1234

Version: 0.4 | Updated: 05/01/03 | Printable Version

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++CM4: Championship Manager 4 - FAQ - PC
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Version 0.1 - ig1234 (Dan Lee)

FAQ can be viewed provisionally at http://www.geocities.com/ig12345/ig1234CM4.txt


This Game Guide / FAQ is created for personal use only. You must not use it
for anything that gains profit. Specifically Magazines, Game Guides,
Commercial Web Sites, unless you have my written permission.
You’re also not allowed to rip off part/s of this Game Guide / FAQ and put
it on your own Game Guide / FAQ. Anyone doing this is guilty of plagiarism",
the act of stealing and passing off of ideas and words of another as one’s
own without crediting the source.
You also cannot use this Game Guide / FAQ as a guide for you to make your own
Game Guide / FAQ, you must do everything there is to do in the game yourself
or have others give info about your game and give them proper credit. You
can copy the layout though.
You can put this Game Guide / FAQ on your non-commercial or non-profit web
site provided that not a single character has been edited or removed and you
MUST have permission from me in order to do so. You can also, print a copy of
the entire FAQ / Guide or a part of it, provided you only use it for personal

If you wish to put forward any suggestions, ideas or actual content to add to this
FAQ - Contact ig346@hotmail.com via email or on MSN Messanger. Also any questions will be
answered if possible. New formations, new discoveries etc. being useful.

Version 0.1  - Begin with layout, contents, and ideas. (April 8th 2003)
Version 0.2  - Most ideas got down, 10% or so of sections complete, well, by my expectations -
upto tactics. (April 9th 2003)
Version 0.3  - Further work on tactics - Finally continued FAQ due to CM4 constantly crashing
leaving me to give up with it. (April 15th 3003)
Version 0.4  - On track again, continued tactics, Notepad problems of all things hampering me
(19th April 2003)




1.0 What is CM4? - A breif history of Championship Manager
1.1 New features
1.2 System requirements
1.3 Precautions to take during use
1.4 Skins
2.0 The nations/leagues
3.0 Getting started
3.1 Choosing your team
4.0 Season one
4.1 Starting out with your team
4.2 Pre-season
4.3 The new campaign
5.0 Tactics
5.1 Formations
5.2 Countering your opponents formations
5.3 Substitutions
5.4 Changing tactics when winning
5.5 Changing tactics when losing
5.6 Changing tactics when drawing
?.? Player tactics

?.? Transfers
?.1 The transfer window
?.2 In
?.3 Out
?.4 Loans - who to choose
?.5 Trialists, enquiries and first options

?.? Training

?.? Under-19's and Reserves

?.? Players

?.? Staff

?.? The media

?.? Looking for a new job

?.? Multiplayer and Network

?.? National teams and other easter eggs

?.? Cheats - amd why you shouldnt cheat.

?.? Scenarios

?.? Links

?.? Credits


1.0. What is CM4? - A breif history of Championship Manager
Sports Interactive, a British company, founded by Oliver and Paul Collyer, has gone on to
become one the Britians most successfull companies, based soley on the success of their
Championship Manager series. CM1 was released in 1991/2/3 and was rejected to be published by
a number of companies. Eventually Eidoes Interactive chose to publish it, and to a
slow reception, it was released, but began to build a reputation. An update for the 92/3
season followed, then for 93/4. CM Italia, standing alone, followed this. The series came into
its own when CM2 was released. More specifically CM 97/98, a game still played
by many today due to the sheer brilliance of it. Also released were a number of add on discs,
allowing play in a number of other countries, such as Italy and Spain, allowing you to play as
a non-English side for the first time. SI could only build on that success, a
nd in 1998 released CM3, to a huge reception, becoming one of the best selling PC games of all
time. A number of updates would follow, 99/00. 00/01. 01/02, wish 01/02 becoming the fastest
selling PC game of all time. Oliver Collyer stepped down from the staff,
remaining in the background after CM3, and the team, grew larger, even getting Ray Houghton on
board. The game made its console debut on the Xbox with 01/02, and more specifically the
console only 02/03, and then 4 months later, CM4 was released on the 28th of March 2003. The
game had seen numerous delays due to techinical problems. The game has had a mixed reception,
due to a huge number of bugs of all manner.

An enhancement pack is now available to fix many of these, and 2 others planned in the near
You can download it here:

Championship manager is the most successful football management game of all time. Surpassing
many of its rivals due to its sheer depth, and never choosing to conform, simply keeping with
its text engine. It gives a huge number of options and statistics, along with a huge database
of players, staff, clubs, leagues and nations.

Sports Interactive's current project, aside from fixing CM4, is Eastside Hockey Manager 2, an
Ice Hockey management sim in the same plau style as the CM series.

One of the main additions with CM4 however, is the new 2D match engine.

1.1 New features
Quoted from SI:

- There is now 39 Leagues with more than 2000,000 players and staff.
- New Tactic System
- New Training System
- New 2D Match Mode
- Praising and Shaming players
- Skinnable
- Updated look to fit in with Windows XP
- Right Button Mouse Clicking and Keyboard  Shortcuts
- Enhanced Multiplayer
- New In-Depth Media Interaction
- Latest Transfer Rules
- Improved Transfer Options
- Wage and Transfer Budgets
- Fan Feedback
- News Ticker
- Reserves and U19 teams, both controllablee, both in leagues!
- Player Personalities
- More Feedback from Backroom Staff
- Enhanced Players Notes

The most important of these is a 2D match engine, which allows you to see the matches played
from an overhead
perspective, and is similar to the 'Proplay' system used by real managers. It allows you to
see where players fail,
or succeed, where tactics work, and where you need to improve.

1.2 System requirements
(To play 1 League with Small Database)
Intel P3 600MHz or Equivalent
Windows 98/XP
64Mb RAM (128Mb for Windows XP)
Graphics: 1024x768, 32BIT Colour Required.
Audio: DirectX Compatible Soundcard.

Inter P4 1GHz or Equivalent - CM4 is Optimized for P4
256Mb RAM

Options should be correct, though each PC is different, and you may experience problems, your
best bet then is to
contact SI, or ask on the GameFAQ's CM4 message board.

1.3. Precautions to take during use
- Do not stand/sit too close to the screen
- Avoid playing if tired or lack sleep
- Play in a well lit room
- Rest for at least 10 to 15 minutes per hoour while playing
- Remove wife/girlfriend from room to preveent constant nagging

1.4 Skins
For the first time in a CM game, the interface is skinnable. This means you can change the
look of the screens,
but downloading or making your own unique skins. The game comes with 3, original, retro blue,
and Ter (by Craig Hunter).
Some may improve the interface, such as making it easier to view certain statistics etc. or
others may allow you to have customised skins of your favourite club etc.
To change the skin, simply go onto game options, and click the drop down skins menu, and pick
another. To add new ones that are downloaded, unzip, or put them in the CM4/Data/Skins folder.
To create your own, see an alternative FAQ, or work it out by using the current skins and
notepad as a basis.

2.0 The nations/leagues
This version of CM has the largest selection of playable countries than ever before. A total
of 39, with the number of divisions available to each in brackets:

Argentina (2)
Australia (1)
Austria (2)
Belgium (3)
Brazil (3)
China (2)
Columbia (2)
Croatia (2)
Czech Republic (2)
Denmark (2)
England (5)
Finland (2)
France (3)
Germany (3)
Greece (2)
Holland (2)
Hong Kong (1)
India (1)
Ireland (2)
Israel (1)
Italy (4)
Japan (2)
Mexico (2)
Northern Ireland (2)
Norway (3)
Poland (2)
Portugal (3)
Russia (2)
Scotland (4)
Singapore (1)
South Africa (2)
South Korea (1)
Spain (3)
Sweden (3)
Switzerland (2)
Turkey (3)
USA (3)
Wales (1)
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) (2)

3.0 Getting started
The seasons begins for English teams in June/July 2002, it will start at various other times
for other nations.

These are the simple intructins to start a new season:

1. Click Start new game (or Quick start game).
2. Pick the leagues you want running, the fewer the faster on your machine. If you want to
manage an English side but think you may want a change in future you may want to add one or
two more leagues, such as Seria A (Italy), Primera Liegue (Spain) or the Bundesleague
3. After picking which you want to start with, the game will load for 2-5 mins.
4. Then choose your name, and DOB, and then pick your favourite club, should you have one.
Then choose the club you wish to manage (see 3.1).

3.1 Choosing your team
There are a variety of reasons why you may choose a club.

Firstly, they may simply be your favourite team, and so you want to manage them.
You might want to however pick a side for a number of other reasons:

1. Via their expectations - If a side wants to win the league, try and win it, if a side wants
to avoid relegation, try and stay up.
2. To improve a side, or see how certain big name players play - Building on a side to make it
a 'dream team' by being successfull, and using your earnings to sign big name players.
3. Start from the bottom - Beggining from a Conference side and aiming to the Premiership -
one of the most satisfying acheivements on the game.
4. Glory - Choosing a huge Europeon side such as Manchester United, Inter, or Real Madrid and
wanting to challenge for all competitions and Europe.

I find the most enjoyement comes from mid-table sides, as they can either start pushing for
Europe/promotion, or start falling towards the relegation zone. Examples of these include:

Premiership - Southampton, Tottenham Hotspur, Aston Villa, Leeds,
Division One: Norwich, Preston, Crystal Palace, Wimbledon

Divisions 2 and 3 and the Conferance fluctuate more in terms of form sides. Though they have
2/3 promotion bound, and 2/3 relegation bound clubs each, most have about 20/15 teams who
could end up anywhere in the league, so it isnt easy to guess where each club will finish.

Note that the bigger the side you are, the better you will be expected to do, not taking into
account expectations, as the fans will be suspicious of a proverbial nobody taking up their
clubs reigns. It may also make the same effect occur with a clubs bigger players.

For a beginner, the best sides to gain experience would be the bigger sides, as it is
generally easier to acheieve success and learn, however you will be faced with much tougher

4.0 Season one
This part of the FAQ will help you through the start of your first season at the helm of a
club, starting from joining the club, to the beggining of the season.

4.1 Starting out with your team
When you take up your chosen clubs reigns, you will be presented with certain aims,
expectations and odds.

The clubs board will tell you where they expect you to finish for the season - acheieve these,
and your'e on your way to success. Fail these however and you may be fine, but do any worse,
and you're out the door. You may be issued with an ultimatum, or you may find yourself looking
for a new job, it very much depends on the board's mentatlity, but also the

Supporters expectations must be taken into account. These guys help fund your club, so they
have their say in what they want the team to acheive. Their expectations are generally tougher
to meet than the board. The isnt a problem as the boards expectations are more important.
However if the fans are unhappy, and continue to protest at poor management, then you're in
trouble, as they have a lot of influence on the board, so you may face the sack. Please them,
and you're doing well.

And again, the bigger the club, the bigger the expectations, so take both the board and the
supporters into careful consideration.

You will also be given odds on the title, or promotion. These are generally just a vague
guess, based on previous performance, reputation, and players. However a successful season
will improve the following seasons odds - for example you finish 5th with Southampton, the
next seasons odds may be up to 20-1 for the title, from 45-1.

4.2 Pre-season
Pre-season is a time to refine your club, build their fitness for the new season (See
Training), and bring in some new players to improve the squad (See Transfers).

You are usually set a few friendlies at the start, your best bet, if you want to, is to cancel
them and arrange your own, you may also be offered a few more from other clubs.
Depending on who you are, you would want 3-5 friendlies as you have a few goals to complete

1. See your squad/play around or refine tactics
2. Get your players fit for the new season
3. Try out your new players with the squad

A range of opponents is good, for example one big team, a few league sides, and one or two
none league opponents. The big sides and league sides are mainly to see how the squad will
perform, and the smaller ones are best to give players a good fitness test, and boost morale,
as they are likely to win. It depends on what you want to do.

Arranging 3 or so friendlies, throughout July and maube early August is a good bet, then you
can choose from the numerous offers you are likely to receive to add a few more to the
schedule. Your Under 19's and Reserves also make pre-season plans.

4.3 The new campagain
Pre-season has gone. You've played you're friendlies, signed your players, soon the transfer
window will close (See Transfer window), and you'll be playing for the league.

You should have your tactics sorted, and if they begin to fail, start to change things (See

You have your team together, and you should find a formulae that works, if not, maybe a squad
rotation is the thing for you.

See the following sections to ease you through the season(s) ahead.

5.0 Tactics
Tactics are one of the most important parts of your manaerial game. Get them wrong, and you're
doomed to fail. Continue to get them wrong, and well, you have no hope. You may find a winning
formulae, but you wont be able to keep it forever. Teams learn and adapt fron your style, and
so you will have to change tactics slightly whatever you do. Tactics will also be changed
midmatch, to help you defend a lead, build on one, or get you back into a match, or perhaps
score that vital equaliser.

5.1 Formations
Following are a list of some of the most effective formations to use, and what situations to
use them in, based on form, opponents, injuries/suspensions etc.


GK = Goalkeeper
DL = Defender Left
DR = Defender Right
DC = Defender Centre
SW = Sweeper
WB = Wing Back
DM = Defensive Midfileder
AM = Attacking Midfielder
MC = Midfielder Centre
MR = Midfielder Right
ML = Midfielder Left
WR = Winger Right
WL = Winger Left
FW = Forward
ST = Striker

/\ or \/ or / or \= Pushing forward/pulling back and diaganol

1. 4-4-2 DM


This is my most common formation. The DM is pulling back when needed to help out with
defending while the other midfileders push forward, the MR and ML pushing further forward than
the MC.

Other tactics: The back 4 and DM are man marking the 5 most attacking members of the
opposition squad.

Good for: Start of the season, and maybe a persistant tactic. It isnt unltra-defensive, nor is
it ultra-attacking, it is at a decemt balance between the two.

2. 4-3-1-2


An adaptation from 1. . This lineup if generally used against tougher opponents, and though
appears rather defensive, it is still a good balance, as the DM's push forward, as well as the
MC. The 3 DM's however make it a more defensive from the normal 4-4-2, and it has the DM
pulling back such as in 1. .

Other Tactics: The back 4 and DM are man marking the 5 most attacking members of the
opposition squad.

Good for: A change in playing style if it should become effective. Mostly though, it is a
useful tactic against big sides, being more defensive, but also gives the team a bigger
attacking chance.

3. 4-4-2 Tight


Another adaptation on 1. and the third most common formation i choose to use myself. I
occasionnaly use this to rotate with 1. should form appear to be dropping. It tightens up the
midfield, but retricts the amount of passes fed to the FW's. It does, however, make it harder
for teams to break your midfield, and makes your midfield the main part of the team. 2
skilfull FW's are more useful to play in this formation however.

Other Tactics: The back 4 and DM are man marking the 5 most attacking members of the
opposition squad.

Good for: A change from 1. . Should you feel the team is starting to go downhill, it would
change things around. If you have 4 very strong midfileders it is also especially good, and 2
skillfull FW's as they will need to create more than they are provided.


5.2 Countering your opponents formations


5.3 Substitutions
Substitutions are vital. If you can make the right changes, you can really acheive great
things. Some managers may rely on a super-sub, like Manchester United's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer,
to change the tactics, while others may choose to make changes routinely.

If you find a lot of the time when you bring a player on, he's getting 8's for ratings, its
always going to be useful. If you make a change, and a few minutes later the substitue nets a
crucial goal, you have the hang of it.

Some players, that are on form for example, or big name players, will be unhappy at being
changed, and they should only be taken off with good reason, such as injury, or poor

When should you make a substituion?

A variety of reasons:

1. When a player if having a bad game, a rating less than 6 will indicate this, and if he has
6, and his team-mates have 7+, then
you'd be advised to change him then too.
2. When a player is lacking in fitness or has a slight injury, and it may hamper his condition
to continue to play him.
3. When a player receives an injury and cant continue.
4. When you are winning and need to make changes to stay ahead(see 5.3).
5. When you are losing and need to make changes to get back into the match(see 5.4).
6. To ease an injured player back into the team, playing the last few mintues is best.
7. To give an unproven player/unproven new player a chance in the side, best for trying out
Under 19's and Reserves (see
Under 19's and Reserves).

5.4 Changing tactics when winning
There are many situations you find yourself in when you are winning. Listed here are a few:

1. Thrashing an opponent (over 3 goal lead)
2. Having a confortable lead (2 goals or so lead)
3. Having a 1 or 2 goal lead in a very even match
4. Scraping a lead by a goal but being dominated

Each of these may require a change in tactics.

1. You may want to do one of 2 things. You could keep the same tactics, as hey, they arent
doing you bad. Or you may feel you dont want to risk any (more) goals conceeded, and so
reverting to a tighter, more compact team, bringing on an extra defender for an attacking
player, to strengthen a defense. This is particulary useful when you need to acheive a certain
Goal Difference to avoid relegation, or win the league for example.
2. Like the first example keeping to the same tactics may do you some good, as they are
already. Otherwise you have two other routes. Either play more attacking, as it would take a
disaster to lose, and bring on an extra attacking player or push the midfiled up further, or
more defensively, bringing on a more defensive player, and telling the midfiled to oush back.
3. Your main plan of action should be to play more defensive. You have your lead, now like
most preoffecional managers defend it. Adding to the defense, pulling players back etc. should
all held protect it.
4. Ultra-defensive is your only option. You're lucky to have the lead, so maybe take off a
striker for a defender, pull any other strikers back as midfielders and sit on your lead as
best you can.

5.5 Changing tactics when losing
When you are losing, you dont want to sit back and lose. There are a few ways in which you may
find yourself losing:

1. Losing by the odd goal, in a fairly even match
2. Losing by the odd goal in a one sided match you are being dominated in
3. Losing by 2 or more goals
4. Being thrased

You will rarely dominate a match and be losing, and the answer to your problem if this occurs
is in your training, as most
likely your strikers arent putting away their chances (See training).

1. In this case you dont want to play for anything but a win. If the match is pretty even, its
liklely your strikers are not being provided for well by their midfileders. Adding to the the
midfield, or changing your worst performing midfileder
for any on the bench may help. ALso brining on another striker will certainly improve your
chances on goal, however make sure the defense is still well covered, as when searching for an
equaliser you may find you fall further behind.
2. If you have nothing to lose, for example goal difference is not important to you, risking
further goals conceeded is something you can afford. So your main port of call will be all out
attack, so to try whatever you can to get equal. You want to play for
the draw.
3. You just simply need to attack and attack. You'll risk more goals, so maybe sorting the
defense out a bit may help, but the teams main focus should be going forward. An extra
attacking player brought on would be essential.
4. You can only pray and hope for the best. You aren't going to get anything, unless God
helps. You can literally do anything. Keep the same. Play more attacking to try and grab some
pride or an amazing way back, or play defensively to try and stop anything more from hurting.

There may be times when you need a certain result to achieve something, such as netting an
away goal, the above information
should cover this.


5.6 Changing tactics when drawing
When drawing you will usually have two main incentives:

1. Play for the draw
2. Play for the win

In 2. you will also have three main situations:

a) When on top of the game
b) In an even game
c) When dominated

1. You're unlikely to win, you dont need a win, or the draw is amazing enough as it is. If
things are going ok, then keep the same tactics, you might want to tighten the defense up and
play a little more defensively. In most other circumstances however playing more defensively
should help you ensure you dont conceed anymore goals, and doing so will probably reduce your
chances of scoring anyhow.

a) Continue the same way you're going. The biggest problem you probably have is finishing,
maybe changing the player wasting most chances could give you a better chance, but you'll
likely net a winner eventually anyhow.
b) Your best bet is to attack more. Bring the midfileders further up the pitch, and maybe
bring on another attacking player. This may risk the defense being under more pressure, but if
you want the win its a risk you have to take.
c) In this case you most likely NEED the win. First port of call, make sure the defense is
safe. Bring a midfielder further back, maybe add another defender, then turn your mind to the
attack. The midfield is now least important, play them more attacking, bar one to play more
defensively, and maybe bring on another forward. There is no guarentee here, you're more liley
to conceed more, but in most cases it will be an all or nothing affair.

?.? Cheats - and why you shouldn't cheat
This section contains any cheats available for CM4. The main one being the Free Players cheat.
HOWEVER i, and many other are strongly opposed to cheating in the game. The point of the game
is 'fun'. Yes, the purpose is challenge, as i have said, but the challenge is where the fun
comes about. How you can gain enjoyement from cheating is beyond me. And the cheats carry a
warning. Use them, yes, use them all the time, BUT DO NOT under any circumstanes boast about
your acheivements when you have cheated, as i have found. Cheating on CM games means anything
you acheive is meaningless to real CM players.
So, after the rant, on with the cheats.

1. Free players cheat:
1) Firstly, you have to get his club to accept your bid.
2) To achieve this, either make a very high bid (many times his market value) that the club
cannot reject ; alternatively, you could make an enquiry and accept the club's demands in
3) When his club allows you to negotiate his contract, click to offer him a contract.
4) While in the contract screen, click news on the left toolbar option (Do not click the back
arrow). Click on that player's name and withdraw your bid.
5) Re-bid for free or whatever amount you wish.
6) Click the back arrow on the left toolbar this time back to the screen where you are
discussing his contract details.
7) Offer him a reasonable contract.
8) When he accepts your contract, he joins your club on a free transfer (or any amount that
you re-bid for).

(Credit: Jex)

2. Increase your wage structure without the approval of your board:
This trick allows you to offer a much higher pay for a particular staff without requesting
from your board.
For instance, to comply with a scout/coach's request which is higher than your board's maximum
wage structure for scout/coach position.

This trick works mainly for scouts and coaches as their wage structure is usually lower than
assistant managers.

For a scout or coach,
1) Click 'Approach to sign'.
2) Change his default position from scout/coach to Assistant Manager.
3) Reduce the wage you are offering to zero.
4) Click offer contract.
5) A few days later, there will be news that he has rejected your offer.
6) Click 'Approach to sign' again.
7) You will find his default position has been changed to Assistant Manager with a
simultaneous significant increase in the wage allowed to offer him.
8) Click the maximum or whatever he requested and offer him a scout/coach posistion.

Please note that this trick allows you to increase your wage structure to sign most scouts or
coaches but it is is dependent on your club's wage structure for an Assistant Manager.

(Credit: Jex)

?.? Scenarios
If you get bored on CM, you may want to play your own though up scenarios, or ideas such as
ones here.

1. Relegation Battle:

Begin a game with a South American/USA side or one who's league starts halfway into the
English season. Then, retire as manager of the club you choose, and see who is struggling
badly in the Premiership, or the Nationwide divisions. Then take control, and your job is to
save them from relegation.

(Credit: Lambo)

CM4 GameFAQ's Board: http://s2.cgi.gamefaqs.com/boards/gentopic.asp?board=33189

Note to self: Read over + where it says 'see tranfers' put see '?.?' etc.

Thanks to (So far):

AlaskaFox (layout issues/ideas/disclaimer)
HHUK (layout issues/some information/ideas)
Lambo (Scenario 1)
Abhisara (CM history information)
ISSChamp (Creative criticism)
Jex (Cheats)