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Discussion
I've noticed there are a lot of different variations of 5-2-3 with wingbacks and three strikers. All of them seem relatively successful, but they also seem to concede a lot.

I downloaded three popular ones just for screenshots:

https://i.imgur.com/5vQ3aBU.png

https://i.imgur.com/JiHSVfD.png

https://i.imgur.com/mkqgBM3.png

I play this formation (albeit with different roles) on my current save and have experienced great results, however defensively we are absolutely hopeless. I've played three seasons: first one I conceded 70, second I conceded 57 and third I conceded 69. Offensively we were impressive but I'd honestly rather win 1-0 than 6-2.

Has anyone found a tactic anywhere that plays this formation, but is defensively sound? If so, please point me towards it so I can scour it for guidance.

Thanks.
You need great Wing Backs so you can play with this formations, i play whit this formation but a little deferent roles and have good results with my Partizan save
I think what you need to remember with this is that the 'formation' is where your team are WITHOUT the ball, yet the roles are more about with the ball and can completely change the shape of your team, leaving them open (for example) to counter attacks or long balls over the top.

Using the 3 you've shown, the 'attacking' mentality of the wingbacks would mean they are high, the centre midfielders will all be joining in the attack as they are on 'support'. There is also a high possibility that your centre-backs have joined in as 'ball playing defenders' look to do. Unless you've a very talented squad (like Man City in FM18) I'd recommend having at least 1 defender who isn't a BPD to provide a bit more cover.

Having said all of this... I am rubbish at FM this year
If you want to be defensively sound then how about try not exploiting the match engine's weakness (3 strikers) and use a real formation.
Just look what you're doing. All your defenders will step out of your defence and you have no one on defend duty, nobody's providing any cover. You just get caught out all the time. It's normal.

This is not a good formation, but switching your defenders to cover duty will likely help immensely. That means you won't have anyone taking on the attackers, so you will still concede vs better teams.

You will need to find at least some sort of balance in your formation.
Why not use a realistic formation that isn't broken then... The reason why it's rubbish in defence is because it's an awful formation. Just the game engine can't handle 3 strikers. If you only want to win without a challenge then go ahead use 3 strikers but you may as well just give yourself £1 billion to spend because you want to win without a challenge.
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