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Aston Villa Tactical Advice. I got sacked :(


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Hello guys, hope you are good, staying safe and inside! Would like some tactical advice if possible please guys, I got sacked from Aston Villa first season but before I start a new save, I would like to try and understand what was wrong with the basics of my tactic.

I have attached the formation below, basically from looking at the squad and the reputation Villa will have being a new promoted team, I thought a counter attacking style of play with quick transitions would be my best bet. I went with the 532, with support wing backs. I signed Augustinsson LWB to be first choice, however he is not in this screenshot as well as Guilbert being my starting RWB but when I took this SC I think I was about to play a cup game. 

Regard the defenders, konsa was probably only the weaklink regarding heading and jumping reach, engles and mings are pretty strong in that area (15s).

Midfielders, lansbury was in rotation with hourihane & mcginn because of the laters traits like comes deep to get ball, maybe I could of tried mcginn at DLP.

I thought we lacked penetration through the middle and combined with team mentality being cautious, that is why I decided to go with Grealish on a Mezzala Attack role.

Wesley on Target Man Support and Kodja on Advanced Forward, running into channels and spaces that opposition fullbacks/wing backs leave.

Team Mentality

Cautious/Balanced depending on the opposition, more than not it was Cautious.

Team Instructions 

We kept it pretty simple at all times and try to adjust based on what I saw in game but clearly I was misreading game situations.

So when we played cautious mentality, I did not touch defensive line etc because the mentality brings it down already. When we played balanced mentality, I did alter the defensive line slightly lower due to trying to get that counter attack feel.

More Direct Passing, Slightly Higher Tempo, Counter, Defend Narrower (encourage people to cross the ball in and we used our tall defenders to clear our lines) Lower Defensive Line (dependant on starting mentality) Lower Line of Engagement (Mid Block) try and win the ball in the middle of the pitch rather than high up the pitch (dependant on starting mentality) 

Any suggestions why this could of possibly failed, thanks a lot guys! 

 

 

3c63e7d3-83d6-422c-8611-6353d457eb24.jpg

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3 hours ago, WHUBen said:

3c63e7d3-83d6-422c-8611-6353d457eb24.jpg

 

3 hours ago, WHUBen said:

Any suggestions why this could of possibly failed

Looking at the screenshot, it seems that you tried to counter-balance the poorly balanced setup of roles and duties by using a bottom-heavy formation. But such approach usually does not work. 

 

3 hours ago, WHUBen said:

So when we played cautious mentality, I did not touch defensive line etc because the mentality brings it down already. When we played balanced mentality, I did alter the defensive line slightly lower due to trying to get that counter attack feel

You mentioned only the defensive line, but what about the Line of engagement? I am asking because the LOE works in tandem with the defensive line and the combination of these two is a very important part of any tactic. 

 

4 hours ago, WHUBen said:

More Direct Passing, Slightly Higher Tempo, Counter, Defend Narrower (encourage people to cross the ball in and we used our tall defenders to clear our lines) Lower Defensive Line (dependant on starting mentality) Lower Line of Engagement (Mid Block) try and win the ball in the middle of the pitch rather than high up the pitch (dependant on starting mentality) 

You seem to be trying to play a counter-attacking style, but the problem is that you created tactical overkill by applying too many instructions at once. On top of that, your setup of roles and duties also needs to be tweaked in order to better suit counter-attacking football.

Lower DL and Lower LOE is not a mid-block combination. It's a low block, although not an optimally designed one.

Btw, you do not have to play on a low team mentality (e.g. cautious) in order to be defensively solid and/or play counter-attacking football. The mentality is not about that. 

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okay, so its obvious I got it completely wrong. I am presuming the lack of penetration/attack duties to attack space the teams are remaining? 

Regarding roles not duties, how can I improve on this/know what to identify? Regarding the two central players Mezzala Attack & CM (s), I wanted to go with Mezzala Attack and BBM (s) but didn't want two midfielders with roam. 

Also thank you for taking the time to reply, appreciate it :)

Edited by WHUBen
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40 minutes ago, WHUBen said:

I am presuming the lack of penetration/attack duties to attack space the teams are remaining?

I guess you are asking about attacking the space that opposition teams are leaving behind their lines when they attack you aggressively? 

 

45 minutes ago, WHUBen said:

Regarding roles not duties, how can I improve on this/know what to identify? Regarding the two central players Mezzala Attack & CM (s), I wanted to go with Mezzala Attack and BBM (s) but didn't want two midfielders with roam

To put it quite simple, here is how I would tweak your setup of roles and duties to make it better suited for a counter-attacking style of football:

TMat     AF

 

BWMsu     MEZsu

WBsu        DMde         WBsu

CDde CDco CDde

GK/SKde

The next step is of course - setting the instructions right. 

Given that you play in a very bottom-heavy formation, I think you could comfortably go with the Positive team mentality in order to encourage faster attacking transitions (or at least the Balanced).

So what could be good team instructions for a simple counter-attacking style under the Positive team mentality? Here is what I would start with:

In possession - hit early crosses and slightly narrower width

In transition - start with no instructions and occasionally add the Counter

Out of possession - standard DL and lower LOE (defensive width should be either standard or wider, not narrower)

In terms of player instructions, I would only tell the AF to close down more and the mezzala to take more risks.

So that would be the tactic I would start with. Small tweaks can be made occasionally if needed, but this is the base.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask me :thup:

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