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Quite a few midfield roles (e.g. DLP, BWM, RPM) can be played in either the defensive midfield or central midfield 'strata'. Simple question, what are the main aspects I should be thinking about when deciding between the two?

For example, I am developing a 3-4-3 system with a box midfield, similar in some respects to what Tuchel has used with Chelsea. Roles and duties are not too important at this stage (just for illustration), but the midfield 'box' would look something like this:

 SS(a) - - -    AM(s)

DLP(d) - - - BWM(s)

Essentially the two deeper midfielders could be in either strata.

  • Playing them in the DM strata is appealing in order to create more space, but perhaps this is just a visual illusion in the tactics screen more than anything else?
  • If they were in the central midfield strata, could TI's be used to encourage them to drop deeper during the build-up? (e.g. play out of defence). Maybe this is a good compromise?
  • Conversely, what are the best methods to 'encourage' defensive midfielders to contributed in the final third ('get forward' PI perhaps)?

 

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Posted (edited)

1) I believe it's somewhat of an illusion on the screen, I'd just go a little bit more conservative with the roles/duties in CM than in DM. But I've played this formation with Chelsea before but against weaker teams it was a total gamechanger putting them into CM, was having way more offensive threats that way.

2) Yes you can use those but a DLP/D should be good enough if you want that, you have to remember already have 3CBS so don't force too many guys back.

3) I don't know for sure if you can give it to a VOL but a VOL or DM/S with get further forward is your best bet if you want a DM helping around the box.

Edited by Gdansk
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42 minutes ago, Manutd1999 said:

SS(a) - - -    AM(s)

DLP(d) - - - BWM(s)

I'd like to see the whole tactic, because nothing works in isolation.

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Well, it is still a work in progress but something like this:

Capture.PNG.7cddc6e70dc52232ddea6471e8a1c886.PNG

 

The wide midfielders would have different PIs, with the left-sided acting as a more attacking winger and the right-sided more defensive/static.

 

 

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1 hour ago, NotSoSpecialOne said:

It's not an illusion. All things being equal, the same role will operate from deeper positions in the DM strata than it would in the CM strata.

Right. The formations show the starting positions and where they fall back to without the ball. A good way of checking would be to compare the heatmaps of a tactic with a DLPd in central midfield and defensive midfield, for instance.

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14 hours ago, Manutd1999 said:

Capture.PNG.7cddc6e70dc52232ddea6471e8a1c886.PNG

Why the "Dribble less" TI? What's the reasoning/logic behind your choice of that particular instruction? 

In terms of roles and duties, I would only either switch the DLP's duty to support or swap the positions of the DLP and BWM.

Defense-wise, vertical compactness may prove an issue, so keep an eye on that aspect of play.

14 hours ago, Manutd1999 said:

The wide midfielders would have different PIs, with the left-sided acting as a more attacking winger and the right-sided more defensive/static

The opposite would make more sense IMHO.

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For the TIs, I haven't finalised them but "dribble less" was intended to encourage a 'pass first' mentality without resorting to using shorter passing or lower tempo. Similarly, 'low crosses' is to encourage cut-backs instead of aimless crosses. 

Quote

In terms of roles and duties, I would only either switch the DLP's duty to support or swap the positions of the DLP and BWM.

Is there not a risk that a DLP(s) - - BWM(s) pairing could lack defensive cover? Although maybe with 3x centre-backs it's less of an issue....

Quote

Defense-wise, vertical compactness may prove an issue, so keep an eye on that aspect of play

Agreed, if I switch to a DLP(s) I may try dropping the LoE back to standard. 

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1 hour ago, Manutd1999 said:

if I switch to a DLP(s) I may try dropping the LoE back to standard

You can (should) drop the LOE to standard regardless of the DLP's duty. 

 

1 hour ago, Manutd1999 said:

Is there not a risk that a DLP(s) - - BWM(s) pairing could lack defensive cover?

Not necessarily, because you have 3 CBs (as opposed to 2), none of which is a libero. 

 

1 hour ago, Manutd1999 said:

Although maybe with 3x centre-backs it's less of an issue

Exactly :thup:

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5 hours ago, Manutd1999 said:

Thanks for the advice :)

Re the original question, do think it makes much difference whether the midfielders are in the DM or CM strata?

Yes.  The positioning is not just in defense.  For example, DLP(d)&(s) and BWM(d) are all hard-coded to 'hold position' when your team has the ball.

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Awesome post :thup: I'm not sure FM works exactly like this in reality but it's a good idea. Also, droppping the deeper midfielders back to DM allows me to use one of my favourite roles, the Segundo-Volante. So maybe something like this?

--------------------DLF(a)

------------SS(a) ------- AM(s)

WM(s)------------------------------- WM(s)

------------SV(s) ------- DLP(d)

------BPD(d) - -- CD(d) --- BPD(d)

 

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4 hours ago, Manutd1999 said:

Awesome post :thup: I'm not sure FM works exactly like this in reality but it's a good idea. Also, droppping the deeper midfielders back to DM allows me to use one of my favourite roles, the Segundo-Volante. So maybe something like this?

--------------------DLF(a)

------------SS(a) ------- AM(s)

WM(s)------------------------------- WM(s)

------------SV(s) ------- DLP(d)

------BPD(d) - -- CD(d) --- BPD(d)

 

Maybe put the DLP on support duty, if not the DLP and CB's may occupy the same spaces.

Edited by Oluf
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