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4-3-3 midfield trio roles

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Im having a problem getting the right combination of roles for midfield trio in my Arsenal save. In my first season i played Odegaard alongside Xhaka(AP-a) and Partey (DLP-D) and that worked wonders, odegaard got 15 assist in premier league only. In the second season i brought Tielemans to replace Xhaka and also Merino. To say the least Tielemans which should have been my starter alongside Odegaard has been very bad, not scoring, not assisting... constantly bad ratings and bad games.. and now Odegaard also is having okay matches but is not assisting or scoring, it's hard for me to find a partner to play alongside him(Except merino and that's why i changed the left CM role to Box to box midfielder). also getting the right combinations for roles of midfielders to get best out of them is hard for me. Do you have any sugesstions? Im out of ideas how to get my midfield working.
I have tried (AP-a, MEZ - s, DLP - s), (AP-A, MEZ - s, DLP - D), (AP-s, MEZ - s, DLP - D), (AP-s, MEZ - s, HB - D), (AP-s, MEZ - s, DM - D and S).


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You can't be sure about the role of the best three midfielders. it must be seen as a whole team to be dynamic.
but when it comes to 4-3-3 to the arsenal team then I will share about what I'm doing right now.
Odegaard is really a talented player as an attacking midfielder general. he can play as AP, CMa, MEZa and DLPs very well. i chose MEZa because he had really good flair.
if he is paired with ESR then he will be AP and ESR as MEZa. Xhaka as a DLP because his attributes confuse me but he has excellent passing and vision as a playmaker so DLPs with hold position as hardcoded is decent for his role.
so the trio for arsenal is DLPs-BWMs-MEZa for equal and strong opponents. APs-BWMs-MEZa for weaker opponents.
BWMs-DMd-CMa/APA/APs for very strong opponents. the other positions are never or rarely changed, maybe ST (AF/DLF/PF).
and below is the tactic that I'm doing.


Edited by kalongtongan
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Why not try something a bit more static? Both centre mid roles roam/move forward and I see you're always using the shiny fancy midfield roles.


Try the boring CM-S, CM-A, or a CM-S, MEZ-A, or even switch it up a bit and go DLP-S, CM-S, so you have deeper midfielders ready to exploit the trio ahead of them. You don't necessarily need the midfield pushing forward with a good, central trio.


Personally I don't get too hung up on assists for midfielders, as the key passes, or pre-assist passes (I hate that term) can matter more IMO.

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I always use a DLP-BBM-MEZ combo. One playmaker is enough. This is my complete (433DM) lineup:

SK (d); FB(s), CD(d), CD(d), WB(a); DLP(d), BBM(s), MEZ(a); IW(a), IW(s); CF(a)

Edited by Skywalk3r83
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because of this topic, yesterday I tried a new save arsenal with the old database 22.0 and the latest ME 22.4.
and this screenshot is the result. I used the 433 with the midfield trio of DLPs-BWMs-MEZa.
if Xhaka is not available then APs-MEZa/s-BWMs.

for me for the midfield trio there can only be one roaming player.
The default tactics and formations are in my post above, APs-BWMs-MEZa.

Because with that role it will mimic 4-2-3-1. the MEZa/CMa will move like AMC.
BWM's role is not a player who chases and takes tackles like a headless chicken because the trigger press in the BWM instruction is always balanced and you can't customize it. if he has concentration, position, tackles and good decisions then he will play well. what's interesting about BWMs is that the hardcode doesn't go further than his position so he only moves in around the first third and second third so he will fill the position that MCL/MCR is leaving because his hold position is not active and he will always be alert to anticipate the opponent's counter . as well as AP in the MC position maybe he will advance a little further than the final third at least he won't overlap the wingers and MEZa.







for PI's :

all 5 front is closedown more

AML : Roam, sit narrow

AMR : take more risk

MC's : Tight mark


Edited by kalongtongan
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I don't use 4-3-3 DM very much, so tell me to do one if you like but....

Why use a Mezzela and an IW/IF on that flank, is it for an overload? I could see it working great with an IF(A) over on the opposite flank

I'd think the best way to get a Mezzala to shine, would be to keep his outer channel free, he's an inside-winger so having the player cut into the channel that he's moving into wouldn't be ideal  

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@Johnny Ace wow that's a question that should be answered very clearly. Unfortunately I'm not fluent in English. but I will try to be brief and hopefully you can understand my intent and purpose.

What I understand is that stay wide on MEZ is stay wide in the zone where he is, which is half space, not stay wide in the wing zone. IW is naturally the same as a conventional winger, he will stay wide if he doesn't get the ball, until he gets the ball he will cut inside forward diagonally, which makes him different from conventional wingers. That's also the reason why I choose to stay narrow on IF/AML and free roles, because I want IF to be an option as a goal scorer other than ST to get closer and penetrate into the box to score goals or provide assists.

MEZ and IW complement each other. With the MEZ, IW can have many options for breakthrough the ball or passing towards it if it gets pressing from an opposing player.

because of language and time limitations and at my place it is already night at 10 pm. As soon as I have free time at home I'll send you some clips of the movement from MEZ and IW.
Believe me I did 2 things. which is to answer your question and translate my answer into English and it takes quite a long time haha.

Edited by kalongtongan
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As I promised last night, this morning I made a clip about movement with and without the ball from MEZ-IW and BWM.

MEZ-IW from the POD set-play.

MEZ stay wide in his zone "half-space" and IW naturally stay wide like conventional wingers.

even MEZ give space to FBs when he tried cut inside.


MEZ-IW was without the ball and MEZ got a goal from an overload on the left.



BWM in set-play out off possession, grabs the ball from the opponent in the box and the team makes a quick counter attack.

BWM was very calm when he took the ball in the box and gave it to GK.

Edited by kalongtongan
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MEZ Move into Channel.

ESR came in as a substitute for Odeegard, overlapping ST, moving into channel and playing one-two with IF and then goal. we kill the game.


IF Movement with stay narrow and roam.

this is when we played a team with high pressing. IF acts as a second striker. balogun is just a player with 2 stars imagine if it was mbape or mane.



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Try bwm(de), cm(at), and mez (at). I would also rethink the front three. In my experience the wide wingers don't work as well so I play narrow 433, using cf(su), af(at), cf(su), midfield as mentioned above, ball playing defender, defender, and two wing backs on attack. Give it a try, you may be surprised at the amount of runs the players make into the box. The players you have will work in those roles without issues.

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CM-S CM-A and DLP is working for for me this year. The main difference between the MEZ and the CM-A is that the first moves more towards the wing while the CMA acts more like an AMC and even scores more running from the midfield.

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At the moment, I am using:

CM(s) - Mez(a)


In previous years, I also used:

DLP(s) - Mez(a)


Both of those have worked well, but as has been said before, it really depends on the style of play you want, and the other roles around the midfield trio. In both of these set ups, I'd have an IW(s) on the right hand side, as he mixes well with the Mez(a)--the former will cut in, and the latter will float outside. If I had a W(s) on the right, I'd change the Mez(a) to a CM(a), because the winger would be staying wide, so my attacking midfielder should be a little more central.

Going back to @sjorvanobi tactic, I would look at the wingers and then work out how to put the midfield together. So, you've got Smith-Rowe as the IW(s) on the left. In that case, I would want a Mez(a) as the left central midfielder. Saka is the IW(a) on the right, so my central midfielder on the right would be a bit more withdrawn. Maybe try the CM(s) on that side. BBM might work, but the Mez(a) roams already, and two roaming roles in there might be a little much. And then stick with the DLP(d) in the DM position, assuming the player is suited to it. If he's not a great ball player, then there's nothing wrong with a DM(d) either. So you'll have something like:


IW(s)         -         IW(a)

Mez(a) - CM(s)


Concerning the tactic generally, maybe try taking off 'pass into space,' as that might be causing issues, too. You're asking the team to pass the ball a lot shorter, but also to look for a killer ball on a more regular basis. You might find the midfield not retaining possession as much as you'd like, but see how the games are going.

I've found Odegaard to be so good in this game that you could use him as either your Mez(a) or CM(s) and he'll do the job.

Hope that helps.

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  • 3 weeks later...

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