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Countering the 4-3-1-2?

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So recently I've been playing a couple of saves in Germany and been doing pretty well, but I've begun to dread every match against Marco Rose's Borussia Dortmund and their star-studded 4-3-1-2 formation.

I've yet to take a point against them after about a dozen meetings and most matches end in a humiliating loss which I suppose is fair enough, they have some really good players and Haaland is basically a cheat-code but I would like to at least have a fighting chance in these matches. Dortmund do drop points and are yet to win any titles in either of my saves, so they can be defeated, I am just at a loss at how I would go about it. What do you think?

I assume some kind of soak and hit style system based on a 5-3-2 DM or 4-5-1 2 DM formation would be a good starting point? Or is it better to aim towards exploiting their open flanks with a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1?

For reference this is how they lined up in my most recent 5-0 defeat against them:


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Since their WB have to push up, it is a good idea to exploit the flanks using attacking duty with higher tempo. Also can change the defensive width to narrow to further draw their WB up the pitch and hit on the counter. I think 442 DM, 4231 DM , 4213 DM can be good ideas. Use DM to control the space of their AM and waiting for them to lose the ball.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Having a dm to mark an am has worked for me in almost every edition.  They're basically playing a diamond so the flanks. are there for you. A 4-1-4-1 with wingers seems logical. 

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For counter-tactic specific purposes I would go with something like a 4-2-3-1 DM Wide (so 2 DMs and 2 Wingers). TI Extremely Wide - they don't have wingers so use the space; Regroup; Counter; Standard LOE; Direct; High Tempo; More Disciplined; Narrow Defence. FBs with Hold Position and Dribble More; eventually playmaker duty on a winger (or both). Something along those lines should be a good starting point. If you are used to 3 atb; then 5-4-1 but I wouldn't want to be 2x4 in the middle

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