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Struggling away with 4-2-3-1 approach

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Hi guys

I am playing with man city and struggling in away games.

Using following tactical set-up:



Play Out Of Defence, Run At Defence, Look For Overlap, Push Higher Up, Close Down More, Higher Tempo, Prevent Short GK Distribution


GK (defend)

FbL (Support), CD (Defend), CD (Defend), WingbackR (Attack)

BBM (Support), CM (defend)

IFL (A), APM (Support), IFR (Support)

CF (attack)

I've lost 3 of 4 away games in the PL. 0-1 Chelsea, 0-2 Tottenham (one penalty), 1-3 Palace (2 pentalties)

Short Findings: missing ccc and concede early goales (first 15 minutes)

Using same formation for home games: won Everton 4-2, Leicester 2-0, Villa 2-1, Watford 2-1. - Concede to many goals

Preferred playing style with this tactical set-up: Playing a quick and pressing game.

Any suggestions at the first blow.


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I'd simply consider being more cautious away. Your Wingback is pretty attacking, consider changing to a fullback support for away games. Someone like palace is full of pacey wingers who could easily exploit a team who are pressing high. Just be warey of that too. I'd turn off most of the TIs for away games and only add them if you aren't getting chances.

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I set some instructions back. Wb a to fb a. But same result.

I mean with the squad depth of city I could play with this settings away - couldn't I?

Whats the best set up for a flat midfield of two players and a amc? How should I use the pressing approach away?

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Before starting off on a tactic, I always ask myself how do I want to play, and do I have the players for it.

Once decided, I can then begin to create a tactic based around those principles. Then, whenever I make any choice - be it a formation, role, duty, mentality, TI or whatever - I ask myself what does that choice add? How does it enhance how I want to play? If I can't answer something, I don't add it. Or if I don't understand something, I look it up.

Once finished and I start playing games, if things aren't working I again ask questions and look for answers. Why am I not scoring? Why and how am I conceding? Are my players doing what I expect? etc.

So, the same questions back at you. Why 4231 with those player positions? Why have you chosen each of your tactical settings? How do they each enhance your chosen playing style? How are you conceding goals? Why is your attack misfiring?

I'm not trying to be harsh or deliberately awkward here, just practical. We don't know how your tactic is working out, we can't see it playing on the pitch, and you haven't given us an awful lot to go on. I could make some generalised comments, but they won't be specific for you, and that's the important part :).

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First thing,on an attacking note, I notice is on the left wing, you have a full back support and an inside forward attack. This means you have not really got any one on the left at all as the inside forward cuts in and the fullback doesn't really give any threat down the wing, only an option to others before passing the ball to someone else. Although you have Look for overlap, the fullback won't really overlap as it is more defensive. 2 Inside Forwards makes you quite predictable, where every time they get the ball they try to come inside.

I would recommend;

Fullback support and Winger attack

On a defensive note, in midfield, although a CM defend is defensive, it might be better with a DLP defend as CM defend isn't really as good a holder in front of the defence as say a DLP because in the centre of midfield they like to try to get forward a bit and defend a bit deeper too. Also being away you might want to try counter. This does not mean they will just counter, but it will mean they will be slightly more cautious whilst being able to attack like you wish.

With these changes I would recommend this:



GK (Defend)

FbL (Support), CD (Defend), CD (Defend), WingbackR (Attack)

BBM (Support), DLP (Defend)

WL (Attack), APM (Support), IFR (Support)

CF (Attack)

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