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ceefax the cat

The one-armed bandit

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Posted (edited)

Of all the tactics I've gone through on FM17, two of the most successful ones have been interestingly lopsided, using one wingback's domination of his flank (defending as DL/R and attacking as AML/R) as an excuse to remove the winger on his side and put an extra player somewhere else. The lopsided shape tends to draw defenders to one part of the field and leaves the far-side wide player in all kinds of delicious space. For example, I'm currently playing 4-3-3 with two strikers, like so: 

Screen_Shot_2017_06_24_at_12_11_30.png

Willems is more than capable of getting up and down quickly and often enough to be my AML when we're attacking (especially since Benteke holds the ball up so well), so I can play an extra striker next to Benteke. MCL compensates by holding his position and closing down a bit more to cover the big space in front of him. I think of the formation almost as '4-3-4'. The usual pattern is a long ball to Benteke, a lay-off to Tielemans and then either a ball down the wing for Delofeu to cross or a crossfield pass to Willems in space vs a hopelessly isolated fullback.

Similarly I had great success with Reggiana by playing '5-3-3', where the RWB is super attacking and usually the one to get in behind the defence after a combination on the left side:

Screen_Shot_2017_06_24_at_12_26_28.png

This approach also means you can play a very effective staggered defence. The defender on the CWB side can play as a stopper, closing down more, while the guy next to him, who is more protected, covers. The fullback on the opposite side has less space in front of him and can sit narrower and deeper, focusing more on supporting and feeding the winger. I'm experimenting with getting an MCd, anchor or HB to play slightly on the side of the stopper and drop into the gap when he goes hunting for the ball, but with mixed results so far.

Anyway, just a thought! Seems to work really well. It was partly inspired by 80's Newcastle when they had Chris Waddle and would line up 4-3-2, with Waddle added on whichever side they felt he could do most damage. With Everton I'm 4-3-2 with a choice of Deulofeu the flying right winger, Januzaj the tricky inside forward or left winger and a couple of others, and it's a matter of looking at the opposition and choosing whichever of them would give their weakest fullback the most nightmares.

Edited by ceefax the cat
added a bit

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LPQR   

welcome to the joys of asymmetric tactics :)

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Scrench   

Dani alves pretty much played like this under pep, with Messi acting in a more central role, Alves had all the space in the world and was running up and down the right side of the pitch.

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Rashidi   

Overloading one side of a pitch to unlock another is indeed one of the best ways to play the game. Asymmetric tactics certainly make it easier. One other way of doing is by using conventional systems with roles that draw players to the like the AP or roles that encourage overloads like the IWB.

Being a while since the cat showed its claws. WB 

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No sooner than I posted that, I got hammered 6-1 by Watford despite matching them in every statistical department, (they had 1 more CCC), my star goalkeeper decided to go into an enormous sulk about leaving despite nobody making any offers for him and my entire squad launched a mutiny for being lukewarm about James McCarthy's first team prospects. Think I'm going to resign and go for a job in Serie A so expect another lopsided variant very soon

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....and here we are:

Screen_Shot_2017_06_28_at_23_03_56.png

I have a glut of good centre-halves and defensive midfielders, my RWB is a lot more dangerous going forward than my LWB, I have a poacher and a target man who can play the killer pass but if I leave two up front I get the feeling (having just been promoted) that I'll have a hard time. So I bring the target man over to the left wing, shunt the midfield three over to the right a bit and have the RWB bomb on. Result: lots of long balls to the left wing where BBM supports target man and MR drifts over into the middle to receive. Meanwhile RB sneaks round the back and gets ready to cross.

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i've been thinking about implementing something like this in spain. have taken over barcelona in 2023 after generally cocking up at juventus in italy. they have a decent side but have just fallen out of top 2 for the first time. i like to build a team around 2 or 3 academy players everywhere i go and they have two: joan nieto, a silky, pacy winger and marc soler, a powerhouse of a winger who likes to put in a workmanlike performance. i was thinking of turning soler into a left inverted wing back and nieto into a left inside forward. i have two very, very good prospects at right wing back, two players who could really turn into world beaters, and i have davide calabria from milan there to attack the right side and tutor them for two or three seasons. 

 

will report back after a couple of games and probably ask for advice when things don't go as planned. here are the two wingers i was talking about: 

 

Screen Shot 2017-07-10 at 09.35.26.png

Screen Shot 2017-07-10 at 09.35.10.png

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Posted (edited)

and this is how i was thinking of lining up. i'm starting on standard/very fluid with only one instruction: low crosses. i only have midget strikers but everyone is pacy as hell so this seems a logical instruction. my left wing back has instructions to mimic an inverted wing back: cut inside with ball, sit narrower and run with ball more often. if it's not enough i might change his role to an actual inverted wing back but for now i want him to act more as a wing back cutting inside in the final third. 

 

 

Screen Shot 2017-07-10 at 09.47.51.png

Edited by wereldbol

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Kawee   
Posted (edited)

You could also go back to the 80s and do the Zona Mista.

 

200px-Zouna_mista.gif

Edited by Kawee

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Posted (edited)

Yes it's not a million miles from that / catenaccio is it? The first time I used that formation was with Reggiana and it did seem quite appropriate to be doing it with an Italian side.

I'm currently thinking of building a side that can play the 4-3-3 with two strikers AND the 5-3-2 / 5-4-1. Shouldn't be difficult.. one of the central defenders has to be able to play as a conservative fullback, the wingback on his side has to be able to play as a flying winger and the second striker has to be able to play on the wing on the other side. 

Plus if the winger/wingback can be retrained to play in the middle (bit like Malouda ended up doing at Chelsea), that can become a 4-4-2 diamond very easily.

Oh and if the more attacking central mid can also play on the left wing, it can be a flat 442 really easily as well. This could be fun

Edited by ceefax the cat

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How does your left side of defence hold up in your first post?

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Fine, but the players tasked with closing down that side need to be pretty decent at doing it. If MLC is lazy, or DL is poor one-on-one, we have a problem

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