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Solskjaer tactic at Manchester United

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On 10/02/2019 at 12:16, Robson 07 said:

In other words something like this (ignore a couple of names in the lineup e.g. Mata not Lingard).  Also I'm aware most people prefer a Mez underlapping a Winger but for me it was the roles used in that game.

226123824_ManchesterUnited_Overview-3.thumb.png.55c9d084ad22af532455de5b06df5f7b.png

I have tried this at Tottenham and it seems to work pretty well for me as well.

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1 hour ago, Mr_Demus said:

I have tried this at Tottenham and it seems to work pretty well for me as well.

Thanks for the feedback.  I'm imagining Dele Ali as the Mez?  He'd lap that up.

Edited by Robson 07

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9 minutes ago, Robson 07 said:

Thanks for the feedback.  I'm imagining Dele Ali as the Mez?  He'd lap that up.

Yeah, but he hasn't been performing very well. Considering buying a new MEZ and move Alli to the IF

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What do people think of the F.A. Cup / big game shape Solskjaer seems to favour, a 442 diamond?

I think from the last game it would be Attacking mentality (because the defenders weren't kicking it long like on a lower mentality, and in the final third we were quite direct). 

Perhaps something like this in terms of roles:

860387443_Screenshot2019-02-20at17_10_02.thumb.png.fb8ca5cc0e847b4ff2b4428e84df274c.png

As for instructions, the only one I know for sure I'd want is Pass Into Space.

You could argue that Matic isn't a playmaker and I wouldn't disagree, similarly about Mata's duty and Lukaku's role (STCR), this was just based on what I felt from watching the full 90 minutes and a glance at WhoScored's average position map (which is what made me put DCR on St duty). 

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6 hours ago, zlatanera said:

What do people think of the F.A. Cup / big game shape Solskjaer seems to favour, a 442 diamond?

I think from the last game it would be Attacking mentality (because the defenders weren't kicking it long like on a lower mentality, and in the final third we were quite direct). 

Perhaps something like this in terms of roles:

860387443_Screenshot2019-02-20at17_10_02.thumb.png.fb8ca5cc0e847b4ff2b4428e84df274c.png

As for instructions, the only one I know for sure I'd want is Pass Into Space.

You could argue that Matic isn't a playmaker and I wouldn't disagree, similarly about Mata's duty and Lukaku's role (STCR), this was just based on what I felt from watching the full 90 minutes and a glance at WhoScored's average position map (which is what made me put DCR on St duty). 

I'd be wary of having the Mez on an attack duty, especially with the attacking mentality. I'd also put the right wingback on attack because the CAR will be providing cover.

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18 minutes ago, Hoosier_76 said:

I'd be wary of having the Mez on an attack duty, especially with the attacking mentality. I'd also put the right wingback on attack because the CAR will be providing cover.

Well I kinda hope the CAR will cover for the MEZ. And on an Attacking mentality WB-Su has a Positive mentality anyway, so WB-At is probably too much. Young didn’t seem to be that aggressive either

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I don't think, in FM terms, it was anything particularly special. So like the actual match you might have to rely on moments of individual brilliance. Tbh even in the 2nd half Utd offered next to nothing going forward and struggled to keep hold of the ball.

Defensively it's the best I've seen Utd in a long time vs a 'good' side even ignoring how easy Chelsea may have made it. 

The fluid counter-attack preset instructions are impressively accurate imo, I've only made minimal changes to those.

Pogba and Lukaku are probably the most debatable roles. I only remember either drifting out wide once or twice each though so I'm loath to give them the MEZ or DLF roles respectively. I think I'm comfortable making Pogba a CAR as defensively it was one of his more disciplined displays, the stay wider PI is still applicable, whilst I'm willing to put his individual interpretation of the role down to his specific attributes and qualities as opposed to tactical instructions. - Get further forward could still be applied as optional PIs to both CMs, certainly first half.

Utd initially tried to press from the front but were quick to drop into a deeper defensive shape. In FM, I'd have a conservative D-Line and use aggressive closing down PIs on the front 3 probably to try and achieve as close to this as I can. 

4-4-2 diamond or 4-3-1-2 is also very debatable. 

 

Personally I'd prefer to increase the mentality if I was going to use this in FM. 

 

Screenshot (338).png

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@Had_Enough I can't really find fault in anything you're saying, but yeah in FM Cautious mentality probably doesn't translate to exactly how we'd want. I think CAR on Cautious particularly just isn't quite offensive enough for Pogba - perhaps DLP-Su? I was mostly looking at how we played in that attacking period - in a game that so embodies "its a game of two halves, lads!" I picked the more fun one.

For what its worth, testing my version with Ajax against PSV rendered the right sort of result - they had more possession, but few shots on target, whilst our MEZ. (Frenkie de Jong, who can't finish) got 2 assists in a 3-0 win. 

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20 minutes ago, zlatanera said:

@Had_Enough I can't really find fault in anything you're saying, but yeah in FM Cautious mentality probably doesn't translate to exactly how we'd want. I think CAR on Cautious particularly just isn't quite offensive enough for Pogba - perhaps DLP-Su?

Inclined to agree but think Pogba only plays as a Mezzala, in every game.  For me Rashford slightly more toward a complete forward support and Lukaku a poacher as he has become as lazy player but with the instruction stay wider which draws him to the flank and opens space for the attacking mid which suits Lingard when he plays that role.

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2 hours ago, Robson 07 said:

Inclined to agree but think Pogba only plays as a Mezzala, in every game.  For me Rashford slightly more toward a complete forward support and Lukaku a poacher as he has become as lazy player but with the instruction stay wider which draws him to the flank and opens space for the attacking mid which suits Lingard when he plays that role.

Yeah he's hard to nail down because we definitely look to play through him - could almost be RPM. I'm not sure if Lukaku is lazy or just was tired under Mourinho and now Solskjaer has tended to play him high and wide to affect the opposition LB - because Marcos Alonso gets caught upfield, or against Arsenal to keep Kolasinac from getting too far forward. He could perhaps even be a WTM-At on the right. If you kept Rashford in the STCL slot as a CF-Su like you said that could be an interesting way of imitating it. 

On defensive corners I'm not sure if Rashford would be set to Edge of Area or Stay Forward to copy how he was our outlet in the last match.

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Pogba definitely does not play in the carrilero role. The most "defensive" role he might sometimes play is BBM, but his regular role is mezzala IMO. He can also be utilized very nicely as a RPM.

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To clarify I'm talking only about the Chelsea game.

I find the certainty here interesting as despite he and Utd having so little of the ball I struggle to remember many if any bursting runs of his. For me it's nowhere near as clear cut as being suggested. Herrera also got forward on rare occasion but the CAR fits here? I wonder if his greater defensive visibility, preconceived ideas on the players and the unfashionable nature of the role play some part. I still think it was probably Pogba's most disciplined defensive performance and that he helped close down passing lanes very effectively.

I also don't really remember the ball going through Pogba a lot or him dictating play. One or two actions/plays surely aren't a basis for a role. Where do we draw the line between tactical instruction vs individual quality and ability? The MEZ seems way too expansive for me though in that game. 

IMO the Chelsea game was Solskjaer's biggest tactical success so far and a lot of it was down to defensive contribution of the entire midfield. 

 

I also don't agree with the sweeping statement re. only ever playing in one role either. Pogba was much more of a play-maker versus Spurs and Arsenal. Not really that controversial considering they played on the break and Pogba's passing initiated a lot of the moves. You can't over-generalise with Utd atm, tactically, they're far too flexible - Single main reason why for me, he deserves the job.  

 

 

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14 minutes ago, Had_Enough said:

I also don't really remember the ball going through Pogba a lot or him dictating play.

19 minutes ago, Had_Enough said:

I also don't agree with the sweeping statement re. only ever playing in one role either. Pogba was much more of a play-maker versus Spurs and Arsenal.

A mezzala doesn't dictate play.  They get forward, take risks, move into channels and roam.  Pogba does all those things - he pulls to the left; has been getting into the box; assisting and scoring goals.  Under Mourinho he was sometimes asked to play differently to that but often did his own thing which stood out most notably when used in 2-man midfields leading to (fair) accusations of him going missing defensively.  Arguably he played a support role against Chelsea with Mata being a tip to the diamond but without an attacking midfielder ahead its maybe more an attack duty but I agree that I/we are getting too picky at this point.  Like you, I feel that Solsjkaer is allowing Utd to be more fluid now and is playing more to Pogba's strengths with everyone happy as a result.

 

 

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32 minutes ago, Robson 07 said:

A mezzala doesn't dictate play.  They get forward, take risks, move into channels and roam.  Pogba does all those things - he pulls to the left; has been getting into the box; assisting and scoring goals.  Under Mourinho he was sometimes asked to play differently to that but often did his own thing which stood out most notably when used in 2-man midfields leading to (fair) accusations of him going missing defensively.  Arguably he played a support role against Chelsea with Mata being a tip to the diamond but without an attacking midfielder ahead its maybe more an attack duty but I agree that I/we are getting too picky at this point.  Like you, I feel that Solsjkaer is allowing Utd to be more fluid now and is playing more to Pogba's strengths with everyone happy as a result.

 

It depends what you want from a MEZ. I understand it to have potential as a secondary/quasi-playmaking role (not my language, heard it described here that way) as well as the channel movement. You're right it can also be interpreted primarily in a more 'mobile way' too. The player's qualities will decide which route he veers towards usually but lets face it Pogba can do it all. It's why I tried to cover both bases by mentioning movement and dictating of play due to the different interpretations of the role and Pogba's breath of qualities. But even approaching it from both angles I'm still not sold :lol: (only versus Chelsea). 

If anything that could be used to support your notions of him as a MEZ more though, certainly versus Spurs & Arsenal but I'd still argue the deep-lying nature of his positioning and the lack of movement in the final third in those games makes him much more of a play-maker.

 

What I will say is it's a thankless task trying to pigeon-hole players IRL in general, let alone someone as complete as Pogba. And even more so in FM terms. IMO anyone trying to do so, like we are, are just on different scales of wrong. It's fun though cos I like to try and strive for realism in my tactics. 

Edited by Had_Enough

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Speaking specifically about the Chelsea game - which I agree was a tactical master-class by the OGS - I think (not claim) that Pogba played as a BBM, Herrera as CAR and Matic (DM) as DLP on defend. 

The formation definitely was a narrow 442 diamond, but that's something I believe we all agree about :thup:

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7 minutes ago, Experienced Defender said:

Speaking specifically about the Chelsea game - which I agree was a tactical master-class by the OGS - I think (not claim) that Pogba played as a BBM, Herrera as CAR and Matic (DM) as DLP on defend. 

The formation definitely was a narrow 442 diamond, but that's something I believe we all agree about :thup:

Noticed quite often rashford would act like a winger or even a Raumdeuter moving into the channels when having space wide when alonso was unseen. From their average positions you could say that pogba took the mezzala role quite literal as lukaku was fairly deep and close to mata but thats because mata was on jorginho all game. Pogba was in the vertical spaces for example his cross to herrera just on the corner of the box but when defending he acted like a BBM, he pushed up a lot further to nullify their short passing as lukaku was deep and mata moved into a false 9 role at times while rashford defended wide. Herrera was more of less a shuttler between the mids but he did mention his side was exploited during the interview which I didn't see him do quite often but his touch map would suggest so. 

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1 hour ago, BigV said:

lukaku was fairly deep and close to mata but thats because mata was on jorginho all game

Absolutely. And this shows how intelligent was OGS' decision to mark Jorginho out of the game via Mata :thup:

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39 minutes ago, Experienced Defender said:

Absolutely. And this shows how intelligent was OGS' decision to mark Jorginho out of the game via Mata :thup:

Although I commend him for it, it's a fairly easy decision when you know how they're going to play. But the manner he did it and created something out of  nothing with the formation change and adaptability was amazing, tactical master for the future for sure. 

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Herrera spoke about how he had a more attacking role than normal, and this was something that they’d worked on for the Chelsea game in particular, presumably as they don’t track runs from deep well. Arguably he was a BBM on this occasion rather than a CAR.

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2 hours ago, howard moon said:

Herrera spoke about how he had a more attacking role than normal, and this was something that they’d worked on for the Chelsea game in particular, presumably as they don’t track runs from deep well. Arguably he was a BBM on this occasion rather than a CAR.

I meant that but realised I worded it the very opposite lol. If you look at his challenges and recoveries they're deep into united's half almost like from a DM or 2CM formation. His touch map was looked quite even as a BBM but the width was quite apparent as he covered from the centre spot to the touch line almost operating between the defence and pogba's attacking line. You could argue that sounds like a roaming box to box or even Roaming playmaker, the thing is he's so underrated that he's disciplined and tactically aware for most roles in CM. No wonder barca were after him a while ago.  

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I'm surprised not many people seem to be suggesting the Roaming Playmaker role for Pogba. Totally understand that in more recent games he's been popping up in that left channel acting as a Mezzala but I'm thinking of the Pogba in Ole's early games where he was almost playing like a prime Yaya Toure bursting through the middle taking control of games, the description of the RP as the 'heartbeat of his team' seems to describe this Pogba to a tee in my opinion?

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1 hour ago, Romers said:

I'm surprised not many people seem to be suggesting the Roaming Playmaker role for Pogba. Totally understand that in more recent games he's been popping up in that left channel acting as a Mezzala but I'm thinking of the Pogba in Ole's early games where he was almost playing like a prime Yaya Toure bursting through the middle taking control of games, the description of the RP as the 'heartbeat of his team' seems to describe this Pogba to a tee in my opinion?

You could say that, I use him in that role on FM19 recently and does more than most of my CM's. However, he didn't dictate the game like roaming playmakers tend to do nor does the "support" equal a lot of attacks. Barely gets forward to score which he has done a lot and acts like a creative player which pogba is but most importantly an overall attacking player which the roaming playmaker seems to knock it down a notch or 2

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7 minutes ago, BigV said:

You could say that, I use him in that role on FM19 recently and does more than most of my CM's. However, he didn't dictate the game like roaming playmakers tend to do nor does the "support" equal a lot of attacks. Barely gets forward to score which he has done a lot and acts like a creative player which pogba is but most importantly an overall attacking player which the roaming playmaker seems to knock it down a notch or 2

Good to hear someone else has tried it, your explanation of what you noticed makes sense too actually! I'm currently thinking Adv Playmaker - Attack with 'Get Further Forward' added would be a sensible option, encourages the team to use their playmaker and also gets him into advanced positions high up the pitch to have an impact

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4 hours ago, Romers said:

Good to hear someone else has tried it, your explanation of what you noticed makes sense too actually! I'm currently thinking Adv Playmaker - Attack with 'Get Further Forward' added would be a sensible option, encourages the team to use their playmaker and also gets him into advanced positions high up the pitch to have an impact

Don't forget Pogba has the Trait to get into opposition area which could help his forward runs if you give him a support duty role such as RPM.

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4 hours ago, Romers said:

Good to hear someone else has tried it, your explanation of what you noticed makes sense too actually! I'm currently thinking Adv Playmaker - Attack with 'Get Further Forward' added would be a sensible option, encourages the team to use their playmaker and also gets him into advanced positions high up the pitch to have an impact

That's the role I had him at but dropped a lot in form due to the long shot bug which made him unstoppable at times but now that it's toned in the PB 19.3 i had to adapt and he now makes decent chances as a RPM. Don't get me wrong the adv attack seems to make passes quite higher up so if the ball doesn't get to him then he's in trouble. I now see why they recommend deep lying-support but he can do so much more, mezzala fits perfect but must be with wingers otherwise it's contradictory to the roles.  

 

41 minutes ago, herne79 said:

Don't forget Pogba has the Trait to get into opposition area which could help his forward runs if you give him a support duty role such as RPM.

I personally think he's better as a support as the time he goes into opposition box is limited but does so at the right opportunity rather than being on attack and doing so with more room of failure to effect in the box. 

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On 11/01/2019 at 18:55, davidbarros2 said:

Anyone tried or had success recreating OGS tactic at Manchester United?
Started to thinking about it and decided to share my view so you can give me some feedback and spot any incoherences that I might have.

Team instructions:

  • Attacking
  • Slighty shorter passing
  • Higher tempo
  • Focus play down left
  • Play out of defense
  • Be more expressive
    (Perhaps shoot on sight?)
  • Counter-Press
  • Higher defensive line and much higher line of engagement
    (Perhaps standard defensive line and higher line of engagement?)
  • Prevent short GK distribution
  • Press slight more urgently

OI:

  • Fullback and wingbacks - pressing and direct to center (funnel inwards pressing)
  • Side midfielders and wingers - pressing and direct to line (funnel outwards pressing)
  • Central (defenders, defensive midfielders and midfielders) - marking

My intention is to force play through the sides, in defense the opposition would clear away or, if ball is played to the center of the field I would gain advantage due to marking and start a counter on the most dangerous zoneof the pitch.
On attack, I still want to force play through the sides but forcing the play to the line, cause the middle of the pitch would be the most dangerous zone - in this scenario - for my team.

Player roles:

De Gea - GK ( D )
Valencia - CWB ( S )
Baily and Lindelof - BPD ( D )
Shaw - WB ( S )
Matic - DLP ( D ) (on the center or at the DMCL spot?)
Herrera - CAR ( S ) at MCR spot or SV (S) at DMCR spot?
Pogba - MEZ ( A ) or CM ( A ) at CML spot?
Lingaard - AM (A) or AM (S) with get further forward at AMCR spot?
Martial - IF ( A )
Rashford - AF ( A )

So, anyone wanna join the discussion? I would appreciate your suggestions/feedback.
And I'm sorry in advance if something wasn't clear enough - I don't have all the answers, full of questions marks - and I don't play the game in english so I might fail some words here and there...

I try here:

Swk-d
WBS - CD - BPD - FBA
DLPD
CMC-MezellaS
IFA - IFS
CA

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