52 thoughts on “Tactic talk – How are we shaping up for the new season?

  1. Nice article Prem. I do like a good tactics discussion every so often πŸ˜€

    I think we will line up in the 4-2-3-1 come the start of the season as it fits our best players into the team. Just need Pardew to get the mentality and gameplan right.

    Inverting the Pyramid is a cracking book on the history and evolution of football tactics. Well worth a read.

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  2. I agree with Santii, 4231 suits our players.
    ————————–Krul————————
    -Janmaat—-Willo—Colo—-Haidara-
    ————Colback———-Tiote————-
    -Sissoko———De Jong——-Cabella-
    ————————Riviere———————-

    Obviously Anita can sub in at holding midfield and the attacking midfielders can interchange position. Also any youngsters can be put in when needed and if we buy a better striker he can be ahead of Riviere but other than that this is how I see us lining up.

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  3. 3 at the back seems to be making a come back.

    Would always like 3 in the middle as this is where the game is generally won or lost but I do think 4-2-3-1 is a little outdated now so for me I would go 4-3-3 or 3-1-4-2

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  4. i agree Santi, or somewhere near similar, hopefully take the stress off the defence having good midfield cover, and deep lying support to attacks

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  5. Knowing Pardew it will probably be a 4-4-1-1 but in attacking phases that translates to 4-2-3-1.

    Outdated πŸ™„ πŸ˜† πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

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  6. I’d like to see us play the old Christmas tree formation – 4-3-2-1.
    I’m not gonna post the players (again) but I think we have a squad of players that could easily fit that formation and it could bring players like Benny in out of the cold.

    I think Pardew will like go 4-4-1-1 personally. He’s already said he sees SDJ as the new Sheringham, which suggests to me he’ll play him off a front man. I may be wrong.

    I’d like to maybe see Pardew go 3 at the back against City though. 3-5-1-1 maybe to try and get some control in that midfield. The last few times we’ve played them its been the wide players and Yaya who have won it for them, so hopefully having the extra bod in midfield may cause them more problems. My line up against City was posted by some else the other day and I can’t remember who so sorry for nicking it but here:

    ——————– Krul ——————
    —— Saylor – Willo – Colo ——
    Jan – Siss – Tiote – Col – Haidara
    —————— De Jong —————
    ——————- RiviΓ¨re —————–

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  7. Personally I would love to see 4 2 3 1 with the current players we have. Agree about signing Micah Richards or possibly we can sign a commanding centre back who can win the ball in the air and get the odd goal. If Pardew could sort things out with HBA I would play this team;

    Rivierre/ Cisse/ New Striker

    HBA/Aarons, De jong, Cabella

    Sissoko, Tiote

    Haidara, MYM/Colo , New centre back, Janmaat

    Krul

    When we defend we can drop back into a 4 5 1. Play Tiote as defensive mid and Sissoko as a box to box midfielder.

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  8. Fuck it!, my 4-3-2-1 as things stand would be:

    ——————- Krul ——————
    Jan – Saylor – Colo – Haidara
    — Sissoko – Tiote – Colback —
    —– De Jong —– Cabella —–
    —————- RiviΓ¨re ————–

    But I predict Pardew will go:

    ——————– Krul ——————
    Janmaat – Willo – Colo – Santon
    Sissoko – Tiote – Colback – Cabella
    —————— De Jong —————-
    ——————- RiviΓ¨re —————–

    Which will have some success, but IMO isn’t our best players in there best positions.

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  9. I see Lpool have signed Lovern from Saints. There is also talk that Arsenal are looking to sign Chambers from Saints and Spurs looking at Morgan thingy (sorry but I’m not even gonna try). I would be absolutely crushed if I was a Saints fans this summer like.
    That’s most of their team sold off now and they haven’t brought anyone in yet.
    I know they were competition last season, but I still find it sad to see.

    It’s way worse than our situation IMO. But I’m sure there will be some who disagree.

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  10. The problem is that choosing the formation now isn’t ideal as we don’t know the final squad. For instance I would be reluctant to set a formation up with 2 up front with the current squad because we only have two first team strikers in reality and one injury and out entire formation must change.

    Although all good teams are fluid and can change formations depending on the team they’re playing against. Liverpool did that really well last year I thought.

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  11. its not like they can even blame the owners for cashing in as its the players wanting to leave

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  12. Stu – Liverpool were brilliant at it last season. But then you have a Chelsea were they play the same formation every time, but the players are so well drilled they are still so difficult to play against.
    Unfortunately I don’t believe Pardew is a good tactician. If he was then I agree that we could change a formation to suit the opposition.

    Alan – you will always get 1 or 2 players have their heads turned, but theirs is up to about 7-8 now like.
    Wasn’t there a change to the ownership last season and of course MP left for Spuds.

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  13. If Shneiderlin follows Chambers out the door; They will have 16 players who have appeared in the premier league on their books including Reed and Gallagher who are teens, Three keepers and Osvaldo who is training on his own…

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  14. Good article, Prem (as always). I get the impression that you think think the simplistic numbers game is as futile as I do. The 442s and 4231s are shorthand for how to think about the strategies that will be implemented. Without the accompanying strategies they are almost meaningless.

    The real game is played in strategies that flow with the organic nature of football, like who is dropping back, going forward, interchanging; where the opposition are vulnerable; who is having a good game, is struggling, etc etc etc, and even more etceteras that are far too numerous and complex to cover adequately. And the coach needs to be aware of this for both teams on the park – because what the opposition is doing matters a lot.

    The starting formation is barely more than a line-up that only gives a very general indication of where a player will start the game. It says nothing about how the strategy might unfold or what individual roles are.

    Have you ever seen one of the coaches going through a folder when a sub is made? Those folders contain many variations of 442, 433, 4231, 343, and many many more. I’ve seen one. They can hold over 100 different strategy types, maybe dozens on 442 variations alone. They can have left-sided bias, right-sided attack, wide attacks, clustered defence, swarming, high press, and oh so many more.

    Those notes that Pardew takes are all about identifying appropriate strategies.

    You can’t just say: Jan, you’re at right back and we’re playing 433, and expect Jan to understand what is expected of him. Is he meant to force the opposition winger back or pull him forward so that his wide right mf can move into space on the flank? How far up the field is he supposed to be in transition? How wide? What’s happening on the left? (and add the usual etceteras)

    None of this is covered in formationspeak. In fact, on the face of it, in 433 Jan looks to be playing only a defensive game, yet most likely it will be expected that his average position at the end of the game will show him to be higher up the field than the defensive midfield player.

    235 is still my favoured way of looking at the world, where the 2 are genuine defenders the whole game, the 3 are wing backs and DM (or a quaterback who can defend and also initiate attacks, and even join in on them – this is where I used to play so I know it well) who move up and down, wide and central, and 4 of the 5 forwards drop back into midfield during defensive phases (the ‘inside forwards’ being box-to-box and playmaker and the ‘outside forwards’ tucking in in defensive situations and springing out wide in attack, possibly inverting, depending on who you are and what is meant to be achieved. And there’s 1 out-and-out forward, who may also drop back for extra cover or to lead a high press.

    So, after that long-winded preamble, I guess my favoured simplistic formation might also be considered to be 23131 ( or maybe it’s 4141, or is it 4411, or should that be 442 or 451 or even 541, possibly 235, it all depends on whether the team is attacking or defending or transitioning between the two.

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  15. No doubt that’ll be far too long and complex for Troy to understand. So I’ll expect a stupid comment about books from him.

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  16. Nice read Prem… cheers mate πŸ˜‰
    never been too interested in formation discussions tbh…. If anyone believes that their on paper team foramtion system will work has never really played the game to often.. the size of the opposition pitch needs to be considered.. how the opposition sets up needs to be considered. Opposition players need to be considered (who is strong- who is weak)… blah blah blah….
    Still it beats hypothetical discussions about whether we would be relegated without Remy’s goals last season! πŸ˜›

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  17. Morenotoon (@ 538 on last thread). Hope you enjoy Brisvegas. As for pubs, it really depends on where you are staying and what you want to do. I can’t say I know much about city drinking places, but I’ve had some good times in New Farm and clubs in The Valley, though they’re not my thing (but who knows, how old are you? Are you gay? You looking to score a babe? πŸ˜‰ ).

    I tend to go to the small so-called hipster bars in West End, where I’m often older than many of the patrons’ fathers. πŸ˜†

    Southbank is often good for a visit, some good eating places as well, not so sure about bars. I sometimes go to the Normanby Hotel when Brisbane Roar are playing away – it’s a big place, often packed, near the university (QUT, that is). Caxton Street can be a good night out, especially on weekends.

    I only really go out at weekends, so have little idea about what these places are like during the week.

    And let’s not forget that I’m 60yo, and didn’t grow up here, so there are probably many other places that are known only to the young locals.

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  18. Good points Bris, maybe we should look more at flexibility and how players will link up and compliment each other

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  19. Bris – I don’t think you’ve ever seen Pardews book. It won’t have that many different formations, but probably has a few pages dedicated to left backs… 😯

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  20. Nice read Prem, like the light hearted approach too πŸ˜‰ .

    Got to agree with Bris and Aussie, especially Bris, he is spot on imo. We can all chuck formations around on here but at the end of the day as Bris says it’s an organic thing ever changing, or at least it should be . That was my only gripe with Pards last season, that he didn’t seem flexible enough to change things up, a plan b,c and d if you like. He looks to have a few decent additions now so hopefully we will see more fluidity to our play.

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  21. Bris – you summed that up really well mate πŸ˜‰
    But you are right, a formation should be flexible based on how the game is panning out. I think most are posting how they would like to see us start out – because that would sort of suggest how we intend to play – defensively or offensively.
    I think the good thing about the new signing so far is that they can play in different positions allowing that flexibility.

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  22. Thanks All esp Kim & Bris. It’s not really about who plays where this season and in what formation, more a light-hearted piss-take of the seriousness with which we all take it. Bris is IMnshO is right that it is more about the roles that the individuals are given in the different phases of the game.

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  23. 4-2-3-1 as I mentioned on the previous thread. Still want another CB but not essential in that configuration with two DMs. Covers Colo’s lack of pace. Hopefully Riviere produces the goods but not sure yet. Good positioning but haven’t really seen him move.

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  24. Prem – wow so individual posts aren’t good enough for you. You have to put whole articles together to take the piss out of fellow bloggists – nice! πŸ˜‰

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  25. Been away for the weekend and now realise Remy is very old news. Who’s next for No 9? I bet both Lacazette and PEA could be forced away from their clubs if we really wanted it. Maybe though Riviere is the one they wanted all along . . .

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  26. Prem – I’m only yanking your chain mate πŸ˜‰
    I’m a regular formation poster and proud to admit it πŸ˜› But I’m not daft enough to think its set in stone. But when Pards and his coaching staff are preparing for games, they will start out with a basic formation.
    That’s what I generally post, coz I wouldn’t go as in depth as Bris for example – I’d expect to get slated πŸ˜†

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  27. Yes I know Sharpy. I’m as guilty of it myself. I just wasn’t wanting it to be “this is who should start and in this formation” I wanted a bit more fun. cos I am not enough of an expert to do it justice.

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  28. Personally I wouldn’t really want to play 4-2-3-1 as in my opinion it’s the worst of both worlds. Only have 2 in midfield and only 1 up front.

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  29. Ime with Aussie,you never get two games the same first you want 100% from each player form/tactics change as the game goes on,nothing should be set in stone IMO,other sides will change there form/tactics as the game goes on,of coarse you need a manager who is up to this job,mmmmmmmm

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  30. I had to admire Van Gaals changeable tactics at the WC. But you do need 11 players who understand what’s required and can adapt easily. Not sure how many like that we have in our squad in fact we have several players who can only play one position and one way e.g Tiote, Willo.

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  31. Spoken like a true tactician, Oz. πŸ˜‰

    I should add that I’m no tactician. I watch games as a fan, not as a coach. I don’t reall analyse games and, frankly, have no desire to do so. I like football for the emotional rollercoaster a team you support takes you on.

    So, I agree with Oz @ 34. I like to see players giving it their all.

    As usual I have no idea where Stuart is coming from (@33).

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  32. I don’t know much about complex football tactics beyond playing Championship Manager about 10 years ago…but it does seem to be a lot more complex that it did a few decades ago. Formations are no longer symmetrical, players fulfil multiple roles and can even switch on a regular basis.

    My two penneth is that we seem to be going for attacking full backs again so they have to work closely with the wide midfielders to getting crosses in while ensuring we aren’t left short at the back. It also looks like we have more goal threats that last season so that should make it harder for the opposition. In the first half of last season we had Remy, Cabaye and Goofy looking threatening but it was only really Remy in the 2nd half and that’s just no good at all.

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  33. I see QPR are furious with Liverpool over Remy’s failed medical. I’m not surprised because I would think it’s gonna knock a bit off his price now, or they’ll be stuck with him on high wages not really wanting to be there. Serves them right for snatching him from under our noses originally. πŸ‘Ώ

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  34. Aussie – how to kill a debate dead mate?!. Prem went to the effort of writing the article, Bris wrote war and bloody peace – and you come along and give it ‘I just want them all to try harder’ and that’s it finished!!.
    Who and argue with that?!, so fine everyone agree with Oz and move on!. Any got an Ashleys a **** article handy?! πŸ™„ πŸ˜†

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  35. I’m glad Remy failed his medical at Liverpool. Floppy chops will not be happy but the welcome to him.

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  36. Kim – tough **** for Old ‘Arry I say. Wasn’t he the tosser who made public Bas buy out clause and talks his floppy chops off about other clubs. Like you say, serves them right for offering him ridiculous wages in the first place.
    I can’t stand QPR, in fact I hate them!. Gutted they got promoted and hope they get relegated straight back down again!!.
    I read today that Glen Hoddle is being lined up to be Arrys new assistant 😯 That’ll just give me more reason to hate them!!.

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  37. Sharpy my two dislikes are Villa for the relegation gloating and more West Ham for their “We won the world cup” arrogance and academy of football crap. They are just a 2nd rate team from london.

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  38. not got a hate ashley article but got one with Toonsy that was written in response to Greg Dykes future or football. It’s my suggestions as what to reform. So that is ready to bore the socks off everybody.

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  39. How come there are no photos of Collocini hoisting that much coveted New Zealand Cup over his head ?

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  40. Prem – I didn’t like Villas gloating, but I think we had a bit of an arrogance going into that game – ie ‘all we have to do is beat or draw with Villa to stay up’. I think their gloating was a result of our disrespect to a point. But it still didn’t warrant such gloating like.
    West Ham are just boring. They are the ****ney barrow boy team. They are the jellied eels of the footballing world.

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  41. i didn’t like West Ham when they got away without points deduction for fielding Tevez and Mascherano when they were third party owned, felt they should have went down instead of Sheffield United, but then i was keen on Neil Warnock either as he looks like a Terrorhawk :mrgreen:

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  42. Prem always writes a good article. πŸ˜‰

    I never knew until now that he wasn’t a Geordie. That explains a helluva lot. πŸ™„

    No wonder we clash. πŸ˜›

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  43. My goodness grief 😯

    Purlease stop now about formations !
    Formations mean nothing. Seriously. They mean nothing. 😈

    Get over it. Purlease ! πŸ™„

    Stop it now! 😈

    The facts are, if you have quality players, then they should be able to beat a team of less talented players.

    Just give us 11 players that we can be proud of and do simple changes with tactics. Yes, formations, but don’t talk about formations when we don’t have the quality players to make formations work. 😯

    I despair πŸ™„

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