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Old 27-11-2020, 10:37   #503
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Join Date: Aug 2015

Originally Posted by ToonInvader View Post
I thought this was a particularly poor performance tbf. There's no need to be overly pessimistic or anything but a great deal of what we do on the pitch just does not add up into a visibly functioning, efficacious play. Like, a lot happens on the pitch (a lot of running etc.) but out of 10 passes that are not just between bennacer-kjaer-gabbia or from one full back up to the other, at least half of those passes or moves are either aimless long balls or missed short passes between ill-positioned players. The link-up play between the defensive mid and the attacking midfield is really poor. And it has been like since, well, a very long time.

Hypothesis: when we play well it seems like we're playing an actual 4-4-2 with the AM gravitating around Zlatan to provide the last passe or be in a shooting position opened up by Zlatan himself playing the pivot.

Our wingers don't cut inside and shoot as you'd see in a 4-2-3-1. A great deal of our direct attacking plays comes either from direct crosses or vertical runs with short, last-minute passes in the box. Rebic does not cut inside, Leao does a bit more but mostly in counter-attacks and Castillejo tries a lot but fails

I fail to see (I might be wrong) that we're actually using the system of a 4-2-3-1. We clearly do in non-possession phases (even there we're closer to a 4-4-1-1)

I feel like an effective 4-2-3-1 needs a lot of action from the AM in the center of the pitch, dictating the tempo etc. My impression is that TCHALA' either plays too close to the midfield line or too close to the CF. I don't see any AM acting like an AM.

I might be wrong but I don't see us using all the resources of a 4-2-3-1.
The Lille game was an exception. We played closer to a 343 in possession, probably to leave a fast defender (Dalot) next to Kjaer to avoid having him be exposed on the break. It sort of worked defensively but the fact that Dalot barely crossed the halfway line meant we're a lot more predictable. Hakan played mostly on the right to compensate, which left gaps in the middle and no one to pass to.

Also without Ibra we had no easy outball so we kept passing it around in the back waiting for an opening that never really happened.
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