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Old 06-10-2011, 05:54   #21
Fiero
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As previously mentioned, the most missed players out of the injured bunch are Robinho, Rino, and Boateng (pre-Juventus). They have been replaced by Cassano, Nocerino, and Seedorf/Aquilani/Emanuelson.

Robinho vs Cassano:

Robinho is a vital cog in the system. Going forward, he offers fluid movement, great link up play, and opens up spaces for Seedorf, Ibra, and Zambrotta.

Cassano on the other hand has different characteristics. He is generally more static and thus doesn't offer Robinho's movement nor opens up space for teammates. His link up play is almost non-existent when partnered with Pato, and though the chemistry is a bit better with Ibrahimovic it still doesn't match what Robinho offers.

Defensively, Robinho covers a lot of ground putting pressure on opponents' back line. Cassano offers close to zero effort.

Rino vs Nocerino:

Rino lives to win back the ball. That's what he does best. Almost no one in the world matches him at this job so it's no surprise that Nocerino is a downgrade in this aspect. Nocerino covers a lot ground, -so does Rino- probably much more than anyone in our team. But how much of it is effective? He closes down space very well and so theoretically half of his job is done well. But in terms of winning back the ball, Nocerino is not the man for that role.

In the attacking phase, both offer next to nothing as their technique and creativity is poor. Though it should be noted that Nocerino's crosses are good, even better than Abate's (granted that's not saying much, but still).

Boateng vs Emanuelson:

I already discussed the requirements of a certain type of player in the AM position in Allegri's system, thus only Emanuelson matches the criteria. Emanuelson doesn't offer half of Boateng's movement as he sticks to the center most of the time and looks clueless. The few times he drifts to the right end in us losing possession as his decision making is even worse than Boateng's. Boateng has good dribbling, excellent movement, and an amazing energy. Emanuelson's dribbling might be his best asset but it's still average at best, his movement is amateurish, and he doesn't come near Boateng's energy levels.

Defensively, Boateng is an important factor in pressing the opposition and committing fouls, while Emanuelson just covers some ground without really contributing usefully.

--

Rino's absence caused some weaknesses in the system. As we concluded that Nocerino isn't a natural ball winner, many times van Bommel is forced to push higher up than normal in order to win the ball back, and the many times he fails exposes the team at the back. Allegri and Nesta tried to limit that by playing a higher than usual line of defense. That could explain Silva's below par form.

Robinho's and Boateng's absences robbed the team of vital movement upfront. Instead of the fluid movements, the team is stuck with the static Cassano. In Robinho -not Ibrahimovic-, the team had the attack composer who distributed the ball smartly. Cassano more often than not loses possession, and his static nature harms the team in two ways. The first is that Ibrahimovic doesn't have much space to roam around freely as he usually does, while Robinho and Boateng would have created space with one linking up with Ibra and the other cutting in, Cassano occupies a certain area outside the penalty box that limits Ibra's movement and thus the team is either left without a presence in the box, or with a limited Ibra. The second is that with his lack of movement, the team's passing options are limited. As he doesn't get into useful places, nor does he open up space that a team-mate -mainly Seedorf, Emanuelson, Zambrotta, or Ibra- would advance to.

So these three absences could partly explain the disappointing results. Of course other factors played a part as well, but the importance of these players to the system and the failure of their replacement(s) to play the same roles did harm the team.
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Old 06-10-2011, 10:15   #22
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The positive I see on that is that it maximizes Ibra and also Seedorf. He reborned as a player in this role last season. And I still think Aquilani can do it very well. Boateng drive proved to be very useful and Milan benefited from his physicality.
Yup, at the end of the day, we are trying to tweak a bit too early. Aquilani should start ahead of a tired Seedorf, and I'm reasonably certain we'll get back to form.

Boateng wasn't fully fit against Juve, and it is only fair to give him the benefit of doubt considering how well he did his role last season.
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Old 06-10-2011, 16:34   #23
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Nice thread and posts, Fiero.
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Old 06-10-2011, 16:40   #24
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Yup, at the end of the day, we are trying to tweak a bit too early. Aquilani should start ahead of a tired Seedorf, and I'm reasonably certain we'll get back to form.

Boateng wasn't fully fit against Juve, and it is only fair to give him the benefit of doubt considering how well he did his role last season.
MAybe, but the Jube and Napoli games were worrisome, our inability to win back the ball and hold possession is a bigger issue that MVB/Nesta's supposed decline or Thiago's form. If the opponent has the ball nonstop and is driving out you, you'll eventually get exposed.

And honestly, while no Robinho, and no fit Boateng has made Milan incredibly static up-top.... No Gattuso looks sorely missing in midfield. Yes he's by no means a ball player, but he wins back a ridiculous amount fo tackles and covered a lot of ground effectively. Nocerino covers same ground with little impact. I think that's been biggest problem with MVB. Not so much him, but without Gattuso chasing down the ball, it forces MVB to and that leds to gaps and holes.

So are we Gattuso dependent in midfield? Maybe more than initially suggested. No flamini hurts. While overpaid and not the ball-winner Rino is, he's was still more effective than Nocerino at all aspects of the game in 2nd of the year. Winning the ball, pressing effectively, passing.

That's why I question allegri's decision to continually field a mindless energizer bunny in Nocerino, who only has a beard going for him, and neglecting Aquilani. Yes Aquilani is nowhere near the defender/worker nocerino is, but he is probably our best ball player. Him + Clarence at mezzala roles would allow us to control the ball a bit more, which would change the tactic of last year but would get the ball out of our half and off our back 4.


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Only Milan can punish it's own fans by qualifying for CL. I'm off to sleep, another year wasted. When will this fucker be fired..
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Old 07-10-2011, 06:18   #25
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So are we Gattuso dependent in midfield? Maybe more than initially suggested.
Most certainly we were. People under-rate him quite a bit around here. His offensive, yes Offensive, contribution has been quite good over the last couple of seasons (I dont mean goals or assists, but he gains control of areas in the other team's side of the pitch very well. And he is intelligent enough to use the 'positions' that he gains by linking up well with Abate who rushes by on the right, and Ibra/Pato ahead. That positional advantage is lost when Gattuso is absent)... I don't see Nocerino or Flamini or anyone else really matching what Gattuso provides in that position.

But we need to get out of that trap. Gattuso is old and it is very necessary for us to create a starting 4 in the midfield who won't retire or fall injured tomorrow.

Which is why Aquilani and Nocerino need starts - I dont care for transfer rumours, these are the players we have now and their contribution is vital.

I would be more patient on Noce. He did earn us a draw at Camp Nou - the only one left with the energy to push for a corner in the last minute. A bit more tactical awareness and he could contribute well to the campaign.

Patience.

Edit - (I agree with your points on Robinho to a large extent, although I certainly don't think he was as vital as Silva or Ibra. He keeps the team moving and that's important)

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Old 07-10-2011, 07:35   #26
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Nice thread and posts, Fiero.
Thanks. You should contribute too, you must have learned something about football from all those defeats your team receive.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:23   #27
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Thanks. You should contribute too, you must have learned something about football from all those defeats your team receive.
I actually quoted you yesterday (about robinho vs. cassano) and wrote a piece about it. But then my computer froze and everything disappeared.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:42   #28
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I actually quoted you yesterday (about robinho vs. cassano) and wrote a piece about it. But then my computer froze and everything disappeared.
That is probably your computer's way of telling you how stupid your writing was.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:54   #29
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That is probably your computer's way of telling you how stupid your writing was.
stop trolling your own "trolling-free" thread.
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Old 07-10-2011, 16:41   #30
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Most certainly we were. People under-rate him quite a bit around here. His offensive, yes Offensive, contribution has been quite good over the last couple of seasons (I dont mean goals or assists, but he gains control of areas in the other team's side of the pitch very well. And he is intelligent enough to use the 'positions' that he gains by linking up well with Abate who rushes by on the right, and Ibra/Pato ahead. That positional advantage is lost when Gattuso is absent)... I don't see Nocerino or Flamini or anyone else really matching what Gattuso provides in that position.

But we need to get out of that trap. Gattuso is old and it is very necessary for us to create a starting 4 in the midfield who won't retire or fall injured tomorrow.

Which is why Aquilani and Nocerino need starts - I dont care for transfer rumours, these are the players we have now and their contribution is vital.

I would be more patient on Noce. He did earn us a draw at Camp Nou - the only one left with the energy to push for a corner in the last minute. A bit more tactical awareness and he could contribute well to the campaign.

Patience.
Your points on Gattuso make me want to kiss you.

I thought he was criminally underrated around this forum last year. Milan would need a complete different style of playing (which the rest of squad at allegri's disposal made impossible) to play consistently without him.

Like I said before on Nocerino. Positive depth player. Reliable in effort and ability. But I've seen enough of him, to think it's unlikely he'll ever improve to first team quality.

Flamini for instance, who I'm not too high on either, is a better option, for all his flaws positionally, and not being on par w/ rino tackling/ball winning, he's smarter in possession. More reliable, while doing enough in other facets.

Moving forward I'd love to scrap concept of pure ball-winner in midfield, put to do so we need to do a few things better, and main one is much higher work rate all around. If I could I'd sell either Nocerino or Flamini, keep on on lower wages, and sign a player like Vidal or Marchisio, endless lungs who does everything pretty well in CM, and is good on ball. I am hoping Boateng can become that player BUT he won't get the chance to show it until we get an AM and move him. I like Nianggolan at Cagliari.

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Edit - (I agree with your points on Robinho to a large extent, although I certainly don't think he was as vital as Silva or Ibra. He keeps the team moving and that's important)
I don't think we win a scudetto without Robinho. If we had Borriello stay, I don't think we win. I won't rank him in importance cause I think that gets overstated here. It's a team, it's all interconnected. you could say without Seedorfs form we don;t win either. Without Boateng etc. etc.

But one thing which does concern me....watching Silva/MVB/Nesta play without Rino makes me also wonder how overrated all 3s performances were last year. The 4 of them created an awesome defensive unit in spin of defense.


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Only Milan can punish it's own fans by qualifying for CL. I'm off to sleep, another year wasted. When will this fucker be fired..
#RnB
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Old 07-10-2011, 17:47   #31
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Does anyone think we can pull off a 3-5-2 ala Napoli?

Robinho (El Shaarawy) - Ibrahimovic (Pato)

Boateng (Cassano)

Taiwo - Seedorf (Aquilani) - Van Bommel (Nocerino) - Abate

Silva - Nesta - Mexes

Abbiati


I think, it is worth a try given our current personnel. Taiwo is probably our best crosser of the ball and a lesser defensive responsibility would mean he can concentrate more on attack. But this would also mean that Abate has to improve on his attacking.

Robinho = Lavezzi (Similar roles in the team)

Ibrahimovic = Cavani (Could be kinda unconvincing considering Cavani moves around a lot and whether Pato would be better suited for the role)

Boateng = Hamsik (If only because both players are kind of direct in their attacking approach)

Seedorf = Inler (Creative yet defensively adept)

Van Bommel = Gargano (destroyer type tasked with breaking up plays while also being a decent passer)

Taiwo = Zuniga

Abate = Maggio

Of course, I don't mean that the players would be exactly similar, but more of having similar roles in the team. I know Inter tanked with their 3-5-2 but unlike them, I do think we have the personnel for it. I think it is worth a try against the small teams atleast....
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Old 07-10-2011, 19:03   #32
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@Ash,

I've given thought to the 3-4-2-1/3-4-1-2 or any variation of the 3-5-2 but our main problem will be up front with Ibra, he isnt suited for this kind of formation.

The defense would look solid, experience of Nesta and Mexes would go very well with the brilliance of Silva and the wing-backs are fine as well. Abate has been defensively disciplined by Allegri/Tassoti and the only issue he would have is his inability to attack properly, still feel that his running at players on the flank/putting in cross are very under par. As for Taiwo, its the opposite, his attacking skills are of good value but his defensive positioning is pretty weak atm. Not saying that they cant improve, of course they can but for the moment its a no go for Taiwo, Abate would probably manage.

In midfield most of the problems will occur, this type of formation relies on the defensive responsibility of the 2 CMs, one of which as you mentioned could be a destroyer [Gargano] and the other a sort of good passer of the ball [Inler] and in our case as you posted it could be MvB and Seedorf [Aquilani]. Now imagine this, Taiwo attacking on that left wing and he gets tackled off the ball and they break from that side, do you really think two 34+ year olds can contain that counter? I certainly dont and Aquilani isnt meant for that kind of role either. Keeping MvB and a younger/more energetic Nocerino could pull it off but they would have the same issue Napoli had last year with play any two from Yebda/Gargano/Pazienza and in big games, the midfield couldn't sustain pressure nor could their wing backs [refer to matches against Udinese]

We would really need better personnel for such a formation, specially at CM. Needs to be a combo who are well accustomed to the flat 4.4.2 for example, both should be able to do the dirty work and one has to be able to pass the ball properly. This is the issue that Napoli have corrected this season by getting Inler. We would need to correct the same issue before implementing this system.

In attack its very simple, flog Ibra and that system could work, put Robinho and Boateng/some other attacking mid behind Pato and it will be sweet. SES92 could play in that role pretty well too I think. Ibra as the lone ranger upfront in this system is a disaster waiting to happen, he will slow things down when he received the ball and wont even make enough runs, its will probably turn in to a long ball style of game. No need for this system for that to happen, it can be done now, put Seedorf at LCM and Ibra as CF.

With our current side it definitely wont work and Allegri doesnt seem like the flexible, risk taker kind. We would need to make improvements in personnel to make it work.

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Old 07-10-2011, 19:31   #33
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@Ash,

I've given thought to the 3-4-2-1/3-4-1-2 or any variation of the 3-5-2 but our main problem will be up front with Ibra, he isnt suited for this kind of formation.
Why do you think so?

Ibra's main issue is when he's isolated as a lone forward. He doesn't move enough IMO and he's slowish on ball for a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 type of look. He gets too isolated. It's when there's a 2 striker system or players close to him, he thrives w/ his link up play.

The idea of a 3 man w/ wingbacks higher up would benefit him cause he can work with wide service. There are few who are better at chesting down longballs/crosses and controlling them, flicking it on to other forward or shooting himself.

What I'd worry about with Ibra is like a 4-3-3 with wide wings


I still like the idea of moving Thiago to midfield and mexes to defense and creating a fluid system which interchanges between a 4 man, a 3 man with silva dropping back etc.


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Only Milan can punish it's own fans by qualifying for CL. I'm off to sleep, another year wasted. When will this fucker be fired..
#RnB
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Old 10-10-2011, 18:38   #34
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Why do you think so?
I still like the idea of moving Thiago to midfield and mexes to defense and creating a fluid system which interchanges between a 4 man, a 3 man with silva dropping back etc.
I'm sorry but I just don't see the potential of Thiago being a good/decent midfield at all. He couldn't distribute the ball the well except some long balls. That was really proved the last season especially in the match vs Tottenham. He's just an awesome defender and that's it . That's where we need him
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Old 10-10-2011, 19:49   #35
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I'm sorry but I just don't see the potential of Thiago being a good/decent midfield at all. He couldn't distribute the ball the well except some long balls. That was really proved the last season especially in the match vs Tottenham. He's just an awesome defender and that's it . That's where we need him
you know for a guy who 'couldn't distribute the ball' he did lead the team in passes, passes completed and balls recovered the weeks he played midfield, so I don't see a major problem.

no denying he was missing some of subtleties of midfield. But that's normal considering it was makeshift.

The midfield is so porous, and with Mexes coming back, we got a quality Cb, i still think it's absolutely worth it.

This midfield is so shitty, we can't hold a ball for more than 2 passes and MVB has been pretty disappointing, it's forcing our defense to be on it's backheels all match. Thiago in a more advanced position will help that.

Gazetta agrees too


The only problem with Thiago at DM was lack of depth at CB. Mexes would help that.


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Old 11-10-2011, 05:48   #36
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you know for a guy who 'couldn't distribute the ball' he did lead the team in passes, passes completed and balls recovered the weeks he played midfield, so I don't see a major problem.

no denying he was missing some of subtleties of midfield. But that's normal considering it was makeshift.

The midfield is so porous, and with Mexes coming back, we got a quality Cb, i still think it's absolutely worth it.

This midfield is so shitty, we can't hold a ball for more than 2 passes and MVB has been pretty disappointing, it's forcing our defense to be on it's backheels all match. Thiago in a more advanced position will help that.

Gazetta agrees too


The only problem with Thiago at DM was lack of depth at CB. Mexes would help that.
Problem is that Nesta needs to be rested (and will probably need more rest as the season passes by) so our CB pair would consist of what exactly? Yepes - Mexes with Silva as DM? I don't know how fast Mexes is but it feels like that would be kinda hard on the counters against fast paced teams. Silva is basically what keeps us from being countered to death when we face these kind of teams.

Might work against teams like Chievo Verona and Bologna but I have a hard-time seeing it working against bigger, better and faster teams.


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Old 11-10-2011, 08:07   #37
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I think something along the lines of:

-------------------Pato
----------Robinho-Cassano
-------Seed/Aqua-Bom/Boa
Taiwo--------------------------Abate
----------Nesta-Silva-Mexes

could work quite well. Not necessarily move Silva into midfield, but give him the freedom to push up a little when we are in possession and our fullbacks have pushed up. Abate and Taiwo would also have the pace and stamina to get back quickly if needed.

We could have it such that when we are in possession on the left, Taiwo pushes up, Abate pushes up when the ball is in possession on our right, and they are both slightly deep when the ball is with Seedorf or Bommel, as that would give them space in front of them to run into.

Robinho has the dribbling to trouble defences, play the quick one-two with Pato or Cassano and move in towards goal. Few can pick a pass like Cassano. So that would also be of good up front without hogging the ball ala Ibra.

We would have a fluid system like the rest of the European elite. I mean, there is no big team in Europe that can now afford to play with an ultra rigid attack like the one we have (think Real, Barca, ManU, Bayern, etc.) right now. It just doesn't work that way anymore, I guess. At least, we don't have the players. Our advantage would mostly have to be tactical.

Yes, it'd push Ibra to the bench, but this is just a basic idea. Allegri should be able to work Ibra in, just as he could put Boateng in place of Cassano for defensive stabillity if need be.

Taiwo and Abate would push high up the pitch to give us width. Another potential advantage with this would be that it would give us width in possession, meaning that it would be easier to hold on to possession. Our lack of wide outlets is also a major reason for our difficulty in holding on to possession, I think. I mean, when Seedorf or Boss is under pressure in midfield when they are in possession, there isn't a wide player they could pass the ball to, and ends up having to make midfield splitting passes to our attackers, which is a much more difficult pass to make, making them more vulnerable to losing the ball to the opposition. The other option they'd have is to pass to the centre backs, which is useless to our attacking scheme of things. Instead, if we have fullbacks that can push up, that is one more option for our central midfielders when they are under pressure, and there tends to be more space out wide, making it an easier pass to make.

And before pointing to Inter's failure with a similar setup, take a moment to think about their personnel. They had fucking Chivu at centre back and Sneidjer at central midfield (?), and their wingbacks were a lot slower than ours would be, in getting back to defend. And that is before considering our attacking talent, experience and pace. Just an idea..


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Old 11-10-2011, 12:28   #38
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A simple reason why 3-man defence would be difficult to execute for the current squad is that Abate, Zambrotta, Taiwo et al aren't really as good as the players you require to pull it off. Wingbacks are the most crucial elements - they need to lead counters, defend against wing forwards and help out in the midfield as well. They need to rapidly transition between the things they need to do - like Maggio does. If you have such wingbacks, you almost always end up with a numerical advantage vs the opposite team in every part of the pitch, no matter what formation they play (Unless it is the same, obviously). Classic example was the City vs Napoli game.

Abate and Zambrotta are most certainly not good enough as wingbacks. I haven't seen enough of Taiwo, but I really doubt if he is. If we play against City with these guys instead of Maggio/Zuniga, Silva, Nasri, Aguero would most likely have a field day.

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Old 11-10-2011, 14:21   #39
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A simple reason why 3-man defence would be difficult to execute for the current squad is that Abate, Zambrotta, Taiwo et al aren't really as good as the players you require to pull it off. Wingbacks are the most crucial elements - they need to lead counters, defend against wing forwards and help out in the midfield as well. They need to rapidly transition between the things they need to do - like Maggio does. If you have such wingbacks, you almost always end up with a numerical advantage vs the opposite team in every part of the pitch, no matter what formation they play (Unless it is the same, obviously). Classic example was the City vs Napoli game.

Abate and Zambrotta are most certainly not good enough as wingbacks. I haven't seen enough of Taiwo, but I really doubt if he is. If we play against City with these guys instead of Maggio/Zuniga, Silva, Nasri, Aguero would most likely have a field day.
Spot on. Also Milan don't have a CM duo that are comfortable in both attack and defense. van Bommel is too slow imo to play that far forward but okay let's say him and partnered with whom? Seedorf? Would be the slowest CM duo in Europe. Nocerino? Too dumb, won't take the ball forward. Aquilani? Doubt he has the legs to handle that much defensive burden along with the attacking duties. Emanuelson/Boateng? Yeah right.
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Old 11-10-2011, 20:48   #40
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Originally Posted by LoLInter View Post
Problem is that Nesta needs to be rested (and will probably need more rest as the season passes by) so our CB pair would consist of what exactly? Yepes - Mexes with Silva as DM? I don't know how fast Mexes is but it feels like that would be kinda hard on the counters against fast paced teams. Silva is basically what keeps us from being countered to death when we face these kind of teams.

Might work against teams like Chievo Verona and Bologna but I have a hard-time seeing it working against bigger, better and faster teams.
Which is why I don't think we should do it game in game out. But Mexes, if he returns to full health is too good to bench.

I'd say a 4 man rotation among 3 spots to keep botH MVB and Nesta fresh. When we rest MVB- move Thiag to midfield. Occasionally use all 4 and use MVB a little higher. Still think this is our best 11-

------------Zlatan
-------Robi--Boateng
-------MVB---See/Aqui
------------Thiago
Taiwo--Nesta--Mexes--Abate


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Originally Posted by ACmen View Post
Only Milan can punish it's own fans by qualifying for CL. I'm off to sleep, another year wasted. When will this fucker be fired..
#RnB
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