The Tactics Thread

Patri

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Any thoughts on 5-2-3?

Dinho - CF - Pato

Flam - DM

Anto-Silva-Nesta-Papa-Abate

CF could be Borri/Ibra.
DM could be KPB/Ambro/Pirlo.
Just giving Catenaccio a thought.
 

Patri

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No as in no to the formation, or no as in no thoughts on it?
 

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No as in no to the formation, or no as in no thoughts on it?

No to the formation, no to the time of thinking of it, no to having a discussion about it(waste of time).
 

necromancer

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Any thoughts on 5-2-3?

Dinho - CF - Pato

Flam - DM

Anto-Silva-Nesta-Papa-Abate

CF could be Borri/Ibra.
DM could be KPB/Ambro/Pirlo.
Just giving Catenaccio a thought.

Problems -
1. Nothing's gonna come from the centre. You can't expect only wingers to create moves.
2. KPB and Pirlo are not DMs. And I'm not keen on Flamini and Ambrosini being our only midfielders. Not exactly world-class.
3. This is not Catenaccio. Ronaldinho and Pato as side forwards is far from the idea of a Catenaccio.
4. A 3-6-1 (or a 5-4-1, however you choose to look at the wingbacks), would be a good modification of your formation, but I don't think it's exactly suited to the present-day game. Would get burned by pace.
 

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Real Cattenaccio is 5-3-2, I believe.. I was just modifying it to suit us. I was quite sure it wouldn't work out.. How might 5-3-2 work out in today's game? I'm just curious because I haven't really seen actual Catenaccio being played. Always have been fascinated by it, though.
 

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I’ve been holding off on posting this until the deal’s made official, but fuck it. I apologise for the self-indulgent length, but if I didn’t explain my worries about the signing in detail I would just be dismissed as a hater. I probably still will be, if anyone actually bothers to read it. Anyway…

Ronaldinho-Ibrahimovic-Pato looks terrifyingly good on paper, but I have serious concerns about whether Milan can get the best out of the three of them, both as individuals and as a unit. A lot will depend on the shape they adopt.

The front three was the compromise Leonardo arrived at last season in trying to get the most out of the forwards available to him, and he probably got it right. Ronaldinho made enough of a contribution from his favoured position on the left to justify the marginalising of Pato, who still managed a respectable goal tally.

However, that was with Borriello. Leonardo's system worked because the pretty boy played ugly as the workhorse of the front three; providing constant movement, occupying the centre backs and busting a gut to get on the end of Ronaldinho's crosses. These are essentially the same things Guardiola wanted Ibrahimovic to do for him at Barca, and that, for me, is precisely why he struggled there. The camel-faced one doesn't want to be a penalty box striker, and he certainly doesn't want to do any Borriello-style thankless running.

One of my personal obsessions, particularly with regard to Milan over the past few seasons, is the balance between passers and receivers, creators and runners. Borriello is a runner. Eto'o was a vital runner in Barca's system, and his replacement with the more static Ibrahimovic appeared to hinder them last season. I’m worried that Zlatan’s arrival may have a similar effect on Milan. There has to be a possibility that it could create an imbalance between creators and runners.

In order to redress that imbalance, Ibrahimovic could be told to play as a more orthodox striker, and he would more than likely get a very healthy number of goals (which would of course lead to people telling me I’m an idiot). For me, though, if you limit him to that, you're not really getting Ibrahimovic – you’re just getting a good goalscorer instead of a complete striker and a genius. I want to see the genius.

So, coming back to the subject of Milan’s shape, my fear is that a front three similar to that of last season would restrict all three star forwards: Ronaldinho would lack an ever-present target for his crosses, Ibrahimovic would be restricted and Pato sidelined.

The other obvious option is to play Ronaldinho in a central role behind an orthodox front two of Ibrahimovic and Pato. This is probably my favoured option, as I think the latter two would both benefit hugely from playing close together, with Pato feeding off Ibrahimovic’s lay-offs, knock-downs and through-balls. Potentially the best front two on the planet, to my mind. The problem is, of course, that Ronaldinho simply is not the same creative force when used as a trequartista as he is on the left.

I’m probably coming across as a negative bastard here. Ibrahimovic is a fantastic player and an impressive signing. I’m just not yet convinced that he’s the right signing. The potential is undoubtedly there though, and this will be a huge test of Allegri’s ability.

Here comes my attempt to remain the most self-indigence poster on the board. Yes. I have no shame. madtherchot haterz can suck it :o

If Ibra comes, it will most definitely be a huge test of Allegri's man-management skills, as well as other coaching qualities. I stress man-management, as if he is able to get through to the players, then it will be easier for him to implement his ideas. And thats something he needs to do off the bat, given our Serie A schedule + the fact that the management will now have a legitimate reason to raise expectations, as opposed to the previous season under Leo.

The mere fact that expectations will be raised is testament to the quality Ibra brings with him. He's a top striker, no doubt ... maybe a questionable investment for a team in Milan's predicament - as depicted by Galliani in the recent past - but its Berlu's money + you could say we're debt-free in comparison to our competitors.

Either way, he's still one of the best strikers on the planet. To me, it makes sense to acknowledge that from the word go, and then break down the tactical complications that come with integrating our best players into a system. Keep the best, let go of the rest.

I mostly agree with your observations, especially the quoted part, but I don't see Ibra as the cock-block for the ultimate attack, exploiting the abilities of our very talented forwards. Regardless of whether Ibra comes or doesn't, a main priority remains Pato being liberated from the right forward spot. Whether we get Dzeko, Torres, Drogba, etc. them being more workhorse-type CFs isn't the reason why Pato would isolated on the right. I know I'm being repetitive (but suck it haterz :o) but the whole obstacle in the bigger scheme of things is Ronaldinho and his inability to be mobile, dynamic, etc.

I don't think its an inability ... he's very talented, and I'd say its more if him being reluctant to play out of his comfort-zone. As long as that happens, the whole dynamics of the front three become rather predictable, and this is something top defenses will know how to handle, as mere talent won't be able to break them up.

So, the idea of a more dynamic front three would be key - by dynamic, Dinho can is allowed to play on the left: but he shouldn't hog it down, as he rarely attacks the left flank like a more conventional winger. He should cut in, try to move into the center, and yes ... even make runs with/without the ball towards his right. If he can do this, the whole dynamics of the attack with change, as Pato is very mobile as he is + it'll bring the best out of Ibra.

Basically, asking Ibra to take all the work(horse) load not only isn't fair on him, but wont cut it against the best defenses. All three forward will have to work in tandem with each other (moving, switching positions and roles, etc.) and with their sound technical ability, we would be very difficult to stop.

Note that this would also apply to a workhorse forward like Bori, as good movement is fundamental to an attacks predictability.

So whether its a 4-3-1-2 or 4-3-3, movement would be required from ALL the attackers in order to get the most out of them. The only problem I see with the 4-3-1-2 is that IF both Dinho and Ibra aren't mobile enough, we risk becoming too narrow, much as we were under Carlo with his diamond + xmass tree formations. Only major difference is that back then we had better fullbacks, and that could be a major problem as we'll lack width.

Admittedly, I'm no fan of expansive (wide) football. For example, last season, we could barely conjure up anything down the middle, and that was only when Clarence was on the pitch + in form ... Otherwise, we were continuously going down the flanks, hoping a cross would find a target. No ... I much rather prefer central penetration, but in the end, its all about balance. And in a 4-3-1-2, most of the width comes from the fullbacks, and I don't think our current ones are up to standard.

Which brings me back to the whole question of whether Ibra is a smart investment. At first glance, yes. Certainly we're going about it carefully, giving us the option to pull out of the deal at the end of the season. But the resounding conclusion one can make is that he wont be enough. We need other additions, and perhaps the sort of money we would potentially spend on him would be best spent spread throughout the squad.

But a loan with an option to buy sounds like a good compromise. Mostly because while he had an indifferent season at Bartha, he's not as overweight or unfit as the supposed :star: football stars :star: we've been signing of late.
Yep. He'll have even less space in the hole, which is why movement/dynamics is important for any attack. He can venture to the left if he sees space, but the same should apply to Ibra. For example, if Ibra goes left, then Dinho has to make a run into the box/more central/even to the right. Same applies with Pato.

Just because its 4-3-1-2 or 4-3-3 or whatever lineup doesn't mean players are constrained to those positions. If we can get these geniuses on the ball to move like that + play in tandem with each other (chemistry) then we'll get the best out of them IMO.

FUCK. That one was tactic thread material too!

Getting back into this discussion ...
 

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Good job :)

For those that watched the Lecce game, clearly the team moved a lot better than it did last season. Forwards were constantly on the move, with both Ambro and especially Clarence also making telling runs into the opposition box. Antonini, for a change, was connecting with Pirlo passes, as opposed to exclusive flicks from Dinho last season ...

The result was there for all to see. We were able to play at a high tempo, making very few touches on the ball before passing, because players were open most of the time, due to better movement.

Still have to see how balanced we are against a stronger team ... we barely had much defending to do, and even then, Lecce did manage to create 2-3 good chances. I personally would like to see Milan against a more offensively setup team (or better yet, an excellent counter attacking side) to judge Allegri's work defensively ... but when in possession, I can already see changes in the way we play when compared to under Leo.

Now for the big one ... can we play all four forwards in a starting lineup? Well, that depends on who we're playing ... and even then, I'd rather have an attacking option on the bench other than Pippo just in case.

I don't get people not wanting Robinho. I'll readily admit to not being his biggest fan, but as a straight swap for Hunter, show me where to sign. I believe he can play as a second striker (in a two striker setup), as well as a wide forward. So, we basically have a lot of options and variations to chose from in attack, and if Allegri's able to transform Robinho's international form onto club level, he'll even add to our movement up front.

All in all, pretty decent additions, though I personally would have liked to see a wingback brought in as well.
 
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So coming back to this I probably don't remember what I wanted to say and the Robinho arrival changes a lot but I'll give my best shot.

I don't think we need Zlatan to be our workhorse. Still he can hold off defenders very well and will make a difference with his passing skills. With that he will add more freedom to Ronaldinho since Borriello couldn't do it as much, Marco could only hustle.

The main difference would have been(since the situation will be different with the arrival of Robinho) that with Zlatan they would combine more on the ground where with Borriello, Ronaldinho was marked at the wing Zlatan will drag him closer to exchange heelpasses and such.

Zlatan's problem at Barca looked to me as if he didn't get enough ball. He's a ball player but they tried to put him into the box. We don't need to do that. With forward line of Pato-Dinho-Zlatan they all posess such skill they can combine themselves into the box. They don't need to watch there and fight the body-to-body with the defenders.

True with those 3 you have 3 possible Ballon D'or winners so it's hard to imagine how they all can shine as bright as they could if the team was built around just one players but I'm optimistic that even without all 3 reaching their personal max, together they can go further.

PS! This didn't come out as good as I thought it would but whatever.
 

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We dont want them to win 3 ballondors we need milan to win something, we have too many magicians in the team and untill allegri comes up with a formula(thats what we are discussing here) I hope they take turns to show their magic.

I am so happy with this team, zlatan can do it alone with 10 noobs and seedorf job would be taken by zlatan those one twos and those flicks all those shit but we need a solid box to box player who can deliver ball through ground, the air transport has been too unreliable due to the performance of squadron leader pirlo.

We done need to go left and then attack we can give ball straight to zlatan and he can either score or put it to patos feet, Dinho will suffer a little but he is improving day in and day out and we have a cover for ronaldinho who is fast and who can play on LW and he can play as No10 if no80 is out injured.

Binho and zlatan has changed the entire dimension of our team. Well done, we can play long ball shit if pirlo has a good game, we can play those magic football in front of their goal but I am worried about counters from opponent and inability of us to strike opponents from counter attack, because dinho takes lot of time on the ball (Sometime), but last game was a pleasant surprise.

I am so loving it I hope two among Flamini KPB and merkel shows so world class quality cause we need speed in our midfield to attack and defend.
But allaegri will make all these lazy attackers fly, even dinho tried a sliding tackle :D

So happy with our squad


Fks and Cks should be given their importance we need to train more
 

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About the discussion, I agree with almost everything that Calum wrote. He has almost the same worries and doubts I have. But regarding the 4-3-1-2 / 4-3-3 I would like to know Allegri's intentions. He talked a lot about his idea of play 1-2 but, if I'm not mistaken, just tried it in 2 second half's all the pre-season. Also, his choice of Bonera as a defensive fullback looks like another bet on the 4-3-3. It's the same pattern of last year, when Leo wanted to play, and started the season playing 1-2 too, it clearly doesn't worked, and the 4-3-3 come to the rescue. I like the idea of a 1-2, (maybe a loopsided one with Ronaldinho naturally shifting to left) but it doesn't look like Allegri will try.


Good job :)

For those that watched the Lecce game, clearly the team moved a lot better than it did last season. Forwards were constantly on the move, with both Ambro and especially Clarence also making telling runs into the opposition box. Antonini, for a change, was connecting with Pirlo passes, as opposed to exclusive flicks from Dinho last season ...

The result was there for all to see. We were able to play at a high tempo, making very few touches on the ball before passing, because players were open most of the time, due to better movement.

Still have to see how balanced we are against a stronger team ... we barely had much defending to do, and even then, Lecce did manage to create 2-3 good chances. I personally would like to see Milan against a more offensively setup team to judge Allegri's work defensively ... but when in possession, I can already see changes in the way we play when compared to under Leo.

Like I said in the match thread, the fluidity and movement of this team was extraordinary. But still, it's easier to run upfield when there is no defensive worry and the other team marking is awful. Maybe we will not see this kind of movement every match, but at least it's clear that Allegri is working against our static positioning of previous years.

I must say that I like a lot this idea of football. Milan had more than 60% of possession against Lecce, but don't started any Barcelonesque "tiki-taka" until 70 minutes or so, when it was necessary to slow Lecce down a little. Possesion yes, but with objectivity. The team keep playing in high tempo until he could, never gived up to long balls, counters and direct passes.

On another note, Borriello was not different in this match than he was on previous years. He made basically the dirty work of a powerhouse, fighting for the ball with defenders, keeped then worried (opening spaces for Pato), receiving crosses and throug-balls... He made no shift to the sides or exchanged position. We don't have this kind of player anymore, and our attack will have to find another ways.
 

GreatKalu

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Yes, the attack will have to function differently ... but that doesn't mean that it won't be able to function. A workhorse is not a functional requirement of an attack. World class attacking units have been formed in the past without them. What matters in the end is the collective work (movement, physical + technical duels, etc.) of the attack as a unit, and how effective they are TOGETHER.

Way I see it, with a little more effort from ALL our forwards, they can collectively surpass any sort of work-rate Bori used to produce ... simply because three good workers will produce more than a specialized one. Collective effort will be key, as if one of them doesn't produce the required amount of individual work, it makes life a lot more harder for his partners in attack. Great then that we will have quality on the bench in case such a situation arises. Hopefully, we'll be able to keep everyone fresh for most of the season.

On the flip side, it would take a minor miracle for Bori to be considered of the same technical quality as Ibra. It is still a gamble ... every move is a gamble. Players are not machines. You can't always expect a new player to immediately produce results. It happens sometimes, but in other cases, it may take more time for a player to settle in.

But still, I like the chances of Ibra, Dinho and Robinho upping their work rate, more so than Bori discovering that extra bit of quality we simply lacked last season. With this lineup, I can realistically see us having the best attack in Europe ... whereas with Bori, I simply can't.

Regarding Allegri's system of choice, I suppose we'll be going for a 4-3-3 mainly because of our lack of quality wingbacks. And, even though we'll be lining up in a 4-3-3, it doesn't mean that Dinho/Pato/Binho will be restricted to the wide areas. Both wide men should cut in, make runs into the box, while a CF of Ibra/Pato's caliber will be capable of drifting wide when required.

The whole idea is to make the attack function as a unit. Let it be dynamic. Let players develop good chemistry, such that they would almost seemingly switch positions and roles. So, instead of having a fixed sequence of events (eg. Dinho creates, Bori finishes), both Dinho and Ibra would be able to create for one another. It makes us a lot less predictable and harder to defend against.

If we're running out of time/options in a game, and we need to resort to route 1 - long ball in the box, brute force to win the ball in the air, perhaps Ibra wouldn't be at the same level as say Drogba. Thats the only drawback I can see with this excessively technical attack ... but was Bori really that much better than Ibra in this regard? I personally don't think so, and is actually why thought Dzeko would be better suited.

Regarding Bonera, after his display against United last season, I honestly believe he's our best RB. Haven't seen Sokratis in the role, but Bonera can be a beast of a RB if he gets some consistency, which he's lacked because of fitness problems. Yes, he's of a defensive mold, but having a defensive RB gives Pato more energy to spend offensively, as opposed to tracking back + covering the RB. Perhaps we could also see KPB on the right of central midfield as well. Morerover, Antonini will be able to push forward, which will inevitably bring the best out of Dinho.

As for the "pass it to the nearest midget" game aka "tiki-taka", I'm glad Allegri's football isn't of that boring nature. Quickness, directness, is what we need to employ as we've already got tons of technical ability as it is individually. The football philosophy should be direct, get the job done, and then tika-taka to save energy + run down the clock. More shots on target ... I don't want to see each goal being passed into the net :D
 

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I have one question to people who watch the game more intently than me,
Why do we suck on long balls, why cant our defense cop with high balls, nesta+silva seems like a great combination but they dont have enough authority or aggressiveness in the air. Is that because

1. They dont show off? But its seems to me that high balls are a problem for us
2. midfield is not closing up the gaps properly so nesta and silva has to cover a lot for the midfield. And i think its good to blame another dept when one dept is facing some trouble
3. Defense means more than just nesta and silva, where are the fullbacks?
4. or our Cbs are into aesthetics and they are not aggressive or violent enough to hack down a jumping striker, (amauri is shit otherwise we could have conceded a 1000 goali know our best cbs were rested) that they miss one or two aerial balls
5. Abbiatti cries so much and screams "please let me play for some time" :D
6. Tassoti is a fullback and he need to call baresi for some help :star: :proud:
 
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Good question, let me give my thoughts....

I have one question to people who watch the game more intently than me,
Why do we suck on long balls, why cant our defense cop with high balls, nesta+silva seems like a great combination but they dont have enough authority or aggressiveness in the air. Is that because

1. They dont show off? But its seems to me that high balls are a problem for us
2. midfield is not closing up the gaps properly so nesta and silva has to cover a lot for the midfield. And i think its good to blame another dept when one dept is facing some trouble
3. Defense means more than just nesta and silva, where are the fullbacks?
4. or our Cbs are into aesthetics and they are not aggressive or violent enough to hack down a jumping striker, (amauri is shit otherwise we could have conceded a 1000 goali know our best cbs were rested) that they miss one or two aerial balls
5. Abbiatti cries so much and screams "please let me play for some time" :D
6. Tassoti is a fullback and he need to call baresi for some help :star: :proud:

Midfield closing down is definitely a big issue for us. It's one of the reasons why leo favored abate and antonini @ FB. Because of there speed we could play a much higher line, making distance between defense and attack more compact. If you notice whenever nesta or even silva was out, we played a deeper line (because favalli naturally cannot play as high) thus leaving too much room in midfield for the lack of athleticism milan have there.


I think big difference between milan and inter CBs is Milan play ATTACKING football. And there is a difference. Milan push ball forward and try to go forward, a quick counter can catch anyone off guard. Samuel and Lucio are world class, but they can be easily exposed. Granted kaka didn't score but that was on his own there... he had samuel beat and well... broke his knee

But when you play a compact deep team like inter did, w/ cambiasso, zanetti stopping counters it leaves less responsibilty to CBs. If we put nesta and silva on inter, they'd be fine doing that job.

Point is it's not an easy plauy being a CB on an attacking team playing half the game @ halfway line, and then trying to sprint back and deal with long ball. It's a VERY hard play. Truth is silva and nesta are world class @ dealing with it IMO. If we had other Cbs milan might have allowed 60 goals last year
 
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Eugh, all this talk of a 4-2-4/4-2-3-1 formation is ludicrous beyond belief. Firstly, Allegri isn't foolish enough to drastically change the team's shape to accommodate two players who haven't even trained with the team yet and secondly, well... it's unlikely that he'll abandon his preferred formation. On paper, of course, we could field a team of Ronaldinho, Robinho and Pato in behind Ibra, with Pirlo one of only two central midfielders.

If the coach decides that said formation is the way to go, then Pirlo has to be dropped. He's a playmaker, not a holding midfielder and while his defensive work is underrated, it shouldn't even exist. Playing him in a two-man midfield doesn't get the best out of him or Ronaldinho, Robinho or Zlatan, who similarly prefer possession football over a quick, direct, counter-attacking Inter-like approach. Besides, neither of our forwards possess the hardworking nature of Eto'o or Pandev.

Ideally, I'm sure Allegri would like to play a 4-3-1-2 and so would I, as it would get the best out of Pato and Pirlo. It could work if Ronaldinho adopted a more central role while hugging the left and Pato playing off Ibra. Somewhat of a narrow 4-3-2-1, in other words. In other cases, I can't see why Robinho can't fill a Rui Costa-like trequartista role behind the front two - he certainly has the characteristics to do so.

I sincerely hope Allegri isn't subjected to playing all four at the same time and should he opt to keep Robinho on the bench, I don't think it would cause any disharmony. Players of his quality don't think "OMG, how am I gonna play with all these players in the team", they focus on giving 100% in training as they believe in their ability; in Robinho's case, he genuinely think that he's good enough to displace Ronaldinho and as such, competition, work rate and enthusiasm increases. If he outperforms him in training, he deserves to be in the team on merit.

Likewise, if Allegri goes for a two-man midfield then Pirlo should be dropped, as he'd be detrimental to the team. I don't think it's the right formation as stated above, but the coach needs to do what he feels is best for the team. On the one hand, it would leave Nesta and Silva with a lot less work if they're protected by two defensive midfielders; put them in Barcelona's team, they'd struggle just as much as they'd have to press quite high up the pitch and leave themselves exposed to counters. I don't want the team to play tedious possession football, nor do I want us to become a carbon copy of Inter's treble-winning side. Balance between the two is needed, hence why I feel the ideal formation is a 4-3-1-2.
 

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....secondly, well... it's unlikely that he'll abandon his preferred formation. On paper, of course, we could field a team of Ronaldinho, Robinho and Pato in behind Ibra, with Pirlo one of only two central midfielders.
What is Allegri's fave formation anyway? He only had a handful of friendlies/tournament and one single official game while the team is changing with all the late comers (Ibra/Robinhho) and goers (Huntelaar, Boriello, Kaladzhe). OK, I know the goers (esp Huntelaar and Kaladzhe) might not really shape his tactic but my point is, his plan could and should change because of Ibra/Robinho arrival because they are quality players.

It is often said that good players adapt to the tactic of the team, never the team adapting to the players. But if that player(s) is so good and he could actually be expected to bring a lot of good things to the team, why not try to adapt to his/their abilities?

At the start of last season, Leonardo played R80 behind Pato and Boriello, basically replacing Kaka in the 4-1-2-1-2 (or 4-3-1-2) formation that Ancelotti used so many times. But after the disastrous 4-0 defeat vs Inter and disappointing results that follow (vs Livorno, Udinese, Bari, Atalanta), he shifted to 4-3-3 formation because that way he can use R80's dribbling and passing abilities on the left and let Pato use his speed on the right. It worked well until Pato/Nesta were injured.
 

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The one he used at Cagliari, perhaps? If Cossu, a natural winger managed to play as a trequartista in Allegri's 4-3-1-2 at Cagliari, then so should Ronaldinho and Robinho. Pour moi, that is the ideal formation which brings the best out of Pirlo, Pato and even Ibrahimovic, while maintaining a balance in the team. Like you said, good players adapt to the team, rather than the other way around.

To reiterate what I've said quite often, a player of Ronaldinho's ability really should be able to adjust to any attacking position and I disagree that he can't be as influential in the center as he is on the left. Leo never actually tried him in that position after the season turn-around against Roma, up until which the whole team was underperforming. However, like I said, should we stick to the 4-3-3, I'd prefer if it was more of a narrow 4-3-2-1 with Pato and Ronaldinho playing more centrally.
 

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To reiterate what I've said quite often, a player of Ronaldinho's ability really should be able to adjust to any attacking position and I disagree that he can't be as influential in the center as he is on the left. Leo never actually tried him in that position after the season turn-around against Roma, up until which the whole team was underperforming. However, like I said, should we stick to the 4-3-3, I'd prefer if it was more of a narrow 4-3-2-1 with Pato and Ronaldinho playing more centrally.


I agree that Ronaldinho should be able to adapt. I just don't see it happening. Serie A trequartistas are forced to spend a lot of time with their back to goal, and they have to work their bollocks off to get a yard of space with the ball at their feet while facing in the right direction. A bit of tracking back in the first game of the season isn't going to convince me that Ronaldinho has the work rate or patience for the central role.
 

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what i loved about allegri's cagliari teams was flexibility of his midfield...

it was a 4-3-1-2 but watching them play it was a very fluid 4 man midfield which took various shapes.... 4-4-2, 4-2-2-2, 4-3-1-2. The most key figures were lazzari, cossu and biondini. Lazzari particularly...

lazzari played LCM and a role allegri liked to call 'half winger'. he was able to sit in a 3 man or push up as an AM. Cossu a natural RW @ CAM moved well with lazzari. When lazzari would push up it's almost as if it was a LAM and a RAM in a 4-2-2. At same time cossu would drop back always to right and make a flat 4. Biondini was in a sense the pirlo regista role, distributing and setting up from deeper.

Allegri was most concerned about player for his 'half winger role'. I think it's clear he wants boateng to be that guy. If you noticed when boateng came on he played right sided role, as dinho clearly likes left. I hope it works, lazzari is a more skilled player but lacks the physical gifts and general upside boateng has

If you notice when boateng came in, he was
 

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I agree that Ronaldinho should be able to adapt. I just don't see it happening. Serie A trequartistas are forced to spend a lot of time with their back to goal, and they have to work their bollocks off to get a yard of space with the ball at their feet while facing in the right direction. A bit of tracking back in the first game of the season isn't going to convince me that Ronaldinho has the work rate or patience for the central role.
Hm, fair point. He isn't disciplined enough to play in a central role, where he'll have less time on the ball and won't be able to dribble and beat his man like on the wing, whereas someone like Rui Costa was perfect for close control dribbling in tight spaces. Robinho, however, is capable of filling that role, judging by what I've seen of him.
 

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My take on Allegri's tactics and 'the half winger'

I noticed in preferred formation and the match thread particularly people still aren't fully understanding Allegri's tactics. A lot of people are claiming we 'basically played a 4-2-4' or it was the 4-2-1-3 again with Seedorf in an advanced role. That is not true.

From the beginning of the summer, Allegri had one focal signing he wanted. a "half winger". A LCM/RCM for his 3 man midfield. The obvious choice was Lazzari, the player who played this role so well for Cagliari.

First let me back up and explain what it is I believe Allegri want's out of his half winger. You have to look at rest of his midfield first to understand the concept of it. He has 2 pure CMs who he wants to more or less stay at home. A regista who plays the ball and another CM who can push forward a little more. Both are expected to hold more tactical disapline.

Then there is the trequartista who plays off the strikers and is expected to give the final touch on most occasions. In Allegri's cagliari he had Cossu who was a Right winger playing trequartista.

Now to the half-winger. The concept of this is a player who can play BOTH a 3 man midfield to hold possession and not leave a team defensively vunerable with only 2 CMs (as it's near impossible to play that way anymore) AND a player who can push into final 3rd like an attacking midfielder and add extra body so the trequartista is NOT easily marked out. If you don't understand what I mean by easily marked out, go watch 2009/10 Juventus. Diego is a quality player, but NO ONE from juve's midfield offered creativity, and neither did the strikers. This made defenses job easy... don't allow Diego space and Juve can't do much.

In a sense the 'half-winger' is hardest role to fill for a team as a true winger like nani or van der vaart could never do it as they can't play a 3 man central midfield and a player like De Rossi wouldn't necessarily excell in it either as he's too much of a central midfielder uncomfortable out wide. Players who are probably taylor made for this role are schweinstagger, iniesta, possibly ramires/afellay, a younger camorenesi etc.

Now let's look at cagliari's 2009/10 team last year...



The point that makes it interesting is Cossu was originally a right winger and Lazzari a left winger. Cossu would naturally float to the right and at times it was assume a 4-3-3 look. Because of his penchant of going right, Lazzari had space centrally to run into.

The other interesting point is Cagliari had 3 forwards who were all mobile and versitile. In there two striker system they all had freedom to float side to side in box. SomethinG Pato and Ibrahimovic can do easily. With Nene or Matri (or Jeda) moving to side of box or playing a general 2 striker system, again there was freedom for Lazzari to come in.

All this plus Lazzari's strength/strongerr finishing ability led to him scoring 6 goals as opposed to Cossu who scored only 3 in a more advanced position (granted he had A LOT more assists).


I'm going to show a couple examples of what I mean;

first cagliari v. genoa. Genoa won 3-2

Skip forward to 2:43


As you see, the ball is won when #31 agostini (the LB) and Lazzari (LCM) pressure Genoa and win the ball (I think it's palladino), Lazzari immediately passes it back to Conti who is playing regista (instead of typically Biondini) and Lazzari immediately is making a run from left side up the middle. It insues in a goal after linking up with a clumsy striker, Matri.


now let's look at Lazzari's goal v. Fiorentina:

Goal build up starts @ 0:44


Now look as the CB Canini released the ball, freeze it at 0:49. You'll see Cossu has now floated to Left forward/wing region. Matri is directly central with Jeda at a more Right forward position. Lazzari is about 5 yards behind Cossu at full sprint from left midfield position. As you see Cossu puts a nice touch on it to the surging Lazzari who finishes it beautifully.

THIS goal is similar to the near seedorf miss v. lecce. (Starts @ 1:05)


Defensive error finds seedorf who has surged from midfield found ronaldinho who tees up an open goal which the Seedorf missed. Albiet Seedorf came in more centrally then lazzari but if you rewind the game and watch, seedorf is CLEARLY on left side of central midfield and drifting slowly in. Also Pirlo's ball @ 2:41 which again seedorf didn't finish, clarence starts run FROM the left central midfield get's himself central behind borriello. As terrible as Seedorf's finishing was both build ups were great and on a better day both would have been goals, based on well timed late runs from the 'half-winger' from central midfield into attack.

Truthfully we cannot judge Allegri's idea's for Milan but i'm noticing a pattern from Cagliari and Milan. Even though Cossu played trequartista instead of Left wing like Ronaldinho he floated a lot. Freeze frame both cagliari goals I linked, and you'll see Cossu is in an almost full forward position, be it right or left side, and the opposite side forward shifts a bit wider to accommodate. They take almost a full 4-3-3 look. Whether it's a 4-3-1-2 or 4-3-3 it's a 3 forward system with Cossu getting a free role and the 2 forwards adapting to his positioning. I noticed Ronaldinho did this at times, and at other times stayed glued to left. I think Allegri would like him to play more freely than glued to left, whether he will, is anyones guess but his talent is there.

Finally one last goal which might be more relevant to milan's system. Cagliari played a 4-3-3 in this game. Matri on left, Larivvey central and Jeda on the right.
Goal starts @ 0:28


Truthfully from look of it, it looks more like a 4-3-1-2 with larivvey behind strikers. but what happens. Biondini sends ball to jeda who moves from forward to right side. Again Lazzari is surging from a deep LEFT position to head it in.

Eitherway the dynamic of the system is pretty clear. There are three attacking players who are mobile and moving. And 1 'half winger' floating from the 3 man midfield up to the attack giving that extra attacker to break down teams. Seedorf clearly played this role. HOPEFULLY Boateng can.

It should be stated the other midfielders pushed forward as well when time presented itself but lazzari CLEARLY had more freedom to do so just like Seedorf did v. Lecce. Allegri's system is predicated on spacing and constant movement and continuing runs from deep. However the 'half-winger' role is an interesting wrinkle to standard 4-3-1-2 run in Serie A, and giving it the extra dynamism to play when most teams are shifting away from a 4-3-1-2 and to some variation of a 4-2-3-1. I hope Boateng can take this role and make it his own, but if not, I hope the right player is signed as I doubt Seedorf can do it for a full year and it's final to making Allegri's idea work well
 
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good work boy :beer: you should stop posting about pirlo barca ance kaka all those things which have some effect on you and you are :star:
 

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he's always on the right spot/

rarely or never post nonsense.

good work :star:
 

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Excellent post Milano.

Especially regarding the differences between a 4-3-1-2 and a 4-3-3: Its theoretical ... on paper. If they were to be implemented dynamically, you really wouldn't be able to tell the difference between the two, with the forwards switching positions/roles, being dynamic.

The concept of the "half winger" (is that what they call it nowadays?) isn't anything new IMO. Clarence used to play the role for Carlo back in the day, and Perrotta was precisely that for Italy in 06.

Personally, I like it. It gives more bite and strength to the midfield (3 CMs), while the dynamism it brings creates a fluid connection between attack and midfield.

Just wanted to touch on one point, which I kinda disagree with. I agree with everything, except this:
The concept of this is a player who can play BOTH a 3 man midfield to hold possession and not leave a team defensively vunerable with only 2 CMs (as it's near impossible to play that way anymore) AND a player who can push into final 3rd like an attacking midfielder and add extra body so the trequartista is NOT easily marked out.

Listen, I'm a big fan of central midfields. My favorite players have always been central midfielders. If you asked me four years ago, I'd say the more CMs the merrier. The main reason why were able to boss United in 07 was because of the numerical advantage we had in the middle (Ambro+Gattuso+Pirlo+Clarence vs Scholes+Carrick+Fletcher). Its also the reason why Italy controlled more of the game against Germany in 06, but failed to reproduce that same dominance against France in the final, who also fielded a 3-man central midfield.

However, todays game is more about precision and efficiency. You can call it Anti-Football, but as long as it gets you results, its successful football. For all the glorious technical football Bartha played, they were beaten by MERDA last season, and should have been beaten by Chelsea the year before.

I see a lot of tacticians playing with two defensively sound holding midfielders. The world cup was saturated with them, and while this may be a side-effect of Mourinho's tactically brilliant season at MERDA, the stability it brings is undeniable.

Also, as footballers evolve, its becoming clearer to me that the modern footballer isn't a specialized player. He is a "Jack of all trades" capable of defending and attacking in almost equal levels. Wingers in particular do as much defending as fullbacks do (tracking back opposition fullbacks) ... similarly, fullbacks attack just as much as wingers nowadays depending on the tactical setup. I mean, we witnessed Gattuso playing a RM, with Cafu at RB. Of course Gattuso tucked into midfield often, but he was playing as a right midfielder.

Thing is, nowadays, you have wingers, wide forwards, etc. who can defend and get involved physically, which was primarily left to central midfielders in the years gone by. Given their technical brilliance, a simple 4-4-2 will be able to give a team as much bite in the middle, and even more fluidity/dynamics/unpredictability in connecting midfield an attack.

Why more unpredictability? I think gaps and spaces at the highest levels are very difficult to find nowadays. Coaches are continuously trying to find a mismatch ... which is why a lot of forwards attack the goal from wide positions, since wingbacks are normally less competent defensively than CBs.

Having such technically sound players ... excellent finishers/creators in these wide positions, working hard at keeping a defensive shape, makes a team very dangerous to more traditional possession-based sides. The perfect antidote, if I may, of the possession-based, 3-man midfield side.

We have the pace, brilliance and technical ability in our four attackers. We can easily field two very good holding midfielders to protect the defense. We have a reasonably good defense. If we can get our wide players (Dinho + Binho) to put in one heck of a shift, it can very well be a devastating team with Pato playing off Ibra up front.

Of course, we cannot expect shifts from Dinho/Binho week in week out. But for the big games, once in a while, they can surely be motivated to deliver. In which case, I think a 2-man CM would be as good, if not better, than a 3-man setup. My opinion of course ...
 

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I was one of the clowns who said that we "basically played a 4-2-4", but that was just a cheap shot at Seedorf's lack of defensive responsibilities instead of what was actually going on tactically.

Great post M84. I think Allegri is basically playing his Cagliari formation, but flipped left to right. I DONT think that Ronaldinho is actually playing the role of an out-and-out left winger. In fact, he's likely drawn up on team tactical boards right behind the strikers, in the role where Cossu played last year. The difference is that he is given even more freedom to roam out left, where of course he is very comfortable.

In the Lecce match, there were times when Ronaldinho started the attack from the middle of the pitch, or made cutting runs at the center of their defense. How many times did that ever happen last year??? He's definitely playing a role now where he alternates between the left and the center.

As for the "half-winger" that will play in the middle/ right for us, I think they view Boateng as someone who can fill the role. To me, he's certainly a true central midfielder. But it will be interesting to see how this formation develops, since there is no way that Seedorf remains a fixture in the starting XI.
 

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I noticed in preferred formation and the match thread particularly people still aren't fully understanding Allegri's tactics. A lot of people are claiming we 'basically played a 4-2-4' or it was the 4-2-1-3 again with Seedorf in an advanced role. That is not true.

From the beginning of the summer, Allegri had one focal signing he wanted. a "half winger". A LCM/RCM for his 3 man midfield. The obvious choice was Lazzari, the player who played this role so well for Cagliari.

First let me back up and explain what it is I believe Allegri want's out of his half winger. You have to look at rest of his midfield first to understand the concept of it. He has 2 pure CMs who he wants to more or less stay at home. A regista who plays the ball and another CM who can push forward a little more. Both are expected to hold more tactical disapline.

Then there is the trequartista who plays off the strikers and is expected to give the final touch on most occasions. In Allegri's cagliari he had Cossu who was a Right winger playing trequartista.

Now to the half-winger. The concept of this is a player who can play BOTH a 3 man midfield to hold possession and not leave a team defensively vunerable with only 2 CMs (as it's near impossible to play that way anymore) AND a player who can push into final 3rd like an attacking midfielder and add extra body so the trequartista is NOT easily marked out. If you don't understand what I mean by easily marked out, go watch 2009/10 Juventus. Diego is a quality player, but NO ONE from juve's midfield offered creativity, and neither did the strikers. This made defenses job easy... don't allow Diego space and Juve can't do much.

In a sense the 'half-winger' is hardest role to fill for a team as a true winger like nani or van der vaart could never do it as they can't play a 3 man central midfield and a player like De Rossi wouldn't necessarily excell in it either as he's too much of a central midfielder uncomfortable out wide. Players who are probably taylor made for this role are schweinstagger, iniesta, possibly ramires/afellay, a younger camorenesi etc.

Now let's look at cagliari's 2009/10 team last year...



The point that makes it interesting is Cossu was originally a right winger and Lazzari a left winger. Cossu would naturally float to the right and at times it was assume a 4-3-3 look. Because of his penchant of going right, Lazzari had space centrally to run into.

The other interesting point is Cagliari had 3 forwards who were all mobile and versitile. In there two striker system they all had freedom to float side to side in box. SomethinG Pato and Ibrahimovic can do easily. With Nene or Matri (or Jeda) moving to side of box or playing a general 2 striker system, again there was freedom for Lazzari to come in.

All this plus Lazzari's strength/strongerr finishing ability led to him scoring 6 goals as opposed to Cossu who scored only 3 in a more advanced position (granted he had A LOT more assists).


I'm going to show a couple examples of what I mean;

first cagliari v. genoa. Genoa won 3-2

Skip forward to 2:43


As you see, the ball is won when #31 agostini (the LB) and Lazzari (LCM) pressure Genoa and win the ball (I think it's palladino), Lazzari immediately passes it back to Conti who is playing regista (instead of typically Biondini) and Lazzari immediately is making a run from left side up the middle. It insues in a goal after linking up with a clumsy striker, Matri.


now let's look at Lazzari's goal v. Fiorentina:

Goal build up starts @ 0:44


Now look as the CB Canini released the ball, freeze it at 0:49. You'll see Cossu has now floated to Left forward/wing region. Matri is directly central with Jeda at a more Right forward position. Lazzari is about 5 yards behind Cossu at full sprint from left midfield position. As you see Cossu puts a nice touch on it to the surging Lazzari who finishes it beautifully.

THIS goal is similar to the near seedorf miss v. lecce. (Starts @ 1:05)


Defensive error finds seedorf who has surged from midfield found ronaldinho who tees up an open goal which the Seedorf missed. Albiet Seedorf came in more centrally then lazzari but if you rewind the game and watch, seedorf is CLEARLY on left side of central midfield and drifting slowly in. Also Pirlo's ball @ 2:41 which again seedorf didn't finish, clarence starts run FROM the left central midfield get's himself central behind borriello. As terrible as Seedorf's finishing was both build ups were great and on a better day both would have been goals, based on well timed late runs from the 'half-winger' from central midfield into attack.

Truthfully we cannot judge Allegri's idea's for Milan but i'm noticing a pattern from Cagliari and Milan. Even though Cossu played trequartista instead of Left wing like Ronaldinho he floated a lot. Freeze frame both cagliari goals I linked, and you'll see Cossu is in an almost full forward position, be it right or left side, and the opposite side forward shifts a bit wider to accommodate. They take almost a full 4-3-3 look. Whether it's a 4-3-1-2 or 4-3-3 it's a 3 forward system with Cossu getting a free role and the 2 forwards adapting to his positioning. I noticed Ronaldinho did this at times, and at other times stayed glued to left. I think Allegri would like him to play more freely than glued to left, whether he will, is anyones guess but his talent is there.

Finally one last goal which might be more relevant to milan's system. Cagliari played a 4-3-3 in this game. Matri on left, Larivvey central and Jeda on the right.
Goal starts @ 0:28


Truthfully from look of it, it looks more like a 4-3-1-2 with larivvey behind strikers. but what happens. Biondini sends ball to jeda who moves from forward to right side. Again Lazzari is surging from a deep LEFT position to head it in.

Eitherway the dynamic of the system is pretty clear. There are three attacking players who are mobile and moving. And 1 'half winger' floating from the 3 man midfield up to the attack giving that extra attacker to break down teams. Seedorf clearly played this role. HOPEFULLY Boateng can.

It should be stated the other midfielders pushed forward as well when time presented itself but lazzari CLEARLY had more freedom to do so just like Seedorf did v. Lecce. Allegri's system is predicated on spacing and constant movement and continuing runs from deep. However the 'half-winger' role is an interesting wrinkle to standard 4-3-1-2 run in Serie A, and giving it the extra dynamism to play when most teams are shifting away from a 4-3-1-2 and to some variation of a 4-2-3-1. I hope Boateng can take this role and make it his own, but if not, I hope the right player is signed as I doubt Seedorf can do it for a full year and it's final to making Allegri's idea work well

Like I said in the Pirlo thread. When it doesn't involve him, you are no longer in The Twilight Zone.

Superb post.

Just a question. And a serious one:

Do you really have THAT MUCH fucking time on your hands? :eek:



If you want to keep doing this, don't EVER get married :D
 

acmilan4ever

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^^ id like to add that if you do get married, make sure she understands what 4-3-1-2 or 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 or seedorf mean to u :D
 

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Just a question. And a serious one:

Do you really have THAT MUCH fucking time on your hands? :eek:



If you want to keep doing this, don't EVER get married :D

Weirdly it look me like 30-45 mins to write that. Granted I'd been marinating on the idea, and those clips I put, I'd watched those games so it'd not like I was youtube surfing for hours...

I enjoy writing a lot (even if I have the grammar of a 12 year old) and of course, i love tactics, which would explain why i love maestro so much :D

And don't you worry....I have ZERO desire to get married in the next decade. Bachelor life>marriage

Edit: Now what would you think if I told you, i wrote that on my living room with 3 friends over, we were watching "Hard Knocks" and was carrying on a conversation. Multi-tasking, my friend ;). Like a year ago majority of my posts were from my cell phone while hanging out w/ my gf of time.

sidenote on that: "Now, let's go get some goddamn snack!"- Rex Ryan
 
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