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4-2-2-2 Long Term?

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by IrishRedDevil, Feb 25, 2018.

  1. Feb 25, 2018
    #1

    IrishRedDevil Full Member

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    So after beating a Top 6 team, and coming from behind to do so (a difficult task especially v Chelsea), has Jose finally found a formation that he will stick with?

    Today we played 4-2-2-2, which seems to suit a lot of our best players.
    It allows Pogba to play his favoured advanced left of a midfield 3, it allows Martial to play LW roaming centrally and it provides Lukaku with more support by having Martial closer to him when he comes central. It also suited Lukaku well, as he can drift to the RW using his pace and surprisingly he has very good crossing ability from the right. Sanchez didn’t have a great game today, but this system allows him to stay centrally and he was often the player pressing and leading the line, while Lukaku drifted to the right.

    .................De Gea
    Valencia Smalling Lindelof Young
    ..........Matic...McTominay
    ......Sanchez.......... Pogba
    ..........Lukaku...Martial

    It reminds me of the system that Pellegrini used at City.
    Of course it requires attacking support from the fullbacks, but we all know that we have to improve in that area in the summer transfer window.

    Long term: Put Bailly in there, upgrade the fullbacks and buy another top midfielder to replace McTominay and that’s a very exciting team.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2018
  2. Feb 25, 2018
    #2

    Rifer Full Member

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    :D Mourinho no stick with a formation.
  3. Feb 25, 2018
    #3

    el3mel Full Member

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    Need to see it some more games first. The second half was very promising.
  4. Feb 25, 2018
    #4

    Carolina Red Moderator Staff

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    Agreed. If they’re able to play like the 2nd half the rest of the season in it, then that’ll do for me.

    Edit to add: @IrishRedDevil - TFM could end up being a help to us at that RB position next season. Might not have to try the transfer market in that case.
  5. Feb 25, 2018
    #5

    Walters_19_MuFc Full Member

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    Be interesting to see it a few more times to see how we get on. I mean, first half wasn't encouraging. It was obvious that it was a new system and that the players had to adapt to it. Second half, we did a lot better, especially when Lingard came on and moved into that right attacking midfield position, which I feel suited him a lot more than Sanchez.

    Going forward, I would like to see this more often. I'd make a few minor changes to the team you posted, but yes, I would like to see Jose stick with it for a bit.
  6. Feb 25, 2018
    #6

    shamans 1 set of sheets, optimistic about chances of sex

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    how is this not just 4-4-2?
  7. Feb 25, 2018
    #7

    Carolina Red Moderator Staff

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    On a lighter note, I’ve just given it a go on FIFA and Crystal Palace didn’t know what hit em :wenger:
  8. Feb 25, 2018
    #8

    BringNaniBack Leaves a bullshit trail behind him

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    Who said we actually played this formation?

    Jose doesn't seem to sway away from his preferred formations very often. It could quite easily have been at 4-3-3 today with Pogba given freedom to roam.

    Ps I do like the 4-2-2-2.
  9. Feb 25, 2018
    #9

    Garethw scored 25-30 goals a season as a right footed RW

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    The wingers don’t hug the touch line and play more narrow.
  10. Feb 25, 2018
    #10

    POF Full Member

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    They will only play it against Chelsea's 3-4-3 because it matches them up. It was a variation of the 4-4-2 he usually plays vs Chelsea with narrow full backs and defensive wingers.

    This time he played a narrow midfield 4 and offensive fullbacks.
  11. Feb 25, 2018
    #11

    Scarecrow Having a week off

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    Jose himself alluded to it during the press conference, talking about a "square" in the middle. He said Matic and McTominay's jobs were to stop Willian and Hazard, while Pogba and Sanchez were suppose to "bring balance in attack". Also Alexis was to be "the third man in attack but also the fourth man in midfield".

    The heatmaps also show clearly that Pogba and Sanchez are playing in line, directly in front of Matic and McTominay, respectively. Not on the wings but in the LAM, RAM positions.

    I don't think we'll stick to it. It was specifically to counter Hazard and Willian who kind of roam all over the place.
  12. Feb 25, 2018
    #12

    BringNaniBack Leaves a bullshit trail behind him

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    Fair enough. Would love to see us stick to it but I imagine we will back to the dreadful 4-2-3-1 next week.
  13. Feb 25, 2018
    #13

    Rifer Full Member

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    We played it in the second half up until Martial subbed off - Martial left striker, Lukaku right, then Pogba LAM and Sanchez RAM.

    The 'square' in the middle mentioned by Jose, we played it with that formation in 2nd half and during the whole of first half.

    First half, we played a left-centric narrower formation of 4-2-3-1 with no right sided midfielder, yeap imbalance - Sanchez as CAM, while Pogba LAM, Martial LW, Lukaku striker, creating some sort of square/diamond among our 4 attacking players.
  14. Feb 25, 2018
    #14

    Vanya Full Member

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    Against the top sides, this system requires Sanchez to put in a considerable amount of defensive work which might frustrate him since he loves to be in the attacking third instead of running towards his own goal in midfield. It will work against most teams but it will be tough to sustain it against the top sides IMO
  15. Feb 25, 2018
    #15

    Scarecrow Having a week off

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    It's not going to work like today, against every team. If Chelsea didn't rely so heavily on Hazard and William to be playmakers, they could've stretched us and expose our middle. Jose knew that apart from those two there's no other danger in that team though. They're playing too many defensive players. A team in 4-2-3-1 could've easily exploited our formation today, ironically.
  16. Feb 25, 2018
    #16

    Jed I. Knight The Mos Eisley Hillbilly

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    It seemed like it was a tactical disposition made first and foremost in an attempt to neutralise Chelsea: Have both Matic and Hazard sitting deep and to sit tight on, and to some extent even man mark Hazard and Willian, while Pogba and Sanchez were under clear instructions to try and interrupt the supply by putting pressure on Drinkwater and Kante. I think we might struggle more in this formation against teams that line up differently, where we have to focus on zonal defending rather than man on man defending.

    I think a slightly adapted version more akin to a traditional 4-4-2, where Pogba and Lingard are essentially narrow wide players, with Matic and McTominay still sitting a bit deeper, could work though. Sanchez might flourish in that roaming role next to Lukaku, and Pogba and Lingard are both excellent at contributing from deeper positions. We'd still be very reliant on full backs providing width, though.

    A 4-4-2 has a flat(ter) midfield. What we put out today was three distinct lines of two players each in front of the back four.
  17. Feb 25, 2018
    #17

    sincher "I will cry if Rooney leaves"

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    The system certainly was better today. Sanchez had a poor game though, has to adapt.
  18. Feb 25, 2018
    #18

    settembrini Full Member

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    It was better than 4-2-3-1 would have been.

    The obvious problem was the full backs. They have by far the hardest job in this formation and both Young and Valencia struggled.
  19. Feb 25, 2018
    #19

    IrishRedDevil Full Member

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    I did, after watching it with my own eyes :)
  20. Feb 25, 2018
    #20

    Bwuk Full Member

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    Because we didn’t play with any wingers.

    I think this formation suits our squad perfectly apart from the full backs. We don’t have good enough full backs. It’d help Sanchez and Pogba though.
  21. Feb 25, 2018
    #21

    VivaObertan Transfer Voyeur

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    Wasn't today pretty much Atletico's setup with the addition of a man marking job on Hazard?
  22. Feb 25, 2018
    #22

    Kazi Full Member

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    Formation is really not that important tbh
  23. Feb 25, 2018
    #23

    Trophy Room Full Member

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    These numbers are pointless. Martial was often seen coming off the left wing.
  24. Feb 25, 2018
    #24

    Bwuk Full Member

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    He wasn’t man marked at all. He played on the left and McTominay and Valencia were covering our right side.

    It was a 4222 clear as day. Brazil used to use this formation years ago but they had much better full backs at the time (Cafu and Carlos).
  25. Feb 25, 2018
    #25

    Bwuk Full Member

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    Because he was playing against Chelsea’s right sided CB Azpiliceuta. Lukaku went right against Rudiger more.
  26. Feb 25, 2018
    #26

    Faetheshire86 Full Member

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    I mentioned it in the post match thread today, was the most interesting thing from the performance. I felt offensively it was closer to a diamond with Sanchez being ahead and slightly more central than Pogba, but just small details, was a clear 4-2-2-2 while defending.

    As you said it definitely addresses some of the glaring issues we have had in some of the bigger games this year and last. Is it any surprise when we get players around Lukaku he looks better? The first goal shows what happens when you get good attacking players playing closer to each other. Give that three the rest of the season to build an understanding with each other, instead of chopping and changing every week, we might actually see some cohesive attacking play.

    That said, I'm pretty sure it will be used against Chelsea's system only
  27. Feb 25, 2018
    #27

    Rajma Full Member

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    I really hope that second half was down to us and not Chelsea being completely dog shit and giving us acres of time and space on the ball. Potential is there if implemented correctly, hope it carries over to our next game.
  28. Feb 25, 2018
    #28

    Bwuk Full Member

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    I wouldn’t be surprised if we play it against Liverpool. Cuts down the space for Salah/Mane to run into and in theory Firmino should at least have someone on him with another spare regardless of where he drops into.

    It’s not like Liverpool’s midfield will carve us apart, it’s their front 3 that’s the worry (much like Chelsea).
  29. Feb 25, 2018
    #29

    EyeInTheSky Full Member

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    Full backs are key no matter which formation we use. Absolutely attorcious all season bar 1 maybe 2 games in terms of atttacking or attacking support
  30. Feb 25, 2018
    #30

    Acole9 Outstanding

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    If we were playing two up top, then they were playing very wide.
  31. Feb 25, 2018
    #31

    DWelbz19 Correctly predicted Portugal to win Euro 2016

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    I think the biggest problem was/is the defensive positions to take up for Alexis and Pogba. Alexis was happy to get stuck in like he always does but there were times he didn’t really know where to position himself.

    All well and good to say he’s going to be the third man between midfield and attack but it’s tougher finding specific positions to take up.
  32. Feb 25, 2018
    #32

    AP88 Full Member

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    Sanchez up front, Lingard next to Pogba.
  33. Feb 25, 2018
    #33

    Rajma Full Member

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    Could work very well that, we need much better full-backs though that needs to be addressed.
  34. Feb 25, 2018
    #34

    SS Full Member

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    This and the 442 diamond are formations that could be great for us with better full-backs.
  35. Feb 25, 2018
    #35

    Faetheshire86 Full Member

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    I wouldn't complain, I said when we were 1-0 down today and playing really poorly that I'd be happy with us sticking with that formation. I would be shocked though. I think it matched up better defensively against Chelsea. We could afford to have two up top because they had three central defenders. Martial and Lukaku were used to stop Rudiger and Azpilicueta from carrying the ball out from defence, which they have had a lot of success with this season.

    Against Liverpool I expect us to do what we have been doing. Fullbacks tucked in, wingers playing as wingbacks
  36. Feb 25, 2018
    #36

    Vanya Full Member

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    Yeah that would work, as it did today when Lingard came on (i expected him to start over martial with sanchez lukaku and pog). But ideally we should be looking for a way to get the best out of Martial because IMO Martial is a better player.

    That being said a better player is not necessarily better for the team. Even though Martial created two good chances today (one leading to an assist for him) we cannot afford to have the lack of work rate that he showed today. Martial keeps playing to feet instead of running beyond the defense. Lingard on the other hand with his constant movement creates more disorganization and gaps in the opposition defense. I think Lingard might take his place against Palace
  37. Feb 25, 2018
    #37

    AP88 Full Member

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    Martial’s talent is eclipsed by Sanchez’s tenacity (although he hasn’t really showcased it yet in a United shirt yet)

    I think 4-2-2-2/4-diamond-2 will resurrect Rashford as well; he’s a woeful winger, while not quite mature enough to play as a lone striker. Up top, central and in tandem with Lukaku/Sanchez will bring him back to his instinctive best around the penalty box. Plus it allows Zlatan plenty of support if he ever gets back onto the pitch.

    I’m surprised it’s taken Mourinho 18 months with no proper wingers and a load of strikers to conclude that he needs to adapt his system accordingly.
  38. Feb 25, 2018
    #38

    WR10 Full Member

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    It is godly. Sanchez and Pogba in their dream roles. Matic and (x) midfielder in that holding role. Martial/Rashford and Lukaku playing the channels up front. What more can you ask for? It was flawless today in the second half.
  39. Feb 25, 2018
    #39

    VivaObertan Transfer Voyeur

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    Were you at the game today? He was clearly man marked by McTominay..
  40. Feb 26, 2018
    #40

    DevilRed Full Member

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    I think people should know by now that Mourinho changes his gameplans per opponent.

    We will therefore never have a "long term" strategy like klopp the clown who only knows how to play one way.

    Im guessing against palace we will see something similar but maybe in the mold of a 4-3-3 like against everton rather than the 4-2-2-2 against chelski.