Formation and player position head fk

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by UpWithRivers, Feb 10, 2018.

  1. Feb 10, 2018
    #1

    UpWithRivers Full Member

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    Apart from England it seems that we suffer the most from the disease of formationitis and player position fungus.
    Most teams have a style. A formation. A philosophy. Man City being the prime example. Us? We are confused. Too many questions. What's our preferred formation? Where does Pogba play? Where does Sanchez fit in. Who us our right winger? Who is our number 10? What's our best center back pairing. I can go on and on. Yes we can debate the answers but this is more about identifying our identity. To be fair to Mourinho I think he inherited a massively unbalanced team and he is getting there. But when. Chelsea, Barca etc seem to be able to chop and change managers who are able to come in and stamp an identity on the team. Is there a worse club than ours?
  2. Feb 10, 2018
    #2

    Keeps It tidy Hates Messi

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    For a while now Arsenal has been just following whatever the trend was in Football
  3. Feb 10, 2018
    #3

    el3mel Full Member

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    I assume that any forum for any top club will always have these kinds of questions ? Otherwise there will be nothing to discuss about in any football club forum.
  4. Feb 10, 2018
    #4

    Dir Wangem Banned

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    I disagree.

    We have a clear philosophy(ugh, this word has been ruined) and playstyle. City are just much better right now.
  5. Feb 10, 2018
    #5

    Rifer Full Member

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    Hmm, are we really that bad?
    No.
  6. Feb 10, 2018
    #6

    UpWithRivers Full Member

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    I also hate the philosophy word...but what else to use. What is ours then? What's our preferred formation? Is Sanchez going to play on the right?

    This is not saying we are rubbish. This is a question of understanding what formation we play and which players fit it.

    no. Mist teams don't have these questions. They have the questions if is this player good enough to play this role.
  7. Feb 10, 2018
    #7

    el3mel Full Member

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    Really doubt other clubs forums their fans aren't talking about best formations and where these players should play. We were even asking these questions during SAF. These are basic football discussions.
  8. Feb 10, 2018
    #8

    Dir Wangem Banned

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    - 3 midfielders.
    - High defensive line vs teams outside the top 6.
    - Low defensive line vs teams in the top 6.
    - Tough players(both physically and mentally).

    Just because we have a couple of players we're not 100% what to do with yet, it doesn't mean that we don't know what general direction we're headed for.
  9. Feb 10, 2018
    #9

    GM K Full Member

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    I'll be very surprised if any United fan is confused about our formation/style.

    Jose has a flexible tactical approach to football. He sets up his teams based on the opposition. Nevertheless, i think in about 70% of our games, we have used the 4-2-3-1 formation. In the rest, we have either played 4-3-3 or 3-5-2 depending on the opposition.

    As for Pogba, Jose clarified that some days ago. He's simply a midfielder whose specific midfield role in a game is determined by the tactic deployed for that game. I am fine with this because I'm convinced Pogba is the most versatile midfielder in world football. He has enough in his locker to fit well into most midfield roles.
  10. Feb 10, 2018
    #10

    Zahed New Member

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    Mourihno's tactics are anything but flexible. He plays 4-2-3-1 most of the time. Even the last home game against Hull. Why are we playing 2 holding mids at home, against a bottom of the table team? It's only when Pogba came on that the system was changed to 4-3-3 that we actually started playing. Whether it's Yeovil or City, the formation is 4-2-3-1 - it's like playing with 6 defenders!!
  11. Feb 10, 2018
    #11

    eat_grass Full Member

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    You can either change your tactics (formation) to suite your players, or you can train your players to suite your tactics (formation). If not against Yeovil, then when should he train his players in the 4-2-3-1? If it's the formation he thinks is most likely to lead to success in the future or in big games (Champions League), then when else would the players learn how to run it?
  12. Feb 10, 2018
    #12

    Rifer Full Member

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    I'll clarify my prev post. It's good OP is bringing focus into this.

    We do have an identity (for ease of understanding, let's use that word since that's the main thing which I understand OP is trying to point out) ~ style of play, formation(s), player selection, first team, etc. But the thing is, atm, not at the level of lets say MCity, Spurs, Ajax, Atletico Madrid and Barca, all of which have a complete and very clear identity in formation, players and style of play, and so on. For us, it's still a work in progress after we've just got a key player in the form of Sanchez, so that's one other player confirm first name on the teamsheet. Plus, our potential key players overall are not "firing" convincingly, compare to the key players of other teams.

    Let's look at this; Lukaku doesn't score enough goals yet for a top team leading striker, Lingard finally scoring regularly but for how long, Martial is still not convincing enough with those inconsistencies but for sure a key player, Mata playing well but poor choice against top 6, Rashford's inconsistencies, Pogba's on and off form still incapable of putting consistent performances in midfield two and the unnecessary bookings, our CBs players are often missing due to injuries and what not and those horrendous silly mistakes, and so on. Hence all the constant tinkering of players selection (that is quite rare for Jose's team if we look at his many previous teams different clubs, he rarely change the first team players). Can't blame Mourinho here that much, and salute to players like Valencia, De Gea, Matic etc who continues to perform consistently and remain in the first team. So, as long as the players are not performing, one part of our identity (first teamsheet) won't be realized.

    -------------??-------------
    ---??---Sanchez---??---
    -------???---Matic-------
    --??--??--??--Valencia--
    --------De Gea------------

    *Sanchez either LM or more likely CAM.
    *Pogba is certain, but specifically where and in which formation.
    *Formation may retain next season, or changes to 4-3-3, not constant change between the two formations throughout next season.
    *Martial, Lukaku, Lingard, Shaw, Rashford and who knows even Lindelof can make in those permanently.
    *Zlatan, Rojo and Bailly are highly rated but not in, atm.
    *The rest of the players are useful squad players, and could surprises us. We need a good squad to win a season.

    Anyhow, I'm quite positive we'll get it right, despite some of the obvious problems which is quite normal. I get it that the squad is youthful + good experiences with the more older players + good squad, but seriously the potential key players have to step-up and grab those spots. As proven, Mourinho kept on giving them chances. Fail to do so, or dilly-daily, then nope, that identity of a typical Mourinho's team + bits of Manchester United's soul (attacking, entertaining and youth, which are rare for his previous team but present anyway this time) is far from complete. That being said, we're not doing too shabby either; currently 2nd in the league, still competing in FA Cup and Champions League.

    Basically,
    Typical Mourinho's team,
    • Strong defensive system. Defensively we're that good. ✓
    • Tactical defending. Different instructions every game, negate expected patterns of attacks and exploiting weaknesses. ✓
    • Good leading striker. Jury is still out of Lukaku. Doesn't have to score a lot of goals though. X
    • At least one playmaker and No.10 worthy kind of attacker. Pogba and Sanchez. ✓
    • Two consistent CB pairing, and consistent Back 4. Ugh. X
    • Formation mainly 4-2-3-1 preferred but will be adjusted according to needs. It's not strict. ✓
    • Common style of play is actually attacking and posession based, but not high energy pressing, slow-build up though, and retain shape/structure throughout the game. But Jose will change that style whenever he pleases anyway eg. in some games we can be turn into sudden counter-attacking team with high-maniac pressing, or totally boring defensive park-the-bus tactic. ✓
    • Strong midfield selections. Not quite there. Almost. X
    • At least one very good important holding midfielder. Yep, Matic. ✓
    • Attackers and CAM should help in defending, and do it well. Ours are good enough, and Martial improved this aspect. ✓
    • Can actually play entertaining attacking football, if the playmakers and attackers are on form and hungry, if it matches with his usual tactics which is most games. anyway. When they're off form, we look so dull. ✓
    • Good squad players, who follows instructions to the tee. Not all unfortunately. Some players are prone to mistakes and doesn't follow Jose's instructions. Some are in sync with him. X
    • One of the best in conceding less, but not so much in scoring. ✓
    • Winning mentality. Mixed. Not quite there yet. Some players had it, some seems to not yet adopting it. X
    Common/Historic/Valued identity of Manchester United's team,
    • Playing our youth as part of the first team, and squad. Rashford. Lingard. Pogba. McTominay. ✓
    • Promoting the youth to the first team, giving them chances and access to the next level even if they won't play for the club after then. ✓
    • Exciting football every games. Not that much. X
    • Total attacking football every games. Naah. X
    • Counter-attacks every games. Sadly, barely, although may have to do with majority of opponents parked the bus against us. X
    • British players. Yup, enough. ✓
    • Exciting players every position. Oh yes. Always some to cheer about. ✓
    • Developing players, especially the young ones. Yeap, surprisingly Mourinho did and doing it. ✓
    • Finally proper No. 7 player Alexis Sanchez, and a young worthy No. 11 Anthony Martial (for those obsessed with our two historic numbers). ✓
    • Making headlines, new records and grabbing attentions everywhere not for the wrong reasons. It's a tradition. ✓
    • Never-say-die attitude. Comeback to win games. Fergie Times. Sadly, no... not yet. X
    In my perspective, that's our current identity, it's a mixed of incomplete Mourinho's intended identity plus some of Manchester United's trademark values. So, next season and so on, we'll see improving version or a more realized identity of Jose Mourinho's Manchester United Squad, however you want to see and describe it.
  13. Feb 10, 2018
    #13

    Distracted Steward Full Member

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    I don't know about having a clear playing style. At least in the attack, any identity we have is fledgling and depends as much on the opposition as our squad.
  14. Feb 11, 2018
    #14

    UpWithRivers Full Member

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    Excellent post. You should get a medal! I think Mourinho is a frustrated as anyone. That's why he keeps challenging the players to step up. Pogba being the latest example. Unfortunately he inherited a totally confused team. But he is getting there. If 4-2-3-1 is the system then I would add-
    • Can Pogba step up to be the box yo box player in a midfield 2
    • Will Lingard become the creative number 10. He scores goals and his energy and drive is immence but he is not quite the Fabregas creator linking midfield and attack.
    • Who is our right sided player
    • Lukaku needs to improve. For me he needs to be more imposing more than anything. For his size he is no bully. Im not sure how much this can be coached.
    • Left back situation resolved.
    • Settled back four.
  15. Feb 11, 2018
    #15

    GM K Full Member

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    4-2-3-1 is not a defensive formation. Why do people keep insinuating this? The players who occupy the '2' don't have to be players who only defend. One can be a pure defensive midfielder while the second can be a deep lying midfielder. The other myth about it is that it leaves you with only two midfielders. Not true at all. A core aim of 4-2-3-1 is to give you more midfielders than the opposing team.
    It is now the preferred formation by many elite teams in Europe.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  16. Feb 11, 2018
    #16

    UpWithRivers Full Member

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    Another game that proves we seem to have no formation plan or the players to fit that system. I see its supposed to be 4-2-3-1 but then it doesn't work and the formation changes or the implementation of that system at least. The 4-2-3-1 doesn't work because Pogba can't or wont play as a two, martial is in the wrong position and lindgard can't link up midfield and attack. Why do we keep doing this. First decide our 'formation' - OK 4-2-3-2-1. What that means. 2 holding midfielder in the two or one defence and one box to box etc. Then buy players to fit that system. Simples