High Press | Does it work?

RDCR07

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I'd be interested to see/know what Sancho's overall defensive contributions are. I've not seen enough of him at Dortmund or United to know but I have this impression that he's not ever going to be a workhorse but would love to see stats that prove me wrong
I think when you compare him to the likes of Pogba and Greenwood especially he is better off at tracking back. He isn’t going to be a Tevez type but he recognizes the importance of supporting the fullback and at least runs back. Greenwood is 20 and still doesn’t consistently do it. That’s also on the manager. He surely would have seen this but doesn’t push Mason to track back even time we lose the ball.
 

Hammondo

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It’s scary when he says at the end they aren’t going to do anything about the manager and we are stable in that aspect.
Man when they put up our next 8 (I think 8) matches, holy hell I can't see us doing anything but falling down the table.
 

RDCR07

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Man when they put up our next 8 (I think 8) matches, holy hell I can't see us doing anything but falling down the table.
That is a dreadful run. I see the pressure Ole will face like Arteta did at the beginning. Honestly out of those 18 points I will be very surprised if we managed to score even 8 or 9 points.
 

RDCR07

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Good interview, he's openly criticizing coaching and saying out loud we've ended up with too many attacking players who are poor off the ball.
Yeah I think this Bruno-Pogba experiment is over. It’s so obvious they can’t play in the same team as a #10 and #8 cause we are so poor off the ball and defensively. Bruno runs around everywhere by himself and Pogba doesn’t even cover the areas he should playing a central mid. Just let Pogba leave and get a proper DM and a proper deeper lying playmaker.
 

Beachryan

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When you manage anything, the first thing you do is analyse your resources in context of what you're looking to achieve. If you're managing car sales, and your team is a trio of 55+ geezers, the optimal management strategy isn't to rely on data-driven insights, regimented KPI adherence and looking to machine learning to optimise your CRM. Maybe you can move towards those things in time, but your strategy has to take into account your resources. So your strategy should leverage what those geezers are good at.

Same is true for us. We cannot play a high press with the players currently getting minutes. Firstly, Ronaldo is the anti-press - I believe he was literally the least pressing forward in European football last season, no matter this. Pogba is useless at the press, Matic is another anti-press. So, if you're going to field these players, you have to take that into account with your strategy.

There absolutely is a way to coach these players into a coherent, controlled formation. It has to involve a lower-block, has to involve a mass 'retreat' of the midfield and has to involve a more measured, dominant style with the ball. LVG would do it well imo, depressingly. Hell, even Jose's low block would help our current issues out. Compress the space between the lines, reduce the give-aways when players are up field and so forth. Go back to f*cking basics: if you don't concede, you're not going to lose.

What is infuriating is imaginging a slightly different series of decisions. A front 3 of Rashford, Sancho and Greenwood in front of Fernandes, playing a head of McFred is a pressing machine. Energy galore, decent pace and then you can bring on Lingard, Cavani etc and keep the press-party going. It's actually a good strategy, with the players you have.

Instead, Ole is either too dumb or too weak to see that he's using the wrong players for the right strategy.
 

youmeletsfly

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Man when they put up our next 8 (I think 8) matches, holy hell I can't see us doing anything but falling down the table.
If he loses the next two games he'll be out the next morning. Ronaldo didn't come here to battle for a 6th place finish, he'll put pressure on the owners and they'll sack him.
 

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Yeah I think this Bruno-Pogba experiment is over. It’s so obvious they can’t play in the same team as a #10 and #8 cause we are so poor off the ball and defensively. Bruno runs around everywhere by himself and Pogba doesn’t even cover the areas he should playing a central mid. Just let Pogba leave and get a proper DM and a proper deeper lying playmaker.
Do you think it would work if we play a proper 4-3-3. Pogba-Matic-Bruno.
I see a couple of benefits playing Bruno deeper. First it would close the gap between defenders and the midfield pivot we have today. It would also makes us more creative in the areas we need more creativety. Today we don't use Brunos creativity enough, to much is about him scoring. I think the balance would be better and it would make our " luxury" players upfront continue focus on attacking.
 

RDCR07

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Do you think it would work if we play a proper 4-3-3. Pogba-Matic-Bruno.
I see a couple of benefits playing Bruno deeper. First it would close the gap between defenders and the midfield pivot we have today. It would also makes us more creative in the areas we need more creativety. Today we don't use Brunos creativity enough, to much is about him scoring. I think the balance would be better and it would make our " luxury" players upfront continue focus on attacking.
It won’t. On paper we can say it’s a 4-3-3 with two #8s but on the field they won’t work like that. They will continue to do their own thing with Bruno playing higher up and pressing for no reason and Pogba also pushing up higher and not tracking back.
 

Lappen

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It won’t. On paper we can say it’s a 4-3-3 with two #8s but on the field they won’t work like that. They will continue to do their own thing with Bruno playing higher up and pressing for no reason and Pogba also pushing up higher and not tracking back.
You could be right!
I would like to see it before I feel ok with taking one of them out of the start eleven.

I really don't understand why Ole push Bruno that high to do the press when no one els is doing it with him. Every team use the space it creates and it makes the midfield running around like headless chickens...
 

amolbhatia50k

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We aren't a proper pressing team. We are a space in behind team.
 

Sandikan

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Our high press is weird. Our players stand way too far off their mark and when he gets the ball then they sprint at him. I've never understood this. Why do we let them make the pass? Why aren't we already up on the player rather than allow them outlets like we do? If we are going to do a high press then we shouldn't give them any space. Take away all the outlets to either force a turnover or to force them to hoof it away.

With that being said, I don't like a high press. The problem I have with it is that if we do win the ball back high up the field, they already have their players back and there isn't much space behind to attack into. I prefer a half press. This is to allow them possession up until half. At that point press hard and when we force a turnover there will be more space between the last defender and the goal...
If you carry out a high press effectively it's superb.
The simple logic that if you do it high, you're getting after their weaker players on the ball, rather than doing it in centre mid or further forward where players are typically better on it.

Clearly it's fraught with risk as you can leave massive holes of space, or you can absolutely fatigue your players. The latter happened when Ole first came in, and we had many muscular issues.
I'm sure Klopp found similar in his initial style too.
 

tomaldinho1

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The thread title is a bit weird. Like, scoring goals, is that good? Or, possession football, does that work?

Of course a high press works, the last teams to win everything of note all press. Title should be, why aren’t United implementing a high press. Especially as Ole said we would build that system when he came in.
 

Hammondo

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We aren't a proper pressing team. We are a space in behind team.
Exactly why we are not playing wey, good teams don't surrender the midfield and just counter attack.
 

kouroux

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It won’t. On paper we can say it’s a 4-3-3 with two #8s but on the field they won’t work like that. They will continue to do their own thing with Bruno playing higher up and pressing for no reason and Pogba also pushing up higher and not tracking back.
Why isn't Ole doing something about it then ? I mean the bit about Bruno doing whatever he wants higher up and Pogba pushing higher leaving massive holes.
I agree with you but I just don't get how Ole lets all that clusterfeck on show without intervening
 

Rajma

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Why isn't Ole doing something about it then ? I mean the bit about Bruno doing whatever he wants higher up and Pogba pushing higher leaving massive holes.
I agree with you but I just don't get how Ole lets all that clusterfeck on show without intervening
Doesn’t want to upset any of his stars, that’s how he got his tag for being a brilliant man manager.
 

RDCR07

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Why isn't Ole doing something about it then ? I mean the bit about Bruno doing whatever he wants higher up and Pogba pushing higher leaving massive holes.
I agree with you but I just don't get how Ole lets all that clusterfeck on show without intervening
Because he doesn’t have a solution. He doesn’t know how. His staff don’t know how. They care about keeping players happy and playing the best players so they can come up with moments of magic.
 

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The thread title is a bit weird. Like, scoring goals, is that good? Or, possession football, does that work?

Of course a high press works, the last teams to win everything of note all press. Title should be, why aren’t United implementing a high press. Especially as Ole said we would build that system when he came in.
The weird thing is, at the start of last season and the season before that, we were in fact pressing quite a bit and even though it was not as coordinated as say Pool or City, we still were pressing decently. During Oles interim period we were working our bollocks off, hence all the muscular injuries a couple of months later.

That "press" we displayed yesterday was laughable. Front 4 gently jogging towards their backline, but with no real effort and desire to win the ball, and then suddenly we're outnumbered in midfield because we committed 4 players to make some half arsed "press"

Ronaldo? Yeah, hes not going to be chasing down CB's like some blood hound, but there is no reason why Sancho/Rashford, Bruno and Greenwood cant press and track back

4231 turns into (or it should at least) 451 when you are defending, but the way we played yesterday it was more like a 424, because the front four "pressed", but didnt track back properly
 

stefan92

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The weird thing is, at the start of last season and the season before that, we were in fact pressing quite a bit and even though it was not as coordinated as say Pool or City, we still were pressing decently. During Oles interim period we were working our bollocks off, hence all the muscular injuries a couple of months later.

That "press" we displayed yesterday was laughable. Front 4 gently jogging towards their backline, but with no real effort and desire to win the ball, and then suddenly we're outnumbered in midfield because we committed 4 players to make some half arsed "press"

Ronaldo? Yeah, hes not going to be chasing down CB's like some blood hound, but there is no reason why Sancho/Rashford, Bruno and Greenwood cant press and track back

4231 turns into (or it should at least) 451 when you are defending, but the way we played yesterday it was more like a 424, because the front four "pressed", but didnt track back properly
Most 4231 systems actually retreat to a 442 while defending, not a 451. Still your point regarding the wingers is absolutely on point. I have no idea what United try to achieve, it is simply not a real system.
 

Smores

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The weird thing is, at the start of last season and the season before that, we were in fact pressing quite a bit and even though it was not as coordinated as say Pool or City, we still were pressing decently. During Oles interim period we were working our bollocks off, hence all the muscular injuries a couple of months later.

That "press" we displayed yesterday was laughable. Front 4 gently jogging towards their backline, but with no real effort and desire to win the ball, and then suddenly we're outnumbered in midfield because we committed 4 players to make some half arsed "press"

Ronaldo? Yeah, hes not going to be chasing down CB's like some blood hound, but there is no reason why Sancho/Rashford, Bruno and Greenwood cant press and track back

4231 turns into (or it should at least) 451 when you are defending, but the way we played yesterday it was more like a 424, because the front four "pressed", but didnt track back properly
Pretty much, it's shocking how our coaches haven't figured out why teams suddenly attack our backline in even numbers. Bruno steps up, our wide players are absent and it's easy to get round our midfield.

Liverpool have a midfield 3 and even they have one of Mane or Salah drop in to make it 4 in midfield most of the time.

When Bruno presses our two wide forwards need to come back and come narrow.
 

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The reason that a high press is effective is because it’s employed immediately that the opposition win the ball.
The intention is for you to win the ball back before the opposition can reset into an attacking formation with passing lanes becoming available.
If you wait until the opposition get up to the halfway line then they’ll be back into formation and your chances of getting the ball are much reduced.
Ergo, press immediately to be effective or stand off to give the opposition time to organise themselves and be ineffective.
You’re promoting ineffective, I’m not sure that you understand that’s what you’re doing but it certainly is.
Trust me...I know this game better than most. I am not promoting ineffectiveness. I'm promoting other ways of playing. A high press is not the be all and end all. I don't mind it. It's much better than parking the bus. I just prefer something between a high press and parking the bus. You don't have to agree with me. i'm just expressing my opinion. But I get it. Klopp and Pep don't do it so it must not work...ugh
 

RDCR07

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The thread title is a bit weird. Like, scoring goals, is that good? Or, possession football, does that work?

Of course a high press works, the last teams to win everything of note all press. Title should be, why aren’t United implementing a high press. Especially as Ole said we would build that system when he came in.
This thread is in a United forum and that too on the main page so obviously it relates to United and the team currently. I don’t care if Liverpool and City press or don’t press. I’m talking about how haphazard our “pressing” is with a couple doing it and the rest just standing still.
 

stefan92

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This thread is in a United forum and that too on the main page so obviously it relates to United and the team currently. I don’t care if Liverpool and City press or don’t press. I’m talking about how haphazard our “pressing” is with a couple doing it and the rest just standing still.
To be fair it is a bit hard to understand just judging from the title that you refer to what United is doing. United does not perform a high press at all, more of a broken press as you yourself correctly say.
 

RDCR07

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To be fair it is a bit hard to understand just judging from the title that you refer to what United is doing. United does not perform a high press at all, more of a broken press as you yourself correctly say.
Literally the first line says this high pressing of “ours”.
 

tomaldinho1

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This thread is in a United forum and that too on the main page so obviously it relates to United and the team currently. I don’t care if Liverpool and City press or don’t press. I’m talking about how haphazard our “pressing” is with a couple doing it and the rest just standing still.
Ok. We have no organised press so it is confusing.

Like saying United’s flying RB, does AWB focus too much on attack?

It’s clearly a great tactic when implemented, I guess we’re still coaching it nearly 3 years from starting.
 

stefan92

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Literally the first line says this high pressing of “ours”.
Right, but tomaldinho1 was wondering about the title of your thread, and I agree with him. Your post made it clear what exactly you mean, no trouble there :)
 

HerbT

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Trust me...I know this game better than most. I am not promoting ineffectiveness. I'm promoting other ways of playing. A high press is not the be all and end all. I don't mind it. It's much better than parking the bus. I just prefer something between a high press and parking the bus. You don't have to agree with me. i'm just expressing my opinion. But I get it. Klopp and Pep don't do it so it must not work...ugh
If you’re talking about a strategy other than a high press then I’m right with you fella.
A high press is just one way of playing football and other strategies are equally, or perhaps more, valid.
The high press is ‘a la mode’ at present but could be laughably out of fashion within a decade.
As example; even in this age of high press football, Pep’s total football (which personally love) seems to come badly unstuck whenever he comes up against Ole and his refreshingly renegade ‘let the dogs off the leash’ approach.
I actually appreciate the contrast in styles - I’ve always loved that sugar ray v Duran thing - it’s the difference that brings the interest etc.
 
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Enigma_87

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It's crazy tbh. It seems like an exaggeration but the players seem to be doing whatever they want.
It's not an exaggeration and yes they are.

We have enough top players to put us through in most games.
 

Daengophile

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High press works for sure - if it's implemented properly. We've seen the impact first hand of having 10 players in the opposition half.

Another part of the problem is what do we do when it's not working? There seems to be no fall-back. No strategy. No plan B or C

The difference this season is CR7 getting frustrated at the lack of service
 

Kramer

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We are not a pressing team. We are a ‘half-hearted’ pressing team with no cohesion.

Bruno is the only one who runs and runs and runs. Mason, Ronaldo, Sancho and to a certain degree Pogba simply do not put
pressure on opposition players.

A half hearted press is much worse than no press at all. It means that at a lot of times your forward players and even midfielders can get taken out of play by quick decisive passes by the opposition. This hurts us time and again.

Ole has 2 options:

1) To keep playing high press: Drop Ronaldo, Sancho, Pogba to the bench. A front 6 of Rashford, Cavani, Greenwood, Bruno , Fred, Mct has the potential to become a cohesive pressing machine (though Greenwood needs to be coached)

2) To stop playing the high press: Drop back and sit deeper and let the opposition come to you. And then hit them on the counter. Then you play Pogba as your ‘quarterback’ and use Rashford / Greenwood’s / Ronaldo’s sprint pace to good effect.

This in between approach is not working. I think it’s because Ole is not clear in his head. He had a clear philosophy of playing a high pressing 4-2-3-1 before. But players he has brought in - Ronaldo / Sancho do not fit that system. And now we have a muddled approach.
 

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Sancho Rashford Greenwood

Can do it

The “problem” is Bruno, if he plays more advanced the team in not balanced

If he plays as a cm would be useless and inconsistent in a role where losing a tackle or missing a pressing is a problem

Also Pogba, in that role plays well only for france
 

SeeMe

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Can someone tell me which EPL champion teams for the past 6-7 years do not have high pressing attackers?
 

stefan92

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Can someone tell me which EPL champion teams for the past 6-7 years do not have high pressing attackers?
I don't think Leicester were a high pressing team when they won it? I remember them mostly counter attacking.
 

RDCR07

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Sancho Rashford Greenwood

Can do it

The “problem” is Bruno, if he plays more advanced the team in not balanced

If he plays as a cm would be useless and inconsistent in a role where losing a tackle or missing a pressing is a problem

Also Pogba, in that role plays well only for france
Greenwood is not a hard worker. He doesn’t press nor does he track back.