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England since the World Cup in FM Terms


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Just wondering what people are making of England under Don Fabio since the World Cup. I'm talking specifically about describing the tactics in FM terms.

Do we think much has changed?

There was a lot of talk about how Capello was playing a very rigid 4-4-2 in South Africa.

Against Hungary, in the first friendly after the World Cup, Don Fabio experimented with 4-5-1/4-3-3 and we saw a much more fluid England. However, as soon as the Euro 2012 qualifiers started, it was back to 4-4-2. Or was it 4-4-2? Some might argued that it was more a 4-4-1-1 formation with Rooney definitely playing deeper and roaming more. It was also more fluid.

So what do we think of the 'new' tactics of Capello. It seems to me that not a great deal has changed. Ultimately, the shape is the same but the patterns of play have been slightly different. Certainly, England have been more rigid.

This was the line-up for the last England match again Switzerland:

GK    	Hart        	Goalkeeper (defend)
DR    	Johnson        	Wingback (auto)
DC    	Jagielka    	Defender (defend)
DC    	Lescott        	Defender (defend)
DL    	Cole        	Fullback (auto)
MR    	Walcott        	Winger    (attack)    
MC    	Gerrard       	Center-mid or maybe Box-to-Box (support)
MC    	Barry        	Centre-mid (defend)
ML    	Milner        	Wide midfielder (attack)
AM/ST   Rooney        	Inside forward or maybe Complete Forward (support)
ST    	Defoe        	Poacher (attack)

Not sure whether to put Rooney at AM or ST but I think in FM terms he is probably actually a forward. However, I think the inside forward role would suit what he is currently doing for the team. He's very much the second striker and maybe slightly withdrawn really.

I also think that the philosophy has changed slightly in FM terms. It's certainly a lot less rigid and more balanced, I think.

However, with Capello calling up Kevin Davies as a potentially to fit into his usual system, in which he really likes to play a big, strong forward/target man style player to hold the ball up and get the best out of Rooney, we could see a return to something more in line with what we went to the World Cup with. It's a typical Capello stubbornness which seems to me a lack of flexibility in terms of the system he utilises.

So, opinions on this, of course keeping it in terms of FM tactics?

Have we seen a change in England's tactical play? And would anyone care to guess the line-up and expected tactics for the upcoming match?

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yet again falling back to ZM...;)

http://www.zonalmarking.net/2010/09/07/switzerland-1-3-england-rooney-position/

They have it down as a 4411 for sure, wrong footed wingers on both flanks when johnson came on, by the sound of it, the CM area was static, so Barry CM/Defend, Gerrard Advanced playmaker/ support?

Cole and johnson both as WB's, Rooney indeed as inside forward i'd say.

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I'd go along with most of that Jaycar. Sounds about right to me. Good old Zonal Marking, eh? ;)

The TC could do with a new role for MR/ML called 'Inverted Winger' or something like that, with a similar type of effect to the existing Inside Forward role for AMR/AML. I know that they will tend to come inside anyway if they are on the opposite flank to their preferred foot. Would be good to have the role though.

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How bad were England last night?

I doubt anyone wants to recreate their tactics but here goes anyway! :D

ZM article - http://www.zonalmarking.net/2010/10/12/england-0-0-montenegro-tactics/

englandmontenegro.jpg

4-4-1-1 from right-to-left:

Hart

G. Johnson, Ferdinand, Lescott, Cole

A. Johnson, Gerrard, Barry, Young

Rooney

Crouch

Philosophy - Rigid

Passing - Default

Creative Freedom - Default

Closing Down - Default

Tackling - Default

Marking - Zonal

Crossing - Default

Roaming - Default

GK    	Hart        	Goalkeeper (defend)
DR    	G. Johnson      Wingback (auto)
DC    	Ferdinand	Defender (defend)
DC    	Lescott        	Defender (defend)
DL    	Cole        	Fullback (auto)
MR    	A. Johnson      Winger    (attack) with some advanced customisation
MC    	Gerrard       	Deep-lying playmaker (support)
MC    	Barry        	Centre-mid (defend)
ML    	Young		Winger    (attack) with some advanced customisation
AM	Rooney        	Inside forward (support)
ST    	Crouch		Target man (attack)

Out of the two fullbacks, neither got forward as often as they should considering we were playing 'inverted' wrong footed wide midfield players who were cutting inside, but Johnson was the more attacking natured, thus the wingback role.

In the middle of the park, Gerrard was unusually deep. He rarely got forward and seemed to be dictating the play from a deeper position alongside Barry. For me, this definitely didn't get the best out of our most dynamic player, but he was still one of the few to put in a half decent performance.

Out wide, we played with two 'inverted' and wrong footed wide midfielders. On FM, you would need to make some advanced changes as there is no 'inverted' role for a wide player at the moment (similar to 'inside forward' for AMR/AML). This made attacks extremely narrow with both wide players always looking to come inside into the centre of the pitch. It ultimately played into the hands of the opposition. I would like to have seen them swapping during the game to offer something different and give some real width.

Up front it was clearly a 1-1, with Rooney playing as a withdrawn forward. Inside forward role would do the job here. And Crouchy would probably be best as Target Man attack, as he very much led the line.

Not much changed with the subs to be honest. They were more or less like for like.

That's my take on things anyway.

So, any thoughts on where it all went wrong for England last night?

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Very true, easy to tweak the bog standard winger role though.

I'm not sure how well they would cut inside from a deeper position, gonna try that out later....

Ive been using cut inside on my ML left winger, it works very well actually. used it with jovetic with quite frankly devastating results. though you may need to tweak RFD to dictate roughly where he is cutting inside, looking at the places young was getting on the ball i'd go with RFD Mixed, with Often Ive found its more like a modern wide striker

Crouchaldinho

for me the problem starts in midfield with gerrard, not in terms of performance, but rather capello's deployment of him. he was too deep all night, and made no surging runs to break past the 3 man mid sitting between him and rooney, which left direct passing (his was very good), but it meant we didnt have enough bodies forward and our attacks where dealt with easily, though i also wonder if he wasnt making the runs because there was little space to run into. Normally defoe will peel into the channels, dragging a marker with him, which creates space for an onrushing mid, with Crouch you dont really get any of that.

Add to that a opposition 3 man mid, and 2 inverting wingers adding to the congestion and you get a bogged mid that cuts off gerrard

personally i would have gone with a wilshere for crouch, our best chances came from a couple of slide passes into rooney, get young and johnson swapping to keep the width at times when needed, and allowing us to have passing triangle in midfield, thus negating their one man midfield advantage

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So, any thoughts on where it all went wrong for England last night?

Don't let sites llike zonalmarking fool you, tactics are just one aspect constituting a successful side. The current English squad lacks creativity, finesse and scoring ability if Rooney and one or two other players aren't in their best shape. If you remember the WC 2010 qualification campaign your team won matches by bullying the opponent around, not by playing better football.

It's hardly surprising that facing a confident and tactically sound opponent proved difficult. Shifting Gerard a few yards in any direction probably wouldn't have changed much. Your only way forward is to change the composition of the squad. Spain did it, they added determination and team work to the technical ability they always had. Germany did it, they (re)added the technical ability missing during the last 10 to 15 years to their stereotypical determination.

On the highest level you need more than physicality today. No matter what you pay your national coach, he can not add the missing components. The academy system and pro clubs have to do that and the sooner the FA and the public realize that the better for English football.

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Crouchaldinho

for me the problem starts in midfield with gerrard, not in terms of performance, but rather capello's deployment of him. he was too deep all night, and made no surging runs to break past the 3 man mid sitting between him and rooney, which left direct passing (his was very good), but it meant we didnt have enough bodies forward and our attacks where dealt with easily, though i also wonder if he wasnt making the runs because there was little space to run into. Normally defoe will peel into the channels, dragging a marker with him, which creates space for an onrushing mid, with Crouch you dont really get any of that.

Add to that a opposition 3 man mid, and 2 inverting wingers adding to the congestion and you get a bogged mid that cuts off gerrard

personally i would have gone with a wilshere for crouch, our best chances came from a couple of slide passes into rooney, get young and johnson swapping to keep the width at times when needed, and allowing us to have passing triangle in midfield, thus negating their one man midfield advantage

I agree with your thoughts about Gerrard and the two 'inverted' wide midfielders. I wish we'd given Gerrard a bit more license to get forward instead of this double pivot business in the midfield. Plus, the wings should have swapped and offered some proper width down the flanks.

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Don't let sites llike zonalmarking fool you, tactics are just one aspect constituting a successful side.

Don't worry Blurps. I think I'll be fine. ;)

Seeing as this is a tactics forum, I thought we might talk about the tactics. :p

To be honest, my own personnel theory is a bit controversial and simplisitic, but I actually believe it's all David Beckham's fault. :D

Under Sven, towards the end, we were a set-piece side relying on Beckham's delivery. We played a narrow 4-4-2, didn't play with a lot of width, and didn't actually score that often from open play. With Beckham in the side, however, we had a world class set-piece taker, so a corner or a free-kick was always an opportunity.

Without Beckham, we've lost that, and now we have to rely on creativity in open play. Ultimately, we aren't good enough, we don't get the ball into wide positions enough and we don't create enough.

It's no coincidence that everything started going wrong when McClaren dropped Beckham the first time around! It's David Beckham's fault that England are one dimensional. You heard it here first. :p

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