But I can’t understand why everyone is so critical and abusive about the greatest and the simplest of all formations: 4-4-2.
Fans say that it’s last century, we’ve moved on from this; pundits say that it’s rigid and easy to break down as you lack a man in the middle and play with two banks of four, straight lines.
Hell, even my neighbour who’s never been to a stadium or watched a game on telly and only plays football on his PC, when challenging me to a game of PES (which I had never played before) said that I was stupid to use this system as it’s for ‘noobs’!
So, I asked myself if I was wrong. Maybe it’s outdated, rigid, etc? So, I had a look through it. Back four seems ok. You have got balance all over, attacking runs and cover for the others when they lose the ball.
Two centre-halves must have perfect understanding and slightly different roles: one – organiser who marshals the defence, and the other who would listen to him. More often than not one of the two is a big guy whose heading is second to none and another is more clever, reads the game anticipating every opponents’ move. And every defender must be ready to put himself on the line for the team.
Two in the middle seems fine, too. One is a defensive midfielder who works his socks off and does the dirty work whilst the other is rather more creative, who gets into the opponents box, moves the ball, controlling the play. It doesn’t mean that defensive midfielders won’t go forward and the attacking one gives up defending, no. Just that each one has his responsibilities on the pitch. I don’t think the game is too complicated: defenders defend, attackers attack. But let’s continue the analysis. Two wingers who work down the flanks from one corner flag to the other seems not too bad to me. You put a guy with pace on the wing who can beat one or two and puts a decent ball in the box, and you guarantee goals.
And two up front: one who drops off and one in the mix. The one who drops off should be quick and with ability to pick out a pass for the one up front to finish, but also be able to put the ball in the back of the net himself when needed. And the lad up front more often than not; big and powerful with the ability to hold the ball and bring others into play and also scores plenty.
That’s how I would play. But I’m not the LFC manager and never will be. Brendan Rodgers is – and he has gone with tiki-taka; as yet creating absolutely no goals from open play in the league – the formation should be called false XI!
Here’s some food for thought on one of our most popular anthems – the lyrics are:
All round the fields of Anfield Road,
Where once we watched King Kenny play – AND COULD HE PLAY! (not false number nine!)
We had Heighway on the wing, (not a small midfielder with 90% pass completion in his own half)
We had dreams and songs to sing,
Of the glory round the fields of Anfield Road.
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