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3-4-3


David
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It looks that way. I was wrong in what I said pre Forest - I didn’t think we’d create enough. But with the front 3’s fluidity of movement we look very good.

Bielik would be ideal in this formation too. Cold easily change to a 4 if required. Shinnie is key as well. His passing is much better and is threading through to front 3. Great energy with Knight. Promising signs! 

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Not convinced by this formation right now.

Knight/Shinnie are playing well defensively but not offering us enough going forward, Buchanan/Byrne get forward but go nowhere and the front three are basically left to play amongst themselves to no avail.

You see Jozwiak and Lawrence get the ball outside the box and not receive any help for too often. Knight/Shinnie are holding their positions despite the fact there’s three defenders behind them and the other players we’ve got forward, the wingbacks, are stuck out wide. We end up with no runners into the box.

No goals scored from open play with this formation so far. I think he’ll stick with it for the time being because performances have improved but unless Phil changes the personnel in midfield, I can’t see us ever putting teams to the sword. We create a few half chances but you have to be ridiculously clinical to create that little and win regularly. It’s not sustainable.

Desperately lacking creativity down the middle. All the talk of us being better off without Rooney is funny considering we’re crying out for a playmaker in the middle. I’d like to see Rooney or Bird partner one of Shinnie/Knight.

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1 minute ago, Leicester Ram said:

Not convinced by this formation right now.

Knight/Shinnie are playing well defensively but not offering us enough going forward, Buchanan/Byrne get forward but go nowhere and the front three are basically left to play amongst themselves to no avail.

You see Jozwiak and Lawrence get the ball outside the box and not receive any help for too often. Knight/Shinnie are holding their positions despite the fact there’s three defenders behind them and the other players we’ve got forward, the wingbacks, are stuck out wide. We end up with no runners into the box.

No goals scored from open play with this formation so far. I think he’ll stick with it for the time being because performances have improved but unless Phil changes the personnel in midfield, I can’t see us ever putting teams to the sword. We create a few half chances but you have to be ridiculously clinical to create that little and win regularly. It’s not sustainable.

Desperately lacking creativity down the middle. All the talk of us being better off without Rooney is funny considering we’re crying out for a playmaker in the middle. I’d like to see Rooney or Bird partner one of Shinnie/Knight.

Absolutely agree with your post,spot on 👍

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9 minutes ago, Leicester Ram said:

Not convinced by this formation right now.

Knight/Shinnie are playing well defensively but not offering us enough going forward, Buchanan/Byrne get forward but go nowhere and the front three are basically left to play amongst themselves to no avail.

You see Jozwiak and Lawrence get the ball outside the box and not receive any help for too often. Knight/Shinnie are holding their positions despite the fact there’s three defenders behind them and the other players we’ve got forward, the wingbacks, are stuck out wide. We end up with no runners into the box.

No goals scored from open play with this formation so far. I think he’ll stick with it for the time being because performances have improved but unless Phil changes the personnel in midfield, I can’t see us ever putting teams to the sword. We create a few half chances but you have to be ridiculously clinical to create that little and win regularly. It’s not sustainable.

Desperately lacking creativity down the middle. All the talk of us being better off without Rooney is funny considering we’re crying out for a playmaker in the middle. I’d like to see Rooney or Bird partner one of Shinnie/Knight.

I largely agree. Whilst we lack a touch of creativity in the middle what I think the bigger issue is we lack control and the ability to keep the ball which in turns leads to not being able to keep pressure on when we attack.

Whilst you point out that Knight and Shinnie hold a bit too much going forward, I think it's bigger than that in that they don't move into space and offer for the ball enough full stop. It's really noticeable at times particular when it goes back to centre backs. In fairness Knight does offer at times and he had a couple lovely turns and drives but we needed a bit more. Frankly though Shinnie doesn't do it enough. 

What this means is we need to keep up the high work rate and energy up all game. In hindsight it's not super surprising we've conceded in the last few games well into the second half. We are asking a bit too much of ourselves.

Tonight we should have been able to play keep ball for large sections of the second half and completely wound the game down and made Cardiff chase it.

If we persist with 343 I think you are right in that we probably need to swap one of them out for most games. Personal preference would be for Bird/Knight in that case. Although personally I want us to shift to a 433.

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30 minutes ago, Leicester Ram said:

Not convinced by this formation right now.

Knight/Shinnie are playing well defensively but not offering us enough going forward, Buchanan/Byrne get forward but go nowhere and the front three are basically left to play amongst themselves to no avail.

You see Jozwiak and Lawrence get the ball outside the box and not receive any help for too often. Knight/Shinnie are holding their positions despite the fact there’s three defenders behind them and the other players we’ve got forward, the wingbacks, are stuck out wide. We end up with no runners into the box.

No goals scored from open play with this formation so far. I think he’ll stick with it for the time being because performances have improved but unless Phil changes the personnel in midfield, I can’t see us ever putting teams to the sword. We create a few half chances but you have to be ridiculously clinical to create that little and win regularly. It’s not sustainable.

Desperately lacking creativity down the middle. All the talk of us being better off without Rooney is funny considering we’re crying out for a playmaker in the middle. I’d like to see Rooney or Bird partner one of Shinnie/Knight.

If you take Knight or Shinnie out of midfield we’ll get over-ran again. Those 2 are holding it together and key at the moment with their energy and ability to pick up the loose balls.

Thought Shinnie’s passing is improving, threaded some lovely balls through tonight. Knight still can get forward to support despite playing deeper. 

Key is wing backs, and centre half stepping up. Wisdom/Clarke do it, but not great. When Bielik is back he can step out, allowing Knight to support more.

Edited by enachops
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5  at the back seems to be flavour of the month for a lot of teams in the top 2 divisions so I don't want to criticise too much. Personally I'd go 4-3-3 with Rooney at the base but that's because I have no confidence in our defence. I'd open the match up and hope we start converting some chances ala Keegan/Newcastle style.

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11 minutes ago, TomTom92 said:

5  at the back seems to be flavour of the month for a lot of teams in the top 2 divisions so I don't want to criticise too much. Personally I'd go 4-3-3 with Rooney at the base but that's because I have no confidence in our defence. I'd open the match up and hope we start converting some chances ala Keegan/Newcastle style.

If you have no confidence in our defence, then why switch to 4 with Rooney at the base? That’s even less stable. Who would the 2 centre halves be? Davies is our best defender at the minute. Put him in a 2 and we’ll get slaughtered. Rooney has zero defensive nous in his game - see the Blackburn game. 

Ideally id play with a 4. But I’m not convinced our centre halves are capable. 

Edited by enachops
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2 minutes ago, enachops said:

If you have no confidence in our defence, then why switch to 4 with Rooney at the base? That’s even less stable. Who would the 2 centre halves be? Davies is our best defender at the minute. Put him in a 2 and we’ll get slaughtered. Rooney has zero defensive nous in his game - see the Blackburn game. 

Ideally id play with a 4. But I’m not convinced our centre halves are capable. 

I'd rather go down fighting than conceding 1 goal a match anyway. We played 4 at the back last season and I get reminded that last year was a good season.

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If we played 3-4-3 under McClaren or Bielsa, I’d say go ahead. We’d probably look fantastic.

But Cocu has clearly adopted this formation for damage limitation purposes - to make us harder to beat and tighter defensively, and to an extent, it has worked.

If we were in the position of a Sheff Wed, a Wycombe or a Rotherham and expecting a long, hard slog of a season, sure, stick with it.

Two defeats out of five and four goals conceded compared to three defeats from three and eight goals conceded and you might say it’s been a success.

Not for me. For me, I want more for us. I want us to create chances. I want us to score goals. I want us to win games.

This formation helps us to stay in games, it isn’t helping us to win them.

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10 hours ago, Jourdan said:

But Cocu has clearly adopted this formation for damage limitation purposes - to make us harder to beat and tighter defensively, and to an extent, it has worked.

Yes, defence is the best form of attack goes the old cliche! 😄

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12 hours ago, Jourdan said:

If we played 3-4-3 under McClaren or Bielsa, I’d say go ahead. We’d probably look fantastic.

But Cocu has clearly adopted this formation for damage limitation purposes - to make us harder to beat and tighter defensively, and to an extent, it has worked.

If we were in the position of a Sheff Wed, a Wycombe or a Rotherham and expecting a long, hard slog of a season, sure, stick with it.

Two defeats out of five and four goals conceded compared to three defeats from three and eight goals conceded and you might say it’s been a success.

Not for me. For me, I want more for us. I want us to create chances. I want us to score goals. I want us to win games.

This formation helps us to stay in games, it isn’t helping us to win them.

The counter to this is that we are creating plenty of openings that for whatever reason we aren’t turning into shots, just yet. And when we do get shots away we aren’t quite clinical enough.

Take yesterday, you have the instance where Lawrence plays Waghorn through and he overruns the ball into the keeper rather than a simple square into Jozwiak for 2-0. Lawrence made marginally the wrong decision to pick out Waghorn rather than Jozwiak and Waghorn made very much the wrong decision. Then you have Lawrence cutting into the area from the angle with a good shooting opportunity but he squares it which is cut out. 

The problem isn’t the formation because we are creating really good openings. The problem is players lacking a bit of decisiveness and maybe confidence when we create those openings. I’m confident that will come and we just need a result and dare I say it a bit of luck in a game just to get a 2 goal lead and see it through. 

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2 hours ago, nottingram said:

The counter to this is that we are creating plenty of openings that for whatever reason we aren’t turning into shots, just yet. And when we do get shots away we aren’t quite clinical enough.

Take yesterday, you have the instance where Lawrence plays Waghorn through and he overruns the ball into the keeper rather than a simple square into Jozwiak for 2-0. Lawrence made marginally the wrong decision to pick out Waghorn rather than Jozwiak and Waghorn made very much the wrong decision. Then you have Lawrence cutting into the area from the angle with a good shooting opportunity but he squares it which is cut out. 

The problem isn’t the formation because we are creating really good openings. The problem is players lacking a bit of decisiveness and maybe confidence when we create those openings. I’m confident that will come and we just need a result and dare I say it a bit of luck in a game just to get a 2 goal lead and see it through. 

Maybe. Let’s hope you are right.

For me, I just think the formation is limiting us. It has helped us defensively, but at what cost?

Against Watford, we had three good chances with Holmes in the first half, Lawrence’s lovely run and tame shot when he came on, and Rooney’s one on one with the keeper.

Against Norwich, I don’t remember any decent chances apart from Whittaker’s run and shot from distance.

Against Forest, we had Shinnie’s two chances and the disallowed goal.

Against Huddersfield, Clarke hit the post and Jozwiak flashed a shot wide.

Some teams create 2-3 good openings in a 15-20 minute spell. We are creating that many chances in whole games.

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