DEBATE: 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 for Chelsea?

I have taken some stick on my blog over the past day or so because I have changed my opinion. As we all know, Chelsea have played with the t...

I have taken some stick on my blog over the past day or so because I have changed my opinion. As we all know, Chelsea have played with the tried and trusted 4-3-3 formation ever since Jose Mourinho was manager in 2004. That formation has brought Chelsea major successes as we know.

In recent seasons however, it seems that the opposition had worked out how to defend against the 4-3-3 formation we were using and Chelsea found it very difficult to break down. Time and time again we would all sit and moan about the lack of creativity in the side because it became a real problem.

Then at Old Trafford last season AVB made a drastic change to our formation, adopted the 4-2-3-1 formation and Chelsea looked like a completely different side. We dominated United (although we were losing and chasing the game) and created plenty of chances. I posted about it at the time that this is the way forward for the future. AVB never played the formation again and we all know what happened to him!

When RDM took over he immediately adopted the 4-2-3-1 formation and lead us to a historic double!.

Now this season with all the attacking players we have signed with the 4-2-3-1 formation in mind, we haven't been the most solid at the back have we?

Paul Merson on SkySports Soccer Saturday has spoken before the season started about Chelsea's formation and the players we have signed and has said that he was "worried" for Chelsea as they leave themselves exposed at the back. At the time I thought "he doesn't know what he is talking about" but the other night in Monaco, Atletico Madrid gave us a masterclass on doing exactly that.

I posted a breakdown of what I personally think were the reasons that Atletico Madrid beat us and I believe that we are very weak down the wide areas of the pitch. Atletico counter attacked us down our right hand side the whole game and it's a major concern for me.

So as a result, I am looking back at the 4-3-3 and Yes, even after I said the formation was dead. The reason, cover down each side of the pitch!

In the 4-3-3 formation, we have cover down each side through our defence, midfield and into the forward line. In the 4-2-3-1 formation we leave ourselves exposed out wide.

In the tactical breakdown I posted yesterday, Chelsea at times had six or seven players pushing forward and once we had lost possession of the ball, Atletico had men over on the counter.

I just feel as though there is room for debate here and when I say debate I mean talking sense here and not comparing positions and the formations to what happens on Football Manager!

Oh and before this particular person comes on here to big up FM, I just want to point out that I have been playing FM since it's creation back in the day when it was called Championship Manager. You have to realise that this is a programme that runs as a game. It cannot be compared to reality even though it's the closest thing to it.

I took some stick from this individual on my post yesterday and didn't expect anything less. The thing is, I try and look at the bigger picture and post what I believe are the reasons we were ripped apart by Atletico. I stand by my argument.

I just feel that unless we can sort out our defensive positioning in wide areas, when we come up against the likes of Man City, United and the Arsenal, they could rip us to pieces again.

Maybe now we have the creative, flair players we have the option to go back to the 4-3-3 formation as it seems more of a solid option for me?

What do you people think. 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1?


Post a Comment

  1. I think we'd have to switch between both depending on the opposition. Plus I think Ivanovic just had a bad night at Monaco. That's why there is any thought of changing formations. Let's stick to 4231 still. If it fails again,we go 433.

  2. I Particularly is a fan of the 4-3-3! It gives the team balance ! This is the formation Mikel prefers , with two guys infront of him, he is able to get the ball, the release to the two AMFs..hence, shielding our CBs.. And plus our investment in attacking flair upfront , the 4-3-3 won't do bad!




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