Sunday, 11 May 2008

Southampton. Fluent tactical approach matters!

Today I have some good news about my Southampton. As it was decided in previous story message - my team should operate more defensively if we want to avoid relegation from Premier League. And, of course, I had real motivation for creation of defensive tactics because my team was on the last position when 24 matches had already been played.

Actually, I hadn't created new tactics from the very beginning. I just changed formation of my current attacking one. You can compare both formations:

4-3-3 Attacking                             4-1-4-1 Defensive 

4-3-3 Attacking , Southampton For 4-1-4-1 tactics I have been using Normal mentality without Counter Attacks   

So I just moved MLC and MRC from 4-3-3 tactics into positions of clear attacking wingers: ML and MR. And my 2 forwards (FLC, FRC) were moved  into MLC and MRC positions. 

For 4-1-4-1 tactics I have been using Normal mentality without Counter Attacks. Though sometimes playing against strong football clubs like Manchester United I was turning on counter attacks and setting more defensive mentality.

As a result I've got the following row of successful games:

As a result I've got the following row of successful games

By the way, not all matches were played with new 4-1-4-1 tactics. I decided to setup tactics for every match more fluently. The main rule of my new fluent tactical approach is: If Southampton plays at home with opponent which power is less or equal to power of my team, then 4-3-3 formation is preferred. Otherwise, 4-1-4-1 formation is chosen.

And, for sure, other settings like Tempo, Mentality, Counter Attacks, etc. can be changed depending on separate match and style of opponent team (this is a common thing, I suppose).

So using the aforementioned rule I played home matches with Birmingham, Fulham, Portsmouth, Derby with 4-3-3 formation. Other matches in the screen shot were played using 4-1-4-1 formation.

Consequently you can see very marked improvement of Southampton's position in the league standing:

Consequently you can see very marked improvement of Southampton's position in the league standing

We are 17th! And having 7 points away from relegation zone. Seems like some kind of great disaster should happen if Southampton doesn't stay in the Premier League! By now I'm starting to think over the prospects of the next season... Waiting it with impatience!

And the last but not least... I want to praise again great striker - Marius Niculae. Most likely you had read about him in the previous posts of my Southampton story. This time I will only give you screen with his current form during the last matches:

Current form of Marius Niculae during the last matches

What I can say, he scores very often!!! And he does this in Premier League playing against very tough teams. And the most important: Niculae scores many goals playing for my Southampton that is one of the weakest PL teams currently! Imagine how he would perform if he is Chelsea or Liverpool player when world class midfielders would give him a lot of dangerous passes.

Author: Vitaliy

Playing Football Manager since 1996. Blogging about it since 2007.