Football Tactics For Beginners:Catenaccio

 Some people are etched in our collective minds, as are some legends and indeed, perceptions about such words and legends. When it comes to football,...
Ritesh Gogineni
Editor/Founder of The False 9.

Latest Posts

Do Premier League Players Have a Say in Their Transfers?

Americans know that in sports, there is a widespread culture where players don’t have a final say in their destinies, with exceedingly rare exceptions.However,...

The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it’s impact on Football

Not in Kansas AnymoreA century ago, amidst the poultry and pig farms in a small corner of Kansas, a local doctor became inundated...

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Big Sam’s tactics against Liverpool show the template to stifle Klopp’s side

Two complete opposites came up in the congested Christmas fixture list, as Liverpool in great form sitting at the top of the table look...

The Meteoric Rise of RB Leipzig: From Tier Five Football to the Champions League

The best football clubs in the world usually have a storied history, years of success, and generations of fans. However, one of the best...

4 players Man United can target in January transfer window to challenge for the title

Manchester United after an up and down start to the season find themselves 5 points behind Liverpool with a game in hand. After being...

The Return of Strike Partnerships in the Premier League? Part 1

No matter the make-up, the notion of a strike partnership – two out-and-out attackers, often with very different strengths and calling cards, working seamlessly...

Football Books

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Foul- The Beautiful Game, An Ugly Truth [Book Excerpt]

The clip-clop of football boot studs on concrete echoed through the tunnel over the hum of distant crowd noise. A drenched team of players...

Best Football Analytics Books

We have compiled a list of the best football analytics books for the casual football fan. Football analytics and data science/machine learning in general...

The Best Football Books of 2019

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2020, we have compiled a list of the best...

The Best Football Books of 2018

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2019, we have compiled a list of the best...

Do Chelsea need to mix it up at home?

As the weeks tick by and the business end of the season approaches, it’s becoming clear to a lot of fans that Frank Lampard potentially needs to tinker with his formation if Chelsea are to finish the season strongly and secure a top-four spot.

The side from West London was as low as 1/2 at the start of February to secure a top-four place, but ever since then, they’ve drifted to around Evens at the time of writing. A pretty good price if you fancy them to finish the season well. There are plenty of free bet offers online if you want to back them but don’t really want to use your own money. Make sure you check those out. They do have some favourable fixtures minus one or two, so their current odds look tempting.

How do Chelsea stop the rot?

It looks like the rot is their home form. It’s not been the best recently. In fact, they’ve not lost this many home games in a season since the 1994-95 season. An incredible stat indeed. To highlight their dismal home form even further, Chelsea have lost as many games at home in the Premier League this season than they did between February 2004 and November 2010. It doesn’t make for great reading, does it?

Something needs to change. The formation needs to change. It is as simple as that. The trusted 4-3-3 at home doesn’t seem to be working against most sides. A 1-0 defeat at home to West Ham. A 1-0 loss to Bournemouth. A 2-0 loss against Southampton. Another 2-0 loss against Manchester United. You don’t see those kinds of results under Roman Abramovich’s reign. Well, you do now.

4-3-3 to 4-1-3-1?

Let’s take the Manchester United defeat as an example. Their seventh home defeat of the season in all competitions. They played their usual home formation of 4-3-3:

GK – Caballero

RB – James

CB – Christensen

CB – Rudiger

LB – Azpilicueta

CM – Kante

CM – Jorginho

CM – Kovacic

RW – Pedro

LW – Willian

CF – Batshuayi

Ok, so they were missing the goal threat of Tammy Abraham, but it’s not just this game where the formation hasn’t worked. Pedro and Willian are arguably better in the number 10 role just behind the striker. And do they need three holding midfielders? Kante and Jorginho are good enough to protect their defenders. It all looks a bit too defensive. Especially at home when Chelsea should always be on the front foot.

4-2-3-1 should be the alteration. Stick to four at the back, that’s fine. Have two holding midfielders. Kante is so good that he’s two players on his own anyway. That then leaves Lampard with a choice of three a bit further forward. Hudson-Odoi could be deployed on one of the wings with his pace. Pulisic is arguably the best player on the other wing. Willian and Pedro are excellent, there’s no argument there, but Pulisic looks better suited out wide in comparison. Mason Mount’s had a high season so far, as many predicted, and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t get the nod in the number 10 role behind Tammy Abraham. Rotate Mount with Willian. Problem Solved? Well, it’s not as easy as that, but Lampard needs to mix it up and experiment a bit more. The fans want excitement at home.

How will Ziyech fit in the team?

The Moroccan Messi, Hakim Ziyech, will join Chelsea from Ajax in the summer for around £33m. The 26-year-old scored an impressive 21 goals and notched 24 assists in all competitions for Ajax last season, so Chelsea knows they’re getting a player who can score and create goals consistently. He will bring flair and excitement to Chelsea’s forward line, but where will he fit in in the team?

On the right is the answer. That’s where he’s most effective, so if Lampard sticks to his 4-3-3 formation, he’ll be battling it out with the likes of Willian, Pedro, Hudson-Odoi and Pulisic for a starting place. And at over £30m, don’t expect him to warm the bench much.

With Willian yet to sign a new contract, the personnel could all change at the end of the season at Chelsea. It remains to be seen how this season will pan out for the Blues, but a shift in formation should seriously be under consideration by Frank Lampard. You can only stick to a formation and lose for so long before the fans start to turn against you. If the formation changes sooner rather than later, Chelsea could well save their season and finish in the top four. Will it happen? Watch this space.

 

Related

How Chelsea will lineup with Ziyech & Werner next year: Lampard’s thrilling 4-3-3 formation

Chelsea have already wrapped up the signings of Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner who will join the squad for next season and reports have...

Mason Mount: Chelsea’s Golden Boy

When Frank Lampard was appointed, Derby County fans everywhere collectively held their breath in the hope of whom his widely spoken about “contacts” might...

The Jorginho Effect

We are obsessed in England with formations and personnel. Before every match we see graphics of players detailing exactly how they will line up...

Chelsea 3:2 Arsenal- Tactical Analysis

Match summary:An incredibly open match – Chelsea’s long passes exposed the space behind Arsenal’s backline, but Arsenal managed a comeback from 2-0 down through...

The different interpretations of the 3 at the back formation by Conte, Wenger, Pochettino & Guardiola

Antonio Conte came to the Premier League in rather quiet fashion. The arrivals of Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola were the talk of the...

Filling the Gaps: The Importance of Defensive Midfielders

Defending, or a complete lack of, has been addressed seemingly non-stop for the last couple of weeks. But yet again we have had a...

How Pep Guardiola tactically outclassed Antonio Conte

When Manchester City met Chelsea at Stamford bridge in the last round of premier league games, it seemed like this could be the game...

Chelsea 0:1 Manchester City-Tactical Analysis

Those who tuned in to Saturday’s match at Stamford Bridge between the reigning league champions and a slick, flourishing City team were always expecting...

How to beat Antonio Conte’s 3-4-3 formation at Chelsea?

Antonio Conte's switch to the 3-4-3 formation in September last year was a key turning point in Chelsea's title run. Chelsea went on a...

Latest Posts

Do Premier League Players Have a Say in Their Transfers?

Americans know that in sports, there is a widespread culture where players don’t have a final say in their destinies, with exceedingly rare exceptions.However,...

The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it’s impact on Football

Not in Kansas AnymoreA century ago, amidst the poultry and pig farms in a small corner of Kansas, a local doctor became inundated...

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Big Sam’s tactics against Liverpool show the template to stifle Klopp’s side

Two complete opposites came up in the congested Christmas fixture list, as Liverpool in great form sitting at the top of the table look...

Don't Miss

Cruyffism through Spain

Spain has developed a unique commitment to technical football which has put them in good stead to make the past decade a period of Spanish dominance. The story to this dominance begin decades before hand when Cruyff decided that Barcelona would be the club he would next manage after his time at Ajax was over. He would create a cohesive identity for the club which kept the vision while finding success. This vision began with a number of manager who came before Cruyff but after Cruyff left, there would be many managers in Spain who would use his methods to discovery their own success.

Remembering Arthur Wharton: The First Black Professional Footballer

In an interview from 1888, Arthur Wharton recalled overhearing a conversation between two fellow track competitors some years before. “Who’s he,” one rhetorically asked,...

Hungary – The Golden Team that never quite made it.

When you look back at the history of past World Cup winners and European Championship winners the usual names by in large stand out....

FC Start and The Death Match

“Without belittling the courage with which men have died, we must not forget those acts of courage with which men have lived.” – John...

The Football match which started a war

Plenty of football stadiums have statues standing outside of them. There's strange one here and there (Michael Jackson formerly outside Craven Cottage springs to...

Football History

Cruyffism through Spain

Spain has developed a unique commitment to technical football which has put them in good stead to make the past decade a period of Spanish dominance. The story to this dominance begin decades before hand when Cruyff decided that Barcelona would be the club he would next manage after his time at Ajax was over. He would create a cohesive identity for the club which kept the vision while finding success. This vision began with a number of manager who came before Cruyff but after Cruyff left, there would be many managers in Spain who would use his methods to discovery their own success.

Súper Dépor! The rise and fall of Deportivo La Coruña

At the StartWith the exception of a 2nd place finish to Helenio Herrera’s Atlético Madrid in 1948/49, Deportivo La Coruña have historically plied their...

When Sir Alex Ferguson Lost by 9 Goals in back to back matches

I'm shattered, I can't believe it. It was our worst ever day. It's the worst in my history, ever. Even as a player I...

A brief history of the footballing aesthetic (and its gradual death)

The death of football at its most beautiful peak, is nigh ‘Football is the beautiful game.’ A statement we have heard since childhood. Words which...

Football And Alcohol

“When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.”Football and booze go a long long way back, in...