Posted on November 12th, 2018
Football has never changed, it’s always been eleven against eleven on a similar-sized pitch with exactly the same objective: to score goals.
Yet somehow, every generation seems to want to reinvent the wheel, find new and impressive ways of lining up on the pitch and defeating the opposition. Teams played with a sweeper in the eighties, wingers used to be tradition and yet ‘wingless wonders’ won the World Cup.
Then there’s the anti-tactics of teams such as Stoke City, finding ways to win by not playing football. Some games are like chess matches, intricate and well-planned with little quarter taken or given.
Nowadays having two up front is thought to be expressive, but in the early part of the 20th century, there used to be more forwards on the pitch than any other player at one point. 2-2-6 wasn’t an unknown approach and, for many, it worked.
A tactical approach can make betting rather unpredictable, because form can go out of the window if a team sets up a certain way and it can lead to easy wins when placing your weekend bets. It is always advisable to check out available advice on multiples and odds and probability before betting on big events involving sides with a master tactician at the helm.
In the Championship this season, one such man is applying a tried and tested method to get a once-proud team back into the top flight. Marcelo Bielsa is a world-renowned coach, having managed both Chile and Argentina, as well as a host of Europe’s top clubs.
He’s using a 4-1-4-1 formation at Elland Road, a rather attacking line up that uses two attacking midfielders who can operate on the overlap or drop back to help out the holding midfielder. His approach to defending, a flat back four, is as old as anyone reading this, but going forward his formation relies on hard work.
Now, when his side come up against Tony Pulis and Boro later in the season, any form will go out of the window. Leeds will look to press the ball and impress a high energy approach, whilst Middlesbrough look to sit back, soaking up the pressure and hitting a side on the break. The two drew 0-0 earlier in the season in a classic situation of two incompatible approaches colliding and bringing obvious outcomes.
There are big wins to be found by taking the right advice, though. Earlier this season Portsmouth were top of League One and seemingly winning games for fun, but they use a 4-2-3-1- formation, putting not conceding over and above attacking. Away from Fratton Park that is fine, but at home, sides are meant to come out and attack.
That gave lowly Gillingham an edge because they knew not to over-commit themselves going forward, and to be patient. The pressure was then on the home side and Gillingham were able to win the game, despite their contrasting positions. Portsmouth panicked at halftime, bringing off two players and upsetting their rhythm.
There’s as much emphasis put on tactics as anything but if you know your stuff and take the right advice from the right places, you can use them to your advantage when placing a bet this weekend.