Coaching a team who are about to step up into 9v9? In part five of this study of shapes and tactics for this team size, DAVE CLARKE looks at 3-2-1-2… MORE
With more teams playing 9v9 at U11 and U12, Dave Clarke takes a look at the formations your side could play for this team size. This is the 1-3-1-2-1 formation.
PROS: A very strong formation with diamonds from back to front, it is solid in the middle and excellent on the counterattack. It also offers plenty of support from midfield to attack
CONS: It relies heavily on the covering defender and if players are not funnelling back quickly enough the team could be caught out. The covering defender has whole of backline to cover and therefore must be a quick player.
The defence forms a diamond in front of the goalkeeper with a solid centre. When organised the defence presents a compact centre that will only be broken down by good wing play. When disorganised and recovering to combat the counterattack it relies heavily on the sweeper at the back to read the attacking move.
The midfield forms a diamond with the attacker and is very compact when under attack, but at risk from tricky wingers, so care must be taken not to be too narrow in defence. In attack, the midfield is great for sweeping moves with players running from all angles to support, which makes it a difficult formation to defend against.
The single player in attack is only a problem when quick counterattacks are wanted. The formation relies on the lone attacker to hold up the ball and wait for the supporting players. This has the potential to be a very potent attack with such strong midfield support.
This formation is great for player awareness, as it needs players to move within the two diamond shapes for width and penetration. The diamond idea helps them to keep their positions and recover to the right areas. It also helps the attacker to see he is the top of the diamond and shows him that he must try to keep his position when the team is under attack
It is vital that players switch through all the different positions so they have a clear idea of what players have to do in other positions, making it more likely they will support in attack and defence.