England: A time for change
By John Brandon.
After two deeply disappointing displays so far, it is time for change. It is now time for Fabio Capello to ditch the rigid, boring 4 – 4 – 2 and opt for the system that all the players are comfortable with. It is time to play a system that all the top sides like Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool play.
It is time to play a system that will get the best out of England’s world class players such as Lampard, Gerrard, Ashley Cole, Joe Cole and of course the talisman Wayne Rooney. The formation is 4 – 2 – 3 – 1. This formation encourages positive movement from all players. There is more freedom with this system. The two holding midfielders allow the 4 attacking players to move with absolute freedom and drift in to areas that are difficult for defenders to pick up. The system also allows both full backs a free licence to join in the attack. This is a key tactic if any team are to win a world cup.
The formation that England have played in all of their games under Fabio Capello is too easy to play against. This has been apparent so far in this World Cup with both USA and Algeria finding it easy to play against. The opposition teams are encouraging the defenders to look long for the big target man and are then smothering the flick on or crowding out Wayne Rooney when he receives the ball from the target man. This plan will be employed by Slovenia on Wednesday and that is why change is needed.
The flexible formation 4 – 2 – 3 – 1 keeps the opposition guessing. Teams who play this formation can attack in all different directions. Attacks can happen down the left, down the right, over the top or play through the middle, all of this can only be positive for England.
As the England squad was announced people wondered why Fabio Capello was going to take Michael Carrick to the world cup. Now it seems a genius decision from the Italian maestro as Michael Carrick would fit this system superbly as the second holding midfielder along with Gareth Barry. Michael Carrick plays in this position for his club side Manchester United, so Capello wouldn’t have to spend three days coaching Carrick on how to play this position.
The three players with a licence to roam and join attacks from all directions would be Steven Gerrard, Joe Cole and Frank Lampard. Chelsea and Liverpool both play this system, so again no coaching would be needed by Capello. There would just be a little tinkering needed for when England are trying to win the ball back, high up the pitch. Something Capello is extremely fond of.
Playing in the position of lone striker would be Wayne Rooney. He has mastered this position for Manchester United. Playing as the lone striker is a position which he has scored over 30 goals against all opposition home and abroad this season. The position brings out the best in him and makes him happy. A happy confident Wayne Rooney would equal a happy and confident England.
It is apparent that confidence is low, extremely low and changing from the rigid 4 – 4 – 2 in to the flexible 4 – 2 – 3 – 1 formation and giving the England players freedom and showing that he trusts them as individuals means that a positive result against Slovenia is more likely.