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Tactics Vertical Tiki - Taka [4-1-2-3]


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Being a Barcelona fan & Cruyff disciple  i have always admired possession based football. For me, the objective is not to record match results where I win 8-0 and have 50 shots per game or something like that. Instead, the main objective is to implement the characteristics of the tiki-taka playing style with its movements and positional play as close to reality as possible. Instead of posting about Tiki-Taka that was made famous by dazzling Barca side led by Pep i'm posting about vertical Tiki-Taka based on another tactician Maurizio Sarri.

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"Vertical tiki taka is a high pressing, possession based style of play. The aim is to create vertical incisive passes, rather than the slower sideways passing of Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona."

 

This tactic is for those who :

1) Prefers extreme possession (above 60%) to control the match and thereby dominate any opposition.

2) feels more comfortable when the ball is in the opposite half rather than countering from deep.

3) sees pressing as a tool to control the opposition and hereby force mistakes.

4) Sees the benefits of utilizing a balanced system which is as defensively solid as attacking fluid in order to concede fewer goals and create more distinct goalscoring opportunities.

5) Enjoys expansive football with lots of movements (overloads and underloads) that breaks down any opponents, interchange in passing, and quick one-two’s which results in beautiful goals leading from clever through balls.

SETUP 

Components to discuss about:

1) Shape: 

Since this is vertical tiki-taka based system i have chosen it to be narrow. Why ?? To create cohesive central defensive block and provide passing option to implement short passing system. Narrow formation means its hard to break down for opposition and having passing option for quickly transitioning from defense to attack. To encourage playing out from back we have a sweeper GK with sort pass distribution instruction. These players are positioned in such a way that it forms passing triangle in each zones on the pitch.

barcelona-tiki-taka-tactics-2-3-2-3-passing-combination-map.thumb.png.70d2c6c187ce23d728dc4b8617f00a45.png

Screenshot_20210114-203913.thumb.jpg.feff07aad1e0faee60d4923a0b8e5f4a.jpg

 

2) Defense:

Pressing the opposition With the motto to regain possession as soon as possible defensive line is quite high & to compliment the ball retention it's best to have ball playing defender. Two Ball playing defender along with two wingbacks, who provide width to already narrow formation & bombards forward to make overlapping runs to create overload while attacking, and high line leave way too much space between the defensive line and GK to be exploited a quick & agile defenders are required.

1901178695_barcelona-tiki-taka-central-defender-in-possession(1).jpg.29fc86684078408e4a9831df3fdc398b.jpg

Upfront in defensive line is an Anchor man acting as shield to defense as well as a pivot that links defense and attack. Mainly assigned with man marking role to preventing the opposition midfielder venturing in our half. As an anchor he will drop in the hole present between both the defender while wingbacks attack. When defending the shape acquire 5 at back.

Screenshot_20210114-203916.thumb.jpg.e439147e3e27c4a91a08f95530a98ad7.jpg

3) Midfield & Attack :

Paired with Anchor man in midfielder is a combination of either two advance playmaker or a advance playmaker and roaming playmaker who ventures up the field to control the tempo and play the defense splitting pass. To compensate the lack of defensive midfielder who drop back to form back 3, Deep lying forward drop back to link up the play between the two playmakers and the inside forwarrds. Since its vertical Tiki-Taka the passing focus is center to exploit the half space.

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Screenshot_20210114-203919.thumb.jpg.5eafdf9b1b29a765fa812e8c234f6b4d.jpg

 

Results 

Screenshot_20210115-010500.thumb.jpg.017963d4ef57525b3d6d98eb764c7d4e.jpgScreenshot_20210115-010540.thumb.jpg.951fa424a1b38427a6a521c1ab4b4226.jpgScreenshot_20210115-010540.thumb.jpg.951fa424a1b38427a6a521c1ab4b4226.jpgScreenshot_20210115-010557.thumb.jpg.c11855b86c1662fb302c72e21798e1c6.jpgScreenshot_20210115-010635.thumb.jpg.0087bef8d189a0125b59b5fb63e3d4c0.jpgScreenshot_20210115-010640.thumb.jpg.4dd3556aca2e0bd0a8fa63be455d3f31.jpg

 

TEAM STATS

1) L E A U G E   T A B L E

Screenshot_20210115-010342.thumb.jpg.ca1291d4ee604521643736a346035467.jpg

 HOMEScreenshot_20210115-010348.thumb.jpg.7e431d364008b0da840f960bbc9088d8.jpg

AWAY

Screenshot_20210115-010353.thumb.jpg.b5c13ea9c86ad943cfb1ad5d724acff5.jpg

Zero Red Cards & No. of Yellow Cards accumulated over a campaignScreenshot_20210115-010449.thumb.jpg.17f7720f143bce70aa6be7dd3531e1ae.jpg

Clean SheetsScreenshot_20210115-010440.thumb.jpg.c35fa977e359b5f36dd8b89ba1bd25c2.jpg

2) P L A Y E R     S T A T S

Screenshot_20210115-010657.thumb.jpg.53b930a6f92f25bea95f5a4e0ec40a51.jpg

Screenshot_20210115-010716.thumb.jpg.9f4268fd0840d1bb3bb0b36b9306a3a7.jpg

3) T R A N S F E R

No transfers were made except one of Gabriel Barbosa in winter transfer window. I secured few loans to provide backup in case of injury as my squad was thin and finance was in very poor state.

4) M A N A G E R

Polish_20210115_011139324.thumb.jpg.0d901eea3cd65e210a620ea754ab4a8d.jpg

I can’t promise you titles or high score lines, as this will depend on your team, the opponent and basically how you analyze the match tactically both pre- and in-match, and how you decide to conquer the opponent’s weaknesses

 

PS: Spare me for my poor english and this mess(of uneven font size) that i have created, which i couldn't fix maybe coz its hard to do all these things on mobile.

 

 

Edited by Nick11
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Bundesliga Test

This tactic has worked quite well in Bundesliga albeit some tweaking was done. Original tactic worked well but struggled to make impact as the season progressed. Irrespective of changes that i made the core idea and functioning remains same.

Tweak 1:

I had to push the anchor man up in the midfield as a roaming playmaker and other two  midfielder were reverted back to proper central midfielder role to provide much needed defensive stability to the team. Rest of the formation remain same. 

Tweak 2:

I had to change the attacking mentality to controlled  or to balanced mentality paired with different tempo & the width remain same.

(Mentality,Tempo & Creativity combo) 👇

• Controlled + slow/normal + Expressive

• Balanced + Fast + Expressive

Screenshot_20210115-154217.thumb.jpg.c4eae8a6c55f2ca01c81a7d4d6b8c13d.jpg

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Tweak 3:

Although i did it sparingly but here it is👇

Not playing through ball. After watching the game in slow+ detailed mode i figured out that my team was wasting possession by playing through balls even when not required ( Against Park The Bus team) but against attacking or Controlled mentality opposition playing through balls unlocked opposition defense alot.

 

Results

1) LEAUGE TABLE 

Screenshot_20210115-154127.thumb.jpg.e6e89ce21b066134e5d7fc7be17d5a9d.jpg

2) FIXTURE 

Screenshot_20210115-154058.thumb.jpg.7fb29952bf5f89a42de84eca095a5909.jpg

Screenshot_20210115-154105.thumb.jpg.ed9390c90b29092c0fd4c9ac18a04a28.jpg

Screenshot_20210115-154116.thumb.jpg.765a3d01742015bf48e48bebc78e447a.jpg

Screenshot_20210115-154121.thumb.jpg.6bdfc16a16f37de76ec0538c14218a63.jpg

 

3) PLAYER STATS

Screenshot_20210115-154204.thumb.jpg.fdfc82814dce4337959d042334c58c23.jpg

Screenshot_20210115-154309.thumb.jpg.1303cc87977fc30d22351aa5457a46c0.jpg

 

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What a great write up - thank you!

I really like having the anchor man role or even a deep lying playmaker in that area, but have found it really hard to make work and also ended up making them the central CM.

The pushed up wing backs obviously work for you, but it would leave me paranoid about the counter.

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4 hours ago, SK15Kev said:

What a great write up - thank you!

I really like having the anchor man role or even a deep lying playmaker in that area, but have found it really hard to make work and also ended up making them the central CM.

The pushed up wing backs obviously work for you, but it would leave me paranoid about the counter.

Thanks mate. 

I use anchor man only because he doesn't move up rather drop back b/w two center backs more like a half back. DLP has worked for me only when i play him in midfield trio with BWM & AP/RP, Where DLP operate behind BWM & AP.

Pushed up WB is leaves defense vulnerable but my motto is to outscore my opponent & hyper-pressing works pretty well in this version. My opponent barely had much possession. Plus having pacy BPD and Anchor man almost nullify opposition attack.

Now i need to use  original tactics & tweaked tactics in EPL and La Liga to check whether it works or not.

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You had me at Hello ;)!!!

what a great write-up. This stands to be one of the most explained tactic in this forum - close to ever :)!

thank you for sharing! 

Off topic you could one Day try an replicate the Danish Dinamite tactic from 1992 where Ricardo the coach said. " we play with long balls". Its was based on luck, long balls, drunk danes and more luck :)!

best regards Anders

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To be honest, I was impressed by the way you introduced the tactic : very detailed and very painstaking. Then I decided to try the tactic with strong(Man. City) and weak (Türkgücü München)teams . Realized that the higher the creativity of playmakers makes tactic more effective. Good job 

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12 hours ago, AndersJ said:

You had me at Hello ;)!!!

what a great write-up. This stands to be one of the most explained tactic in this forum - close to ever :)!

thank you for sharing! 

Off topic you could one Day try an replicate the Danish Dinamite tactic from 1992 where Ricardo the coach said. " we play with long balls". Its was based on luck, long balls, drunk danes and more luck :)!

best regards Anders

Thanks mate.

Can you shed some light on tactics/formation that was used in  Danish Dinamite team, searched about it but i could only find the story part not the tactical aspect. 

 

5 hours ago, panoleyon said:

To be honest, I was impressed by the way you introduced the tactic : very detailed and very painstaking. Then I decided to try the tactic with strong(Man. City) and weak (Türkgücü München)teams . Realized that the higher the creativity of playmakers makes tactic more effective. Good job 

😁

Did it work for you?? Im yet to test it in EPL & other leagues.

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9 hours ago, Nick11 said:

Thanks mate.

Can you shed some light on tactics/formation that was used in  Danish Dinamite team, searched about it but i could only find the story part not the tactical aspect. 

 

😁

Did it work for you?? Im yet to test it in EPL & other leagues.

Works well when your playmakers have high creativity . Otherwise you have trouble scoring goals because of the slow tempo . For example it worked well with Man City but with Türkgücü ( Germany 3rd league team ) I couldn't be successful 😁

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Seems like a really nice tactic.

I always train my player with the role and position I want them to play but never know what attribute I should train. Do you have any tips ?

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28 minutes ago, Sauce Onctueuse said:

Seems like a really nice tactic.

I always train my player with the role and position I want them to play but never know what attribute I should train. Do you have any tips ?

Go to settings menu & change this 👇

IMG_20210122_183527.thumb.jpg.163c076ca4b1779cb8fbf8ed4e5ef509.jpg

You can thus see the attributes for a trained role, now go to training and focus on any of these weak attributes & later on on secondary attributes.

 

Apart from attributes check out for complimentary player traits. They're really helpful.

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58 minutes ago, Nick11 said:

Go to settings menu & change this 👇

IMG_20210122_183527.thumb.jpg.163c076ca4b1779cb8fbf8ed4e5ef509.jpg

You can thus see the attributes for a trained role, now go to training and focus on any of these weak attributes & later on on secondary attributes.

 

Apart from attributes check out for complimentary player traits. They're really helpful.

Thank you very much

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I really like the write up here, it drew me in to try it... I haven't used it exactly as you describe though, I have kind of merged it with another tactic I was trying to get to work (I wanted 2 RPs). It works pretty well so I thought I would share:792248647_Screenshot_20210130-094202_FM21Mobile.thumb.jpg.a06f4a27da050728de6b0544762f6fd6.jpg

Screenshot_20210130-093709_FM21 Mobile.jpg

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