Should our defensive line be dropped back?

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Tue Sep 04, 2012 5:13 am

@The Franchise wrote:Understood JD. To me though, its a tactic, one as fundemental as playing a lone pivot in Busquets. There are other ways to go, but I feel its the best one. We get to overload the midfield and aslong as the movement from the front is there, 2 fullbacks ready to make overlaps then I will always create goal chances.

Perhaps it now is but in 2008-09 we didn't play that tactic but we still played our style. I would say we played our style then even more than we are doing now. So in future it may just be worth a thought but not much more than that because like I said changing that causes it's own set of complications.


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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by The Franchise on Tue Sep 04, 2012 12:48 pm

But Messi is a different player now than he was then. He ran off the ball more, he didnt dominate it...so it was simple enough to keep him on the right wing.

Putting him on the right wing now would never work and what other position could he possibly play? Like a 10 with another striker in front of him? I dont think thats a good idea, like with Ibra, another person directly in front of Messi limited his room to operate more than it helps. Also, which striker could we possibly get that would be worth it and good enough?

As you touched on, it brings another set of complications...some many times bigger than whatever issue there is now. Really I dont see any issue now to be honest.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Tue Sep 04, 2012 1:55 pm

@The Franchise wrote:But Messi is a different player now than he was then. He ran off the ball more, he didnt dominate it...so it was simple enough to keep him on the right wing.

Putting him on the right wing now would never work and what other position could he possibly play? Like a 10 with another striker in front of him? I dont think thats a good idea, like with Ibra, another person directly in front of Messi limited his room to operate more than it helps. Also, which striker could we possibly get that would be worth it and good enough?

As you touched on, it brings another set of complications...some many times bigger than whatever issue there is now. Really I dont see any issue now to be honest.


Indeed dani that pretty much sums up this whole matter. At the moment we have to stick to this and hope that it works as well as before.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by The Franchise on Tue Sep 04, 2012 3:21 pm

2 questions JD.

If somehow we changed it and started using a striker with Messi as a number 10, which players would you be intrested in using/buying?

Alex said Alexis, would you try that out or do you have other players in mind?

Secondly, with that center striker, how would you line us up? Take out a midfielder and play someone else on the flank? Be lobsided and have Dani Alves charge up the flank? Something else?
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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Tue Sep 04, 2012 6:24 pm

@The Franchise wrote:2 questions JD.

If somehow we changed it and started using a striker with Messi as a number 10, which players would you be intrested in using/buying?

Alex said Alexis, would you try that out or do you have other players in mind?

Secondly, with that center striker, how would you line us up? Take out a midfielder and play someone else on the flank? Be lobsided and have Dani Alves charge up the flank? Something else?

dani, it's incredibly difficult. The key is as you mentioned Messi cannot be moved to the wing and as long as that can't be done, we have very little to work with. If we put Messi alongside another forward we end up with a different formation such as a 4-2-3-1 which means that Xavi goes too deep and Iniesta goes on the wing which no one likes. As for who I would buy I guess I have Falcao above all in mind. I have seen the Ibrahimovic experiment fail and need a quality finisher with great movement both on and off the ball.

The question that I would like to ask is why are we so sure Messi cannot play on the wing. If Cristiano can do it then why can't Messi? I am not trying to say let's do it and that it is the best solution or anything like that. Just wondering that yes we will lose something by moving Messi away from the center but why won't it work at all? As one of many solutions for possible evaluation can it not even be given a thought. Nowadays anyway the game is about interchangeability with players in most teams continuously changing positions throughout the match. Messi does play along with Higuain for Argentina in a kind of 4-3-3 where he starts on the right but actually has a free role. Is that not worth a thought at least? One major reason I can think of is that Messi himself won't agree as it's now known he himself insisted he be moved to the center. So we just have to leave it that way but that means we have to live with two problems. One is that we will sometimes see good openings from midfield amounto nothing with no one at the end of it and the defense easily clearing. The other is that we can totally forget about buying center forwards no matter how wonderful ones are available in the market.


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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by The Franchise on Tue Sep 04, 2012 11:58 pm

Cristiano doesnt play on the wing though JD, he completely vacates that position.

Also, Cristiano makes many of ball runs into the box and behind the rightback. Overall he moves off the ball quite a bit more than Messi. Messi comes towards the ball, whereas Cristiano goes away from it. Madrid also play on the counter attack and play more directly. So the space is open for him to move into.

Messi on the wing on paper wont change what he does on the pitch, he will play the exact same way he does now.

Intresting bringing up Argentina and Higuain. Another team that play directly. He can play in that space and leave his flank vacated, because they are playing directly and his position is dicated on the spaces given too him as the opponant has pushed men into attack.

For Barca its different, the defence is already set and in position, in numbers.
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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Wed Sep 05, 2012 5:15 am

@The Franchise wrote:Cristiano doesnt play on the wing though JD, he completely vacates that position.

Also, Cristiano makes many of ball runs into the box and behind the rightback. Overall he moves off the ball quite a bit more than Messi. Messi comes towards the ball, whereas Cristiano goes away from it. Madrid also play on the counter attack and play more directly. So the space is open for him to move into.

Messi on the wing on paper wont change what he does on the pitch, he will play the exact same way he does now.

Intresting bringing up Argentina and Higuain. Another team that play directly. He can play in that space and leave his flank vacated, because they are playing directly and his position is dicated on the spaces given too him as the opponant has pushed men into attack.

For Barca its different, the defence is already set and in position, in numbers.

Wonderful comments dani. As you say the situation is different and we can't really equate our dynamics with the models followed by these teams. I just thought that if Messi were to start on the right for us then with Alves already covering that entire flank Messi would often drop into the center and be behind the center forward ( say Falcao Smile ) and in this way it could be made to work ( much better than how it worked with Ibrahimovic due to Falcao's wonderful movement and lack of a strong natural desire to be a play maker ) but I understand and accept it's not that simple and the complications are largely on the lines of what you have explained.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by The Franchise on Wed Sep 05, 2012 12:16 pm

The problem I have with that is Dani Alves. He will no longer surprise the defence in attack. We have seen that before and it makes him more predictable.

Its one thing if Messi stays wide, gets the ball and then drives into the center.

However, he wont stay on the right and wait for it. He will come into the middle and pick the ball up there. The leftback will never have to worry about him and therefore can see Dani Alves coming a mile away.
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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by alexjanosik on Wed Sep 05, 2012 2:30 pm

@BarrileteCosmico wrote:What I don't entirely understand is why some people are assuming that Messi has suddenly turned lazy based only in 2 matches. Today, for example, he did press. So he's not unwilling to do it. Since that is the main reason towards adopting a back-line, it seems that there's little reason to do it now.

He pressed against Valencia,but a one off game is not enough.Fact remains that he has not pressed with the required intensity for close to 2 years now.Some games he overdoes it like in the first leg against Madrid.
Most games he doesnt put in the pressing effort required.
So it most certainly is a valid question.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by alexjanosik on Wed Sep 05, 2012 2:39 pm

jd
the issue isnt that Messi wont be quality out on the right.He will be world class on the right.Problem is putting him on the right will severely restrict his game from what its now.
Plus as dani excellently pointed,Messi will constanly move the center creating 2 problems.The first is the LB will see Alves coming all day long.
And 2,if Messi keeps coming central from the right,then whats the point of moving him right?
I think the false 9 is a great tactic.Just need Pedro and Villa back to their best.

If we do need a traditional 9,then Messi has to play as a 10.That means change of formation to 4-2-3-1.And I dont particularly like the formation.
Or we could always go back to the 3-3-1-3 but free will probably kill Tito if that happens.So thats out of the question.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Wed Sep 05, 2012 7:47 pm

@The Franchise wrote:The problem I have with that is Dani Alves. He will no longer surprise the defence in attack. We have seen that before and it makes him more predictable.

Its one thing if Messi stays wide, gets the ball and then drives into the center.

However, he wont stay on the right and wait for it. He will come into the middle and pick the ball up there. The leftback will never have to worry about him and therefore can see Dani Alves coming a mile away.

dani, very interesting thoughts. I didn't think from that perspective at all.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by messixaviesta on Wed Sep 05, 2012 7:54 pm

@alexjanosik wrote:jd
the issue isnt that Messi wont be quality out on the right.He will be world class on the right.Problem is putting him on the right will severely restrict his game from what its now.
Plus as dani excellently pointed,Messi will constanly move the center creating 2 problems.The first is the LB will see Alves coming all day long.
And 2,if Messi keeps coming central from the right,then whats the point of moving him right?
I think the false 9 is a great tactic.Just need Pedro and Villa back to their best.

If we do need a traditional 9,then Messi has to play as a 10.That means change of formation to 4-2-3-1.And I dont particularly like the formation.
Or we could always go back to the 3-3-1-3 but free will probably kill Tito if that happens.So thats out of the question.

alex, fair points. I don't deny that the false 9 is a great tactic but I just felt that a tactic like that will perhaps not work for too long. I could easily be wrong about that though but I thought after rivals get used to us playing like that, having a traditional number 9 can cause their defense more problems and help us make more out of the chances created. Pedro is coming back to his best. About Villa not sure at this point. Importantly tremendous off the ball movement is key to making this tactic work. Overall as alfred said very few games have been played so far and hence it's too early to make any firm judgments. Perhaps two months later we can understand better if the false number 9 is still working as well as it did in 2010-11 or not.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by sportsczy on Sat Sep 08, 2012 4:57 pm

We have a similar situation with CR7: When he's too lazy to track back, which is most games lol, it puts enormous pressure on the LB and Alonso. It's infuriating.

But what can you do? These guys are bullet proof. You can't bench them, rest them or criticize them. Pep maybe could because he had that cache. Tito is new and he cannot.

The best solution for Barca is to fix that defense tbh. You guys got away with some issues there because the pressing was so good. With the pressing slowing down, the defense needs to be more solid. I agree that you shouldn't change the shape of the team like moving the defensive line back. That would mess up the line spacing. But i do think Barca should invest in better defenders. Abidal missing has been a massive blow... more than anyone thought tbh.

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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by Babun on Sat Sep 08, 2012 4:58 pm

A simple question, why doesn't he track back/ press/ make off the ball runs anymore?
@sportsczy wrote:We have a similar situation with CR7: When he's too lazy to track back, which is most games lol, it puts enormous pressure on the LB and Alonso. It's infuriating.

But what can you do? These guys are bullet proof. You can't bench them, rest them or criticize them. Pep maybe could because he had that cache. Tito is new and he cannot.

The best solution for Barca is to fix that defense tbh. You guys got away with some issues there because the pressing was so good. With the pressing slowing down, the defense needs to be more solid. I agree that you shouldn't change the shape of the team like moving the defensive line back. That would mess up the line spacing. But i do think Barca should invest in better defenders. Abidal missing has been a massive blow... more than anyone thought tbh.
CR7 is very solid at the moment. He doesn't track back like crazy but he closes down fullbacks on his wing. Also, he stopped being a turnover machine. He passes back if there's no chance to penetrate.
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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by billy_gr on Sat Sep 08, 2012 6:51 pm

to me the best solution is players getting serious. if Pique and Masch can bring their A game consistently we would be fine. alao what sczy says is true. Abidal is a greater loss than i would have thought
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Re: Should our defensive line be dropped back?

Post by sportsczy on Sat Sep 08, 2012 7:07 pm

@billy_gr wrote:to me the best solution is players getting serious. if Pique and Masch can bring their A game consistently we would be fine. alao what sczy says is true. Abidal is a greater loss than i would have thought

For France too; With Sagna and Abidal there, i thought we would have competed for the Euro trophy. When both went out and we had Debuchy, Clichy and Evra, i knew we couldn't beat Spain. It was a dual devastating blow for us.

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