Date: 7th July 2008 at 2:37pm
Written by:

Our formation for the upcoming season is something that has been heavily debated on several sites, between the tactics themselves and the possible players to fill out those tactical ideas. I just thought I’d post what I personally have in mind and see what your ideas were as well. So feel free to post what you’d like to see us doing on the pitch this term.

When Skrtel arrived, if you’ll recall, there were several mentions of Carra knowing Rafa’s plans for the future. Now, adding two wing backs has simply made them even clearer. It’s obvious that Carra needs a breather here and there, he’s not a spring chick anymore. Getting a day off here and there would keep him fresh and at his best. Because of this I think we will see a combination of formations at the back in both a 4 man back line and a “5” man one.

Depending on the opposition I think you may see something like this from time to time….

—————–Torres—-Keane——————
———————Gerrard———
—————Barry———Masch———
—–Dossena—-Agger–Skrtel–Carra—-Degen
———————Reina———————–

Use the full backs to provide the necessary width while having 3 of the best cb’s in the world covering behind them. This would also provide space in the middle for the 3 up top, especially providing for Gerrard to come running onto balls centered in from out wide. Barry can go forward as necessary as well as play a holding position alongside Mascherano

Having so many great cb’s isn’t going to be a problem as some foresee, nor will Rafa put Jamie out at RB except in emergencies. He simply isn’t the attacking option necessary for a title contending side out wide. Nor would Carra want to be out there permanently I would think.

As for the typical 4 man back line, I think you’ll simply see the 3 CB rotate with a Hyppia appearance now and again, the way it was meant to be this season.

—————-Torres——Keane——-
———————Gerrard———————-
——-Babel————————New Winger
———————-Masch——————–
——-Dossena—-Skrtel—-Agger—-Degen
———————-Reina———————–

Leaving Gerrard in the center is imperative for his morale I think, but it also allows him to track back if he sees fit. Unlike this season, when everyone thought he was magical in his role behind Torres, I just thought it showed how few attacking options we really had. Losing Gerrard in the midfield is a blow. He’s a bulldog out there, and does best to trail the play slightly, finding seams in the defense to unleash his massive shot or pick out a pass. Let’s get wide and let’s spread the opposition, not only for our larger rivals, but especially against sides out for a bore draw with us on the road. I think this will allow us to break down those defenses with much more ease.

All in all, whether it’s Keane or another striker, I think it’s clear now with the sale of Crouch that the funds will be there for some attacking options. Barry / Alonso is a wash, Crouch +10 million = Keane at the absolute worst, and now we have 10 mil of the original 20 mil or so I’d say we probably had set by to say nothing of what will be generated in sales the rest of the way. Finding 15-20 mil for a wide player should not be a problem, and with that out of the way I’d say we have a side capable of bringing home #19.

In Rafa We Trust