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Tactics and Formations


romanticscot

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I'd like to start a thread to discuss tactics and Formations. Right now to me, it seems unlikely we will have all of our best players available and I'd like to consider the implications of not having Hickey, Tierney or some others.

Some of you have a better mind for this than I do and I'm interested to see what you come up with if we have to or could end up playing 4 at the back, two pivots, traditional wingers etc. Come up with a few starting 11's and explain what scenario it prepares us for. Of course, feel free to chip in with what you think is our best 11 if everyone is fit.

 

Thanks

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2 hours ago, Caledonian Craig said:

If Tierney is not fit then no point in playing the left-side pivot as we are much less effective. I would prefer to go to a back four with Robertson L/B and Hickey or Patterson R/B. And perhaps play a defensive midfielder in front of back four.

I’ve made this point before and been told ‘we can’t play a back four.’ Trouble is, without Tierney the 3 doesn’t work. I think we might as well go with a back four and have an extra body in midfield as we’ve got real strength in depth there.

As far as the midfield goes, if we play with two deeper midfielders, based on current form & level they’re playing at, the best two would be Gilmour and Christie.
 

 

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We played a back four in the NL against Ukraine and Ireland (albeit with Tierney instead of Robertson). We also played it against Ukraine away  but we were lucky to get away with it. I think a few of the players had been ill to be fair and we had Greg Taylor at LB. What defensive midfielder so we have other than Jack? Can Christie really fill that role?

 

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4 hours ago, The Black Bra said:

I’ve made this point before and been told ‘we can’t play a back four.’ Trouble is, without Tierney the 3 doesn’t work. I think we might as well go with a back four and have an extra body in midfield as we’ve got real strength in depth there.

As far as the midfield goes, if we play with two deeper midfielders, based on current form & level they’re playing at, the best two would be Gilmour and Christie.
 

 

If there is a way to get McGregor, Gilmour, Christie, McTominay and McGinn on the park at the same time, I'm all for it. 

However, I would say accommodating Tierney and Robertson should always take priority over the rest, as they are arguably our 2 best players.

I do think it won't be long before Clarke is forced to change tactics. If/when Doak is ready, we'll have an even bigger conundrum.

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56 minutes ago, Tartan blood said:

If there is a way to get McGregor, Gilmour, Christie, McTominay and McGinn on the park at the same time, I'm all for it. 

However, I would say accommodating Tierney and Robertson should always take priority over the rest, as they are arguably our 2 best players.

I do think it won't be long before Clarke is forced to change tactics. If/when Doak is ready, we'll have an even bigger conundrum.

Ferguson too....

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17 minutes ago, bdgsct said:

Ferguson too....

100% you have to mention Lewis Ferguson 

Who would he displace, McGregor ?? 

Playing at a higher level than McGregor, younger by 6 or 7 years and must be due a start for Scotland…… 

Billy Gilmour of late for Brighton has been sensational and must be an automatic start (on current form) 

Could Ferguson + Gilmour play together 
 

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6 hours ago, broraboy said:

100% you have to mention Lewis Ferguson 

Who would he displace, McGregor ?? 

Playing at a higher level than McGregor, younger by 6 or 7 years and must be due a start for Scotland…… 

Billy Gilmour of late for Brighton has been sensational and must be an automatic start (on current form) 

Could Ferguson + Gilmour play together 
 

A bit leftfield but I'd like too see us attempt to get what I believe to be our best 11 players on the park in one of the frendlies and see what happens. 

          Hickey Hendry Tierney 

Patterson Gilmour Christie Robertson

           McTominay       Mcginn

                        Ferguson

Kind of a false nine (hate that phrase) with Ferguson and mcT interchanging. Obvious risks are lack of height at the back and target man up front but all very comfortable on the ball - very fluid formation. Would be tricky for opposition defenders with no one to mark and so many runners from deep.

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2 hours ago, Kirk said:

Callum McGregor has been pish all season, would happily see him dropped to accommodate Ferguson in some way

I think Gilmour’s form means that he should be taking McGregor’s place in the first XI anyway and I’d be interested to see a two of Gilmour and Christie tried in the friendlies to see if it has more bite than the previously tried Gilmour - McGregor.
 

Ferguson is competing with McGinn and McTominay, though, IMO. Presuming everyone is fit and we play a back 5, I’d be interested to try Gilmour & Christie with the three of McGinn, McTominay and Ferguson ahead. The Levein tactic might finally be a realistic possibility……!

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8 hours ago, bdgsct said:

A bit leftfield but I'd like too see us attempt to get what I believe to be our best 11 players on the park in one of the frendlies and see what happens. 

          Hickey Hendry Tierney 

Patterson Gilmour Christie Robertson

           McTominay       Mcginn

                        Ferguson

Kind of a false nine (hate that phrase) with Ferguson and mcT interchanging. Obvious risks are lack of height at the back and target man up front but all very comfortable on the ball - very fluid formation. Would be tricky for opposition defenders with no one to mark and so many runners from deep.

Think we will probably need a keeper 

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13 hours ago, Kirk said:

Callum McGregor has been pish all season, would happily see him dropped to accommodate Ferguson in some way

Yep. McGregor has been class for years but now looks very much like the 70 games a season Celtic are playing him in every year have worn him down. 

With the form of McGinn, Gilmour, Ferguson, McTominay & Christie centrally you can’t really justify McGregor starting at present. 

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If Tierney and Robertson are fit we play 5 at the back. Thats our best system and causes other teams problems.

If Tierney isnt fit we have a problem as no other player can play the role he does. (Id be tempted to see if Hickey could do it). The natural thing to suggest then is go to a back 4 however we have shown time and time again that our CBs arent good enough to play 2 in the centre, especially with full backs who like to get forward. This coupled with the fact we have no outright defensive mids means that we leave ourselves stupidly exposed playing 4 at the back and as weird as it sounds I actually think our midfield plays worse with 5 in there as opposed to 4.

In an ideal world we would try out a 433 with wide players as an alternative when Tierney isnt fit however I dont think we currently have the players for this. Possibly if Fraser returns and Barnes commits however this would probably mean a midfield 3 of McGinn, McTomminay and McGreggor with the impact of McGinn and McTomminay likely being significantly lessened.

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23 hours ago, bdgsct said:

Ferguson too....

I'm a big fan of Ferguson, and I'm sure his time will come. But if I was creating a pecking order he would be at least 6th behind 1. McGinn 2. McTominay 3. Gilmour 4. Christie 5. McGregor.

And, to be honest, Armstrong and Fraser could stake a claim before Ferguson as well. 

I know all of the above don't play the exact same role, but Ferguson will really struggle to justify a spot ahead of most of them. Especially if we continue to go with 4 midfielders, and not 5.

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1 hour ago, Diamond Scot said:

If Tierney and Robertson are fit we play 5 at the back. Thats our best system and causes other teams problems.

If Tierney isnt fit we have a problem as no other player can play the role he does. (Id be tempted to see if Hickey could do it). The natural thing to suggest then is go to a back 4 however we have shown time and time again that our CBs arent good enough to play 2 in the centre, especially with full backs who like to get forward. This coupled with the fact we have no outright defensive mids means that we leave ourselves stupidly exposed playing 4 at the back and as weird as it sounds I actually think our midfield plays worse with 5 in there as opposed to 4.

In an ideal world we would try out a 433 with wide players as an alternative when Tierney isnt fit however I dont think we currently have the players for this. Possibly if Fraser returns and Barnes commits however this would probably mean a midfield 3 of McGinn, McTomminay and McGreggor with the impact of McGinn and McTomminay likely being significantly lessened.

In my opinion, one of the biggest mistakes from the Euros was playing 2 strikers and 5 defenders. Leaving only 3 midfielders. Which seems mental in hindsight, since it is basically our strongest position.

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1 hour ago, Tartan blood said:

In my opinion, one of the biggest mistakes from the Euros was playing 2 strikers and 5 defenders. Leaving only 3 midfielders. Which seems mental in hindsight, since it is basically our strongest position.

Agree. Croatia and then Ukraine in the WC tactically bent us over before we ditched that one. Tbf to Clarke he sorted it out by going 4 at the back in the NL tie. 5-4-1 or 4-5-1 (with wider attacking midfielders) seems the only way to go at the moment.

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1 hour ago, bdgsct said:

Agree. Croatia and then Ukraine in the WC tactically bent us over before we ditched that one. Tbf to Clarke he sorted it out by going 4 at the back in the NL tie. 5-4-1 or 4-5-1 (with wider attacking midfielders) seems the only way to go at the moment.

I'm actually baffled as to where the logic in playing 2 low-scoring strikers at the same time came from. And at the time we didn't even have McTominay scoring freely. 

I remember thinking that it was all well and good that Dykes and Adams could play nice wee passes to each other, but it never led to  anything.

1 striker is plenty when you have goalscoring midfielders. That striker should be the most natural finisher. Right now that is Shankland.

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