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Looking to play a 3-2-3-2-1 formation.

Have some questions about two inners. Also anyone running it. Do you like it?

Is this the shape you are referring to when you say 3-2-3-2? 

4-3-3 [or 4-1-2-3]


- 4 at the back, with 2 full backs (FB )and 2 half backs (HB)

- 3 in midfield, 1 centre mid [CM] and 2 inside forwards [IF]

- 3 fluid forwards [FW]

Coaching Points:

- Avoid calling forwards left, right, centre as this can often give a restrictive mind set. Make it clear they should play the space they are in, and play off of fellow players (similar mindset with the inside forwards)

- One half back should be higher than the other. This should occur when the ball is on their side of the pitch i.e if the ball is your team is on possession on the right hand side of the pitch, the right full back should be high supporting player while the left full back should tuck in and be deeper

- Notice the triangular relationship between the midfield and forward line respectively, and how this then combines

thanks so much. just one question. if ball gets past FW does IF come over or does HB come up?  thanks

Hi Ed,

Apologies for not getting back to you, must have missed the reply. 

As default, i set my teams up to play a 3/4 press, so if the ball was wide we'd set up as below. The role of the inside forwards is to plug the gaps left by the forwards, and therefore they should attempt to remain in these positions (altering a foot here and there depending on whats behind them). Therefore in this position, you want the half back coming higher to reduce the space available and help to contain the ball against the sideline.

This would change if the press switched to full or half court.

Hope this helps,


4-3-3 3/4 Press [4] (Positioning)


- 3/4 Press whilst playing 4-3-3

- Arrows indicate positioning relative to other players in position

- 16 yard hit out on the LH

Coaching Points:

- RF stands in front of ball on the 23 metre line

- CF is still the highest player, just in front of the 23 metre line, 5 yards to the left of RF

- RF blocks the line ball

- LF should be at a distance which enables them to cover the line if the ball is played to RH

- IF fill in the gaps left by the fowards, being aware of the angles available to the player on the ball

- CM stands almost in line with the ball (slightly left), in a deeper position, covering the crash ball through the CF

- Holding press, allowing the defensive back 4 to play with the ball

- Goal is to be patient and wait for them to play through the press. This will then allow team to squeeze when they enter pockets

thanks got it

love the press. if player with ball gets past my right forward then inner picks up player or right back?

If the left half (currently on the ball) manages to directly eliminate your forward (which I'd be very concerned about) you would be looking for the inner to come across, and your own right half to step up slightly to reduce the space. 

The best result is the inner gets across quickly and wins the ball, or effectively channels the ball carrier into the right half. Another win is if the right forward is given enough time by their team mates to get back into position - effectively resetting the press.

The big thing in this position is you have the sideline on your side. Position the right forward so there is slightly more space on their right hand side (towards the channel). This should give the ball carrier extra incentive to try and play the ball into a very tight space in which you can apply multi-player pressure.

Hope this all makes sense,



Awesome thanks it helps alot
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