Friday, March 24, 2017
Soccer's 4-3-2-1 Formation
A graduate of the University of Alabama, Birmingham resident Ramon Arias has served as president of the pizza franchise Bravo Corporation since 2002. An avid follower of Alabama collegiate sports, Ramon Arias has also spent time coaching his children in Birmingham youth soccer.
There are numerous ways for a coach to organize the 10 players he or she is allowed to have on the field. The most common - and basic - is the 4-4-2 with four defenders, four midfielders, and two attackers. Another variation is the 4-3-2-1, appropriately dubbed the Christmas tree formation.
Like the 4-4-2, the Christmas tree formation employs four defenders (two fullbacks and two center-backs) who rarely cross the half line, but that is the only way in which the two are similar. Two of the three central midfielders are expected to play attacking roles, while one is expected to hang back and focus on defending. Having just one dedicated striker presents challenges in creating offense on the run, but the formation is best used when protecting a lead.