It’s All 4-4-2 – Part 2

This is the second instalment of the ‘It’s All 4-4-2‘ series. For Part 1 click here

4-4-2 to 4-4-2 ‘Diamond’


To start us off, this is probably the simplest way to explain my theory as realistically a lot of teams play this way without knowing it. It is also the formation that takes the fewest ‘changes’ to accomplish.

A great example of this in the professional game would be Liverpool under Brendan Rodgers, although there are plenty more (and likely more recent) that you’ll undoubtedly be able to find.

The simple concept is that one centre midfielder (MC’s in the image) is asked to sit in-front of the central defenders (CD) to not only protect them, but also start  attacking moves from deep whilst the other central midfielder is asked to push on and play behind the forwards (FC’s), in a typical “number 10” role if you like.

Challenge Examples:

  • MC 1 – “How many times can you start an attacking move from deep?”
  • MC 1 – “How many times can you receive the ball from a defender?”
  • MC 1 – “How many attacks can you stop?”
  • MC 2 – “How many passes can you make in/around the opponents box?”
  • MC 2 – “How many chances can you create?”
  • MC 2 – “Can you join every attack?”

Using this method, only 2 players are actually asked to do anything other than their ‘normal’ 442 roles, thus minimising the potential for confusion.

Here is the ‘actual’ formation that you would be playing:


In the next post, we’ll look at ‘wing-back’ formation variations, namely 3-5-2/5-3-2 and Conte’s 3-4-3

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5.

Don’t Stop Here

More To Explore

Serialised Dissertation Pt. 8 – Discussion

Here’s Part 8 of my dissertation breakdown, which begins to review what we’ve looked at so far. Be sure to check back next week for the final instalment! DISCUSSION TRAITS AND CHARACTERISTICS In interesting element within these strategies is to