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Zidane's 4-1-2-1-2 Real Madrid / TREBLE Winning 132 Goals

I emulated the 4-3-1-2 (or 4-1-2-1-2 narrow) Zidane used in the seasons 2016-2017 and 2017-18 and won the treble with Real Madrid scoring a lot.

By on Sep 08, 2023   12147 views   0 comments
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Downloads: 2556 / Size: 44.3 kB / Added: 2023-09-08
Football Manager 2023 Tactics - Zidane's 4-1-2-1-2 Real Madrid / TREBLE Winning 132 Goals
"We must not let ourselves get driven off course, no matter what happens we must stick to our natural game.”
Zinedine Zidane

Hi guys, welcome to my new tactic emulation.

This time, I emulated Zinedine Zidane's 4-1-2-1-2 (or 4-3-1-2) tactic, the one he used in season 2017-18 finished winning the Champions League against Liverpool in the final 3-1 on May 26th, 2018.

This was the third of a three Champions won in a row by Zinedine Zidane. Even if he often used a 4-3-3 too, (I will make another video about this tactic after I tested it), the French genius decided to make the most of Isco's qualities by playing him as an attacking midfielder behind Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo.

In the final in Kiev, Zidane confirmed the same team that had demolished Juventus in Cardiff just 365 days earlier, with Isco as the attacking midfielder behind Benzema and Ronaldo.

One of the most discussed topics in the lead-up concerned how Real Madrid would handle Klopp's suffocating gegenpressing, which had already troubled City and Roma this Champions League season.

Zidane responded in perhaps the simplest way, with technique. He didn't stray from his team's playing principles, trusting the extraordinary abilities of his midfielders, his two center-backs, and particularly Marcelo, the world's best playmaking full-back.

The tactical weapon of Real Madrid was clear from the outset: create play on the left with as many players as possible to confuse Alexander Arnold while simultaneously attacking the weaker side with passes to Carvajal, one of the best crossers in the world.

Overload the right half-space with quality, and when losing possession, have more than one man to counter Liverpool's highly dangerous positive transitions on Salah's side.



Now, let's examine how I emulated the tactic in Football Manager 2023.

The formation is a 4-1-2-1-2 with a defensive midfielder in front of the defense (at the beginning I wanted to chose an anchorman to emulate Casemiro's role but it was not good enough at closing down so I chose a defensive midfielder.

Casemiro drops down between the CBs and wins the ball back). The defensive midfielder is told to close down more, mark tighter and tackle harder.

The goalkeeper is a standard one with no instructions.

The right Wb is a full-back on support and I told him to take fewer risks, cross aim far post (Carvajal was and still is one of the best cross-maker), shoot less often, hold position and close down less. He will move forward but less than Mendy (or Alaba) on the opposite side.

The two CBs are one simple defender and one BPD both on defend duty as they hold their line, using Casemiro as their shield in the centre forcing opposition wider.

Ramos was a bpd so I chose a bpd to emulate his role and told him just to close down more, while I told the other CD to take fewer risks.

The other two midfielders, Modric and Kroos were the heart of Real Madrid's play.

On the left, Kroos needs to drop back to the left of Casemiro so DLPs has the movement and with a few tweaks with PIs More Riskier Passes and close down less, I believe he plays more like the real thing. I chose to switch to Support duty is there if you need to commit more players to the attack, but if you need more protection you can choose defend duty.

On the right, Modric is a central midfielder on support, and I told him to pass it shorter, get forward and dribble more. If you want, with more riskier passes, he will create a link directly to the CF and also more direct passing to get those diagonal passing Modric makes.

For Isco's role, advanced playmaker on attack is the best, not static, and with the attack duty he has license to dribble and drive into the box. Instructions: roam from position, get further forward.

Lastly, the two Complete forwards, one on support and the other on attack, to replicate Benzema and Ronaldo's movements, I told them to close down more to try to steal the ball high up the pitch, the other instructions are preset.

The mentality is positive, with a fairly wide width, play out of defense, higher tempo, work ball into the box and be more expressive.

In transition: regroup and counter, Real Madrid did not do gegenpressing, but once lost the ball, they regrouped to avoid to be caught out in defense.

For the same reason, I chose mid block and standard defensive line, and slightly more often for pressing, prevent short gk distribution and trap outside.

With this tactic I won the Spanish Liga scoring 89 goal (best attack) and conceeding only 27 (2nd best), won the Champions scoring 27 goals and allowing 5 and the Copa del Rey scoring 16 goals and allowing 5.

That's all for this tactic I hope it works for you too.

A hug from your Arrigo Sacchi.

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Downloads: 2556 / Size: 44.3 kB / Added: 2023-09-08
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