Having previously been a big fan of the good old 4-4-2 I was leaking far too many goals in my 3rd season with Sunderland. I pulled 1 centre mid back to the defensive mid position, changed some roles and walla, my problems were solved! Less goals conceded, much better passing, possession and also more goals! In my first season with this tactic I went from previously finishing just inside the top-half to being serious title challengers and finishing 2nd. I was most impressed with how well this tactic worked against the bigger teams who I use to take a good hard thrashing from.
This tactic is generally an attacking tactic with a control mentality, but there is excellent balance between defense and attack. Very rarely do I find myself being punished by a counter attack and theres always plenty of options going forward, the given roles create good angles between the players and results in some very nice attacking football. Also expect goals galore from your defender that attacks the far post!
Key roles and player types
DMC - Deep-Lying Playmaker - Support - perhaps the key position in this formation and I can't believe the difference just moving this one player back from MC makes, controls the passing in the game and is always there to stop that opposition midfielder who roams forward. Key attributes: Passing, Tackling, Creativity, Positioning, Teamwork.
MC -Box-to-Box Midfielder - Support - supports in midfield and key in getting forward and supporting the strikers, scores plenty of goals for a midfielder. Key attributes: Acceleration, Passing, Anticipation, Decisions, Off the Ball, Work rate.
ST - Complete Forward - Support - In a support role often finds space between the defense and midfield and links well with everyone, gets lots of assists and goals. Ideal would be a very well rounded player with good attributes all over. Key attributes: All Physical attributes, Teamwork, Passing, Finishing.
ST - Advanced Forward - Attack - The spearhead of your attack, chases down defenders and puts pressure on them and as long as he has good speed will find himself in countless one on one situations. Key attributes: Acceleration, Pace, Anticipation, Off the Ball, Finishing.