Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (2023)

Here are six playing patterns you can use in a 4-2-3-1 formation. we will usetactical analysismiTrainingIdentify four game patterns. These include wide penetration, while the other two are intended for core penetration. of gameplay are a requirement that you can find valuable below.

As I develop this set of passing and movement patterns, I'll share what worked for me in training camp, as well as the influence of some of the best teams in Europe playing in this formation. In particular, I noticed manyArsenalat the beginning of the Mikel Arteta era. EITHERFirst LeagueThe team showed very good, fast and fluid attacking football in the 4-2-3-1 formation and developed a style under the young Spanish coach that every pure player can appreciate.

In the three images below we use analytics to see a game pattern that I have detailed belowPattern: Center B
In this Premier League clash between Crystal Palace and Arsenal Mesut Özil, Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (exBorussia Dortmund) combined well to give Arsenal the opening goal.

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (2)

The game starts with a forward pass to Özil, Arsenal's CAM, who in turn plays a soft pass to Lacazette to continue the attack. LM Aubameyang begins his career with foresight.

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (3)

Due to his movement to lose the defender and his positive body shape, Lacazette is in a better position to make a penetrating pass. While Aubameyang continues his run to find the ball.

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (4)

(Video) 4-2-3-1- Full training programme (5 Tactical games, Attacking options, Pressing, Tactical Build Up)

Aubameyang makes an excellent first touch and shoots deep to the right of the keeper.

A combination of three passes that resulted in a goal, a goal that would not have been scored without the perfection of the passes, the security and the good physical condition of the attackers.

We will now see:

  1. Why train game patterns?
  2. Orientation 4-2-3-1
  3. wide pattern
  4. basic pattern
  5. get the success

Why train game patterns?

In short, we train game patterns to help players recognize and execute given combinations of passes and moves to break through opposing defenses. Sometimes this can mean having to penetrate to score a goal, sometimes it can also mean breaking through an opponent's attacking or midfield to overcome their defensive blocking or pressing.

If you are a coach, you should also consider individual and team confidence. If the attacking team only plays in reaction to each other, it means they try to find moments and gaps by chance in order to succeed. At the same time, the opponent can anticipate and defend.

The probable result is a lot of technical and tactical mistakes, which later lead to higher turnovers and damage the players' confidence. On the other hand, if you have a team that knows the system and manages to execute plays with minimal touches and such a high tempo, the opponent can't always react, which in turn offers a greater chance of success.

Orientation 4-2-3-1

The characteristics of a particular formation can only be highlighted by the play style of the team using it. The 4-2-3-1 is a flexible formation that offers plenty of versatility for possession-based teams looking to achieve numerical superiority in defense and midfield.

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (5)

Through the graphical annotation, observe each attacking player's major and minor moves, represented by the gray arrows.

Typically, in the build-up phase, either center can switch to defense to temporarily create a fake quarterback while the midfielders push forward.

(Video) Soccer TACTICS - Small Sided GAMES to Train the 4-2-3-1

Higher up the pitch, with big midfielders coming into midfield as well as the two central midfielders supporting from close range, this helps create numerical superiority as well as optional flexibility in the central areas. Because these five players play centrally, the two wingers can dominate their respective channels.

In addition, the two defenders provide support from behind, while the strikers remain the focus in attack. The center forward acts as a traditional number 9, among other things as a target player.

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (6)

In the tactical notation above, we see a common game moment where the 4-2-3-1 retains its value.
The CAM has positional flexibility to act on either side of the field and also between opposing lines. This makes him a harder player to tag; In addition, the MCA is essential to create overloads and high-quality scoring chances in the last third of the opponent.

Above, CAM receives a shot pass from CF, LM makes a penetrating run into midfield, which in turn serves to knock down the opposing RB. This allows the CAM to play a straight ball to the LM or LB when possible to continue the offense.

wide pattern

All patterns can be mirrored on both sides of the field. The "yellow" symbols on the field represent dummies. Please work at your own pace as over time you may wish to introduce one, two or three defenders alongside the dummies.

All game patterns are designed to play against a quarterback, which is represented by the placement of the dummies on the field. For any play pattern, I recommend placing the dummies in natural defensive positions relative to the game.

These playing patterns develop attacks that penetrate the opponent's defenses from afar. From there, you may want to introduce your own principles of crossing and finishing, or allow the ball carrier to dribble freely into the penalty area and determine their own options.

Length A:

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (7)

(Video) Pep Guardiola's 4-2-3-1! Manchester City F.C. tactics!

  • RB advances to RM; RM goes wide as he receives the pass
  • After making the opening pass, the RB makes a run to the channel.
  • As RM moves the ball towards midfield, CM moves slightly away from RM to receive the unmarked ball and also give themselves the angle for the next forward pass.
  • The time-to-motion ratio of the third pass is crucial as the RB needs to receive the pass before going offside and the CM doesn't need to delay their pass before losing angle to play forward.
  • RM should try to offer the CM a subdued pass so he can make the third and final pass with a bunt
  • The RB should keep it wide on his run so he has a good body shape when receiving the ball.

Width B:

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (8)

  • The RB gives a short forward touch to trigger the CF's fall before receiving the pass
  • Although it is a long first pass, the CF should make the second pass in one touch if possible.
  • As the ball moves to the CF, the CAM makes an angled path to the channel.
  • CF passes to CM who then plays RM.
  • At this point, RM will offer a top-down movement and want to stay wide so he has the space and angle to play the final pass.
  • Ideally, the CM should match RM, who can then play forward with a Bun if possible. Posture and shape are crucial here.
  • Again, that extra touch can be the final pass killer, so passing quality is key.
  • The CAM needs to direct his run to give himself a greater degree of flexibility when trying to cross the offside line to get the final pass.
  • From here he would put together a good center to end the opportunity.

Width C:

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (9)

  • The RB takes a quick touch forward as a trigger for the CF to fall short at their highest point to find the pass.
  • When the bass moves, the CAM makes an angular path between the lines and a sufficient distance from the CF
  • If the quality of the first pass is good, the CF can make a pass with one touch in the CAM race
  • At this point, the LM should angle its trajectory to create a trajectory that meets a potential pierce path. The LM would serve to create space for the LB and take the opposing winger with him on his run.
  • At this point, LB should try to gain a foothold quickly to gain big support and continue to develop a quality offense.

Length D:

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (10)

  • LB dribbles forward with ball in middle step and with good ball control
  • To simulate when an opposing player would activate the LB press, release the ball in a forward but realistic midfield position
  • The moment he has to release the ball from LB, CF makes a short run to receive the ball without scoring
  • Another good pass from LB, CF makes a short pass to CAM who moves away from his central position to escape the pressure
  • At this point, the LM also makes a covert move to go deep, but then rolls the defender out and runs forward into the channel.
  • Because the LM cannot delay its run, the CAM must attempt to pass forward through the gap in time to find the LM's run before going offside.
  • This is a good position to develop a "crossing" opportunity to "finish".

basic pattern

The key difference between central penetration and wide penetration is that central patterns in opposing midfield often result in players getting into good scoring positions. When it comes to wide patterns that are established, they often result in wide cross positions or dribbling opportunities in the area of ​​a wide position. That is, unless the pattern includes the last ball in the box. Please note that all game patterns can be reflected on either side of the field.

Center A:

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (11)

  • The RB carries the ball forward in midfield to develop shorter passing paths, which in turn serves to make passes faster and more efficient.
  • Unless he's being pressured, the RB will have to react to play the first pass to the CF's train, which is making a deep run.
  • When the ball passes the CAM's movement is critical as he needs to bend his barrel enough away from the CF to be a passing option and also to help himself have a positive body shape, when he finds the pass target. ,
  • The first pass should be a perfect pass to the forward's preferred foot to allow for a one-touch hit to the CAM.
  • The RM should remain open while serving to create width around opposing full-backs and be a secondary option if the final pass is missed.
  • Passing qualities as well as timing and movement of runs are critical to success.

Center B:

(Video) 4-2-3-1 basic attacking options!

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (12)

  • The RB carries the ball to a forward position in midfield
  • The starting position of the CAM should be taller and wider than the CF, which would be a natural staggered position in open play.
  • The CAM receives a pass from the RB and if he can give the first touch as a pass to the CF he must do so
  • The CF makes a high-low move away from the CB just before the CAM passes
  • The CF's body shape is crucial as he must try to receive the ball with an eye on the opponent's goal.
  • It's the subtle and delicate details that determine success as CF need to be late in their run to avoid being tagged and have a good first touch to receive and play forward.
  • From the moment the CAM passes the CF, the LM must run at full speed to hit the defender behind, in this case the winger.
  • In case the final pass isn't available, the support LB is also a wide option to continue the offense.
  • After CAM makes a pass to CF, he can also circle CF to be an option in the room on the opposite side.
  • Fit quality, body shape and well-timed runs are not to be underestimated as crucial components of success.

get the success

The biggest challenge is getting the players to immediately recognize the playing pattern being trained at the same time in a 90-minute gameTactics. However, with the right open playing conditions in training, we can develop each player's ability to read the game and recognize those moments. Take a look at my recent training articles: 'Formation: rules of the game in 4-4-2'as well as 'Formation: rules of the game in 4-3-3'to see how I train my players to recognize and execute these practiced playing patterns in competitive play.

Center and extensive options: We have developed a total of six options for a team playing in 4-2-3-1 to search, create and execute. Passing qualities as well as the right timing and movement will always be crucial for success. When you start working with your players, reduce it to one or two patterns per week at most. Let him get used to it, learn the pattern well and build confidence.

And if:*This is usually the point at which a coach needs to prove their worth as a mentor, as there are many opportunities for pauses in the conditioning game, and helping players figure out their "what ifs" will be crucial to establishing a develop safe team based on ball possession.
Keep in mind that it is important for players to not only identify but also know their playing patternsand ifif the desired result cannot be achieved.

mentality, repetition and patience.: Try not to rush to success too early, the more you give the player responsibility for performance and create the right attitude within the group, the sooner you will see the fruits of this training. Fostering a problem-solving and discovery mentality, rather than avoiding mistakes and forcing chances, will greatly enhance player learning and help achieve the desired outcome.

If you enjoyed this article and found it valuable, or if you have any questions or would like more information on playing patterns in the 4-2-3-1 formation, please tweet me.@tacticasfaciles. I'll be posting another training article on Reverse Spike Attacking right here on

Training: game pattern in 4-2-3-1 (13)

Qualified UEFA Coach | Analyst Writer | Based in Dublin, Ireland | Connect on Twitter and IG @easytactics


1. 4 2 3 1 Warm Up Passing Coordination, Training Session. FOOTBALL/SOCCER
(Tactics Creator)
2. 4-2-3-1 attacking. The analysis of formation and players role!
(Code Football)
3. Michael Appleton • Coaching patterns of play in a 1-4-2-3-1 • CV Academy Session 2
(The Coaches' Voice)
4. 4-2-3-1 finishing training programme!
(Code Football)
5. 4-2-3-1 Alternate Build Up Patterns
(Carlon Carpenter)
6. Crossing and finishing pattern by Pep Guardiola (4-2-3-1 formation)! Positioning analysis!
(Code Football)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Otha Schamberger

Last Updated: 03/30/2023

Views: 6035

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (75 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Otha Schamberger

Birthday: 1999-08-15

Address: Suite 490 606 Hammes Ferry, Carterhaven, IL 62290

Phone: +8557035444877

Job: Forward IT Agent

Hobby: Fishing, Flying, Jewelry making, Digital arts, Sand art, Parkour, tabletop games

Introduction: My name is Otha Schamberger, I am a vast, good, healthy, cheerful, energetic, gorgeous, magnificent person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.