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Help needed to counter the 4-3-3 deep


Sep 13, 2011
Hi Guys

So while the 4-3-3 Deep (with a DM and 2 wide wingers) has historically been a favorite tactic to use by many of us, my question is - 'how to counter it.?' Recently i've noticed that my standard tactics have been doing a pretty bad job of countering this setup.

Typically i use the 4-2-3-1 wide for home matches and the 4-1-2-1-2 Narrow Diamond for away matches. In about 10 matches against teams using the 4-3-3 deep, home or away (currently Arsenal and Southampton in EPL, PSG in the UCL etc.) my record is 2 wins, 4 draws and 4 defeats.

The Diamond formation gets hammered of course because of overload in the wide areas but my attacking 4-2-3-1 at best cancels it out and i have high scoring draws, even at home. So far i've found limited success using a standard 4-4-2 and trying to tweak it, but though it's much better defensively, it has not been convincing, resulting either in narrow 1-0 wins from set-pieces or low-scoring draws. I also tried a 4-3-3 deep of my own but the tactic hasn't worked out for the same reason.

Any ideas on how i can counter as i seem to be having trouble figuring things out? Would welcome suggestions on tactical styles or instructions etc.