Can Wenger learn from the legendary Herbert Chapman?
Hi all, Middy here again with an interesting thought for you all, can Wenger learn from the legendary Herbert Chapman? Herbert Chapman played a WM formation, in numbers it is a 3-2-2-3 formation, it allowed for narrow play while pressing as soon as the team lost the ball, the formation lends itself to possession based football as well.
We all saw against Zagreb at how Arsenal defenders can play with three centre-backs when Wenger finally made a tactical change after Giroud got himself sent off. Yes they looked ‘dodgy’ at times but I would like to point out that they do not practice the Herbert Chapman formation and as such, it was new to them and they had to improvise. Even after saying that, I hope people will remember that we didn’t concede another goal after swapping to three at the back.
The 2 holding CM players are obvious to everyone right? Coquelin and Cazorla, our Giant Midgets, they may be small in size but they control the CM to such a high level that other players have to look up to them.
I personally think that now is where the real genius of the formation kicks in, two ACMs who can be of different types along with three Forwards, only one of those have to be a striker. Arsenal fans will know that Bellerin wasn’t a RB when he came to us, he has become one of the world’s best and for me, he only has to show that he can consistently play at that level for a full season. He was a more attacking player originally though and that can be encouraged again for the right sided attack with the added bonus of him being able to press high up the field and cause the opposition to make mistakes. Same thing on the left side, this time the player is Gibbs.
So let’s recap at what we have so far…
3 CB who can defend.
2 holding CM who can defend and also pass accurately.
2 defensive minded forwards who have the pace to get in behind the opposition but also have experience at defending.
That is so far 7 out of 10 outfield players who can defend.
Can we bump that up to 8 if we include Alexis as 1 of the ACM?
For me, the only thing that is missing is a passmaster in the ACM spot to help unlock the oppositions defence, I think we can all agree that Ozil can do that, also if the rest of the team is so pressing then Ozil can relax on that side and focus more on his good points, drifting into spots and able to thread the ball through to players who run.
Players who run…
We have Theo, again we seen how defenders sit back to deal with his pace and how that creates space between the oppositions def and mid, unless the opposition is happy to sit back, Theo will create chances for others just by being on the pitch and constantly looking to play off the last mans shoulder. Think of that pace as well, Theo in the middle and Bellerin on the right, a high line would be suicide for oppositions.
This WM formation will mean Ramsey gets more chances to play in the middle.
The Ox can develop more as a central player which is what he wants to do.
Wilshere (if he can stay fit) will be able to play in the middle which is where he prefers.
So everyone, is it time for Wenger to open a history book and learn from Chapman and apply that to modern football or is he right to stick to the 4-2-3-1 formation?