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Diamonds Aren't Just For Girls…

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For a while now, there have been grumbles of discontent from fans at Hillsborough about Wednesday’s performance. “It’s not the same football as the first year, we’re not attacking enough,” many have cried.

After missing out on a place at Wembley last season, many have been calling for Carlos to freshen things up on the pitch. It would appear that he has been listening, after this week he confirmed the Owls would be using a diamond formation more often this year.

Having predominantly played 4-4-2 in his first and second season, many fans will see this as a welcome change. Not only will this new system inject more fluidity in to the Owls’ football, but it also suits the personnel available at Carlos’ disposal.

Starting from the top, this change of system benefits Wednesday’s many striking options. In the diamond, it will allow Carlos to select two main strikers from his seven potential options, with room for either Gary Hooper or Fernando Forestieri to play just behind as well.

This means more playing time for the like of Sam Winnall, Steven Fletcher, and even Jordan Rhodes. With Forestieri and Hooper adapt at dropping in to the pockets just behind, it should also increase the service for the two attackers, which should hopefully result in more goals.

In midfield, the change of tactic seems logical too. Wednesday are overloaded with players who prefer to play in central areas, with very few natural wide players. If you look at the players who have played out wide in recent seasons, Ross Wallace, Forestieri, Adam Reach and George Boyd, only Reach would be described as a natural winger. In the case of Boyd and Wallace, both are left footed and play on the right, cutting infield at every opportunity. Moving to a narrower formation suits them, as it is only what they would do when playing out wide anyway.

For the likes of Kieran Lee, Barry Bannan, Almen Abdi, Sam Hutchinson and David Jones, there are roles for all of them in the new system. Bannan will naturally slot in to left side of the diamond, a position which saw him at his very best in the 2015/16 season. Lee’s dynamic style of play will suit him playing to the right, or even at the top of the diamond, and Abdi should get more opportunities to play in his favoured number ten role. For Jones and Hutchinson, they are the natural choices to play at the base of the diamond, protecting the back four and picking up possession from deeper areas.

With the midfield much narrower, there will be more dependence on both fullbacks to provide the width. I feel this will see the beginning of Adam Reach’s transition to becoming our first choice left back, as his offensive qualities will be key down the left hand side. His athletic nature and work rate will see him slot nicely in to that role, whilst coaching and match experience should see him improve defensively. For Jack Hunt down the right, it will be business as usual. There’s no doubting that his main strength is attacking, so this system should just see Hunt get forward even more than he already does.

With the strength in depth Wednesday have, Carvalhal is spoiled for choice when choosing his midfield and attacking positions. The versatility of players such as Lee, Bannan and Hooper in particular, only add to his options.

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This is a system I think will be successful for the Owls. Carvalhal used it away at Rotherham last season, and we came away with a 2-0 win. He then used it in midweek against Chesterfield and in the second half against QPR. On all three occasions Wednesday have played with much more fluidity, and created more chances, with players rotating and swapping positions during attacks.

This small tweak could very well be the catalyst to drive the team forward, and help us challenge at the top end of the Championship table.

Discuss this and everything else Wednesday of course, on our forum which you can find :HERE....  

Unread article 15/08/2017 at 20:11

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