Composite Styles

Contents

A composite style is a particular composite of two or more component styles.

Composite styles formed by compositing core styles and attacking styles include:

  • Pass and move football – a composite of attacking football and short plays.
  • Possession football – a composite of defensive football and short plays.

Composite styles formed by compositing core styles and defensive styles include:

  • Cautious attacking football – a composite of attacking football and containment.
  • Aggressive defensive football – a composite of defensive football and aggressive pressing.
  • Parking-the-bus football – a composite of defensive football and containment.

Composite styles formed by compositing the above include:

  • Urgent football – a composite of direct attacking football and high pressure football. Typically only used as a match strategy due to its extremely high overall tactical risk level.
  • Cautious direct attacking football – a composite of direct attacking football and cautious attacking football.
  • High pressure pass and move football – a composite of pass and move football and high pressure football.
  • Cautious pass and move football – a composite of pass and move football and cautious attacking football.
  • Aggressive long ball football – a composite of long ball football and aggressive defensive football.
  • Parking-the-bus long ball football – a composite of long ball football and parking-the-bus football.
  • Aggressive possession football – a composite of possession football and aggressive defensive football.
  • Anti-football – a composite of possession football and parking-the-bus football. Typically only used as a match strategy due to its extremely low overall tactical risk level.

Each of the composite styles in the two former groups is summarised below, with details of the following (derived from the equivalent information for the composited component styles):

  • Typical primary style methodscomplementary playing methods of the key primary style methods that are typically considered to be fundamentally necessary for the key primary style methods to be effective and are therefore typically also used as primary style methods. Contrasting pairs of playing methods, which occur due to contrasts in the composited component styles, are also included and are typically used according to the extent to which each key primary style method is used.
  • Common secondary style methods – additional complementary playing methods of the key primary style methods that are typically considered to not be fundamentally necessary for the key primary style methods to be effective but are commonly added as secondary style methods. Contrasting pairs of playing methods are again included and may be used to complement a particular key primary style method to a greater extent, to increase the focus on a particular tactical objective or to balance tactical risk.
  • Tactical risk – details of the composite style’s overall level of tactical risk as determined by the key and typical primary style methods, along with details of how tactical risk can be balanced.

As stated above, these details are derived from the equivalent information given for the composited component styles. Player suitability can be derived similarly. Details for the composite styles in the latter group can also be derived similarly.

The extent to which it is appropriate for a team to implement each of the primary and secondary style methods detailed below depends on player suitability, the overall tactical risk level desired by the team’s manager and the preferences of the team’s manager.

Direct Attacking Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • High risk mentality
  • Long passes

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Wide positioning
  • High tempo play
  • Early engagement
  • High line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Direct dribbles
  • Crosses
  • Crosses from deep
  • Speculative shots
  • Stepping up
  • Tight marking
  • Tackling
  • Roaming movement; runs into channels; drifting movement / disciplined movement
  • Lateral dribbles / disciplined dribbles
  • Risky passes / safe passes
  • Creative freedom / tactical discipline

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: very high – focuses more on penetrating space.

Typical overall defensive risk level: high – focuses more on restricting space.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of disciplined movement, disciplined dribbles, safe passes or tactical discipline, or by compositing direct attacking football with the containment defensive style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

Typical Number-Ten

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • More frequent tactical reorganisation – due to the use of higher risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Moderate – due to the typical use of a mixture of direct and overlapping partnerships (slightly quicker/slower if players have good/poor mobility – more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Consolidating possession is typically used to a greater extent in the attacking phase due to the typical use of a more progressive passing range system. Consolidating possession is particularly useful due to a typically high overall attacking risk level.

However, in the attacking transition phase counter attacking is typically used to a moderate extent due to a moderate speed of attacking transition. In addition, a high level of attacking pressure and defensive pressure can cause the opposition team to be more tactically disorganised, which can be taken advantage of by using breaks (and counter attacking).

Pass and Move Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • High risk mentality
  • Short passes

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Early engagement
  • High line
  • Wide positioning / narrow positioning
  • High tempo play / low tempo play

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Roaming movement; runs into channels; drifting movement
  • Lateral dribbles
  • Risky passes
  • Creative freedom
  • Stepping up
  • Tight marking
  • Tackling
  • Direct dribbles / refraining from dribbles
  • Crosses / refraining from crosses
  • Crosses from deep / crosses from byline
  • Speculative shots / refraining from shots

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: moderate – balances penetrating space with keeping possession to some extent.

Typical overall defensive risk level: high – focuses more on restricting space.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of refraining from dribbles, refraining from crosses, crosses from byline or refraining from shots, or by compositing pass and move football with the containment defensive style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Overlapping partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More progressive

Typical Number-Ten

  • Technical number-ten

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • More frequent tactical reorganisation – due to the use of higher risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Slow – due to the typical use of more overlapping partnerships, particularly if players have poor mobility (however, more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Consolidating possession is typically used to a greater extent (in both the attacking phase and the attacking transition phase) due to the typical use of a more progressive passing range system and a typically slow attacking transition.

However, a high level of attacking and defensive pressure can cause the opposition team to be more tactically disorganised, which can be taken advantage of by using breaks (and counter attacking).

Long Ball Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • Low risk mentality
  • Long passes

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Delayed engagement
  • Deep line
  • Wide positioning / narrow positioning
  • High tempo play / low tempo play

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Disciplined movement
  • Disciplined dribbles
  • Safe passes
  • Tactical discipline
  • Stepping back
  • Loose marking
  • Holding off
  • Direct dribbles / refraining from dribbles
  • Crosses / refraining from crosses
  • Crosses from deep / crosses from byline
  • Speculative shots / refraining from shots

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: moderate – balances keeping possession, retaining solidity and retaining compactness with penetrating space to some extent.

Typical overall defensive risk level: low – focuses more on protecting space and retaining compactness.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of direct dribbles, crosses, crosses from deep or speculative shots, or by compositing long ball football with the aggressive pressing defensive style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Direct partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

Typical Number-Ten

  • Target-man

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • Less frequent tactical reorganisation – due to the use of lower risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Quick – due to the typical use of more direct partnerships, particularly if players have good mobility.

Breaks (and counter attacking) are typically used to a greater extent due to the typical use of a more direct passing range system and a typically quick attacking transition.

The opposition team typically moves forward into deeper areas in the attacking phases and the defensive phases, leaving available space behind opposition team players in both the attacking phase and the attacking transition phase that can be exploited by using breaks (and counter attacking).

Possession Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • Low risk mentality
  • Short passes

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Narrow positioning
  • Low tempo play
  • Delayed engagement
  • Deep line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Refraining from dribbles
  • Refraining from crosses
  • Crosses from byline
  • Refraining from shots
  • Stepping back
  • Loose marking
  • Holding off
  • Roaming movement; runs into channels; drifting movement / disciplined movement
  • Lateral dribbles / disciplined dribbles
  • Risky passes / safe passes
  • Creative freedom / tactical discipline

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: very low – focuses more on keeping possession, retaining solidity and retaining compactness.

Typical overall defensive risk level: low – focuses more on protecting space and retaining compactness.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of roaming movement, runs into channels, drifting movement, lateral dribbles, risky passes or creative freedom, or by compositing possession football with the aggressive pressing defensive style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • A mixture of direct partnerships and overlapping partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More direct

Typical Number-Ten

  • Technical number-ten or target-man

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • Less frequent tactical reorganisation – due to the use of lower risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Moderate – due to the typical use of a mixture of direct and overlapping partnerships (slightly quicker/slower if players have good/poor mobility – more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Breaks are typically used to a greater extent in the attacking phase due to the typical use of a more direct passing range system. Breaks are particularly useful due to a typically low overall attacking risk level.

The opposition team typically moves forward into deeper areas in the attacking phases and the defensive phases, leaving available space behind opposition team players in both the attacking phase and the attacking transition phase that can be exploited by using breaks (and counter attacking).

However, in the attacking transition phase consolidating possession is typically used to a moderate extent due to a moderate speed of attacking transition.

High Pressure Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • High risk mentality
  • Closing down

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Wide positioning
  • High tempo play
  • Early engagement
  • High line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Roaming movement; runs into channels; drifting movement
  • Direct dribbles
  • Lateral dribbles
  • Risky passes
  • Crosses
  • Crosses from deep
  • Speculative shots
  • Creative freedom
  • Stepping up
  • Tight marking
  • Tackling

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: high – focuses more on penetrating space.

Typical overall defensive risk level: very high – focuses more on restricting space.

High pressure football involves taking on a very high overall level of tactical risk by focusing more on restricting space in particular, as well as on penetrating space.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent by compositing high pressure football with the short plays attacking style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Overlapping partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More progressive

Typical Number-Ten

  • Technical number-ten

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • More frequent tactical reorganisation (especially defensive reorganisation) – due to the use of higher risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Slow – due to the typical use of more overlapping partnerships (slightly quicker/slower if players have good/poor mobility – more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Consolidating possession is typically used to a greater extent (in both the attacking phase and the attacking transition phase) due to the typical use of a more progressive passing range system and a typically slow attacking transition. Consolidating possession is particularly useful due to a typically high overall attacking risk level.

However, a high level of attacking pressure and a very high level of defensive pressure can cause the opposition team to be more tactically disorganised, which can be taken advantage of by using breaks (counter attacking in particular).

Cautious Attacking Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • High risk mentality
  • Sitting off

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Wide positioning
  • High tempo play
  • Early engagement / delayed engagement
  • High line / deep line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Roaming movement; runs into channels; drifting movement
  • Direct dribbles
  • Lateral dribbles
  • Risky passes
  • Crosses
  • Crosses from deep
  • Speculative shots
  • Creative freedom
  • Stepping up / stepping back
  • Tight marking / loose marking
  • Tackling / holding off

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: high – focuses more on penetrating space.

Typical overall defensive risk level: moderate – balances restricting space with protecting space and retaining compactness to some extent.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of a deep line, stepping back or holding off, or by compositing cautious attacking football with the short plays attacking style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Overlapping partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More progressive

Typical Number-Ten

  • Technical number-ten

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • More frequent attacking reorganisation – due to the use of higher risk attacking methods that apply player movement.
  • Moderately frequent defensive reorganisation – depending on the use of higher/lower risk defensive methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Slow – due to the typical use of more overlapping partnerships, particularly if players have poor mobility (however, more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Consolidating possession is typically used to a greater extent (in both the attacking phase and the attacking transition phase) due to the typical use of a more progressive passing range system and a typically slow attacking transition. Consolidating possession is particularly useful due to a typically high overall attacking risk level.

However, a high level of attacking pressure can cause the opposition team to be more tactically disorganised, which can be taken advantage of by using breaks in the attacking phase.

In addition, the opposition team typically moves forward into deeper areas in the defensive phases, leaving available space behind opposition team players in the attacking transition phase that can be exploited by counter attacking.

Aggressive Defensive Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • Low risk mentality
  • Closing down

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Narrow positioning
  • Low tempo play
  • Early engagement / delayed engagement
  • High line / deep line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Disciplined movement
  • Refraining from dribbles
  • Disciplined dribbles
  • Safe passes
  • Refraining from crosses
  • Crosses from byline
  • Refraining from shots
  • Tactical discipline
  • Stepping up / stepping back
  • Tight marking / loose marking
  • Tackling / holding off

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: low – focuses more on keeping possession, retaining solidity and retaining compactness.

Typical overall defensive risk level: moderate – balances protecting space and retaining compactness with restricting space to some extent.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent with the use of a high line, stepping up or tackling, or by compositing aggressive defensive football with the direct plays attacking style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Direct partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More direct

Typical Number-Ten

  • Target-man

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • Less frequent attacking reorganisation – due to the use of lower risk attacking methods that apply player movement.
  • Moderately frequent defensive reorganisation – depending on the use of higher/lower risk defensive methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Quick – due to the typical use of more direct partnerships, particularly if players have good mobility.

Breaks (and counter attacking) are typically used to a greater extent due to the typical use of a more direct passing range system and a typically quick attacking transition. Breaks are particularly useful due to a typically low overall attacking risk level.

The opposition team typically moves forward into deeper areas in the attacking phases, leaving available space behind opposition team players in the attacking phase that can be exploited by using breaks.

In addition, a high level of defensive pressure can cause the opposition team to be more tactically disorganised, which can be taken advantage of by counter attacking.

Parking-The-Bus Football

Key Primary Style Methods

  • Low risk mentality
  • Sitting off

Typical Primary Style Methods

  • Narrow positioning
  • Low tempo play
  • Delayed engagement
  • Deep line

Common Secondary Style Methods

  • Disciplined movement
  • Refraining from dribbles
  • Disciplined dribbles
  • Safe passes
  • Refraining from crosses
  • Crosses from byline
  • Refraining from shots
  • Tactical discipline
  • Stepping back
  • Loose marking
  • Holding off

Tactical Risk

Typical overall attacking risk level: low – focuses more on keeping possession, retaining solidity and retaining compactness.

Typical overall defensive risk level: very low – focuses more on protecting space and retaining compactness.

Tactical risk can be balanced to some extent by compositing parking-the-bus football with the direct plays attacking style.

Typical Forward Movement Partnerships

  • Direct partnerships

Typical Passing Range System

  • More direct

Typical Number-Ten

  • Target-man

Tactical Organisation

Tactical reorganisation frequency typically required:

  • Less frequent tactical reorganisation (especially defensive reorganisation) – due to the use of lower risk playing methods that apply player movement.

Typical speed of tactical transition:

  • Quick – due to the typical use of more direct partnerships (slightly quicker/slower if players have good/poor mobility – more advanced players who have good mobility may be used to enable more effective counter attacking).

Breaks (and counter attacking) are typically used to a greater extent due to the typical use of a more direct passing range system and a typically quick attacking transition. Breaks are particularly useful due to a typically low overall attacking risk level.

The opposition team typically moves forward into deeper areas in the attacking phases and and even more so in the defensive phases, leaving available space behind opposition team players in both the attacking phase and, to an even greater extent, the attacking transition phase that can be exploited by using breaks (counter attacking in particular).