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Football Manager 2022 Steven Gerrard 4-3-3 Tactic | FM22

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Football Manager 2022 Steven Gerrard 4-3-3 Tactic | FM22

In this Football Manager 2022 tactic guide, we will talk about Steven Gerrard's tactic and how to emulate it on FM22.


As a player, Steven Gerrard needed no introduction. One of England’s finest ever midfielders, Gerrard spent most of his playing career with Liverpool, providing the reds with some of their most memorable occasions in their decorated history. After his playing career was over, it was only fitting that Gerrard would return to Anfield to join the coaching staff before getting his first managerial job at Rangers. Taking over from Pedro Caixinha (following a short spell under caretaker Graeme Murty) was no easy feat, and while the squad had some talented players, much work was needed to close the gap to Celtic. After three seasons at Ibrox, Gerrard lifted the Scottish Premiership with Rangers to much acclaim and reports of a return to English football.

Eventually, Aston Villa brought Gerrard back down south, paying £4m compensation to allow him to succeed Dean Smith. Villa’s transformation under Gerrard has been superb, going from 2 points clear of the relegation places and struggling to deal with the sale of Jack Grealish, to 9th in the table and with every reason to be positive for next season. While Gerrard’s path through management so far has yielded only one trophy, the improvement he’s brought to both Rangers and Aston Villa cannot be ignored. In particular, Rangers’ antics in Europe under Gerrard deserve plenty of praise, as Gerrard showed his side were able to mix it with some of the bigger sides from the continent on a regular basis.

Steven Gerrards's Philosophy


Mainly looking at his time at Rangers, Gerrard’s preference is for an attacking 4-3-3, with overlapping full-backs and wide men who prefer to drift inside. So far, nothing to get too excited about, as Liverpool’s influence on the development of this system is obvious. It's in the centre midfield where this system gets interesting. Due to the half-spaces being occupied by the wingers and the width provided by the fullbacks, that doesn’t leave much-attacking room for your centre midfield. Their primary job is protecting the wide spaces in transition, shuttling laterally to provide cover for the full-backs and a passing option while in possession.

Speaking of pressing, of course, a manager who cut his teeth under Klopp uses a high press. Defensive solidity through the middle of the park is essential, as it is their rigid defensive shape that provided the basis for the Rangers’ impressive results in Europe. These philosophies have also been evident at Villa and have been a large part of the reason for moving up the table at the rate they have.

READ ALSO: Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool Gegenpress Tactic for FM22    

How does this look on FM22?


Football Manager 2022 Steven Gerrard 4-3-3 Tactic | FM22


Perhaps controversially, we won’t be using wingers for this formation. I find a more central position for the AMs to be more representative of their actual movements, particularly in Gerrard’s final half-season at Rangers. In possession, this creates more space for the fullbacks to attack. Out of possession, this also promotes the central stability, which supports the front three’s attacking movement. Twin carrileros in centre midfield provide the necessary wide cover, though one can be changed to a mezzala on support for games where you’re expected to win comfortably.

In terms of opposition instructions, it’s important for opposition full backs to be pressed. While we are largely focused on securing the central areas, the natural positioning of this shape ensures the full backs have their passing options cut off, and this isolation makes them vulnerable. Pressing the full backs is largely carried out by your CMs and AMs, while your pressing forward’s main job is to cut off the passing lanes to opposition centre backs. Your line of engagement being a little lower than expected makes sure this press mainly happens when full backs start to attack, rather than in the harmless space in their own half.

And that’s it! Steven Gerrard’s rise to prominence as a tactically astute manager has been fascinating to follow, and I’m very excited to see how he can transform Villa in the future. I hope you enjoy using this tactic, and can replicate Gerrard’s successes so far in his short career.

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FM Blog: Football Manager 2022 Steven Gerrard 4-3-3 Tactic | FM22
Football Manager 2022 Steven Gerrard 4-3-3 Tactic | FM22
In this Football Manager 2022 tactic guide, we will talk about Steven Gerrard's tactic and how to emulate it on FM22.
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