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Football Manager 2022 - Patrick Vieira 4-3-3 Possession-Based Tactic

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Football Manager 2022 - Patrick Vieira 4-3-3 Possession-Based Tactic

Let's take a look at how we can emulate the 4-3-3 possession-based tactic by Patrick Vieira in Football Manager 2022.


Patrick Vieira enjoyed a playing career at the very highest level, being a key part of arguably the greatest Arsenal side of all time and the greatest France national side of all time. A truly talented and, above all, intelligent midfielder, to some, it was no surprise he ventured into management after his playing career was over. After a successful start to his managerial career with NYCFC and a mixed spell at Nice, Patrick returned to the Premier League as manager of Crystal Palace at the beginning of the 21/22 season.

While Palace will certainly be content with their standing in the league this season - and some big results against City and Arsenal along the way - it’s the shift in style that will please the Palace faithful. Changing from Hodgson’s reactive counter-attacking football to Vieira’s pro-active and possession-based style was a welcome change at Selhurst Park and appears to be indicative of a long-term vision for the club rather than attempting to stave off relegation every season.

Patrick Vieira's Philosophy


As mentioned above, Vieira prefers a possession-based style at Palace, which requires a technically capable centre backs, and a solid midfield allowing Conor Gallagher the freedom to influence the game in the final third. Gallagher’s emergence since joining on loan from Chelsea, coupled with some astute signings, have taken much of the pressure off Wilf Zaha and Christian Benteke. In both Zaha and Benteke’s cases, this has actually allowed both to flourish as the lighter offensive burden brings out their best.

Defensively, Vieira is very much a part of the counter-pressing era, looking to regain possession quickly when lost in the final third of the pitch. The presence of Kouyate in midfield allows Gallagher to lead the press, knowing he has that stability behind him to protect against quick transitions through the middle.

  

How does this look on FM22?


Football Manager 2022 - Patrick Vieira 4-3-3 Possession-Based Tactic



While this may not look all that different from many other 4-3-3s you’ve seen on FM22, Conor Gallagher’s role is really the one that makes this stand out. His role is listed as a box to box, but the player instructions added make him far more forward-minded than a CM would normally be expected to behave. In practice, this role looks more like a box to box AM than a CM, which suits Gallagher’s real-life role in Vieira’s system. The anchor at the base of midfield perfectly represents Kouyate's shielding of the defence while also largely keeping him out of the build-up play. The carrilero on the left-hand side of midfield provides a balance between these two extremes, linking play beautifully while the BBM seeks advanced positions.

The ball-playing defenders are essential to replicating Vieira’s purposeful build-up play, with the adventurous left-back providing width on that side to compensate for the inside forward ahead of him. The target forward as a lone striker may seem counter-intuitive in a system that doesn’t utilise a long ball, but given the renaissance of Christian Benteke this season - and the crossing from your left-back - it makes sense as the best way to utilise Benteke’s strengths.

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FM Blog: Football Manager 2022 - Patrick Vieira 4-3-3 Possession-Based Tactic
Football Manager 2022 - Patrick Vieira 4-3-3 Possession-Based Tactic
Let's take a look at how we can emulate the 4-3-3 possession-based tactic by Patrick Vieira in Football Manager 2022.
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