The Enalysis: FIFA setup that makes Jamie so dangerous
E-League analyst Eleftherios Kordabalos breaks down FUTWIZ Jamie's set ups that have made him such a difficult opponent face in the E-League.
ROUND 3 WRAP: Melbourne City's derby delight, Sydney FC surge
Two of the E-Leagues biggest rivals, FUTWIZ Jamie and Cripsy, had their war of words decided on the pitch when they faced off in Round 3.
As the current meta dictates, FIFA players defend using their defensive midfielders, wingers or full backs. This allows centre backs to hold their shape and makes it incredibly difficult for opposing attackers to breakthrough for goal opportunities.
Across Round 1 and Round 2, Jamie showed a proclivity to press the ball on the edge of his box with his centre backs. It's a tactic that is incredibly hard to pull off as it can leave you exposed by quick passing.
However, when it works, it allows counter attacks to be easily dealt with.
To enable this style of play, Jamie set up his defence in custom tactics as narrow as-can-be to stop the counter-attacking play style seen so often in FUT Champs and the E-League.
The idea is to force the opposing player to work the ball wide, so that when they do try to play the ball into the congested box, Jamie is ready to intercept a pass or tackle quickly and hit you on the break.
So what if a player manipulates Jamie's narrow set up by playing a cross from the edge of the box rather than from the byline?
Realising how impenetrable Jamie’s defence is through the middle of the park, StrawHat Camels notices his winger in a one-on-one situation with Jamie’s fullback and opted to play a cross to his opposing flank. It resulted in a late equaliser.
The first goal of Brisbane Roar vs Adelaide United came in a similar fashion. Opening the match, Brisbane Roar utilised a 4-3-3(2) with both wingers set to ‘Stay Wide’ and the full-backs to ‘Always Overlap’, which lended them acres of space due to Jamie’s crowded setup. Furthermore, Vieira was instructed to ‘Make Runs Into The Box’.
Working the ball wide to the edge of the box, Jamie was forced to react as Cripsy had a numbers advantage; in turn exposing his centre backs. Additionally, Vieira made a surging late run into the six yard area, and pulled the defence of Jamie deeper than where it would usually sit. Seeing this, Cripsy quickly worked the ball back to Gullit who turned in space to finished into the left corner.
Minutes later, Cripsy found himself in a similar position to the first goal, but this time Jamie handled it much better. Rather than dragging his whole team wide, he pressed with only his full back and wide midfielder. Like a true professional, he learned on-the-fly and adapted his playstyle to match his opponent.
Playing so heavily to a particular side of the pitch leaves you exposed on the other flank. Jamie’s preferred 4-2-3-1(2) formation took advantage of this weakness by utilising the pace of Cristiano Ronaldo, Thierry Henry and Ronaldo Nazario. Immediately after winning the ball back, De Gea released Ronaldo, who ran into space and eventually played a through ball to Henry to cut it back to Ronaldo to finish comfortably.
Jamie found a wonderful balance in his setup. Attacking him with width leaves you exposed to counters from the opposite flank and getting at him narrowly requires inch perfect and quick passing. Anyone playing against FUTWIZ Jamie had better make the most of their chances!
FUTWIZ Jamie would go on to win the match 2-1, giving him all the bragging rights.
Watch E-League Round 4 on Thursday night on the E-League Australia Twitch channel.