Hello, today we are going to be breaking down my latest creation: the famous Johan Cruyff 3-4-3 Diamond Tactic, which I have looked to replicate in Football Manager 2022.
Johan Cruyff once said ” I much prefer to win 5-4 than 1-0″ this shows what his game plan was like, he did not focus so much on the defensive side of the game. Instead he would do his best to outscore teams with also the intention of conceding goals and he was fine by this.
So a little history lesson for you all in the 80’s and 90’s the 4-4-2 was quite a frequently used formation, a lot of the top teams used it and this is where this tactic got created. Johan Cruyff’s 3-4-3 diamond tactic was born to counter the traditional 4-4-2, and what happened next shocked world football!
He created a monster with this tactic going on to win four back to back La Liga titles and also one European Cup.
How Does The 3-4-3 Diamond Work On The Pitch?
So with this tactic you set up with a back 3, two wide centre backs so you are not exposed to wide areas on the pitch and also one ball playing defender who stays in the centre. Moving onto the 4 players in the midfield which consists of a Ball winning midfielder, Box to box, Centre mid and an Attacking Midfielder.
This is honestly the perfect balance of midfielders, the Ball winning midfielder sweeps up any lose balls and protects that back 4. Having the box to box player is crucial within this tactic as it provides a player who will not only keep that 3 safe but can also contribute going forward. As for the centre mid despite the attacking play maker he is the most attacking midfielder within this tactic, despite being allowed to go forward he also has his defensive duties.
And that brings us to the attacking midfielder, who is playing on the support role because although he does have that license to roam he also has to help when we are defending.
That leaves us with the Two Inverted Wingers and also the attacking forward, these are the key players in the team as mentioned above the attacking side of the game is the main focus here. These players will be creating and hopefully converting tons of chances on goal. Both Wingers are on the support role as they will track back if needed, but when you are in possession they are purely focused on the attack.
They are told to stay wider with the ball as this gives us some width within the formation, and they are also told to cut inside with the ball resulting in both wingers scoring quite a few goals each. As for the striker he is by far the most selfish player on the team as he should be, being told to stay forward and to take more risks and shoot more often.
Testing This Tactic
So it felt right to test this system with the teams he managed resulting in us testing with Barcelona and of course Ajax.
A dominant season winning the league title, Winning the Beker and also the Cruyff shield. But the main take from this is the 118 goals scored ranking us best in the league. We also ended up being the best team for goals conceded showing this formation is more than capable of defending too.
We then tested with Barcelona another one of Johan’s teams. We managed to win the league title, the Copa del Rey and also the Supercopa. But again the part I want you to take from this is the amazing 124 goals scored. We also ended up being the best defensive team in the league too, which is an achievement in this league considering the likes of Atletico Madrid and Villarreal are in here.
If you wish to test this tactic out feel free to do so by downloading it here:
WATCH MY TACTICAL BREAKDOWN FOR FURTHER INFORMATION!
I do also have a very detailed breaking down every aspect of my interpretation of Johan Cruyff’s 3-4-3 Diamond tactic. So, if you would like to learn more about how this tactic plays out feel free to give it a watch. I hope you have as much fun as I did using this tactic!
Thank you for taking the time to read through this tactic, and a massive shout out to Passion4FM for allowing me to post this!