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Teams like Italy, who is known for their impeccable defense play will normally use a 4-5-1 combination in Pro Evolution Soccer against most teams, whereas Spain and Brazil are known to use the more flamboyant 4-3-3 approach. With other teams it is preferable to play 4-4-2. Each combination has its own merit, and it is aptly said that the combination best reflects the strength of the team. With 4-3-3 formation covered in the previous article, this article deals with 2 other popular options: 4-4-2 and 4-5-1.
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Not many teams use the PES2008 4-5-1 combination to their advantage, with the exception of Italy and possibly Greece. The lone striker will have difficulty when facing the whole defensive line of the opposition, thus you have to use your midfielders, especially wingers, to help him score. In this formation, most action is enacted in the midfield, sometimes even in your own penalty area. The defensemen pass the ball around amongst themselves in a bid to pull the opposition forward line towards them. When they come up, use the right flank player to long-pass the ball to the lone striker, who in most cases, should be positioned right in the center.
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This combination is used by most European teams, which adds the power of a strong field with two attackers through either flanks. Now, ideally the game flow should start from either wing, with the left full-back passing the ball to the midfielder on the left wing. Use the midfielder to lob the ball aerially to the right wing center forward or right wing forward. This could take a variation here, with the ball being passed to the center-forward itself.
Now, if the center forward has attacking capabilities, he would surge ahead with the ball. Close to the penalty area, sell a dummy to the opposition defense by holding down the Space key. This would lead your opposition to believe that you would be shooting the ball. Use this opportunity to pass the ball to the other forward on either flank, who many times is unmarked.
One of the simpler ways of playing with this formation is by having a left-orchestrated or a right-orchestrated attack continuing all the way into the midfield and into the forward line. However such a one-dimensional play can only be effective against weaker teams, as stronger teams would be able to spot this rather easily.
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This concludes our overview of main and most useful formations in Pro Evolution Soccer 2008. The choice of formation should entirely depend on the strength of the team you have selected. Ultimately, you would need to be comfortable with the positions of your players. It is very advisable to be familiar with certain formations to be able to adapt several schemes throughout the season, and even in a game.
PES 2008 - Tactical tips
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – An Overview of Formations
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – Formations - Part I: The 4-3-3 Formation
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – Formations - Part II: 4-4-2 and 4-5-1
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – Changing Formations Throughout the Game
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – Defensive Tactics
- PES 2008 Tactical Tips – Playing with Barcelona