River Styx Rovers – Tactical Analysis

By tdf, November 8, 2015

Hola chaps…

Whilst it remains too early to cement the majority of positions up for grabs, it makes some sense to focus on a formation. To ensure that we are all aware of our duties in the upcoming death battle.

Given our lack of practice, fitness, cohesion and hope, it seems prudent to stick with a basic 4-4-2. It is important to know your position and duties. Whilst fluidity changes as the game progresses, we must retain our shape, above all else defensively.

Key points-

Play to the whistle.

If you have crunched an opponent, leaving them mangled and screaming don’t stop, keep going. Ignore the opposition. The ref is there for good reason and do not be swayed into debating non-decisions whilst play continues.


When defending set-pieces especially, mark a player and keep yourself between our goal and the opponent. And if marking, do not switch off. Pick a man and stick to him like glue, GOAL- SIDE. Get close, not yards away. Close down the space between you so that if the opponent receives the ball, you are there to pounce if not block his path instantly.

Make the first challenge count

It is essential to go in hard with your first challenge for the ball of the game. This sets your stall out. Go in half heartedly and the opponents will register and capitalise. Go in hard and fierce and the opponent may well think twice during your next collision. Or punch you in the face.

Look for space

Make yourselves available to receive a pass. Give your comrades an outlet. Make forward runs into space. Attack the space. If you are being marked, drag your marker away from goal to open up space for others.


Whilst we can roll on roll off during the game, our aim is to set the line-up for each half. However, if you are injured or dying, communicate with Tom, motion to the subs on the side of the field, yet maintain your position until a suitable break in play occurs. By suitable, I mean any time the ball has gone into touch other than when we are defending close to goal or a corner. Ensure that the player to replace you is ready to enter before you even think of leaving the field and your position.


Shout and roar. Let your team mates know where are you. Shout for the ball when you are in space. Shout to alert others to runners invading our defensive zone. Praise and encourage. And if anyone fucks up, as they will, encourage them further, give them a pat on the back and a cheeky wink. Not a clout on the snout.

Cover the defence

All but the front two…should follow and engage marauding opponents as they venture into our half. Use logic. If we are defending a situation where we are defensively outnumbered, throw yourself into the fray, even the balance.

Defend from the top

Make the swine work. Contest every blade of grass. From the strikers and behind, do not allow opponents time and space on the ball. Pressure. Constant pressure.

If in doubt, give it a clout

Especially important for those in defensive positions and circumstances. If you have the ball and no pass is on, smash the ball into touch with venom, as high up the field as possible. Clear the damn thing to safety. Allow us a chance to regroup.

El Capitan

Tom has usurped me as Captain, for damn good reason. For he is fitter, bigger, equally mean, highly experienced and a quality player. After these instructions are shared I will revert to my core duties as part time centre-back ankle mangler. Organise the defence as I see fit, yet will be looking to Tom to lead and direct the team as a whole. As we must all.


CF –

Mathew/Ian/Dan/ Steve

Your job is to lead the line, forage in the final third, pressure the opposing defence, find space, shoot on any sight of goal within reason, move, move, move.

Main duties- Goal scoring, Goal Hanging, Goal Poaching.

Player to study-

Support Striker


Duties- Support the front man. Link the play. Create. Look for runners and play them into goalscoring positions. Shoot on sight.

Player to study…Robby Baggio


Pete, Ian, Dan, Gideon

Duties- run the flank, chase the space, cross to the box, drive into the box, support the strikers in the box, tracks runners entering our own half.

Player to study…



Timmy Vickers.

Duties – Nedved.

Player to study…The Czech Fury




Thomas (el capitan)

Duties – organise the team, crunch opposition attacks, spread the play, drive forward when cover is available. LEAD

Player to study…



Duties – marking, covering, tackling, clearing, hacking, maiming, flaying.

Players to study…



Fullback RB/LB – Jorge, Jakub, Richard.

Duties – Cover the flanks, support the midfield and wingers, defend.

Player to study


GK – Marc

LB – Jorge (James, Richard)

RB- Jakub (James, Richard)

CB – Daniel, Michael (Richard, James)

CM – Tom and Tim

LW – Peter (Dan, Gideon)

RW – Ian (Dan, Gideon)

SS- Leandro (Peter, Tim, Tom)

CF – Matthew (Ian, Dan)

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