Tactically, Madrid Should Look to the Past to Fulfill Potential

Paul KContributor IAugust 4, 2009

MADRID, SPAIN - JULY 26:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid warms up before his debut home match at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium during the Peace Cup match between Real Madrid and Al-Ittihad on July 26, 2009 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

With the addition of yet another midfielder, Real Madrid has ignored their problems in the back four yet again. Still, President Florentino Pérez has targeted Bayern Munich's talisman winger Franck Ribery.

Real Madrid will soon have an embarrassment of riches unlike any single team since Ferenc Puskas' Honved or Pele's Brazil.

Those two teams were stacked with talent all over the pitch, and part of what made those teams so amazing was the improper match-ups on the offensive ends that they made due to their formations. Notably, Honved played a modified W-W while Brazil lined up in a 4-2-4.

Brazil at the time had Pele, Garrincha, and Vava as their stars. Their formation allowed these players to shine and showcase their offensive brilliance.

Sure, Honved at the time featured Puskas, Sandor Kocsis, and Jozsef Bozsik who were world-class at the time. However it was the implementation of the W-W formation that allowed for overwhelming offensive strength.

Proponents of footballing history may remember the W-W as the basis for the formation which Hungary used to defeat England 6-3 on 25 November 1953. That match was the first time any continental side had beaten England in Britain.

Simply put, the W-W is an offensive minded 3-2-1-4, which on paper looks like a 4-2-4 that allows for creativity on the wings and the center of the pitch due to the spacing caused by the openings in the midfield. Real Madrid definitely have the wing play to succeed.

However more importantly, this formation would allow Madrid to field their best players in their most natural positions. It would allow Kaka to dominate the center by forcing players to cover the wings where Ronaldo, Robben, and Ramos constantly supply runs.

Here is a sample line-up:


-------------Karem Benzema----Gonzalo Higuain----------

Cristiano Ronaldo----------------------------Arjen Robben


-------------Xavi Alonso----------------------------------

----------------------------------------------Sergio Ramos

Marcelo-------Pepe----------Raúl Albiol--------------------

-------------------------Iker Casillas----------------------


If Franck Ribéry signs this summer, he would replace Robben in this line-up.


Only by abandoning the current thinking on how to line up a squad, will this team fully benefit from the collection of talent. By remaining in the 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 that is common in the modern game, then Real will be forced to field a lesser line up in important matches.

Sure, goals will be conceded. However what team in the world could defend all of their attacking options when allowed the proper creative freedom?

The modern formations would cause Ronaldo or Kaka to change the game they have been majorly successful with at Manchester United and AC Milan respectively. The W-W endorses them to be comfortable.