How do we counter stuffy football?


Well-Known Member
We don't have the midfielders to attack through the middle, with the exception of Arfield.

We tried to play everything out wide and they outnumbered us.


Well-Known Member
What's Peter Crouch doing nowadays? A big bustling centre forward that wins loads of headers. They wouldn't sit so deep if we had a big Dunc in our side.
Aberdeen know we have nobody who can hit a decent shot from 20 yards plus so get the big guys to just sit in the box and choke the game out, with teams like that you either shoot from distance or go round them.

We have no distance shooters so I would have went for Kent and Grezda up front and told them to try and go past players in the box, this increases the chances of getting a penalty and getting a goal from a short pass in the box or a shot by them.

Hindsight is a great thing but.
Think we need to consider different formations. Id go 4-2-3-1. The front 4 effectively being 1 for 1 up against a back 4. Id have the 4 as Middleton...Kent....Grezda and Alfie. 2 strong tackling midfielders behind. Mccrorrie and Jack. Get the ball. Pass to one of these 4 and its on that person to take it on..commit against his and create the extra space. As a defence would you like to play against those 4....would i %^*&...would give me the fear. We can go this way in most games in Spfl.


Well-Known Member
We need better midfielders. Other than Arifeld, none are very good against teams like this. All want to do a simple job rather than show bravery by taking the ball and trying to make things happen and if it doesn't come off, showing the bravery to keep trying.
We have the same problem in the Irish League. Teams come to Windsor Park, stick 10 men behind the ball and we seriously struggle to break it down despite having some good attacking players.

The key seems to be quick build up.
We need a creative midfielder. Closest thing we have at the moment is Arfield.

We can’t be playing 2 defensive mids in Coulibaly and Jack together when you’ve got a team set up to sit in.

We also play the ball too slow at times. Need to be quick in our play and look to take the first touch of the ball forward and not sideways!
When we move it around quickly we can exploit the spaces . Too many times we causualy pss it around and just give the opposition to get back tight in position


Well-Known Member
The "Tin Man" type player just give him the ball and tell him to skin there players make something happen !! Gredza on the left would have been a better option.. hopefully get the left side addressed when barisic is fit.


Well-Known Member
This has been discussed before. Klopp at Liverpool has had similar experiences against bottom Premier clubs at Anfield. His thoughts are to 'lose' the ball in midfield to the opposition, draw them out, then hit them on the counter-attack. We have to accept our reality. Our midfield is not as good as we think. Ejaria was exceptionally slow against Aberdeen and Coulibaly, imo, was not at the races. So, our tactics in those circumstances have to adapt. Hence, practice, practice, practice on counter attacking by proactively giving the ball to the opposition.


Well-Known Member
we are over reliant on creating play from wide areas.

The transition to move the ball wide back in to the middle needs to be slightly quicker and when central we need to be more decisive.

but yes, shooting from distance helps.

Especially the Aberdeen game, the only time lewis made saves or they made blocks was when this happened. Figured it out too little too late.

I don't think our players are very intelligent.


Well-Known Member
higher tempo , be braver , have that option to go long if need be.

if that doesnt work mayeb we just plan to assassinate the opposing team at HT

the count

Well-Known Member
It’s clear we struggle when teams sit in to frustrate us and become ‘smart’ with fouls etc.

Given the tools at our disposal, how do we counter it?

Is it just a case of hoping we get the first goal and making them come out?

Passing back or accross the park only strengthens your opponents weakness, ie skill, you must take the ball to them and go past the first man this makes others go to you to fill the gap this creates space for your teamates and space to pass/move into, this for me is the only way, lumping high balls at man mountain defenders is pointless.


Well-Known Member
Keep our discipline.
Manage the referee.
Defend better,particularly set pieces into our box. Losing the first goal raises the pressure on us.
Quick passing and movement.


Well-Known Member
Wide players who can come inside play with their back to goal, play on the half turn and play a pass to players running on from midfield and full back.

I prefer when our wide players are actually CM's ala Davis, as a wide player in a Rangers shirt typically ends up having to come inside to be involved in the play, so you need more CM bits than winger bits to your game I feel.

A LB who offers the natural shape to a team a LB should.