Attacking systems  

Long ball
Center channel
Dead ball
Counter attack





Attacking soccer is designed to score goals. And attacking systems must answer one simple question: how are you going to score your goals?

There are six basic answers. Each has advantages (proís) and disadvantages (conís):

         Wing-based attacks (either down one wing or both). Proís: attacks through areas that are weakly defended; exploits speedy wingers; crosses can be very difficult to handle. Conís: attack starts far from goal; relies on good cross AND aggressive and effective strikers in front of goal

         Long ball soccer aimed at one or two target attackers. Proís: leaves midfielders mainly playing defense, so hard to break down; exploits big strong speedy strikers; low immediate risk. Conís: often loses possession; no support for attackers; works poorly against defense playing with a sweeper.

         Center channel attacks, using wall passes and mobility to release players through the middle. Proís: operates close to goal; exploits skilled attackers and midfield; difficult to defend when done right. Conís: operates in most congested area; requires skilled players;  needs very good timing.

         Barca triangle offense, which uses the wings but only to set up deep penetration into the penalty area. Proís: attacks weakly defended areas; does not require cross. Conís: Depends on penetration; very tight timing of passes.

         Dead-ball teams. Heavy focus on free kicks and corners. Proís: teams concentrate on defense most of the time, giving little away. Dead ball attack can be practiced until nearly perfect. Conís: boring, not really good soccer.

         Counter-attack teams. Heavy focus on defense and set attacking plays. Proís: solid defense. Exploits speedy, skilful midfield and forwards. Conís: Depends on opponents pressing forward and leaving gaps at the back.

Most teams use of a combination, but tend to lean on one or at most two of these systems most of the time