Formation Talk

IN the second half of Plymouth Argyle’s midweek Johnstone’s Paint fixture against Swindon Town...

...manager John Sheridan made a double substitution which affected a change in shape, as well as personnel.

Swindon 3-5-2 formation had caused Argyle problems, but when Argyle made the step to match them, the Pilgrims seemed to stem the previously flowing Robins football.

Fast forward to Saturday, back at Home Park, where Sheridan and his management team decided to adopt the same system for the visit of Portsmouth, to some success.

Argyle started brightly, earning plenty of possession and a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes. Ultimately, they competed well with a strong Pompey side and emerged with a creditable 1-1 draw.

“We made our mind up quite quickly after Tuesday that it was something that might work for us,” said assistant manager Gary Owers.

“We’ve concentrated on that the last couple of days, did a bit of shape yesterday and it sort of fell into place. We felt we had something.

“[3-5-2] some is a thing that disappeared for a few years, but it seems to be coming into the game more.

“We’re trying to win games and we’re looking at things. The manager has shown quite a lot of faith in a number of players, and we just felt it was time to come up with something else.

“There might have been a little bit of luck involved. {Swindon] played a 3-5-2 and we felt we had to match them up. When we did that, it gave us something different. We’ve taken that into the game and I think we played quite well.

“We’ll try and be adaptable. It might suit us because we have quite a few centre-halves, and Durrell [Berry] and Jamie [Reckord] are attacking sorts of full-backs. I don’t see why it shouldn’t work for us.”