Football Tactics for Beginners:The False 9

What is The False 9? Pep Guardiola's tenure as Barcelona's head coach has changed the way modern football is being played in many ways. But...
Saiguhan Elancheran
Saiguhan is an ardent fan of Manchester City. He loves tactics and seeks to learn a lot about the same.

Latest Posts

China – The Relationship Between Society and Football and Why the Two Must Adapt to Progress

In 2012, the current President of China, Xi Jinping, stated his desire for the country to set its sights on a World Cup trophy,...

Remembering Arthur Wharton: The First Black Professional Footballer

In an interview from 1888, Arthur Wharton recalled overhearing a conversation between two fellow track competitors some years before. “Who’s he,” one rhetorically asked,...

Analysis of Man City’s 9 league losses or The Importance of Kevin De Bruyne

With debates regarding the PFA Player of the Year vote for the Premier League, I decided to dig deeper and research the Kevin de...

The Jürgen Klopp Pressing system

If a single tactical feature were to be used to define a manager, for Jurgen Klopp, it would certainly be the pressing or the...

  The different methods to Marcelo Bielsa’s madness

The current Leeds United manager and arguably the most influential coach in modern football, Marcelo Bielsa is the subject of this analysis because I’m...

The Tactical Feud of our Times: Klopp vs Guardiola

The end of a 30-year old wait in conquering the first English tier for Liverpool coincided with a visit from their main rivals the...

Tottenham 2: 1 Arsenal- Tactical Analysis

In this analysis, we will be observing the tactics of Mikel Arteta and José Mourinho in their recent Premier League clash. Spurs eventually won...

Football Books

Best Football Analytics Books

We have compiled a list of the best football analytics books for the casual football fan. Football analytics and data science/machine learning in general...

The Best Football Books of 2019

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2020, we have compiled a list of the best...

The Best Football Books of 2018

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2019, we have compiled a list of the best...

5 Books every Soccer fan needs to read before the FIFA World Cup 2018

The FIFA World Cup is just around the corner and it's the perfect time to brush up your history and facts about the World...

Best Soccer Coaching Books

We have compiled a list of the best soccer coaching books which every soccer coach must have in his/her bookshelf. No matter whether you...

Football Tactics For Beginners- The False 10

In recent times the traditional No 10 position has been losing its importance with managers opting for either multi-functional players playing in that role or defensive players being used to mark the opposition’s deep lying playmaker. One recent example is Van Gaal’s use of Marouane Fellaini as the number 10(Read Forward destroyer) rather than a player with more technical prowess.

 What is The False 10?

Theoretically there is not much difference between a false 10 and the inverted winger. In the case of an inverted winger, the primary gameplan for the player is to cut inside onto their stronger foot to shoot or play a through ball, while also creates a channel for the fullback to overlap. Quite often, they are part of a 4-2-3-1 formation and so zone 14(Explained later) is usually occupied as opposed to being vacant for them to run into. In addition, they are generally required to vary their play by playing on the shoulder of the opposition’s full back. High profile examples include Arjen Robben, Alexis Sanchez and Frank Ribery, all of whom started their careers as out and out wingers on their stronger sides. The role of the false no.10 is specifically set up to exploit zone 14.

What is The Zone 14 ?

  • Many football coaches divide the pitch into 18 zones.
  • Using this method, the space in front of the opposition’s penalty area is commonly known as ‘zone 14’.
  • The other crucial attacking areas, i.e the wings and the penalty box are best accessed through zone 14.
  • A player in zone 14 is also closest to the striker but there is an argument to suggest that the final pass to the striker is easier and more efficient coming from the halfspaces i.e the spaces between the wings and the centre, or the wings.

Whom to watch out for?

Since the false 10 is yet to gain more attraction unlike the false 9, the inverted wingers or the deep lying playmaker, it is difficult to ascertain the perfect example for this position. There are a number of players who have made the false 9 a household name in football such as Totti and Messi. Many players such as Eden Hazard, James Rodriguez, Kevin de Bruyne, Philippe Coutinho, Mario Goetze, Mesut Ozil and so on have shown glimpses of the false 10.
James Rodriguez :  After impressing for Colombia at the 2014 World Cup in a typical no.10 position, Real Madrid splashed out €80 million on James. Last season saw him play the same role in a 4231 with Bale to his right, Ronaldo to his left and Benzema up front. And while James enjoyed an excellent debut campaign at the Bernabeu, Bale suffered. Because of the Welshman’s cost, new manager Rafael Benitez has been tasked with getting the best out of Bale, while maintaining the strengths of James and co. Based on the early indications, the following seems the most likely strategy. James will almost certainly start more often than not on the right side of midfield with Bale beginning in the no.10 position. As a result, zone 14 will be vacant for James to move into. It does appear that Benitez will mix and match this season but we could see James in a false no.10 position with regularity throughout the year.
the false 10
Philippe Coutinho : 
 
false 10 coutinho
Coutinho’s heat map in the 5-1 win against Arsenal at Anfield in 2014.
As you can see, the area covered by Coutinho is along the central path, highly concentrating on the wings. Hence, drawing himself into the central zone from the wings and also allowing the full back to overlap. We could see that Coutinho has also been asked to do the defensive duties in that channel, hence, a proven false 10.

“The false-10 (sometimes described as a “central winger”) also shares similar attributes to a false-9, and is often used in a 4-2-3-1 formation. A false-10 is also usually a quick, offensive, technical and creative player, who is apparently playing in deeper role than a false-9 however, usually starting in the attacking midfielder position or occasionally as a winger, as the role is often interpreted by players who naturally play in these positions. The false-10 will often surprise defenders by moving out of position, out wide, onto the wing, creating space for other players to make attacking runs. The false-10 will then advance along the flank and provide deliveries into the box for team-mates. The false-10 can also function alongside a false-9 on occasion, in a 4-3-3 (4-6-0) formation, or in a 4-2-3-1 formation. When other forwards or false-9s draw defenders away from the false-10s, creating space in the middle of the pitch, the false-10 will then also surprise defenders by moving out of position once again, often undertaking offensive dribbling runs forward, or running on to passes from false-9s, leading to goals and assists.”

Conclusion :

Joanthan Wilson even stated,”This year has also seen the advent of the term “false 10″, a coinage that feels a little clumsy.”, in his blog of the 2011 tactical review. It is tough to understand it as of now, but in the near future it has potential to become another popular tactical term to be extensively used on blogs and on twitter.  The basic difference between the traditional number 10 and a false 10 is similar to that of the full back and the winger. One starts in a dangerous position and the other tends to make runs into the dangerous position. Both require different skillsets and different temperament and only time will tell whether any player will make this position as popular as Messi made The False 9.

- Advertisement -
Saiguhan Elancheran
Saiguhan is an ardent fan of Manchester City. He loves tactics and seeks to learn a lot about the same.

Related

Football Tactics for Beginners: The Low Block

What is the low block? The low block is generally referred to a football team's defensive shape without the ball. Generally the low block consists...

Football Tactics for Beginners: Defending Corner Kicks

We are all afraid of it. It is the 90th minute, your team is up by one goal and the opposition is about to...

Football Tactics for Beginners- The Sweeper Keeper: From Lev Yashin to Manuel Neuer

Germany’s Manuel Neuer has been widely credited as one of the finest goal-keepers of his generation, and quite rightly too. The Bayern Munich shot-stopper...

The Diminishing role of the Stopper Center Back in the Premier League

Defending and its place in the modern game has spawned a quagmire of critical debate. Back in 2014, when Gary Neville’s article in the...

The art of the long throw and how to counter it

Since the dawn of time, mankind has yearned to to throw stuff really far. Rocks, spears, shapes in the night club, to be human...

Football Tactics For Beginners-The Christmas Tree Formation

  Football is a result oriented business. Whatever succeeds, earns fame for itself and for its conceiver. And if it captures the imagination of spectators...

Football Tactics for Beginners: Tactical Periodization

What is Tactical Periodization? Tactical Periodization is a coaching methodology which is used to train football players with respect to the tactical context of the...

Football Tactics for Beginners-Compactness

If you have the ball you must make the field as big as possible, and if you don’t have the ball you must make...

Latest Posts

China – The Relationship Between Society and Football and Why the Two Must Adapt to Progress

In 2012, the current President of China, Xi Jinping, stated his desire for the country to set its sights on a World Cup trophy,...

Real Madrid and Barcelona remain the most valuable football clubs

Football is the most popular sport in the world, and so it is understandable that the biggest football clubs will also be some of...

Remembering Arthur Wharton: The First Black Professional Footballer

In an interview from 1888, Arthur Wharton recalled overhearing a conversation between two fellow track competitors some years before. “Who’s he,” one rhetorically asked,...

How will Coutinho fit in at Arsenal: Arteta’s new look 4-2-3-1 formation

English outlet, Express are reporting that Arsenal are considering a loan deal for Barcelona's record signing, Philippe Coutinho. The report indicates that Coutinho might have...

Don't Miss

Forgotten Superstars-Matthias Sammer

Most football fans who consider themselves to be experts will expect to be able to name a long list of recent Ballon D'or winners....

Súper Dépor! The rise and fall of Deportivo La Coruña

At the Start With the exception of a 2nd place finish to Helenio Herrera’s Atlético Madrid in 1948/49, Deportivo La Coruña have historically plied their...

The Football match which started a war

Plenty of football stadiums have statues standing outside of them. There's strange one here and there (Michael Jackson formerly outside Craven Cottage springs to...

Dimples, Kangaroos and Bohemians

One of the main tram routes in Prague is the 22. This goes all the way from Bíla Hora, the site of one of...

A look back at Liverpool’s treble winning 1983/84 season

In the wake of Manchester City’s record-breaking claim to the Premier League, The False 9 will look back at some of the greatest club...

Transfers

How will Coutinho fit in at Arsenal: Arteta’s new look 4-2-3-1 formation

English outlet, Express are reporting that Arsenal are considering a loan deal for Barcelona's record signing, Philippe Coutinho. The report indicates that Coutinho might have...

How will Pjanic fit in at Barcelona? A look at Barcelona’s 4-3-3 formation for next season

As the deal between Barcelona and Juventus regarding the transfers of Arthur Melo and Miralem Pjanic has almost been finalised, let's take a look...

Three best Premier League transfers of all time

The Premier League is famous for its lavish spending on player’s transfers. Top clubs like Liverpool, Manchester City, and Manchester United have been spending...

Where will Kai Havertz play for Chelsea? A look at Lampard’s exciting 4-2-3-1 formation for next season

There have been several rumours surrounding Kai Havertz's transfer to Chelsea and Havertz's current boss, Peter Bosz has indicated that the winger might not...

Man United expected lineup against Sheffield United: Pogba & Bruno to start together for first time

Manchester United salvaged a draw against Tottenham in their first game post the lockdown. Their performance improved after the substitutions of Paul Pogba and...