FIFA 21: Why you should use the 433(2) formation - Dexerto

FIFA 21: Why you should use the 433(2) formation

Published: 5/Nov/2020 17:57 Updated: 5/Nov/2020 20:38

by Nate Searl


The meta in FIFA 21 has proven to be far more diverse, offering plenty of room for experimentation. Here’s a look at how and why you should use the 4-3-3 (2) formation with maximum depth. 

FIFA 21 has been out for almost a month now, and players are finding new ways to dominate games. While traditional meta formations like 4-2-3-1 and 4-2-2-2 are still popular, there are plenty of other formations seeing play this year.

Air Japes, one of FIFA’s classic content creators, tells us why 4-3-3 (2) with maximum depth is worth trying. Let’s take a look at how to play it.

Setting up 4-3-3 (2) formation with maximum depth

The main selling point for this formation in FIFA 21 is the maximum depth. This means your players will play up the field. Air Japes also sets his defensive style to “press after possession loss” which will help you get the ball back if you blunder. He uses 4 width, balanced offensive style, 7 players in the box, and 2 players for corners and free kicks.

Another key factor in the formation is giving your Striker the False 9 instruction. He explains that this puts a lot of pressure on your Striker to act as both a scorer and a playmaker. Knowing this, you need a high-rated player in that role who can handle the pressures. Air Japes uses Cristiano Ronaldo here.

For his wingers, he uses the cut inside (or Free Roam on the Left Wing) instructions to assist his False 9 Striker with goal scoring. Cut inside will tell the wingers to make runs into the box.

For his defensive instructions, he sets his CDM to stay back while attacking and man mark. In FIFA 21, this will tell your CDM to watch opposing threats and stay back to defend. Since these tactics are so aggressive, it’s important to have at least one extra player stay back.

Playing with the formation

This formation with these tactics and instructions is extremely aggressive. With the depth being so high, your players will always be in a position to attack. If and when you lose the ball, your players will press the opponent to try to get the ball back and go on the counter-attack.

FIFA 21 is all about scoring, and the 4-3-3 (2) with these tactics should help you get plenty of goals. The key to being successful with this formation is being aggressive on defense and winning the ball back. If the opponent gets past you with such high depth, you will likely give up a goal.

If you’re looking to play something a little different and a lot more aggressive, you should give this a try! FIFA 21 is still in its early stages, and there’s plenty of room for experimentation.


5 new formations FIFA 21 needs to add

Published: 13/Sep/2020 17:00

by Joe Craven


We’ve picked five new formations that, while certainly unorthodox, would spice up FIFA 21’s gameplay in a way we’ve not seen from the series for some time. What do you make of the formations we’ve chosen? 

When it comes to new FIFA games and anticipated features, the inclusion of new formations is not particularly high on the list. Some fans have long been asking for completely customizable formations, but this still seems some way off. 

The list of formations, too, has not changed for some time in FIFA. Formations arguably became less important as formation-specific cards were removed from Ultimate Team, but fans still place a lot of stock in how their team lines up in game. 

FIFA 21 Ultimate Team logo
These formations could feature in Ultimate Team, as well as other game modes.

We’ve chosen five formations that we think would make worthy additions to FIFA’s list of formations. Some have been inspired by real life coaches, while others are inspired by the desperation we’ve felt while trailing 2-1 in the 90th minute of an Elite III decider. 

1: 4-3-2-1 (3 CMs, 2 CAMs and 1 ST)

The first formation on our list is inspired by Everton’s Carlo Ancelotti and his apparent affinity for Christmas trees. All jokes aside, we’ve seen Ancelotti bring in three impressive midfielders and not a single wide player yet this season. 

This formation would see a conventional back four, with 3 CMs in front of them. In front of them would be two central CAMs, and then a ST in front of them. 

Attacking centrality would be key for this formation, as well as pacey midfielders to overlap and compensate for the lack of out and out wide men. Whether FIFA 21’s crossing and heading will be as poor as FIFA 20’s remains to be seen, but this pyramid formation is one we want regardless. 

2: 3-5-1-1 (flat midfield five, 1 CF, 1 ST) 

It’s quite a surprise that a 3-5-1-1 formation is not available in all of FIFA. It’s of course similar to the existing 3-5-2, but would feature a flat midfield five rather than 2 CDMs and a CAM. Players can use it in some game modes but, for whatever reason, not in Ultimate Team. 

On either side would be a LM and RM, with a CF and ST just in front. This would, in many ways, be a more conservative three-at-the-back formation. 

A lot of FIFA’s existing three-at-the-back formations leave players exposed defensively, but the tightly packed midfield would make playing through this XI much more difficult for opponents. 

New formations FIFA 21 could use
Aneclotti’s 4-3-2-1 and 3-5-1-1 could work in FIFA 21.

3: 3-3-1-3 (3 CBs, RWB, LWB, CM, CAM, RW, LW, CF) 

Another formation taken from real life, this confusing amalgamation of positions stems from Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa. It is similar to some five-at-the-back formations that currently feature in FIFA, but anyone who’s watched a Bielsa side play knows about his chaotic and attacking style. 

Three CBs are protected by a CM, while wide areas are marshalled by a LWB and RWB. Tradition would dictate this being classed as 5-1-1-3, but the wing-backs in a Bielsa system spend more time up the pitch than they do in their own half. 

In front of this second line of three is one CAM, who bridges the gap to the front three, made up of a RW, LW, and CF. It sounds complex, and that’s because it is. But Marcelo Bielsa’s trademark formation has had more than enough success to warrant an inclusion in FIFA 21.

4: 3-2-3-2 (2 CDMs, 3 CAMs, 2 ST)

We’ve noted previously how a lot of three-at-the-back formations leave players a bit short at the back. Well, this formation accepts that and steers into it. Similar to the 4-2-3-1 narrow formation that FIFA already features, this simply swaps out a defender for a ST, forming a back three in the process. 

It would make users undoubtedly vulnerable to wide attacks, but would give oppositions an absolute nightmare when defending centrally. One for the more competent defenders, we’d wager. Either that, or get ready to concede 5 goals per game. Although, if you’re scoring 6, who really cares?

New formations EA could put in FIFA 21
Marcelo Bielsa’s 3-3-1-3 or a more attacking 3-2-3-2 could also work.

5: 1-1-8 (CB, CM, RW, LW, RF, LF, CAM, CF, 2 STs)

Down in the final minutes of a must-win FUT Champs match? Already thrown caution to the wind and tried Ryan Kent and Wissam Ben Yedder? Then this is the formation for you. 

Needless to say, it’s a bit like football suicide, but if it gets you that last-minute equalizer then it’s all been worth it. We’d love to see this formation as a last-minute roll of the dice, but we’d warn all against starting a match with it. 

If you’ve got the ball then your front 8 has every chance of scoring, but if you don’t then you’re probably going to ship more goals than Chelsea did last season. Needless to say, that’s a lot. 

What do you make of our proposed formations for FIFA 21? What formation have we missed? Be sure to tweet us @UltimateTeamUK on Twitter to let us know, and to keep up with all the latest news, leaks and rumors from the world of FIFA.