What formation should Orlando City SC play in 2017?

So with six hours left to run in our latest Orlando City UK poll, it seems the majority of Orlando City SC fans want to see the Lions play a 4-4-2 (Midfield Diamond) formation in 2017.

While we know this is Jason Kreis‘ favoured formation of course, today we’re debating whether our strongest current personnel are best suited to that system, or something different altogether.

4-4-2 (Midfield Diamond)

Orlando City SC - Football tactics and formations

Right now, there is no denying that Orlando City SC boast many experienced central midfield options following Will Johnson‘s signature last month, not to mention Servando Carrasco penning new terms.

In many ways, this is key considering it is heavily anticipated that Jason Kreis will be utilising a midfield diamond in 2017, endorsed by the majority of Lions supporters in turn.

While Carrasco was a favourite of Jason Kreis in the second half of last season, most still believe Cristian Higuita is the better player with the combative Colombian finishing the 2016 campaign strongly with a goal against D.C. United.

Despite struggling in the first half of 2016, Antonio Nocerino steadily displayed his worth last term and you’d have to imagine that both new boy Will Johnson and Matías Pérez García will start given their familiarity with Major League Soccer.

For us, the only problem with utilising the midfield diamond surrounds where Kevin Molino will play? Undoubtedly one of the Lions’ biggest talents, Orlando City SC have reportedly turned down a substantial offer for the Trinidad & Tobago international this off-season – further reiterating his worth and starting prospects.

Reportedly interesting Adrian Heath’s Minnesota United, Molino could play at the head of the diamond but we feel he is better as a wide option on the flanks.


Orlando City SC - Football tactics and formations

In a previous blog post where we predicted how Will Johnson will fit into Orlando City SC‘s strongest starting eleven, we still deemed Adrian Heath‘s favoured 4-2-3-1 formation the best in line with current personnel.

Crucially playing to Kevin Molino‘s strengths in allowing the Trinidadian one-on-one situations with opposition full back’s, we all know that Kaká likes to peel off the left flank too despite being equally adept in the number 10 role.

The best thing about this formation is that this duo, plus Matías Pérez García can all interchange positions behind Cyle Larin without weakening our attacking threat in any way.

In the back line, both Donny Toia and Rafael Ramos are pacy full back’s who enjoy getting forward so for us, this formation still looks the most balanced at present.

However, we accept that Jason Kreis will probably introduce the 4-4-2 (Midfield Diamond) with more personnel changes likely to occur between now and March 5th.


Orlando City SC - Football tactics and formations

As we have seen in the Premier League this season, Antonio Conte’s Chelsea have achieved great things in utilising the Italian’s favoured 3-4-3 formation.

So successful that many other English teams have followed suit, we wonder whether Jason Kreis may be tempted to use this system depending on the occasion in 2017.

In fairness, the 3-4-3 formation requires athletic centre back’s with good recovery pace given they are faced with more one-on-one situations.

With both David Mateos and Seb Hines self-admittedly not the fastest, current Orlando City SC defenders who may fit are Donny ToiaJosé Aja and Tommy Redding although this back three is particularly experimental.

However, such a formation would really suit both Brek Shea and Rafael Ramos who are some of the speediest wide options in all of Major League Soccer.

Ahead of them, Kaká, Kevin Molino and Cyle Larin look well deployed in what is definitely one of the best attacking trio’s in MLS.

What formation should Jason Kreis’ Orlando City SC play in 2017?

Comment below or tweet us at @OrlandoCityUK to have your say!

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