Sky: Pioli seriously thinking of formation change – Loftus-Cheek’s words fuel the idea

By Oliver Fisher -

AC Milan could change their formation for next season by going back to one previously used by Stefano Pioli, according to a report.

As reported by Sky (via Gianluca Di Marzio’s site PazzaDiFanta), the signing of a player like Ruben Loftus-Cheek and the players linked with the Rossoneri suggest strongly that Pioli thinking about a change of formation.

This would allow each player to perform at their best in their natural position, without moving anyone to different roles where they feel less comfortable.

In yesterday’s training session, images from Sky showed Milan taking the field with a 4-3-3 formation rather than the usual 4-2-3-1 system. This change would mean the elimination of the attacking midfielder in favour of two mezzala-type players.

One of these is Loftus-Cheek, who arrived in earlier in the window from Chelsea. Speaking at his press conference today, the Englishman certainly suggested that he would prefer one of the box-to-box roles.

“In the Chelsea Academy I have always played with a 4-3-3. My best season was with Sarri and we used a 4-3-3 there too. Before coming to Milan, I spoke via Zoom with Pioli to get guarantees on my use. Not in terms of playing time but in terms of position and the role I play best is as a box-to-box,” he said.

Tags AC Milan Stefano Pioli


  1. Now I know why they paid 21 millions and gave him 4 million salary. He’s our new tactician!

    You know, cause Pioli is now a manager and has no time anymore deploying tactics and such.

    But that’s good, I mean look on the bright side, RLC is used sitting on the bench and now he can do plenty of that as our new tactician.

  2. Exactly what i expected regarding the transfers been made & interest in players like Musah and Reijnders. Dry 433 would finally solve or Kessie problems, we were lucky and got away with it last season. Especially if we would be getting a RW like Chukwu or Bakayoko, wingers that don’t like to track back. Our play would be way to risky. Instead creating more reliability in the middle with midfielders that can cover up our attacking wings and Loftus doing what he does best.
    Against teams like Inter, it could be very useful, last seasons we’ve been lacking physicality against them

        1. Theoretically yes but he will have to earn that, a 0 goal player will be naturally met with some suspicion in such a role.

  3. The way just bought Pulisic and still heavily looking for RW players suggests the contrary. If Pioli needs more muscle, he’d just simply deploy RLC in the AMC once in awhile. Something we’ve been seeing since the Kessie’s era.

    1. We will just have to wait and see. On paper I can see how tempting it looks: our current system playing Pulisic as AM – Chukwu, Isaksen, Baka as RW – Loftus (attacking minded player) in double pivot – and lets put Singo instead of Calabria, because you know, attack attack attack! And we’ll have Reijnders that runs like a reindeer covering up everything. For 25mil he will be a steal!
      All jokes aside, I don’t think it would work. If we want to keep our electric Theo-Leao wing, we need change.

      1. On paper 4-3-3 could actually hinder that Theo Leao connection. In 4-3-3 there are Mezzalas who operates wider on the filed. Hence the ‘freedom’ of Theo in going forward and directly linking directly with Leao could be reduced.

  4. Looking at our squad now 433 can make better use for adili & pobega in midfield. We can deploy pulisic as supersub because he can play RW,LW AMF . Trio midfield Reijnders,Bennacer,Yunus are solid and strong with backup pobega,adili,krunic,RLC ( if cannot afford buying yunus ,we can use RLC as starter) . For RW just sign the new hauge ( isaksen ) low cost but still young and have huge potential

  5. In that case we are short of at least two midfielders, especially a regista. RLC, Pobega, Reijnders are all b2b/mezzala players. Bennacer could do it and Krunic was quite a surprise playing in a deep role but another is needed, someone who can hold it down. Someone like Dominguez. So I don’t think we’ll be seeing 433. Too many different characters but non for the most critical role of regista.

  6. I think he’s trying out the alternative formations early so he has an idea of how it can be executed. It’s an option, not a permanent change in the way we’ve been playing for the last 3-4 years. Last year he has issues with players arriving late to test out the 3 at the back. At least this year he’s ahead of the game

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