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Football Reporting
Football Reporting


Barcelona vs Valladolid: Barcelona’s successful switch to a back three started against Valladolid

Barcelona have seen an upturn in form in 2021, and part of that is due to Ronald Koeman‘s switch, on occasions, to a back three, accompanied by wing backs.

That idea was first tried against Real Valladolid at Estadio Zorrilla at the end of December, with Oscar Mingueza, Clement Lenglet and Ronald Araujo taking to the field.

“The key was playing with three central defenders,” Koeman said after the win.

“We changed the formation to have more security in defence and take advantage of the quality of our full-backs.”

Whether in a 3-4-2-1, 3-4-3 or 3-5-2, it’s a setup that has benefited the Dutchman and his players.

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He again opted for three central defenders in the next game against Eibar, but only managed a draw before reverting to a familiar back four.

Yet, against Sevilla away in LaLiga Santander, Koeman caught Julen Lopetegui with a 3-5-2 which was key to their victory.

Jordi Alba and Sergino Dest had plenty of joy down the sides, and Sevilla simply weren’t able to stop them.

Barcelona have played eight games with three centre-backs, against Valladolid, Eibar, Sevilla twice, Osasuna, PSG, Huesca and Real Sociedad, and has resulted in six wins and two draws.

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