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Conor Coady: Formation helps Wolves outflank rivals

By Rosie Swarbrick | Wolves | Published:

Conor Coady believes Wolves’ current favoured 3-4-3 formation gives them wing-power.

Raul Jimenez of Wolverhampton Wanderers celebrates after scoring a goal to make it 1-1 with Conor Coady of Wolverhampton Wanderers. (AMA/Sam Bagnall)

Wolves started with that formation for the 1-1 draw at Arsenal and Coady believes it helps having two wide men on each flank.

Adama Traore and Diogo Jota took on right and left forward roles, with wing-backs Matt Doherty and Jonny backing them up in midfield at the Emirates.

And after 25 attempts on goal in that game, Coady sees it as an affective option.

Coady said: “At the minute, I think it helps having the two players out on the wing.

“Adama and Doc, Jonny and Jota; I think it works really well with the mobility that they show in the change, in terms of the changing position that they both do and getting the ball out to them.

“It is effective, but we know how to play both systems (the 3-5-2 and 3-4-3).”

Wolves have started with a 3-5-2 formation, but switched to a 3-4-3 shape numerous times in games this season.

They made that switch and fought back in the 1-1 draw at Newcastle, with boss Nuno Espirito Santo deciding to start the way his men left off at St James’ Park against Arsenal.

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Coady, who made his 20th appearance of the season at the Emirates, also sees the shape-shifting as a way to manage workload.

Though as Wolves prepare to welcome Slovan Bratislava in the Europa League on Thursday, he wants to find a winning formula after their seventh league draw.

He said: “I think a lot of it (changing formation) depends on how we adapt in a game and which one suits us in a game.

“We have played them (both) for a long time, we listen to the manager every day.

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“We don’t just work on one system in training, we work on both, knowing that we can flip from one to the other. It is not just changing from game-to-game, we can do it within games.

“Knowing that we have to manage ourselves in terms of the game we have got, this season, the amount and volume of games, we have both formations – but we need to be winning with those formations.”

The shift also allowed midfielder Ruben Neves to push forward at Arsenal. Neves has played a deeper, central role in front of Coady in that 3-5-2.

But the Portuguese was given an attacking licence in a midfield two alongside Joao Moutinho on Saturday.

And Coady says the ability to shift shows the intelligence of the 22-year-old midfielder.

He said: “Ruben is a clever footballer, he knows those two roles inside out,

“You have seen him play as as sitting midfielder when he drops but also he knows when to push push forward when we play two midfielders in a 3-4-3.

“He is clever and he knows his role.”

Rosie Swarbrick

By Rosie Swarbrick
@rosieswarb

Wolves correspondent for the Express & Star.

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