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Baloncieri, 1928: How the attack is played

Author: Isaque Argolo | Creation Date: 2021-10-25 18:05:44


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How the attack is played
Adolfo Baloncieri | 1928

How is the attack played?
Here is a problem which will never have a satisfactory solution and will always leave the wider field of discussion open to criticism.
First of all, a good attack must have, in its elements, fast players, lightning fast in knowing how to exploit both the setting of the team's game and any errors of the opposing defenses. A slow player, engaged between forwards practicing the brisk and fast game, can be a hindrance to the entire line.
The irradiation point for the setting of the attack game must always be the center. The most practical and simple means of offense takes place in two stages: the first, which takes the centerattack as its basis, on which the game forcibly converges due to the tendency to keep the ball in the field; in the second the center, having taken possession of the ball, proposes the appropriate movement to the better placed knee brace who will continue the development of the action. Generally the movement is made to the wings, and while the center follows the action, keeping on the same line of knee, the half wings will be brought back up, in a slightly backward position. This, of course, in principle.
In the action that will have to give the point, if the attack center cannot conclude with personal actions, it will ask for the intervention of the wings, which in turn will converge towards the center, replacing the rear half wings.
There are, however, some attack themes proposed and developed exclusively by the central trio, without the participation of the wings. However, this will always happen that the three men are in the vicinity of the penalty area, avoiding, if possible, to widen the game near the goal.
In my opinion, the game razed to the ground is preferable; the game of attack is purely constructive, so that the attacker launched at speed will be able to have greater control over the ball, and at the same time ease of handling in the connection, keeping it on the ground.
Similarly, it is advisable to pass in depth, as the simplest and most profitable. The attacker, having discovered a corridor, will throw his teammate behind the opponent's defense, who will be able to make the immediate shot without having to work the ball.
As for an organic and harmonic attack, I believe the example of Torino F.C. Although it is made up of individual values ​​from different backgrounds, it has managed to blend individual personalities. The game is not centered on one rather than the other, but distributed in equal parts, leaving the best placed partner the merit of making the work done by the entire line concrete in points.
To achieve perfect cohesion, however, it is always necessary that one of the three central men knows how to adapt the personality of his game to that of his companions, systematically imposing it with his authority. Having thus achieved the amalgamation, even if not perfect, of the whole line, the functioning becomes automatic.
Of the foreign players who have left the impression of their own personal game, I will mention the out-of-class Hirzer. However, he did not leave any trace of his style as a legacy, because this, very personal, concentrated all the play of the line on himself, without being able to give it the necessary harmony to adapt it to his style. Hirzer's work was exhausting, and although he was the architect of several victories, he could not hold up for many seasons. Precisely for this reason the exuberant freshness was exhausted to such a degree that Hirzer had to be kept at rest.
One player who exerted the influence of his own style on the attacking line was Orth. When the action had begun with him, it unfolded with great uniformity, bringing the characteristics of the leader into his development.
Of the players who impose the characteristics of the entire line with the personality of their game, another is Petrone. However, unlike Orth, he is more aggressive and more penetrating.
Sometimes it can happen that the attacking game is directly influenced by the support center. And here I return to the part representing Káďa in the Czechoslovakian team. The game moves and unfolds according to his will, on which the connection of the entire attacking line pivots. Káďa has dictated to the generations that will succeed him, the style of his game in the relations with the attack line.
In Italy we had a player who proposed the game with harmonious development to the entire attacking line: Moscardini. But the physique did not allow him to impose his system with sufficient authority.
With the new generations, the tendency towards individualism is being lost to gain cohesion, to the benefit of technical improvement and the collective improvement of our teams.
A large part of the responsibility weighs on the major exponents of Italian football, if this collective improvement is slow to develop in our country. All the clubs should understand how great the task is, which is not limited to winning a simple game, but must serve as an example to young people, who, on Sundays, drink the juice.
The teacher gives lessons: the student copies their movements, dribblings, positioning, and puts them into practice. The more skilled the teacher is in imparting the lesson, the better the intelligent student will be able to take advantage of it, who will be able to combine physical sporting skills with moral and civil ones.
To you, young people!
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