Inside Indoor Soccer: Most-used team formations

Inside Indoor Soccer: Most-used team formations

The Western Indoor Soccer League (WISL) debuts this fall / winter in Washington. As they prepare to get rolling is partnering with the league and the Tacoma Soccer Center on “Inside Indoor Soccer,” which will look at the sport at all levels, including playing, coaching and watching. The content will vary from beginner to advanced. Here’s our first Inside Indoor Soccer column. It’s on player formations. Read all columns here.


by John Weinstein

Indoor soccer formations are obviously very different from outdoor soccer formations, because you can only have six players on the field instead of eleven. Of course, in all indoor soccer formations, you have a goalie, but the other five players can assume a variety of roles. This article is about the three most used formations in indoor soccer.

The most classic formation is the 2-3, which means you have two defenders and three forwards. Generally, the center forward stays in the other team’s half in the center of the field. He is the one who should be scoring most of the goals. The two wing forwards should be spending most of their time on the sidelines in the attacking zone, but if there are unmarked men on your side, they should come back and pick them up. The wings have to do a lot of running from your side to theirs and back, so make sure to pick people with good stamina. The defenders should practice man-marking, where they pick a guy to mark and stick with him until he is no longer a threat. This formation works well for most normal teams who have a couple good defenders, a couple good midfielders (who play wing) and a good forward.

Kitsap Pumas top Arlington Aviators 7-4, Feb 8, 2014A variation in the 2-3 formation is the 2-2-1. In the 2-2-1, the forward roams all around the opposition’s half. He doesn’t score as many goals as in a 2-3, because he generally receives the ball from the defence, and then the two midfielders can make runs and receive the ball from him to score. In this formation, the midfielders try to stay right around midfield unless you’re launching an attack, in which case they advance with quick runs and try to score. The defenders play the same role as in a 2-3, and should man mark.

The hardest, and perhaps most effective, formation is the 2-1-2. In this, your two forwards should not be restricted to a side, but rather they should both roam around the opposition’s side. They will get the ball a lot, and should practice good quick passes and shots to try to score. The midfielder should be on your own side, but close to midfield. It is his job to receive the ball from the keeper or defence and dish it up to the forwards. It’s a technically challenging position, since you’re trying to pass from the middle of the field. The defenders and midfielder should practice zone marking when they can, but if the midfielder has gone up on the attack, the defenders can switch to man marking.

Now that you know the basic formations for indoor soccer, you should be all set to play! It’s a great game, so get out there and win some games armed with your new knowledge.

Kitsap Pumas top Arlington Aviators 7-4, Feb 8, 2014



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4 thoughts on “Inside Indoor Soccer: Most-used team formations

  1. Thank you good information. Indoor soccer just like outdoor soccer, we have to have players that understand the formation and not only knowledgeable but exceptional fit.
    Is not as simple as you make it sound.

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