A far cry from the stereotypes of young, up and coming managers, Marco Silva prefers a defensive block over the gegenpress. This differing style doesn’t earn him as many plaudits as a Pep Guardiola or a Jürgen Klopp, but certainly does a job.
Marco’s less than illustrious playing career initially followed him into management, beginning at the club he finished at, Estoril Praia in the Portuguese first division. Soon enough though he was making waves and had successful spells at Sporting Lisbon as well as Greek giants Olympiacos before finding himself on the English scene.
After reading the introduction you may be fooled into thinking that the Lisbon native is a second coming of Sam Allardyce, however I can assure you that this is simply not the case. Marco prefers to set up in a 4-2-3-1, with the two playing in the centre requiring high energy and a defensive mindset (Idrissa Gueye and Morgan Schneiderlin?). This is preferred because of Marco’s plan for a fast transition from defence to attack, relying on the midfielders getting up to support the front two (Most likely Cenk Tosun and Gylfi Sigurðsson).
In those games where they may not have the lion’s share of the ball, Silva will drop the side back into almost a 4-5-1, with a solid holding midfielder screening balls to the opposition strikers. The emphasis is on not allowing gaps to form within the midfield, keeping it compact and forcing the opposition to change the way they play. With the right players, the system works perfectly, but Silva needs to ensure the clubs acquisitions match his philosophy or it may not go well for the former Trofense right back.
An issue that Marco Silva could find at Everton is the willingness of the wingers to become a set of wingbacks in defence. It is unlikely that we will see Theo Walcott get back to double up on opposition wide men. This could leave defenders in wide areas overexposed and teams with quality in on the wing such as arch-rivals Liverpool will find it easy to cut them open.
Someone who’ll suit Marco Silva down to the ground is Turkish sharpshooter Cenk Tosun. His game is based all around holding up the ball and bringing the wingers into play, something Marco really values in his number nines. Cenk’s ability in bringing the ball down will be crucial for the Toffees, who finished in an underwhelming 8th place.
This will probably need another look at come the end of the transfer window as Mr Silva tries to finalise his deals and sort out his system ahead of Everton’s push to try and break into the top four.