Strikerless System The Way Forward For Ligue 1 Side Saint-Etienne?

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A tactical switch by Christophe Galtier was instrumental in ASSE’s victory over Lorient.

Saint-Etienne coach Christophe Galtier raised a few eyebrows against Lorient when, with his side drawing 0-0, he replaced striker Melvut Erding.

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Netherlands international striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel had been warming up on the touchline, and many fans in attendance might have expected either he or forward Kevin Monnet-Paquet to have entered when Erding’s number was held up.

However, instead, Galtier opted to throw Yohan Mollo into the mix, leaving the Greens without a recognised forward.

The switch worked a treat as, without a focal point, the ASSE forwards became more fluid in their movement. This distracted and ultimately disorganised Lorient’s backline and it was Mollo who broke the deadlock with a deflected long-range effort [see vid below].

Max-Alain Gradel later added a second as Lorient searched for an equaliser, following fine work from Franco-Algerian Romain Hamouma. Indeed, interaction between the two wideman characterised Saint-Etienne’s play after Erding’s removal.

Could this tactic be the new way forward for Saint-Etienne as they seek to secure European qualification?

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