Friday, 19 Apr 2024

Dream League Soccer 2023: Mastering Formations and Tactics

Video best formation in dls 23

In the vast world of mobile football games, Dream League Soccer (DLS) stands out as a unique franchise. Developed by First Touch Studios, DLS places a strong emphasis on individual player control, thereby giving formations and tactics a different impact compared to other soccer games.

Formations in DLS act as suggestions or templates, as players have the ability to control any player on the field. This flexibility may seem like a downside, but it actually provides players with the freedom to adapt formations according to their preferences and playing style.

To help you understand the best formations in Dream League Soccer 2023 and how to use them effectively, we have created this comprehensive guide. We will explore the pros and cons of each formation, the playstyles they support, and provide tips for success.

Applicable Playstyles in Dream League Soccer 2023

Before diving into specific formations, it’s important to understand the different playstyles you can implement in Dream League Soccer 2023. These playstyles vary in complexity and require a good understanding of the game mechanics. Here are some notable playstyles:

Park the Bus: A defensive playstyle focused on ball retention among midfielders and defenders to protect a lead and keep low-scoring matches.

Route One: An aggressive playstyle that relies on long ball passes and through balls to catch the opposition off-guard and create fast goal-scoring opportunities.

Wing Play: An attacking playstyle that relies on wingers to deliver the ball upfield instead of relying on midfielders. Wingers are expected to keep the ball on their side of the field and make diagonal passes or swoop inside the box.

Control Possession: A fundamental football tactic that emphasizes equal preference on passing upfield, downfield, or cross-field. It relies on player positioning and aims to create openings rather than mismatches.

Tiki-Taka: A playstyle characterized by multiple short passes, with a preference for direct passes instead of long balls or crosses. Tiki-Taka relies on player movement and quick passing to create scoring opportunities.

Gegenpress: An aggressive playstyle that engages ball handlers to commit mistakes and seeks to shorten the possession time of the opposing team.

In Dream League Soccer 2023, you have the freedom to implement multiple playstyles within a formation. Each formation has its own offensive and defensive characteristics, so let’s dive into the best formations for different playstyles.

Easy Formations


The 4-4-2 formation is a versatile and well-rounded formation that suits beginners and experienced players alike. With a balanced midfield and defense, it provides ample space and passing options to create attacking opportunities. It can accommodate any playstyle, making it a perfect starting point for beginners.

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  • Balanced player distribution, allowing for attacks from either side.
  • Beginner-friendly and ideal for players with lower-level teams.
  • Effectiveness remains consistent regardless of the chosen tactic.


  • Vulnerability to long ball passes against teams with fast Center Forwards (CF).
  • Compact formation may invite opposing defenders to crowd the midfield.

Tips for success:

  • Utilize the two Central Midfielders (CM) extensively to reach the CFs with a full-strength B-pass if passing lanes are open.
  • If the ball cannot reach the CMs in time, send it out to the wingers (Left Midfielder or Right Midfielder) for a controlled cross-pass to the strikers.
  • In higher divisions or against stronger opponents, use the Left Back or Right Back to deliver the ball to the CMs and aim for a clean diagonal cross-pass to the CFs before reaching the opponent’s final third.

The 4-4-2 is a basic formation suitable for beginners and teams still in the early stages of development. It serves as a foundation for practicing Control Possession playstyle.


The 4-1-2-1-2 formation is a well-rounded and highly adaptable formation. With a three-layer defense and a Defensive Midfielder (DM) anchoring the midfield, it provides a strong defensive base while offering various attacking options. It is suitable for counterattacking and can accommodate different playstyles.


  • One of the best formations that can accommodate any playstyle.
  • Allows Center Backs to conserve stamina for subsequent matches.
  • Suitable for counterattacking.


  • Attacking Midfielder (AM) and DM tend to line up instead of remaining parallel, requiring extra effort to cover more ground when chasing opponents.

Tips for success:

  • Use the CBs to deliver long ball passes (around 75% to 90% strength) to the CFs from just outside the penalty box, aiming near the edges of the opponent’s penalty box.
  • Be alert to the player with the cursor after the pass is made. If they remain stationary, be prepared to redirect the ball with a header. If they are mobile, they are eligible to run towards the through-ball’s landing area, signaling a potential scoring opportunity.

The 4-1-2-1-2 is a versatile formation that can accommodate different playstyles. It is highly effective with the right players, making it a suitable choice for intermediate and advanced players.


The 4-4-1-1 formation is a balanced formation with a strong focus on defense. It provides excellent defensive coverage while offering attacking options through an Attacking Midfielder (AM) playing behind a Center Forward (CF). It is a good formation for teams looking to protect a lead.


  • Strong defensive coverage against both infield and wing attacks.
  • Offers attacking options through the AM and CF.
  • Requires less cursor juggling compared to other formations.


  • Requires patience to execute a successful Tiki-Taka playstyle.
  • High chance of CF being overwhelmed by defenders during resets.
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Tips for success:

  • If you don’t have an elite AM or CM yet, use a tall defender in the AM slot. This player will be the primary receiver to send the ball to the CF with a header.
  • When in possession, frustrate the opposing team by keeping the ball among your defenders and midfielders. Look for openings to deliver a clean diagonal cross-pass to the CFs before reaching the opponent’s final third.

The 4-4-1-1 formation is ideal for teams looking to protect a lead or control the game. It requires patience and precise passing to execute successful Tiki-Taka playstyle.


The 4-1-3-2 formation is a variation of the 4-1-2-1-2 formation with slight adjustments for wingers. It provides a wide passing angle from the defense to the midfielders, making it excellent for Wing Play. It offers a potent attacking threat and is suitable for intermediate and advanced players.


  • Most technically sound formation for Wing Play.
  • Relatively easy to invade the opponent’s penalty box.
  • Offers more attacking options with five attackers.


  • Requires longer chase time to corner opposing wingers.
  • Wingers and defenders consume more stamina due to increased movement.

Tips for success:

  • When attempting Route One, let the long ball pass come from the CB with a pass strength of around 75% to 90%, aimed near the edges of the opponent’s penalty box. This will create a better chance for your CFs to win position against defenders.
  • If long balls for Route One attempts aren’t landing well, switch to Wing Play. The wide gap between the RB to RM and LB to LM allows for consistent cross-field passing. Use high-powered B-passes for better results.

The 4-1-3-2 formation is perfect for teams looking to excel in Wing Play. With the right wingers and attackers, it can create a lethal attacking threat. It is suitable for intermediate and advanced players.


The 5-3-2 formation provides a solid defense with a full line of defenders. It offers wide spaces for passing and creates a strong defensive base. It is an excellent formation for teams looking to preserve a lead or control possession.


  • Beginner-friendly with multiple defensive options.
  • Can accommodate any combination of strikers.
  • Difficult to congest and force opponents out of position.


  • Midfielders tend to go deep infield, requiring more time to challenge opposing wingers.
  • Requires a reset nearly 100% of the time to achieve its full potential.

Tips for success:

  • Focus on moving the ball safely between defenders and midfielders to burn time and frustrate the opposing team.
  • When a central opening appears, aim a B-pass to the centermost player for unchallenged control and subsequent C-pass to the CFs.
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The 5-3-2 formation is suitable for teams looking to preserve a lead or control possession. It requires patience and precise passing to excel. It is a recommended formation for intermediate and advanced players.

Moderate Formations


The 4-3-1-2 formation focuses on limiting opponents’ movements in the final third by creating defensive traffic. It may feel shorthanded offensively, but with the right strikers and precise long ball passes, it can be highly effective. It is a formation that requires practice and mastery.


  • Minimal effort required on defense regardless of the opponent’s ball delivery.
  • The center slot for a Defensive Midfielder (DM) can be easily adapted if a player is sent off (red card).
  • Can be effective even with a team of lower-rated players.


  • Scoring potential heavily relies on the quality of your attackers and your ability to target long-range passes.
  • It can become difficult to score in the final 25 minutes when fatigue sets in, and defenders become harder to outmaneuver.
  • Can be nullified by opponents with a clear speed advantage in most positions.

Tips for success:

  • Utilize the gaps between defenders to receive C-passes, redirect the ball with headers or clean receptions, and send the ball upfield with a B-pass.
  • If defenders tightly wrap around the receiver, send the ball higher to an empty space near the CF for a better chance to finish.

The 4-3-1-2 formation requires practice and a high level of skill in making sharp, precise long balls. It is suitable for teams with strong attackers and the ability to target long-range passes.


The 4-5-1 formation focuses on preserving possession and controlling the game. With a fully-loaded midfield line and four defenders, it allows for longer ball retention. It provides excellent defensive coverage and is ideal for low-scoring matches.


  • Can work even with a team of lower-rated players.
  • Offers the perfect balance between defense and offense.
  • Midfield cluster provides good infield defensive traffic.


  • Midfielders tend to clump up on one side, making it difficult to react quickly against Wing Play from the opposite side.
  • Lone striker will find it challenging to receive long balls.
  • Requires patience to create scoring opportunities.

Tips for success:

  • Select either Attacking or Balanced tactic to minimize the tendency of midfielders crowding on one side and allow for quicker response to cross-field passes.
  • Utilize the wings when advancing the ball and use B-passes for CF and C-passes for midfielders.
  • Advance slowly with Control Possession, looking for openings to create shooting angles.

The 4-5-1 formation is suitable for teams looking to preserve the score or play in low-scoring matches. It requires patience and skill to create scoring opportunities.

Dream League Soccer 2023: Mastering Formations and Tactics