Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2

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Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« on: February 07, 2013, 09:11:56 AM »

First time poster here. We have an sort-of-like amateur foosball community with random people playing 2 vs. 2 against each other. One of the players has an amazingly hard and accurate shot. This is why he and his parter always play so that the partner-attacker just lifts his players upwards and the shooter-defender just shoots from his end with a pull shot. He is very, very hard to beat, and I was wondering if someone knows how this can be effectively blocked or at least made more difficult for him. The guy said that if you know what to do, he can't use it as much anymore, but of course didn't tell what the strategy was. Could someone help me on this?

Thank you.

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2013, 02:51:53 PM »
Hello Pumpernikkeli,

You could watch the "foosball fundamentals" on youtube. In the second part there is an overview of the defense fundamentals.

In a nutshell - no matter how you set the 5 bar, and your goalie (including your teammates 2bar) the opposing 2 bar always has at least 3 ways to score a goal :) It sounds frighting. That means that if Billy Papas in on the 2 bar against you.. you are f* screed.
But in reality I haven't played with someone who could perfectly shoot the 3 possible shots in every situation (the holes are different in the different setups). I also doubt you are playing against such skilled players.

I would suggest a practical approach. Look at his favorite shot. If it's pull then make a mental note how deep does he pulls it and where he aims. Is it the same pull every time or is it different? Does he has a favorite hole to aim? Does he shoots the bank shots?
Usually your opponents would fall into 2 categories depending on the skills:

1. (beginners) He has couple of favorite shots and he aim the same 2 holes time after time.
In this case you block the one direction with your 5 bar and make sure you don't move it when he shoots. And with the 3 bar you try to foos him on the other shot. The timing is important :).

2. (more skilled) He reads your defense and tries to shoot 2 holes (3rd of the theoretical hole usually takes ton of skill to shoot). Here is where the foosball becomes a mind game :) I usually set my 5 bar static and I have agreement with my goalie to protect the direct shot. Then I try to read our defense and the holes we have. I try to predict which hole he would try to shoot and foos him on that. It doesn't work every time but if you get 50:50 goals vs fooses then they will think twice if they want to gamble.
Again if you are new to this type of players make sure your 5 bar doesn't jump when the 2 bar shoots. This is very typical mistake on the 5 bar. Make sure you keep it static as a beginning. You will be surprised how much "bad shots" the 2 bar makes and they will be blocked by the static 5 bar. Later when you get better at reading your own defense and the 2bar intension you can start blocking dynamically with the 5 bar but you need to practice the static first.

Hopefully this helps.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2013, 03:22:17 PM by Malamir »

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2013, 04:31:08 PM »
Wow awesome reply! :)

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2013, 02:40:38 PM »
Thank you very much for your thorough reply, Malamir. We will look into this with my partner and hopefully we will be able to outplay him in the future.

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2013, 04:42:35 AM »
@garabdorje: Thanks :)

I noticed that my advice could be too "generic" or too "strategy oriented". I'll add some more points hopefully you won't be too bored.

Your 3 bar is doing all the hard work. He is flying up and down (not too much, usually 2 inches is more than enough) trying to make the opponent choose (hopefully the wrong) hole or to foos/block 2bar shot.
Your 5 bar is the defense "conductor".
The goalie is setting his men according your 5 bar.
I forgot to mention that when you setup a defense you make sure you don't protect one hole with 2 men (no 2 men stand behind each other).
Make sure the goalie also don't jump on opponents 2 bar shot.
Your opponents favorite shots is much better to be blocked with your 5bar and the 3bar. Leave the other holes to the goalie.

Now, again it won't work on every shot. If they manage to score - don't panic :) Don't leave the "strategy". Don't get mad at your partner. Don't make drastic changes (it's a bad idea to start chaotically moving all your men). Instead try the following:
Before putting the ball back into play take a small break (15-20 sec) usually your opponents won't notice. But don't just stand :) analyze in front of your opponents. Something like... "he started the shot here (point with a finger on the table), then he pulled and released here (again point with the finger), then the balled passed the 5 bar in this spot (again point..), and hit the goal in this point". Then say out the reason why it happened. Something like "I was slow/lost him on the 3 bar", "he scored next to the goalie - we need to adjust this spot" ... or even "well done guys, this was a perfectly executed shot!".
Do expect the opponents to laugh in the beginning :) (they won't laugh once you get better at analyzing) This is very powerful tool. This gets away the "magic" from his shot (rationalizing the situation) and is improving your defense with every mistake you make. Also the 2bar will be slightly insecure to do the same shot because "now they know.." and he is more likely to try his not so good shots.

Try it and come back to tell how it worked for you. :)

« Last Edit: February 10, 2013, 06:17:28 AM by Malamir »

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2013, 12:20:40 AM »
Okay, so yesterday was the first time we really got to try out these tactics of yours. In total we played twelve games and ten of these we won. five games out of these twelve games were against the guy I was talking about, and we won four. We have beaten this guy in like 1/10 games before, so the advice you gave really worked. Also the frustration from all the teams we played against was very palpable, since nearly every team plays with the same tactic of shooting hard with the 2-bar. Almost felt ashamed. Great success.

Thank you again.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2013, 12:24:55 AM by Pumpernikkeli »

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2013, 05:40:43 PM »
I'm really happy that it worked out so well for you!
There is nothing to be ashamed of. :-) That is simply a job well done..

You are welcome.

Re: Defending a defender's shot - 2 vs. 2
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2013, 06:23:02 PM »
Put one of your men in front of the ball when they shoot