Tilting is a defensive tactical action, which encompasses all the movements carried out by a team’s players, or those of a specific line, to reach the area where the ball is located and to be present in the necessary defensive areas of the pitch, thus trying to prevent the opponents from continuing with their attacking play. These movements can be lateral, forward and backward.
To carry them out correctly, the whole team must be perfectly organised and coordinated from one flank to the other, in order to reduce the gaps between the player who has the ball and the team-mates who are closest to him as much as possible.
Therefore, maintaining the right distance between players is fundamental in the tilting, as this is the only way they can offer constant and quick cover at the precise moment that one of their teammates needs it. There are two types of tilting:
- Horizontal swings: these are the movements carried out by the players in a lateral direction, which are always carried out according to the evolution of the ball.
- Vertical swings: these are movements made by the players in a longitudinal direction. These are carried out according to the vertical position of the ball on the field of play.
Objectives of tilting
The aim is to create a solid defensive block in the area where the ball is located, as well as to reduce the vertical and horizontal spaces in all positions of the ball. Thanks to this, the opponent will have less space to make a manoeuvre and will also have less time to analyse the game.
Well-coordinated and well-organised tilts can prevent the opposing team from advancing in their attack. They also force them to play horizontal football, which favours the interception of the ball and allows them to create defensive numerical superiority in the area where the ball is located.
In addition to all of this, thanks to the tilting, defensive play is generated, which is made up of permanent defensive aids. It also considerably limits the vertical play carried out by the attacking players. As it is a collective pressure, each and every player in the team will participate in the defensive phase.