Carlos Bilardo, first, and then Marcelo Bielsa, are the two fundamental pieces of the history of defensive line of three in Argentinian football. Juan Pablo Vojvoda, the coach of Talleres de Córdoba, has inherited the role. He was the successor to Sebastián Beccacece at Defensa y Justicia, when Beccacece left the team at Florencio Varela to become Jorge Sampaoli's assistant with the Argentinian National Team. It wasn't the preferred system of the current Córdoba coach but the group incorporated that culture. He used it in a series of matches although many times he returned to back four. In Cordoba, in the first leg against Palestino on Wednesday, he might return to three at back. Leonardo Godoy, his right back, fractured his left ankle so will be out for a few months.
A few years ago Bilardo told 'France Footballer' magazine that he was the creator of the 3-5-2, the greatest tactical novelty of the 20th century. He came to explain this tactical system in an auditorium in front of Rinus Michel, Bobby Robson and Marcelo Lippi. He presented it to Estudiantes in 1982. He demonstrated it to the world in 1986 when the Argentinian National Team was under his command at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. In 1984, when he announced it to journalists, many questioned him. A little while later, in Italy, the 3-5-2 became fashionable. A system that when it's used well allows a team to use the full width of the pitch, as long as the rotations are good.
Bielsa followed another variant: Louis Van Gaal won the Champions League in 1995, using the 3-4-3, with Ajax. The difference was in the use of wingers. Before that Bielsa already knew about the Dutch culture of the wines and the midfield in 'rombo'. He drew triangles in every corner of the pitch, always looking for the free man, generating numerical superiority. Betting on the players exploding into space and the individual talent of the playmakers.
Vojvoda has a natural winger: Sebastián Palacios. But he will build a 3-5-2, although with the ex-Boca forward running down the wing. Another option to play down the flank is Juan Ramírez, although he would be used more as a second creative midfielder. The middle of the pitch will be controlled, as always, via Andrés Cubas and Pablo Guiñazú, although the experienced man tends to lean to the left. The young Leonel Rivas, a natural winger, has been converted into a key midfielder. This means he would be on one side and Palacios on the other. Tomás Pocchetino could rotate with Ramírez.
Talleres already used this system in the first leg against Sao Paulo. A key aspect of that match was the pressure they put on the Brazilians throughout. The back three allows you to add one more player to another area of the pitch which is key to the quick recovery of the ball. They will probably try the same against Palestino. The objective being to suffocate the opposition, recover quickly, open up the pitch and reach the flanks. That is what the this formation brings to the table.