The 4-3-2-1 formation, or ‘The Christmas Tree Formation’ as it was coined by Colin Welland writing for The Observer in March ’94, rarely enjoyed global mainstream success in football, but was memorably used in the last four decades by four different teams – a struggling Crystal Palace side in the ’70s, a fluid Den Haag team in the ’80s, Terry Venables‘ Tottenham side of the ’90s and most recently Carlo Ancelotti‘s formidable AC Milan side of the noughties.

Whilst it is not often used today, it’s influence on modern football can’t be denied and we select the best players to fit into this formation in 8-bit greeting card form just in time for Christmas.

And who’s to say that with the explosiveness of Carlos & Cafu, the solidity of Kahn, Maldini & Beckenbauer, the vision of Bozsik & Netzer coupled with the leadership of Zidane & Keane topped with the genius of Eusébio & Cruyff that this formation couldn’t be successful once again?

Festive greeting card with envelope, printed in full colour on 350gsm paper. 148 x 210 mm.