Napoli reach the semi-final of the Coppa Italia after overcoming Fiorentina. It was a typical performance of the hosts, whose left side was prominent. They shaped-up in their typical 4-3-3 against a less-orthodox 4-4-1-1 from Fiorentina, which featured a lop-sided first line during build-up.
Bayern produced their best performance of the season to thrash a weak RB Leipzig in the most eagerly-anticipated match of the now-passed Hinrunde. Ancelottiâ€™s side skilfully handled the visitorsâ€™ pressing, which had an off-day lacking several features which define their excellent success so far. Sadly, the game was practically over by the 30th minute, after Forsberg was dismissed for a challenge on Lahm while an excellent Bayern were already two ahead. Therefore, the analysis focuses largely on the first half of football.
The most tactically-enticing game of the weekend-just-gone came from Spain as the best defensive system in the world travelled to stopÂ Sampaoli’s fluid Sevilla team.
Two of the most progressive young coaches in football came together last night in the pressing-duel of this Champions League matchday.
RB Leipzig continued their exceptional unbeaten start to the season with an away win at the Volkswagen Stadium. They felled a Wolfsburg teamÂ who join the list of teams who failed to cope with the intensity of HasenhĂĽttlâ€™s side.Â
After Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic challenged City with their pressing game in the midweek draw, Pochettino’s Spurs took full advantage and clinical first-half finishing saw them administer the first defeat of Pep Guardiola’s City reign.
MeetingsÂ between Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund have become a regular event in recent years and made for some special matches. On their return to the Champions League, Tuchel’s new-look side played host to Zinedine Zidaneâ€™s reigning-champions.
After Dortmund’s issues were clear to see in their opening win against Mainz, they were completely exposed by RB Leipzig. The pressing of the hostsÂ gave them full control over the match for large periods in what was a disappointing performance for Tuchel’s side.
It is rare to see a team lose its three most crucial players all within the same transfer window. Yet over the course of 2016â€™s off-season, Borussia Dortmund have surrendered Mats Hummels, Ilkay GĂĽndogan and Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Bayern and Premier League. Despite such big losses, Tuchel and the management have replaced well and the squad is looking promising for the coming season. Reinforced by the signing of numerousÂ young players alongside SchĂĽrrle and the return of GĂ¶tze, Dortmund have a squad with great potential with the next few seasons in mind.Â However, their most important player may have already been at the club.
In perhaps their best performance to date under Pep, Manchester City looked excellent against an albeit weak West Ham United. From the first minute, they controlled the game with a strong display in possession matched by intelligent pressing both in and out of transitional moments.