As we move forward through the years football continues to evolve. The developments are not often massive evolutions such as Sacchi’s zonal congestion from the 80s or Michels’ and Cruyff’s total football from the 70s, but most frequently minor positional or role adjustments within the different phases of the game. Every goal scored for your team and every goal conceded that is prevented for your team has high value – and as analytics continue to grow within our sport, we are seeing its impact on football’s phases little by little.
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AO loves Sergio Busquets, that's all you need to know. Email: [email protected] Twitter: @AdinOsmanbasic
“We found a lot of problems when attacking a 5-4-1 when the striker is marking our holding midfielder and 10 players are defending so deep. We are thinking about how you could attack against that system.” – Pep Guardiola when previewing the 2018/2019 EPL season.
The most successful team in German history and the most successful team in English history meet once again, this time in a pre-season friendly. Kovac shows a preview of the well-oiled German machine he will have on the field for the 2018/2019 season, while Mourinho shows potential issues his team will face during the next months, as he warned it could be a “difficult season.”
Guardiola and Sarri face off for the first time in England. Both managers showed a preview of their likely tactical approach for the upcoming 2018/2019 season. City’s pressing game proved to be the big difference between the teams, creating dangerous counterattacking opportunities even when the build-up was not being executed to a high level.
After the Argentineans’ poor start to the tournament, their minds are divided: Was Messi bad or was he badly involved? We analyze in detail which game-environment Messi needs to achieve his maximum effect.
Croatia surprised the world when they were able to defeat Lionel Messi’s Argentina 3:0 in the group stage. The clear strategy of Dalic and his men was to use the height and strength of their players to dominate the game in aerial duels. The possession game was very direct and short-lived while the game revolved mostly around Croatia’s midfield pressing block and Argentina’s positional play in possession. If Dalic’s men could win the direct ball they would attack, otherwise, they focused on creating counter-attack opportunities through their pressing and winning high balls from the Argentinean build-up play.
We take a more in-depth look at the national football team of Croatia, a country with a long history of producing highly technical players which help them to make runs in major tournaments and threaten the favorites consistently. What is Zlatko Dalic’s strategy in the 2018 World Cup?
Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund meet in the group stages yet again in what has turned out to be one of the more common and exciting pairings within the last 5 seasons. Los Blancos continue to dominate in Europe with a diamond made up of Isco, Modric, Kroos, and Casemiro. Dortmund sought to bring their high pressing 4-3-3 and counterpressing to the game, but ultimately it wasn’t enough.
Paul Pogba is a name many people in football are familiar with. Manchester United fans are likely still having nightmares over the fact that he left them to join Juventus just a few seasons ago. One of Pogba’s most famous quotes is one in which he explains why he left the Red Devils: “I said to Ferguson: ‘Play me, and I will show you if I’m ready or not,’ Then against Blackburn on December 31, 2011, I was on the bench. Ferguson put Rafael in midfield with Ji Sung Park. Then I gave up.”
Pressing, counterpressing, and counterattacking are three very popular concepts that are associated with the most exciting and dominant teams in modern football. Pressing and counterattacking are perhaps the more “classic” ideas in football tactics, while counterpressing is a buzzword which has become quite popular over the last five to six years – despite having existed for decades. But what do these terms really mean and why are they so important to modern football?