England

England

Liverpool’s “two banks of four” works well against ten men

February 10, 2010
Liverpool’s “two banks of four” works well against ten men

A couple of weeks ago we detailed how Jose Mourinho’s Inter side played brilliantly after going down to ten men against Milan’s 4-3-3 system, keeping two players upfront but asking them to work the channels, thereby occupying the whole of a four-man defence, matching a three-man midfield, and having a spare man at the...
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Posted in Chalkboards, England | Comments Off

Arsenal 1-3 Manchester United: Wayne Rooney brilliantly demonstrates the value of a ‘false nine’

January 31, 2010
Arsenal 1-3 Manchester United: Wayne Rooney brilliantly demonstrates the value of a ‘false nine’

It’s one thing to go out, play to your manager’s orders and get results. It’s an entirely separate thing to go out and score great goals. And when those two come together, you have perfect football. This doesn’t happen too often – playing to your manager’s orders is often associated with defensive, negative football –...
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Posted in England | 14 Comments »

Birmingham 1-1 Man Utd – two dropped points and two tactical errors from Ferguson

January 9, 2010
Birmingham 1-1 Man Utd – two dropped points and two tactical errors from Ferguson

Let’s make one thing clear – Birmingham are a very good side this year, and a point at St Andrews is not a disastrous result. Nevertheless, United will have been disappointed to come away with just a draw, because Birmingham didn’t play well on the night, and if you have 62% of possession, you...
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Posted in England | 3 Comments »

Arsenal 0-3 Chelsea – because Wenger didn’t seek to nullify Ashley Cole

December 1, 2009
Arsenal 0-3 Chelsea – because Wenger didn’t seek to nullify Ashley Cole

It’s hard to believe you’ll see two such similar goals in such quick succession all this season. First, an Ashley Cole cross from the left was turned into the opposite corner by Didier Drogba. Three minutes later, an Ashley Cole cross from the left was turned into the opposite top corner by Thomas Vermaelen,...
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Posted in England | 5 Comments »

Chelsea 1-0 Man Utd – but this could hide Chelsea’s problems with width

November 8, 2009
Chelsea 1-0 Man Utd – but this could hide Chelsea’s problems with width

Football is not chess. Formations and tactics don’t always win games. Today was one of those days – the only goal of the game came from a refereeing decision that was, frankly, incorrect. However, since this is a blog focussing upon tactics, we shall try to ignore that error of judgement, and instead look at...
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Posted in England | 1 Comment »