Saturday, 16 September 2017


barcelona played juventus on tuesday night . over the course of last decade or so barcelona had shaped the world football . no club had changes the course or say helped football evolve and helped them with new styles and thinking . the barcelona coaches had been looked by the world since they bring something new to the world be it gaurdiola's intense pressing and tiki taka game which would test opponents concentration to the maximum . while luis enrique's side showed the effective use of counter attacking . their is a tendency in the coaches that they try to do something differnet to show that they are different from their predecessor's . their are other factor's that had made valverde's job interesting . first off their messi who has definitely has his say in terms of the position that he wants to play and the other one is iniesta who must had been unhappy in the luis enrique's formation because he wasnt seeing that much off the ball and secondly he didnt had the lisence to bomb forward as he did had under previous manager's . juventus was the first big test that his side had and i am not too certain that even though the scoreline suggested that barcelona had a comfortable game i wouldnt be too sure about that . barcelona definitely had more possession and definitely dominated the game but they are supposed to do that but the thing is that barca had their best lineup and juve definitely missed some key players and that makes all the difference . i had already said in my previous posts that players are the ones that make the formation work .
juventus and barcelona both started the game with 4-4-1-1 formation or make it a 2 as you want . now i am coining a new terms here and that is " riddle" . for me defense is a riddle that the team on offense needs to solve . the defensive formation is a riddle that the offensive needs to solve . team deploy different stratergies to solve that but the defensive team tries to put a question before the offensive team by deploying different formation and putting players behind the and trying to congest some park of the pitch which the opposition is likely to exploit or like to play in that zone or can have some advantage in that . now in the game barcelona are supposed to dominate and have more possession of the ball while juve are supposed to sit back and hit back on the counter .  even though on the paper it is shown that barcelona were playing 4-3-3 but in reality they were 4-4-2 . the difference between the barca of the old is that iniesta is playing on the left side and had the same lisence of movement as he had under gaudiola . the other change had been that messi was coming deep and trying to help the midfield move the ball upfield . this has obvious drawbacks first off with messi moving deep there are not too many players upfield to exploit the weakeness there is sometimes or counter attack very quickly which had been the feature of the luis enrique team . the second drawback is that you allow the opposition to get players behind the ball . juve were going to sit deep with number and hit on the counter . in the juve's formation bencantour was playing on the right had side but he was playing more central than right and wasnt bothered to track alaba but was more concerned about messi's movement through the middle and iniesta who may start on the left but likes to move inside with the play . so in order to narrow down the space between himself and prajnic he stayed very close prajnic and made the middle three . 
as i had said that with messi dropping deep  means that barcelona didnt  had players upfield who can cause trouble to juventus whenever barca recover the ball . while in enrique's time there would MSN high up the field who would launch a counter and that made them successful . messi dropping deep means that even though ball was passed to suarez he had to pass it back and that would give time for the juve players to get behind the ball and hold their shape . juventus were having two rows of four were defending deep . they were not concerned about the space that alaba was getting on the left had side since bencantur wasnt tracking him but barcelona were unable to exploit that advantage . as barca were letting time for juve to get men behind the ball . the responsibility to unlock juve's riddle was place on iniesta's and messi's  shoulder who tried to dance through the defense only to be stopped in the middle of the move . for me suarez wasnt that involved in the offense as he was supposed to be .
i will first talk about juve and then their shortcoming . juve were sitting back and hitting on the counter . the difference between the barca of the old and the new is that this barca seems to conserving energy and gone is that high pressing . instead they play deep and keep on dropping just as the ball comes up and dont try hasty moves . juve had joy when douglas coasta had the ball since barca just couldnt determine as to whether he was going to cut inside or stay wide and throw crosses . first off at time juve just tried to be too hasty with the ball in trying to hit barca on the counter . they should had realised that barca were not pressing and that they could just be patient and move the ball better and build a better attack . for me matuidi never did very well in the middle of the park and prajnic missed khadeira who complement him very well . prajnic was the only guy who impressed me in the juventus team his distribution was excellent and most importantly he could read the moves very well and made some very good interceptions and stopped barca's offense in the tracks . he really missed khadeira who complements him very well .
now as i had that player make the formation and tactics just looke the way messi rounded prajnic and brazagli . had there been bonucci and chilleni they would had read the play and done what would had been necessary but barzagli failed to read the move and messi scored . this is the difference between good player and ordinary player . they read the play and not only position themselves but they give appropriate instructions to their teammates as well .
there had been some new player at both the clubs and there had been talk about the  players that had been signed . first off demebele who was signed by barca . he didnt had much to show but his trouble is that he tries to overdo things and the coach will have to teach him as to when he should take on and when he should pass but i dont think that he can as be influential as neymar . second is matuidi who was signed by juve . the trouble with matuidi is that he has a great engine but not the discipline and the brain that is required to play in the middle two . his lack of discipline must had been one of the factors as to why PSG must had let him leave .
the man that had been quitely influential had been busquestus who is just joy to watch . he just keeps the game rolling and his only weakness had been that on the defensive side he tries to just be hasty and gets rolled on or gets outmuscled and if he can just cover that he will be absolutely a beast since his technical ability and his eye for pass is very good .

Saturday, 26 August 2017


man city played everton on sunday and after watching the match i can safely say that gaurdiola must be one of the best managers in the world ever to grace the game . before i write any further about the game i would love to say this that man city or gaurdiola should try to sign a big forward because that will make his team one of the most feared team . of all the three teams that gaurdiola had coached i think this is team that will give him most satisfaction in terms of coaching because he has got no superstarts here around whom he can build the play . now great coaches are those who can build a team . they put discipline in the team. they get the tactics right and know how to use players very well in what position. if i was to say that gaurdiola impressed me then i was not pleased with the way that everton performed or having their formation during the game . they came second best in everything and most importantly certain players look out of place or not good enough to play the game . the way everton played was negative and given two or three players others didnt do enough . i know koeman is a soft spoken man but he is a strict disciplinarian and you can  certainly ask david albelda of valencia about that . last but not the least rooney had retired from international football and i think that he produced one of the better performances of his utd carrer after that title winning run with robin van persie . 
man city started with a 3-5-2 formation with mane playing as a wing back with walker. while everton too went with the same formation with new boy Calvert-Lewin playing in front of rooney who was with newin were the only better performers in the game . i dont blame any manager for playing negative ( sitting back and soaking up the offense and hitting on the counter ) but then the real test is when you have the ball . you should show as to how you use it and how much better are you with it . the second thing that i like is that the coaches need to anticipate things . they need to read as to from where the opposition's offense is going to come from and what measures do they take (prophylaxis) . for me in this game koeman failed to detect the warning signs from the opposition which were there when the team sheet was issued .
first off i will write about everton even though man city is the home team . everton were going to sit back and hit on the counter . while sitting back even though man city had 5 at the back or in the middle as required they had lost of gaps in between them  for man city to work that space . secondly in each one on one's  man city players came better .the everton players just couldnt read the plays and just couldnt adjust themselves to it . now even though everton had 5 in the middle of the park the or say three in the middle in front of the back 5 but they were not in tandem with each other or say that not in a line . gueye and schneiderlin were in front of the back 5 but davies was leaving his position and was joining rooney and that created a hole in front of the back and middle ( i will show that in the diagram ) .the thing was that schneiderlin didnt had the positional common sense to go and close that space and make it difficult for man city.
when you play aguero and jesus upfront you have a very little space to work because the thing is that you dont have the aerial advantage but on the floor you are king and most importantly if the opposition does wants to score and close down the box then you have a very little chance to score . guaudiola side played to the plan the thing is say this is that even though he had walked and mane as fullbacks and he wanted to stretch the defense to create gaps for silva and de bruyne to work their magic . he knew that he cannot cross the ball in the because  he has three central defenders there ( the floor pass is the option )so he had a narrow space of the box to work the ball . all of his offense was from left because he believed that mane could make the difference and most importantly that silva can link very well with him . his game plan was made simple by ordinary everton side who came second best in every one on one challenge and for me just didnt contest enough in the one on one situation . silva and de bruyne were just exploiting the spaces that everton were leaving . the three centre backs needed to be too quite narrower compared to their positions that were in the game .
last but not the least everton need to change some players in the team . they cannot have schneiderlin and jagielka who are too slow for the modern game. i am criticizing schneiderlin because here is the central midfielder who doesnt wants the ball and just cannot read the game and is of no use to the team . 

Tuesday, 22 August 2017


yesterday chelsea played spurs at  wembly the new home of the spurs . chelsea were without several key players while some new one came into the team . on the other hand spurs had the same linup from last year . chelsea devised a formation to accomodate new signing bakayoko . christensen started for chelsea which meant that luiz was promoted to play in the middle three with kante and bakiyoko. both the team started to have three at the back while chelsea played 4-3-3 but dier's position was such that he used to drop on the right side of Alderweireld to give width to the defense and add one more body at the back . he was transitioning between midfield and defense as required . chelsea and spurs had both 3 in the middle of the park and each were trying to cancel out each other . kante was against dembele while dier was against bakiyoko . luiz and wanyama were trying to cover these two . both the teams didnt want to give anybody in the middle of the park and tried to make it compact . 
the started with chelsea sitting back and hitting spurs on the counter . chelsea had the first chance of the game with azipilicueta crossing a very good ball for moratta who fluffed the chance . both the teams wanted to have their fullbacks high up the pitch to give width to the offense . while chelsea's fullbacks like to cut inside and make a run into to the box. spurs fullbacks like to remain wide . to match chelsea's formation dier would shuttle between midfield and defense . spurs started to find foothold into the game after 10 min when they realised the chelsea back three or atleast the two rudiger and christensen dont like to come out of the defense to close down kane . so kane started to find space between the lines and spurs started to have ball in the final third . the trouble with spurs is that the front three are not in tandem with each other . both teams played a very deep line and didnt want to have space to run behind the back  three . spurs started to get ball in the final third but the trouble with spurs are on several counts . first off spurs are not able to bring ball from wide areas and had to content with crossing the ball . chelsea had very narrow three at the back so as to not have any space for kane to get at the end of the cross . secondly the front three dont seems to have in cohesion in them . now let me tell you but it is said that the strikers hunts in packs and here the front three didnt seem to be in tandem with each other and that had been the problem for them even last season in big games .
chelsea didnt had their influential pair in form of costa and hazard so they had to start with new signing moratta and willian playing up front the two will take time to gel and play off each other if chelsea or conte is going to play them together in the near future . chelsea were sitting were trying to hit on the counter attack but they didnt get enough service to moratta . the trouble with playing with willian is that at times he will try to over do things . you never know when he is going to cross and when he is going to run with the ball .spurs threat of the front three especially of kane who was getting the better of rudigen and christensen made chelsea to play with a back five and were pinned back by spurs for the majority of the game . they took their chances when they had one .
the game was decided by one silly mistake . chelsea's first goal was beauty by alonso but then the responsibility has to taken by lloris . he should had sorted out his position and should had known alonso's favourite side . but the main culprit in that game was wanyama first off he is playing in front of the back three and the fullbacks are high off the pitch and he cannot be wasting time over the ball and should just try to get it rolling . there is first rule in football that it is criminal to dribble inside your own half because if you losse possession you are letting the opposition a sight of goal . how many time in the game did wanyama lost the possession and put his side in trouble . i really dont know as to why did he though that he could just dribble out of his way out and could problems because to opposition because chelsea had atleast a wall in front of him and it stupidity to dribble like that when your fullbacks are high up the pitch and the centre backs are not in their natural position . for me wanyama and lloris lost the game for spurs which they should had drawn because of barshuiyi's own goal . chelsea had bought rudiger but his lack of pace and the easy that kane could turn on him must had made conte worried .

Saturday, 19 August 2017


napoli played nice in the ucl qualification at home and it can  be said that this was one of the best performance of napoli . last year i wanted to analyse napoli but wasnt able to do . the italian league wasnt at its best in the last two years with one team dominating the scene . napoli's coach Maurizio Sarri must one of the sort after figure in the world figure with his team playing very good attractive ,disciplined and proper football . this performance might just evoke memories of ariggo sacchi's milan who i suppose were playing  the same brand of football . the reason why i didnt said barcelona even though some may just try to  link it up with that . barcelona have the best players in the world and if you take out messi out of the equation then i think barca would just struggle .fine now the thing is that for the last year or so i had said that the coach role on the sidelines is very important and he is the one who is the sole authority in terms of taking final decision as well as having a hawk eye view of the game and have make the necessary adjustment during the game . another thing is that there are special players in the team but the thing is that for that special player to perform the other player in the team too have too contribute and perform very well or else the opposition can just stop the special one and stop the entire team . the reason good players can perform is because the other players in the team all chip in and perform as well . barcelona did well when messi had his burden removed by neymar and suarez and they too created a threat which created space for messi and vice versa it helped messi too my point is that whole of the team needs to perform not only on defense byt also on offense to really open up opposition defense at will or else you get stalled like nice . 
well napoli started the game with 4-3-3 system with mertens playing as the striker while insigne and callejon were alongside him . while nice started with 3-5-2 system . napoli from the first go started to dominate the game . they played crisp one touch football and played a high line and harrased nice on the ball to concede possession . the warning signs were early from the start with mertens trying to drop in the hole with either of the nice centre backs not tracking him . he was able link very well with players around him and cause problems to nice back line . 
nice had three at the back and one of them is dante who was playing in the middle of the three . he is supposed to calling all the shots when defense is concerned but he was the one who had a loss of concentration and very poor game reading which cost his team . nice back three had to track just mertens but failed to do so . both the teams had three in the middle so one of the napoli's front three would drop in the middle to have time and space on the ball also relive the pressure on the midfield . secondly if he was to tracked by the opposition centre back or wing back that creates space for mertens to have a diagonal run . for napoli the objective was simple insigne drops in the midfield and try to release mertens and callejon behind the back three . the other thing that helped napoli was that in the first half nice were trying to play a high line that created a space for metens and callejon where on they could be at the end of insigne's pass . other than that napoli just played a perfect game they passed crisp and played lovely one touch football .
while napoli were playing very good attractive football . nice were playing the opposite . nice had problems with moving the ball . they spending time on the ball and the problem was that for distribution they were heavily dependent on one player and that was their no. 6 seri . nice had 3 in the middle and what was the use of the other two . just to be alongside of seri and make numbers . nice had a good player in saint maxim who can drive the ball and draw players towards him but the others need to perform . the big question is why do we have players in the midfield . seri must be trusted coach's player but he needs support from players around him and most importantly i had said all along that the cohesion in the team and players working for each other is very much important . napoli had these qualities while nice just lacked them . the reason why nice lacked was because of over dependence on certain players while literally neglecting others in favour of others . there was lack of cohesion between the front players and between the all the three lines . i had said that earlier also that time spent on the ball allows the opposition to regroup as well as close you down which in turn stalls your offense . nice just allowed napoli to close them down and certain players in the team spent too much time on the ball than required . i hope when the coach see's the tape of these game then he should definitely at how he was not able to bring Pierre Lees-Melou and Vincent Koziello into the game  . Koziello's red card was because of seri stupidity .
just as napoli were good nice were hopeless and i hope that in the reverse fixture their coach makes the necessary changes and give us a good game since the tie is not over yet .

Friday, 7 July 2017


now this is the last match of the season that i am writing . germany played chile in the finals and even the though the game was exciting in terms of the spectator but in terms of a analyst it was not . i will take into account both the games between these teams in the tournament . before i write about the game i want to say something . if somebody had read my blog carefully then they might had noticed that i give equal importance to observation . let me explain coaches are there are on the sidelines just so that they can observe the game and pass the inputs to players on what they are not doing or where they can explore the opposition and who should take the position where and try to explore which zone and try to carve an opening out of it  . certain coaches do like to sit in the stand so that they can have a bird eye's view of the game and they pass their instructions to their assistants who conveys to the players . i think its a very good move since in many other games like the american football the offensive and the defensive coaches sit up high in the box so that they can have a birds eye view of the game and from there they can have a better reading of the game and can take necessary changes in the game plan . the reason for me write this is because i had been disappointed with the chile coach because when you are on the offense then at that time its is up to you as to how you try to open the opposition . for that you have to take into consideration all the various factors . i once read zlatan praising about jose mouriniho because he had such a good report card about the opposition team and its players that he could plan his tactics according to it . the reason why i am writing this whole para is that there were chances for chile to exploit germany or you can say there were spaces in the german defense that chile should had exploited and made the game more interesting .
chile started the game with their usual 4-3-3 formation with vidal given the free . while germany started the game with 3-6-1 formation with werner retaining his place in the team . the game started the with the usual plot with germany sitting back and chile controlling the tempo of the game . germany were prepared for this that is why they played 3 at the back and whenever they lost the ball the three centre backs would get very narrow and just sit in front of the 18 yard box and defend . i had already written in the previous post that germany like to play out from the back so as to allow the opposition to come and close them down . this would create space and if the ball is moved crisp and properly then you can take advantage of it and punish the opposition just as they did it in the S/F against brazil in the 2014 world cup . timo werner was in the team because of his pace and his ability to make runs . stindl and draxler would join him on the offense and move inside to complement him . chile having moving there fullbacks high up the pitch since they are very mobile and also that germany had kimmich and hector as the fullbacks who would tuck along side the back three so make it a back five so chile's fullbacks could move high up the pitch because germany afforded them the space by playing the formation .
germany like to move the ball from the back but i had said that in the earlier post that they dont have players who can play crisp football plus compared to chilean footballers they are not that comfortable on the ball . rudiger is being linked with a move to chelsea but for me he still looks a little too shaky on the ball and when pressed can make mistakes . even though chile were playing the high line and pressing but when germany could escape that press and move the ball chile would try to cave up and but as much time as they can in a move to get players behind the ball and defend . the game was going with pretty much the same story line untill diaz tried to spend time on the ball and got himself caught on the ball and let the advantage to germany . 
now the why did i write the first para was that germany had the 3-4-3 formation . the reason for writing the first para was that the coaches observe the opposition and try to find out the weakness in the team . they try to find out the weakness in the opposition flank and try to exploit it . first off germany germany were playing on the counter attack but they had to make sure that wener was matched against a guy who he can have some advantage . so werner was moved to the right against medel so that he can have the pace advantage against medel .
chile were controlling the tempo and were bringing the ball from back to front very quickly and were in a hurry to score and i think it was correct since germany were getting players behind the ball very quickly . now this where i think the chile coach should had improvised . first off germany had three in the middle rudy,groetzka and draxler . first off he should had studied as to which centre back was the weakest in the german back three and if he had seen the games then he would had fined that rudiger was the weakest link in the back three compared to the other two . rudiger had no joy against chicharito in the mexico game and had hernandez been smart he would had exploited it  . secondly lowe must had instructed his back three not to come out of their positions and stay compact and maintain there position .  so first thing that the chile coach should had noticed was that there was space between the lines where all the players sanchez,vidal and vargas were getting the time and space on the ball . although they were getting closed down very quickly but they were getting the time where on they were getting the first touch easily and could pass had they had a well orchestrated move . chile should had exploited this space but sadly they dont .
another fault over the course of two games had been with sanchez . first off whoever plays football ( good players ,important ones ) they know that the opposition tries to keep them in leash and make life difficult for them . but at the same time it help to create space for the others . just look at messi when he was on the right it created space for neymar and he had his best season and barcelona won it all . sanchez should had just taken a leaf out of that book and the coach should had instructed to play him that way  . he should had just kept the game flowing instead of trying to create things himself . he should had been just a simple piece in the puzzle and produce the special thing when he would had been given the time and space on the ball .
the goal by germany was like a bullet for chile and it was just an uphill task which they found very difficult . they should had just kept th cool and just played the normal game but the coach went too early in the changes and germany just sat back and soaked up the pressure and just countered when they had the chance and some chances should had been converted . the one thing that chile coach needs to ask is whethere they  can continue playing with this same one tempo football or can they play better and make the necessary changes in the game .

Saturday, 1 July 2017


the semifinals of the con fed cups were completed yesterday with chile and germany reaching the finals . while germany's performance was dominating  . the tactics that were employed in the game between chile vs portugal were totally enigmatic for me . i hope just as the game between chile vs germany was entertaining in the prelims the same way the final will be .
chile vs portugal was the chance for the both teams to show who plays the best football . it was a match which would give bragging rights to the team which won the game . i thought that it would be an interesting with both managers taking into consideration there strong suits and building their team according to it . messi is the best player in the world when he has the ball  at his feet . but the best finisher at this point of time or in the last 5 years had been christiano ronaldo . this man had been the best header of the ball and is a deadly finisher with both the feet and is the most potent striker around the 18 yard box . you can deploy any tactics when you have a deadly finisher like him in an around the box . the real reason why real madrid both this season was ronaldo and his finishing powress .
portugal started the game with 4-4-2 formation with ronaldo and silva starting up front . while chile started the game with 4-3-3 formation with vidal given the free role to drop deep and link up and given the lisence to go into the box . the game was better in the first 15 min with both sides having the chances . ronaldo was playing in the front two but he was shifted on the left side a position where on he starts the game against real madrid while andre silva was the main front man . the best chances came when a direct ball was fed to ronaldo front the back and medel failed to judge the flight of the ball . ronaldo has lost quite a pace or either he was unfit for the game but he fed andre silva who failed to finish. while on the other hand sanchez found the space between the lines and released vargas behind the back four . this was the last time that sanchez had any time and space on the ball because cedric just followed sanchez and clearly kept him in the pocket and this must had been one of the worst performance or we can say that cedric did a very good job . but the trouble is that for the whole 90 min sanchez's position was the same . he should had realized that cedric was following him and he should just altered his game  . for me both the teams were too slow . the fullbacks were having time and space on the ball and were trying to stretch the offense but there was no success for both the teams . first off chile cannot beat portugal's centre backs in header .secondly portugal just werent giving chile time on the ball and pressed them hard when the ball came in their half . while portugal just couldnt find ronaldo in and around the box and there service to the forwards andre silva was poor who was the main man .  the game started to get bored after this . both teams were just cautious but i was greatly by the lack of ingenuity by both the coaches and the lack of plan A .
the real enigma for me was why was ronaldo shifted on the left . he should be just around the 18 yard box or inside it and that invites attention which creates space for the others . his starting position is not a problem but his final position should be in the box just like he does for his team. there is no other lethal finisher in world ( with messi ) like him . portugal's decision to play deep and play on the counter is very correct . they dont have the players who can do the dogged running and chase ball but then on offense just like chile players honding on the ball a bit longer and getting themselves closed down and losing possession or missing the chance to release the pass .
this might be the worst game sanchez had played and his pass completion might be worst in the team . the most surprising thing for me was that sanchez position was the same for the whole match . why didnt the coach wanted to change his position ask him to be smart and change his ways i dont know . chile trouble was that they didnt had the target man around who they could base their offense . most important there were two glaring things that were evident in the match first off there was lack of crisp passing from the chileans around the 18 yard box and portugal's good defending  . but all and all both the teams were just too bad when they had the ball . 
in the second semis mexico played germany who are one of the best organised team under lowe . germany started the game with 3-5-2 but would switch to 5-4-1 when  they loose the ball . even the score does suggest the hammering but i would applaud mexico and had the coach changed some of his personal the game would had been more interesting . both the south andnorth  americans are very comfortable on the ball and are definitely athletic than the europeans . mexico started the game with 4-2-1-3 formation . the trouble with mexico that they could press germany but they should had studied there opponent who could surpass chile's press and score the goal . germans had become very good with the ball at their feet and can play good crisp football . most importantly they make very good decisions on the ball and just dont hurry the moves instead they are patient and are able to bring the ball inside from wide areas and create good chances . mexico's decision to play high line cost them and the other reason was that the marking . they just couldnt sort out the marking as to who was marking whom . the first two goals were scored on counter and the main reason for that was that mexico had two players in the middle but out of which jonathan dos santos was getting high up the pitch and that was leaving only herrera to guard a large space in front of the back four for herrera to guard . the first goal was resultant of that . the second goal was because the back got into confusion as to whether they should step up for hold up their line and shape and let the opposition come onto them . in that confusion they let werner have time and space in the hole and he just could release groetzka behind the back four to score .
the personal that i wanted to change for mexico was chicharito . in that mexico team he is most less technical player in the team . van gal was criticized for his time at utd but i think he was correct to release to chicharito because he wants more from his forwards and after watching chicharito he was right to sell him . had mexico moved jiminez in chicharito's position and let aquino on the pitch with lazano in jimenez's position then we would had a game . the mexican's were good on the ball but the trouble was that they were making mistakes at the crucial moment and most importantly there organisation wasnt good one .
last but not the least chile and germany played in the prelims and they had a very good game ( i was going to write that one but couldnt ) . if germany can just hold off that initial chile's pressure for the first 20 min then i think we have a very good game on out hands and if germany can stop making that initial mistakes when they play out from the back . the trouble with germany is that when they move the ball from back to front they are getting one dimensional and the opposition can read the game and close them down and start the counter very fast . instead when they move the ball they need to keep the opposition guessing and be smart on the ball . 

Wednesday, 31 May 2017


on saturday arsenal played chelsea in the FA cup final . in this season chelsea had been asked tactical question by two teams one was man utd who starangled chelsea at old trafford and conte was unable to find the solution to the tactical question that was posed to his team . the second one was posed by arsenal and here i wouldnt say he didnt found the answer but was a bit unlucky . although the tactics employed by arsenal and man utd were completely opposite to each other . man utd stopped chelsea in the tracks while arsenal took their chances and they out played chelsea on the offensive front  . i think wenger doesnt like to copy anybody's tactics and wants his team to outplay the opposition and beat them in the purer form of football rather . i think wenger only has the offensive mindset and he takes his chances on the defense . i dont what contemplated him to change his age old formation of 4-3-3 to 3-4-3but perhaps conte's success with that would had changed wenger's mindset to adopt it .
chensea started with their 3-4-3 formation which had won them the EPL while arsenal had started to play 3 at the back for the last month or so . i dont  think arsene wenger thinks much about tactics . instead he want to play beautiful football playing one touch football and believe in players abilities . unlike utd who strangled chelsea with a proper plan arsenal just wanted to play good offense and score more than chelsea . the commentator rightly commented that arseanl's back three would be tested today with their cohesiveness ,shape and discipline on defense . in the very first minute luiz played a ball behind arsenal's back three and pedro who made a diagonal run from right recovered it and i thought that  arsenal were going to have this trouble all match long . but arsenal recovered better to have foothold in the match . 
now chelsea like to play through costa . here costa was marked by mertesacker when he was playing on the shoulders of the last defender while he was followed out by holding when he was coming deep . arsenal atleast had recognised this and were not ready to give his time on  the ball . the interesting thing was that when mertesacker was guarding costa at that time holding was dropping deep to give mertesacker the cover so that if costa was to get the better of mertasacker he would be there . now this is where i find that conte should had spotted this and should had duly passed the note to his players that hazard was free ( how he was free i will show in the diagram ) . first off bellerin was high on the pitch trying to press alonso . secondly when the ball was passed to costa who was trying to stand against mertesacker at that time holding was dropping a little back . so at that time there was no natural opponent against hazard and that thing had to be exploited by conte . now i know that hazard was playing  on the left and the right footed player with the way they stand find it difficult to pass  to the player on the left but then costa is a good enough player and he can adjust to that and had done so rightly this season . hazard for me didnt show that willingness to get on the ball and get involved . he didnt had the touch for the first 10 min . i think costa should had been informed by conte that hazard wasnt having a natural defender against him and that he should try to pick him and hazard being told to use that space and start the offense from there . i wouldnt say that chelsea were poor they just played their game but when you come second best in any  one on one challenge then the opposition tries to exploit it and thats what arsenal tried to do with chamberlain who got the better out of moses and kept pushing chelsea back . 
any tactics are dependent on the players that the coach uses and how they perform . for arsenal danny wellback was leading the line and i am glad to say that for the first time any english player was found reliable enough by alexis sanchez just because let me tell you about good players mentality they dont pass the ball to average players because they are afraid that he wont be able to use that properly and sanchez who was playing behind welback was ready to pass the ball to him shows that sanchez was trusting welback and welback played very well . he made the diagonal runs the back three to stretch the chelsea defense and take the ball deeper and most importantly he kept the ball in tight situations and showed that he is good on ball .
the real chelsea problems were that the back line is not that mobile and especially cahill who doesnt likes to come out of the defense . at the same time credit must be given to wellback whose diagonal runs wasnt allowing the chelsea back three to come out of there positions and because of this time and again players like ramsey and ozil were able to find space between the lines and that was causing chelsea problems . secondly arsenal had three in the middle with ozil dropping back to make it three in the middle while ramsey was given the freedom to bomb forward . but the best player for the match for me was kante even though he didnt had the impact but that one moment in the match summed up his brain . although he is know for his athletic powress but the quality that he showed was second to none . chelsea were on offense and the ball ended in kante's feet . he showed that he was going to take the shot but realised that he would be better scopping the ball to costa and he did that and caught arsenal offguard who were going to get ready for the shot . i think it summed the player he is and the brain that he has got and i was impressed by that .