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  • Tactical Analysis: Liverpool vs. Chelsea

    Last Sunday, Liverpool and Chelsea matched up for a pivotal match, one that would have dire implications for Liverpool’s title chances and Chelsea’s top four hopes. This game was an absolute cracker, with elements of absolutely everything that make a football match great – good defensive organisation, superb attacking play, missed chances, last-ditch tackles, slaloming…

  • Tactical Analysis: Bayern Munich vs. Borussia Dortmund

    Last weekend’s Der Klassiker was billed as a battle between an emerging force and an aging power, with Lucien Favre’s youthful BVB taking on Niko Kovač’s rejuvenated Bayern in a top-of-the-table clash that had serious ramifications for the Bundesliga championship. Coming into the match, the Black-and-Yellows held a two-point lead over the reigning champions, and…

  • Liverpool’s 4-3-3 vs. Liverpool’s 4-2-3-1

    Liverpool’s 4-2-3-1 is a defence-first system that’s typically utilized against teams that Jürgen Klopp feels Liverpool have a clear quality advantage against. It’s designed to increase the compactness of the team from the moment the ball is lost. The essence of the system is the strong central spine. The two key elements within the system…

  • What’s next for Atlético?

    It’s not breaking news that Atlético Madrid’s season has been (very) underwhelming; ten points behind Barcelona in the race for the league, knocked out of Europe after one of the Colchoneros’ worst matches since Diego Simeone arrived in 2011, and ridiculed by Girona at home in the Round of 16 in the Copa del Rey,…

  • ‘Boszball’ and what Julian Brandt and Kai Havertz’s rise means for Joachim Löw and Germany

    There are intriguing parallels which can be drawn between Bayer Leverkusen and Manchester United’s breathtaking renaissance post the turn of the year. Handcuffed by their managers’ mundane approaches, hackneyed responses to pointed concerns and an overwhelmingly apparent underutilization of electrifying attacking talent at their disposal – here we had two clubs who found themselves in…

  • How Tuchel Out-Coached Solskjaer at Old Trafford

    Line-ups With Paris Saint-Germain missing their star playmaker Neymar, and with Edinson Cavani withdrawing to injury after the Bordeaux match last weekend, Thomas Tuchel put out a makeshift side at Old Trafford for the first leg of their Round of 16 tie with Manchester United. The team alternated between a back three and a back…

  • Analyzing Sergio Ramos’ Heroic Performance Against Ajax

    With Marcelo and Raphaël Varane both out, and with Ajax putting Madrid’s resolve to the test early on in their quest to retake the Champions League, Sergio Ramos stepped up with a captain’s performance to put Real Madrid within touching distance of the quarterfinals. Alessandro Costacurta, one of the greatest defenders in history, praised Ramos’…

  • Analyzing Pablo Machín’s 3-5-2

    Barcelona may be on top of the La Liga table as usual, but this has been quite the bizarre season as far as the Spanish top flight is concerned, with teams like Abelardo Fernández’s Deportivo Alavés and Quique Setién’s Real Betis catching the eye with some impressive performances. The pick of the lot however has…

  • Analyzing Roberto Firmino’s Importance In Liverpool’s 4-2-3-1

    Individual talent can make a big difference in any sport, especially in football. Big talents can make the unexpected happen, pull something out of nowhere, and carry the team on their back. However, it is always teamwork that wins trophies. The great Michael Jordan once said: “talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.”…

  • Analyzing Lucien Favre’s 4-2-3-1

    After barely squeezing into the top four in the final weeks of the season, Borussia Dortmund had arrived at a crossroads last summer. The glory days of Jürgen Klopp and the relatively short-lived tenure of Thomas Tuchel had brought trophies and beautiful football to the Westfalenstadion, with both young coaches establishing themselves as amongst the…