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  • Tactical Analysis: Hertha Berlin vs. RB Leipzig

    On Wednesday, Hertha Berlin visited RB Leipzig at an empty Red Bull Arena on the 28th Matchday of the Bundesliga season. With Dortmund’s 1-0 defeat against Bayern on Tuesday, Leipzig were able to jump to second place if they won against Hertha Berlin, who had picked up two wins in a row since the league…

  • Deportivo La Coruña: The Demise of a Spanish Giant

    Once Galician giants and La Liga champions in 2000, Deportivo La Coruña surprised everyone with their rapid rise in Spanish football in the 1990’s. Now precariously sitting fourth-bottom of the Segunda División, the famous blue and white stripes could soon find themselves playing in Spain’s third tier for the first time since the 1980-81 season.…

  • Argentina’s Agony: 34 Years of World Cup Despair

    As it turns out, Argentina is the breeding ground for a lot of things. Tango (both the dance and the greatest ball of all-time), Gauchos, and world-class footballers. However, with Argentina’s conveyor belt of high-quality footballers comes an expectation that is often too much for the players to deliver when the World Cup comes around. …

  • Enzo Bearzot’s Italy: Part 1: Bearzot’s Boys Spring Azzurri Back to Life

    Not only did an era end when Italy were eliminated from the group stage at the 1974 FIFA World Cup, but the Italians also suffered a blow in the battle of football ideologies.   Catenaccio was still the prevalent tactic of choice for many Italian teams of that epoch, but the tournament played in West…

  • Tactical Analysis: RB Leipzig vs. Mainz

    After going winless in three games, RB Leipzig took on relegation-threatened Mainz on Matchday 27 in a must-win game to keep their title hopes alive. After Dortmund and Bayern put on convincing displays a day before in their wins against Wolfsburg and Eintracht Frankfurt, the pressure was on Leipzig to deliver. They did it in…

  • “A Cesspit of Lies, Treachery and Whispers”: How Real Madrid’s Dressing Room Transitioned from Ferrari Boys to Galácticos

    If it isn’t raw feeling, football fans don’t want to know. Corporatism, footballers who don’t like football outside of their professional lives, empty stadiums, players not celebrating goals – all are treated with undiluted contempt by a hopelessly romantic footballing public.    But the game can be a dispassionate pursuit. Though their supporters might expect…

  • Tactical Analysis: Bayern Munich vs. Borussia Dortmund

    This was the most highly anticipated Der Klassiker in recent memory, with Dortmund having the opportunity to cut the gap on league leaders Bayern Munich to 1 point with a victory. The unprecedented  tension and circumstances surrounding the match itself added fuel to the fire, as football fans salivated over the first major match-up since…

  • Valeriy Lobanovskyi: Football’s Forgotten Pioneer

    When we look at how Barcelona, Manchester City, Ajax, even Sheffield United play, our minds invariably go back to the Total Football of Rinus Michels and Johan Cruyff. The high press, positional rotations and pursuit of space preached by the Ajax, Barcelona and the Dutch national sides of the 1970s have come to define how…

  • Osvaldo Ardiles: English Football’s First Cult Hero

    From Pelé and Diego Maradona in the last century, to Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in this one – each generation produces a handful of players that are truly elite. These are the superstars of the sport whose on-the-field displays can confound even the sharpest analytical minds. Even though these are the players that frequently…

  • Charlton Athletic: Fraud, Funerals and the Football League

    From Gary Neville to N’Golo Kanté, it appears just about everyone in England has voiced their opinion on ‘Project Restart’ – feasible, irresponsible, or a self-interested money grab. The stakes are, in one way or another, life and death: players risking their lives to play football in a nation that has amassed nearly 40,000 COVID-19…