In what appeared to be a game that kept every sport loving fan at the edge of their seat, the 3 nil scoreline definitely does not tell the whole story of the game. It was a game that begged for a moment of brilliance, and it took Borussia Dortmund’s left back Raphael Guerrero latching on to a deflected cross from Rafa Silva, for the flood gates of goals to open.
With Portugal now having one foot in the knockout phase, we bring you five things to note from the encounter.
1. PORTUGAL’S strength in depthEmbed from Getty Images
Fernando Santos’ side definitely boast of the best attacking line ups at the tournament. On the field and on the bench, the attacking quality of the Portuguese seems to be endless. The Hungarians could not contain the insane energy levels of the front men toward the end of the match. As Hungary tired, Portugal only got stronger and stronger as they brought on three highly influential attackers, who ended up playing a massive role in the victory.
2. NO CANCELO, NO PROBLEMEmbed from Getty Images
Joao Cancelo was ruled out earlier this week due to picking up COVID-19, which could still be a massive loss for the Portuguese at the tournament. But Nelson Semedo performed excellently well in his stead, not to mention the other three at the back alongside him.
Credits must go to the ever reliable Pepe, and the way he organizes his defense line. With Ruben Dias, Raphael Guerreiro and the positionally sound Danilo Pereira in front of them, Portugal’s defense had very little to worry about, and will be difficult to break down as the tournament goes on.
3. RESILIENT AND PHYSICAL HUNGARYEmbed from Getty Images
Though they may have lost in front of their fans, Marco Rossi’s side can definitely pick up the positives from this encounter as they were in it up until the 85th minute, keeping the score-line at 0-0. Their physicality as well as resilience will definitely be one to look out for as they play Germany and France.
However, their physicality also got them into trouble, conceding far too many fouls and a penalty late on. This penalty was ultimately converted by Cristiano Ronaldo, killing off Hungary’s chances of victory for good.
4. DID IT TAKE TOO LONG FOR THEM TO SCORE?Embed from Getty Images
If there is anything Fernando Santos has to be worried about, it has to be his side’s conversion rate in the opening match. Though they had a resounding 3-0 victory, the Portuguese team should have converted earlier than they did. Against another team who will give the Selecaos less time and space on the ball, the Portuguese may rue those missed chances. Santos will hope his forwards can do better in front of goal earlier on in the next few games.
5. RECORD BREAKING CRISTIANO RONALDOEmbed from Getty Images
As always the Portuguese all time goal scorer came up big for his side again. His brace sees him surpass Michel Platini as the all time highest goal scorer in the European Championships with 11 goals, as well as ensured he became the first man to score in 5 different editions of the tournament. Congratulations Cristiano on another fantastic record.
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2021 was the most successful year in the six year history of TheMastermindSite.com. Over the course of the year, we doubled our number of views, visitors, social media followers and email subscribers from where we left off in 2020. Our most popular feature and the aspect of our website that has gained the attention from pro club managers, former and current professional players, and writers from The Athletic, has been our tactical analyses all year long. So with that, here are the ten most popular analyses of the year, all written by Rhys Desmond in 2021.
The eleventh of July, 2021 will go down in footballing history as the day Roberto Mancini and his Italian warriors etched their name in the history books. After missing out on the World Cup in 2018 entirely, Italy snatched the European Championship from England, right under the Wembley arch.
Kausty and Rhys break down their thoughts from the final match between England and Italy, including Gareth Southgate’s substitutions, England’s penalty woes, and the Player of the Tournament going to Gianluigi Donnarumma. Be sure to follow the show @futbolmasterminds on Twitter and subscribe via Spotify and Itunes!
Euro 2020 has officially come to a close, with Italy crowned as tournament kings. England gave a mighty effort in the final to stop Italy from taking the crown, but as the match wore on there was only going to be one winner, and that was Roberto Mancini’s Italy. Nonetheless, the final proved to be an intriguing tactical battle. We break it all down in our Euro 2020 Final tactical analysis.
Calling all subscribers to TheMastermindSite.com, our Monthly Magazine for June 2021 has now arrived. This month’s issue features an analysis of England’s 2-1 win over Denmark and Italy’s 2-1 win over Belgium.
Following the conclusion of the Euro 2020 semi-finals, the Futbol Masterminds break down the semi-final games between Italy and Spain + Denmark and England. Declan then tries to convince John and Victor why Italy will win, with Victor and John pushing back with echoes of “It’s coming home.” Follow @futbolmasterminds on Instagram to see more … Continue reading Futbol Masterminds – Italy and England Through to the Final! But Who Will Win?
After the craziness of the Round of 16 resulted in France, Germany and Portugal all being eliminated from the competition, the match that was expected to take place in the Euro 2020 final will now come to fruition. Italy and England have been the two best teams at the tournament, and the only two teams to not only go unbeaten, but win all of their games up to this point. Here is a tactical preview of the Euro 2020 final battle between Italy and England.
In a highly contested affair, Italy and Spain played out a 1-1 draw after extra time, and needed penalty kicks to settle the match. After missing just one of their spot kicks, Italy sent themselves through to the final of the tournament, extending their impressive unbeaten run to 33 matches in all competitions. Here is our tactical analysis of the match!
When establishing a style of play, all top-level managers face the same pragmatic questions: How will positional defenders become functional attackers (and vice versa) as changes in possession occur? Where is the balance between earnest advancement and cautious reserve? And how is that equilibrium expressed, implicitly and explicitly, on the team sheet?
Following the conclusion of all four Quarter Final match-ups, the Futbol Masterminds discuss the winners and losers of the round, and make their bold predictions for the semi-finals. Follow @futbolmasterminds on Instagram to see more of the show and subscribe via Itunes and Spotify!
Kausty and Rhys dissect all eight Round of 16 ties, including in-depth analyses of Gareth Southgate’s winning tactics for England against Germany, and Didier Deschamps’ losing tactics for France against Switzerland. Kausty has some choice words to say about Paul Pogba, but Rhys comes to the Manchester United man’s defense, calling it one of the standout performances from a player at the tournament so far.
Rhys and Kausty also disagree on how Southgate should progress his team moving forward, and make their picks for the final of this summer’s championships. Follow @futbolmasterminds on Instagram to see more of the show and subscribe via Itunes and Spotify!
Having progressed to the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup, many picked England as favourites to steal the crown at this summer’s Euros. Now heading into the Quarter Finals of the tournament, Gareth Southgate’s team remain unbeaten, without having conceded a single goal. Here is our tactical analysis of England at the Euros so far, and their chances of winning it all.
The knockout stage of an international tournament always serves as an emphatic reminder of what we all would claim to know: even the best laid plans can prove insufficient over the course of 90
minutes of football. And while the team who keeps their shape is often assumed to be in the ascendancy, adaptation undoubtedly preempts success; that is to say, some of the greatest examples of tactical prowess in sport are evidenced when the first blink leads to the last laugh. For instance, during their Euro 2020 round of 16 clash versus Wales, Denmark employed at least THREE different formations, modifications which ultimately tipped the result in their favor. Here, we take a closer look at the incentive and effect behind each change.
After the conclusion of Groups D, E, and F, the Futbol Masterminds get together to discuss all the events from the week that was at the Euros including those two massive 2-2 draws in the Group of Death! Follow @futbolmasterminds on Instagram to see more of the show and subscribe via Itunes and Spotify!
Having been placed in a group with Denmark, Russia and Finland, Belgium were certainly expected to top Group B. Roberto Martinez’s side did not disappoint in the group stages, winning all three of their matches and conceding just 1 goal. Here is our tactical analysis of Belgium at Euro 2020 so far.
The stage is set, and the Puskas Arena will be the venue for another round of rivalry between the defending champions of the European Championships Portugal and the current world champions France. The French will be hoping to cause the Portuguese a heartbreak of the same gravitas which they themselves suffered from the finals defeat in 2016, making this all the more an intriguing encounter.