CONCACAF Qualifiers: What is the Best Formation for Canada’s Men’s National Team?

It’s early days for the Canadian Men’s National Team, but there is a lot to be optimistic about. After a 5-1 win to open their 2022 World Cup Qualifying campaign, here are some thoughts on the way that John Herdman is lining up players and moving them around the field. In a world where just a few years ago, the biggest club representative of Canada was Unattached FC™, it is nice to see some healthy competition and tough decisions for the coach.

Why South American players tend to fail at Manchester United (Part 2)

Following Manchester United’s first nine South American signings that were bought between 2000 and 2010, the club then purchased 11 more between 2011 and 2020. Those 11 purchases during the 2010s cost the club approximately £158.3 million in transfer fees, plus millions more in yearly wages. Over the last 10 years, inflation has greatly impacted the price of football transfers. Wealthy clubs began flexing their financial muscles more than ever in order to acquire various top-quality and in-demand players, which in turn has resulted in continuously increasing transfer fees. 

How to overcome the deep-block – Tactical Theory

One of the main problems facing big teams nowadays is the deep-block, because of the lack of capabilities of most other teams by comparison. Smaller clubs often resort to the deep-block as a solution in their matches against the big teams, and therefore, coaches need to find a solution to this dilemma that they face in many matches.

Fulham 1-2 Leeds United – Tactical Analysis

For a team sitting 18th in the Premier League table and facing relegation, Fulham played like they already had no hope. Leeds United fought long and hard and came out with a well deserved three points, shooting them up to 11th. Looking at the statistics on paper, no one would be able to tell that Fulham played a lackluster game. Here is Amelia-Toni Adejobi’s Tactical Analysis of Leeds' 2-1 win over Fulham on March 19, 2021.

Session Plan – Spatial Awareness & Switching Play

Recently I have heard much in the way of what I would classify as "misinformation" regarding the readiness of youth players to learn tactical concepts like switching play. Switching play as a tactical concept ultimately comes down to recognizing space and making decisions based on that spatial awareness. Switching play doesn't mean crossing a long-ball forty/fifty yards from one side of the field to the other. It is about recognizing the space to see the opportunity of when space is condensed, versus when space is available and what to do in both of those situations. It is therefore an essential concept that can be taught to players of just about any age. Here is a session plan and key coaching points to match, all about spatial awareness and switching play!

Futbol Masterminds – Lingard, Bundesliga Top Four Race & Racism in Football

Since arriving at West Ham, Jesse Lingard has revitalized his career and transformed the Hammers into one of the most dangerous attacking outfits in the Premier League. This week the Futbol Masterminds discuss whether or not he could start for Manchester United next season and why he's had so much success with David Moyes' team. The panel also discuss the Bundesliga top four race, Mane and Salah's 2021 relationship, and racism in football following this week's disappointing incident in the Europa League involving Glenn Kamara and Ondrej Kudela. Subscribe via Itunes and Spotify below!

Antonio Conte – Inter Milan – Tactical Analysis (2020-21 Edition)

Since Antonio Conte's arrival at Inter Milan, the Italian giants have transformed into the most effective side in all of Serie A. Other than disappointments in the UEFA Champions League and losing last season's Europa League final, Conte's start to life at San Siro has gotten off without a hitch. I Nerazzurri narrowly missed out on the title to Conte's old side Juventus last season by one single point, and this season they look favourites to finally dethrone the Old Lady from securing another crown. But the results and the performances are not the only impressive components about Antonio Conte's functional Inter Milan. The Italian manager's tactics have been remarkable as they have been throughout his career, and so many players have taken their games to new heights under the influence of the former Premier League winner. Here is a tactical analysis all about Antonio Conte's Inter Milan in 2020-21.

Previewing the international break (March 2021) – Netherlands, Germany and Canada

The first international break of 2021 kicks off an exciting spring/summer in the world of football with three major tournaments: the Euros, Copa America and Olympic Games -  taking place in a few months' time. All three tournaments were supposed to take place in 2020, however due to the COVID-19 pandemic they were pushed to 2021. Here we will highlight a few teams and storylines to keep an eye on this international break.

Thomas Tuchel – Chelsea – Tactical Analysis

Although Chelsea can't quite seem to find the back of the net, very few managers in Premier League history have had a better start to life than Thomas Tuchel. The Blues have won nine of their thirteen matches under Tuchel's management in all competitions, keeping eleven clean sheets during that time. Some underlying issues are still evidently exposed as Tuchel works around his squad and attempts to find his best possible eleven, but the improvement from Frank Lampard is also evident for all to see. Tuchel's defensive tactics in particular have been outstanding, and much promise for the future remains if Chelsea can find their shooting boots and score more goals on a regular basis. Here is our latest Thomas Tuchel analysis, covering his first thirteen matches in charge at Stamford Bridge.

Manchester United 1-0 West Ham – Tactical Analysis

West Ham United have had an extraordinary season thus far. However, against second-place Manchester United, they failed to play with any conviction, almost as though they didn't believe in themselves to win the match. It was a confusing performance from the Hammers, who have achieved positive results against the likes of Leicester, Spurs, and even Manchester City this season. Here is Amelia-Toni Adejobi's Tactical Analysis of United's 1-0 win over the Hammers.

How to Defend like a Pro

Over the past decade, the emphasis on attacking play in the beautiful game has grown and grown. Coaches and fans are increasingly more excited about the attacking moments of the game, rather than defensive moments. Defending has become an afterthought, and teams that set up to defend are often deemed "boring" and "dinosaurs" by fans around the world. But defending remains an integral component to the modern game, and often it can be seen that teams with the better defense structures (Atletico, Manchester City, etc.) often win more football matches.