Although we all love the beautiful game, we may watch for different reasons. Some tune in as a family tradition. Others for personal or professional interest. And still others purely for the sake of entertainment. Here, today, I hope to add one more reason to your list if it’s there already: watch to learn. Specifically, to learn how a football club compiles individual contributions of skill, athleticism, intelligence, and desire, and stations those facets of the game for collective success. This is my working definition of football tactics inherent to formations.
Similar to our prior overview of The Most Popular Formations in Europe’s Top 5 Leagues (2020-2021 season), we now look at the most popular formations in MLS during the 2021 season (up until the time of writing - early September 2021). With most sides over two-thirds of the way through the regular season, it’s prime time to find form and compete for a playoff spot. And while preparation for success is managed differently by all, settling on a formation (or at least a general style of play) is a great sign that a team has found its collective identity. As such, final tallies for the season will undoubtedly change, but here are the numbers as they stand...
In one of the games of the Bundesliga season so far, SC Freiburg held onto their narrow lead over Vfb Stuttgart, grinding out an important result that sees them enter the top four - ahead of Borussia Dortmund. Here is our analysis of the match!
On this episode of The Longball Premier League Preview Show, John and Declan are joined by sports reporter for the Burnley Express - Dan Black, to discuss whether or not Burnley will ever change from a 4-4-2 (the answer is no). The panel also discuss whether Dwight McNeil could be unleashed this season, and how new signing Nathan Collins will fit into this Burnley back-line.
With the efforts and emotions of the enormously entertaining Euro 2020 still enduring, it’s hard to believe that preseason for many European clubs is already underway. To further set the stage for the impending season, it’s worth taking a moment to reflect on last season’s tactical trends. Tallied below are the most popular formations in Europe’s top five leagues as per UEFA association club coefficient (Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, Bundesliga and Ligue 1). Enjoy!
Nobody gave Sweden a chance at this summer's Euros prior to the tournament beginning, and even now after topping their group they will likely continue to be underestimated. But the Swedes have been more than defensively solid enough to demonstrate that they could have what it takes to challenge even Europe's elite at this tournament. Here is our tactical analysis of Sweden at Euro 2020.
Against all the odds, LOSC Lille defied expectations to win the 2020-21 Ligue 1 season. Normally considered a "one-team league", Lille ensured the 2020-21 season would go right down to the final day, where PSG's three season title streak would officially come to an end. Under the influence of Christophe Galtier, Les Dogues conceded just 23 goals and kept an astonishing 21 clean sheets in 38 matches. Their defensive prowess set them on the path to win the league title right from the very opening day of the season, and tactically, they've been one of Europe's most intriguing sides. So with that, here is a tactical analysis of Christophe Galtier's Ligue 1 winning LOSC Lille in 2020-21.
Very rarely has a manager dominated their domestic league over a three season period like BSC Young Boys’ Gerardo Seoane. The Swiss manager has led his Bern-based team to a shocking 81 points in 35 matches this season, nearly 30 more than second place FC Basel on 53. With his unique style of football and winning mentality, a host of Bundesliga clubs were interested in securing the signature of Seoane, with the Swiss ultimately signing on for Bayer Leverkusen. So ahead of the 2021-22 Bundesliga season, we take a look at what Gerardo Seoane might bring to Bayer Leverkusen.
Very rarely has a manager dominated their domestic league over a three season period like BSC Young Boys' Gerardo Seoane. The Swiss manager has led his Bern-based team to a shocking 81 points in 35 matches this season, nearly 30 more than second place FC Basel on 53. With his unique style of football and winning mentality, a host of Bundesliga clubs were interested in securing the signature of Seoane, with the Swiss ultimately signing on for Bayer Leverkusen. So ahead of Gerardo Seoane's move to the Bundesliga, we take a look at the tactics he deployed in his three season spell with BSC Young Boys.
In the managerial merry go round of the modern day world, Marcelo Gallardo is a rare example of a manager who has achieved success whilst staying at one club for almost the entirety of his career. The Argentinean has been with River Plate since 2014, winning 12 trophies during that time. He's constantly evolved his tactics throughout his time in charge, with the side looking very different today from when he first took charge back in 2014. Ahead of the 2021 season, here is a tactical analysis of Marcelo Gallardo's River Plate, from 2019-20.