In the quest to establish beautiful football, possession-based play often reigns supreme, with the bitter ugliness of grit and determination seen as a lower standard way of approaching the game. But when done right and done effectively, counter attacking football can be the deadliest approach to winning football matches. That notion came to prominence over the weekend, as both of last season's Premier League title contenders dropped points, and Bundesliga giants RB Leipzig crashed down the stairs at Union Berlin.
Preceding Sadio Mané's shock departure for Bayern Munich, Reds recruitment staff kept themselves busy preparing for the possibility of one of their infamous front three departing. Spearheaded by newly promoted Sporting Director, Julian Ward, Liverpool landed on the decision to approach Benfica's star striker Darwin Núñez, who reaped havoc when the two teams met in the UEFA Champions League earlier this year. The Uruguayan's outstanding 26-goal haul in the Primeira Liga caught the attention of clubs around Europe, putting his price tag up all the way to €80 million. Liverpool remained favourites to sign the Benfica man throughout the early days of the window, even despite competition from Newcastle and United; and Jurgen Klopp has already expressed his delight in the securement of Núñez's signature.
Over the past few seasons, we've seen some legendary Champions League finals. This encounter between Liverpool and Real Madrid, in many ways, was more lethargic and leisurely. A chess battle as both teams patiently worked through the thirds and never fully pressed the gas, Liverpool couldn't quite ever get up to full speed in matching Real Madrid's assuredness and steady flow in possession. With Courtois supersonic-ifying his gloves beforehand, the match ended with Real Madrid coming out as winners, claiming an impressive double under the influence of Carlo Ancelotti, and one last hurrah for many of the decade-defining stars from the 2010s. Here is our tactical analysis of Real Madrid's narrow 1-0 win over Liverpool.
With one of the best midfielders in the world in Aurélien Tchouaméni, AS Monaco are now slowly making their way back to their best, and look set to finish within the top three again this season. As a result of being one of the world's top emerging talents, conversations persist about possible next steps for the top-quality 22-year-old. With that, we decipher the best fit for the Monaco man if a move were to be made this summer.
On this week’s Longball Preview, Kausty Kapoor joins Declan to review last week’s action in the Premier League and all the European action before taking a deep dive into West Ham vs Arsenal, and the relegation six-pointer between Watford and Burnley. Be sure to follow the show @mastermindsite on social media to never miss an update, as we continue to preview the remainder of the season!
Fabinho has been instrumental to Liverpool's success for almost four years now, as the Reds have won four major trophies - including the Champions League and Premier League, with the Brazilian at the heart of their midfield. It may not be time for the Reds to move on from a man who has made the position his own, but there is certainly an opportunity to recruit fresh, young talent that can learn the role and grow into the side, just like Liverpool have done with Luis Diaz.
Liverpool have been utterly rampant this season on all fronts. With the strength in depth Jurgen Klopp has to offer in almost every position, the Reds look strong contenders to win each and every competition this season - going strong in the UEFA Champions League, Premier League and FA Cup. With an EFL Cup win already under their belts, a historic quadruple remains in their sights with a little over a month of action to play.
At the beginning of January, I, alongside many members of the footballing community, began to mentally prepare for Liverpool's life without Sadio Mane. In 'Finding the next Sadio Mane – Tactical Analysis', I selected Leipzig's Christopher Nkunku as the perfect man to replace the Liverpool legend, amidst a crowd of Luis Diaz, Emmanuel Dennis and Rafael … Continue reading Why Sadio Mane’s killer instinct makes him a perfect striker
The Portuguese forward has scored 5 headed goals at Liverpool this season, and 5 for Portugal in World Cup Qualification. Very few forwards on the planet can claim a better record this season, raising the question - how does a 5'10 false-nine-left-wing hybrid score so many headed goals?
We're now two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, and the transfer landscape is starting to return to some sense of normality. Despite that, no one expected the 2022 January window to be busy for any club not nicknamed after a highly intelligent black and white bird. But by the time February rolled around, the 2022 January window turned out to be one of the most exhilarating affairs since COVID hit the football market. Unfortunately for many top quality stars, that only resulted in places lost, broken promises and newfound roles on the bench. Without warning, some of the Premier League's most in-form stars suddenly dropped out of the team, only increasing the intrigue of all that happened earlier this year. So with that, today, we take a look at 6 Premier League stars who lost their place this season to little fault of their own.
In all of the January discussion surrounding Liverpool's front three and what might transpire in the future, Luis Diaz came out of Porto obscurity to sign for the Reds for a €45 million fee. The Colombian wing wizard has wasted no time in settling into his new team, which just so happens to be one of the greatest club teams in the world, stealing the show nearly every time he plays. Here is our analysis of Luis Diaz's start to life at Liverpool, and why he's perfect for the Reds.
18-year-old Jude Bellingham has lit the Bundesliga on fire since arriving at the start of the 2020-21 season, catching the attention of clubs, fans and managers across the globe. Evidently with still so much to learn, the Dortmund man plays with a class and confidence beyond his years, and already has a manager wanting to build a team around his undeniable quality. In this tactical analysis, we take a look at why Bellingham has excelled at Dortmund, and attempt to identify his next big club.
It's time for our Monthly Magazine of January 2021! In this month's edition of Fox in the Box, we find the next Liverpool front three, explore Dean Smith's massive leap off the bottom of the Premier League table, and answer your questions about the January Transfer Window. Subscribe to our premium subscription for $4.99 per month or login to your account, to view the magazine.