Explaining the Tempo Setter – Player Role Analysis

The 'Tempo Setter' is a unique player type to our system, taking into account the possession-based players that operate in a 'number 8' position, and thrive when given the ball in the half-spaces. Youri Tielemans, Christian Eriksen and Jordan Henderson feature as some of the best within the role from an emblematic perspective, perfectly exuding the cucumber coolness required. But the likes of Thiago and Tchouaméni also stake a claim despite their extreme exceptionalities on the ball, due to the high influence they present in keeping the game moving along from a withdrawn position. Beyond the streamlined skill of Thiago, they tend not to be the flashiest of players in their teams. But 'Tempo Setters' are key to setting the tone of a football match, and conducting the orchestra from start to finish. Quite simply, without their class and composure in possession, the whole entire musical production could crumble.

Explaining the Deep-Lying Playmaker – Player Role Analysis

The 'Deep-Lying Playmaker' is one of the already attributed player types that we have adopted within our system. Also known by its Italian name 'Regista', the 'DLP' is tasked with setting the tempo of the match from build up to progression, all the way to creation. They sit in front of the defensive line as an 'Anchor', but hold a more offensive, progressive and possession-oriented role than the other two 'number 6' types within our 'Anchor' persona. Their role is in both helping create space between the lines, and then breaking lines, recycling play, or even changing the point of attack upon receiving the ball, so that their team can advance up the pitch, beat an opposition's press and seek spaces closer to goal.

Finding the next Jorginho – Tactical Analysis

Throughout his prestigious career, Jorginho has forever been criminally underrated. When moving to Chelsea under the influence of Maurizio Sarri, Jorginho repeatedly became the subject of media conversation over his role in not providing the same defensive gusto as N'Golo Kante, even though he was never meant to. The conversation sparked a new role for Kante that he still plays in to this day, where the Italian midfielder continues to operate as a quintessential 'Deep-Lying Playmaker' (DLP) for the team. Not only that, but it helped to reshape and restructure the conversation about defensive midfielders in the modern game, and the importance of finding players that fit together within a functional midfield unit. Chelsea have done a lot right over the past few years, but the balance they've struck in midfield between Kante, Jorginho and Kovacic has been one of the key highlights.

Defensive Midfielder of the Year – Interactive Vote (Top 100 Footballers 2021)

The end of year is almost here, and that means it's time for our annual Top 100 Footballers list. This year, you, the readers of our website, will get to have your say. Just simply see the list of nominees below, and rearrange the list to suit your preference of first to last in each position. When we rank the Top 100 Footballers of the Year, we take into consideration a player's form throughout 2021, their club and national team success, difficulty of league, and their reputation + performances in the year prior. You can rank based on any criteria you desire! Below is our poll ranking the best defensive midfielders in 2021.

Italy – Euro 2020 – Tactical Analysis

After missing out on the 2018 World Cup, Italy have now gone 30 matches unbeaten under the influence of former Premier League title winner Roberto Mancini. The Italian manager has reinstalled the faith of the nation at this summer's Euros, playing an exciting brand of possession-based football. After taking 9 points, scoring 7 goals and conceding 0 in their opening three group stage matches, Italy now look like genuine favourites for the crown. Here is our tactical analysis of Roberto Mancini's Italy after three matches at this summer's Euros.

Turkey 0-3 Italy – Tactical Analysis

Euro 2020 has officially kicked off, with Italy smashing Turkey to pieces in the second half of the opening fixture. The match was a fairly dull affair in the first half, with Turkey defending resolutely, and Italy only got going once they abandoned their attempts to have all of the possession. By relinquishing more control over to Turkey, Mancini's team ultimately gained more control in the final third and were able to unbalance Turkey's defensive structures to win the match comfortably 3-0. Here is our tactical analysis of the match.

Tottenham Hotspur – Premier League 2020-21 – Transfer Market Analysis

After a disappointing start to the 2019-20 campaign, long-time managerial legend Jose Mourinho came into Tottenham Hotspur to solve all the problems they had under Mauricio Pochettino (which were actually few and far between before 2019-20). Now after half a season in charge, Mourinho will be hoping to instill his philosophies on the team to … Continue reading Tottenham Hotspur – Premier League 2020-21 – Transfer Market Analysis