It's that time of year! In this week's Tactical Thinker, we asked you to name your PFA Team of the Year, as though you were one of the pros making the difficult selection. After a countless number of responses, we compile the top eleven players as voted by our own stack of pros - you, the readers. Here is our PFA Team of the Year, from the TMS community.
This past weekend, Mohamed Salah claimed the Football Writers' Association Player of the Year, with more individual awards soon to follow. Individual awards are fraught with controversy within a team sport that relies on all eleven players working in tandem, and sometimes fail to acknowledge those that didn't do the flashy bits on a football pitch, but performed like their lives depended on it week in and week out. On both accounts, that's what often makes the Team of the Year an intriguing award to follow. When it comes to the PFA Team of the Year, it becomes all the more fascinating to see who the pros themselves had the most difficult time playing against this season, and who they felt deserved to be remembered for their role in making the 2021-22 season special. So with that, we ask you to pick your PFA Team of the Year, if you were one of the pros.
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
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.
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.
With 23 matches gone, Manchester City are evident favourites for the title. But Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool haven't been too far off, and still have both a game in hand and a game against City to play. The Reds have been brilliant this season, regardless of their competitors, scoring the most goals in the league and returning to their best under the return of Virgil Van Dijk, and other players restored to their normal positions. Through it all, Jurgen Klopp's team have continued to perform to the highest standard in all the areas expected of them, from their heavy metal pressing to meticulous methods of playing out from the back. Here is our tactical analysis of Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool in 2021-22.
Sadio Mane may not have as much versatility in skillset as Firmino and Salah, but his talent levels are supreme. Out of all the candidates, Emmanuel Dennis might be the closest clone. The Nigerian forward is just sheer speed and scoring power, which, without underselling all of this, is Mane to a tee. Then you have Rafael Leao, who is so much more skillful than the Senegalese, but lacks the exact trait we would most want to find in a future Mane replacement (better scoring and shooting accuracy). So with that, we have to go with...
As we found out, finding Mohamed Salah's replacement at Liverpool is a tough task. He's a strangely unique player, who does just about everything in the game to great effect. Nobody will ever replace his goal-scoring presence for the Reds, and that much always needs to be taken into consideration. So with that, we've done something a bit crazy.
Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah, the poster boys of a modern day football front three and all that can be accomplished, are all out of contract at the end of the 2022-23 season. The electric trio defined Liverpool's success in the late 2010s, including a Premier League and UEFA Champions League triumph, and a runners-up medal in both competitions. But now approaching or already hitting 30 years old, Liverpool need to start to prepare for life without their illustrious front three. So with that, in this tactical transfer series, we attempt to identify the next Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah. We're looking for players not only capable of leading the Reds to more title triumphs, but players young enough to do so over the next five years. Today, we start with finding the next Roberto Firmino.