On October 13, 2022, Halifax Wanderers officially parted ways with Halifax Wanderers boss Stephen Hart. The former Trinidad & Tobago coach had been in charge since the Wanderers' inception in 2018, and won the Coach of the Year award for his efforts in 2020. But life inside the Canadian Premier League did not go as smoothly as planned in 2022, with the Wanderers stumbling down to a 7th place finish (in an 8 team league), as Hart's time at the club inevitably coming to an end. So with that, we examine Hart's tactics in his final season with the Wanderers, and how to fix the club moving forward!
I can't remember another game in my lifetime where four goals, in fact - 100% of the goals, came from set-pieces. I love analyzing team structures and shapes in traditional match analyses, and I could tell you all about Cavalry's almost 3-3-1-3-esque build-up or Halifax's stern 4-3-1-2 press. But ultimately, this game was decided by free kicks and corners. While that may be seen by some as "boring", on this occasion, all four of the goals resulted off the back of both tactical and psychological mistakes, more than worth breaking down in detail. So with that, here is our Match Analysis of Halifax's 2-2 draw with Cavalry, and our case study on how not to defend set-pieces.
If you're reading this article, chances are you love to analyze football. So allow me to help with your love for analysis with this call to action. Stop taking information from single-match occurrences, or single-match statistics, even statistics over time on their own, as a mechanism for making inferences about the wider context at hand. Recognizing patterns over time, and the wider context behind those patterns, are the essentials behind analysis in football, allowing you to more accurately assess performance, and improve upon performance problems.
We may be four matches in now, but the Canadian Premier League continues to show no signs of slowing down, with four goals scored in both of the weekend's fixtures so far, balancing out a dull midweek affair between Edmonton and Pacific. Ahead of the final two fixtures, here is our ongoing tactical review of Week 4 inside the Canadian Premier League.
No team in the Canadian Premier League has enjoyed a stronger start to the season than Pacific FC. James Merriman's team have been a well-oiled machine through and through, with a front four firing on all cylinders, and a cast and crew working behind the scenes to best support their fluidity up front. Not only have Pacific had a successful start from a team perspective, but as individuals working to serve one another within Merriman's 4-1-4-1. Here is our tactical preview of Pacific's match against HFX Wanderers FC.