Matchday 4 of the 2021-22 Premier League season will forever be remembered as the day Cristiano Ronaldo made his return to Manchester United, and scored a brace in his first match back. But many more BIG things happened this weekend, including Crystal Palace thumping table toppers Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal picking up a big win in their relegation six-pointer against Norwich, and City continuing their impressive clean sheet run with a 1-0 win over Leicester. Here is our tactical review of Matchday 4.
Borussia Dortmund are heading towards one of their worst seasons in years, and it is in large part due to the tactics of their new manager - Marco Rose. But quite confusingly, they continue to grind out wins. Rose has set his team up to play in a diamond midfield formation, that suits one single player in the squad, and nobody else, yet somehow they've escaped complete desperation two weeks in a row. The Black & Yellows currently sit second in the table as things stand, three points off the top, but they are very lucky to be anywhere near that.
The Bundesliga continues to entertain as ever, with intriguing tactics as the managerial merry go round of last year settles down to a simmer. Matchday 3 saw Wolfsburg come out on top in a crucial match against Leipzig, Bayern smash Hertha Berlin, and a fast-paced five goal thriller between Freiburg and Stuttgart. Here is our tactical review of some of the key matches.
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!
How can a team with so much verticality be so terrible in transition? Well, welcome to Signal Iduna Park - the home of Borussia Dortmund. Dortmund will always score goals, but they will always make life difficult themselves by simply being poor in transition, and poor from set-pieces. That's exactly how 1899 Hoffenheim got back into the game not once but twice, and how they could have put the game to bed themselves had Gregor Kobel not been in such fine form.
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The Bundesliga continues to entertain as ever, with intriguing tactics as the managerial merry go round of last year settles down to a simmer. Matchday 2 saw Leipzig smash Stuttgart, Freiburg stun Dortmund, and Leverkusen rip Gladbach apart. Here is our tactical review of some of the key matches...available for our monthly and premium subscribers!
Tottenham Hotspur are a team in transition. And with all the surrounding newness, it's easy to expect (or, in some cases, hope for) complete novelty, an immediate replacement of old, bad habits and tendencies with new, good ones. Unfortunately, this forecast is more fanciful than fair. Tottenham Hotspur are a team in transition. And with all the surrounding newness, it's easy to expect (or, in some cases, hope for) complete novelty, an immediate replacement of old, bad habits and tendencies with new, good ones. Unfortunately, this forecast is more fanciful than fair. Squad rebuilds are a function of two factors working in dichotomy: time and money. The greater one becomes, the lesser the other can be. In this way, football clubs with immediate access to financial capital can regenerate a squad in short order. For everyone else, it takes time. But even as a slow reconstruction in progress, managers can face significant pressure in the form of tactics reimagined. Realistically, teaching and optimizing a new system of play takes additional time and risks subpar performance in the interim, while simple replication of previous methods will surely be seen as short-sighted redundancy. Into this predictable but unfortunate conundrum stepped Nuno Espirito Santo, a manager who recently traded Wolves’ black and yellow for Spurs’ white and blue.
SC Freiburg beat a bruised and battered Borussia Dortmund team on Saturday as part of Matchday 2 in the Bundesliga, with the Black & Yellows looking completely out of sorts in only their second league match under Marco Rose. Here is our analysis of the match!
Manchester City demolished Norwich City this past weekend in the Premier League's second round of fixtures, with Jack Grealish grabbing his first goal for the club. Here is our analysis of the match, including a special look into how the former Villa captain fits into the squad.