Manchester City 2-3 Manchester United: Narrowness and patient possession v. width and quick breaks

13 Dec
Starting line-ups

Starting line-ups

It took a free-kick deflected off of the cowering Samir Nasri in the final moments of the match to win the derby but in truth Manchester United probably should have won by a more comfortable margin. United executed their game plan more effectively than City, whose own tactics played into their opponents hands, and should have been 3-0 ahead but Ashley Young’s strike was wrongly ruled out for offside. Continue reading…

Everton 2-2 Liverpool: Superb first half comeback from Everton and Rodgers switches to a 3-5-2

31 Oct

Starting line-ups

Liverpool raced into a two-goal lead but Everton fought back well to pull level in a pulsating high tempo first half. The second half was comparatively low-key but it was more interesting tactically after Brendan Rodgers’ switch to a back three at half time. Everton pressed high, controlled possession and forced Liverpool to play on the counter but never managed to fashion the clear-cut chances their dominance warranted and it was in fact Liverpool who created the match winning moment however Luis Suarez had his would be winner wrongly disallowed for offside. Still defeat would have been very harsh on Everton and a draw was the right result. Continue reading…

Everton v Liverpool: Tactical Preview

28 Oct

Predicted starting line-ups

The clubs’ changing fortunes and the new dynamic in the Everton-Liverpool relationship make this an extra special Merseyside derby. Traditionally slow starters, 5th placed Everton have made their best start to a Premier League campaign since the 2004/5 season, which ended with a 4th place finish, and head into the derby as favourites, a rarity over the past 20 or so seasons. Liverpool, after a poor start, have now won four of their last six in all competitions, since losing to Manchester United last month, and appear to have gone some way to turning their season around. Everton’s continued rise and Liverpool’s revival both rely heavily on the outcome of this match. Continue reading…

West Ham United 1-3 Arsenal: Arsenal win the clash of footballing ideologies

9 Oct

Starting line-ups

Arsene Wenger’s side grabbed the win over Sam Allardyce and the Charles Reep school of football in a game which sprung no real tactical surprises but was nonetheless still interesting given the vastly differing footballing philosophies of these two teams. Continue reading…

Everton 2-2 Newcastle: An entertaining game which Everton should have won

19 Sep

Starting line-ups

Everton will be disappointed to only pick up a point after they completely dominated the first half and had two goals wrongly disallowed in the second during this thoroughly entertaining match. Newcastle made little impact in the first half and totally failed to cope with Everton’s loaded left flank until Alan Pardew’s clever switch to 4-4-2, with Jonas Gutierrez moving to the right flank to cover the overlapping runs of Leighton Baines, at half-time. This change got Newcastle into a game which they should have been well out of by the midway point and even then they still needed the officials to miss two clear Everton goals in order for them to take a point away from Goodison. This was a clear example of a result not matching the game itself. Continue reading…

Weekend Review: 3/9/2012

4 Sep

A brief tactical round-up of some of the Premier League games from this weekend including West Ham-Fulham, Wigan-Stoke, Swansea-Sunderland, Tottenham Hotspur-Norwich, Liverpool-Arsenal, and Southampton-Manchester United. Continue reading…

Liverpool 2-2 Manchester City: Skrtel’s late error gifts City a share of the points and both sides still adjusting to new systems

28 Aug

Line-ups once Jonjo Shelvey had come on for Lucas Leiva early on.

Liverpool showed that, on their day, they can still cope with the title challengers and only some poor defending cost them what would have been a deserved win against a Manchester City side still adapting to Roberto Mancini’s new plan B formation.

It was a match short on clear-cut chances but one that was made interesting by the two managers team selections. Continue reading…

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