TFC's Tactical Analysis Thread

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WARNING THIS THREAD CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY BE DEEMED BLASPHEMOUS AND CONTAIN PHRASES THAT GO AGAINST PROPER FOOTBALL GEEZER GRAIN.

IF THIS KIND OF THING PUTS A BUG UP YOUR ARSE, WORDS LIKE FORMATION, TACTICS, METRICS, STATS ETC MAKE YOUR SPHINCTER CLENCH, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US THOSE OF US WHO ENJOY THIS SHIT TO IT.

So I made a post in the match thread about our formation last night - and, inevitably, I was told "How very fucking dare I question Poch as we'd won" and to get over myself.

So, seeing as Case Case has given us a lovely "tactics" topic tab, I figured I'd run the "cunthood gauntlet" and use it, start a thread where some of us sad bastards who want to talk about this kind of shit can, and those that don't, don't have to have their match threads impregnated with heinous talk of tactical titivation.

I just thought I'd put up a thread where we can discuss all things tactical, technical, statistical about games (pre or post match), Poch in general, Spurs in general, so we are not clogging up match threads etc and being called soulless cunts who don't understand the beauty of football.

Any fucking hoo, last night.......I think our energy was good last night (but then, it was always going to be wasn't it) and it was refreshing to see us press better collectively than we have been lately, but tactically that was still a but of a dogs dinner wasn't it?

We seemed to be playing a completely lopsided structure, heavily loaded on our left/ their right - bizarrely as this is possibly their stronger side? - in a kind of 42112:

Trippier------TA----------JV-------BD

Sissoko---------Alli

-----------------------Eriksen------------Rose
Kane----------Son
I just don't understand why we needed Rose and Davies. Why not just play an orthodox 4231 and have Rose as LB, Moura, Son and Eriksen behind Kane. Let Moura be the inverted AM, let Rose provide an overlap. Instead of having two FB's going the same direction, whilst also leaving one of our sides totally exposed?

I thought Sissoko (56/69 81%) had a good game by his standards (especially recently), and though Alli got through shitloads of the ball (74/86 passes 86.1%) there were way too many times when he turned backwards when he had grass in front of him, which I found a bit frustrating at times. And neither him or Sissoko zipped the ball quick enough, often enough. I know Sissoko's touch is a bit clunky, but I also thought Alli's was also too often last night, so many times a heavy first touch meant what he did subsequently was hurried. And this pretty much set a tempo for much of last night, lots of huff and puff and plenty of effort, but a definite shortage of quality, all over the pitch.

Rose also typified this, in his new forward role, lots of energy but so little composure and quality when it mattered, culminating in him pretty much wasting an almost identical situation to Sissoko's against Liverpool, if anything Rose was even worse, as he probably had more options.

We had the ball in good areas at times, good situations, but didn't really convert that into clear cut chances. 26 shots, 10 on target, an X/G of 2. And I think Eriksen's goal and Eriksen's ball for Moura accounted for about 1.5 of that.

We've got to get some more craft, intelligence and composure into this team.

It's also hard to evaluate too much when the occasion was clearly a factor, energy was always going to be high and Palace are endemically such a passive team, and not even passive aggressive last night. Just passive. This is Hodgson's default MO, and I think it's pretty pathetic, he's actually got some half decent footballers at his disposal, but every game, just about every opposition it's pretty much the same old schtick. Sit deep, hump the ball up to Zaha. Every season they do just enough. Is that really great management?

It was good to see Winks back, our midfield has desperately missed his metronomic qualities, someone constantly looking to get and give, pass the ball with a bit of fucking vim. Hopefully bodes well for the run in.

I think Trippier was OK last night, but wouldn't mind seeing Aurier or KWP get a little run now.

And it was great to see Eriksen twinkle a bit again. Not everything came off, but back in the 10 role, he was lively throughout, got on the ball plenty (50/59 passes, 5 chances created) pressed and won the ball before finding Son for the first goal, scored the second and played a lovely ball for Moura which could have been another assist.
 

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WARNING THIS THREAD CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY BE DEEMED BLASPHEMOUS AND CONTAIN PHRASES THAT GO AGAINST PROPER FOOTBALL GEEZER GRAIN.

IF THIS KIND OF THING PUTS A BUG UP YOUR ARSE, WORDS LIKE FORMATION, TACTICS, METRICS, STATS ETC MAKE YOUR SPHINCTER CLENCH, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US THOSE OF US WHO ENJOY THIS SHIT TO IT.

So I made a post in the match thread about our formation last night - and, inevitably, I was told "How very fucking dare I question Poch as we'd won" and to get over myself.

So, seeing as Case Case has given us a lovely "tactics" topic tab, I figured I'd run the "cunthood gauntlet" and use it, start a thread where some of us sad bastards who want to talk about this kind of shit can, and those that don't, don't have to have their match threads impregnated with heinous talk of tactical titivation.

I just thought I'd put up a thread where we can discuss all things tactical, technical, statistical about games (pre or post match), Poch in general, Spurs in general, so we are not clogging up match threads etc and being called soulless cunts who don't understand the beauty of football.

Any fucking hoo, last night.......I think our energy was good last night (but then, it was always going to be wasn't it) and it was refreshing to see us press better collectively than we have been lately, but tactically that was still a but of a dogs dinner wasn't it?

We seemed to be playing a completely lopsided structure, heavily loaded on our left/ their right - bizarrely as this is possibly their stronger side? - in a kind of 42112:

Trippier------TA----------JV-------BD

Sissoko---------Alli

-----------------------Eriksen------------Rose
Kane----------Son
I just don't understand why we needed Rose and Davies. Why not just play an orthodox 4231 and have Rose as LB, Moura, Son and Eriksen behind Kane. Let Moura be the inverted AM, let Rose provide an overlap. Instead of having two FB's going the same direction, whilst also leaving one of our sides totally exposed?

I thought Sissoko (56/69 81%) had a good game by his standards (especially recently), and though Alli got through shitloads of the ball (74/86 passes 86.1%) there were way too many times when he turned backwards when he had grass in front of him, which I found a bit frustrating at times. And neither him or Sissoko zipped the ball quick enough, often enough. I know Sissoko's touch is a bit clunky, but I also thought Alli's was also too often last night, so many times a heavy first touch meant what he did subsequently was hurried. And this pretty much set a tempo for much of last night, lots of huff and puff and plenty of effort, but a definite shortage of quality, all over the pitch.

Rose also typified this, in his new forward role, lots of energy but so little composure and quality when it mattered, culminating in him pretty much wasting an almost identical situation to Sissoko's against Liverpool, if anything Rose was even worse, as he probably had more options.

We had the ball in good areas at times, good situations, but didn't really convert that into clear cut chances. 26 shots, 10 on target, an X/G of 2. And I think Eriksen's goal and Eriksen's ball for Moura accounted for about 1.5 of that.

We've got to get some more craft, intelligence and composure into this team.

It's also hard to evaluate too much when the occasion was clearly a factor, energy was always going to be high and Palace are endemically such a passive team, and not even passive aggressive last night. Just passive. This is Hodgson's default MO, and I think it's pretty pathetic, he's actually got some half decent footballers at his disposal, but every game, just about every opposition it's pretty much the same old schtick. Sit deep, hump the ball up to Zaha. Every season they do just enough. Is that really great management?

It was good to see Winks back, our midfield has desperately missed his metronomic qualities, someone constantly looking to get and give, pass the ball with a bit of fucking vim. Hopefully bodes well for the run in.

I think Trippier was OK last night, but wouldn't mind seeing Aurier or KWP get a little run now.

And it was great to see Eriksen twinkle a bit again. Not everything came off, but back in the 10 role, he was lively throughout, got on the ball plenty (50/59 passes, 5 chances created) pressed and won the ball before finding Son for the first goal, scored the second and played a lovely ball for Moura which could have been another assist.
Couple of possibilities for the formation to ponder over :

1. Having Rose advanced with Davies behind simply to counteract Zaha, Palace most potentially potent attacker ? Poch doesn't usually do that. but a tweak to the tactics is good to confuse the opposing manager provided it isn't detrimental to Spurs own set up - and in this case it probably wasn't

2. With injuries, all of the starting X1 were long standing Spurs players who had played a lot at WHL - and Poch thought it a nice gesture to start them at the new stadium. Winks could have been in that group but was never going to start and play 90 minutes so started on the bench. Wanyama the same and KWP is rarely to start. Nothing to do with tactics though ! Might just be a co-incidence of course so not the reason for the line up

3 Just giving Pep something different to think about with a different formation.
 
Couple of possibilities for the formation to ponder over :

1. Having Rose advanced with Davies behind simply to counteract Zaha, Palace most potentially potent attacker ? Poch doesn't usually do that. but a tweak to the tactics is good to confuse the opposing manager provided it isn't detrimental to Spurs own set up - and in this case it probably wasn't

2. With injuries, all of the starting X1 were long standing Spurs players who had played a lot at WHL - and Poch thought it a nice gesture to start them at the new stadium. Winks could have been in that group but was never going to start and play 90 minutes so started on the bench. Wanyama the same and KWP is rarely to start. Nothing to do with tactics though ! Might just be a co-incidence of course so not the reason for the line up

3 Just giving Pep something different to think about with a different formation.
2. I'd be seriously concerned if Poch was picking line-ups on sentimentality.

1. What if Hodgson noticed this and just switched Zaha right, where we have a huge gap. *


* which reminds me, strange that Hodgson didn't target Trippier's side last night from the get go with Zaha isn't it, as Guido has told me every manager does?
 
WARNING THIS THREAD CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY BE DEEMED BLASPHEMOUS AND CONTAIN PHRASES THAT GO AGAINST PROPER FOOTBALL GEEZER GRAIN.

IF THIS KIND OF THING PUTS A BUG UP YOUR ARSE, WORDS LIKE FORMATION, TACTICS, METRICS, STATS ETC MAKE YOUR SPHINCTER CLENCH, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US THOSE OF US WHO ENJOY THIS SHIT TO IT.

So I made a post in the match thread about our formation last night - and, inevitably, I was told "How very fucking dare I question Poch as we'd won" and to get over myself.

So, seeing as Case Case has given us a lovely "tactics" topic tab, I figured I'd run the "cunthood gauntlet" and use it, start a thread where some of us sad bastards who want to talk about this kind of shit can, and those that don't, don't have to have their match threads impregnated with heinous talk of tactical titivation.

I just thought I'd put up a thread where we can discuss all things tactical, technical, statistical about games (pre or post match), Poch in general, Spurs in general, so we are not clogging up match threads etc and being called soulless cunts who don't understand the beauty of football.

Any fucking hoo, last night.......I think our energy was good last night (but then, it was always going to be wasn't it) and it was refreshing to see us press better collectively than we have been lately, but tactically that was still a but of a dogs dinner wasn't it?

We seemed to be playing a completely lopsided structure, heavily loaded on our left/ their right - bizarrely as this is possibly their stronger side? - in a kind of 42112:

Trippier------TA----------JV-------BD

Sissoko---------Alli

-----------------------Eriksen------------Rose
Kane----------Son
I just don't understand why we needed Rose and Davies. Why not just play an orthodox 4231 and have Rose as LB, Moura, Son and Eriksen behind Kane. Let Moura be the inverted AM, let Rose provide an overlap. Instead of having two FB's going the same direction, whilst also leaving one of our sides totally exposed?

I thought Sissoko (56/69 81%) had a good game by his standards (especially recently), and though Alli got through shitloads of the ball (74/86 passes 86.1%) there were way too many times when he turned backwards when he had grass in front of him, which I found a bit frustrating at times. And neither him or Sissoko zipped the ball quick enough, often enough. I know Sissoko's touch is a bit clunky, but I also thought Alli's was also too often last night, so many times a heavy first touch meant what he did subsequently was hurried. And this pretty much set a tempo for much of last night, lots of huff and puff and plenty of effort, but a definite shortage of quality, all over the pitch.

Rose also typified this, in his new forward role, lots of energy but so little composure and quality when it mattered, culminating in him pretty much wasting an almost identical situation to Sissoko's against Liverpool, if anything Rose was even worse, as he probably had more options.

We had the ball in good areas at times, good situations, but didn't really convert that into clear cut chances. 26 shots, 10 on target, an X/G of 2. And I think Eriksen's goal and Eriksen's ball for Moura accounted for about 1.5 of that.

We've got to get some more craft, intelligence and composure into this team.

It's also hard to evaluate too much when the occasion was clearly a factor, energy was always going to be high and Palace are endemically such a passive team, and not even passive aggressive last night. Just passive. This is Hodgson's default MO, and I think it's pretty pathetic, he's actually got some half decent footballers at his disposal, but every game, just about every opposition it's pretty much the same old schtick. Sit deep, hump the ball up to Zaha. Every season they do just enough. Is that really great management?

It was good to see Winks back, our midfield has desperately missed his metronomic qualities, someone constantly looking to get and give, pass the ball with a bit of fucking vim. Hopefully bodes well for the run in.

I think Trippier was OK last night, but wouldn't mind seeing Aurier or KWP get a little run now.

And it was great to see Eriksen twinkle a bit again. Not everything came off, but back in the 10 role, he was lively throughout, got on the ball plenty (50/59 passes, 5 chances created) pressed and won the ball before finding Son for the first goal, scored the second and played a lovely ball for Moura which could have been another assist.
This was the actual formation, so you're not far off
 

theromanianjackass

My one and only club
It's not about Crystal Palace game, but a pretty good site to read tactical analysis.
Liverpool grabs late win in game of contrary halves

In short, when we switched to a 4-2-3-1 in the second half, we started to play MUCH better as we all could see. I don't understand why Poch doesn't start as often as he did before with a 4-2-3-1 and tries the 4-4-2 diamond and 3-4-3/3-5-2 when the wingbacks obviously can't do the overwhelming job they're required to.
 
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It's not about Crystal Palace game, but a pretty good site to read tactical analysis.
Liverpool grabs late win in game of contrary halves

In short, when we switched to a 4-2-3-1 in the second half, we started to play MUCH better as we all could see. I don't understand why Poch doesn't start as often as he did before with a 4-2-3-1 and tries the 4-4-2 diamond and 3-4-3/3-5-2 when the wingbacks obviously can't do the overwhelming job they're required to.
That was a really good read. Cheers.

The importance of Firminho - and his intelligence and work rate without the ball - in Liverpool's system is huge.
 
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This was the actual formation, so you're not far off

It really was a strange set up, structurally wasn't it?

I can't remember seeing a a manager set up like that recently, so overtly lopsided, not just in application (ie sometimes you set up symmetrically but clearly have a plan to exploit opponents weaker sides etc so in game you encourage overloads when you have the ball but get back into shape when you don't etc) but to actually set up asymmetrically like that, and load up one side with two left sided players and leave another side very open is really strange. If Hodgson had figured it (like some good coaches might) and switched Zaha over, over if he'd played a more proactive line up (gone 433 with Townsend as well for example) then we could have been very fucked.
 

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WARNING THIS THREAD CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY BE DEEMED BLASPHEMOUS AND CONTAIN PHRASES THAT GO AGAINST PROPER FOOTBALL GEEZER GRAIN.

IF THIS KIND OF THING PUTS A BUG UP YOUR ARSE, WORDS LIKE FORMATION, TACTICS, METRICS, STATS ETC MAKE YOUR SPHINCTER CLENCH, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US THOSE OF US WHO ENJOY THIS SHIT TO IT.

So I made a post in the match thread about our formation last night - and, inevitably, I was told "How very fucking dare I question Poch as we'd won" and to get over myself.

So, seeing as Case Case has given us a lovely "tactics" topic tab, I figured I'd run the "cunthood gauntlet" and use it, start a thread where some of us sad bastards who want to talk about this kind of shit can, and those that don't, don't have to have their match threads impregnated with heinous talk of tactical titivation.

I just thought I'd put up a thread where we can discuss all things tactical, technical, statistical about games (pre or post match), Poch in general, Spurs in general, so we are not clogging up match threads etc and being called soulless cunts who don't understand the beauty of football.

Any fucking hoo, last night.......I think our energy was good last night (but then, it was always going to be wasn't it) and it was refreshing to see us press better collectively than we have been lately, but tactically that was still a but of a dogs dinner wasn't it?

We seemed to be playing a completely lopsided structure, heavily loaded on our left/ their right - bizarrely as this is possibly their stronger side? - in a kind of 42112:

Trippier------TA----------JV-------BD

Sissoko---------Alli

-----------------------Eriksen------------Rose
Kane----------Son
I just don't understand why we needed Rose and Davies. Why not just play an orthodox 4231 and have Rose as LB, Moura, Son and Eriksen behind Kane. Let Moura be the inverted AM, let Rose provide an overlap. Instead of having two FB's going the same direction, whilst also leaving one of our sides totally exposed?

I thought Sissoko (56/69 81%) had a good game by his standards (especially recently), and though Alli got through shitloads of the ball (74/86 passes 86.1%) there were way too many times when he turned backwards when he had grass in front of him, which I found a bit frustrating at times. And neither him or Sissoko zipped the ball quick enough, often enough. I know Sissoko's touch is a bit clunky, but I also thought Alli's was also too often last night, so many times a heavy first touch meant what he did subsequently was hurried. And this pretty much set a tempo for much of last night, lots of huff and puff and plenty of effort, but a definite shortage of quality, all over the pitch.

Rose also typified this, in his new forward role, lots of energy but so little composure and quality when it mattered, culminating in him pretty much wasting an almost identical situation to Sissoko's against Liverpool, if anything Rose was even worse, as he probably had more options.

We had the ball in good areas at times, good situations, but didn't really convert that into clear cut chances. 26 shots, 10 on target, an X/G of 2. And I think Eriksen's goal and Eriksen's ball for Moura accounted for about 1.5 of that.

We've got to get some more craft, intelligence and composure into this team.

It's also hard to evaluate too much when the occasion was clearly a factor, energy was always going to be high and Palace are endemically such a passive team, and not even passive aggressive last night. Just passive. This is Hodgson's default MO, and I think it's pretty pathetic, he's actually got some half decent footballers at his disposal, but every game, just about every opposition it's pretty much the same old schtick. Sit deep, hump the ball up to Zaha. Every season they do just enough. Is that really great management?

It was good to see Winks back, our midfield has desperately missed his metronomic qualities, someone constantly looking to get and give, pass the ball with a bit of fucking vim. Hopefully bodes well for the run in.

I think Trippier was OK last night, but wouldn't mind seeing Aurier or KWP get a little run now.

And it was great to see Eriksen twinkle a bit again. Not everything came off, but back in the 10 role, he was lively throughout, got on the ball plenty (50/59 passes, 5 chances created) pressed and won the ball before finding Son for the first goal, scored the second and played a lovely ball for Moura which could have been another assist.
Excellent tactical appraisal.

I actually thought that the Rose- Davies thing worked quite well in terms of controlling that side of the pitch but Rose’s final ball was generally poor, wasting some of the good opportunities that came his way including a gilt edged chance to open the scoring. When Zaha switched to the other side Trippier handled him ok apart from the last 10 minutes.

Eriksen was the reverse to Trippier. Much better apart from the opening 20 minutes or so when he too wasted opportunities. Maybe if it had been Son who did that you would have called it bumbling ?

I agree Sissoko was better. Quite Dembele-esque in breaking up their ( admittedly half hearted ) attacks. But diverting the ball away from Kane when he was in a great position to Score was a little frustrating. Obviously trying to atone for his miss on Sunday. Like you, I am not generally sold on Sissoko’s attributes other than in comparison to his efforts in the last 2 seasons . Vastly improved yes but his starting point was extremely low. His distribution is just not good enough for a top 4 team. But a good game overall.

Good to see Winks back, hopefully he can stay fit. If only Wanyama could get back to where he was before. Such a huge loss to our midfield.

Nobody has said much about Son. Right from the first minute he was urging the crowd for more noise and that showed a lot about his commitment to the occasion and it was fitting that he got the first goal. More than that he popped up on the right, on the left and through the middle. He is always a thorn in the side to opposing defenders . Personally I like him as our player of the season . Being obviously happy at the club helps too.
 
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WARNING THIS THREAD CONTAINS LANGUAGE THAT MAY BE DEEMED BLASPHEMOUS AND CONTAIN PHRASES THAT GO AGAINST PROPER FOOTBALL GEEZER GRAIN.

IF THIS KIND OF THING PUTS A BUG UP YOUR ARSE, WORDS LIKE FORMATION, TACTICS, METRICS, STATS ETC MAKE YOUR SPHINCTER CLENCH, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FUCK OFF AND LEAVE US THOSE OF US WHO ENJOY THIS SHIT TO IT.

So I made a post in the match thread about our formation last night - and, inevitably, I was told "How very fucking dare I question Poch as we'd won" and to get over myself.

So, seeing as Case Case has given us a lovely "tactics" topic tab, I figured I'd run the "cunthood gauntlet" and use it, start a thread where some of us sad bastards who want to talk about this kind of shit can, and those that don't, don't have to have their match threads impregnated with heinous talk of tactical titivation.

I just thought I'd put up a thread where we can discuss all things tactical, technical, statistical about games (pre or post match), Poch in general, Spurs in general, so we are not clogging up match threads etc and being called soulless cunts who don't understand the beauty of football.

Any fucking hoo, last night.......I think our energy was good last night (but then, it was always going to be wasn't it) and it was refreshing to see us press better collectively than we have been lately, but tactically that was still a but of a dogs dinner wasn't it?

We seemed to be playing a completely lopsided structure, heavily loaded on our left/ their right - bizarrely as this is possibly their stronger side? - in a kind of 42112:

Trippier------TA----------JV-------BD

Sissoko---------Alli

-----------------------Eriksen------------Rose
Kane----------Son
I just don't understand why we needed Rose and Davies. Why not just play an orthodox 4231 and have Rose as LB, Moura, Son and Eriksen behind Kane. Let Moura be the inverted AM, let Rose provide an overlap. Instead of having two FB's going the same direction, whilst also leaving one of our sides totally exposed?

I thought Sissoko (56/69 81%) had a good game by his standards (especially recently), and though Alli got through shitloads of the ball (74/86 passes 86.1%) there were way too many times when he turned backwards when he had grass in front of him, which I found a bit frustrating at times. And neither him or Sissoko zipped the ball quick enough, often enough. I know Sissoko's touch is a bit clunky, but I also thought Alli's was also too often last night, so many times a heavy first touch meant what he did subsequently was hurried. And this pretty much set a tempo for much of last night, lots of huff and puff and plenty of effort, but a definite shortage of quality, all over the pitch.

Rose also typified this, in his new forward role, lots of energy but so little composure and quality when it mattered, culminating in him pretty much wasting an almost identical situation to Sissoko's against Liverpool, if anything Rose was even worse, as he probably had more options.

We had the ball in good areas at times, good situations, but didn't really convert that into clear cut chances. 26 shots, 10 on target, an X/G of 2. And I think Eriksen's goal and Eriksen's ball for Moura accounted for about 1.5 of that.

We've got to get some more craft, intelligence and composure into this team.

It's also hard to evaluate too much when the occasion was clearly a factor, energy was always going to be high and Palace are endemically such a passive team, and not even passive aggressive last night. Just passive. This is Hodgson's default MO, and I think it's pretty pathetic, he's actually got some half decent footballers at his disposal, but every game, just about every opposition it's pretty much the same old schtick. Sit deep, hump the ball up to Zaha. Every season they do just enough. Is that really great management?

It was good to see Winks back, our midfield has desperately missed his metronomic qualities, someone constantly looking to get and give, pass the ball with a bit of fucking vim. Hopefully bodes well for the run in.

I think Trippier was OK last night, but wouldn't mind seeing Aurier or KWP get a little run now.

And it was great to see Eriksen twinkle a bit again. Not everything came off, but back in the 10 role, he was lively throughout, got on the ball plenty (50/59 passes, 5 chances created) pressed and won the ball before finding Son for the first goal, scored the second and played a lovely ball for Moura which could have been another assist.
Fuck yes great idea and great post
 
Bit late to the party, been a fucking hectic week. First visit to the new gaff and it was a great night. Great atmosphere.

I know a lot was made of Poch apparently outwitting Guardiola, but I felt this was more a case of Pep, as he sometimes does, over thinking his tactical approach and making a bit of a dogs dinner of it. he's often done this in knockout CL games and come unstuck, just as he did at Anfield last year, only that time he paid an even heavier price, and I can't help feeling if we had some better components we could have come away with a bit more than the 1-0 we did.

Guardiola went with a kind of 4231, with a more disciplined double pivot of Gundogan and Fernandinho, he also went Mahrez instead of Sane, left DeBruyne on the bench and didn't have B Silva available. Al in all, I don't think we could have wished for a better set uo than the one Pep gave us.

I'm pretty sure of he'd just gone his more usual 433, with De Bruyne and Sane, he'd have given us a much tougher time, Sissoko and Winks did a decent containment job for the most part, helped mostly by Eriksen (who actually saw more ball than the pair of them) but also by Alli a little too, but even then there were phases of this game, like much of the second half, especially just before we scored, where their midfield was well on top.

I really hope Poch goes with a 3CM system for the away leg, because if not, and Guardiola does (and I think he will) I fear Sissoko and Winks are going to get mullered.

Structurally, Poch seems to have come to his senses and ditched the bollocks 3cb/2 striker/wb system which has been fucking us up for weeks, making us shitter than the sum of our parts.

This was pretty much a return to the trusty old 4231, with Eriksen playing his hybrid role, seeing more midfield ball than both our midfielders, but also popping up in those forward pockets, and it was once again his vision which provided the key moment, playing a beautiful ball to put Son in, Son bumbled (as he is often want to do) but then did that other thing he also does a lot, which is twist and turn and belt one in.

The return to the more balanced structure meant we are pressing better from the front again, our first goal against Palace was a vintage item (Eriksen pressing and winning) and again Tuesday we were more cohesive and aggressive. The electric atmosphere also helping.

City started on top, but it only took our first threatening counter for their demeanour to change, suddenly they became more cautious, and though they always had more of the ball, the rest of the half was a really good game of football where we always carried a suggestion of a threat, if not the threat itself.

Second half continued in that vein until around the 65 min mark, when, maybe effected by the loss of Kane, we seemed to stop playing a little, but at least without the ball we remained competitive and limited City's creativity.

I saw Winks and Sissoko getting a lot of the plaudits, but once again, I thought Eriksen deserved more credit, he worked his nuts off to supplement those two and was also at the heart of most of our creative monomers.

Truth I think if wed had a better midfield out there, we could have done more damage to a very unusually insipid City. I also think Alli has been a bit frustrating last coupe of games. We really need him to be more decisive, incisive and clinical in good situations. he's a talented boy, with a presence, but he does fritter away some good situations with carelessness.

All in all though, this was a very decent performance, a very good game of football and the tie is nicely poised. If we don't get it right at their place we could come very unstuck still, but at least we've given ourselves a punchers chance now.
 

Five

Supporter
After City scored their third goal against us the other night, we got Dele and Son to swap positions. Dele went up top alongside Moura and Son went to the left side of our midfield diamond. Then when Sissoko went off, Dele partnered Wanyama in a flat midfield 4, and Son played on the left side of that flat midfield 4.

Curious about the logic behind swapping Son and Dele like that. Anyone got a theory for it?
 
After City scored their third goal against us the other night, we got Dele and Son to swap positions. Dele went up top alongside Moura and Son went to the left side of our midfield diamond. Then when Sissoko went off, Dele partnered Wanyama in a flat midfield 4, and Son played on the left side of that flat midfield 4.

Curious about the logic behind swapping Son and Dele like that. Anyone got a theory for it?
I guess he wanted to play with two CM's, so once Sissoko went off, it was either Alli or Eriksen dropping into CM. In a 2CM format against a team like City, Alli probably the logical choice (even if it is a bit of a hobsons) of the two, no?
 
After City scored their third goal against us the other night, we got Dele and Son to swap positions. Dele went up top alongside Moura and Son went to the left side of our midfield diamond. Then when Sissoko went off, Dele partnered Wanyama in a flat midfield 4, and Son played on the left side of that flat midfield 4.

Curious about the logic behind swapping Son and Dele like that. Anyone got a theory for it?
Is it as simple as giving City a different problem to solve without making lots of subs ? Dele is s different player to Son and vice versa. So Son reverts to more of a wing role rather than striker' and Dele moves to striker' role initially and then drops to cm with Llorente taking over as the onlly striker.

Might also have something to do with Son being able to make lung bursting runs from deeper with other City personnel having to keep pace rather than the CB who was marking him as a striker ?
 

Five

Supporter
I guess he wanted to play with two CM's, so once Sissoko went off, it was either Alli or Eriksen dropping into CM. In a 2CM format against a team like City, Alli probably the logical choice (even if it is a bit of a hobsons) of the two, no?
But before Sissoko went off-why play Son on the left side of a midfield diamond?
 

Five

Supporter
Is it as simple as giving City a different problem to solve without making lots of subs ? Dele is s different player to Son and vice versa. So Son reverts to more of a wing role rather than striker' and Dele moves to striker' role initially and then drops to cm with Llorente taking over as the onlly striker.

Might also have something to do with Son being able to make lung bursting runs from deeper with other City personnel having to keep pace rather than the CB who was marking him as a striker ?
But Son and Moura had been frightening the piss out of them. The pundits were saying it was the Llorente sub that made life easier for City's CBs, but we were not threatening them nearly as much before he came on. Now I realise City began to sit a bit deeper after their third goal, and that had a bearing on our attacking play, but still.

Also, in the second half, Son was used on the right side of a midfield diamond. I just want to know what the rationale was. When Son was moved deeper, we were less threatening. So was there a trade-off?

Did Poch think Dele was like tits on a bull on the left side of that diamond?
 

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