Irish Premiership – Goalscoring Traits

Now my attention turns to the Irish Premiership.
13 games in, and the league remains relatively close, both at the top but also mid-table.

Again my data has been taken from Soccerway (www.soccerway.com), so is only as accurate as that is. Although I did some official checks on a few scores. To be fair to them they are normally quite accurate. But it is still limited data. So once again this is based on goalscoring.

Using Tableau I have visualised some of this goalscoring data, looking at the timings of goals in the games. The following mainly looking at the 1st half of the games.

From 226 goals across the games, the first half has seen a total of 94 goals, quite a high 42% of the total goals. However for the purpose of opposition analysis, it is important to look at this in more depth, to try and exploit weaknesses.

https://public.tableau.com/profile/carl.cunningham#!/vizhome/IrishPrem-TeamGoals1stHalf/IrishPrem-1stHalfGoals

The above graph shows us which teams are actually scoring in the first half of games. The size of the circle depicts the number of goals scored in the first half. So the bigger the circle the more first half goals.
You can also use the fiter at the top right to select and compare teams.
From a quick look we can see that while Linfield have scored 10 goals in the 1st half they have scored a greater amount in the 2nd half (26).

https://public.tableau.com/profile/carl.cunningham#!/vizhome/IrishPrem-Players/Sheet1

Player-wise, it can also be seen what players start the games well. Paul Heatley, seems to be able to start games incredibly, scoring 9 out of 10 goals in the first half! (Although it is important to further examine the data set here!).

https://public.tableau.com/profile/carl.cunningham#!/vizhome/IrishPrem-GoalsConceded/Sheet1

Probably most importantly in terms of opposition analysis, this graph shows the goals conceded by teams in the first half.

For example, if we take Coleraine this weekend, travelling away to Portadown, while both teams have scored a similar amount of goals in the first half. And there is nothing much to pull from that data. But in terms of conceding goals, Portadown have conceded 39% of their goals in the first half. While this may not be statistically significant, they have conceded 7 of these 9 first half goals after the 31st minute! This definitely stands out as an area for Coleraine to target! (4 of these also came in home games)

Cliftonville on the otherhand will have to be weary of Glenavons scoring prowess in the 16th-30th minute as this is when Cliftonville have conceded the majoirty of their first half goals. 5 of their 10 first half goals have come in this period. Cliftonville have also conceded 58% of all their goals in the 1st Half.

WSL1 – Season Review – Part 2

Following on from yesterdays piece (https://carlosamigos18.wordpress.com/2015/10/16/wsl-2015-season-review-part-1/), my next visualisation is based on the players nationalities.

Leagues (in the men’s game at least) are often considered to be strong based on the number of foreign players that are playing there. Take the EPL for instance, 64 different nationalities represented. Although the calibre of the players that are brought in needs to be high, it will be interesting to keep an eye on the number of different nationalities coming into the WSL as it progresses. Unfortunately I currently don’t have the data for previous seasons to see if there has been an increase or not (If anyone has this, please get in touch). But if this is not accessible, at least this will serve as a starting point.

Other things to bear in mind; again the data is from Soccerway, so apologies if your nationality is listed wrong.
And secondly, apologies to the Northern Irish, Welsh and Scottish, that have had to be lumped in with the English as the UK! But that is only on the map! (And out of my control).

https://public.tableau.com/views/WSLNationalities/NationalitiesDashboard?:embed=y&:display_count=yes&:showTabs=y

Now to work the visualisation, you can highlight the country, and also scroll through the charts at the bottom. Additionally at the top left there is a drop down, that allows you to sort by team, and will auto populate both graphs.

Now the data; Champions Chelsea operated with 6 different nationalities this season, with 21 English players. However it is important to look at the impact of Ji’s goals as well as Lindahl’s clean sheets on the season. Bristol at the other end of the table, had the most nationalities in their squad using 10 players of differing nationalities. This was the only club where the English were rivalled in number of players, with the English and Welsh having 10 players each, however the “Welshies” made more than double the appearances that the English did. Birmingham were the only team to have a fully English team.

The number of English players in the squad lists combined to make 155 players, with a huge gap before any others. The next most represented were the Welsh, with 11 players. Only Tash Harding outside of Bristol was playing. However with the promotion of Reading this will increase next season. The third most represented nation was Scotland with 8, again 4 of these were at Bristol, and possibly influenced by Kirk?! Following this, a further 20 nationalities were represented.

It will be interesting to see whether the league continues to grow and can attract big names from other countries. At the very minimum I’d be surprised if we don’t see a rise in the number of Scottish players.

WSL 2015 – Season Review – Part 1

As I attempt to learn how to use Tableau (Play about with it!!!), I thought it would make sense to use some data from the WSL 2015 season.

This is rather scarce to come by, but I have taken information from SoccerWay, and where I’ve noticed one or two small mistakes, eg, Nikki Watt wasn’t in the Bristol Academy squad list becasue she has moved on, but she has still scored two goals this season. Normally this would frustrate the life out of me, and I wouldn’t actually use the data. But finding this anywhere else wasn’t really an option. I couldn’t work out how to take the information from the FAWSL website, which may have been a little more accurate. I also added some of my own categories to the data set, mainly for the purposes of using it as a blog, and attempting to play with Tableau.

So first things first, a quick look at the goalscorers; Beth Mead led the charts with 12 goals over the season, with Jess Clarke and Natalia Pablos 2nd and 3rd with 7 each. Unfortunately I don’t have any data on assists to separate instances like this.

My first graph on Tableau shows, my perceived “Point Value” of the goalscorers. Simply the points they have earned their club. Yes, clean sheets, assists etc all attribute to the overall points gained, but this small data set means this is all I had. So in basic terms, if the player scores a winning goal, it is worth 3 points, and an equaliser is worth 1. If the team wins to nil, the first scorer is attributed with the winning goal.

https://public.tableau.com/views/WSLPointValue/Dashboard2?:embed=y&:display_count=yes&:showTabs=y

Moving over the circles, the visual should highlight the player, team, as well as their goalscoring traits. This allows us to compare how important the players goals have been for their team. Take Rachel Williams for example, scoring 6 goals, but converting this into points, it was only worth 1 point (not to say the goals weren’t important), yet from Izzy Christiansens 6 goals this season, she earned her team a remarkable 12 points.

The table below allows people to scroll through the goalscorers in the league.

As I said, just something basic, but the more out there for WSL fans to look at the better! Next part will visualise the nationalities of those playing in the league.

What Has Changed Man City Women’s Season?

Having watched Man City last season and at the start of this season, I often thought that they had some very good individual players, but that they were lacking some direction in their play, in particular in the final third. They were starting to be on top of their opposition, but something in the final third was lacking. Passing was slow and ineffective at breaking the opposition down. Results at the start of the season also suggested that things weren’t were they needed to be. Fast forward a few months and they are now challenging for the league with 2 games remaining.

My question is, what has contributed to this change?

Competing in the WSL for the first time in 2014, under some controversy, depending on who you speak to, the club made a number of signings that suggested they could be serious contenders for the league. Signings in Houghton, Scott, Duggan and Bardsley brought in a lot of international experience, and importantly an English core. At this time however, the club only had 7 full time players at the start of the season (to my knowledge), with the rest training part-time. I always thought this was a strange and difficult environment, but also conceded that training and daily contact with 7 players was better than only seeing them twice a week. Again the 2014 season had a mid-season break. Before this break Man City played 8 league games managing to win 4, but losing the other 4. It was during this break that I heard the rest of the players had started training Full-Time. This was probably the realisation that this was what was needed, as well as the direction the club wanted to go.

Unfortunately the second part of the season the League didn’t get any better, picking up another 2 wins and a draw, finishing 5th with 19 points (GF: 13 and GA: 16). However their excellent cup run, capped their first season in the WSL with some silverware. Ironically their only loss in the Conti Cup came in their opening fixture to Doncaster Rovers Belle, which pleased most people within the Women’s game. Impressively they didn’t drop anymore points in the competition, beating Arsenal in the final through an Izzy Christiansen header, winning the tie 1-0. Was this the beginning of what Man City had set out to do? Put a stop to Arsenals’ dominance within the Women’s game. In the league Toni Duggan and Jill Scott both finished with 4 goals apiece, not really enough to challenge or from an international striker. Duggan did however get 4 goals in 6 Conti Cup appearances.

So now that City were training full-time, had their first season under their belts, and also a Conti Cup trophy in the cabinet, could they push on? Could they compete over the course of a full season?

The winter saw more signings of UK based internationals. The signing of Bronze (From Liverpool), the versatile Beattie (From Montpellier) and Stokes (From South Florida Bulls) at the time meant that they had 3 defenders and a goalkeeper who were playing regularly for England. And depending on where they wanted to play Beattie (who I’ve seen play effectively up top and at CB), meant that they had a full international back line. Further attacking additions of Welsh pair Harding and Wiltshire completed their signings. Both having been in fantastic form for Wales, Harding in particular thriving in a lone striker role. The signing of 5 full internationals was always going to be an astute piece of work. Nikita Parris also arrived on loan.

Another “signing” that may not have been talked about, and may have been as important or equally important, was the move to the Etihad Campus/City Football Academy. For anyone that doesn’t know what this is, its Man Citys’ impressive new training centre. I would advise googling this. Following my previous blog on Liverpool, I mentioned the importance of contact time with players. Now Man City had the contact time with international players, and were housed in the most impressive training centre in the UK. Along with this, players are reportedly receiving the same treatment as many of the mens’ squad. People looking after bills (Manchester Evening News), advising players and professional help in all aspects of their career, is something not to be overlooked either. All these “small things” allow the players to concentrate on what they want to do, play football.

So how did this impact on their 2015 season? The first 5 league games before the break for the World Cup, was poor, with the club picking up 5 points. Parris (x2) and Duggan scored their only goals, with Duggan getting the equaliser against Chelsea. Man City had 5 players called up for the England squad for the World Cup, and we all know how that went. Without going into any detail on the World Cup, Bardsley, Bronze and Houghton were all selected for the All-Star team!

Post World Cup, everything changed. In 7 league games, they have only dropped 2 points, and that’s not including winning all their cup games as well. So what has changed? Did the club just start poorly? Has the FT training finally reaped its rewards? Coaches having more contact with their players? Moving to a new training facility allowed for further development? Or has the World Cup had a massive impact on the squad?

All of these could be as big a factor as the other. But one I want to look at is the impact of the World Cup. Just watching Man City play, you can see that they are a lot more assertive in their play and their final third play is increasingly better. In terms of goalscoring and points, this table explains a lot;

Goalscorer

Goals

First Goals

Winning Goals

Equalising Goal

Total Points

Duggan

6

3

3

1

10

Christiansen

3

2

2

 

6

Houghton

3

1

1

1

4

Parris

2

1

1

 

3

Corboz

1

 

 

 

0

Bronze

1

1

 

 

0

Harding

1

 

 

 

0

(Goalscoring in the WSL 1 – If Man City have won to Nil, the first goal scorer has been attributed with the winning goal)

It could be argued that Duggan was used as more of a squad player for the England team during the World Cup, but her goals since, have attributed to 10 points for Man City. This includes Duggan missing recent games through injury. England’s recent debutant Christiansen has also helped with goals from midfield, along with Houghton gaining the club 4 points after the break. These stats are only based on the League, and Duggan, Christiansen and Parris all have 3 each in the Conti Cup.

Of course this ignores the build up play and defensive play, but this is mainly due to the lack of open stats for the league. I’ve even had to check the “match reports” to work out the above stats. (If you don’t know me, I think the Match Reports and Team Sheets are shambolic in the WSL, considering clubs are striving for professionalism).

For me, this small snippet of stats has shown how the players in the England World Cup Squad have attributed to the success in the 2nd half of the season. To add to this Bardsley has kept 4 clean sheets in the second half of the league as well.

With two league games left and everything still to play for, the form team in the league are still pushing for a league and cup double. Having watched their last league game, it is worth noting that Natasha Harding is starting to look closer to match fitness and can be another valuable goalscorer. Keira Walsh’s performance against Liverpool, certainly makes her one to watch over the next few seasons.

What is Happening at Liverpool LFC?

(This is a somewhat less technical post by me, and also more critical, but lets see how it goes)

2 times WSL winners, and back to back title winners now sit 6th out of 8, with 2 games remaining.

If we look back at the beginning of the WSL, Liverpool spent the first two seasons bottom of the league, only winning 1 game in each of these seasons. Come 2013 and the team are the first to go full time in England, with Beard stating that he wants to mount a title challenge within two years (The Guardian). This was obviously to come very early, with Liverpool winning the league by 5 points, scoring a WSL record of 46 goals. Very impressive when you consider this is over 14 games! Impressive goalscoring returns from Natasha Dowie (13 in 14 starts), Nicole Rosler (10 in 14 starts) and Louise Fors (8 in 14 starts) making up 3 of the top 5 scorers in the league.

This change in Full-Time training did however see other clubs begin to realise that to compete they also had to be training as frequently. Any of you that have worked within football will know how important contact time is, and this importance really showed in the 2013 season.

The 2014 season however proved to be much closer. Now with teams following Liverpools initiative, the majority of the league were finally training full time. Results were now a lot closer, and on the last day of the season the league was still able to go to 3 different teams, with Chelsea, Birmingham and Liverpool all in the hunt. In the end Liverpool pipped Chelsea to the top spot on goal difference. Both teams finished with 26 points, Liverpool with a goal difference of 9 and Chelsea of 7. However, this season Liverpool only managed to score 19 goals over the course of the 14 games. Albeit, Carney only led the goal scoring charts with 6 goals, but Dowie (Liverpools top league scorer) lay 13th in the scoring charts with 3 goals in 14 full games. (She was never subbed off in the league).

So what happened to make this so close? Did Liverpool only run away with the title in 2013 because they were full time and had more contact with their players? So, 2014 it was more of a level playing field? Had teams worked Liverpool out? Were Liverpool not preparing well for their opposition? All these questions and answers are quite speculative, and only if you were inside the club would you be able to answer these questions properly.

But for me, it is likely a combination of all these. At the end of the 2014 season I managed to get down to see the first leg of the Champions League qualifier against Linköping. Yes this was new territory for Liverpool, and yes they won that tie 2-1, but I left knowing that they would be lucky to progress to the next round. Now, I knew nothing about Linköping, with the exception of having seen Harder play a few times in the Euros, but at a guess, I would have expected a Swedish team to setup in a 4-4-2, and basically play the way they did. I also know how tough it can be to acquire footage of different teams in the womens’ game (even at International level), but it looked like Liverpool weren’t prepared for how Linköping set up and played, even if their own performance was more important. The depth of the forwards cancelled out Williams getting on the ball and taking control of the game. Overall, I thought Liverpool were better on a player to player basis, but tactically they weren’t up to scratch. They lost the away leg 3-0 and were out of the Champions League.

So from winning the league, being knocked out of the Champions League, making a few signings, and also losing a few notable players (Davison and Bronze), Liverpool started the new season with being knocked out of the FA Cup. Then they lost their opener at home against the newcomers, Sunderland 2-1. The ‘no-hopers’ (which was ironically used to describe Liverpool in the past) had beaten the reigning champions in the opening fixture of the season. Liverpool really couldn’t get a run going before the mid-season break, beating Birmingham and Man City, but having lost to Sunderland, Chelsea and Notts County. After the break, things looked good with a 3-1 win over Arsenal, but again they couldn’t put together a run of wins.

So now with 12 games played, the club sit 6th and can only finish 5th if they win their remaining games, and results go their way. Again Dowie leads their goalscoring charts with 3 goals (although has a netted a lot in the cups recently), and Oshoala also has 3.

Now, in-case some of you don’t know, Liverpool do try to play an expansive passing game, so I presume a lot of their work would be focussed on themselves. How they are going to play, how they can influence the game and ultimately how they will win. Having watched them a few times this season, it has often looked like their goals haven’t come from this expansive passing and movement game, but often more simplistic moves. But could they be more prepared for the opposition? Something from my point of view which is crucial at most levels. I can’t claim to have seen all or even the majority of Liverpools’ games, so it might be a case of the result not matching the performance, and I appreciate that, but this has been over the season. Maybe something just isn’t working. It’s difficult to know what without being part of the club, especially given their recent injury list.

Having watched their most recent game v Man City, and while I appreciate that their focus is no longer on the league (with an important Conti Cup tie against Bristol, and also the important champions league tie against Brescia at the end of the season), it was one of the worst performances I have seen from a single team in a long time. YES, Man City are in form, and on a major high. And YES, the season is finished for Liverpool. And YES, there are still a number of key injuries. But, for me there is no excuse for this type of performance. In the past I have been highly critical of the style of Liverpools’ play, and also of some of their players, but I have also praised players, such as Bonner (who has been a high point this season) and Harris, but even these players were hard to praise v Man City. Bonner and the introduction of Zelem were the two players I would really mention, and even Bonner had a very difficult day, especially in the first half with an excellent tactic of Harding man-marking her. Stout could be mentioned, but it was very much saying your GK was your best player, because she had to deal with so much due to the disappointing outfield performance. Zelem to be fair to her, did come on and look like she wanted to play, and moved for the ball. Ryland gradually grew into the game, but that was as good as it got. Lack of movement and atrocious passing were key to this poor performance. As well as what seemed like the players attitude to the game. This may have been a one-off performance, but these are things that Liverpool need to be consolidating over the coming weeks with Brescia being the main goal. The game looked like a pre-season game for Man City against a team a number of divisions below, and Liverpool got away with a 2-0 defeat.

Although I have written this before the Bristol Academy Conti Cup tie, out of respect of the tie I have decided not to post until after it. A Conti Cup win might save their season, but long-term things need to improve, especially if the quality of teams coming up from WSL 2 perform like Sunderland have. Liverpool may not have the decorated past that Arsenal have had in the women’s game, but I view them as the club that has pushed the womens’ game on, they deserve credit for taking the risk and backing their athletes, which in turn forced other clubs to go full time. So hopefully Beard, his staff and player can turn things around.

Still the team can look forward to a semi-final Conti Cup appearance, as well as the all important Champions League clash with Bresica, and hopefully they will end this season on a high.

Skënderbeu Korçë vs. Crusaders 4 – 1 – Is it All over? – Part 3

Having focused on what Crusaders can do against Skënderbeu Korçë, its time to take a look at Crusaders defensively and how Skënderbeu Korçë attempted to attack.

Skënderbeu Korçë were a possession based team, who liked to recycle the ball through the back line and a midfielder dropping in deep, while waiting for a mistake by the opposition, or movement from the front three. I could show you lots of clips of the their defenders keeping the ball, and Crusaders press not really effecting their ball retention, but instead we are going to focus on the shape and organisation of Crusaders defensively. Now these topics are difficult to talk about without knowing the style, team instructions and philosophy of the team, so these comments are based directly from what I know, which is what I seen on the pitch. And before I go any further, I would like to point out I am quite defensive minded!

In this clip a number of things stand out; 1) The main point that I am trying to highlight is the organisation of the back 4. They leave lots of gaps between each other, whether that be gaps between both centre backs, or gaps between the centre back and the full back. Take the clip where Berisha comes inside and plays it through the gap between MacGowan and McClean, this is how dangerous these gaps can be. And this gap was made even bigger by MacGowan following the attacker rather than passing him on to his other centre back. 2) Again I am unsure if Burns was specifically man marking Berisha (although either way he done an excellent job on him), but he was normally dragged out 1v1, again leaving gaps, and similar was happening on the opposite side with McClean. 3) It looked as if the attacking players were allowed to stay that bit further forward, this allowed their wingers to stay come deeper to get the ball, and ask questions of both full backs, as whether to go to them or not. Even with some more defensive awareness this issue could have been cancelled out. 4) Along with the attacking players staying higher up the pitch, the midfield were generally slow to transition to defence, again making it difficult for the back line, and allowing the opposition a chance to pick up the second ball in front of the defence line. 5) As well as gaps in the defence, the line was often disorganised, either due to the movement of the opposition, or this disorganisation allowed the opposition to move forward. But more will be said about this later.

Skënderbeu Korçës’ General Play

As already mentioned, they liked to control the possession via their defence, and the question of how Crusaders press to stop this, is definitely something that needs addressed, but my focus is on how they move the ball forward.

This video is to highlight their shape. 1) Their danger man in particular, Berisha, hugged the sideline as much as he could. And Progni on the opposite sides done the same, although the clips show how the ball is switched to Berisha. This stretched the defence line, and asked the questions of whether it was up the full backs to go out to the wide men, or whether this is something the Crusaders wingers should be doing. Either way it was effective enough to create gaps in the defence line. 2) The Skënderbeu Korçë defenders can pass a ball! Especially when under no pressure! Which was a massive issue in these clips. The width the attacking players kept also meant the passes didn’t have to be inch perfect as they could come in and onto the ball.

Now I know I am making Skënderbeu Korçë to look like they are a bit of a long ball team, but I find these clips very important and the most important aspect of their game. They could read the game well. And by this I mean, notice how the passes were played when the defence is unorganised (as I have previously spoken about), has someone stepped up and broken the line or even dropped deep too early compared to the rest of the team? This was the trigger to play the pass, and try and get it into the space behind the defence, to the player already moving at speed. Again there is very little pressure on the the defenders playing these forward passes.

To be fair, a lot of these clips were from the first half, and things did improve in the second half, but it is important to consider these things and not allow them to happen again.

A Closer Look…
at Bernard Berisha

I like to add in some sort of player clip, just to show players involvements and what they are doing. In this case it seems fitting to make this clip on the number 23, Bernard Berisha, as I have mentioned him numerous times in this post. Skënderbeu Korçë wanted to play through him on the left wing, he was their playmaker and target to play forward to. 1) If we watch the clip closely we can see that, even though he is playing on the left (and actually creates a goal with his left), he is predominantly right footed. He controls passes with his right foot, he dribbles with his right foot, passes, crosses, etc. So at a guess, even though he didn’t have much of a chance to, he is on the left to cut in and shoot from distance. Its not to say he won’t use his left, but hes looking to do as much as possible on his right. 2) He does have pace, but more importantly a good change of pace when he wants to try and knock the ball past the defender. 3) Burns had a really solid game against him, and made it a difficult game for him.

One final consideration to finish this piece (and again bearing in mind I don’t know how the team wants to play), is to look at Sean O’Neills’ goal kicks. Their number 8, Nimaga, done a very effective job at challenging these long goal kicks, and Skënderbeu Korçë won 70% of the first ball from goalkicks. The second ball percentage was split at 50/50, but this includes two that went out for throw ins for Crusaders. My only query is that the defence only looked to offer a short option once, but it wasn’t on. Sean obviously has a big kick, but I just wonder if theres room to play sometimes, or at least keep it away from Nimaga and Shkëmbi, in a bid to keep some more possession. However, if its in his hands and theres a chance to counter…

I do have the set pieces, and all the goals, so if anyone wants to get in touch with me for thee, please contact me via any of the below.

Carl

e: carl@epconsultancy.net
t: carlosamigos18
w: http://www.epconsultancy.net

Skënderbeu Korçë vs. Crusaders 4 – 1 – Is it All over? – Part 2

So the main point in doing this is to try and generate some interest in analysis within the Irish league clubs and to show some of the advantages it can have. And of course can be a benefit going into big games such as this.

So following on from yesterday I have Part 2 on Skënderbeu Korçë.

Yesterday I looked at some of the areas that Crusaders may be able to get some joy from in the second leg. And I will now continue on with some attacking aspects from Crusaders in the first leg.

Before talking about how the attacks were initiated, there was one other factor that could be influential in the 2nd leg, and something Skënderbeu Korçë are sure to be aware of now. It may sound quite simple, but Paul Heatleys’ performance could be a big factor. (Not all the clips are just from Heatley)

This clip has a number of purposes, 1) it is mainly to highlight the threat of Heatley running at the opposition. This didn’t happen a lot, as when he did get possession he was often running onto the ball. But with some close control and determination he did cause the opposition some trouble. Yes, he may have been crowded out by the end, but in most the instances in this video he wasn’t able to receive the ball in an optimal position and had to cut back to get the ball. If he can get isolated, either on the left or right, and receive the ball on the half turn or just ahead of his stride, he can beat his man and get into good attacking areas. 2) All the clips show someone taking on a player (whether it be Burns, Magowan or Owens), and while I’m in no way advising the defenders taking players on (as can be seen in the videos), it does highlight that Skënderbeu Korçë were quite passive in defence. Yes they were in shape, but they weren’t active in tackling, so facing a player 1v1 could be a consideration. 3) Back to Heatley, when pushed further forward, his movement was excellent, especially into the channels. He also has the pace to get onto the end of passes and trouble defenders, as we seen in the free kick he won in the clip in Part 1.

Attacking Options.

This highlights the success from wide play. Again a few things to consider while watching (or re-watching) the clips. 1) Success was had from crossing situations! 2) Offensively and Defensively Crusaders had success in attacking crosses and winning their headers. 3) As previously mentioned, the channels and behind the full backs are areas of interest for me. And the mention on the previous clip of Skënderbeu Korçë defenders’ being quite passive in defence, their first man wasn’t very good at stopping the cross, giving time and space to get the cross in. 4) On top of this, their defence of a second man crossing was barely non-exsistent. They allowed their wingers to stay high in attack, and this allows space for a supporting full back, or even extra midfielder to receive the ball back and cross the ball in. Just look at how deep some of the crosses were coming from. 5) The goalkeeper, although there wasn’t enough of him having to deal with crosses, we do see him make a mistake on two instances, one misjudging the flight of the ball which nearly ends up in a goal. So it may be unclear as to whether these were momentary mistakes, but I’d still be challenging him on it.

Not everything came from wide areas, and it would be naive to think that this should be the only means of attack. So this clips shows a few instances of when there were attacks built through the middle. In comparison to those from wide areas, nothing substantial was created. But as previously mentioned, I believe the space to play is infront of their defence, rather than behind it.

That concludes Part 2, and concludes my analysis on potential areas to expolit and potential for success in attack. I will add a further post or two later, looking at Crusaders performance in the game, and how Skënderbeu Korçë attacked against them.

Again any comments, feel free to add them, or feel free to get in touch with me.

Carl

e: carl@epconsultancy.net
t: carlosamigos18
w: http://www.epconsultancy.net