Mihail Vladimirov

Tactical observer and writer.

Arsenal 4 Wigan 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Arsenal 4 Wigan 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

With the end of the season around the corner, both the Arsenal and Wigan managers kept largely the same XIs as in the past few weeks. For Arsenal the only change was Gibbs coming in to play at left back as Monreal played there in the previous game against QPR. Martinez named the very same XI and bench as at Wembley a few days ago. Although the game was hugely important for both teams, hence the excitement surrounding it, the …
Chelsea 2 Tottenham 2: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Chelsea 2 Tottenham 2: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Stamford Bridge hosted Spurs this week where once again Benitez made his usual rotation, changing three players for this game compared to the XI starting at Old Trafford few days ago. Lampard gave way to Cahill, who slotted alongside Ivanovic in defence – Luiz was therefore pushed in midfield. Hazard returned to the starting XI at the expense of Moses with Torres starting over Ba up front. Spurs also made three changes, with two of them based on some injury …
Tottenham 1 Southampton 0 | In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Tottenham 1 Southampton 0 | In-Depth Tactical Analysis

It was yet another glorious spring day and north Londoners Tottenham were hosting Southampton, in a bid to secure their position for a place in the Champions League.  Both teams had some key absentees and it was interesting to watch how both managers coped with them. For Tottenham Parker was injured and on top of the Sandro’s long-term injury Villas-Boas had a choice to make on how to construct his midfield. In the last couple of weeks we have seen …
Chelsea's Tactical Progress Under Benitez | In-depth Analysis

Chelsea's Tactical Progress Under Benitez | In-depth Analysis

Immediately after being appointed the new Chelsea manager, Rafa Benitez had to deal with several problems. Putting aside the ‘off pitch’ problems he encountered (which, quite frankly took the term ‘fan backlash’ to new highs), the Spaniard’s focus was surely casted over the tactical deficiencies repeatedly showed by his new team during the season. For a team of Chelsea’s calibre (given their spending power, hence the amount of quality players in their squad), perhaps it was uncommon to have different …
Southampton 2 Chelsea 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Southampton 2 Chelsea 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Pochettino had Hooiveld fit to start this game but Lallana was forced out of the game via a late knock in the days before the game. So there were two changes in the Saint’s XI from the Liverpool game. Puncheon replaced Lallana, playing on the right flank and pushing Rodriguez to the left. Additionally Davis replaced Ramirez, probably with the aim to add more steel to the midfield battle. On the other side Benitez made several changes, hinting his focus …
Chelsea 2 West Ham 0 | In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Chelsea 2 West Ham 0 | In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Rafael Benitez made four changes to his starting XI for this match, compared to the Europa League game against Steaua on Thursday. Terry was replaced by Cahill with Lampard starting instead of Mikel, pushing Ramires in the deep-lying position as the covering midfielder. On the flanks Moses replaced Oscar but surprisingly he started on the left with Hazard on the right. Up front Ba started. But if we are to compare the starting XI here with the team selected in …
QPR 3 Sunderland 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

QPR 3 Sunderland 1: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

Once again Harry Redknapp chopped and changed in terms of formation, selection and even strategy. First, the 4-1-2-3 shape that brought him success in the last game against Southampton was replaced by more of a 4-4-2, which looked like 4-2-2-2 given the wide men were playing on their wrong foot and looked to move infield all the time. Then there were four changes in the starting XI with only one of them forced – Julio Cesar remained injured, so Green started …
Tottenham 2 Arsenal 1 | In-depth Tactical Analysis

Tottenham 2 Arsenal 1 | In-depth Tactical Analysis

Villas-Boas continued to use Bale in a central position but made two other changes. Sigurdsson replaced Holtby on the left flank with Assou-Ekotto starting at left back, pushing Vertonghen infield. As a result Caulker sat out the game. On the opposite side Wenger largely kept his side, making only one change. Ramsey came in to partner Arteta in the place of Diaby. In terms of formation there wasn’t anything surprising. Tottenham again used the 4-2-3-1 looking shape, although it was …
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