“Atletico started the match excellently, but still lost 4-1… Tito Vilanova chose Alexis Sanchez rather than David Villa on the left of his attack, and Adriano started rather than Daniel Alves at right-back. Despite the failure of the 4-4-2 at the Bernabeu, Diego Simeone again selected that system after Atletico’s 6-0 win over Deportivo last week. Miranda replaced Daniel Diaz at the back. Atletico started the game very nicely, staying compact, pushing up and restricting the number of chances Barcelona created – but eventually crumbled.” Zonal Marking
The football tactical trends of 2012
“In 1872, the 11 Queen’s Park players who made up the Scotland national side looked at the England team they were about to face in the first international fixture and decided they had to try something out of the ordinary. England were over a stone a man heavier and given the head-down charging that characterised the early game, that was a significant advantage. What Scotland had to do, it was decided, was to keep the ball away from England, to deny them possession and thus control the game.” Guardian – Jonathan Wilson
La Liga Review: Is the La Liga title race over already?
“After a thrilling weekend of La Liga action the title race may be over, but the chase for the top four, and the relegation battle are amazingly close. The big match of the weekend saw the top 2 face off, as Barcelona hosted Atletico Madrid at the Nou Camp, and despite the away side taking the lead they eventually succumb to a 4-1 defeat. Colombian striker Falcao gave Atletico the lead in the 31st minute, before a terrific strike by Adriano, and a Sergio Busquets goal gave Barcelona a halftime lead.In the second half the inevitable happened, and Lionel Messi netted a double to kill off any chance of a comeback, giving Barcelona a flattering 4-1 win.” Think Football (Video)