Tactician’s Corner: On best options for Michael Bradley and the USA’s diamond MF

April 7, 2014

bradleymexico
“The United States’s 2-2 draw with Mexico Wednesday night included an overwhelming start that gave way to a blown lead, but add in a new formation and Julian Green’s highly anticipated debut, and it was worth staying up late to watch. For the first time in Jürgen Klinsmann’s time as head coach, the U.S. trotted out a diamond midfield, anchored by Real Salt Lake holding midfielder Kyle Beckerman, who plays the same role for his club team. Brad Davis and Graham Zusi, usually wingers, had more withdrawn starting positions, and Michael Bradley floated freely in the middle.” SI


Everton 3-0 Arsenal: Everton maintain their challenge for fourth place

April 7, 2014

“Everton outfoxed Arsenal with a surprise strategy and some clever movement. Roberto Martinez wasn’t able to welcome back Phil Jagielka, but John Stones has been excellent as his replacement. Ross Barkley was left out, with Leon Osman favoured – but Osman barely lasted ten minutes before getting injured, and Barkley replaced him. Arsene Wenger is without the preferred left side of his defence, as well as Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott. Aaron Ramsey was on the bench after three months out, alongside Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who had been expected to return. Everton have often won games late on this season, but here they took command in the first half and sealed the contest on the hour mark.” Zonal Marking


Barcelona 1-1 Atletico: a predictable pattern, and two great goals

April 7, 2014

“Atletico and Barcelona played out their fourth draw of the 2013/14 campaign – with two crucial meetings still to come… Tato Martino selected his expected side for this match: his ‘big game’ shape with Cesc Fabregas in midfield, Andres Iniesta out on the left and Neymar on the right. Gerard Pique didn’t last the first half, and was replaced by Marc Bartra. Diego Simeone also named his expected side, and Atletico also suffered from an injury. Diego Costa was doubtful before the game and pulled up midway through the first half. He was replaced by Brazilian playmaker Diego, who played behind David Villa.” Zonal Marking