#CROESP - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:
- Croatia looked to defend from the start
- Modric's attempts at man-marking expose Croatia
- Spain's off the ball movement
- Croatia COMEBACK after Spain collapse
- Football is mad

CC: @TacticalPad

Croatia looked to defend from the moment the game began.

Spain's attacking structure resembles a 3-3-4 or 3-2-5, so to defend against this, #CRO would have their wide players Vlasic and Rebic track Gaya and Torres. Image
While the Croatian wide players defend the Spanish wide players, Kovacic, Modric and Brozovic were free to remain central and press Spain's midfield passing options.

As the game went on, Spain was able to move this defensive unit out of position and create space to play in.
Modric would mark Busquets for large portions of the game, making him useless when #ESP were in possession.

In doing this, it created space for players like Pedri, Koke and Morata to drop into for quick one-two passes. Image
Eventually, Busquets would move into spaces without the intention of acting as a passing option, rather spaces that would encourage Modric to move out of position, creating space for Spanish players to move into.

This was how Spain were able to make progressive passes.
#ESP attacking shape was versatile in this game. In previous matches at #EURO2020 , Spain would primarily use one side for attacking, often the side with players more associated with goal scoring. ImageImage
A difference between this game & the Sweden game, for example, is that Pedri is freed of responsibility during the build up phase, Koke now has that.

Another difference? Torres is no longer relegated to ONLY providing width like against Sweden. He's more of an inside forward now
As mentioned above, #ESP can move the ball into the middle third thanks to Modric following Busquets around the pitch.

Spain will overload the flanks, forcing #CRO to move their shape.

Poor defending leads to ball progression & ball progression leads to chance creation. Simple.
Of course, tactics go out the window when Enrique made questionable substitutes that began Spain's collapse.

Busquets began to look unfit as the second half progressed, while Pau "Poor" Torres began to crumble under the pressure of having to win his 1v1 duels.
The Croatian subs brought the game to Spain. Croatia, as a side, are quite workmanlike by nature, happy to out muscle and out run opposition.

This, coupled with their direct style of play against a tired Spanish midfield was the recipe for such an exciting comeback.
We predicted that Spain would win comfortably. While an own-goal to give Croatia the lead, forcing a Spain comeback, followed by an 85th minute second goal and 92nd minute equalizer taking Spain to extra time is hardly comfortable...
Spain come out as begrudging winners. Enrique made poor substitutes, both upsetting the harmony of the team while also failing to replace tired legs in Busquets and Pedri, allowing Croatia to run them into the ground.

The only exception to this is Olmo, who beg the question:
Who can Spain be expected to start in their next match? Headache incoming for the person writing the preview for that one.
Croatia's comeback is admirable and shows that the route to goal doesn't need to involve pointless passing. They defended well, despite conceding three, and pulled off an exciting comeback that turned all the neutrals at Euro 2020 Croatian, even if for just a bit.
If you've enjoyed this thread, consider following and retweeting it as we will be doing post match threads for all the games during #EURO2020 , as well as match previews for all the upcoming match days on our website: pythagorasinboots.com/euro-2020/

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More from @pythaginboots

29 Jun
#ENGGER - 𝐓𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐓𝐡𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝

Key points:

🔴Sterling a world-class talent when in the mood
🔴3-4-3 pinned the Germans back
🔴Low's leaky backline bites again
🔴Grealish Game-Changer
🔴Back 5 helped English midfield (options)

CC: @TacticalPad

Starting lineup thoughts, the Saka decision was brave and the correct one as he can penetrate space inside and outside. Perfect for a counter attack set up.

Abit too perfect as its effectiveness ended up pushing the Germans back... Image
As we can see the beauty of the 3-4-3 is that by matching the German formation, England went man for man and the Germans were forced to match them.

This freed up Saka and Sterling from double marking and they were dangerous in the 1st half. Germany got caught out several times. Image
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28 Jun
#FRASUI - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:
- Lack of width from France
- Switzerland bully Lenglet and Varane
- Rabiot is not a defender; barely a midfielder
- Both sides style of play is a reflection of their mentality

CC: @TacticalPad

To accommodate Rabiot filling in at LWB, #FRA had to adjust their defensive structure.

They started in a back five but would have the ball sided wingback press the player in possession, joining the midfield line, forming a 4-4-2 as #SUI are forced to go backwards.
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27 Jun
#BELPOR Euro 2020 - Tactical Thread

Key points:

🔴Portugal Xmas Tree (Off the Ball)
🔴Belgium bringing their wing backs inside
🔴Portugal build up is awful (Huge distances)
🔴Time to move on from Ronaldo?
🔴Portugal right flank poor.

CC: @TacticalPad

#EURO2020 #BEL #POR Image
Portugal adopted a low block in the first half and it was a 4-3-2-1 (Xmas Tree) when they did not have the ball.

The plan was to make Belgium keep passing into wide areas and flood the middle so that KDB and Hazard could be locked off. Image
This did not work when Belgium rotated the position of their forward line, confusing the Portuguese defence.

More importantly, Belgium outnumbered in the middle by bringing in Meunier and Thorgan, who was then able to shoot from distance shell-shocking Patricio and Dias.
Read 7 tweets
27 Jun
#NEDCZE Euro 2020 - Tactical Thread

Key points:

⚽️Malen over Weghorst was a mistake, as Czech press and then dropping deep when Dutch got through made a physical presence up front important
⚽️Blind nullified and exposed
⚽️De Ligt 😱

CC: @TacticalPad

#EURO2020 #NED #CZE Image
The Czech man-marked the Dutch from Steklenburg's goal kicks adopting an aggressive 4-3-3 marking a 3-4-3. This made it impossible to play out from the back and forced the Dutch long... where there was no Weghorst as a target man.

This destroyed Dutch rhythm and confidence. Image
Before the sending off... Czech's failed to put enough men into the box despite dominating the right flank and putting in good crosses.

Soucek was not gambling enough, but after the sending off was another story as the absence of De Ligt have the Czech's confidence to bomb on. Image
Read 7 tweets
19 Jun
#GERPOR - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:

⚽️Portugal's Goosen was cooked - Semedo got shagged
⚽️Bruno is Portugal's Kane... flat track bully.
⚽️Germany's front three interchanged better and Kimmich stayed wider
⚽️Ronaldo 🔥🐐

CC: @TacticalPad

Germany built up down the right predominantly and switched the ball out to the left whenever they wanted to go for the kill.

When this switch was made, Havertz went central and Muller took Havertz position. This confused Portugal's defence and Kai's physicality is so effective.
With Germany's front three moving so fluidly compared to the French game, it sucked Semedo inside to try and help the bewildered central defenders and CDM's.

This opened it up for Gosens to get in behind in that right wing/right half space.
Read 7 tweets
19 Jun
#HUNFRA - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:
⚽️ Low block 5-3-2 plays a 4-4-2 diamond with little natural width = stalemate.
⚽️Dembele sub as predicted made a difference but Coman was a big miss
⚽️Hungary focus attack down the left

CC: @TacticalPad

Hungary gave France an awful lot of trouble down their supposedly rock solid right side of defence. Varane looked very unfocused and laboured and he did not marshal this half space well.

Hungary used third man runs to exploit this briliantly. Credit especially to Fiola...
Why did France struggle to score? Digne was a decent selection but there was no wingers or a presence down the opposite flank stretching the game. Pogba too central, Pavard can't bomb on consistently.

Mbappe doesn't go down the right as much anymore.
Read 6 tweets

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