#ITAESP - Tactical Thread

Key points:

- How Spain stopped Italy's build up play
- Italy forced to rely on transitions for attacks
- Olmo the False 9
- Morata's redemption arc is over

CC: @TacticalPad

Italy were able to grab an equalizer via a more direct route to goal.

In stark contrast to their style all tournament, #ITA were forced to sit back and defend, relying on counter-attacks for chances.

Insigne and Chiesa would target the space behind #ESP fullbacks.
The reason #ITA could not playout from the back was due to the aggressive press from #ESP .

The 3 forwards would press the 2 central defenders and Jorginho, while the ball sided CM (Pedri or Koke) would join the press.

This forced Italy to play direct during the build up phase.
Eventually, #ITA were forced to shift Verratti into a deeper role during the build up so that they could get out of their own third

Due to #ESP front 3+1 press, Spain went from being up a man in Italy's third to being equal. Verratti's role was helpful, but not very.
The difference between the two team's build up play is that #ESP ensured that they always had a free central passing option.

Verratti & Barella would man-mark Koke & Busquets in the build up. Spain knew this, and would drag their markers out of position, creating space for Olmo.
In every phase of play #ESP were constantly trying to create overloads, or at worst, go man for man & drag their marker out of position.

Spain are one of the best pressers at Euro 2020, followed closely by #ITA . Today we saw Italy struggle to press a competent ball playing team
It's no secret that #ESP were the dominant team in this game.

They would use the fullbacks, central midfielders and wide players to create numerical advantages against the #ITA wide defenders, while also maintaining a solid midfield 3 of Olmo, Koke/Pedri and Busquets.
Heartbreaking for Morata. He missed his chance to win his country over.

His redemption arc ended as quickly as it began. He scored the equalizer to take the game to extra time + penalties, but it wasn't meant to be.

It's a shame that this is what he will be remembered for.
Italy are through to the finals of Euro 2020. Having shown us that they can play beautiful football, we were reminded that Italy also remember how to win ugly.

They are deserved finalists. I do not envy their final opponent.
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

7 Jul
#ENGDEN - 𝐓𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐓𝐡𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝

Key points:

🔴Southgate releases the shackles in extra time, learns from 2018 (Foden, Grealish and Sterling to the right)
🔴Saka did not hold width - England too lopsided
🔴Kane in Spurs mode

CC: @TacticalPad

England made a blistering start, once again combining down the left. The mids went wide in order to progress the play and Shaw's wonderful one touch flicks and passes kept finding Sterling.

It soon got clocked on to and Denmark shifted across, flooding that area with bodies.
Saka was poor outside of the assist.

He was too narrow and did not run at Maehle and Vestgaard enough out wide. With Walker not overlapping, England's attack down that side was non existent.

Considering Italy's weakness is down the left - this needs sorting.
Read 8 tweets
7 Jul
A study of Southgate’s in-game pressing strategies and variations.

#ENG chose their moments when to retreat and go for the jugular in their win against Germany.

Expect the same against #DEN - a team that generally likes to remain aggressive.


As expected England sat back in the opening exchanges - feeling their way into the new shape and frustrating the Germans early doors (notorious for their fast starts and putting teams away).
Now out of the opening period, England begin to take control of the game. At this stage they had 66% possession and were winning the ball in midfield areas as well as at times inside the German half.
Read 8 tweets
6 Jul
An intriguing feature of #EURO2020 is how teams adapt their pressing strategy depending on the game state.

Teams rarely stay as a low block or press like mad men all game.

Here is a look at #ITA defensive actions heat map in different stages of their QF v Belgium.

In the first 15 minutes, the Italians keep it tight with the focus on keeping KDB quiet - the opposition dangerman. Image
There is a slight attempt now to win the ball higher up the pitch but most of the action takes place in their penalty area - suggests a lowish block and inviting pressure. Image
Read 8 tweets
3 Jul
#ENGUKR - 𝐓𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐓𝐡𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝

Key points:

🔴If can't defend - do not just sit back and expect numbers to work in your favour
🔴England press reset button at half time and go for the jugular
🔴Gareth's faith in Kane - Justified!

CC: @TacticalPad

Shevchenko turned what is a lightweight but proactive Ukrainian side into a low block 5-3-2 side. These players lacked the natural instincts and familiarity with the set up to make it work.

England had men who go inside and outside - Spain take notice of how to beat low block. Image
After the first goal, Walker did not get forward enough which did enable Ukraine to frustrate us in the first half as it allowed their defence to stay more compact.

Shame they failed to do this with the first goal.. Image
Read 7 tweets
3 Jul
#CZEDEN - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:

- Denmark's off the ball movement crucial in the final third
- Czech Republic lack central passing options in the middle to final third
- How Denmark exploits Czech Republic's poor press

CC: @TacticalPad

#EURO2020 #CZE #DEN Image
When #DEN get into the final third, their front three occupy the central defenders, while the wingbacks force the #CZE fullbacks to mark them.

The Danish forwards would drop from the forward lines into the middle third to drag their man markers out of position. Image
Damsgaard for #DEN in this example drops deeper, dragging Celustka with him.

This creates space for Dolberg to run into, while also pulling Kalas out of position.

Now that the back line is shifting, Braithwaite can attack space left behind defenders following their markers. Image
Read 7 tweets
2 Jul
#BELITA - Euro 2020 Tactical Thread

Key points:

- Verratti useless until Mancini's tactical change
- Belgium's pressing structure starts off strong but falls short
- Belgium thrived in transitions but nowhere else

CC: @TacticalPad

Belgium would press in a sort of 3-4-1-2/3-5-2. This was done so that Italy could not play through the middle.

The emphasis was on shielding Jorginho or Verratti while having the front three still able to press the Italian "back three"
We've seen the Italian build up structure all tournament. The issue with Belgium's press is that KdB cannot be expected to shield Verratti & Jorginho, while tasked with pressing Bonucci.

KdB was overworked when pressing, leading to a failed press.
Read 10 tweets

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