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      Tactics geeks of the world unite...

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      Scottbot
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #720: Aug 23, 2017 10:34:20 pm
      I was wondering, as many as you were, as to why Klopp persisted with Moreno and Lovren during the Hoffenheim game and why he didn't make any changes. I started reading a lot and came across a brilliant piece of analysis by BabuYagu (RAWK-poster). All credit goes to him. It's a long read, but it's worth it.

      "Firstly, that is one of the best drilled sides I have seen in attacking play. They constantly found ways to create underloads on our right and then switch to overloads on our left - ironically the thing I was tipping us to do this season with our two pacey inside forwards.

      Their build up play, for example, would drag Salah out of position. Then when a midfielder stepped into that area of the pitch the rest of our midfield narrowed and shifted across. This created a huge hole all night in front of Lovren & Moreno and they exploited this time and again.

      At least - that's what I felt when I first saw the game.

      I then went back and looked at some of it again and realised Klopp just let it happen. I know that is a really weird thing to suggest but if you look at how strong we make our right side and weak we make our left by comparison you have to conclude that we are actually doing it, by choice. Also we direct all traffic down that weaker left side. That's weird too right, but go back and watch any 5 minute segment of the game again and watch how players curve their pressing runs right to curve left, this naturally turns opponents to our left side to play.

      Now, something that can hold people back from better understanding football is pre-conceived opinions and ideas about certain things and players. The end result is you look for evidence to support what you think rather than look at the whole picture with no theory to prove. So I want you all to bin those things you believe to be true about Liverpool and certain players for the time being. The reason being I want us to collectively arrive at some answers to make sense of what Klopp was doing, because I was somewhat baffled. I don┬┤t mean that in a negative way in that his choices make no sense like Hodgson, I mean that tactically there was a lot of very very high level tactical things happening in that game which will easily just pass over your head unless you are looking out for them.

      I personally know just enough to know that all the simplistic conclusions we arrive about certain players today are, in the main, wrong. (e.g. Bobby doesn't score enough, Lovren & Moreno are liabilities). I also know enough to be able to ask the right questions that might help us find the right answers. But more than anything else, I know enough to know that game was a tactical masterclass from two sides, most of which will have gone right over my head. I did see some things that I will share with you and hopefully others will have spotted some things to help us fill in the blanks.

      First of all - I think we we don't want to be attacked down our right flank and over compensate for that to discourage it from happening. One possible reason could be that Klopp mentions in the press multiple times how weak TAA is defensively makes me wonder exactly how true that is and to what extent we are minimizing his work defensively? 

      But then if you look at last season, Milner got through almost twice as much work defensively as Clyne also and I am sure nobody would suggest Clyne is a weak full back defensively that needs protecting. Therefore I believe this is our first pressing trap. Klopp did the same at Dortmund, creating a hole in his formation on one side of the pitch, staggering his formation around it and then ambushing the ball as soon as it was played in that area.

      If you put aside any opinions on our players for a minute and just look at this tactically. Just look at what we did and ask why.



      This is really interesting for example. Most believe Moreno is a liability, and yet we get Mane to offer him literally no support at all. Look at Mane v Kaderábek (RWB) on our left compared to Salah v Zuber (LWB) on our right. It was very clear watching the game that Salah would stay goal side of Zuber all night and not let him get at TAA. Therefore there was never an overload on TAA on that side. This was especially weird because Zuber is right footed. If you want any wing back to have time on the ball it would be the inverted one who is likely to come back in on his weak foot, or play floated, aimless left football balls into the box. I semi expected us to direct traffic down our right for that reason and yet we did the exact opposite. We both weakened the left side by leaving Mane high and wide against Bicakcic (their RCB). We also directed all attacks down that weaker side.

      We did this by congesting play on the right to such an extent that attacking our left was the only viable option. Therefore the most common pattern of the game was for them to slowly attack down our right, wait for our midfield to filter across gradually, and then switch to Kaderábek who stayed as wide as possible to either always be free for a switch or, when Moreno shifted across to negate this, would leave a huge hole in the left half space between Lovren and Moreno for someone (Either Rupp, Gnabry or Kramaric) to attack. In the end (probably by Klopp's instruction) he kept his starting position narrow to minimise the impact of those runs off the back of Lovren. So while the heat maps for the game will be more to the right side, it's quite misleading as in reality, all their attacks happened on the left.

      Regardless of your feelings on individual players, it's clear we decided to overload Lovren and Moreno, not Hoffenheim. Hoffenheim didn't leave Mane high up the pitch and Salah deep protecting TAA. When the a midfielder shifted up the pitch to press - we narrowed and protected the right, not the left where we just left a hole. That has to be a tactical decision, right? So Can and Salah both screened brilliantly in front of TAA. Moreno had no support at all from anybody all night. And it's easy to see and make a tactical shift to prevent it, Klopp chose not to. Which means he wanted it to happen. Why? I have no idea. It's incredibly risky and placing an exceptionally large amount of faith in Lovren and Moreno to sort that out between them.



      My instinct after the game also was that man of the match was Mane. He murdered Bicakcic all night long. But then it's now quite easy to see why Mane was man of the match. He had no defensive responsibility at all. His only job last night was to stay high up the pitch and destroy Bicakcic all night. He did that perfectly but we do tend to focus on positive attacking play when making a call for man of the match so clearly Mane was always going to be that guy based on the tactical decisions we made. He was excellent though and showed once again why he would be handful for any side to have to deal with. As much as we left their RWB to exploit our left side, the likewise didn't pull him back to watch Mane at any point during the game either. So both sides were willing to take a risk on that side of the pitch.

      Risk vs Reward



      I therefore propose that the above was the ultimate goal of Klopp last night. He accepted the that Hoffenheim are a good side and attack in numbers. He accepted they would get chances against us and therefore tried to have an element of control over where and what type of chances Hoffenheim could create. He tried to control where they would have their underloads and overloads. We can infer this by the tactical decisions of Mane, Salah, the midfield 3 & Moreno. The boxes above on the heat map are the consequence of our tactics. 

      White: Basically the white square is the area of the pitch we wanted them to have no attacks in. We put a wall up in front of the box here that they found almost impermeable. Ironically, their goal came from the one time we allowed them any space here at all which does in a way support this theory that this area was the most important part of the pitch to protect.

      Black: The black square is the "zone of death". It┬┤s the area of the pitch that has the most possession won by Liverpool in any specific area (the image on the right is all Liverpool possession wins) and also had the least touches by a Hoffenheim player in comparison. This is the pressing trap I referred to before. Anything into this left half space we ambushed hard and aggressive to win the ball and set Mane away.

      Red: The red squares is the risk vs reward. We accepted they would have some success on our left due to leaving Mane up field and our midfield shifting right. However, we banked on Mane being far more dangerous attacking them in their red square compared to them attacking ours and this proved to be the case. It was a very ballsy strategy by Klopp but with away goals being so valuable, it's clearly a risk he was willing to accept for the reward of some away goals to take back to Anfield. I suspect he won't be so adventurous in the home leg.



      Their player who actually impressed me most was Demirbay. I loved how Hoffenheim used a different runner each time off the back of Lovren. That is really hard to adjust to because, for example, if Kramaric is the one attacking behind Lovren, Lovren starts instinctively looking for him on the pitch and making sure he can always see him. But Kramaric, Rupp & Gnabry were all taking turns to make that run and they set it up in different ways each time too. Demirbay was always the one who would find those runs with some quick passing or switch passes. He also put in a huge shift defensively too. I worried about the Gnabry-Kramaric-Rupp-Demirbay four in the middle of the pitch defensively. They are all more attack minded than defence and thought without a proper six behind them we would expose them here, but we never really did. Not sure whether that was a failing of our midfield in terms of creativity (we miss Lallana hard!) or just good play by Demirbay & Rupp... I suspect a little of both. I did call Demirbay as the key man before the game and he was every bit as dangerous as I feared - although we didn't really see his direct free kicks and long range shooting - yet.



      A word on Mignolet. I was worried before the game that the Migs who ended the game on Saturday would be the Migs who started this one looking a little rattled to say the least. But he was excellent. I have seen people discredit that penalty save but I remember a goalkeeper once saying that the easy penalty saves are usually a result of bravery to stand up and not make the penalty taker's mind up for him. If the taker is running up to the ball waiting for the keeper to move first, he ends up fluffing the penalty if the keeper stands tall. So well done Mr Mignolet and he built a very confidence performance on that moment of bravery.



      I want to end talking a little about Trent Alexander-Arnold. I thought he was excellent last night. I am starting to realise more and more we don't need Clyne. He's an outstanding defensive full back who can attack if needed, playing in a system which probably doesn't need one. Throughout last season and the beginning of this one, it┬┤s clear we encourage attacks down our left side where we position our most aggressive defenders to attack the ball and launch counters. Lallana is usually on the right who is excellent at pressing play away from his side of the pitch. Gini on the left of midfield is probably our best transitions player in the squad who will be the midfielder to either initiate turnovers or launch counter on that side of the pitch. This would also make sense why Keita was targeted even more as in terms of tackles, interceptions and recoveries he is world class and does everything at high pace. He would be a perfect transition player for us on the left of midfield.

      Therefore TAA's defensive weaknesses that Klopp mentions are rarely exposed. Last night for example, he was beaten a few times and was responsible for our goal in the relatively small number of times he was exposed but he offers us so much going forward that makes that an acceptable risk to take. He beat his man four times down the left side of the pitch yesterday for example. To put that into perspective, Mane averaged 2.5 completed dribbles per game last season on that side of the pitch. And this is important because against a low block, attacking defenders with the ball and committing them to an action is the best way to break it down. Especially with full backs as it┬┤s a run from a deeper area, coming in at an angle and leaves the better attacking players free to move off him into the space his dribble creates. He created 2 goalscoring opportunities at the weekend against Watford, for example. To put that into perspective, Mane was averaging 1.6 chances created per game last season.

      That doesn't mean I am advocating we get rid of Clyne or that he shouldn't be first choice now. More that how you can see in our system someone like TAA will be far more useful to us than Clyne in the long run. Once he gets his defensive game to the level Klopp seems to have set for him, I suspect we'll see him become a permanent fixture in the side. Exciting times for the kid."

      Credit to BabuYagu - RAWK-poster

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      Thought it might make for some interesting discussion regarding Lovren, Moreno and Wijnaldum. In the Moreno player thread I posted another post by BabuYagu with more information on Moreno and the way he plays / why Klopp played / plays him.

      Really interesting read that and good on ya for bumping this thread, it's my favourite on the board! We certainly saw elements of that again this evening with Mane staying high and wide (particularly in the last 20 minutes) and Moreno exposed. Quite often it was simply one half decent pass or a quick switch and they were away on that left hand side (their right). Not sure I like to see such a tactic in a game like tonight when we're 3-1 up and another goal for them could have given them unnecessary hope and set up a difficult finish.
      fishpie
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #721: Aug 24, 2017 08:48:26 am
      I was wondering, as many as you were, as to why Klopp persisted with Moreno and Lovren during the Hoffenheim game and why he

      Really makes you think, the post. Not what I quoted that's to link to the post, thanks, that was a good read. Don't know if I believe it totally or not. but, it's something to consider.
      Only read it because Scottbot mentioned it and I was intrigued so thanks Scottbot too.
      harrydunn08
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #722: Aug 31, 2017 09:43:58 pm
      Assuming we stick to our guns, and the wee c**t is not sold to Barca in the next 24 hours -- our transfer business suggests a potential switch of formation from the 4-3-3 that we saw most of last season to the 4-2-3-1 that J├╝rgen used most often at Dortmund.  My reasoning is that, we've only got 3 senior CM's -- Can, Hendo, and Gini.  Lucas has gone, Milner isn't a real CM, and Grujic is still unproven.  Also, Lallana and Coutinho are both CAM's rather than true CM's.  Basically, this means that the three of Can, Hendo, and Gini will rotate at CM (with Grujic and Milner likely to get League Cup and FA Cup games).  Coutinho will rotate with Lallana at the #10.  The Ox will rotate with Mane and Salah on the wings.  Studge will rotate with Firmino at #9.  Sound about right?
      AZPatriot
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #723: Aug 31, 2017 09:46:42 pm
      Assuming we stick to our guns, and the wee c**t is not sold to Barca in the next 24 hours -- our transfer business suggests a potential switch of formation from the 4-3-3 that we saw most of last season to the 4-2-3-1 that J├╝rgen used most often at Dortmund.  My reasoning is that, we've only got 3 senior CM's -- Can, Hendo, and Gini.  Lucas has gone, Milner isn't a real CM, and Grujic is still unproven.  Also, Lallana and Coutinho are both CAM's rather than true CM's.  Basically, this means that the three of Can, Hendo, and Gini will rotate at CM (with Grujic and Milner likely to get League Cup and FA Cup games).  Coutinho will rotate with Lallana at the #10.  The Ox will rotate with Mane and Salah on the wings.  Studge will rotate with Firmino at #9.  Sound about right?

      Think your going to see more license to roam forward for both Gini and Can as well as keeping the 4-3-3.

      We shall see.
      trebor12
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #724: Sep 01, 2017 04:23:37 pm
      I think we look alot stronger now from midfield up. OK we didn't get the strengthening we wanted at CB but like some have mentioned on here, the way we play we do look likely to concede goals. Personally we could have a walking brick wall playing at the back and we would still concede. The important thing now is to keep players fit. I'm glad the OX joined us as he gives us options in multiple positions. So I think we look strong and the way our forward line looks there's lots to look forward to.
      Oh and I forgot to mention we still have that Brazilian little sh*t if he ever decides to play for us again...personally I'd bench the c**t till we need him desperately or use him off the bench to maybe give us another option. I don't believe that a player, who obviously doesn't want to be at our great club, should be welcomed back with open arms even if he is a very good player....make him sweat specially in a world cup year.
      bazspeedman
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #725: Sep 01, 2017 04:36:07 pm
      I believe we now have the best attacking options in terms of depth this club has ever seen.

      No we don't have a world class striker of the Suarez/Nando caliber but Bobby is growing more and more in to the role of top class striker.

      Our wide and attacking midfield options are fantastic we will trouble any defence in the world.

      When we sign VVD (which we will), and Keita links up we will have the strongest squad I have seen in my lifetime.

      Klopp really has done wonders for this club since joining.
      AZPatriot
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #726: Sep 01, 2017 07:03:20 pm
      Interesting final stats from last season.

      Premier League 2016-17 Defence Stats


         Team   Goals against   Avg per game   Clean Sheets
      1   Tottenham Hotspur   26   0.68   17
      2   Manchester United   29   0.76   17
      3   Chelsea   33   0.87   16
      4   Manchester City   39   1.03   12
      5   Liverpool   42   1.11   12
      6   Arsenal   44   1.16   13
      7   Everton   44   1.16   13
      8   Southampton   48   1.26   14
      9   West Bromwich Albion   51   1.34   6
      10   Middlesbrough   53   1.39   11
      11   Burnley   55   1.45   10
      12   Stoke City   56   1.47   11
      13   Crystal Palace   63   1.66   7
      14   Leicester City   63   1.66   9
      15   West Ham United   64   1.68   10
      16   Bournemouth   67   1.76   10
      17   Watford   68   1.79   7
      18   Sunderland   69   1.82   6
      19   Swansea City   70   1.84   8
      20   Hull City   80   2.11   5


      Best Attack
      Team   Goals scored   Avg per game   Top scorer
      1   Spurs   86   2.26   Kane
      2   Chelsea   85   2.24   Costa
      3   Man City   80   2.11   Aguero
      4   Liverpool   78   2.05   Coutinho
      5   Arsenal   77   2.03   Sanchez
      6   Everton   62   1.63   Lukaku
      7   Bournemouth   55   1.45   King
      8   Man Utd   54   1.42   Ibrahimovic
      9   Crystal Palace   50   1.32   Benteke
      10   Leicester   48   1.26   Vardy
      11   West Ham   47   1.24   Antonio
      12   Swansea   45   1.18   Llorente
      13   West Brom   43   1.13   Rondon
      14   Southampton   41   1.08   Redmond
      15   Stoke   41   1.08   Crouch
      16   Watford   40   1.05   Deeney
      17   Burnley   39   1.03   Vokes
      18   Hull City   37   0.97   Snodgrass
      19   Sunderland   29   0.76   Defoe
      20   Middlesbrough   27   0.71   Negredo
      Danzel
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #727: Sep 12, 2017 11:31:27 pm
      I read a lot of posts by people wondering / questioning Klopp's substitutions at half time for our game at the Etihad. For me it did make sense to take of Salah and I'll try to give my point of view with regards to why Klopp took of Salah and why he changed our formation. This is all just my own thinking, it might be completely wrong. Feel free to disagree and add your own views and ideas.

      All I'm about to say really only applies from the start of the second half to the moment when we conceded the 3rd goal and he took off Firmino. Everything that happened after that, isn't really worth discussing. For me, that was the moment Klopp 'gave up', not during the break when we were down 2-0. This is about the idea behind the changes, not really about the execution.

      The main debate was why we didn't use two banks of four and try to sit deep rather than go to three at the back with wingbacks and still try to maintain a relatively 'high' line.



      I know it looks a little amateurish, but it's the best I can do and it helps visualize things.

      If you look at the players we had left on the pitch and the bench, we just weren't able to play two banks of four. For that to be effective, you need different players (Preferably two 6's and two quick wingers). The way we defend and set up, is to control space by pushing up high on the pitch and keeping the pitch as small as possible, control the passing lines and counterpress. To go from one extreme, front foot defending, to another, sitting deep in two banks of four, is a big difference that can't be adjusted in a break of 15 minutes. We train on fast transitions day in day out. From defence to attack and the other way around in a matter of seconds. We don't train on 'parking the bus'. Teams that specialize in this train on it every week, with eleven players and a completely different set of players. Even these teams tend to struggle with the two banks of four set up against City, certainly at the Etihad.

      There are three main talking points:

      1. The Salah -> Chamberlain substitution

      While Salah was indeed the one who offered the biggest threat on the pitch by trying to get him in 1 vs 1 situations with Otamendi, that threat would have easily been nullified had we reverted to a 4-4-1. Salah isn't good enough defensively to play this deep as a 'traditional' right winger and he would have been too close to City's wingbacks. He would have to start his runs from too deep and be up against it with very little support other than Firmino. We didn't have the runners in midfield to offer support without leaving the midfield wide open (Henderson or Can in this case).

      2. City creating overloads in wide areas

      This is actually what we struggled with the most. City vacated the centre of midfield. Only Fernandinho stayed central to shield the three CB's. Both De Bruyne and Silva were often going into wide areas to support their wingbacks and create overloads on the wings. Trent was always up against both Mendy and De Bruyne which created a lot of problems for him. This of course is also down to a lack of support from our midfield in these areas, but they were also occupied by Aguero and Jesus taking in the pockets of space we left in midfield. Going to a 4-4-1 wouldn't have solved this problem, it would only have made it worse because the spaces would be even bigger in midfield.

      3. Trying to score a goal on a counter

      This I think would have been nearly impossible in a 4-4-1. Both fullbacks would be too deep to offer support, Salah I explained in point 1, no support from midfield without leaving it wide open, a lack of passing options for whoever was running up the pitch with the ball and Firmino lacks pace to do it on his own.



      This is how we set up at the start of the second half. This formation would allow us to control the spaces better and still try and play something similar to what we are used to playing. Klopp doesn't like his team in straight lines, which two banks of four usually is, he likes asymmetry in midfield.

      Same talking points:

      1. The Salah -> Chamberlain substitution

      Alex offers a lot more defensive stability than Salah, while still offering a lot of pace and the ability to carry the ball up the field.  With him we would have been able to keep the centre of the field closed and still force City to go into wide areas, which they were doing in the first half. He would also be able to carry the ball up the field from a more central position, offering him more passing options rather than Salah having to start from deep on the wing.

      2. City creating overloads in wide areas

      By going to three at the back, both our RCB and LCB would be able to get over to our fullbacks (wingbacks in this formation) quicker to offer support with the overloads, while also having both Wijnaldum and Alex in midfield being able to provide help on the wings. This last thing would be a lot more difficult for our midfielders in a midfield two.

      3. Trying to score a goal on a counter

      The starting position of our fullbacks is now higher. City were still pushing high up the pitch with both their wingbacks deep in our own half. We would be able to attack the same space in behind their wingbacks and create 1 vs 1 situations (which was the plan we started with). Both Moreno and Trent would be able to beat Danilo and Otamendi with their pace. Whenever we would get the ball, you could see either Moreno or Trent pushing high up the field immediately (We actually created a chance like that with Trent). With this formation, we also had Alex offering support from midfield, without leaving the midfield wide open and still keeping at least 5 players behind the ball (the 3 CB's and the 2 remaining CM's).

      Now all of this is of course 'in theory' as clearly the plan didn't work out and Klopp started changing it after we conceded the 3rd, which in my opinion is down to Can not being used to playing in the middle of the back three (he did play there as a LCB or RCB) and completely messing up his positioning so he couldn't intercept the ball.
      « Last Edit: Sep 12, 2017 11:47:39 pm by Danzel »
      HScRed1
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #728: Sep 13, 2017 04:14:39 pm
      I read a lot of posts by people wondering / questioning Klopp's substitutions at half time for our game at the Etihad. For me it did make sense to take of Salah and I'll try to give my point of view with regards to why Klopp took of Salah and why he changed our formation. This is all just my own thinking, it might be completely wrong. Feel free to disagree and add your own views and ideas.

      All I'm about to say really only applies from the start of the second half to the moment when we conceded the 3rd goal and he took off Firmino. Everything that happened after that, isn't really worth discussing. For me, that was the moment Klopp 'gave up', not during the break when we were down 2-0. This is about the idea behind the changes, not really about the execution.

      The main debate was why we didn't use two banks of four and try to sit deep rather than go to three at the back with wingbacks and still try to maintain a relatively 'high' line.



      I know it looks a little amateurish, but it's the best I can do and it helps visualize things.

      If you look at the players we had left on the pitch and the bench, we just weren't able to play two banks of four. For that to be effective, you need different players (Preferably two 6's and two quick wingers). The way we defend and set up, is to control space by pushing up high on the pitch and keeping the pitch as small as possible, control the passing lines and counterpress. To go from one extreme, front foot defending, to another, sitting deep in two banks of four, is a big difference that can't be adjusted in a break of 15 minutes. We train on fast transitions day in day out. From defence to attack and the other way around in a matter of seconds. We don't train on 'parking the bus'. Teams that specialize in this train on it every week, with eleven players and a completely different set of players. Even these teams tend to struggle with the two banks of four set up against City, certainly at the Etihad.

      There are three main talking points:

      1. The Salah -> Chamberlain substitution

      While Salah was indeed the one who offered the biggest threat on the pitch by trying to get him in 1 vs 1 situations with Otamendi, that threat would have easily been nullified had we reverted to a 4-4-1. Salah isn't good enough defensively to play this deep as a 'traditional' right winger and he would have been too close to City's wingbacks. He would have to start his runs from too deep and be up against it with very little support other than Firmino. We didn't have the runners in midfield to offer support without leaving the midfield wide open (Henderson or Can in this case).

      2. City creating overloads in wide areas

      This is actually what we struggled with the most. City vacated the centre of midfield. Only Fernandinho stayed central to shield the three CB's. Both De Bruyne and Silva were often going into wide areas to support their wingbacks and create overloads on the wings. Trent was always up against both Mendy and De Bruyne which created a lot of problems for him. This of course is also down to a lack of support from our midfield in these areas, but they were also occupied by Aguero and Jesus taking in the pockets of space we left in midfield. Going to a 4-4-1 wouldn't have solved this problem, it would only have made it worse because the spaces would be even bigger in midfield.

      3. Trying to score a goal on a counter

      This I think would have been nearly impossible in a 4-4-1. Both fullbacks would be too deep to offer support, Salah I explained in point 1, no support from midfield without leaving it wide open, a lack of passing options for whoever was running up the pitch with the ball and Firmino lacks pace to do it on his own.



      This is how we set up at the start of the second half. This formation would allow us to control the spaces better and still try and play something similar to what we are used to playing. Klopp doesn't like his team in straight lines, which two banks of four usually is, he likes asymmetry in midfield.

      Same talking points:

      1. The Salah -> Chamberlain substitution

      Alex offers a lot more defensive stability than Salah, while still offering a lot of pace and the ability to carry the ball up the field.  With him we would have been able to keep the centre of the field closed and still force City to go into wide areas, which they were doing in the first half. He would also be able to carry the ball up the field from a more central position, offering him more passing options rather than Salah having to start from deep on the wing.

      2. City creating overloads in wide areas

      By going to three at the back, both our RCB and LCB would be able to get over to our fullbacks (wingbacks in this formation) quicker to offer support with the overloads, while also having both Wijnaldum and Alex in midfield being able to provide help on the wings. This last thing would be a lot more difficult for our midfielders in a midfield two.

      3. Trying to score a goal on a counter

      The starting position of our fullbacks is now higher. City were still pushing high up the pitch with both their wingbacks deep in our own half. We would be able to attack the same space in behind their wingbacks and create 1 vs 1 situations (which was the plan we started with). Both Moreno and Trent would be able to beat Danilo and Otamendi with their pace. Whenever we would get the ball, you could see either Moreno or Trent pushing high up the field immediately (We actually created a chance like that with Trent). With this formation, we also had Alex offering support from midfield, without leaving the midfield wide open and still keeping at least 5 players behind the ball (the 3 CB's and the 2 remaining CM's).

      Now all of this is of course 'in theory' as clearly the plan didn't work out and Klopp started changing it after we conceded the 3rd, which in my opinion is down to Can not being used to playing in the middle of the back three (he did play there as a LCB or RCB) and completely messing up his positioning so he couldn't intercept the ball.

      Good post mate but what happens if we are down to 10 in a CL knock out against a quality team. Sometimes you need to defend deep and by saying we are not set up to play that way although true can be a real issue as on the weekend.

      Pretty sure J├╝rgen once said its easy to park the bus after playing against Maureen!

      Looking at J├╝rgen's body language after the second goal went in he knew against a quality team like City there was no way back and he started planning for the game tonight which I can understand.
      If we had managed to go in at just 1 down the tactics may have been different in the second half but its gone and done now and we will never know.
      Munch101
      • Forum Ronnie Moran
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #729: Sep 13, 2017 04:45:51 pm
      Good post mate but what happens if we are down to 10 in a CL knock out against a quality team. Sometimes you need to defend deep and by saying we are not set up to play that way although true can be a real issue as on the weekend.

      Pretty sure J├╝rgen once said its easy to park the bus after playing against Maureen!

      Looking at J├╝rgen's body language after the second goal went in he knew against a quality team like City there was no way back and he started planning for the game tonight which I can understand.
      If we had managed to go in at just 1 down the tactics may have been different in the second half but its gone and done now and we will never know.

      Hmmm not so sure I agree, I don't think Klopp ever knows when he is beat. I don't think he would ever look over a game ahead when 2 goals down at half time.

      Maybe you're right though
      Danzel
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #730: Sep 13, 2017 04:54:01 pm
      Good post mate but what happens if we are down to 10 in a CL knock out against a quality team. Sometimes you need to defend deep and by saying we are not set up to play that way although true can be a real issue as on the weekend.

      Pretty sure J├╝rgen once said its easy to park the bus after playing against Maureen!

      Looking at J├╝rgen's body language after the second goal went in he knew against a quality team like City there was no way back and he started planning for the game tonight which I can understand.
      If we had managed to go in at just 1 down the tactics may have been different in the second half but its gone and done now and we will never know.

      Oh you are right, I completely agree it can be an issue and that it is something that needs looking at. The post was mainly to look at why sitting deep wasn't (in my opinion) an option in this specific game with these specific circumstances. It's more a theory on the changes than anything else because as you say, we will never know.

      It's why I still think it was a mistake to let go of Lucas. While I of course do understand that he wanted to play more, someone like Lucas would make a massive difference in situations like that.

      I also think that if we get into a similar situation (depending on the score and wether we still need to score one / are ahead) in the future, Klopp would play 3 genuine CB's. Lovren wasn't fit and Gomez was / is probably going to start against Sevilla, so that wasn't an option.

      Lovren - Matip - Klavan
           Can - Henderson

      That to me looks a lot more solid already compared to what we saw on the weekend. Can was a very big problem for me in the middle of the 3 at the back. His positioning was way off, a complete lack of communication between him and Klavan / Matip. A real CB would organise that line better and I'm sure at least 2 goals (The Jesus header and the Jesus goal) would not have been scored. This is of course all talk after it happened and just something to talk / think about.

      I also suddenly remember the Chelsea - Burnley game at the start of the season. Cahill with the early red card and Chelsea concede 3 within 20 (?) minutes. I think we all agree that Chelsea is a solid team defensively, capable of parking the bus, yet they too conceded 3 against a team that isn't even in the same league as City. Of course they did end up scoring 2, but that's mainly due to Burnley deciding to sit back and not dominate the ball, allowing Chelsea to get forward. City were never going to allow us to do that, they wanted to humiliate us.
      Scottbot
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #731: Sep 24, 2017 07:15:37 am
      I know J├╝rgen is a strict 4-3-3 man but I just wonder if it might be worth changing things up given some of the defensive issues we have been having? It might be worth jumping on the back wagon and giving three at the back a little run out? Our defensive problems are well documented so a slightly different approach might be the way to go. Chelsea won the title playing 3-5-2 last season. I have never been the biggest fan of the formation but I can see some advantages.

      - It would enable Sturridge to play up front with Firmino
      - Alternatively you could give Mane a free role playing behind the number 9
      - There would be options for the Lung-back role, you could go with more defensively minded players (Moreno and TAA, loosely used term!) or use Mane, Ox and/or Salah.
      - Gomez would be comfortable in a right CB role in a three although I'm a little less sure about Lovren in the left-sided role because he is not particularly comfortable playing in space.
      - but overall it might enable us to be a little more compact and solid

      There are also times in games when I think we could switch to 4 across the middle, particularly later in games when we are defending a one goal lead, lesser teams get the ball wide and kill us with crosses and our narrow forwards do not do a great job in tracking or shutting down crosses.I'd like to see a proper 4-4-2 or 4-4-1-1 at times.
      trebor12
      • Forum Ian Callaghan
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #732: Sep 24, 2017 08:42:21 am
      I think, now that Man├ę ban is over, we could possibly see more of a 4 2 1 3 with Coutinho playing more as a No10. Klopp seems to like his 4 3 3 formation and least if Phil plays this role it will give us a bit more protection for our fragile defense with the 2 in midfield.
      billythered
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      • From Doubters to Believers
      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #733: Oct 14, 2017 06:45:26 am
      Most of us are obviously apprehensive about the match laters, understandable, to be without one of your most influential playmakers is a blow, however, its not the end of the world and its certainly not the end of the season,

      They'll be missing one of their main players too so neither side are 100%,

      Midfield is where we need to be on top of, their three , Matic, Mikyhiteran and Herrera, are probably better than Henderson, Can & Gini,
      But their not invincible they can be got at, especially Herrera, hes their weak link and it is he who i would target , I'd wind this f**ker up from the start, get in his face, even in the tunnel before KO, id be telling him he's a ugly kunt , yer ma's a whore , that sort of thing, anything to get him riled, he's a hothead and will react,
      Look, it's not nice and its not sportsmanship but FUCK EM , this is f***in war, we need any advantage we can get,

      Wind this kunt up and 9/10 he'll be first in the shower, before half time,

      They are obviously going to target our sh*te defence, who wouldn't?  So we need to really be on our game proper, I'd be inclined to play Can, Gini and the Ox rather than Hendo , Can & Gini,  again we need these three at their optimum,

      Its not ideal to change usual tact in a game like this but we have to do something to throw them off the scent , theyll expect us to have the usual suspects at the start and might even have targeted certain weaknesses outwith our defence,

      I'd go with this.....unlikely

                                 Mignolet
               Gomez  Matip  Lovren  Moreno
                                 Emre Can
                Wijnaldom           Chamberlain
                                Coutinho
                          Salah      Firmino

      Most probable we'll see this....

                                Mignolet
           Gomez  Matip   Lovren  Moreno
                               Henderson
                 Wijnaldom          Emre Can
                   Salah                   Coutinho   
                                Firmino

      Massive match this,  really cannot afford to lose,  win though and it could kick start our campaign proper......

      If there's ever a match for our players to stand up and be counted This is it...forget your monthly cheque, YOUR playing for that wee bird on your left tit, YOUR playing for those 53,000 fans all around the ground, get out there and prove you can compete with some of the best this league has to offer, but perhaps most if all, prove  to yourselves you can,

      Just f***in play well is all i ask , oh and .......F**kin Win !!


      YNWA


      HScRed1
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #734: Oct 25, 2017 01:44:04 pm
      Don't know why we have stopped pressing, extra CL games or a change of tactics?

      https://twitter.com/mc_of_a/status/923163207111462914
      FL Red
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #735: Oct 25, 2017 02:02:26 pm
      Don't know why we have stopped pressing, extra CL games or a change of tactics?

      https://twitter.com/mc_of_a/status/923163207111462914

      We miss Lallana. He harassed more than just about any of our other players (maybe bar Firmino on his best days).
      PurpleMonkey
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #736: Oct 25, 2017 02:30:37 pm
      We miss Lallana. He harassed more than just about any of our other players (maybe bar Firmino on his best days).

      I agree, and who presses just as well, if not better than Lallana and Firmino? I give you guys a clue, begins with H.
      FL Red
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #737: Oct 25, 2017 03:24:02 pm
      I agree, and who presses just as well, if not better than Lallana and Firmino? I give you guys a clue, begins with H.

      Halberto Moreno?
      HScRed1
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #738: Oct 25, 2017 03:48:12 pm

      Harry Wilson?
      Rockafella88
      • Forum Geoff Strong
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #739: Oct 26, 2017 12:11:47 am
      I believe Adam was the trigger player, where if he went than the team went. Firminho is the only one close to that and he has been poor at it this season.

      We have badly missed him this season.
      TheleftpegofRayKennedy
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #740: Oct 26, 2017 09:16:47 pm
      I believe Adam was the trigger player, where if he went than the team went. Firminho is the only one close to that and he has been poor at it this season.

      We have badly missed him this season.

      Odd that we don't seem to be playing Firmino in Adam's role as, I agree, he's similarly good at pressing.
      Scottbot
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #741: Nov 05, 2017 08:35:07 am
      I reckon that is the first time we've heard Klopp openly talk about playing in a different style i.e. Sitting deeper, playing on the counter, 4-4-2. It makes perfect sense given that our side is packed with pace and we've got defensive issues. More of the same please J├╝rgen. We've got the personnel to play a variety of different styles/tactics.
      HScRed1
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #742: Nov 05, 2017 10:03:55 am
      I reckon that is the first time we've heard Klopp openly talk about playing in a different style i.e. Sitting deeper, playing on the counter, 4-4-2. It makes perfect sense given that our side is packed with pace and we've got defensive issues. More of the same please J├╝rgen. We've got the personnel to play a variety of different styles/tactics.

      Agree especially when we are playing away there is a onus on the home team to at least play a bit of football. So no need to have both full backs pushed up high and like yesterday also have the 2 midfielders screening the back 4.

      Which brings me on to that 10 minutes of madness in the second half where we could have easily conceded a couple of goals. We were completely in control at that point and That should not be happening against teams like West Ham, similar things have happened during Klopps tenure.
      Highlighting the lack of a proper ball playing No 6 who can dictate the play.

      J├╝rgen has never mentioned upgrading this position so maybe we should just get used to similar situations in the future.

      Swab
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #743: Nov 05, 2017 01:41:25 pm
      I reckon that is the first time we've heard Klopp openly talk about playing in a different style i.e. Sitting deeper, playing on the counter, 4-4-2. It makes perfect sense given that our side is packed with pace and we've got defensive issues. More of the same please J├╝rgen. We've got the personnel to play a variety of different styles/tactics.

      He said the same after the Arsenal game I think.

      As far as I can tell, Klopp uses different formations and systems all the time, often changing mid game.

      He likes 433, but also uses 4231, 352, 451, 442, 4411, 343, with fluidity being the key, and the formation changing depending on whether we are attacking, or defending.
      To be honest, they are all variations on the same theme, more or less.
      Much more important is the transition, particularly from attack to defense, and it's in that area where we cause ourselves problems.
      PastorGeek
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #744: Nov 05, 2017 05:44:54 pm
      IMO we currently have the perfect squad for 4-4-2

      With the tricky players, pace, and width we have in our side it makes the most sense.

      This is how we lined up against west ham



      But if we were to pick our strongest 11 in a 4-4-2 for example, as you can see we have so much back up in all areas. We wont even Coutinho ;D, also both of our wingers could do a job up front.



      Many ppl think 4-4-2 is 'ourdated' but our current champions used it effectively to win the league. The other plus point is the same players we have in a 4-4-2 could easily switch back to a 4-2-3-1
      « Last Edit: Nov 05, 2017 08:16:01 pm by PastorGeek »
      Danzel
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #745: Nov 05, 2017 08:25:58 pm
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gDOygNWv50

      I remembered this video when I watched us counter-attack after that corner. Look at the way we set up in the video (Posted by BabuYagu on RAWK). This is from right after the corner was taken. We've got the 5 players defending the 6 yard box, 3 players blocking the runs and 2 players on the edge of the box ready for the counter-attack.



      Defended the corner well and the two quick lads finished the counter-attack. You can see the exact positioning of everyone there. Have we actually improved on defending corners? My memory is probably letting me down here, but I think we've only conceded the one from a corner this season at Watford after Wijnaldum missed the first post clearance? We seem to be struggling a bit more defending free kicks when there is space in behind us which Mignolet has to actually cover most of.

      I reckon that is the first time we've heard Klopp openly talk about playing in a different style i.e. Sitting deeper, playing on the counter, 4-4-2. It makes perfect sense given that our side is packed with pace and we've got defensive issues. More of the same please J├╝rgen. We've got the personnel to play a variety of different styles/tactics.

      It was a very interesting game from a tactical viewpoint. Or at least it was for us. Wasn't able to watch the game with the concentration I usually do, so I watched it again and saw some interesting things. Don't think I've ever seen us play with so much rotation going on with the front four and in midfield. We were constantly switching positions, changing our shape etc. Defensively we indeed looked like a 4-4-2:



      It was very clear how much we changed positions. Mane would often find himself in midfield (any of the positions), Firmino too.

      Our offensive formation was slighly different and we played with a square shape in the middle to get through West-Ham's lines:

      You can clearly see it here: the base in midfield with Can and Wijnaldum, two of the front four (any of them, they switched all the times) in front of them and the other two pushed a bit wider. Here it's Mane and Salah who have come inside from the wings, Alex and Firmino are the front two.



      A minute later, again, we're in possesion, square shape with the base in midfield, but on this occasion it's Mane and Alex who have come inside and Salah and Firmino are the front two.



      The four of them constantly changed positions, dropping into midfield, going wide, ... West-Ham couldn't live with their constant movement.

      Many ppl think 4-4-2 is 'ourdated' but our current champions used it effectively to win the league. The other plus point is the same players we have in a 4-4-2 could easily switch back to a 4-2-3-1

      We use this tactic against teams that sit deep and then it works, we did something similar against Huddersfield. I don't think we can play this sort of 4-4-2 against better teams, we'd get overrun in midfield, something we experienced for a small spell in the second half against the Hammers.



      sore monad
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #746: Nov 06, 2017 02:11:11 pm
      As somebody who's been banging on about us playing 4-4-2 for the last 2 years, I'm delighted to see us starting to play it, and it working very well on Saturday. I don't think it needs to be played every game - against the better teams an extra midfielder might be preferable ( although 4-4-2 is better on the counter-attack than 1 up front. But I don't think we will sit deep and counter from there much, it's not J├╝rgen's style, albeit we have the players to do it).

      I basically just think that the extra striker against weaker teams gives you more chance of scoring. Also means you can have a player coming back towards the ball and pulling defenders out of position, rather than having everybody running from midfield towards the defence.

      As Danzel says, there was a lot of rotation. It was actually 4-2-4 at times, and the front 4 all took turns at being strikers. Salah is the closest to a striker of the 4 of them in my opinion. Not cause he's the best finisher, but because he's the one with the knack of getting into the best positions. His movement off the ball is great, he reads the play really well.
      Robby The Z
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #747: Nov 06, 2017 05:04:26 pm
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gDOygNWv50

      I remembered this video when I watched us counter-attack after that corner. Look at the way we set up in the video (Posted by BabuYagu on RAWK). This is from right after the corner was taken. We've got the 5 players defending the 6 yard box, 3 players blocking the runs and 2 players on the edge of the box ready for the counter-attack.



      Defended the corner well and the two quick lads finished the counter-attack. You can see the exact positioning of everyone there. Have we actually improved on defending corners? My memory is probably letting me down here, but I think we've only conceded the one from a corner this season at Watford after Wijnaldum missed the first post clearance? We seem to be struggling a bit more defending free kicks when there is space in behind us which Mignolet has to actually cover most of.

      It was a very interesting game from a tactical viewpoint. Or at least it was for us. Wasn't able to watch the game with the concentration I usually do, so I watched it again and saw some interesting things. Don't think I've ever seen us play with so much rotation going on with the front four and in midfield. We were constantly switching positions, changing our shape etc. Defensively we indeed looked like a 4-4-2:



      It was very clear how much we changed positions. Mane would often find himself in midfield (any of the positions), Firmino too.

      Our offensive formation was slighly different and we played with a square shape in the middle to get through West-Ham's lines:

      You can clearly see it here: the base in midfield with Can and Wijnaldum, two of the front four (any of them, they switched all the times) in front of them and the other two pushed a bit wider. Here it's Mane and Salah who have come inside from the wings, Alex and Firmino are the front two.



      A minute later, again, we're in possesion, square shape with the base in midfield, but on this occasion it's Mane and Alex who have come inside and Salah and Firmino are the front two.



      The four of them constantly changed positions, dropping into midfield, going wide, ... West-Ham couldn't live with their constant movement.

      We use this tactic against teams that sit deep and then it works, we did something similar against Huddersfield. I don't think we can play this sort of 4-4-2 against better teams, we'd get overrun in midfield, something we experienced for a small spell in the second half against the Hammers.

      Going to watch again now. I thought it was a 4-2-3-1 but like you, I was rather distracted (taking care of my Mother while my Dad is in hospital - and believe me, Dad has the easy part of this  :'( ). So thanks for this post and I'm going to re-examine.
      Robby The Z
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #748: Nov 06, 2017 09:02:59 pm
      Enjoyed re-watching this more than I usually do as I didn't remember it as well as when I normally focus on a live match. No doubt the movement from the front four was impressive, especially (for me) that from Firmino. If I were to vote again I might select him, although Salah was impressive as well. Oxlaide-Chamberlain was alright but I thought he showed at times he is still getting up to speed with the system.

      As much as Gini and Emre playing their roles well, I thought the fullbacks being more reserved going forward was an important detail Saturday as well. Plus both Gomez and Moreno made a number of successful interventions. I have been wanting to see Robertson more and still would, but Alberto has improved so much on the defensive side.
      Breeding-Reds-In-The-434
      • Forum Emlyn Hughes
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      Re: Tactics geeks of the world unite...
      Reply #749: Nov 06, 2017 09:20:59 pm
      Enjoyed re-watching this more than I usually do as I didn't remember it as well as when I normally focus on a live match. No doubt the movement from the front four was impressive, especially (for me) that from Firmino. If I were to vote again I might select him, although Salah was impressive as well. Oxlaide-Chamberlain was alright but I thought he showed at times he is still getting up to speed with the system.

      As much as Gini and Emre playing their roles well, I thought the fullbacks being more reserved going forward was an important detail Saturday as well. Plus both Gomez and Moreno made a number of successful interventions. I have been wanting to see Robertson more and still would, but Alberto has improved so much on the defensive side.

      The pace of Ox could help us in the defensive category in that the pressure for Moreno to get forward isn't as vital. Ox's speed allows the full backs to stay back and defend more, something Klopp hasn't asked them to do this much of until now. Most of that has to be AOC's presence, right?

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