March 25, 2010

Analysis of the goal conceded against Fulham

Firstly, you can now follow me on Twitter: @WindyCOYS.

Secondly, I’ve had a number of comments recently criticising me for always focusing on the negatives. In order to disprove this (I am generally very positive, honest!), I will endeavour to analyse some goals scored in the future, but for now (time is limited), here is my take on the goal conceded against Fulham.

Zamora’s goal.

Damien Duff carries the ball forward having received it from Etuhu. I have made no attempt to cover up the fact that I don’t think Modric works in the middle of midfield in a 4-4-2, and this sort of explains why. Palacios is a destroyer, very much defensive-minded, but he doesn’t hold. Therefore, when Modric is caught upfield (as he is here), Palacios needs to have held position. He hasn’t, and therefore Duff has a totally free run at our defence. This wasn’t the first or last time in the first half that it happened.

Due to our midfield players having gone walkabout, Bassong has to come out to close Duff. By the time Palacios has got close to Duff, Zamora is alive and ready to make his move. Note at this point that AssouEkotto has his eyes firmly on the ball. Many full-backs in this position would have an arm on the attacking player to feel where they are.

I overuse the phrase “ball-watching” on this blog. But then our defenders overuse the act! Lovely little ball from Duff, but the way AssouEkotto has just switched off and let Zamora run off him rather sums up the 45 minutes that he had last night. The follow two shots illustrate better how Zamora gives AssouEkotto the slip.

Now you see him.

Now you don’t.

Zamora is on the crest of a wave, and has the confidence to take it early and first time – it’s a cracking finish, and Gomes has absolutely no chance.

But what a comeback, eh? Most unlike Redknapp to make changes so early, but it worked a treat. Huddlestone for AssouEkotto was a no-brainer; Benoit was having a shocker, and Modric is shackled by the defensive duties (which he’s not that good at by the way) in the centre. Bentley for Kranjcar was a stroke of genius, and Bents was inspirational in the second half.

Wembley awaits!

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  • paulhasissues says:

    nice windy nice, althought in Modders defence, he had burst on a fine run in to fullham’s box and was caught by the speed of the break.

  • Anonymous says:

    modric’s workrate ecspecially in the first half was a disgrace. He spent all his time strutting about and not tracking back leaving wilson to cover the whole centre of the pitch.

  • Kees says:

    Good work Windy, although I think you are too lenient on Modric, when Etuhu has the ball, Modric is too far forward trying to mark someone else, meaning Duff could get in behind him in the gap.

    I agree BAE could have done better, but overall it was a good run and finish by Fulham.

  • Anonymous says:

    not much analysis needed for me, any decent left back who is worth anything wud not have let player inside him to get shot off, positioning all wrong and so lazy …ekotto massive weak link and one very average player imo. cud say something more but i wont!

  • Anonymous says:

    Top stuff Windy

    Modric is best at LM
    Bale is best at LB
    Hudd is a good CM

    No brainer

    Ron

  • Anonymous says:

    You’re absolutely right, specially when you mention that BAE would have an arm on the attacking player to feel where he was. Intelligence and winner’s mentality (that means you don’t want to loose by no means and therefore you do absolutely your best, as a defender, not to allow your opponent to score) are two of the most important human qualities and this applies also to players. I was really furious at BAE and I was living in agony that he’ll make a stupid fatal mistake already from the first minutes. For me it was obvious that for one more time his actions were beyond any logical control. I think that if we want to move to a higher level of play and start seriously challenging titles and trophies we should get rid from players like BAE and Corluca (beside other shortcomings, he has an average 20% (1 in 5) of accuracy in passing the ball) or keep them only as substitutes.

  • Anonymous says:

    If Dawson does not play both Fulham players onside, it’s a whole different thing though isn’t it. Not blaming Dawson, but really every player has something they should be doing. Bassong and BAE stayed where they were, Dawson kept tracking back which kept everyone onside and left two options open to Duff. If Dawson had not bit on the runs, both players would have been in an offside position and the back pressure from ilson would have taken care of Duff. Another way of seeing it, I suppose. Peterballb

  • Ledleydaking says:

    good analysis, but we all know our squad is a bit thin on the ground and we need to ride our next 2 games until we have more troops. So, yes… Modric is not a central 2 in midfield and this exposed us and we conceeded an average goal.

    Maybe you should analyse the 23 passing move for our 3rd goal…. sheer genius

  • T says:

    Yes, our squad is thin on the ground and Modric not a central midfielder, in a 4-4-2. Harry showed he knew this by putting him LM at HT. True about the off-side too. I would have prefered it if you focused on the 23-move 3rd goal. Look who wins the ball at the start playing CM and who finishes it at the end. Class player… clever, clever buy Harry! T

  • Windy says:

    T – totally agree, my MOTM yesterday, and I think he should start in CM on Saturday.

  • Anonymous says:

    Disagree about Dawson playing people onside. I think when an opposing player is driving through midfield like that with time to pick his pass trying to play for offside is not a good option. A well timed run/pass kills you.

    I think Dawson was doing the correct thing and dropping to cover the ball in behind the defence which was the biggest risk. BAE should have been doing the same. So I disagree about having a hand on Zamora, I think he should’ve been staying a couple of yards deeper than Zamora so he could see both the ball and his man and so he’d have a headstart in the race to the through ball.

    Yes that means a ball to Zamora’s feet then becomes an option, but it’s a better option for us than the ball behind as BAE would be between Zamora and the goal and BAE’s quick enough that he wouldn’t have had to be so deep that he couldn’t close Zamora down as the ball was travelling to him.

    Totally BAE’s fault. Poor defending.

  • JimmyG2 says:

    In Ekotto’s defence I will say that he usually makes himself available for the ball out from Gomes.
    The first three or four times that Gomes had the ball he fed Ekotto who for some reason turned and played it back across the back four instead of playing it down the line or inside to Modric.
    After that Gomes started kicking it long towards Crouch.
    I think that Bale is better operating from full back in any case.

  • DubaiYid says:

    Love Daws to bits but he tried the Hoddle-esque hollywood ball too many times, it has worked many times this season out to Bale but it’d already been cut out twice or three times. He tried it that extra time, was cut out and they scored from it. Modders the intelligent player he is, had read that pass and was up with Bale to join in the attack, however it was cut out leaving Modders out of position, Bale out of position and 3 on 2 for Palacios and BAE.

  • Lovely stuff Windy!

    I was gutted when Zamora scored, but I always knew we would come back to score one… not predicting 3 however! Pleasant surprise. A resilient Tottenham is a delicious prospect.

    COYS!

  • Anonymous says:

    somehow BAE seems to need some sorting out, and I hope he stays positive because he’s a much improved player now. but yes, we could have done better in central midfield, the way fulham had a firmer grip in the last 20 minutes is also worth looking at – we shouldn’t have allowed them so much time on the ball.

  • Anonymous says:

    Dawson overdoes the long ball in the first quarter of most matches.
    The signs were there several times, before Fulham’s goal. Palacios repeatedly had two Fulham midfielders running rowards him and Modric nowhere near, each time. Couldn’t understand why Modric couldn’t see the danger he was allowing.

  • Anonymous says:

    Great review, although I can also agree with other monday-morning quaterbacks, too, cause it’s true that there is more than one valid scenario to be imagined from the same situation. Kudos to all 🙂 John

  • Anonymous says:

    Dawson got it wrong but only a little bit. He made the split second judgement as to where the ball was going to go and believed he could get there – the finish was sharp.

  • Sam-I-am says:

    Thanks, Windy. Always enjoy reading your analysis.

    A number of mistakes/wrong decisions conspire for this particular one: BAE ball watching, Dawson not holding the line, Modric not tracking back. I believe it is the unfortunate combination rather than any particular one (any of BAE, Dawson, Modric could have prevented this one). That said, one thing that I noticed is the amount of space that tends to open up between our back line and midfield. I think Dawson and Bassong are sometimes lazy/slow to push out and position themselves further up the field while keeping a watchful eye on the oppositions forwards. A question of defending from the front?

  • Anonymous says:

    Agree with those who say the signs were there early. I expected Fulham’s goal and when it came I started composing my congratulations to them. They’re a decent side. But everything changed in the second half.

  • Anonymous says:

    Have we re-signed Bent?

  • Vaclav says:

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    support@soccer24.com.

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