Monday, April 23, 2012

Soccernomics: Using the Size to Your Advantage

Just a quick coda to last Friday's post.  It amused me to see the Timbers come out in a formation completely designed to use the size of the field to their advantage - just like I described Stoke City doing - by staying compact and packing in the midfield.  The provided central defensive cover with Palmer playing just in front of the two halfbacks and they stayed compact by keeping the wide midfielders in closer.    It worked and it was a bit of brilliance by a coach who knew the team needed to win against a superior opponent.   Go Potters!  It was cynical, I suppose, but the team needed a win in the worst way.

The crowing about it in the O is odd, in my opinion, as the sum total of all of the offense the Timbers created was just about zero.  An incredibly lucky own goal may have been the only shot on Sporting's goal all game - certainly the only one that the keeper even had to wake for.  So, I do hope it does not become a trend because it was pretty dismal.  But you have got to do what you can with the tools you have and at the moment, the Timbers do not have many tools that possess the creative flair in the midfield or who can reliably provide service from the wings.

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