Opposition Scouting & Analysis
Analyzing Defensive Play
Now we have spent some time looking at the opposition’s attacking tendencies, it’s time to switch our focus to what they tend to do when they don’t have the ball. The first half of this module will focus on highlighting potential weaknesses in the opposition, before moving on to analyzing a team employing a high press strategy in defense.
George Galnovatch (University of Virginia), Mark Krikorian (Florida State), Oliver Gage & Wilmer Cabrera (Houston Dynamo) had the following to say about analyzing the opposition in defense:
Once you have viewed the video, please draw an illustration of this as similar to the diagrams we drew in Module 4 which we may want to include in a report.
Analyzing the opposition’s defensive style may not be limited to their perceived weaknesses. Many teams across the world including some in Major League Soccer, attempt to win the ball high up the field in dangerous areas by implementing a high press.
There’s was arguably no better team at implementing this throughout the 2016 & 2017 seasons than the New York Red Bulls.
We are going to use this defensive system employed by the Red Bulls as an example of a technique you may want to consider when building an opposition report – making suggestions.
When we discussed this topic with coaches who receive and use reports, and with analysts and scouts who write them, there was a common theme. Almost everybody who contributed to this course valued their working relationship between the staff. When writing your report, making suggestions can be a productive exercise, especially if you have examples of tactics which were successfully used by other teams against an upcoming opponent.
Remember, there is a big difference for a head coach between hearing “you should do this” and “other opponents seemed to have a lot of success in doing this”. If you are going to make suggestions, make sure you are on the same page as the coach reading the report!
Take a look at the two videos of the New York Red Bulls we have provided below. In the first video, we have found multiple occasions on which the Red Bulls successfully pressed their opponents and won the ball back by forcing a throw, or a turnover in the run of play. The second video on the right, shows how teams used this to their advantage and managed to ‘break the press’ by exploiting open areas of the field voided by the Red Bulls commitment to pressing the ball.
Please add one description to to the comments section below, including what you might suggest a coach does to exploit this weakness.
Once this is complete, please move on to Module 7.
If you enjoyed this Module and want to know more about CoachTech’s courses, you can read a full description, along with some sample video content here: CoachTech Courses
If you’ve seen enough and want to purchase this course, please use the button below!