Thursday, 14 June 2012

Group B: Germany v Netherlands Post Match Analysis

Gomez 24,38                                      Van Persie 73

Germany start in their 4-2-3-1 shape, starting 11:
GK: Neuer, LB: Lahm,  CB: Babstuber,  CB: Hummels, RB: Boateng  CM: Khedira  CM: Schweinsteiger, LW: Podolski, CW: Ozil,  RW: Muller, ST: Gomez.
SUBS USED: Gomez/Klose,72 Ozil /Kroos, 81 Muller /Bender 92

Netherlands start off in their 4-2-3-1 shape, starting 11:
GK: Steklenburg, LB: Willems, CB: Heitinga, CB: Mathijsen, RB: Van der Wiel,  DCM: Van Bommel, DCM: de Jong, LW: Afellay, AM: Sneijder,  RW: Robben, ST: Van Persie.
SUBS USED: Hunterlaar/ Afellay, 46 Van Bommel /Van der Vaart, 46 Robben/Kuyt, 83

A Little look:
These two rivals, like most, are more alike on the field then they would let you believe tactically; they set up the same in a 4-2-3-1 shape and both keep the ball well. Lahm is up against his club mate Robben, and this will be a key battle along with the deep middle two of Germany and Holland and both number "10" roles.

This was a great game to watch even though both teams only had approximately ten shots each. They were both set up in a 4-2-3-1 shape although the application was different. The first point we will make was how
the two teams worked off the ball. Germany were fantastic without the ball, closing down and applying pressure when Holland advanced. They let Holland have the ball up until the last five yards of the Dutch half and  the front players would press the ball and the spare man. Gomez  did it in very small bunches. Schweinsteiger and Khedira worked the double pivot really well, the latter being the man who mostly pushed higher. The pair handled Sneijder and his great movement well today passing him frequently from player to player on their right side. Poldolski was excellent off the ball, staying wide to keep an eye on Robben along with Lahm, who because of this, did not venture forward very often in the game. Hummels did not start well but eventually grew into the game. He kept the ball moving and was strong with his decision-making.The passes that cut Germany up in the first ten minutes  faded out as the Germans settled well.,Boateng didn't really get forward at all, as he also was aware of the danger coming from his side of the pitch, this being where Sneijder operated. Muller was also very good at dealing with the danger down his side. Holland were just not in the game defensively, with the attacking four not so great at closing down although it's fair to say that this is not in their nature. They left too big of a gap between them and the two deep mid-fielders. There was simply too much room for the German players to work the ball. Williams had a terrible game, he never seemed sure if he should stick or twist and was given the run around. The rest of the back line performed okay but were by no means great. de Jong stayed deep while Van Bommel found it hard to be the box-to-box midfielder they needed. He dwelt on the ball a few times and was neither the creative player they needed up top nor the defender they needed in their own half.

In the middle:
Both teams played well over 400 passes today. Holland's passes were at a distance their opponents could handle, mainly around the half way line as the Germans pressed well. They tried to probe and were a lot faster in their play than in the first game although with the Germans all doing their job they found it hard to find space when they pushed on, leading them to rush the ball into the box from deep sometimes, which just doesn't suit them. Sneijder was excellent again with his movement and played the most passes in the attacking third, some of which were sublime, but he just didn't have the support. There were times when the Dutch would hit on the break but every time this happened they were outnumbered and the ball just came back as the Germans moved as one unit. Schweinsteiger enjoyed the room he was allowed, adding two assists to his all-round display today.

Wing play:
Robben's press was enough to keep Lahm and Poldoski from attacking, which is saying something; the pair were disciplined and stopped him from having any real impact so he kept swapping flanks but just ran into the same problem on the other side. Muller stretched the play in the final third being a good out ball. He also made runs inside taking defenders with him and this is how the first goal came about.  Muller cut inside and played the ball to Schweinsteiger who was in space just off the play, as he was all game. Muller didn't stop his run there, and drove into the box whilst  Schweinsteiger looked up then stroked the ball to Gomez, who excellently turned with it in one fluid movement and calmly opened his body up, faked far side and tucked it in the near post. Affery will want to forget today quickly and it should be easy as he only played one half along with Van Bommel, which tells it's own story.

Up Top:
Van Persie had another bad day aside from his goal that was well taken, although Hummels will be disappointed that he let him go so easily.When he did get in behind a few times he made the same mistake as in the last game, not connecting with the ball as we know he can. Gomez barely touched the ball but that's not his game: with all the great movement of the players around him the team knows that at all times they have a man in the box who is ready to pounce. His second goal was built up like the first; after the long ball, Muller got the better of Williams again and Gomez read the knock on, played it out to Ozil (who was always drifting to the wings and had another good game finding space and his team mates with neat passing). He played the ball inside to Gomez whilst Muller ran inside to take the defender and with the extra room that Gomez found, he showed his great finishing ability and knocked the ball across goal into the side netting. 

Full Time: 
Another string to the many that Germany have on their bow. In the first game they dealt with a compacted Portugal side who pushed them to the wings and they didn't mind crossing the ball. The presence of Gomez inside the box helped with this. In this game they closed down well after drawing Holland onto them. They dealt with the Dutch knocking the ball around. The Germans controlled the game and sped things up when needed. If there are no shenanigans in the last games then Germany should progress to the next stage. The Dutch made changes at half time that just that didn't work; the inclusion of Van der Vaart gave Germany the middle of the park and the 4-2-4 style still didn't give them many options. They have made it very tough for themselves, even if they do their job they will have to pray that they can get a big result, and could well be cheering the Germans on to beat the Danes, although that would be hard for them. It was called the group of death, and if this is what death is like then can I meet my maker, as he will surely be a football fan.

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