Mattéo Guendouzi is an industrious midfield technician and Alex Iwobi sometimes receives unjust criticism

Arsenal lost to Manchester City for the second time this season, losing 3-1 with Unai Emery’s game plan unable to restrict the plan of opposing coach Pep Guardiola. City’s system was very adventurous and one of the evident aims was to control the midfield areas. City set-up with a 3-2-4-1 when in possession, whilst Fernandinho dropped into defence to make a 4-3-3 when defending against the ball.

Arsenal on the other hand started the match with a 4-4-2 shape, with Sead Kolasinac in a more advanced role than usual, taking up very high positions on the left-wing. Alex Iwobi played on the right-side of midfield for a change and this ended up not being the best of decisions. The right-side of Arsenal’s defence was pinned back by City as most of the home sides attacks were built-up on the left-side of the pitch. Because of City’s intent to attack on that side of the flank, I was surprised that Leroy Sane did not start the match, but two of the ways in which the winger has proved excellent were achieved without his influence; many runs on the left-side were made against Arsenal’s winger and full-back, and cut-backs/crosses were played and twice resulted in the type of finishes that City are regularly good at.

In relation to this, I recommend reading Michael Cox’s piece for ESPN on the types of goals Manchester City score. 

Irrespective of the final score, however, Mattéo Guendouzi once again put in an excellent performance alongside Lucas Torriera in what was, however, an obviously outnumbered and tactically deficient (in the context of the aforementioned match) double pivot. Guendouzi once again showed the ability to carry the ball forward and generally retain possession well, in this case particular impressive considering City’s overload in midfield. Guendouzi was also impressive in spreading the ball to either Iwobi or Kolasinac on the flanks.

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How can football be drawn to politics, society and business?

I was reading Melvyn Bragg’s 12 Books That Changed The World, which breaks down how 12 separate texts of different times, background and purpose had a great impact not only on its field or topic, but on how the world functions. One of the 12 texts analysed by Bragg, The Rules of Association Football, is argued by Bragg that as a result of enabling a sport to be played and for it to be accessible to such a wide range of people, the sport itself has had a major impact on the way in which people live their lives and how the world subsequently works.

The Rules of Association Football was first published in 1863, and displayed what were the original set of rules for the game that many have come to know and love. Each of the thirteen rules included have been developed to suit necessary changes to the game as time has passed, with two examples being the addition of the goalkeeper position in 1871, and the first step to removing back-passes being caught by goalkeepers in 1992, which revolutionised the game and how it is played more than anything else. But such rules have not only had an effect on football, but have also enabled football to have an ever-growing impact on the world. The impact football has had and the subsequent connections that can be made, can be broken down into three segments; politics, the conscience of society and business.

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Are Chelsea at a standstill with idealism? Not yet, surely?

Chelsea enjoyed a very good start to the season, having went unbeaten in their first twelve league games, with Maurizio Sarri getting the players on board with his tactics and philosophy, previously seen at Napoli in Serie A, which contrasts from predecessor Antonio Conte’s approach massively.

But, things have since not been fun sailing, losing four of the eleven games that have followed, and tactical issues, some of which even predicted before the season began have become apparent.

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Arsenal tactical pros and cons under Unai Emery

As expected prior to the beginning of the 2018-19 campaign, the Premier League has boasted some interesting tactical trends, with teams notably characterised and having their form determined by some of the evident tactical aspects. And with the first-half of the season at its closing time, I decided to summarise the pros and cons of Arsenal after having previously offered my opinions after the first two games, and to conclude on what could and needs to be seen in 2019.

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Newcastle United 1-2 Wolves: Both sides create chances but Newcastle’s defensive positioning costly

Both Newcastle United and Wolves came into this game on the back of good results, defeating West Ham United 0-3 and drawing with Everton 1-1 and defeating previously undefeated (under Maurizio Sarri) Chelsea 2-1 respectively.

Newcastle United set-up with an expected back three system with DeAndre Yedlin and Matt Ritchie as full/wing-backs, but the roles and positioning of Ayoze Perez and Christian Atsu tended to determine whether the Magpies were playing a 5-4-1 or a 5-3-2.

Wolves also played with an expected three centre-backs, opting with their usual 3-4-3 formation. This match oversaw the return of midfielder Ruben Neves to the starting XI after missing the previous match against Chelsea, and what also made things interesting was the use of right-winger Adama Traore as a ‘false 9’.

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Tactical Analysis: Valencia 3-1 Young Boys


Weekday four of the Champions League saw the return match between Valencia and Young Boys. In the previous match, both teams got a point in Switzerland. Today though was significant for both especially for Valencia who needed to win to stand any chance of being able to go through to the next round. A win here for them would set them up nicely for their next two big fixtures away from home against Juventus and finally at home against Manchester United. But before they could even think of the other fixtures, they first had to face a tricky opponent in Young Boys.

Starting formations.

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What Everton have to offer in attack

Everton face a very tough fixture next with an away game against an undefeated Chelsea. So, the question is, what can we expect from Everton? This analysis will give an outline of Everton’s offensive organisation against Brighton in their 3-1 win at home last week (3/11/18).

Everton were at home to a tough opponent in Brighton who had a great October. They managed three wins out of three, including a win versus a good Wolves side. So for Everton, this was expected to be a challenge.

Starting line-up:

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