The Roar
The Roar

Nick Gerver

Roar Pro

Joined March 2020

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Detailed tactical analysis of A-League football/soccer matches, looking at formations, gameplans, strategies, movements, and everything else tactics. Comments/feedback? Contact me on twitter @ALeague_Apart, or visit me at www.aleagueapart.com

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I think he struggled with having to do everything himself at Victory.
City’s system creates high volumes of chances from the midfield/wings, so if he can fit in, he’ll have plenty of chances to be ‘on’.

Why Andrew Nabbout to Melbourne City makes sense

So true! He’ll miraculously dribble through 3 or 4 defenders only to blast it over the bar.

He’s an easy player for everyone to hate, balanced by a fair bit of talent. Overall a good player for the health of the league!

Why Andrew Nabbout to Melbourne City makes sense

I’m hopeful that we’ll see them link up like Barbarouses and Le Fondre have for Sydney. Those two have a great understanding and are always creating chances for each other.

Why Andrew Nabbout to Melbourne City makes sense

Based on the way he’s played recently, he likes to be the one ‘doing’ things – taking the ball and dribbling it, shooting from distance and trying to work his way through the entire team on his own. It might be that at Victory he didn’t really have anyone who would complement his play very well (aside from Rojas when he joined), but I think he’ll have to learn to share a bit more with Maclaren.

That being said, if they do play him on the right in the same role as Wales, he will get plenty of chances to be the one finishing moves off

Why Andrew Nabbout to Melbourne City makes sense

Absolutely. Even though their form had faltered, their style of play seems perfect for tournament football – keep it tight and attack precisely.

They need someone who can finish chances well when they pop up, but I haven’t seen anyone in the team who is able to do that with regularity currently.

Do they also feel like they need to fill the Brandon O’Neill role or is Retre/Brattan the solution for next season?

A-League grand final analysis: Sydney FC 1, Melbourne City 0

I suppose what I meant with that is they didn’t really have someone who would step on the ball and dictate play and look for through balls from the centre, with Berenguer and Luna drifting wide.

A good example is Wales – I think he would have an incredible impact if they could build up on the left, and then work the ball in a way that would allow Wales to drive at King (and at goal) 1v1 in more central areas.

I liked Metcalfe in extra time who would look to receive centrally and turn and also when Brillante came forward more.

A-League grand final analysis: Sydney FC 1, Melbourne City 0

It was a good move based on how the game had progressed. Caceres was tidy on the ball and got into good spaces, and crucially, good at retaining possession and working in defence.

The situation called for a bit more directness, which Baumjohann is best at, dribbling forward or looking for progressive or penetrating passes.

A-League grand final analysis: Sydney FC 1, Melbourne City 0

To be honest even in the last game it was really tight, requiring two uncharacteristic defensive errors for City to score.

Should be a good contest. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 1-1 or something that leads us into extra time.

Grand final preview: Sydney FC vs Melbourne City

I do think Sydney will win. Unless Perth has another set of surprises up their sleeves, their game should be similar to this one. Sydney are able to be more direct with their attack and I think they are stronger through central areas and have better finishing than Wellington.

I’m not sure how well Perth can chase a game, and having played over the weekend they may struggle to match Sydney over 90 minutes. To your point on the 1%, they may have used it all on Saturday!

Tony Popovic gets Perth's tactics right against Wellington

Don’t tempt me…I wonder how difficult it would be to properly replicate a team’s playing style in FM…

Perth Glory finals preview: A new Diego Castro-less formation for Tony Popovic

That’s harsh – he leads the league in clean sheets this season (8).

I’m guessing your opinion might be a bit influenced by the 5-3 against Adelaide, where he did make a mistake from a corner, but also saved a penalty. The other goals weren’t particularly easy to stop as a keeper.

Perth Glory finals preview: A new Diego Castro-less formation for Tony Popovic

Thanks!

100% agree with you. He seems to be the one of the few players who will…just run through a team and make penetrative runs from deep. The only other player who really does this is Ninkovic, who has been much more of a focal point now. Players like Barbarouses and Buhagiar focus more on stretching the play by running off the shoulder of the last defender. And then Baumjohann, who much prefers to receive the ball into feet and carry. A few times in the past few games you watch Baumjohann and see how ambitious he wants to be passing to the right back, who is not on the same wavelength as Grant would be.

Tactical analysis: Melbourne City 2, Sydney FC 0

Definitely, the City press was really strong and disrupted SFC pretty hard. I think the Wales option made them a bit reserved with pressing – if they press hard, space is left in behind for direct balls into Wales, and I think they haven’t worked on a very organised press too much this season, focusing more on standing off and positioning.

City looks good for the upcoming games!

Tactical analysis: Melbourne City 2, Sydney FC 0

I hope they’ve got a bit of this data on hand too! If not, they know where to find me 😁

Melbourne City versus Sydney FC preview: Data analysis

Haha that’s true! It definitely feels a bit unfair that you guys will be playing Sydney who have had two competitive games to really get into the swing of things.

I guess now you know what to expect from Sydney though!

Melbourne City versus Sydney FC preview: Data analysis

Yeah, he looked a bit off the pace that game. Caught offside a few times and didn’t provide too much running

Tactical analysis: Melbourne Victory 1, Western United 2

I think he’s A-League standard, just not ‘build a team around’ standard. In his current role, it feels like he has the responsibility to do everything – linking play, coming deep to get the ball and also finish at the end – which makes him look a bit desperate with his play. It does seem that selfishness is part of his game, which isn’t a problem if he plays mainly in the penalty area, but when he takes the ball out wide and dribbles in to shoot from outside the box, it is quite wasteful for the team.

Tactical analysis: Melbourne Victory 1, Western United 2

Agree with that 100%. I think it’s a bit unfortunate that Jakob Poulsen wasn’t the player they thought he might be, as in theory he was the deep lying playmaker which I think would have really worked out for them, especially in this kind of game. From their brief stints over the past 2 games, it looks like Lesiotis and Kirdar are solid options, while Barnett has also shown his potential.

I like Rojas, but he needs someone to create space in front for him. In theory his partnership with Toivonen was perfect – Ola would drop deep, with Rojas making the opposite run, but it looks like that didn’t work out either as defences figured out that they didn’t need to follow Toivonen as he dropped. Is Nabbout the long term striking option?

Kamsoba also doesn’t seem to be developing much and Kruse is a huge injury liability. With Donachie going to the Jets and potentially requiring a new first choice goalkeeper, Victory have a HUGE rebuild on the cards.

Tactical analysis: Melbourne Victory 1, Western United 2

Haha I wrote this one just for you! 😛

It’s difficult to get a side defending confidently, especially when they’re shipping goals. I’m sure Stajic is spending ages on the training ground trying to train the structures and decision making. It’ll be good to see performances next year if he’s able to get a few signings in

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

Their first half play was fairly unimaginative. Once they’d won the ball back, the front four would sprint forward to receive a ball in behind, but no one was there to link the play in midfield. It definitely didn’t help that they hardly had any possession in the first half to really judge their play.

Nisbet helped by being able to dribble through the press to bring the ball up into midfield, while Tommy Oar’s more central position meant that they had someone to link play.

I still find it a bit odd that Stajic has his team playing out from the back, but often leaves the attacking midfield area vacant, which often results in the Mariners having to play long balls forward anyway.

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

The first half was a bit unimaginative – whenever they won the ball everyone would sprint forward to try to receive a long ball in behind, which made it difficult to bring the ball forward as no one could link the defence/defensive midfield to attack. They also didn’t really have much possession anyway, so it was difficult to really draw much from their play.

Nisbet helped a lot as he was able to continually dribble through the press to get the ball in midfield while Tommy Oar played more centrally. The two players helped to link the play a lot better.

I still find it very odd that while Stajic likes to build from the back, the attacking midfield area is often empty in the centre. So they’ll play out simple from the back, but then resort to playing long balls into the flanks or into the striker.

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

I like the comment about “not talking about anything the viewer cannot see on his tv”. One thing I’d add onto that is they should provide us with insight as to what’s happening at the ground. For example, a player who’s limping off camera, a coach who’s deep in disagreement with the ref, or a few words exchanged after a tough challenge. These provide us with a bit more context of what’s happening in the game.

“Commentators need to realise we watch the game for the game. They are not the reason we turn on our sets.” – well said!

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

They should really give the option to mute the commentators and the artificial crowd noise – I love being able to hear the players and coaches communicate with each other!

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

I think Ziggy is good when he doesn’t have to think about what to do and can just get stuck in, so he shone on Friday when he was faced with desperate defensive situations.

From watching some of the games before the break, it seems that the defence is a bit hesitant and don’t know when they should engage our step back. I think they are missing a leader at the ball who can read the game well and direct the defence. Kim did that a little bit from midfield before he left.

Commentary in the A-League: A look at Central Coast Mariners vs Newcastle Jets

Definitely, was good to see him get on the pitch! I feel like he’ll fit in well – he takes up good positions in support of the team, always ready to receive the ball and is happy to sit deeper to cover the wingbacks bombing forward, as well as O’Shea who ventures further forward.

Brisbane Roar 0, Adelaide United 1: Tactical analysis