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Zonal Marking - Tue Jul 5 10:18 AM
A completely one-sided game in Paris, as France progressed to the semi-final with ease. Didier Deschamps had two players suspended. Adil Rami was replaced by left-footed Samuel Umtiti, who was making his international debut, which meant Laurent Koscielny moved to the right of the centre-back duo....
Zonal Marking - Mon Jul 4 10:56 AM
Wales went behind – but nevertheless produced a brilliant all-round team display to eliminate Belgium. Chris Coleman made one change to his side, reintroducing Hal Robson-Kanu, who was deemed more likely to stretch the Belgian defence than Sam Vokes, a more traditional centre-forward. In a game w...
Zonal Marking - Wed Dec 23 3:48 PM
Goals from Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud won the game, and Arsenal move four points clear of Manchester City. Arsene Wenger named an unchanged side, the XI he’s depended upon in recent weeks because of injury problems. Alexis Sanchez wasn’t fit enough to make the squad. Manuel Pellegrini welcom...
Zonal Marking - Mon Jan 19 2:47 PM
Arsenal produced a tactically mature performance, largely nullifying Manchester City’s attacking threats. Manuel Pellegrini welcomed back Sergio Aguero, who played as the lone striker with David Silva just behind, and captain Vincent Kompany. Samir Nasri was out, while Yaya Toure is at the Africa...
Zonal Marking - Mon Apr 7 11:37 AM
Everton outfoxed Arsenal with a surprise strategy and some clever movement. Roberto Martinez wasn’t able to welcome back Phil Jagielka, but John Stones has been excellent as his replacement. Ross Barkley was left out, with Leon Osman favoured – but Osman barely lasted ten minutes before getting i...
Zonal Marking - Tue Apr 1 4:00 PM
Arsenal and Manchester City played out an enjoyable 1-1 draw. Arsene Wenger was still without Laurent Koscielny and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had a knock, so Thomas Vermaelen continued at the back and Lukas Podolski returned to the side. Manuel Pellegrini’s Manchester City side were unchanged from...
Zonal Marking - Tue Mar 25 1:29 PM
Jose Mourinho recorded his biggest league victory as Chelsea manager with a crushing win over Arsenal. Mourinho continued with Samuel Eto’o upfront rather than Fernando Torres – Eto’o only lasted 10 minutes, but scored the opener. In midfield, Mourinho was without Ramires and Willian, both suspen...
Zonal Marking - Mon Mar 17 10:39 AM
Arsenal went ahead within two minutes, then sat uncharacteristically deep for the remainder of the game. Tim Sherwood made four changes from the side that lost to Benfica, with Nacer Chadli in the number ten role and Nabil Bentaleb returning to the side. Arsene Wenger named his expecting starting...
Zonal Marking - Thu Feb 20 12:11 PM
Arsenal started excellently but Bayern increasingly demonstrated their superiority. Arsene Wenger made the surprise decision to continue with Yaya Sanogo upfront – the Frenchman had only made his full debut in the weekend win over Liverpool. Pep Guardiola also named a surprise XI, with Javi Marti...
Zonal Marking - Tue Feb 18 12:31 PM
Arsenal narrowly won an extremely open cup tie. Arsene Wenger rested various players ahead of the meeting with Bayern on Wednesday. The most interesting inclusion was striker Yaya Sanogo, making his first start. Brendan Rodgers brought back Daniel Agger in place of Kolo Toure, selected Joe Allen...
Zonal Marking - Mon Feb 10 11:56 PM
Liverpool produced the best spell of football the Premier League has seen this season, and recorded a crushing victory over the (former) league leaders. Brendan Rodgers named an unchanged side, despite the option of fit-again Joe Allen. He’s still without four key defenders. Arsene Wenger brought...
Zonal Marking - Mon Dec 9 1:12 PM
Arsenal extended their lead at the top, while Everton extended the Premier League’s longest unbeaten run. Arsene Wenger was still without Bacary Sagna, so Carl Jenkinson played instead, while Theo Walcott was still on the bench. Roberto Martinez named an unchanged XI from the side that recorded a...
Zonal Marking - Wed Nov 13 11:02 PM
David Moyes recorded the first major victory of his tenure at Old Trafford. Moyes selected Phil Jones in the centre of midfield alongside Michael Carrick, and continued with Shinji Kagawa on the left. Arsene Wenger was without Per Mertesacker and Tomas Rosicky due to flu, so Thomas Vermaelen came...
Zonal Marking - Thu Nov 7 11:41 AM
Dortmund had significantly more shots, but Arsenal snatched a winner and saw out the game efficiently. Jurgen Klopp was without Mats Hummels and Ilkay Gundogan, so named an unchanged side. Arsene Wenger didn’t have anyone back from injury, so kept the same side that defeated Liverpool. This game...
Zonal Marking - Mon Nov 4 10:52 AM
Arsenal triumphed in a fast-paced and tactically interesting contest. With Jack Wilshere and Mathieu Flamini out, Arsene Wenger had no real selection dilemmas. Brendan Rodgers continued with his 3-5-2 system, although was without both first-choice wing-backs, with Glen Johnson a late withdrawal –...
Zonal Marking - Wed Oct 23 4:11 PM
Robert Lewandowski’s late goal gave Dortmund an important victory at the Emirates. Arsene Wenger was without the concussed Mathieu Flamini, so Aaron Ramsey returned. Santi Cazorla isn’t yet at 100% fitness, so Tomas Rosicky replaced him on the left. Jurgen Klopp is still without Ilkay Gundogan an...
Zonal Marking - Tue Oct 1 10:53 PM
Arsene Wenger fielded five natural central midfielders, but Napoli were opened up repeatedly in their left-back zone. Wenger was without a variety of players comfortable in wide roles – Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla, Lukas Podolski and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – while Jack Wilshere was rested, with...
Zonal Marking - Sun Sep 1 11:23 PM
(First things first: all the other big games (Bayern v Chelsea, Man Utd v Chelsea, Man Utd v Liverpool, Barca v Valencia, Barca v Atletico etc) will be included in the ‘new managers’ series which will start this next week. And will hopefully be worth the wait. If that excludes some teams in those...
Zonal Marking - Mon Apr 29 7:42 PM
Despite having little to play for, Manchester United collected a point at the Emirates. Without Olivier Giroud, Arsene Wenger used Lukas Podolski as his main forward. Jack Wilshere was only on the bench. Sir Alex Ferguson named a strong starting line-up, with Rio Ferdinand returning to the defenc...
Zonal Marking - Mon Mar 4 10:54 AM
Tottenham recorded an important victory over their North London rivals, thanks to two identical goals towards the end of the first half. Andre Villas-Boas used Gylfi Sigurdsson rather than Lewis Holtby, while Jermain Defoe was fit enough for the bench. Arsene Wenger used Santi Cazorla on the flan...
Zonal Marking - Thu Feb 21 7:10 PM
Bayern took a commanding lead following a dominant first leg performance. Arsene Wenger chose to leave out Olivier Giroud, using Theo Walcott as the primary striker with Santi Cazorla right and Aaron Ramsey in midfield. Left-back problems forced Thomas Vermaelen into that position. Jupp Heynckes...
Zonal Marking - Sun Jan 20 11:08 PM
Chelsea took charge with a commanding start to the game, then held on in the second half. Rafael Benitez was without Victor Moses and Jon Obi Mikel because of the Africa Cup of Nations, and David Luiz was injured. This meant Ramires and Frank Lampard was the only possible midfield duo, with three...
Zonal Marking - Sat Nov 17 5:48 PM
For the third consecutive season, this fixture saw plenty of goals and featured an impressive comeback. With Wojciech Szszesny back in goal, Arsene Wenger played his expected side – Theo Walcott was fielded on the right, while Thomas Vermaelen continued at left-back. Andre Villas-Boas was without...
Zonal Marking - Sat Nov 3 4:38 PM
Manchester United won comfortably without having to play well. Sir Alex Ferguson named the same side that started last weekend’s win over Chelsea – Tom Cleverley retained his place in the centre of midfield. Arsene Wenger also named an unchanged side from Arsenal’s last league fixture, so Theo Wa...
Zonal Marking - Sat Sep 29 8:01 PM
Chelsea stay at the top of the table after scoring two goals from free-kicks. Arsene Wenger went with the pace of Gervinho rather than the physicality of Olivier Giroud upfront, and continued with Aaron Ramsey on the right – although he had to shuffle into the middle after Abou Diaby’s injury. Ro...
Zonal Marking - Sun Sep 23 11:07 PM
There was plenty of attacking talent on show, but centre-backs Joleon Lescott and Laurent Koscielny got the goals. Roberto Mancini chose Scott Sinclair on the left in the absence of Samir Nasri, with Sergio Aguero returning upfront to partner Edin Dzeko. Arsene Wenger was without Thomas Vermaelen...
Zonal Marking - Sun Sep 2 5:58 PM
Arsenal started nervously but eventually got into their stride to record an impressive win over Liverpool. Brendan Rodgers brought Daniel Agger straight back into the team after he was suspended for the draw against Manchester City, while Nuri Sahin was given his debut in midfield, in place of th...
Zonal Marking - Sun May 6 6:38 PM
It turned out to be the key substitution of the Premier League season. Samir Nasri off, Nigel De Jong on, and Yaya Toure higher up the pitch. It wasn’t necessarily an attacking substitution or a defensive substitution – it changed the way City attacked, but there was no change in the emphasis upo...
Zonal Marking - Wed Apr 11 2:00 PM
Articles on other sites: ESPN Samir Nasri Guardian Possession battles ESPN Tactical fouls Guardian Xavi, Scholes, Pirlo ESPN 5 underachieving sides Guardian Football Weekly podcast ESPN PSG’s identity BT Liverpool tactics ESPN Taarabt FourFourTwo FA Cup previews Betfair Merseyside derby preview
Zonal Marking - Mon Apr 9 3:18 PM
Mikel Arteta’s long-range strike settled a match Arsenal could have won by more. Arsene Wenger made one change from the side that lost to QPR last weekend. Aaron Ramsey, who looked uncomfortable out on the left in that match, was dropped and replaced by Yossi Benayoun, a player who more naturally drifts inside from the flank. Roberto