Sunday, 2 November 2014

Bayern vs Dortmund Tactical Analysis : Bayern emphasis on possession while Dortmund content on counter attacking.

Bayern lined up in their intriguing 3-4-2-1 while Dortmund lined up in a very flexible 4-2-3-1 which at times looked like 4-1-2-1-2.

1st Half 

Bayern were content on holding possession with it being totally evident in the game no real direct penetration even Lewandowski at times dropped as deep as his own half to ensure possession kept flowing, with Lewandowski dropping deep it allowed players such as Muller to get in the space which he created by dropping deep.

Another thing i noticed about Bayern's 3-4-2-1 formation was its shape on the ball especially the positioning of Alonso becasue he kept dropping into the defence so it made them look more of a 4 at the back rather than a 3 at the back as shown by the picture below :

This extra defensive protection allowed Lahm to venture forward and allow him to use him creative mind to create chances which he did on numerous occasions especially for Robben on that right hand side one in particular where he back heeled it towards the path of Robben forcing Weidenfeller into a save after 5 minutes.

Dortmund however were happy to sit back with the back four and the 3 screening midfielders in front to help cover the wings knowing that they could counter attack with Reus, Aubameyang and Kagawa who stayed high up the pitch without having to drop deep and help with the defending. The trio ran the 3 centre backs plus Alonso ragged in the first half. Dortmund would win the ball back and try to hit the ball quickly to the flanks were either Aubemyang and Reus would be with Kagawa waiting centrally, this is the exact situation where the goal came from a quick counter to the flanks great cross by Aubameyang and a nice header home by Reus.
Below you can see how closely the Dortmund trio worked together:

2nd Half

At the start of the second half Subotic came on for Hummel's with a reported foot injury. It was clear to see that Bayern upped the tempo trying to be a little more direct on the ball however Dortmund was the opposite as expected they sat a little deeper and Kagawa was being used deeper than he was in the first half as Dortmund were scared of losing their 1 goal lead with the wide players becoming more defensively minded.

A constant theme in the second half was Bayern spraying the ball out to the right hand side were Robben was this may be due to some success Robben had in the first half in terms of his dribbling in side, also benetia also made some overlapping runs on the right to help create width and maybe draw Dortmund out.

Game changing sub by Pep

Dortmund held firm and Bayern were finding it incredibly difficult to open Dortmund up so Pep brought on Ribery to inject life and directness to the game which he did very well. Klopp in turn substituted Kagawa for Grasskeutz to sure things up and hold on to the 1-0 lead but as soon as the sub was made Ribery dribbled the ball, shot the ball deflected and Lewandowski equalised.

Near the end of the game both teams bring on strikers in a ploy to win the game but on the 84th  minute  Subotic poor clearance due to pressure from Ribery resulted in him bringing him down for a penalty which Robben scored.


Bayern in the end where lucky to win the game but based on some of the first half chances they probably deserved to win, Pep Guardiola's decision to bring on Ribery was the game changer. As for Dortmund they will feel hard done by because they will probably feel they deserved a point coming so close after defending brilliantly all game who knows what would of happened had Hummel's stayed on the pitch.

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