World Cup 2010 Group D: Football Manager Analysis

Serbia v Ghana

Serbia’s system was built on organisation. A typical 4-4-2 shape, they played in quite a traditional style, with two wingers, two full backs and a split midfield and attack. Zigic dropped deep, almost to an AMC position while the rest of the side held their shape and built behind them. This allowed the Serbs to play to their major strength; height and size.

Ghana on the other hand played a much quicker 4-3-3 strategy, looking to move the ball through the lines quickly on the counter attack. The forwards were able to move in and out of each other, although their movement was not always efficient. The quick movement allowed the wing players and Gyan to receive the ball, but they didn’t always have an outlet. The MCs closed down the opposition quickly and looked to launch the counter, while the defence, like the Serbians, were able to use their size to keep the opposition at bay.

Ghana formation v SerbiaSerbia formation v Ghana

Player Instructions – Serbia

Pos. Role Duty
GK 1 Vladimir STOJKOVIC Keeper Defend
DL 3 Aleksandar KOLAROV Fullback Attack
DCl 13 Aleksandar LUKOVIC Limited Defender Defend
DCr 5 Nemanja VIDIC Limited Defender Defend
DR 6 Branislav IVANOVIC Fullback Support
MCl 11 Nenad MILIJAS Central Midfielder Defend
MCr 10 Dejan STANKOVIC Central Midfielder Support
ML 14 Milan JOVANOVIC Winger Attack
MR 17 Milos KRASIC Winger Attack
FCl 9 Marko PANTELIC Poacher Attack
STr 15 Nikola ZIGIC Target man Support

Team Instructions

Philosophy Balanced
Passing More direct
Creative Freedom Default
Closing Down Default
Tackling Default
Marking Default
Crossing Float
Roaming Default
Main Strategy Balanced

Player Instructions – Ghana

Pos. Role Duty
GK 22 Richard KINGSON Keeper Defend
DL 2 Hans SARPEI Fullback Support
DCl 15 Isaac VORSAH Central Defender Defend
DCr 5 John MENSAH Limited Defender Defend
DR 4 John PANTSIL Fullback Attack
DMC 6 Anthony ANNAN Defensive midfielder Defend
MCl 21 Kwadwo ASAMOAH Ball-wining midfielder Defend
MCr 23 Kevin Prince BOATENG Central Midfielder Support
MR 12 Prince TAGOE Wide midfielder Attack
AML 13 Andre AYEW Winger Attack
ST Asamoah GYAN Advanced forward Attack

Team Instructions

Philosophy Rigid
Passing Default
Creative Freedom Default
Closing Down Default
Tackling Default
Marking Man
Crossing Default
Roaming Default
Main Strategy Counter

Germany v Australia

What could have been an intriguing game turned into a complete mismatch. Germany played effectively a 4-2-3-1, quite a departure from their traditional shape. The wingers were able to offer a lot of support down the flanks while Klose roamed for space in the centre. Supporting this structure was the “number 10″ play maker, Oezil, who was able to drop deep and wide to pick up the ball and lay it off for the forward players. Further back, the defensive midfield players worked alongside the back four to block off attacks by the Australians. It was certainly a more free-flowing and energetic German side that we are perhaps used to, but it was made to look far more than the sum of its parts by a lacklustre Australian side.

Australia were forced into two game plans. The first was a tenacious 4-4-2 system built on two holding midfielders and two forwards who were encouraged to drop deep to support the midfield. Unfortunately, it was completely overrun by the German attack which was able to overload nearly every position on the pitch. Its asymmetry was also a major weakness as Germany were equally equipped to attack down the left, the right and through the middle.

This led to “plan B”; Cahill was to play up front on his own, while the midfield was restructured into a deep-lying 4-2-3-1. The central midfielders were pulled back to cover the defence, and the wingers were pushed a little wider and further up. Did it work? We may never know. Cahill was harshly sent off for what might be termed an “orange card” tackle, and the whole plan had to be revised again. By this point, however, the game was well and truly lost, and damage limitation was the name of the game.

Germany formation v AustraliaAustralia formation v Germany

Player Instructions – Australia

Pos. Role Duty
GK 1 Mark SCHWARZER Keeper Defend
DL 11 Scott CHIPPERFIELD Fullback Support
DCl 3 Craig MOORE Central Defender Defend
DCr 2 Lucas NEILL Limited Defender Defend
DR 8 Luke WILKSHIRE Wing-back Attack
DMCc 16 Carl VALERI Defensive midfielder Defend
DMCr 13 Vince GRELLA Defensive midfielder Support
MCl 5 Jason CULINA Ball-winning midfielder Support
MR 7 Brett EMERTON Winger Support
FCl 4 Tim CAHILL Deep-lying forward Attack
FCr 19 Richard GARCIA Deep-lying forward Attack

Team Instructions

Philosophy Very rigid
Passing Direct
Creative Freedom Less
Closing Down More
Tackling Default
Marking Man
Crossing Float
Roaming Default
Main Strategy Counter

Player Instructions – Germany

Pos. Role Duty
GK 1 Manuel NEUER Keeper Defend
DL 14 Holger BADSTUBER Fullback Attack
DCl 17 Per MERTESACKER Limited Defender Defend
DCr 3 Arne FRIEDRICH Limited Defender Defend
DR 16 Philipp LAHM Wing-back Attack
DMCl 6 Sami KHEDIRA Defensive midfielder Support
DMCr 7 Bastian SCHWEINSTEIGER Defensive midfielder Defend
AML 10 Lukas PODOLSKI Winger Attack
AMC 8 Mesut OEZIL Advanced playmaker Attack
AMR 13 Thomas MUELLER Winger Attack
ST 11 Miroslav KLOSE Poacher Attack

Team Instructions

Philosophy Fluid
Passing Short
Creative Freedom More
Closing Down Default
Tackling Default
Marking Default
Crossing Default
Roaming Default
Main Strategy Attacking

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