Tactics Journal

by Kyle Boas

Analyzing football tactics

Jesse Marsch philosophy at RB Salzburg and Leeds United

Watch Jesse Marsch explain how he implemented his philosophy into RB Salzburg and Leeds United in-training and in-game. Minimum width, “the net”, counter movements, channel runs, tap-ins, and counter-pressing are covered.

We want 80% of our plays, in the run of play, to be tap-ins.

That’s a telling quote. Leeds United were not a team that had trouble attacking last season. They played without fear because they had to, to execute that quick direct style of attack, on the ground. Like David facing off against Goliath. No pragmatism.

The problem was stamina.

Leeds United were a handful to start the game, but after 30 minutes, they fall completely flat. When you’re frequently losing the ball, it’s hard to maintain a high enough level of energy to constantly counter-press. It’s a lot to be chasing at full speed for 90 minutes.

Then when you try to maintain minimum width, once you lose control of the center of the pitch, the opponent attacks the wide areas. That stretches the second line, the far-side is slow to tuck in, and teams can pick away at the gaps between the lines, and play right through them.

Few teams can maintain that high level to close gaps. It works with a team of supreme elite athletes, like at Liverpool or RB Salzburg, but it didn’t work at Leeds United.

Back to top Share on Twitter Email this post Copy link