Tactics Journal

by Kyle Boas

Analyzing football tactics

Musiala showing to the ball when Goretzka drops

Against Dortmund, when Leon Goretzka dropped to the left of Eric Dier, Jamal Musiala checked to the ball, moving into the half-space, and Alphonso Davies pushed up the wing. If you block off that pass, Bayern Munich are forced to switch.

Figure 1.1 - Before Leon Goretzka drops.
Figure 1.2 - Leon Goretzka drops back to the left of Eric Dier, Jamal Musiala checks to the ball in the half-space, and Alphonso Davies pushes forward.

Goretzka won’t look to pass to Davies. Davies is there to hold width and be an attacking threat when Musiala receives and turns on the half-turn. Any pass into him will be negative because those two defenders closest to him close in, block off the pass to Musiala, and then he’s forced back to Goretzka.

Figure 2.1 - Leon Goretzka drops to the left of Eric Dier and Alphonso Davies immediately pushes forward up the wing. Jamal Musiala makes the run to check to the ball.
Figure 2.2 - Jamal Musiala calls for the ball when Leon Goretzka receives the ball.

Every time Goretzka would drop, this automation would kick into gear. This happened all throughout this match versus Dortmund.

If Goretzka recycles the ball or plays the ball central to Müller, that’s the trigger for Musiala to then make a run across the field into the center of the pitch.

If this automation is repeated, I think it will be important to always have someone shadow covering Musiala when Goretzka receives. Look over your shoulder.

Once Goretzka vacates that space central, the middle of the pitch becomes very open, which makes it easier for teams to close down and block off passes from Müller. The opposition will have the numbers.

Match: Bayern Munich 0-2 Dortmund, 30 March 2024

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