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Man United 1-0 Aston Villa Post-Match Tactical Analysis

Man United 1-0 Aston Villa Post-Match Tactical Analysis

English FA Cup: Man United 1-0 Aston Villa Post-Match Tactical Analysis as Manchester United go through to the FA cup fourth round

Yesterday say Man United win Aston Villa to qualify for the FA cup fourth round. We at BraggsSports have taken our time o bring out some tactical aspects of the teams, the game and the coaches right here.

Man United Analysis

Man United are dysfunctional regardless of who is on the pitch or in the dugout this season. There is a clear wider malaise and to varying levels, form has fallen off a cliff. Clearly a desperate need for a holding midfielder but routinely they’re much worse than they should be.

There can be a never-ending stream of analysis into tactics and player’s shortcomings but this squad was comfortably top 3 in England for 18 months, signed 3 top players and are now outplayed by relegation zone and mid-table teams. No player/coach has escaped that malaise.

MUST READ: Premier League: Man City vs Liverpool post-match analysis

Man United absolutely got away with that result yesterday. Aston Villa dominated them and can feel aggrieved with the VAR decision. Shaw could have been sent off twice.

Man United were dreadful and could easily have been well beaten but Aston Villa only have themselves to blame. Officials didn’t get anything wrong apart from VAR official seemingly make a balls of the protocol for disallowing the goal.

Man United’s pressing was abysmal in all facets – Varane didn’t control the last line so there were gaps and spaces between the lines because the block wasn’t compact vertically, Rashford and Greenwood don’t press tigerishly ala Salah/Mané, Shaw rarely backs up the press with intensity.

They also didn’t dominate central duels because Fred isn’t a top athlete. Shaw is one to speak like he did after the Wolves game because he’s never been a top presser – he is regularly late to what should be his pressing trigger, and it was the same with England too.
A feature of any good pressing team is the press being backed up by the players behind the front line of pressing. If Rashford presses a right back who recycles to the CB, Rashford can press the CB (depending on the situation), but Shaw must back him up. Same for Greenwood-Dalot partnership.

This type of situation doesn’t happen for Man United. They’re always late and played around. How many times did we see Rashford press the CB’s or the ‘keeper before the ball is easily passed out to catch who is unmarked and Shaw is lazily dawdling out to the right back?

The best wide players have the IQ to adapt to what the defence gives them; they choose to pass, dribble or shoot based on the situation. Rashford and Greenwood often make up their mind as soon as they receive the ball and then try to force that regardless of the defence.

Until they both learn to not force it and adapt in accordance to what the defence gives them they will *never* be top players. This is something the elites like Ribéry, Robben, Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, etc all had in them at their younger age. Rashford and Greenwood *have* to learn this or they’ll never reach the top.

Man United played poorly, but the structure is there. Implement an effective high press by the end of the season and whether it’s Rangnick, Ten Hag, Pochettino, or whoever else in charge next season, life should be much, much easier for them.

I have to believe it’s much easier to take an effective pressing team and change elements of how they press than to implement a high press from the ground up. Man United haven’t pressed properly on a consistent basis since Louis Van Gaal was manager.

What both Man United and Aston Villa Lacked in the game

A large theme within that game was the lack of vertical compactness from each team and it is a result of Varane and Mings dropping too deep. They did not back up the press by controlling the last line and being aggressive positionally. As such, players receive BTL (between the lines) with ease.

Or they defend too deep within the box and are a direct consequence of goals conceded i.e. extra space to cut the ball back into, more chaos because each team is defending closer to goal, etc. Man United badly need Maguire to get back to his best so Varane can play RCB.

MUST READ: Post Match Analysis: Chelsea 1-1 Aston Villa

Is Steven Gerrard World Class Manager currently?

Any team with outlets, technical quality, and a compact mid-block will be competitive and cause teams problems because that’s difficult to deal with, but there’s no elite team in 2022 that don’t press high within a top structure aggressively. As it stands, Steven Gerrard = David Moyes (West Ham manager) level.
People saying that this may not be Gerrard’s long-term plan obviously didn’t watch Rangers. I watched them like 7 times at a competitive level (Europa). Tactically, they were the exact same. It is still a good appointment from Aston Villa and Gerrard *WILL* succeed there, but the plan doesn’t correlate to the elite level.

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