Football Tactics For Beginners:How To Watch Football-Part 2

You can read the first part hereDefensive Phase I always try to analyse the defensive phase of a team before the attack. Most professional managers...

Latest Posts

The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it’s impact on Football

Not in Kansas AnymoreA century ago, amidst the poultry and pig farms in a small corner of Kansas, a local doctor became inundated...

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Big Sam’s tactics against Liverpool show the template to stifle Klopp’s side

Two complete opposites came up in the congested Christmas fixture list, as Liverpool in great form sitting at the top of the table look...

The Meteoric Rise of RB Leipzig: From Tier Five Football to the Champions League

The best football clubs in the world usually have a storied history, years of success, and generations of fans. However, one of the best...

4 players Man United can target in January transfer window to challenge for the title

Manchester United after an up and down start to the season find themselves 5 points behind Liverpool with a game in hand. After being...

The Return of Strike Partnerships in the Premier League? Part 1

No matter the make-up, the notion of a strike partnership – two out-and-out attackers, often with very different strengths and calling cards, working seamlessly...

Man United expected lineup, tactics against City: Solskajer to go back to 4-3-3 formation

Manchester United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are under tremendous pressure after their disastrous performance against RB Leipzig which saw them drop out of Champions...

Football Books

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Foul- The Beautiful Game, An Ugly Truth [Book Excerpt]

The clip-clop of football boot studs on concrete echoed through the tunnel over the hum of distant crowd noise. A drenched team of players...

Best Football Analytics Books

We have compiled a list of the best football analytics books for the casual football fan. Football analytics and data science/machine learning in general...

The Best Football Books of 2019

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2020, we have compiled a list of the best...

The Best Football Books of 2018

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2019, we have compiled a list of the best...

Analysis of Man City’s 9 league losses or The Importance of Kevin De Bruyne

With debates regarding the PFA Player of the Year vote for the Premier League, I decided to dig deeper and research the Kevin de Bruyne case. I found out some interesting things that people maybe haven’t really made a bigger point out of than they should have been. If we are talking about Messi-dependencia, then we should also be talking about Kevin-dependencia in the absolutely same breath.

I have seen many people claim that Laporte’s injury is what cost City the title, but I’m absolutely convinced that it’s all about The Kevin.

De Bruyne has 32 league starts this season. He has scored or assisted in all but EIGHT of those starts. Absolutely insane return for any player, but especially a midfielder.

Manchester City have lost 9 of their 38 PL games this season:

And here’s a breakdown of City’s nine losses this season and how De Bruyne’s involvement may have impacted the results:

GameComment
Norwich – City 3-2De Bruyne comes on as a substitute – too late to salvage the game
City – Wolves 0-2De Bruyne misses out with injury
Liverpool – City 3-1De Bruyne is marked out of the game and manages to complete 32 passes for the entire game – less than Alisson
City – United 1-2KdB has a decent game, but with an absent Aguero and with a good performance United take the three points deservedly
Wolves – City 3-2Kevin goes off, Wolves score two to complete a comeback, may seem unrelated on its own, but City can’t win without KDB it seems
Spurs – City 2-0If Mourinho knows how to do one thing well, it’s how to take an important player out of the game. Only Ederson and Aguero from City completed less passes
United – City 2-0De Bruyne misses out with injury
Chelsea – City 2-1De Bruyne scores from a free kick, Fernandinho does a Suarez and Liverpool win the league
Southampton – City 1-0De Bruyne comes on as a substitute – unable to grow into the game and have any significant impact

 

Legend:

  • if bolded – Kevin did not start the game
  • if bolded and italicized – Kevin was subbed off while City were winning
  • if only italicized – a “top 6” clash

Main takeaway:

If De Bruyne is isolated, marked out or his influence on the game is minimized (i.e. what Mourinho, Klopp, partially Lampard and Ole did) or doesn’t play at all, there’s a ridiculously high chance of beating City. If De Bruyne started and completed all 38 games so far, the title race would probably be a bit more exciting. To me, he’s an annoyingly deserving candidate for Player of the Season, despite my allegiance still lying with Virgil Van Dijk, who if anything, is even better than last season.

Should City be worried?

Hmm, this one I’d rather leave to the more knowledgeable City fans. I think they still have a fantastic squad, but these stats aren’t exactly reassuring. Did something change from last season when City won the league despite lengthy absences from De Bruyne? In my opinion, City are significantly weakened this season, be it due to Kompany’s absence, mental fatigue from the last two campaigns, the bad form of several players, or Laporte’s injury, and that Kevin is able to paper over the cracks on his own. A midfield of Rodri, De Bruyne and Foden sounds good on paper, but it will be a tough task for City to replace Fernandinho and David Silva.

Related

The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it’s impact on Football

Not in Kansas AnymoreA century ago, amidst the poultry and pig farms in a small corner of Kansas, a local doctor became inundated...

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Big Sam’s tactics against Liverpool show the template to stifle Klopp’s side

Two complete opposites came up in the congested Christmas fixture list, as Liverpool in great form sitting at the top of the table look...

The Meteoric Rise of RB Leipzig: From Tier Five Football to the Champions League

The best football clubs in the world usually have a storied history, years of success, and generations of fans. However, one of the best...

Who is likely to be in the Premier League next year?

As we approach the Christmas period, which traditionally marks the halfway season in the Premier League, many fans will be starting to do one...

How Manchester City became one of the best clubs in England

Manchester City remained a mediocre club for a long time in England. They couldn’t dream of winning the Premier League title and finishing in...

The Return of Strike Partnerships in the Premier League? Part 1

No matter the make-up, the notion of a strike partnership – two out-and-out attackers, often with very different strengths and calling cards, working seamlessly...

Man United expected lineup, tactics against City: Solskajer to go back to 4-3-3 formation

Manchester United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are under tremendous pressure after their disastrous performance against RB Leipzig which saw them drop out of Champions...

France Boss Didier Deschamps Seems To Be Confused Over Chelsea Striker Olivier Giroud

Less than a month after warning Olivier Giroud he could lose his spot on the France national side if he doesn’t play more minutes...

Latest Posts

The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it’s impact on Football

Not in Kansas AnymoreA century ago, amidst the poultry and pig farms in a small corner of Kansas, a local doctor became inundated...

The Best Football Books of 2020

It's been another eventful year in the world of football. As we look forward to 2021, we have compiled a list of the best...

Big Sam’s tactics against Liverpool show the template to stifle Klopp’s side

Two complete opposites came up in the congested Christmas fixture list, as Liverpool in great form sitting at the top of the table look...

The Meteoric Rise of RB Leipzig: From Tier Five Football to the Champions League

The best football clubs in the world usually have a storied history, years of success, and generations of fans. However, one of the best...

Don't Miss

Dr. Carneiro or: How I should learn not to stop the game and love the boss

Hundreds of journalists this week have condemned Jose Mourinho for his treatment of Eva Carneiro and Jon Fearn after they wrongly ran onto the...

Súper Dépor! The rise and fall of Deportivo La Coruña

At the StartWith the exception of a 2nd place finish to Helenio Herrera’s Atlético Madrid in 1948/49, Deportivo La Coruña have historically plied their...

Football And Alcohol

“When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.”Football and booze go a long long way back, in...

How Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona Reinvented Total Football

Arrigo Sachi, the mastermind of the Milan side of the 80′s, had once staked a claim that the next tactical revolution in the game,...

The ironic situation at Olympique de Marseille

Since the American Businessman, Frank McCourt bought the club in 2016, and despite a Europa League final two years ago, OM has failed to...

Football History

The Football match which started a war

Plenty of football stadiums have statues standing outside of them. There's strange one here and there (Michael Jackson formerly outside Craven Cottage springs to...

The long & bizarre history behind why Red Bull chose Leipzig as the hub for their football club

When Red Bull tried to set foot into German football for the first time, they initially tried to use the same method they had...

Lifted Over The Turnstiles: Scotland’s Football Grounds In The Black & White Era

This most comprehensive book about old Scottish football grounds ever published, Lifted Over the Turnstiles contains almost 200 photos of 42 football stadiums here...

Hungary – The Golden Team that never quite made it.

When you look back at the history of past World Cup winners and European Championship winners the usual names by in large stand out....

Remembering Arthur Wharton: The First Black Professional Footballer

In an interview from 1888, Arthur Wharton recalled overhearing a conversation between two fellow track competitors some years before. “Who’s he,” one rhetorically asked,...