23 Oct 2021 08:24:34
Hi Ed's, sorry if this sounds like a really stupid question and I will probably get shot to bits for asking it but something has always puzzled me recently! Why at the kick off do possession obsessed teams such as Liverpool and Man City roll the ball back to a defender and hoof the ball up the left hand side of the pitch with little more than a 50/ 50 chance of retaining the ball? Why don't they just retain possession and build up from the back at that point as well? Not the end of the world or anything like that just always strikes me as odd that all?

{Ed001's Note - it is an odd one, but I believe it is down to stats analysis finding it to be the most effective way to put early pressure on the opposition. Personally I would have thought a bit of variety would be better, but stats don't allow for context so they wouldn't include that it will be more effective when not the only way to begin a game.}

1.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 08:34:30
Thanks for the response Ed, I have been coaching kids for the past 5 years and I try to get them playing ‘the right way’ and thought I might be missing a trick. so to speak.

{Ed001's Note - if you had a kid on the left who was 3 inches taller than his opponent then you might be, but otherwise I would say the best thing to do is mix it up. Just like when you are on the ball, if you always do the same thing it becomes easier to stop than if you do different things. As Sir Bob would say, it's not about the long ball or the short ball, it is about the right ball.}

2.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 09:46:25
I have never understood this either and whilst admittedly I mainly watch LFC, PL and Championship games exclusively, I cannot think of many example where this approach to the start of a half has come off. The one that springs to mind is a Michael Owen goal against Bayern Munich in a super cup game in the early 00’s if memory serves.

3.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 10:04:47
Only a guess but I think the strategy is to put the opposition on the back foot and us on the front foot. If we pass it backwards then the opposition start the game on the front foot pressing. Like I said only a guess.

4.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 10:24:18
Absolutely JK, you want the opposition chasing back early/ worrying about the ball over the top.

5.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 12:07:13
It’s like rugby, lads. Punt the ball deep into the opponent’s corner and let them play from there.
If they make a mistake, it’s deep in their own half.

6.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 12:12:26
Isn’t it just a case of moving their players out of position and getting yours into their half as soon as possible. Most cases you’re aiming for the fast winger or a thrown in far down near their goal. From that it tends to get hoofed back or you win possession high up.

7.) 23 Oct 2021
23 Oct 2021 12:51:08
I can see why it would work if you’re playing a team you know you’re better than. A lot of time it results in a throw in which if they win either forces them to attempt to play out, from deep in their own half so you can press them into a mistake in dangerous areas or they hoof it back to you. Or you win the throw yourself and try work something from further up. I remember Spain doing it to Tahiti in the 2013 confederations cup. I don’t see why you’d do it vs good teams that are capable of playing through you however. The only thing i don’t fully understand is why teams start kind kicking off with one player passing back rather than two, EURO 2016 is when it first started happening i think.