Arsenal – Liverpool: Arsenal Play Through Liverpool’s Press To Win Community Shield (1-1, 5-4 After Penalties)

Mikel Arteta went for the same formula that got the best of Manchester City last season: some pressing, some great buildup play and a whole lot of defending in a deep 5-4-1 formation. Though losing a final is never a good thing, Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp might be even more worried about how easy Arsenal were able to play through Liverpool’s famous press. 
Tactical analysis and match report by Erik Elias

In every major European competition the ‘Super Cup’ divides opinions. If you win it, it’s a prize; if you lose it, it was just a glorified friendly. Normally played the week before the league starts, if anything, it offers an insight into where two top teams stand going into the new season. 

But things are and will be a bit different in 2020, meaning this edition of the Community Shield was played in a vacuum, four weeks after the FA Cup final and two weeks before the start of the Premier League. 

Mikel Arteta has largely used a 3-4-3 formation during his spell as Arsenal manager. For the first game of the 2020/21 season he saw no reason to change that. For various reasons, Arsenal could not field or chose not to field Alexandre Lacazette, Dani Ceballos, Mesut Özil, Nicolas Pépé, Lucas Torreira, Willian, Calum Chambers, Pablo Mari, Shkodran Mustafi and Gabriel Martinelli. 

This extensive list of unavailable players led to starts for Rob Holding as the right center-back, Mohamed Elneny next to Granit Xhaka in central midfield and Eddie Nketiah as the striker. It is interesting to note that even with Lacazette out, Arteta still sees Aubameyang as . . .

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Erik Elias (29) is co-founder and chief editor of Between The Posts. Dutch, so admires Johan Cruijff and his football principles, but enjoys writing about other styles as well. Former youth coach. Videoscout at digital scouting consultancy 11tegen11 and FC Groningen. [ View all posts ]


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