Tactical analysis of Arsenal - Wolves 1-1

Arsenal – Wolverhampton Wanderers: Emery’s switch of formation fails to overcome well-organized Wolves (1-1)

Wolves organized themselves well at the Emirates Stadium, scored an early goal and got very close to what would have been a deserved away win. Arsenal’s offense was ineffective for the entire match, despite Unai Emery’s formation switch at half-time. In the end, an unlikely goal rescued a point for the home side.

Arsenal’s manager Unai Emery is enjoying a very good start to his managerial stint in North London - result-wise that is – even though these results have already started to cool down a bit. After a long winning streak across several competitions, Arsenal had drawn their last two Premier League games going into this match. And although it may feel like a new dawn for the club, the 4-2-3-1 system that was so dear to Arsène Wenger is still in place.

Wolves are one of only two Premier League teams to field a back three week-in-week-out.  Huddersfield is the other team that always plays with three central defenders. They play in a 3-4-2-1 shape, with a starting lineup that boasts loads of Southern European talent.

Against Arsenal, they fielded an exclusively Portuguese square in midfield, a spectacularly talented bunch of four, when taking into account that this is a newly promoted side. Rúben Neves and João Moutinho form the double pivot 4-2-3-1 is one of the most frequently occurring formations in football. The two most defensive midfielders are called a ‘double pivot’. , with Hélder Costa and Ivan Cavaleiro playing as the team’s offensive midfielders.


Wolves offensive midfielders do a job on Arsenal’s build-up

Wolves stuck to very specific . . .

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Erik Elias (25) 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. Scout. 'Quality without results is pointless. Results without quality is boring.' [ View all posts ]


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