Denmark – England: Southgate’s Tactical Experiment Ends In Stalemate (0-0)

Gareth Southgate made the decision to experiment with a 3-4-3 system for this match against Denmark. However, England ran into problems as they struggled to outplay Denmark’s pressing and were lacking in creativity from central midfield. 
Tactical analysis and match report by Josh Manley.

Denmark started this Nations League campaign with a defeat against Belgium on Saturday. England meanwhile got off to a winning start, beating Iceland 1-0 thanks to a late Raheem Sterling penalty. Prior to that, England had dominated possession but struggled to create chances, as their execution of a flexible 4-3-3 system in possession had some issues in the details. 

On this occasion Gareth Southgate decided to go for a different system, deploying a back three for the first time since the 3-5-2 system used during the World Cup 2018. This time it was a 3-4-3 shape, with a front three of Jadon Sancho, Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling. The main other pieces of team news were England debuts for Conor Coady and Kalvin Phillips at center-back and central midfield respectively. 

Denmark meanwhile started with a nominal 4-2-3-1 shape, with Yussuf Poulsen and Martin Braithwaite taking up wide roles in attack, as Kasper Dolberg played as the striker. Behind him was Eriksen, who played in the center of midfield alongside Christian Nørgaard and Thomas Delaney.

England in possession.

England unconvincing against pressing
England built with a fairly standard 3-4-3 arrangement, with Sancho and Sterling occupying the halfspaces, If you divide the field in five vertical lanes, the halfspaces are the lanes that are not on the . . .

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Josh Manley (21) is a student and aspiring coach. Heavily interested in tactics and strategy in football. Watching teams from all top European leagues, but especially Manchester United and Barcelona. [ View all posts ]


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