Manchester City – Chelsea: A Dry Run For The Champions League Favors Tuchel (1-2)
Pep Guardiola loves an experiment, but even this was more audacious than normal. Manchester City traded total control to find ideas past Europe’s most challenging defensive block. Chelsea had also rotated but found routes through thanks to effective right-side interchange. A 90th minute winner draws the battle lines.
Tactical analysis and match report by Joel Parker.
Previous matchups this season, between the blue halves of Manchester and London , had already produced significant moments. January’s demolition job at Stamford Bridge showcased City’s flexi-ball at its peak. The wide rotations pierced through an incoherent Chelsea counterpress, After losing possession, a team immediately moves towards the ball as a unit to regain possession, or at least slow down the pace of the counterattack. which ultimately spelt the end of Frank Lampard. The FA Cup semi-final highlighted their renaissance under Thomas Tuchel, as their conservative block and skill on the transition produced a performance, which bested a team that looked streets ahead, earlier in the season.
With both clubs confirming their spots in the Champions League final, this game served as an important dress rehearsal, with stakes still in place. A win for City would confirm Pep Guardiola’s third title in four years, whilst Chelsea require points for a position in the top four.
Both Guardiola and Tuchel made a mass amount of changes . . .