There´s nothing wrong with Italy´s play. Nothing. They do the fouls, they collect the yellows. But there´s no dirty BS, like the spanish club teams are showing in each close match. Comparing Italy to Atletico isn´t doing them (Italy) justice.Atletico tactics from Italy. 8 in the box, daring them to launch crosses to Origi and Fellaini all day. It's the right choice, just not pretty.
I wasn't criticizing the park-the-bus choice, and you're right that it's typically, even classically Italian. I'd argue Atletico brings an intensity and unity of movement to the approach that not even the Italians display, but the Azzurri were certainly doing it long before Simeone graced the Vicente Calderon.There´s nothing wrong with Italy´s play. Nothing. They do the fouls, they collect the yellows. But there´s no dirty BS, like the spanish club teams are showing in each close match. Comparing Italy to Atletico isn´t doing them (Italy) justice.
The tactics, staying home, play the counter: that´s true and if you know football, you have to say that Atletico play Italian tactics. It was always this way and it will always be this way
I don't think Italy's odds would have changed substantially. They played that like a final and took cards all over the place to secure their win. Which was a fine strategy but they were still opened up several times and could easily have drawn or worse. It was a good performance today but they won't play their way through the entire tournament like thatWhat were Italy's odds to win the whole thing 3 days ago? They look very impressive. Their draw in the knockout round is going to be very tough as they are lined up to play Germany in the Quarterfinals and France in the Semifinals if things go true to form in Groups A, C and E.
Darke was talking about Buffon's career, and greatness, and referenced him staying with Juve when they were relegated because of "financial problems at the club".Thanks, I know about the shenanigans, I just missed the reference during the game.
Good. It's pretty clear the provcateurs are not fans. The Russians should have cancelled this particular research project seven months ago.Russia to be DQ'ed if there's more fan violence inside stadium.
Another weird thing with their roster is that the DMs don't have the positional flexibility of, say Geoff Cameron or Vurnon Anita, to be deployed as an FB. Witsel and Fellaini, forget about it, they don't have nearly the speed needed. Nainggolan has the skills and speed, but probably doesn't have the defensive discipline. If even one of them could play FB that would free up some more options, but nope.Yeah, I agree that Wilmots could just play the fullbacks available to him. I really have no clue how good they are or whether they can get forward and support an attack but it would probably be easier/less risky than going into some crazy Bielsa formation
I have not read abything in the Belgian press about animosity between the different players on the team. But the Belgian press I read is not very gossipy. There is animosity which ebbs and wanes in the population but I don't see it affect the team. If anything, the group seems to like each other a lot as far as I can tell. Many have been playing together since a very young age. Eg when Hazard was celebrating his new Chelsea contract, it was with Fellaini and Benteke as far as I remember so some of them are friends. Tonythepony did make some allusions about Wilmots treating the players like babies, but I was not aware of it.This is a great point that I think people are missing- there are fullbacks on the roster: professional, qualified fullbacks.
The one thing that does kind of get missed is what a political hornets nest the nation is. When my Uncle was visiting a handful of years ago, he said the Flemish/Walloon animosity was shockingly current, with what he felt was legitimate dislike apparent. (Full disclosure- my family is from the Flemish half without reservation). That doesn't even begin to get into the whole Congo fiasco, let alone some of the issues with immigration, radical muslim enclaves, unemployment, far right nationalism, etc. It wouldn't surprise me if there were locker room issues with this team, especially without the strong leadership of Kompany.
One thing I need to give Wilmots credit for was building unity among a fractious group- the national team had been a mess for years, but he did a nice job bringing them together. The influence of Kompany cannot be overstated in that regard either. Maybe Wilmots' other deficiencies are showing through and people are tuning him out at this point.
I'm sure @BelgianSoxFan could give a better summary than I.
There are a lot rumors about him going to Man United. I don't know if there is anything to the rumors but he is a Mendes client so it makes a certain amount of sense.Andre Gomes seems like a player primed for a big move, I'm surprised we don't hear more about him.