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45 results for "barcelona"

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  1. Key individual Champions League quarterfinal matchups

    Michael Cox

    The Champions League has reached the quarterfinal stage. Here are the four key matchups for this week's first legs. Manchester United vs. Bayern Munich: United full-backs vs. Bayern wingers Ahead of Tuesday's clash at Old Trafford, many have re...

    Blog | March 31, 2014
  2. Man City's biggest problem? A lack of leadership

    Michael Cox

    In the unlikely event you haven't noticed, Manchester City have a significant problem at centre-back. Vincent Kompany remains excellent but is unable to depend upon on a reliable partner. Manuel Pellegrini favours Martin Demichelis, despite the Ar...

    Blog | March 13, 2014
  3. Relying on over-the-hill defenders: An explanation

    Michael Cox

    When Manuel Pellegrini announced his team sheet for Tuesday night's match with Barcelona, there seemed one obvious weak link -- Martin Demichelis. It wasn't just that the Argentine was in the side at centre-back, a position he's struggled in throu...

    Blog | February 20, 2014
  4. Key matchups in this week's Champions League fixtures

    Michael Cox

    This week sees the return of the Champions League after its winter break, with an extremely impressive list of fixtures. In fact, it's arguable that the four most exciting ties of the round are all being played this week. Next week's schedule looks r...

    Blog | February 17, 2014
  5. The masters of universality

    Michael Cox

    In a tactical sense, 2013 hasn't been a particularly fascinating year: There have been no major innovations and no widespread return to a specific formation or style. There have been individual moments of interest, and coaches have tried new things, ...

    Blog | December 31, 2013
  6. What makes an offence dynamic? Here's a checklist...

    Michael Cox

    Tottenham's 5-0 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday proved to be the final nail in Andre Villas-Boas' coffin -- the Portuguese coach was sacked less than 24 hours later, to little surprise. It was one of those astonishingly one-sided games, between two ...

    Blog | December 17, 2013
  7. Toni Kroos has earned right to be Bayern's key

    Michael Cox

    This summer's speculation about Pep Guardiola's probable Bayern Munich system took a simple format, one that fell in line with the standard approach for season previews: They assessed the Bayern side from the previous campaign and then considered whe...

    Blog | November 21, 2013
  8. Sergio Busquets has become an key component of the new Barcelona

    Michael Cox

    One of the fundamental principles of Barcelona's philosophy is the consistent use of a 4-3-3 formation. It is their trio in midfield -- the heart of any football side, but particularly one that insists upon possession dominance and bossing the ce...

    Blog | October 24, 2013
  9. The basic 4-4-2 is becoming trendy again

    Michael Cox

    Some elements of football strategy evolve consistently in one direction over a long period, becoming increasingly extreme. Other elements appear more cyclical -- moving routinely between two opposing concepts, which come in and out of fashion. The...

    Blog | October 04, 2013
  10. Espanyol are embracing their role as Barcelona's second team

    Michael Cox

    Big football cities are defined by rivalry. There's the odd one-club settlement and some countries like France and the Netherlands that barely feature any intracity conflicts. However, travel to Milan, London, Madrid, Manchester, Moscow, Lisbon, G...

    Blog | September 26, 2013
  11. Bojan still struggling to find his feet

    Michael Cox

    It certainly isn't the group of death; it's not even the second-most exciting group in this season's Champions League. But there was something rather magical about Barcelona, AC Milan, Ajax and Celtic -- four previous European Cup winners -- being dr...

    Blog | September 17, 2013
  12. Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho are each other's windmill

    Michael Cox

    "Both of us want to win," Pep Guardiola once said when asked about the differences between him and Jose Mourinho. "But our paths are very different." The rivalry between Guardiola and Mourinho wasn't supposed to be quite so bitter. In fact, it sta...

    Blog | August 29, 2013
  13. Pep Guardiola will live under Bayern microscope

    Michael Cox

    Two months on, it's worth remembering how staggeringly successful Bayern Munich were in the 2012-13 season. Not only did they complete the treble, they won the Bundesliga in astonishingly convincing fashion -- with more points than any other side...

    Blog | August 08, 2013
  14. The evolution of Mark Hughes' Stoke City

    Michael Cox

    Considering Stoke City are traditionally considered on the opposite end of football's ideological spectrum to Barcelona, it's peculiar that their new manager, Mark Hughes, once represented the Catalan club in his playing days. But whereas "the Bar...

    Blog | July 23, 2013
  15. Champions semi pits similarities of countrymen Goetze, Ozil

    Michael Cox

    It's Spain versus Germany. League leaders against league leaders; last season's champions against last season's champions. Possession versus possession, counter-attack versus counter-attack. Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid...

    Blog | April 23, 2013
  16. Lavezzi's energy picks its spots on the pitch

    Michael Cox

    Barcelona's narrow away-goals victory over PSG was a fantastic tie, the type of contest European Cup football is all about. There were a variety of subplots: Zlatan Ibrahimovic against his former side, David Beckham's surprise start in Paris, Lionel ...

    Blog | April 11, 2013