Hércules CF 2-2 Villarreal

The second half systems.

After a busy evening, I settled down to watch the second half of Hércules CF-Villarreal – the concluding fixture for matchday seven of the La Liga season.

Hércules CF took a narrow lead into the second half, goals from David Trezeguet and Nelson Valdez blunted by Spain international Joan Capdevila’s brief levelling of the tie.

But a second yellow card for Trezeguet just moments after regaining the lead for last season’s Segunda División champions saw Hércules reduced to ten men for the rest of the game.

Therefore, coach Esteban Vigo set his side out in a 4-4-1 formation for the next batch of 45 minutes, and made a change in midfield by bringing on Francisco Rufete for Tote.

Villarreal instantly monopolised possession in the second half, and their fluid use of midfielders and attackers meant they had five ball-players-cum-bobbers floating in the home side’s half, plus overlapping full-backs. Continue reading

Groß problems at Stuttgart?

Current VfB Stuttgart coach Christian Gross

Stuttgart have picked up the box labelled ‘our midfielders‘, turned it upside down, and given it an almighty shake.

Alexander Hleb (back to Barcelona),Roberto  Hilbert (Beşiktaş) and Martin Lanig (Köln) are all gone, and Sami Khedira, so impressive in the recent World Cup and U21 European Championships, appears Bernabéu-bound.

However, these losses aren’t necessarily all negatives – Hleb was painfully inconsistent, Lanig was deputy in the defensive midfield position to the classy Christian Träsch, while it seems Hilbert and Khedira have been or will be replaced directly. Continue reading