Tim Vickery’s Notes From South America: Home Coaches In Brazil Face Uphill Battle

There’s a motive that Brazil’s outcomes improved so dramatically as quickly as coach Tite took over three years in the past.

Tite units up his sides according to fashionable practise. The overall object of defending is to win the ball, ideally as excessive up the sphere as doable. However the place his soccer is pro-active, the home Brazilian recreation has develop into overwhelmingly reactive – the place the item of defending is to interrupt the sport.

The context right here is the dearth of job safety of home coaches, and a calendar so full of video games that innovation is tough in addition to dangerous. And so the mindset is cautious; deep defences, centre backs on high of the goalkeeper. And this, after all, has repercussions on the remainder of the group. It implies that the traces are far aside from one another, and that unreliable lengthy balls are wanted to hyperlink sectors of the aspect. The issues of Brazilian soccer are certainly not restricted to the drain of expertise to Europe and elsewhere.  There’s additionally a disaster of concepts.

Fortunately this disaster has now develop into clear – particularly after final 12 months’s Copa Libertadores, the place regardless of a big monetary benefit over their continental rivals, Brazil’s golf equipment fell by the wayside, victims of their very own extreme warning.

It implies that a battle is now raging for the soul of the home Brazilian recreation. There are coaches making an attempt to place into apply a bolder mannequin of play, defending increased, in search of to dominate possession and impose themselves on the sport. The house grown Fernando Diniz is trying this on a shoestring with Fluminense. Former Chile and Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli is making an impression with Santos. And now their ranks have been swollen by the arrival from Portugal of the ex-Benfica and Sporting Lisbon boss Jorge Jesus.

Just a few months again Jesus was linked with Vasco da Gama and Atletico Mineiro. He did properly to show them down. As an alternative he signed with Rio de Janeiro giants Flamengo, who provided him two huge benefits; a squad of undoubted depth and high quality, and the timing of the deal, the place Jesus may use the Copa America pause to spend time on the coaching floor and mattress in his concepts.

And his dwelling debut became a celebration. A packed Maracana may hardly comprise its pleasure as Flamengo dispatched Goias, flying excessive within the desk, with a 6-1 rout.

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The work of the coach was plain to see. Particularly hanging was his use of the 2 broad midfielders; left footed Everton Ribeiro performed on the precise, and proper footed Giorgian De Arrascaeta on the left.  However each operated in a hall properly in from the touchline – outdoors the consolation zone of the Goias marking midfielders, however not blocking the overlap of Flamengo’s attacking full backs. As a consequence, there have been angles everywhere for fast passes – between the total backs and the attacking midfielders, behind to playmaker Diego and ahead to the entrance two. With proximity between the traces and angles for a go, Flamengo made the ball fizz, developing a succession of fast one and two contact strikes, and so they may simply have scored double figures.

However there may be at all times a threat.  The slightest lack of depth within the marking as soon as the transfer breaks down leaves the defence extraordinarily weak. There have been occasions when Goias received into the house behind Flamengo’s excessive line – certainly, solely the width of the close to publish stopped the guests taking a 2-1 lead. Goalkeeper Diego Alves doesn’t look fully comfy within the sweeper position – the earlier Wednesday, within the debut recreation of the brand new coach, Flamengo have been very fortunate to come back away with a 1-1 draw away to Athletico Paranaense within the first leg of the home cup quarter remaining, when the keeper received away with a transparent case of dealing with the ball outdoors his space.

The large video games come thick and quick. The return match in opposition to Athletico is that this Wednesday. Within the subsequent two midweeks Flamengo face Emelec of Ecuador within the first knock out spherical of the Copa Libertadores – the membership’s clear precedence. The Jorge Jesus mission may very well be blown off track with fast eliminations from these knock out competitions.  However within the battle for the soul of the Brazilian recreation, his time accountable for the nation’s hottest membership is already proving a supply of footballing fascination.

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