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Football News: It's impossible to compare different Football Eras

It's impossible to compare different Football Eras
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The fact Sir Alex Ferguson was able to win so many leagues and never hit 90 points or that teams have become champions with 75-80 points and teams have been successful with very different styles of play, which were effective in the previous era can't be compared to today's game.

Anyone read the book on klopp's career where there's a chapter on Wolfgang Frank bringing a flat defence into German football for the first time when everyone played with a sweeper. Klopp said he knew straight away that the sweeper system would never be good enough again despite it being thought as the best and only shape at the time.

Manchester United, Arsenal and Leicester City have won leagues with 442, Chelsea, Manchester City and now Liverpool have used 433 to be the best, 352 has been used to win a league. it's all relevant to the time and level of football and players either hitting high or suffering low form at points of their career. There's no doubt that the physical and discipline side of things are superior today with increased technology, tests and science playing it's part while the drinking culture is gone.

Manchester United's 99 team wouldn't beat Liverpool with their 442 side lacking pace, we would hurt them with our intensity, but that's only because 20 years ago they played in a way which was effective at the time. Back then David Beckham and Neville would never have had to face Sadio Mane and Robertson levels of energy. Football like all sports increase in standards naturally but it's impossible to compare era's as there's no point of reference.

Look at Gascoigne, Merson or Le Tissier as players who in today's game would likely not be able to play as they did back then as current Premier League teams have tactics not made for players like that anymore. Genius players like Bergkamp, Zidane, Ronaldinho would struggle against modern day high energy pressing teams who can cover more ground and chase harder than the teams they used to destroy who often played at a pace to suit their strengths.

I feel like players in the mould of Ozil, Erikson, Isco are recent examples of players who have suffered as the style of football has been evolving in a way which hurts their strengths. Roughly 10 years ago teams were needing a target man to be successful with a Drogba, Adebayor, Ibrahimovich, Milito, Berbatov, Dzeko type forward winning biggest titles at the biggest clubs.

There was the time when midfielders were crucial as prolific scorers, Gerrard, Lampard, Fabregas, Van der Vaart, Sneijder, Kaka.

Then teams recently have used pacy goalscoring wingers to be the best. Robben, Ribery for Bayern, Messi and Pedro for Barcelona, Ronaldo and Bale for Madrid, Sterling and Sane / Mahrez for Manchester City, now we have Salah and Mane.

Those are the 3 main attacking trends that have been useful at different stages for any team who's had success over the last 15 years. Before then Arsenal and Manchester United were the best by setting up with 442. 2 proper wide players who kept the width, 2 man midfield, one of which was a destroyer at winning the ball back and the other being the playmaker, a 2 man forward line built on strikers who complemented each other and had a strong relationship. Viera, Petit, Scholes, Keane.

Madrid at this time also used this, Ronaldo, Raul up top with proper wide players like Figo or Beckham while a Makelele or Cambiaso had to do the graft alongside a Zidane. Milan used 2 strikers with a Gattuso alongside a Pirlo.

Today you rarely see a top world class team use 2 strikers, 2 wide playing wingers or a 2 man midfield. You rarely see top teams rely on a target man or teams who have a midfielder reach 20 goals. Teams have tried and failed using the likes of Lukaku, Morata, Carroll etc in an outdated system while this season, even big dependent strikers like Haller, Joelinton, Benteke, Wesley for example aren't effective and goalscoring CMs are rarely seen.

I think only Van de Beek and Bruno Fernandes hit 20 goals across top leagues in Europe last year and i can't think of a Premier League midfielder this season who's gotten over or even near the 10 goal mark from play.

If you put the flair of the Brazil from the 70s against the Spain of 2010 how would they cope with Spain just passing and keeping the ball and patiently waiting to exploit their overly attacking line-up with less tactical balance than is needed in the modern game.

It's silly to compare, but I feel that the natural advantage will always be with the latest team as everything is expanding, players being able to be scouted from anywhere in the World. Teams not reliant on using local talent, clubs having staff for every detail and specialised coaches, diet plans, training regimes to perfect physique, tactics expanding as ideas evolve and use of internet to access video or footage instantly.

All these things do take much of the fun out of football and man for man talent of players is arguably not at good as it's been, but in terms of teams set up designed to win a 90 minute match, the modern teams will always be superior to previous eras teams in my eyes.

Written by Har_red92 January 21 2020 16:30:55

 

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