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Blog - Tactics and Analysis

Corner kicks: The Prem's dying art

Tactics And Analysis

WhoScored: Van Gaal and Moyes compared

Tactics and Analysis

WhoScored: Struggles of Prem GKs

Tactics And Analysis

Five trends of the 2014-15 Premier League

Tactics & Analysis
 By Michael Cox

Swansea and Southampton: Model clubs of the Premier League

The ESPN FC crew debate whom they believe is the best defender in the English Premier League, and settle on Chelsea as the best defensive unit in the league with John Terry at the helm.

This weekend the Premier League is preparing for a showdown between the division's best two clubs, as Manchester City travel to Chelsea for Saturday's late kickoff. It's a meeting between the top two, and while not realistically a true title decider, it's probably the biggest game of the season.

It's difficult, however, for the majority of other clubs to learn lessons from the Premier League's two title contenders. While Chelsea and Manchester City have performed well over the past half-decade...

Are Divock Origi, Saido Berahino worth all the hype? The stats are intriguing

The ESPN FC crew discuss potential moves before the end of the transfer window, whether or not Mario Balotelli will leave Liverpool and Diego Costa's diving.

How do you build for the future in January?

The pressures of the midseason transfer window are largely focused on the here and now. Teams buy in the winter in order to strengthen for the next five months, whether it be for a title race, European push or relegation battle; they don't generally spend with the next five years in mind. But this season has seen several intriguing transfer stories in which the needs of the present and the future overlap.


- Infographic: How a transfer works
- Karlsen: Premier League club-by-club needs
- Carter: Top 10 transfer targets in England
- Window Shopping: Club-by-club guide
- Delaney: Top free agents next summer
- Delaney: What January holds in store

West Bromwich Albion and England U-21...

 By Michael Cox

David Trezeguet's ruthless finishing made him a memorable striker

David Trezeguet experienced several highs and lows with France as he won the 1998 World Cup and 2000 European Championship, but he also missed a crucial penalty in the 2006 World Cup.

Football is a game of fine margins, and few understand this better than French striker David Trezeguet, whose retirement from football was widely reported this week.

There's a tremendous symmetry about Trezeguet's high and low points of his career. Both came in major international finals, both came against the Italy national team -- the country where he spent his best years at Juventus during 2000-10 -- and both were utterly decisive.

One was a thumping drive into the top of the net, the other was...

Corner kicks a dying art in the Premier League

Charlie Austin is the Premier League Player of the Month after scoring an impressive five goals in five matches.

The sight of Phil Jones backing toward the Queens Park Rangers crowd, arms raised to signal the plan to his Manchester United teammates, was rightly met with utter bemusement. It wasn't even, as many would have presumed upon seeing him do so once, a matter of mere coincidence; he wasn't taking a corner kick just because he was the nearest man when the ball went out. Shortly after, he was taking another one.

As centre-backs go, Jones is certainly one of the more technical. Comfortable in possession...

 By Michael Cox

Christian Eriksen is the reliable No. 10 that Tottenham have lacked

ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE: Christian Eriksen (88') Tottenham 2-1 Sunderland

You can never entirely judge a player upon highlights alone, but a showreel of that individual's goals often summarises their footballing personality.

Watch Thierry Henry's 228 Arsenal goals and you'll find his cool, composed finishes epitomise his grace and nonchalance. View Cristiano Ronaldo's and you'll witness his sheer power. Observe Lionel Messi's collection and you'll marvel at his immaculate precision.

Tottenham's Christian Eriksen is a fine example, because the Danish playmaker scores...

 By Michael Cox

Aguero and Sanchez dominating the Premier League in very different ways

The ESPN FC crew discuss whom they'd rather have, Sergio Aguero or Alexis Sanchez, ahead of Sunday's Premier League clash between Man City and Arsenal.

During their first Premier League meeting in September, Sergio Aguero and Alexis Sanchez both scored in a 2-2 draw at the Emirates. Ahead of their second meeting on Sunday as Manchester City host Arsenal, few would bet against them repeating the trick; these two South Americans are arguably the Premier League's two most exciting attackers.

The fact they're both from South America is of interest, considering forwards from that continent have rarely been consistently successful in English football....