Saturday, November 7, 2015

Celta Vigo 1-5 Valencia CF Match Report

Valencia CF reacted after the extremely poor showing against KAA Gent in the Champions league and managed to comfortably beat Celta Vigo by five goals to one on their home ground. Celta Vigo were in superb form coming to this match, they were the favorites to win and they've generally shows really great football so far in the season, but Valencia CF managed to overcome them and secure a big win over Celta who are a direct rival for the Champions league this season.

While the score is great and shows a level of dominance by Valencia CF, the reality of the match wasn't quite that. Truth be told Valencia CF only had 5 shots on goal and scored from all 5 of those. Basically one chance, one goal for Valencia CF today, but that won't always be the case and Valencia CF need to create more chances and have more ball possession. Celta Vigo had most of the ball possession, in fact about 60% of the possession, they had more overall shots, created about equal amount of chances I'd say, but they didn't manage to score from them.

I wouldn't say Valencia CF were just lucky and that is how they won, the defending was overall good, though with big room for improvement, the team pressured higher and more aggressively so that made Celta lost the ball more often than usual for them and we had Paco Alcacer and Daniel Parejo who just had amazing contributions. These two players won the match for Valencia CF, the others contributed and played okay, but it was Paco and Parejo who won this match for Valencia CF no doubt about it. Of course we need these type of wins and these type of players, Barcelona have Messi, Real Madrid have Ronaldo, Bayern have historically relied on Robben and Ribbery a lot, most quality teams have one or two players who do make the difference in a lot of the matches and Valencia CF needs more of it and I can only hope that Paco and Parejo have such great games every time, I wouldn't care if we rely too much on them as long as we are winning comfortably.

I won't go into detail about the goals and play as I normally do, you can watch highlights for that, I'll talk about some of the things that Valencia CF could improve. One of these things is mobility, a lot of the times players are just way too fixated to their positions and way too static, in many cases against many teams it feels like we are playing with 9 or 10 players against 11 players of theirs and this is because the players are not mobile and flexible enough. They also don't move as a team, they are not synchronized, so when one or two players are more forward, everyone else is still way back, instead of the whole team moving forward and being available to play and receive the ball.

Another issue is that we are not covering the defensive flanks fast enough, there is always space on the flanks for the opposition to exploit, there needs to be faster cover, especially since the team is generally sitting quite deep even when attacking, so it should be easier and simpler to get cover to the flanks and prevent the sort of easy penetrations we see very often.

Finally Nuno should stick more with one team and not make any changes, we should have a stable starting eleven that is rarely changed, we shouldn't be seeing Piatti start one game on the left, another one Bakkali, another one Mina, another one Moreno, etc... We shouldn't be seeing changed in the midfield either, keep the same trio game in and out and only make changed when tactically required or when injuries strike. We need more consistency in the starting eleven and then give chances to the rest in the upcoming cup games and games with weaker opponents when there is a Champions league match ahead.

Finally the team should work on improving build-up play and just team movement, the team needs to feel as a whole, as one unit, more cohesive defensive movement, midfield movement and attack movement,  the whole team should move and add numbers in a smaller area of field, this will give us more ball possession, more control and allow the players to pressure faster and recover the ball faster. From this match on the team should look to improve and become better, this should be a minimum performance, performance that wins us matches even without a great play, but there should be a better play overall, there should be more dominating performance.

Player Ratings:
Jaume 6.5 - Very good goalkeeping, stopped few shots at goal and was generally very secure.
Barragan 6.5 - Some good defending, found himself in good positions several times to clear danger.
Mustafi 6.5 - Mixed play, some good movement and marking, but wasn't always 100% secure. Scored the 5th goal for VCF though.
Vezo 6 - Similar to Mustafi, was generally positioned well and made few interceptions, but not feeling 100% confident in his skills.
Gaya 5.5 - At fault for the Celta goal, he played Vigo onside as all VCF players were setting up offside position. Was overall decent after that, though quite a few attacks came from his side.
Fuego 6 - Generally good play, was solid defensively and made one key tackle to stop Celta's attack.
Parejo 9 - Perfect game by Parejo, provided the assist for the first goal, scored the second from a free kick and basically secured the game with his third, before providing the assist for the 5th goal.
Gomes 6 - Had an okay game, made some decent forward runs and contributed a lot defensively, but it wasn't some accomplished performance, an okay one.
Cancelo 6 - Was okay in an attacking sense, managed to beat his marker few times, lost the ball quite a few times as well, wasn't particularly dangerous going forward.
Paco 8.5 - Paco was in full form today, scored the first goal, scored the third goal and provided the assist for Parejo's 4th goal. Was very active and combative throughout the match.
Bakkali 6 - Okay match, did well defensively and was very active throughout the pitch. Taken off early in the second half.
Santi Mina 5.5 - Didn't contribute much, today was mostly the Parejo and Paco show and those two pretty much won us the game.
Piatti 5 - Didn't see much of the ball, but was running channels when in attack and being a nuisance to Celta's defense.
Danilo N/A - Not enough time