Tactical Report FIFA 2014

Central role suits Rodriguez

World Cup: A Colombian victory over Uruguay was never in doubt once James Rodriguez scored his second goal.

Both sides altered their starting formations on Saturday. While Uruguay chose to begin the way it finished against Italy with a 3-5-2 set-up, Colombia seemed to have moved to a 4-4-2 as the pre-match line-up suggested. In reality, it was anything but that, as James Rodriguez took a central role to aid striker Jackson Martinez and Teofilo Gutierrez.

Juan Cuadrado started on the right but after the opening quarter, he shifted to the other wing. This was mainly enabled by right-back Camilo Zuniga’s offensive thrust on the flank. While it certainly lent an asymmetry to Colombia’s formation since Zuniga effectively functioned as a wing-back — a role he has previously performed for Napoli — it didn’t imbalance the side.

Nevertheless, Uruguay mainly attacked Zuniga’s side but far too many moves broke down due to inaccurate passing. Colombia suffered from wayward distribution, too, as an inordinate number of long passes from the back was attempted.

However, a Colombian victory was never in doubt once Rodriguez scored his second goal. Although Uruguay increased the pressure by introducing forwards Christian Stuani and Abel Hernandez, the arrival of holding midfielder Alexander Mejia provided additional defensive cover for Colombia. Edinson Cavani linked the midfield and attack effectively once again but Luis Suarez’s absence meant Uruguay lacked a quality finisher.

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Printable version | Apr 3, 2020 7:29:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/fifa-2014/central-role-suits-rodriguez/article6160540.ece

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