Principles of Game
The concept of a game model should not be confused with other related concepts such as tactical organisation and systems of play.
The Game Model will be broken down into 4 moments of play, which are themselves broken down into principles, sub-principles, and sub-sub-principles.
Tactical concepts As defence and attack are intimately linked, it is a mistake to pursue a defensive and offensive organisation without an articulation of meaning. In this sense, it is important to discuss the importance of transition moments and, as such, the balance of the team in the game, based on this "articulation of meaning" between the different dimensions of the desired game, as well as how it is expressed and how the different moments that give shape to the moments of play are articulated.
As I have said, transitions can be considered as the moments that precede and give shape to the loss and recovery of the ball (attack-defence and defence-attack transitions, respectively), and that although they are very quick moments, they are fundamental for the maintenance of the balance and fluidity of a team's play. According to Victor Frade, it seems to be more adjusted the concept or notion of defence, recovery, management and set up, i.e. We must defend in order to get the ball back. Once we have recovered the ball, we must know how to manage this possession in order to create the conditions to set, to score a goal. (Julian Tobar 2021)
"I can't separate things! I can't separate them, I do it. The game is prepared in a balanced way and the training is also done with this in mind. I can't say if the most important thing is to defend well or to attack well, because I can't separate these two moments. I think the team is a whole and the way it works is also a whole. I think that when you have the ball you also must think about the game defensively, just as when you don't have the ball and you are in a defensive situation you also must think about the game offensively and prepare for when you get the ball back. So, I think all this is too interconnected for me to make that separation. "(Mourinho, quoted by Amieiro, 2007,)
It is important to emphasise that the choice of game principles to be followed must be well balanced and be aware that for an effective game model to be achieved; a key role will be the coherence that can be established between the different principles in the four moments. When a team is in possession of the ball, they are always faced with three possibilities: that possession will result in a goal, a run out or a loss of possession (it is not known when, how and where this loss may occur).
Therefore, losing possession to the opponent is a real possibility which, in my opinion, should be considered and felt in advance. That is to say, each team that has possession of the ball must be prepared for the moment of losing it, to react in an efficient way, being able to recover it immediately, or in the worst case, to be able to organise itself defensively avoiding the opponent's goal situations. For these reasons, it is difficult to separate and train these moments (which are nevertheless standardised) separately, without linking them to the others, and therefore to the whole. The possibility of losing the ball can be considered before it is lost! How can we do this?
By mental contemplation, i.e., by understanding the game. By the ability to anticipate and somatise this possibility. "Basically, the game is about balance. No one can attack well if the team is not balanced in defence (if it has no defensive balance in attack) and no one can attack well if, in defence, the team is not prepared to attack (if it has no offensive balance in defence). These balances are very important. Having a balanced team at all times is the best way to win." (Carvalhal, quoted by Arnieiro, 2007)
Mastering these four moments of the game is fundamental for a team. To work on them as well as possible,
Tactical Periodisation uses its own working principles, which we will see in the next chapter.
The game model and its principles are not intangible. Thus, two situations may arise:
- You arrive at the club and so your players do not know you. Automatically you will work on the model of
play and the principles which are yours and which your players will have to assimilate, and which may be
different from those of their previous coach.
- You have been in charge for several seasons. With good results (if the results were not good you would
have already changed your game model)