Ever seen the Russian’s play? Nope, me neither. Either? Whatever, let’s see what we can gather purely from the data.
Here’s the most used line up this year. The players are set in their average touch positions and the bigger their circle the more touches they have during a game:
The ridiculously high centre-back pairing are part of a side that keeps the opposition pinned back in their own half with a decent passing game. No other team in Russia are as territorially dominant as Krasnodar.
The full-backs get quite high up the pitch but don’t aimlessly whip crosses in. In many ways the stats make them look like an old school Russian side. Tidy and technical on the ball, fond of long range shots, fond of trying to work the ball into the box. Here’s Krasnodar’s key pass break down:
Brazilian Joaozinho is the creative spark. He’s stationed left but isn’t averse to roaming across the pitch. Uruguyuan Pereyra will be the man linking to the forwards from the middle. The Russian’s rotate the squad quite a lot, especially in the wide right position so it’s probably best that Martinez will concentrate on his own side as per.
That said, the Russians out-shot Lille in France in Game Week 1 and that was with the home side trailing for half an hour. It may be wise for Everton to go with something similar to the 4-3-3 we saw at the weekend to shore up the middle. If the Blues don’t field something like a full-strength line up, this away fixture could well end up being the most difficult game of the group stage.
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