I was pondering Marco Silva's persistence with zonal marking when defending set pieces last season. In spite of all the stats suggesting it wasn’t working, and in the face of mounting criticism, he fundamentally stuck to this tactic.
I remember being struck by the quantity of VAR penalties given at the 2018 World Cup. Many of these were a result of defenders getting too tight to their opponents, pushing, pulling and in some cases wrestling them to the ground. These were offences that referees were reluctant to punish without VAR but found it easier to give with the VAR replay (England had at least two penalties from this route from memory).
It's clear that VAR will result in lots more penalties next season in the Premier League. However, the type described above become less of a possibility with zonal marking as fundamentally defenders defend space rather than the attacking players. Is it possible that, in sticking with and ultimately successfully implementing a zonal marking system, that Marco Silva was preparing the ground for VAR being introduced this season? Could this perhaps now give Everton a small advantage over opponents who mark man-to-man?
Reader Comments (32)
Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer
1 Posted 03/07/2019 at 19:13:20
Defenders should never be grappling and wrestling attackers anyway, I've never understood it. Watch the ball and head it away; defending really can be that simple. If you complicate it by trying to tell yourself to control another variable (the attacker) that doesn't actually need to be controlled, then that's where things go wrong.
The advantage is so much with the defender anyway that you don't even have to win the header, you just have to compete competently enough to make it difficult for an attacker. Maybe defenders and coaches will be forced to become more intelligent and we'll see fewer goals from corners.
2 Posted 03/07/2019 at 20:45:16
The cheating that occurs at every single corner is a blight on the game that can be removed only with will, not with VAR. This is filtering down to kids football who watch these shameless cheating fuckers and seek to emulate them.
From the World Cup going to Qatar, to the diving, feigning of injury, brandishing of imaginary yellow cards our game is rotten to the core. Administered by thieves and played by cheats much of the time. It can be saved starting at home and making a stand. VAR papers over the cracks and we all sometimes collude in it by turning a blind eye when our own cheats do it.
I have read ToffeeWebers calling out these cheats. Time for the FA to start the cleanup. We will all be behind them.
3 Posted 03/07/2019 at 20:57:47
4 Posted 03/07/2019 at 21:03:41
5 Posted 03/07/2019 at 21:07:21
6 Posted 03/07/2019 at 21:31:18
I heard someone the other day saying that the ones looking at the VAR are not actually at the stadium, but based somewhere in the Midlands, surely this cant be true. So I would suggest to the authorities involved, once a VAR has been called show the crowd what your reviewing. I will be interested to see how fans will now react when a goal is scored will we wait for 30 seconds before celebrating just in case VAR are reviewing it.
7 Posted 03/07/2019 at 21:39:40
8 Posted 04/07/2019 at 10:44:06
Yes that was also my thought. Penalties will become much more prevalent with VAR, adding extra importance to having a decent penalty taker / penalty saving goalkeeper. I'm ok with Pickford less so with Siggy!
9 Posted 04/07/2019 at 10:51:14
Yes I think a lot of people would like to see Digne given the chance. Hes probably the cleanest striker of a ball in the squad. Although weve done well with penalty taking left backs!
10 Posted 04/07/2019 at 11:21:01
Taken from the BBC website...
(Note - the only 2 teams without a big screen are Liverpool and Man Utd at present)
Some decisions that go to the video assistant referee are to be shown on big screens at Premier League grounds.
Graphics will explain any VAR-related delay to a match, and any overturned decision, from next season.
Any video clip which helps explain an overturned decision will be broadcast, and they could potentially be viewed via an app on mobile phones.
Messages on scoreboards and PA announcements will be made at grounds which do not have giant screens.
VAR checks will be for "clear and obvious errors" relating to four match-changing situations: goals, mistaken identity, red cards and incidents in the penalty area.
It debuts in the Premier League next season, having been used at the 2018 World Cup, in this season's Champions League knockout stages and in selected FA Cup and Carabao Cup ties.
For clubs that do not have giant screens in their stadium, VAR communications will be made via a combination of PA announcements and messages on scoreboards.
"If the VAR believes there is a definitive video clip which helps explain an overturned decision to fans, it will be broadcast on giant screens," the Premier League said in a statement.
The Premier League says it is also looking at ways for supporters to view the clips on handheld devices via an app.
11 Posted 04/07/2019 at 12:08:36
12 Posted 04/07/2019 at 12:08:36
13 Posted 04/07/2019 at 23:23:45
Personally I loathe VAR, I feel that is going to lead to an abysmal atmosphere with hardly anybody feeling free to celebrate until they have been given permission and unfortunately was bought in to assauge the financial downside of poor decisions.
14 Posted 04/07/2019 at 23:34:24
15 Posted 05/07/2019 at 00:09:12
16 Posted 05/07/2019 at 00:55:39
Most games in the League are poor if truth be told. Teams work to hide their own true shortcomings by resorting to whatever they hope to get away with against any team they fear getting a hammering from, and those hammerers will stoop, despite their prodigious wealth, to exactly the same depths against the minnow teams.
Living in the North I compare the endeavour of rugby league teams, and cricket too, where nobody goes missing in action, or else. Most matches are full-blooded from the start right through to the end, with no cheating delaying anything. The players respect the ref's decision albeit VAR now proliferates in RL (and given the effort those players expend they probably need regular VAR breaks to prevent themselves suffering heart attacks).
Personally I'd initially like to limit to two the number of VAR appeals that any football team can make in a football match, the appeal to come from the manager. Whether or not the manager chooses to send his players out wearing electronic notification equipment, as refs these days wear, for them to immediately indicate to him a dodgy decision would be up to them. Just two appeals would really make players/managers think hard about squandering/cheating from bogus appeals.
17 Posted 05/07/2019 at 01:25:41
18 Posted 05/07/2019 at 02:01:03
As for Marco Silva instigating zonal marking and sticking with it, I tend to think it was more about what he believes is the better system than looking to possible changes in the way those dead ball situations are reffed. It all boils down to someone assessing the situation quickly and reacting quicker than the attackers and that is what he had to wait for the players to fully grasp.
19 Posted 05/07/2019 at 16:12:04
The team managers should have 2 reviews per game and keep each review they request unless its a wrong intervention ie what they are claiming happened actually did not. This prevents the VAR people stopping the ref and telling them to look at something as only the managers would be responsible. If a player really believes someone was offside or they should have had a penalty then the manager has a decision to make not someone sitting in a camper van in the Midlands. A wrong intervention could be penalised by giving the opposition a corner to stop bogus reviews. A review would only be granted once the ball had gone dead. As Sergie says SIMPLEs.
20 Posted 06/07/2019 at 10:02:56
I'd also agree that even though I was expecting zonal marking to get Silva the sack by half way through last season, it actually looks like its beginning to work and the lads are buying into it.
14 clean sheets !
21 Posted 06/07/2019 at 10:44:07
22 Posted 08/07/2019 at 14:14:21
Answers on a postcard.
23 Posted 08/07/2019 at 15:02:19
24 Posted 08/07/2019 at 15:08:27
25 Posted 09/07/2019 at 09:56:22
Seriously though - where are they going to put the booth thing that the ref walks over to check? I don't mean the room where the other refs sit (or whatever they're called), I mean the stand-up booth thing that the ref goes and looks at. So far I've seen it stood at the mouth of the tunnel in every game, but our tunnel is way too narrow so where will it go at Goodison?
26 Posted 09/07/2019 at 11:36:27
Sounds reasonable (apart from the committee) because it will save time and also protect the ref from our fans shoving their programmes up his arse when he's at the booth ruling out our legitimate goals.
Update: I've googled it, and it seems like booths will be available, but refs will be encouraged not to use them unless Carra and his mates give him advice which seems complete out of whack with reality. For example, if Carra says Mo Salah didn't dive, the ref would be advised to check for himself.
27 Posted 09/07/2019 at 11:54:23
28 Posted 09/07/2019 at 14:14:48
I mean, we know it will be Everton, we always seem to be the scapegoat when it comes to new rules being introduced.
29 Posted 09/07/2019 at 14:19:59
And I have it on good authority that you CAN swing a cat in our tunnel..
The cat, however, would suffer life-threatening injuries.
30 Posted 09/07/2019 at 16:28:33
Or maybe a bigger stadium.
31 Posted 10/07/2019 at 21:08:29
Maybe some rugby fan, who reads ToffeeWeb, could elaborate.
32 Posted 22/07/2019 at 21:23:11
It's used at every match in the Australian league and there have been calls to introduce it at every Superleague match due to the perceived unfairness of some teams having it more often than others. Presumably it's due to the fact that it uses the TV cameras and having a full TV outfit at every Superleague game would be cost prohibitive.
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.
Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.