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Mick

Life President
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
10,231
Zonal marking backfires so often I really can't see why anyone entertains the idea.

With zonal marking, rather than stick to a player, you guard a certain zone.

The six-yard box, when defending a corner, comprises of three or four zones in which defenders will position themselves. If the ball enters your zone, get rid of it. If it doesn't, don't worry about it.

However, if you're guarding a zone, you're standing still. The attacker may have the advantage of a five- or 10-yard run on you, so he's in the air first, which means he gets to the ball first (does that sound familiar ?).

How are you supposed to beat your opponent in the air in that situation?

Furthermore, problems arise when the ball drops between the zones. Players hesitate and remain unsure whose responsibility it is, and that's when the opposition pounce with worrying regularity.

It isn't working !
 

mrsblue

Banned
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
9,419
Zonal marking backfires so often I really can't see why anyone entertains the idea.

With zonal marking, rather than stick to a player, you guard a certain zone.

The six-yard box, when defending a corner, comprises of three or four zones in which defenders will position themselves. If the ball enters your zone, get rid of it. If it doesn't, don't worry about it.

However, if you're guarding a zone, you're standing still. The attacker may have the advantage of a five- or 10-yard run on you, so he's in the air first, which means he gets to the ball first (does that sound familiar ?).

How are you supposed to beat your opponent in the air in that situation?

Furthermore, problems arise when the ball drops between the zones. Players hesitate and remain unsure whose responsibility it is, and that's when the opposition pounce with worrying regularity.

It isn't working !


I have endured this tactic and it was a farce,Touch tight and remain square to the opponent is the only way to defend set piece situations.
 

Pubey

Guest
I have endured this tactic and it was a farce,Touch tight and remain square to the opponent is the only way to defend set piece situations.

What about when other attackers purposefully block your defensive run and allow your man to get free? There are pros and cons of both approaches, and sometimes they work and sometimes they fail.
 

Beefy

Life President
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
18,901
Location
Old Leigh
Liverpool changed to zonal marking under Rafa Benitez. The media mocked Benitez as Match of the Day every week showed goal after goal being conceeded by them at set-pieces.

They then went almost a season without conceeding from a set piece and came very close to winning the Premier League title. For some reason the same 'experts' who mocked them previously never mentioned zonal marking at this time....

There's a reason why some managers and some clubs push this tactic and it is because when you get it right it works. The problem is the painful learning period - which you assume has to be much longer when you're dealing with more limited players.
 

dannypav

President
Joined
Dec 14, 2011
Messages
5,755
Zonal marking backfires so often I really can't see why anyone entertains the idea.

With zonal marking, rather than stick to a player, you guard a certain zone.

The six-yard box, when defending a corner, comprises of three or four zones in which defenders will position themselves. If the ball enters your zone, get rid of it. If it doesn't, don't worry about it.

However, if you're guarding a zone, you're standing still. The attacker may have the advantage of a five- or 10-yard run on you, so he's in the air first, which means he gets to the ball first (does that sound familiar ?).

How are you supposed to beat your opponent in the air in that situation?

Furthermore, problems arise when the ball drops between the zones. Players hesitate and remain unsure whose responsibility it is, and that's when the opposition pounce with worrying regularity.

It isn't working !

I agree with every single word you have written.
But why , and this is purely rhetorical , do some of the top teams in England / Europe ( Arsenal spring to mind ) adopt this zonal marking approach ????
I see very little positives in it , but if these guys are doing it , it must have some merits surely ?
I'm confused.
 

dannyboy25

First XI
Joined
Apr 20, 2011
Messages
258
I'm glad somebody brought this up as its clear that the zonal marking tactics simply arent working . For us to concede so many goals from set pieces surley must set off alarm bells, but yet we seem to be sticking with the idea.

It's got to the stage where any corner or set piece against us is more or less like giving the opposition a penalty.
Why doesn't brown go back to basics and mark man for man.

I know stats would state we have the 3rd best defence in the league (prior to last night ) but over 70% of the goals we've conceded have come from crosses something needs to be changed and quick.

Can imagine cresswell and co having a field day against us next friday night !!
 

mrsblue

Banned
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
9,419
What about when other attackers purposefully block your defensive run and allow your man to get free? There are pros and cons of both approaches, and sometimes they work and sometimes they fail.


Very true but the delivery of the ball has to be sublime for the unmarked attacker to benefit ,The average dead ball delivery even at the highest level is appalling,Marking a zone goes against everything a player has been taught .
 

Ricky Otto

President⭐
Joined
Mar 8, 2007
Messages
6,691
Location
Chelmsford
it takes everyone being fully confident in each others ability and knowing each others game. In my experience man to man is always better, the arguement that you get pulled out of position by a fluid team doesn't really wash with me, if you comunicate and pass on men then you won't lose your shape.
 

Silencer

Director
Joined
Jan 12, 2009
Messages
2,349
Location
Southchurch Village
I agree with every single word you have written.
But why , and this is purely rhetorical , do some of the top teams in England / Europe ( Arsenal spring to mind ) adopt this zonal marking approach ????
I see very little positives in it , but if these guys are doing it , it must have some merits surely ?
I'm confused.

Very good point.

With the greatest respect to our squad but I very much doubt whether players at this level are familiar with zonal marking where as the top European players will be experienced and brought up on it.

For Phil Brown to expect a group of league two players to pick this up and excel is beyond me.....it was clear in pre season that we couldn't adapt to zonal marking, yet weeks into the season we still persevere with it and have seen it cost us time and time again!!! Maybe time for the EGO to swallow some pride and make the change to what these players have always known.
 

mrsblue

Banned
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
9,419
Very good point.

With the greatest respect to our squad but I very much doubt whether players at this level are familiar with zonal marking where as the top European players will be experienced and brought up on it.

For Phil Brown to expect a group of league two players to pick this up and excel is beyond me.....it was clear in pre season that we couldn't adapt to zonal marking, yet weeks into the season we still persevere with it and have seen it cost us time and time again!!! Maybe time for the EGO to swallow some pride and make the change to what these players have always known.


Agreed,
Instead of our lads impersonating statues whilst marking thin air Phil should rethink and bin this idea ASAP.
 

Mick

Life President
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
10,231
Liverpool changed to zonal marking under Rafa Benitez. The media mocked Benitez as Match of the Day every week showed goal after goal being conceeded by them at set-pieces.

There's a reason why some managers and some clubs push this tactic and it is because when you get it right it works. The problem is the painful learning period - which you assume has to be much longer when you're dealing with more limited players.

I think Houllier actually introduced it at Liverpool and yes, with top quality players it can work. In our case, I fear the "learning period" could be infinite.
 

mrsblue

Banned
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
9,419
I think Houllier actually introduced it at Liverpool and yes, with top quality players it can work. In our case, I fear the "learning period" could be infinite.


The very best players have superior speed of thought so they can adapt,At our level they cannot so I agree with your theory,Shame Phil continues with madcap ideas.
 

shrimpstew

Schoolboy
Joined
Jan 30, 2009
Messages
91
Location
leigh-on-sea
Zonal marking rarely works at a higher level, so why PB is persevering with this tactic at league2 level is beyond me. How many more goals do we concede before he changes back to proper defending.
 

Jam_Man

Life President
Joined
Apr 7, 2005
Messages
25,545
Location
Southend
If Arsenal use it then it cant have dont too badly as they had 2nd best defence in country last year. Do remember them being vulnerable to set pieces at times but then they arent the most physical team.

Im sure it works for some I personally think any system that is difficult to master should be avoided. Keeping things simple at this level makes more sense to me.
 

Mick

Life President
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
10,231
Interesting (or not) to compare two threads. One is about bad behaviour leading to someone being thrown out of the ground and attracts nearly 5,000 viewings and a hundred plus responses. The other is about bad defending leading to us being thrown out of the JPT, attracting a slight fraction of that. This confirms my suspicion that a lot of people are less interested in the football than the periphery.
 

Tangled up in Blue

Certified Senior Citizen⭐
Joined
May 24, 2004
Messages
31,779
Location
Sant Cugat del Vallès
Interesting (or not) to compare two threads. One is about bad behaviour leading to someone being thrown out of the ground and attracts nearly 5,000 viewings and a hundred plus responses. The other is about bad defending leading to us being thrown out of the JPT, attracting a slight fraction of that. This confirms my suspicion that a lot of people are less interested in the football than the periphery.

As fans, aren't we all on the periphery of the game? :winking:
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2003
Messages
1,802
Got to admit I'm really not a fan of the zonal system. Maybe it will work for some while it won't for others but as has been mentioned above, maybe League two defenders aren't the right people to be trying it with.

As someone said a few weeks back on here, "its not unmarked zones that score goals, its unmarked players".
 

Mick

Life President
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
10,231
Do you have any figures to back this up?

Unlikely. Evidence of the shortcomings is largely empirical.

Anyway whether it works at the highest level for a small number of clubs is not relevant. It is patently not working at our level and should be ditched forthwith.
 

dloman

Manager
Joined
Aug 18, 2005
Messages
1,373
Are you actually sure we do play a zonal marking system? I only say this because on tuesday night at a corner Straker (who by the way i thought had a decent game) was screaming at A.N Other to mark a Dagenham player. Maybe we do play man to man but are just quite poor at it.
 
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