I wanted to highlight the two defensive sets from Revolution on the 9th point. Their match up D – almost a version of a clam D – really disrupts Riot’s O.
Ome moment to highlight from the first clip show how Revolution hands off Cassie Swafford to the deep defender (Elizabeth Mosquera who is off screen) and picks up Sarah Griffith:
Here you see Swafford heading deep:
Here you’ll see the same defender (sorry, I can’t see the number) picking up Surge who is coming under:
The other thing to note in this clip is that the defender guarding Alex Ode from Riot (the defender in the white hat) doesn’t seem to be looking to switch. Since Ode seems to start up front with the handlers, it looks to me that Revolution’s D set here is to match up with the handlers one on one and play a little zone D with deep help with the other 4 defenders.
An interesting change here is that all of the Revolution players (aside from the mark) seem to be looking to help / poach / play zone. Notice here how the defender in the middle of the field (in the white hat) moves to pick up Nora Landri who is coming in from the back. That movement is easy to miss because of Ximena Montaña’s amazing poach block!
Here’s the initial set with the defender in the white hat in the middle of the field looking to pick up players coming in from the deep space:
Here’s a pic showing her moving to pick up Landri:
Here’s the full clip of the D on Riot’s second possession:
I think there’s a lot to learn from watching Revolution’s D here. The trouble the D gives Riot feels like a good indication of the trouble this D would give any team playing a vert stack. It is too bad we don’t have a great view of the full field to see how Elizabeth Mosquera is positioned, but even with only part of the information on the D I think there’s something worth trying here.