Dundee Utd v Celtic review
Dundee Utd 0
We lined up with our 40th different starting 11 of the season;
- Kenny, Welsh, Ajer and Laxalt
- Christie, Turnbull and McGregor
- Edouard and Elyounoussi
Rogic, Forrest and Griffiths came on as subs
As predicted in my match preview (https://www.celtictrends.com/post/dundee-utd-v-celtic-preview) it was Elyounoussi in for Klimala as the only change.
The line up was a bit challenging to understand at first when many of us saw the team sheet we thought it would be a 4231. At times during the game it did look like we might have been 4231 in attack and 442D in defence. In the end thought my guess is that it was meant to be a 442D with Christie given more licence to get forward than McGregor and Elyounoussi encouraged to get wide on the left when appropriate.
I'm not against us utilising Elyounoussi a little bit more but the one thing we need against Dundee Utd (and many of the other SPFL teams) is at least one penalty box striker. Edouard is not a penalty box striker and in my opinion he needs one alongside him. My preference would be Ajeti but I would have been happy enough with Griffiths just as long as we played one. In my opinion Klimala is not one either.
I've done other articles on the game that can also be viewed here on CelticTrends.com;
Listening to Kennedy in his pre-match he talked about us working on quick passing and taking less touches on the ball. This season we have taken 1.34 touches per pass which is 2nd to Rangers with their 1.32 touches so I was intrigued to see how this would compare on Sunday.
Sunday's touches per pass was 1.4 with our best spell from 30 to 45 mins where it was 1.32.
In my match preview I mentioned how in Dundee Utd's game against Kilmarnock the majority of their play was down the right hand side. A strength indicated in the Player Impact graph. It was then interesting to see on Sunday that Kenny had the 2nd most touches (100) and 2nd most accurate passes (66) after McGregor. 100 touches being the most any fullback has since December. Out of the starting 11 Kenny had the best passing accuracy at 90% and he also had 2 key passes. Was this us capitalising Dundee Utd's weakness on the left or us being forced right because of their strength on our left?
Some key players stats were Elyounoussi had 7 shots at goal and Turnbull had 5 key passes and some team key stats were 12 shots on target (2nd best equal this season), Dundee Utd needed 30 clearances (3rd highest of our opponents this season), we had 44 touches in the box (3rd highest this season) and we had 27 shots at goal (highest this year).
The key failing for me was not playing (or introducing as a sub earlier enough) a penalty box striker. Dundee Utd concede NP xG and in their previous 16 games their opponents had a higher NP xG than them but they have the best goalkeeper in the league. This means you will get chances against them (suits a penalty box striker) but you need to finish well due to being up against Siegrist (needs a penalty box striker). Ajeti or Griffiths should have started.
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