Real Sociedad 0-0 Roma – Tactical Analysis

Roma survived Real Sociedad with a great defensive match. 5-3-2 with Belotti and Dybala in the first line of pressure and playing without a defensive midfielder due to Matic’s injury.

Although Roma tried to press high in the first few minutes, they ended up playing in a low block, as Real Sociedad by placing 2 very high midfielders found spaces for the third midfielder to be freed up. That player, usually was David Silva, who played a great game. When Real Sociedad were in the final third, Roma compacted the lines, prevented them from progressing inside and gave space on the wings.

The problem for Real Sociedad was that despite making good combinations and reaching that area with ease, in the final third they lost almost all the duels and ha few players in the box. Both in crosses from the flank and passes to the back of the defense, Imanol Alguacil’s team didn’t find a finisher in almost any play. Smalling, Ibañez and Mancini played a great game in defense, making few mistakes being very aggressive.

Real Sociedad only found 2 good situations inside with Brais Mendez running from the edge of the box and a header by Sorloth at the beginning of the second half, in one of the few defensive mistakes of Mourinho’s team.

Unable to finish inside the box, Real tried to shoot from distance but the center backs were very quick to come out and block the shots.

Real Sociedad’s best chances came from set pieces with a header by Zubeldia and a double chance by Oyarzabal in which Rui Patricio made a great save to complete a perfect game.

It should be noted that Real Sociedad had a lot of possession and were able to play in the opponent’s half due to a great pressure after losing the ball, with Roma not having attacking transitions in the entire match.

Roma’s only chances came from set pieces with a shot from outside the box by Dybala that was deflected and almost went into the goal. And a corner that ended in a goal disallowed to Smalling for handball.

Mourinho achieved his goal by keeping a clean sheet to qualify Roma to the quarterfinals of the Europa League.

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