Martinez reveals tactical inspirations: Wenger, Moyes could learn a thing or two

Roberto Martinez

Everton boss speaks passionately about his admiration for formations and strategy, something Arsenal and Manchester United managers have lacked.

Both Arsene Wenger and David Moyes have been guilty of tactical deficiencies at certain parts throughout the current Premier League season.

For the Arsenal manager, it is a case of one-dimensional strategy - setting his team up the same way for Sunderland as he would for Liverpool and consequently it should be no surprise that the Gunners have been found out when up against sides who prepare for their opposition accordingly; Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea and even Everton.

For the Manchester United boss, it is a question of formation and player understanding. All too often the shape of the United team has appeared confused, out of sorts and lacking the disciplined layout of, again, the set-ups utilised at City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Everton.

Toffees head coach Roberto Martinez recently spoke to FIFA about the upcoming World Cup in Brazil and, hearing him talk passionately about tactics makes one wonder whether Wenger and Moyes share the same enthusiasm for this aspect of the sport.

"The 1986 [World Cup] was the one I will always remember," began the Spaniard. "I would watch every game with my dad. We would go into detail and wonder, ‘How could you stop Maradona?’ It was the first time we started to look at the game and having discussions about how you could stop someone with his talent, but also how could you take advantage of a player like him."

Even when Martinez was entering puberty, he was pondering how a team could set themselves up to stifle the best player in the world at that time.

If it was Wenger, one cannot help but wonder whether instead of looking at stopping Maradona, he'd be more inclined to claim it should be Maradona worrying about how to stop Wengerball. Arsene would arguably approach the match the same way he approached Wigan Athletic last weekend, or Chelsea last month, or any Champions League game this season.

On the most recently global tournament, Martinez said: "I really enjoyed South Africa 2010. I had the opportunity to stay for the whole tournament. I’ve been to many games at other World Cups and I always wanted to stay the whole tournament and follow the preparation of some of the sides."

Again, Wenger has been singled out in the past for inefficient preparation periods. When Cesc Fabregas left for Barcelona he noted that, at Camp Nou, there was tactical training with chalkboards and lecture-style teaching as much as there was on training ground routines and drills.

"I tried to follow a team from each continent," continued Martinez. "I followed Paraguay for a few weeks when they were working in different areas. I saw the preparation of Netherlands as a European side and then I saw Ghana from Africa.

"It was fascinating to see how the players saw the opportunity to play in a World Cup in a very different manner and how they prepared for the games. Some squads were sharing rooms, some were in individual rooms and others were having up to three players in each room! It was a completely different environment in each hotel and I think it reflected in the way that they played."

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