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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Zonal Marking For Liverpool In Return Leg?

LIVERPOOL manager Rafael Benitez is sticking to zonal marking system for their Champions League Quarter Finals return leg against Chelsea.

In the first leg against Liverpool, Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea scored 2 thumping headers. Fans fueled by anger questioned the wisdom of using zonal marking in Liverpool's defensive play at set-pieces.

Benitez said: "We feel we can handle Chelsea in the air. There was a lot of talk last week about our zonal marking system but all the top clubs have conceded about the same from set-pieces this season, it is not just the system that matters.

We are happy with the way we defend, it is all about the quality of players in the end.

"Zonal marking has been good for us in the past, and it will be good for the future."

Why is Rafael Benitez insistent on using zonal marking system? Is he sticking to it because he is too proud to admit his tactical mistake, Or is it the better choice?

Zonal marking is a defensive strategy used in soccer where defenders cover an area of the pitch rather than marking a specific player. The defender only marks an opponent if they move into their zone. It means unless the defender is telepathic, he will always be one touch behind the opponent.

I personally feel man to man marking will be a better choice for this match. Chelsea have shown that they perfectly capable of countering Liverpool's zonal marking system.