In the focus of Tottenham's 6-1 victory over Manchester United, we still failed to see Bell.
Due to injury issues, Bell's physical fitness has not yet fully recovered. According to media reports, he may have to wait until the fifth round of the Premier League to make his debut after returning to Tottenham.
But for Bai Lily fans, the long wait will not make them lose patience, it will only make them look forward to the day when Bell re-worn the Tottenham jersey.
But from another perspective, Bell is now 31 years old and his physical condition is hard to compare with that of the past. At the same time, the frequent injuries over the years and the long cold sitting on the bench at Real Madrid have made his competitive state significantly decline from its peak.
From a tactical point of view, after years of polishing by Real Madrid, Bell is now quite different from the past in terms of personal technical characteristics and game style. Tottenham have also undergone corresponding tactical changes after Mourinho took over.
On the whole, although Bell is called returning to his old club this time, we can completely regard this transfer as a "new collision."
Mourinho has never been a coach who is particularly patient with players, but Bell is definitely an exception.
As a recognized world's top star, Bell came to Tottenham in a cheap way. According to media reports, Real Madrid will still bear most of Bell's salary, and has not asked Tottenham for any rental fees.
Being able to introduce such an experienced world-class striker in this way is undoubtedly a big plus for Tottenham, who had not outstanding offensive performance last season.
How can Bell help Tottenham? This article will provide a detailed analysis for the fans.
As mentioned above, Bell is 31 years old this year. For a player like him who relies heavily on speed, the increase in age will undoubtedly lead to a certain degree of decline in the competitive state.
Since the beginning of the 2010~2011 season, Bell has gradually become the main force in Tottenham. He averaged 71.5 minutes per game in the 2010~2011 Premier League, 90.4 minutes per game in the 2011~2012 Premier League, and averaged 71.5 minutes per game in the 2012~2013 Premier League. 85.4 minutes.
After coming to Real Madrid, due to his own injuries, the team's overall tactical needs and other factors, Bell's playing time began to be compressed.
Bell averaged only 60.3 minutes per game in La Liga during the 2013-2014 season. By the 2014~2015 season, Bell's average playing time in the league has rebounded to 75.2 minutes. After just one season, his average playing time dropped to 50.6 minutes, and in the 2016~2017 season, he even only had 41.5 minutes.
Time comes to the 2019~2020 season. Due to the deepening conflicts with the club, and Real Madrid has invested heavily in introducing a group of talented young players, Bell completely lost the main position in the White Corps. His average playing time is only 31.8 minutes. , A career low for Real Madrid.
The instability of playing time makes Bell's state difficult to maintain for a long time. He only represented the White Corps in all competitions and scored 3 goals and two assists last season. The number of appearances, goals, and assists all hit a record. A new low since the 2009~2010 season.
In the past two games, Mourinho's Tottenham has scored 13 goals. Such a goal efficiency has made the major media temporarily forget the "offensive weakness" that Bai Lily once criticized.
But from another perspective, Tottenham’s offense has really been reborn, reaching the point of “crushing” its competitors? The answer is naturally no.
Judging from the current staffing of Tottenham, their reserve in the forward line is relatively full. Harry Kane at the center position is one of the best shooters in the current Premier League and even in world football. At the wing position, Sun Xingmin, Lamela, Lucas Jr. also have distinctive offensive characteristics. Sun Xingmin is even more Has grown into the world's top winger in the past two seasons.
With such a group of talented forwards, why do Tottenham still lose points because of weak offense for a long time?
The reason is simple. Tottenham last season had a relatively luxurious forward line, but lacked a midfield line of the same standard.
In the Pochettino era, Tottenham had Eriksson in the midfield. The Danish active international has extremely dexterous underfoot technology and outstanding threat ball passing ability, able to connect Tottenham's midfield with outstanding strength.
After Mourinho came to the team, Eriksson chose to leave Inter Milan because he failed to renew his contract with the club. After losing this brain, Tottenham's midfielder inevitably fell into an embarrassing situation where his organizational ability was declining exponentially.
Fortunately, Mourinho is a head coach who advocates defensive counterattacks very much. His team does not need to rely too much on the midfield cross-pass organization in the offensive process. In addition, the withdrawal of Sun Xingmin and Lucas should be more and more. Frequently, this allowed Tottenham's record last season not only to not collapse, but to achieve a big leap in the late league.
But in any case, the midfielder is the hub of a team's offensive and defensive transformation.
How to alleviate the problem of insufficient offensive strength in the midfield? Mourinho gave his answer-the striker retreated.
The picture above is a heat map of Harry Kane in the 2019~2020 season. Although he missed a lot of games due to injuries, Mourinho still makes full use of Kane’s overall view of the field and good skills at his feet. The England international has a lot of room for action.
Similar to Kane, Tottenham’s left winger Sun Xingmin and right winger Lucas Jr. have very distinct characteristics of retracement.
It is worth mentioning that compared to Kane's mediocre organizational performance last season, Sun Xingmin and Lucas Jr.'s retreat have helped the team's offense more clearly.
As shown in the picture above, Sun Xingmin completed 10 assists in the Premier League last season. Not only is Tottenham’s assists leader in the team, but he can also rank first among all players in the same position. At the same time, Sun Xingmin has been in a season. Created up to 12 excellent scoring opportunities, ranked first in the Tottenham team and all players in the same position.
When the time comes to this season, Sun Xingmin's organizational performance has even improved compared to the previous season.
The South Korean international has created 3 excellent scoring opportunities in the 4 Premier League games he has played, ranking first among all players in the same position. In addition, Sun Xingmin averaged an amazing number of key passes per game. 3.3 times, you can also rank first among all players in the same position.
If Sun Xingmin's data is not surprising, then Kane's retracement organization ability demonstrated this season is impressive.
From the organizational data, Kane only averaged key passes per game in the 2019~2020 season and squeezed into the top 10 in the same position. According to such data, Kane doesn't seem to have much to do with "retracement."
Surprisingly, the England center, who was mediocre on the organizational side last season, has risen strongly this season. As of the end of 4 Premier League games, Kane's assists, the number of excellent scoring opportunities, and the number of key passes per game can all rank first among all players in the same position.
Combining the above, I believe everyone has a more thorough understanding of Mourinho's tactical needs.
In the tactical philosophy of the Portuguese coach, the forward not only needs to take the responsibility for scoring, but also needs to use a large retracement to assist the midfielder in organizing and channeling (this is also very similar to Mourinho’s emphasis on recycling defense. Big relationship).
Combining Tottenham’s current offensive tactics, the striker’s ability to retreat and organize will be a very important link. As the biggest surprise that Tottenham’s summer window has brought to fans this season, can Bell take on a certain degree of retracement organization tasks?
Let’s take Bell’s performance in the 2017~2018 season as an example. The Welsh superstar scored 20 goals for Real Madrid in 37 games that season and had 6 assists, dedicating a phenomenal performance.
The above picture is a heat map of Bell in the season. It can be found that the Welsh star still prefers to be active on the right side and the center of the penalty area, and will not retreat to the midfield for a long time to organize the ball.
From the data point of view, Bell's organizational performance in the season can only be described as quite satisfactory. He only completed two assists in La Liga throughout the season, ranking 15th among all players in the same position. At the same time, in addition to the pass success rate can be ranked 5th among all players in the same position, Bell's organizational data is difficult to squeeze into the top 5.
On the whole, Gareth Bale can be understood as a fast winger with a sharp breakthrough, or as an "adduction" winger with superb shooting skills, but understood as a good at returning. The withdrawal of players is not very accurate.
As one of the most prominent wing players in world football in the past decade, Bell naturally has the necessary breakthrough ability as a winger.
It is worth mentioning that the Welsh star's breakthrough is neither Neymar's fancy nor the Messi's ghostly dexterity. Bell's breakthrough can only be described in simple and direct four words.
Relying on the inherent speed advantage, Bell does not need too complicated foot skills, sometimes just a simple lying ball can easily throw off the defensive player.
I believe many fans still vaguely remember the game that Bell played against Inter Milan in the Champions League on behalf of Tottenham many years ago. Facing Maicon, who has the reputation of being the world's number one right back, Bell used to accelerate overtaking time and time again to prove to the world the violent aesthetics of speed.
As a wide player, Bell has almost no major technical weaknesses. His strong physical quality makes him not afraid of any Premier League defender. With the world's top instant acceleration ability, Bell's individual assault ability on the wing can be among the world's top ranks for a long time.
At the same time, Bell also has an excellent passing ability. The extremely outstanding instantaneous acceleration ability often allows him to open the pass gap in a short time and find the frontcourt contact point with a relatively relaxed attitude.
Of course, if you look closely at Bell's career personal data, you can find that assists are by no means the Welsh star's specialty.
Compared to traditional wingers, scoring is the main theme of Bell.
You know, Real Madrid was sitting on the Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo at that time, who almost occupied all the shots of the White Coats in the frontcourt. It is not easy for Bale to score so many goals in such a background environment.
Why is Bell able to score so many goals?
This data is inseparable from the Welsh star's balanced feet ability and diversified court positions.
According to the data on the German transfer market, Bell has played a total of 7 positions in his career, namely right winger, right midfielder, left midfielder, left midfielder, left backfielder, center forward and shadow forward (free man in front).
As a world-class shooter, Bell has shown excellent scoring efficiency in every position. He scored 72 goals in the right wing position, 1 goal in the right forward position, and 22 goals in the left wing position. , The left forward position scored 44 goals, the left back position scored two goals, the center position scored 12 goals, and the shadow forward position scored 8 goals.
As Real Madrid's overall strength is more outstanding, Bell has gained a lot of opportunities to face dense defense in the White Coats. His excellent peripheral long shots and free kick footwork have more room to play. For Tottenham, the personal technical characteristics of Bell's long-range shooting can also bring effective help to the team's offense.
Looking at Mourinho's career, coaching Tottenham this time is definitely a brand new challenge.
Recalling the tragic years of coaching Chelsea, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and other giants, Mourinho has a relatively rich staffing. After coming to Tottenham, he was limited by a more general lineup on paper, and Mourinho also had a small life of "calculating".
With the addition of a world-class star like Bell, Mourinho and his Tottenham will surely get sufficient immediate strength to supplement. But from another perspective, fans may look forward to the Welsh superstar's tactical positioning and position on the field.
Bell made his debut in the famous Southampton youth training camp in English football. His position has been established as a left back since he was a child. A series of technical moves and tactical awareness training are biased towards defensive players.
Even at the left-back position, Bell's brilliant offensive talent cannot be concealed.
On October 21, 2010, Bell's top offensive strength was fully demonstrated in the intercontinental arena.
In the Champions League group game against Inter Milan, Bell, who was also a left-back at the time, repeatedly broke through Maicon with unsolvable speed. In the 52nd, 89th and 90th minutes of the game, Bell helped Tottenham score three goals and almost led the team to draw with Inter.
In the second round of the two sides, Maicon still became Bell's background board. In that game, the Welshman contributed 2 assists, 3 threatening passes and 8 crosses; in addition, Bell also had 1 counter and 1 clearance.
After the game, the British "Sky Sports" and Italy's "All Sports" both scored a perfect score of 10 points for Bell. The "World Sports" did not hesitate to praise Bell: "It's a great way to play the ball like Bell. We have not seen such a scene for many years. Bell has the height and size of the 800-meter star Steve Ovett, and he also has the acceleration of football small winger Brian Habana. Ability and impact. And when he got close to the baseline, his curve pass seemed to come from a Brazilian player."
赛后，英国的“天空体育”和意大利的“所有体育”都为贝尔赢得了10分的完美得分。 “世界体育”毫不犹豫地称赞贝尔：“这是像贝尔一样打球的好方法。多年来我们从未见过这样的场面。贝尔拥有800米高的球星史蒂夫·奥维特的身高和体型，而且他还有足球小边锋Brian Habana的加速能力和冲击力。当他接近底线时，他的弯道传球似乎来自巴西球员。”
It was during the 2010~2011 season that Tottenham’s then head coach Redknapp paid more and more attention to Bell’s offensive ability. In certain games, he even placed Bell on the left wing (in fact, Bell’s defense at the left back) Performance can only be described in general, which is also an important reason for Lao Lei's determination to presuppose him).
After arriving at the left forward position, Bell, who does not need to be distracted by defense, showed a stronger offensive strength.
Some fans may have noticed: Bell is now recognized as a right winger. When did he complete this position change?
On June 14, 2012, the Tottenham club officially announced that Lao Lei was dismissed, and then Boas took his place.
After Boas took over, he did not place Bale in the left back or left forward position he was accustomed to, but unexpectedly arranged him to become the "shadow forward" behind the center forward. The quotation marks are used because Bell's position cannot be simply understood as a shadow forward. His position on the field is more like an unconventional No. 10 player.
How to understand Bell's tactical position in the Boas era? His position seems far away from the goal, but in fact he has gained a higher tactical status.
For example, after passing through the midfield, the ball is usually directly handed over to Bell's feet. The Welsh star can either choose to distribute the ball to the wing for further tactical coordination; or he can choose to dribble directly and then play himself Advantages in shooting.
In the 2012-2013 season, Bell set his own single-season scoring record: He represented Tottenham in 44 appearances in all competitions and scored 26 goals that season.
In addition to activities behind the center, Bell also developed the potential as a right forward in the 12-13 season. After joining Real Madrid, Bale's position was completely determined to be the right winger because the team was like Cristiano Ronaldo in the left wing position.
He once said in an interview: "In the 12-13 season, I didn't play too many left wingers at Tottenham, and I spent more time behind the center or right wing... I was comfortable playing on the right. , I’m very happy to be on the right wing."
On the whole, Bell's rich career allows him to adapt to multiple positions such as left wing, left back, right wing, center, and shadow forward. But for Mourinho, he definitely hopes to give full play to Bell's offensive strength, so the probability of placing Bell in the full-back position is relatively low.
In this way, Bell is likely to continue to appear in the forward line.
In the current 433 formation used by Mourinho, the usual candidate for the center position is Harry Kane, the usual candidate for the left wing position is Sun Xingmin, and the usual candidate for the right wing position is Lucas Jr. One of them is the current Premier League striker (Sun Xingmin), and the other is the current Premier League assist king (Kane).
It is foreseeable that Mourinho will not put these two players on the bench. In this way, it seems natural for Bell to return to his familiar right wing position + replace Lucas, who has relatively average statistics.
From the point of view of technical characteristics, Lucas is extremely fast, has a good assault ability, and can contribute an average of 1.6 shots per game. Of course, for Mourinho or Pochettino, Lucas Jr. is not the one who secures the victory for the team by scoring. They value the Brazilian player's professional attitude and the overall tactics. Sacrifice.
The picture above is a heat map of Lucas's last season. It can be found that as a more offensive wide player, Lucas retreats to his own half very frequently. His performance on the defensive end is even as good as that of some full-backs: 1.6 steals per game, 0.4 interceptions per game, 0.7 clearances per game...
Diligent running, active interspersed, this is the most critical factor for the little Lucas to gain the trust of Mourinho. From this point of view, Bell is indeed inferior to Lucas Jr., but the Welshman's personal skill and high offensive efficiency can further enrich Bai Lily's offensive options in the frontcourt.
One more thing, let's not forget that Bell is also a winger with rich defensive experience. Even if Mourinho will not directly arrange him in the position of full-back, but the Portuguese madman who regards defense as the foundation of his life will inevitably give Bell a certain defensive task.
We might as well guess boldly, if Mourinho bravely changes the formation and finds a tactical strategy that not only retains the Sun Xingmin + Kane combination, but also releases Bell's offensive potential, will Tottenham’s offensive strength be even higher.
As shown in the picture above, when Sun Xingmin and Kane form a double striker, and Bale’s position adducts behind the striker, playing his very good "shadow striker", Tottenham’s formation will change from 433 to offensive strength The same powerful 4312 formation.
From a certain point of view, the distance between Sun Xingmin and Kane in this formation is reduced, which is conducive to the development of a finer small-scale cooperation. At the same time, Bell returns to the center, and its impact on the goal and pressure on the defense can be further exerted.
More importantly, Bell can constantly change positions with Sun Xingmin and Kane in the game.
When Bale and Kane switched positions, Tottenham's midfielder's position was more suitable for counterattack. As shown in the figure, once the rear teammate breaks the ball, Kane, who retreats to the midfield, can give full play to his more prominent organizational footwork and use the "double fast" composed of Sun Xingmin and Bell to form an impact on the goal.
When Bell and Sun Xing change positions, Tottenham can form a traditional "high-speed match" in the frontcourt-Kane is responsible for holding the ball and Bell is responsible for interspersed assault. And Sun Xingmin's efficient control of two points can give full play to his advantages.
Of course, Bell's help for Tottenham after coming to the center is more than just the above.
As he is closer to the goal, his dribbling acceleration is bound to put more pressure on the defensive players. Whether it is a successful breakthrough or a foul, it can enrich the team's offensive level.
In addition, Bell's long-range shot will also be a "big killer" when Tottenham's offense is at a deadlock.
During his first time at Tottenham, Bell's technical style was more inclined to single-handed advances or grab shots. After leaving Madrid, the star-studded White Corps could not give Bell a tactical status similar to that of Tottenham, and most of the shooting rights were transferred to Ronaldo.
In order to find his own tactical positioning, Bell began to deliberately temper his overall view of the field and the ability to pass the threat ball. Looking at Real Madrid's many games, Bell can not only show the strength of the goal, but also his scrutiny of the game situation and the extremely imaginative ability to pass the threat ball can not be underestimated.
Lian Po is old, can he still eat? Bell is now 31 years old, and the decline in his state, frequent injuries, and conflicts with senior management... various factors make the Welsh superstar and Real Madrid have to draw a question mark in the future.
But for Bell, the end is not a new beginning.
Familiar team logo, brand new team, now Tottenham seems to be able to provide him with a more suitable platform. Whether it can shine in the second spring of Bai Lily, it depends not only on Mourinho's training, but also on his own efforts.