By Oliver Trust BERLIN Germany (Xinhua)
-- France is the trendsetting team of
the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, said former Swiss national
coach Ottmar Hitzfeld, who tipped the 1998 world champions to
win the World Cup final against Croatia in Moscow on Sunday.
former Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich coach said the French
style will influence future football and times of unlimited
ball-possession as a successful system will be a story of the
For France, it’s not
its first intention to dominate the game over 90 minutes but to
play with a reliable and robust defense for fast counter attacks
through an intense vertical game. The idea behind is to avoid
counter attacks, said Hitzfeld.
Hitzfeld, the World Cup in Russia has proved that
ball-possession football played by Spain and Germany is no
longer the leading tactical system in football, saying “it was
no great fun to watch Germany and Spain play football.”
nations will have to change their methods and implement more
options, as opponents and smaller nations have adapted their
game, and the percentage of ball possession is not inevitably
leading to success, said the 1997 and 2001 Champions League
France won the
last-16 match against Argentina with only 40 percent of ball
possession but scored four goals when beating the South American
side by 4-3.
In order to succeed,
teams must increase goal-orientated actions, and future football
cries for more individuals who are able to break through robust
defense chains with dribbling skills, said Hitzfeld.
Belgian Eden Hazard (Chelsea) and French Kylian Mbappe (Paris St
Germain) the ideal type of attackers, but lamented that Germany
lacked such a player.
“France does not
leave much space to their opponent, but is able to switch and
attack with high speed quickly,” Hitzfeld said, adding that
teams relying on the so-called Tiki-Taka style can’t expect much
space for attacks as the opponent has enough time to get
Leipzig coach Ralf Rangnick demanded a radical change in
tactics, saying “it’s about time coaches and teams start to use
speed and fast attacks as they are the strongest weapons in
Rangnick said that
teams, mainly counting on the old fashioned ball possession,
“got punished” at the 2018 World Cup.
“They tried to gain
as much ball possession as possible and suddenly recognized the
game is over; they missed to score a goal. Without getting
behind the opponents’ defense, without being able to change to
sixth or seventh gear, you don’t get anywhere today.”
According to Bayern
Munich president Uli Hoeness, modern teams have to be highly
flexible and play with kinds of tactical patterns.
“When needed they
use a long ball and try to get things done with crowbar types of
players. Future football needs a spearhead in the box. No
successful team can act without a central attacker,” Hoeness
talked about France.
“You need a fixed
point to create a frame for your game,” said former Bayern
Munich coach Jupp Heynckes, the 2013 treble winner, citing
Olivier Giroud (France), Romelu Lukaku (Belgium) and Mario
Mandzukic (Croatia) as examples.