Friday, 20 May 2011

Brasileirão In Focus: Coritiba

Back in the Brasileirão after a year down in Série B, a Coxa are in the form of their lives, having broken the Brazilian record for the most consecutive victories (24). They made light work of the Série B last year, coasted to the trophy in the Campeonato Paranaense, and they crushed Palmeiras 6-0 in a historic first leg of the Copa do Brasil quarter final. These results and their attractive style have inspired certain people to refer to them as ‘the Barcelona of South America’.

They have formed a really good unit, everyone pulling their weight and playing for the team. They are organized, good on the counter and dangerous at set-pieces. They play in what looks like a standard Brazilian 4-2-2-2, but with a couple of alterations. Between the two attacking midfielders Davi and Rafinha, the former operates more in the middle in a number nine role, whilst Rafinha drifts out to either flank and pushes up to attack. The two forwards Anderson Aquino and Bill do something similar, with Bill staying in the centre, and Anderson Aquino drifting out to either side and sometimes dropping back in to midfield. (see diagram)

In the transfer market they adopted an interesting tactic, signing several fringe players from higher reputation clubs. This has worked out superbly, as they have managed to get a hold of a crop of talented, experienced and extremely motivated individuals. Defensive midfielder Léo Gago has proved to be a fabulous addition to the side, he was on loan at the side last season from Vasco and Coritiba will be delighted that they have managed to tie him down to a permanent contract. A good athletic player, does the simple stuff well but also provides a threat going forward, one to watch out for this year.

Several people will have their eyes on Marcelo Oliveira’s side this season, and I do not think they will be disappointed. This is a motivated team who will be looking to establish themselves amongst the top sides in the league. It might be a little too early for them this year, but I would not be at all surprised if they ended up in the top half of the table and with a Copa Sulamericana spot.

Expected formation:
football formations


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