In an interview with the well-known anchor Park Moon-Sung, South Korean central defender Kim Min-jae was rude to Guoan teammates (mainly Yu Dabao) and coach (Genesio), which aroused widespread criticism from domestic media and fans. After the incident, Beijing Guoan Football Club immediately criticized and educated Jin Minzai. The latter also realized his mistake for the first time and expressed his willingness to accept any punishment from the club.
On May 6, South Korean anchor Park Moon Sung also publicly issued an apology letter: “Many of the criticisms and corrections made to me are correct. I should have been more cautious, but I did not do so... The Beijing Guoan Club apologizes, and I sincerely apologize to those who have been hurt by me."
As the two parties apologized one after another, this matter also came to an end. However, through Kim Min-jae's remarks, fans can't help but wonder: Is Guoan's defense really as "unbearable" as Kim Min-jae said? In the following pages, the author will start with the existing defensive staffing of Guoan, and combine many data from the coaching period of the two major coaches Schmidt and Genesio to analyze the defense strength of the Yulin Army.
In the current Guoan first team, the guards who can get a certain chance to play are No. 22 Yu Dabao, No. 2 Jin Minya, No. 3 Yuyang, No. 16 Jin Pengxiang, No. 24 Yang Fan, No. 4 Li Lei, No. 18 Jin Taeyan, and No. 27 Wang Gang. . Among these 8 players, No. 16 Jin Pengxiang was loaned out by Guoan for many years. Last season, he only got 8 appearances in Guangzhou R&F. It is conceivable that even if Jin Pengxiang returns to Guoan now, it is difficult for him with a relatively average personal strength to gain the upper hand in the main central defender competition.
On the 28th, Jiang Tao was the main right back of Beijing Guoan in the 2018 season. However, as the two head coaches of Schmidt and Genesio pay more attention to the full-back insertion, Jiang Tao, who has more general offensive ability, has gradually lost in Guoan. position. In the 2019 season, he only played 5 times on behalf of Beijing Guoan in the league.
Except for Jin Pengxiang and Jiang Tao, the other 6 guards of Beijing Guoan all got stable playing opportunities last season. In terms of central defenders, Yu Dabao and Jin Minzai are the preferred combination of the Imperial Forest Army. The former represented the team in 33 games in all competitions last season, and the latter represented the team in 34 games in all competitions last season.
From the data point of view, Yu Dabao contributed 42 steals (ranking 31st in steals), 45 interceptions (ranking 2nd in interceptions), and 64 successful attempts (ranking for the top) in the league last season. (Ranked 16th); Jin Minya contributed 34 steals last season (ranked 55th in steals), 33 interceptions (ranked 14th in interceptors), and 48 successful attempts (ranked successfully to reach 28th) ). Looking at these three data alone, Yu Dabao’s performance is better than Jin Minzai. We cannot deny that this is related to Yu Dabao’s technical characteristics pushing forward, and Jin Minzai is more responsible for delayed protection, but it is also sufficient to prove Jin Minza’s previous treatment of Dabao. Criticism is biased.
In the winter window of this season, Beijing Guoan spent 2.6 million euros in transfer fees to introduce Zhongwei Yang Fan from Tianjin TEDA. In the 2019 season, Yang Fan played 26 times in the Super League on behalf of Tianjin TEDA. He is one of the team’s ability to complete relegation multiple rounds in advance. (Yang Fan completed 66 steals in the Super League last season and ranked 6th in the steals list. Data is very rare for a central defender). The arrival of Yang Fan demonstrates the determination of Beijing Guoan management to strengthen the team's defense. In addition, they already have a national midfielder Yu Yang. It is foreseeable that Genesio will have a very diverse selection of personnel in the midfielder position in the new season.
In the position of full back, No. 4 Li Lei and No. 27 Wang Gang are the first choice for the team's left and right backs respectively. Among them, Li Lei contributed 54 steals in the league last season, ranking 16th in the Super League steals list. Wang Gang contributed 60 steals in the league last season, ranking 8th in the Super League steals list. It is not accidental that Li Lei and Wang Gang were able to rank in the top of the steal list, and it has a lot to do with the high-pressure frontcourt tactics advocated by Schmidt and Genesio.
As early as Schmidt's first season in charge of the team, the German coach began to target the physical fitness of Beijing Guoan players. In Guoan's pressing strategy, two full-backs assisted in the midfield area to assist in the pressing occupy a very important link. Neither Schmidt nor Genesio will order the two full-backs to be placed on the back line immediately after losing the ball, but hope that they will predict the opponent's passing route through their overall view of the field and assist. The midfield teammates double-teamed for the first time, in order to be able to steal on the spot to launch a second attack.
Of course, the high-pressure press can only be called Beijing Guoan's dominant tactics without the ball. Considering that Guoan has two talented players, Augusto and Vieira, in the midfield, they also put more emphasis on "infiltration in the center and quick sidelines" in their positional attack. In short, the coach hopes to use Augusto and Vieira’s strong ball-holding ability to force the opponent’s defensive formation to shrink to the center, thereby creating more space for the two full-backs to get the ball in. . Once Li Lei and Wang Gang are in place, Augusto, who holds the ball in the middle, will finish the side split as soon as possible, thus seeking an efficient side-to-center combination.
In the Chinese Super League last season, Beijing Guoan's right back Wang Gang completed a total of 16 successful crosses, ranking 35th in the Chinese Super League. Many fans may have some doubts seeing this data: they all say that the full-back insertion is a very critical part of Guoan's offense. Why is the number of successful crosses between Li Lei and Wang Gang not high? It is not complicated to explain this issue. Fans who understand Guoan's tactics should know that although their full-backs have a very large range, they have not completed the last pass.
When Augusto and others finish dividing the sides in midfield, they will not be inserted into the penalty area for routine outflanks. Instead, they will use their flexible running in the frontcourt to pull the sides in a timely manner to assist their full-backs to make breakthroughs. Under such a background environment, the opponent's defensive line that originally shrunk to the center is bound to start to open up to the two sides again. The mid-rib gap was then exposed in an instant. It is based on this tactical strategy, whether it is Wang Gang or Li Lei after getting the ball from the wing, they will not seek a personal breakthrough for the first time, but will control the ball and wait for Augusto or Vieira to pull the side. Augusto completed 54 successful crosses in the league last season, ranking fifth in the entire Super League.
As early as a few seasons ago, the Guoan management already had the idea of strengthening the team's defense. However, considering the team's unstable record at the time, the club still hopes to introduce high-level offensive players first to strengthen the team's attacking power in the front court. In the 2017 season, Beijing Guoan conceded a total of 42 goals in 30 league rounds, averaging 1.4 goals per game, and finally ranked 9th in the league. In the 2018 season, Beijing Guoan conceded 45 goals in 30 league rounds, averaging 1.5 goals per game, and finally ranked fourth in the league. It can be found that compared to the 2017 season, Beijing Guoan's number of goals conceded in the 2018 season has not decreased but increased, but their ranking has risen from 9th to 4th. The reason is very simple. The team has strengthened its offensive strength in a short time by introducing high-level foreign aid in the center and front field, thereby making up for various deficiencies in the back line.
From another perspective, this strategy can only ensure that the team ranks in the upper and middle reaches of the league. To shake Guangzhou Evergrande’s monopoly on the championship, Beijing Guoan must spend more on the defense. In the 2019 season, the Guoan coaching team created more diversified defensive tactics for the team's back line, and also introduced excellent defensive players like Jin Minya. From the final result, although Guoan still failed to win the championship, they only conceded 26 goals in 30 league rounds, making it the second best defensive team in the Super League (second only to conceding 24 goals. Guangzhou Evergrande).
Last season, Guoan's defensive end in the league progress is obvious to all, but the performance in the AFC is not satisfactory. After returning to the AFC after many years, Guoan only achieved 2 wins, 1 tie, 3 losses and 7 points in the group stage, ranking third and was eliminated. What is even more unacceptable for the fans is that Guoan only scored 1 draw and 3 losses in the 4 games against the Japanese and Korean teams (a 1:3 loss to Jeonbuk Hyundai in the away game, a 0-0 draw at home to Urawa Red Diamonds, Lost to Jeonbuk Hyundai at home 0:1, and lost to Urawa Red Diamonds at 0:3 away). Scored 1 goal in 4 games and lost 7 goals. This result proves that Guoan's successful frontcourt pressing tactics in the Super League did not work well in front of Japanese and Korean opponents.
上赛季，国安队在防守端的防守进步对所有人来说都是显而易见的，但是在亚足联的表现并不令人满意。重返亚足联多年后，国安队小组赛仅取得2胜1平3负7分，排名第三，被淘汰。对于球迷来说，更令人无法接受的是，国安队在对阵日本和韩国队的4场比赛中仅得到1局和3负（在客场比赛中全北现代以1：3失利，主场0-0战平Urawa Red Diamonds，在主场0：1输给全北现代，在0：3输给Urawa Red Diamonds。在4场比赛中打进1球，输了7球。这一结果证明，国安队在中超联赛中成功的前场紧逼战术在日韩对手面前表现不佳。
Why did Guoan's defensive strategy fail to produce results when facing Japanese and Korean teams? This has a lot to do with the style of Japanese and Korean football. Unlike the Chinese Super League, the Japanese and South Korean teams emphasized the use of rapid underfoot transmission to tear out space in a local area. The two full-backs that Guoan pushed to the midfield were broken by their opponents before they had had time to build an interception line. Therefore, Jin Minzai and Yu Dabao's two central defenders have to be in a passive pull-up defense for a long time, and the team's mid-rib gap will be exposed again.
In the final round of the AFC Champions League last season, Urawa's second goal against Guoan came from the use of the gap behind the wing. As shown in the picture above, the right interception line formed by Wang Gang and Augusto underestimated Nagasawa Kazue's personal strength, and the latter completed the breakthrough by himself. It was too late for central defender Yu Dabao to limit Nagasawa Kazue's next move. The latter entered the penalty area with the ball and assisted Yuki Muto to complete the goal.
Guoan's third goal also came from the loss of the full-back defense. As shown in the picture above, in the attack of Urawa Red Diamonds, Beijing Guoan’s right back again lost position. After taking the ball, Yuki Muto grabbed the center back to fill up the defense and found the inverted triangle to find Shinzo Shinzo who outflanked the middle. Calmly push and shoot successfully without being marked.
国安队的第三个进球也来自失去后卫的防守。如上图所示，在浦和红钻的进攻中，北京国安的右后卫再次失去位置。接球后，武藤由纪（Yuki Muto）抓住中心位置回补防守，找到倒三角形，找到了超越中路的真三伸三（Shinzo Shinzo）。冷静地成功推入并射击而没有被标记。
If the two high-pressure full-backs participating in the press fail to break the ball, the wing will expose a huge gap behind them. This situation is particularly evident in the last 20 minutes of the game. If Guoan wants to wash away the "shame" of last season in the AFC this season, it should increase the success rate of the midfield block while ensuring the offensive intensity.
In Group E of Beijing Guoan, the other three teams are Seoul FC from the K League, Melbourne Victory from the Australian Super League, and Chiang Rai United from the Thai Super League. In the second round of the group stage on February 18, Guoan defeated Chiang Rai United 1-0 in an away game, winning the first AFC victory of the season and scoring three points with Seoul FC and Melbourne.
In the K-League regular season last season, Seoul FC ranked third in the league with a score of 54 points with 15 wins, 9 draws and 9 losses in 33 games. On January 28th, Seoul FC defeated Jeddah from Malaysia 4:1 in the AFC Champions League qualifier and successfully qualified for the AFC Champions League.
Let's take a look at an overview of Seoul FC's offensive and defensive statistics in the K-League last season. On the offensive end, Seoul FC scored a total of 50 goals in 33 games, ranking third in the K-League; on the defensive end, Seoul FC conceded a total of 41 goals in 33 games, even better than Seongnam, which was fourth from the bottom. There are 5 more for one sum.
Judging from the recent performance of Seoul FC, their defensive problems still have not been effectively improved. In the first round of the K-League this season, Seoul FC lost 1:3 away to Gangwon FC, which ranked sixth in the regular season last season. More importantly, the ball possession attack that Seoul FC has always been good at has also been completely suppressed by Gangwon FC. Their ball possession rate in this game is only 30%. Both the number of shots and the number of dangerous offenses are far behind their opponents.
Let us introduce the state of Melbourne victory this season. As the semi-finals of the 2018~2019 season playoffs, Melbourne Victory has a record collapse this season. So far, they have only scored 5 wins, 5 draws, 11 losses and 20 points in 21 Australian Super League matches, ranking second in the standings, far away from the top six.
In the last 7 games, Melbourne won only 2 wins, 1 draw and 4 losses (6 goals, 12 goals lost). It can be seen that the current Melbourne victory has huge problems both on offensive and defensive ends. They will be an important channel for Beijing Guoan to score points in the group stage.
Let's finally introduce the opponent that Guoan has faced before-Chiang Rai United. Similar to the victory in Melbourne, Chiang Rai United also experienced a huge decline in record this season. So far, they have only achieved 1 win, 2 draws, 1 loss and 5 points in the 4 rounds of the Thai Super League, ranking 10th in the standings.
At the same time, Chiang Rai United’s performance in the AFC can only be described as terrible. They have all lost in the two rounds of group matches that have been conducted (0:1 victory in the away game to Melbourne, 0:1 loss to Beijing in the home game. Guoan), currently ranked first from the bottom in the standings. However, Beijing Guoan must not underestimate the enemy because of the recent downturn of the opponent. Throughout the first round of the AFC Champions League group match between Guoan and the Chiang Rai United, although the Chiang Rai United had only 39% of the ball in the entire game, they did it. With 14 shots (only 3 fewer than Guoan), the number of dangerous offenses is almost the same as that of Beijing Guoan (38:44).
Compared with last season's "death group", Guoan's pressure in the AFC this season is undoubtedly much lighter. However, the consideration of good or bad state is only a reference for judging opponents. Guoan wants to make a steady progress in the group stage and should focus more on improving its own abilities.
Going back to the topic mentioned at the beginning of the article, Guoan's defense does have many loopholes, as Jin Minzai said, but it is by no means "unbearable". The various loopholes exposed by Beijing Guoan in the defense process are more of a compromise to strengthen the offense. If they can grasp the intermittent period before the start of the league, strengthen defensive coordination and improve the success rate of the midfield and front court on the premise of ensuring offensive strength, I believe that the new season's Royal Forest Army will definitely make people shine.