Analyzing Demba Ba's debut goals

Chelsea cruise into the next round of the greatest cup competition in the world as defending champions, the FA Cup. A 5-1 thumping of Southampton was overshadowed by debutant Demba Ba grabbing two goals.

Here’s his first goal in a Chelsea jersey.

The buildup was smart and to the point. Hazard has the ball on his feet at the moment with Ba lingering around the penalty box. Ramires has acres of space to run into, and in this game he was the attacking pivot playerLuiz on the other hand gets into the middle of the pitch to provide cover for the defenders as Mikel does. Moses needs to wait as Hazard needs to make the decision of tearing down the left flank or cutting in. Moses does the exact opposite. Same goes for Mata.  Cole on the other hand needs to go back and cover the left flank in the defensive third.

First to notice is Moses. He made the right decision and drifted a bit to the middle. This can help him act as a pivot player and also have the chance of drifting right and covering right if Hazard changes his mind. So in this specific frame , Luiz  and Moses are pivot players, while Mata gets the No.10 role, Ramires gets the wide role on the right and Hazard gets the left.

Ramires put himself in the perfect position to cover the right flank, whereas Ba might be offside, but he has a plan inside his brain. The dotted lines show the trajectory of the pass Hazard sends to Mata.

Take your time as you look at the frame. First off,  Moses makes it obvious that he is drifting into the center as Hazard  retreats back.  Ramires moves into the center but at the same time keeps the option of drifting to the right open. Ba keeps himself well offside as Mata’s  movement is shown in the dotted lines.

What we must know is that Mata  is smart enough to know that Ba has done that on purpose, as he has full trust on the Spaniard’s ability to get past the defender. The circle marked Torres is the position where Fernando would have put himself if he was playing. The poacher’s instinct  is ever-present in Ba, whereas it has just disappeared for Torres.

Here’s the second goal –

Moses has the ball at his feet and is looking to give it to Ramires  who has made the run inside. Mata  has the option to run in the middle whereas Ba has the option of drifting left but won’t do it. Torres  on the other hand would.  Hazard  can cut inside as well.

Moses  gives the ball to Ramires . Cole  needs to get back and defend.  Ba and Mata  can get inside the box, while Hazard asks for a pass and gets it.  The black arrow shows his intended movement which resulted in a pass from the Brazilian.

Moses  takes quite some time to get up and should drift down the left flank. Mata has the opportunity of getting inside the box whereas Ramires  can move front or go back and defend. Ba has revved up his engine and is looking to move into space as Hazard looks for the correct moment to give him a through ball. He can even continue down the right flank.

Take your time and stare at the frame.  Ba has made the run and Hazard has picked him out. Both Mata and Ramires  have entered the box and this gives Chelsea a greater chance of picking up and rebound and scoring if Ba is to hit the keeper. Moses is asking for a pass and Hazard  has noticed it.

This is where we understand the difference  between direct approach and indirect approach. An indirect approach  would see Hazard play a high lofted ball to Moses, whose trajectory can be seen in the dotted curved line. The direct approach see’s the ball played to Ba, and a fine goal.

Did you enjoy seeing him play and score these 2 goals? Can he keep Torres on the bench?

  1. ThankGod Emuka says

    That match gave me joy and hope that Chelsea is still fighting for trophies this season. Congrats to the big players and coach Rafa. Moses just needs time to off load what talents he’s got. Up CHELSEA FOR LIFE!!!!! We no de shake for FIFA ratings!

    1. Zane says

      Fifa ratings are poor bro,especially our defenders.

  2. Anonymous says

    Nice analysis, love the graphical work. But did i hear u say “”Chelsea cruise into the next round of
    the greatest competition in the
    world the FA
    Cup”” pls stop that rough play.

    1. Sherry Philips says

      Sorry to say but the FA Cup is regarded as the greatest cup competition in the world due to its rich history.
      Thanks anyways. 🙂

  3. Kobbyhans says

    I want to see Ba and Torres play together. Ofcourse, Ba can bench Torres

  4. lala says

    nice analysis

    1. Sherry Philips says

      Thanks !

  5. Devin Young says

    As a new “Football Junkie” this has made me appreciate what I watched even more. I noticed that everything just flowed better with Ba in the lineup, and the last photo illustrates just that. He completely opened up the left side with a simple check inside to hazard. Great work. I’ll be bookmarking this site, and will be back for sure!

    1. Sherry Philips says

      Appreciate that , thanks ! 😀

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