Following Markus Anfang’s harsh sacking in April of this year, Achim Beierlorzer took over as Head Coach of FC Köln in the summer, following Köln’s promotion back to the Bundesliga. In doing so he became Köln’s third permanent manager since Peter Stöger’s departure in December of 2017. It was certainly an interesting appointment, with Beierlorzer’s combined win percentages at his last two clubs, RB Leipzig and Jahn Regensburg, being less than 40%. In this tactical analysis, I will look at FC Köln’s tactical tendencies as well as their strengths and weaknesses as a side so far under Beierlorzer.
The season so far
After beating Wehen Wiesbaden on penalties in the DFB-Pokal, Köln have won one of their first three Bundesliga games. They have been dealt a particularly difficult start to the season.
After losing to both Wolfsburg and Borussia Dortmund they managed to beat an SC Freiburg side who had started the season well by winning their first two games themselves. The fixture list doesn’t relent and Köln will face Borussia Mönchengladbach and Bayern Munich in the next fortnight.
So far Beierlorzer has preferred a 4-4-2- this formation has been used in three of Köln’s four competitive games this season, as well as throughout pre-season. This differs from last season where Köln predominantly played with five midfielders, either in a 3-5-2 or a 4-1-4-1.
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