Analysis research and credit: https://totalfootballanalysis.com/team-analysis/rb-salzburg-2021-22-inform-in-austria-scout-report-tactical-analysis-tactics Salzburg is led by 33-year-old Matthias Jaissle, the German coach who took over RB Salzburg replacing Jesse Marsch who made his move to RB Leipzig. Jaissle has been touted as the new Julian Nagelsmann and has started life extremely well with Red Bull Salzburg. Salzburg this season have lined-up in a narrow 4-3-1-2 system which proves to be so far successful, with Salzburg winning 12 of their 14 Austrian Bundesliga games, remaining unbeaten scoring an impressive 34 goals, conceding just the 9 putting them 14 points ahead of 2nd place. They also sit on top of their Champions League group, scoring 7 goals in 4 games, creating an xG of 8.2 which is the most in their Champions League group.
Direct Attacking Play
Salzburg’s attacking play is built around narrow football, playing very vertical and direct taking advantage of their pacey strikers getting in behind.
The full-backs push up high to give Salzburg natural width with the two wider central-midfielders pulling out wide creating a link-up between the midfield and full-backs, creating overloads in the wider areas which also allows the full-backs to advance high up the pitch. And this shape allows for Salzburg to then manipulate space. If the defending team defence line drops to stop the pacey strikers, that could leave the attacking midfielder in a dangerous space between defence and midfield. If the defending team's midfield drops, this can leave space out wide for the advancing full-backs.
When Salzburg are in their building phase, the ball-side midfielder will look to drop where the full-back may typically be. This looks to force an opposing player to track the midfielder opening space for another Salzburg player to drop in. The ball sided striker will then look to drop into the space left by the midfielder and as he does, the attacking midfielder will then take up the strikers position.
This is all about rotation and disrupting the opposing team's defensive shape by the use of space manipulation in order to create scoring chances.
Red Bull sides are heavily influenced by Ralf Rangnick, especially the pressing idea. Ralf Rangnick ideas are influenced by data they discovered back in 2006, where they found that the biggest chance of scoring is within 10 seconds of losing it yourself and secondly the biggest chance to win the ball back is within 8 seconds of losing it, both help understand the importance of counter-pressing.
Salzburg try and press the opposition high when they are looking to play the ball out from the back, and the Austrian team also counter-press right after losing the ball which is typical for a Red Bull side.
The aim when counter-pressing is to press the man on the ball in numbers cutting off easy passing lanes and forcing a mistake for Salzburg to recover the ball.
As Total Football analsysed, "Salzburg are one of the best pressers in the Champions League with only Liverpool, Chelsea, and Sevilla. Challenge intensity measures the amount of Duels, tackles and interceptions per minute of opponent possession. Again this highlights a team tendency to press, RB Salzburg leads the Champions League when it comes to challenging intensity."
credit Total Football Analysis
To prevent the opposing team from playing out the back, the two Salzburg strikers split engaging in both central defenders and the goalkeeper when the ball is at his feet. Salzburg's attacking midfield will tightly mark their no6 dropping to receive and the wider midfielders engaging the fullbacks.
a great example (above) of how Salzburg will look to press. Adeyemi and Okafor will attempt to force their opponents out wide where Salzburg will look to press more intensely with Sucic also engaging with the full-back out wide. Salzburg's press may seem straightforward but it's very effective. When they lose the ball, they counter-press, attempting to win the ball back immediately usually having two players surrounding the man on the ball in their bid to win the ball back.
This proves to be even more effective when pressing high as this means Salzburg can win the ball in a dangerous area, setting them up for their counter-attack.
After winning the ball back, another great strength of Salzburg is their counterattacks and their quick transitions, which fits well with their pacey strikers. Salzburg look to move the ball forward as quickly as possible, which means they'll either look to progress with the ball at feet or look to play a direct pass, whichever is on for the player. This also requires the Salzburg players off the ball to make forward runs for support.
When a team has just lost the ball they are in their most vulnerable defensive position, as everyone is positioned with attacking in mind.