Marcelo Bielsa, the current coach of Uruguay and well-known guru of football, expressed his concerns about the state of the game. He believes that football is becoming less attractive despite its increasing popularity. Bielsa highlights the importance of preserving the essence of the game that made it the world’s favorite sport. He emphasizes that football is not just about five minutes of action but is a cultural expression and a form of identification for people.

Bielsa’s reflections resonate with many coaches and football experts, especially as teams like France, England, and Portugal succeed in tournaments like the Euro and Copa America. These teams prioritize possession and defensive solidity, often leading to dull and uneventful matches. Coaches refer to this style of play as the modern ‘catenaccio,’ where the main objective is to prevent the opponent from scoring rather than focusing on entertaining the fans.

France, in particular, has mastered this defensive approach, conceding only one goal and relying on their quality players to secure narrow victories. Coaches like José Luis Oltra acknowledge the importance of defensive security and organized play, but they also stress the need for creativity and attacking intent to keep the game exciting.

The debate around possession-based football and defensive strategies continues, with experts pointing out the limitations of teams that prioritize ball circulation and risk aversion over attacking flair. While possession statistics may look impressive, they can often mask a lack of clear attacking opportunities and creative play.

As the Euro tournament unfolds, the focus remains on teams like France and England, who have adopted a cautious and pragmatic approach to games. However, there is a growing sentiment among fans and experts that a more entertaining and proactive style of play, as demonstrated by Spain and the Netherlands, could bring much-needed excitement back to the sport.

In conclusion, the current trend in football towards defensive solidity and possession-based strategies has raised concerns about the lack of entertainment and creativity in the game. While teams like France and England prioritize defensive stability, there is a growing demand for more attacking intent and flair to engage fans and elevate the quality of play. As the Euro tournament progresses, the balance between defensive pragmatism and attacking prowess will continue to shape the future of football.