Inside a one-on-one video analysis session: Hannover’s Mark Diemers reveals the level of tactical detail | Soccer News


“Maybe I show him too much towards the middle on his right foot. I should have let him go to the side because there is less danger there than in the middle.”

Hannover midfielder Mark Diemers reviews his highlights from the game against Schalke the weekend before. There are 49 to examine and the session will last over an hour as he discusses every moment in forensic detail with his personal tactical coach.

This man is Loran Vrielink, founder of Tactalyse. The two worked together for seven years. Vrielink is now based at Barcelona and his compatriot has moved to Germany on loan from Feyenoord. They talk through Microsoft Teams. The analysis is fast.

Mark Diemers Fact Sheet

Age: 28

Nationality: Dutch

Club: Hannover 96 (on loan from Feyenoord)

Career appearances: 248

career goals 37

Vrielink calls the clip number. “Eight,” he said confidently. Diemers watches the 14-second video. “Yeah, I’m too aggressive, I play too much,” concedes the Dutchman as he watches his opponent easily play the ball past him, speeding up the attack.

“Why,” Vrielink asks, “did that happen three times in the second half?” No time for niceties as it soon switches to clip nine, showing something similar. “It was more of a transition game so there were tougher decisions to make,” Diemers explained.

And so on for an hour. At the end of the session, at which sky sports received exclusive access, Diemers spends some time explaining why it’s such an important part of his work week – a vital part of helping him become the best he can be.

“Every week I see results,” says Diemers sky sports. “If you ask a lot of people they won’t see it, they think they’re just passing the ball, but there are so many decisions being made on the pitch. That’s why it’s so important that I studying my clips even when I’m away from the club.”

He is one of a growing number of clients who use Tactalyse to provide that extra level of information when players are looking to improve their game. The idea is that he complements the team’s tactical instructions, adding to the analysis provided by the club.

“A lot of clubs are a bit against it because they want to give their full contribution to the player. But a team has 25 players and there’s a head coach and three assistants. It’s really difficult to give that attention to all of them. players every week because there are only 24 hours in a day.

“With club coaches you often look at the big moments like scoring a goal or conceding a goal. We do that twice a week. With Loran we look at very simple moments like a throw-in and we always think about the way we could do more of this.”

A few minutes earlier, Vrielink showed Diemers such a situation. It’s clip number 30 on his list, titled ‘ground duel after throw-in’ and it’s a moment in the match that no one in the crowd would have spent a single second thinking about as they left the stadium.

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Mark Diemers scoring on a throw-in against Schalke – was he too far right?

A Schalke player collects the ball and returns it to the thrower. Nothing to see? Wrong. “I’m too aggressive,” Diemers said. “I’m too close to his right side. The striker could have turned away from me and maybe created a big chance.” Vrielink agrees.

It’s a detail they can discuss in part because of the longevity of their relationship. Diemers has only been on loan at Hannover for a few months. Vrielink followed his route from Utrecht to Feyenoord via De Graafschap and Fortuna Sittard.

“Seven years ago there were different fundamentals. Loran has also evolved and brought new ideas. I’ve also changed positions in my career which gives us different things to focus on. Now it’s It’s about body position and movement between the lines.”

This was the subject of clip 29, labeled “covering floor – side” and an example of what Vrielink implies was an example of poor outreach. “How many head checks do you see? Diemers concedes. “That’s interesting. When you ask like that, I can’t see enough of it.”

Clip of Mark Diemers showing him trying to intercept a pass for Hannover 96 against Schalke
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Mark Diemers looked well placed to intercept the forward pass

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The ball went inside Mark Diemers (35) – was he too far towards the touchline?

“You look at the ball and get dragged to the side,” adds Vrielink. They cut to clip 91, another game pass that seems uneventful to the untrained eye. Diemers jockeys close to the corner and when the ball is passed to the other side the danger has passed.

“I think I did really well,” Diemers said. The response is quick. “After the situation? There had been no head control to ensure the player he had marked hadn’t escaped him if the ball came back. “I’m just focused on the ball. I have to look around more.”

Now 28, Diemers takes on more defensive responsibilities than in his youth and that goes a long way to explaining the focus of their sessions now. There is still work to attack. “Stay between the lines, create triangles.” But defense is the aspect he wants to improve.

Mark Diemers jockey for the ball for Hannover against Schalke
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Mark Diemers focuses on the opponent’s body language as well as the ball when jockeying

They cut to Clip 33, “Jockey in a Ground Duel” and discuss the importance of studying an opponent’s body language rather than just the ball. A recurring theme is a 3-0 loss to Nuremberg which the player himself sees as a low point in an otherwise strong start.

“We talk about it a lot because it was a very bad game for me. I was too aggressive, I was playing too much, and I improved a lot on that. We focus a lot on defense because of this game. My body orientation is much better than three or four weeks ago.

Mark Diemers failed to control the header when the ball is across the pitch for Hannover against Schalke
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Mark Diemers fails to check the header when the ball is on the other side of the pitch

“Head controls are another big improvement. In the beginning I had to focus on it. Head control, head control, head control. Now it’s automatic because I trained it so much Sometimes I think I did a head-check and I look back at the clip and see five.

“I became better because Loran made me aware of my behavior in these situations. I learned why these things are important, why certain behaviors are good, why certain behaviors are not so good and what is the results.”

Hannover 96 midfielder Mark Diemers in the cup game against RB Leipzig
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Hannover 96 midfielder Mark Diemers in a recent cup game against RB Leipzig

As Diemers bounces his two-year-old son on his lap in the kitchen, he jokes with Vrielink that he spends more time thinking about his tactical trainer than his partner – and that’s only in part jokingly. When he is in the field, their sessions are never far from his thoughts.

“Sometimes I have a moment in the game and I already think Monday or Tuesday I’m going to see that clip. It makes you sharper for the next moment. I think that’s a really good thing. I think that tells you how much we focus on the details.”

Vrielink thinks the awareness already elevates Diemers above many of his peers. “Three years ago I wondered how long I could stay in this process with a player, but Mark was eager to learn six years ago and he’s still eager to learn now,” he said.

“Mark has only progressed in his career and that’s because he’s aware of the details. It’s amazing the impact he’s made for himself because he knows exactly his mistakes. A player who does not do this work will not learn from these mistakes.

“Even Premier League and Bundesliga players have no idea what they’re doing wrong. They don’t see the orientation of their body. They don’t see their opponent. They don’t see where the spaces because they were just watching the ball. Mark sees all of that now.”

Diemers himself wants to be humble. “I still make a lot of mistakes,” he says. “I’m only human, after all. But it’s good for me to see the improvement. We’ve been working on this for many years now and I’m still developing as a player.

“I’m 29 this year so I’m not really young anymore but I think after my career I will try to help the players with this video analysis, maybe also by working on the pitch. It would be really interesting. I already help some of my teammates in training.

“I already think like a coach.”

Loran Vrielink talks about a match with Dutch international defender Stefan de Vrij
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Loran Vrielink goes through a game with Dutch international defender Stefan de Vrij

Five Common Tactical Mistakes

According to Loran Vrielink

  1. “Failing to understand that 98% of game situations are off the ball. Focus on them more than actions with the ball.”
  2. “Doesn’t provide the right support. Players walk into play rather than standing between the lines to receive the ball into space.”
  3. “Many think of defending as trying to win the ball. Often defending is about getting your opponent to make the mistake.”
  4. “Underestimating the value of head checking. Understanding what to do with that information is even more important.”
  5. “Looking at the ball is rarely the correct orientation of the body. Turning towards where you want to go and not where the ball came from.”

Conclusion: “The biggest mistake players make is that they don’t understand why you do what you do on the pitch because they underestimate the value of tactics. They don’t take it as seriously as the physical aspects. or techniques. That’s a big mistake.”




Sky Sports

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