Valencia hosted Krasnodar in the round 16 of the Europa League in the first of a two-legged tie. They have been displaying an impressive rise of form under their coach Marcelino in domestic cups and La Liga. Meanwhile Krasnodar themselves have been enjoying a dream run in the Europe League handing teams like Sevilla and Bayern Leverkusen surprising defeats. In this tactical analysis we examine the contest between the two aiming to gain an advantage at the Mestalla before going into the second leg.


Marcelino had objectives to rotate the squad while having his key players convert dangerous situations. He stuck to the 4-4-2 that has been effective for Valencia, only bringing in Antonio Lato in place of the dynamic José Luis Gayà. Mouctar Diakhaby was also paired up alongside Gabriel Paulista for a change.

Valencia Krasnodar Europa League tactical analysis statistics
source: wyscout

Krasnodar adopted a 4-2-3-1 with the reliable firepower of Viktor Claesson, Kristoffer Olsson and Yuri Gazinskiy. In defence, the pressing shape changed to more of a 4-3-3 with Cristian Ramirez and Wanderson pressing high alongside Claesson.

First-half tactics

From the beginning, we saw Valencia using the effectiveness of their inverted wide midfielders and attacking full-backs.

To read the full match analysis, click here.