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FC Barcelona: A Tactical Analysis - Defending book


€ 22,04


This book is an exclusive and groundbreaking study of Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona team.

This information and analysis of one of the most successful club sides in history has been in high demand and it is finally here!

The defensive part of Barcelona’s game does not get enough attention, but is integral to their philosophy and all their superior style of play.

The main elements of their tactics include pressure high up the pitch, winning the ball back quickly, maintaining a numerical advantage around the ball zone and pushing their opponents wide to limit their space.

We can now see a full analysis of Barcelona’s defensive tactics which have been so important to their success. The book shows Barca’s 4-3-3 system of play, each player’s responsibilities, positioning and movement within every possible phase of play.

Terzis Athanasios is a Tactical Professor of Football and has compiled an extensive assessment of Barcelona’s attacking play after over 1000 hours of studying all the games from the 2010-11 season. Guardiola’s team has won 3 La Liga championships, 2 UEFA Champions Leagues, 4 Spanish Cups, 2 Super Cups, and 2 FIFA World Club World Cups.

The book starts with the characteristics of the players and the philosophy of Barcelona and builds into a comprehensive overview of the defensive tactics employed with clear diagrams and detailed descriptions.


  • Strategies used to counter specific formations (the 4-4-2, 4-2-3-1, 4-3-2-1, 5-3-2 and the 4-3-2-1).
  • Assessments of specific phases of play (central zone, near the side-lines and set plays).
  • Pressure, cover and support from front, middle and defensive zones
  • Preventing and limiting opposition space
  • Defending from set-pieces
  • Plus a lot more

This gives football coaches an unbelievable chance to learn how Barcelona play and adapt their tactics to combat any team they play. Their defensive work is so important to their success and allows them to be such a strong attacking force.


Athanasios Terzis

  • UEFA 'B' coaching licence


  • M.Sc. certification in coaching and conditioning
  • M.Sc. certification in coaching and conditioning

I played for several teams in Greek professional leagues. At the age of 29 stopped playing and focused on studying football coaching. I have been head coach of several semi-pro football teams in Greece and worked as a technical director in the Academies of DOXA Dramas (Greek football league, 2nd division).

I wrote and published two books "4-3-3 the application of the system" and "4-4-2 with diamond in midfield, the application of the system". I decided to proceed in something more specific so coaches would have an idea of how top teams apply the same systems. My next project is the 4-2-3-1 of Mourhinho’s Real Madrid.

Analysing games tactically is a great love and strength of mine. I think teams have success only when they prepare well tactically.

I have watched Barcelona in most of their league and Champions league matches for the last seven years and less frequently over the past twenty years. I believe that this Barcelona side is by far the best Barcelona I have ever seen in regard to their attractive style of play and success in becoming the best side in the world. I have analysed Barcelona’s tactics for this book, which together with the teams’ incredible technical ability allows Barca to perform their attractive brand of football.

I watched every Barcelona game in the 2010-11 season creating a set of highly detailed notes on each. I watched many of the matches over 20 times. The matches were separated according to the opposing team’s formation. This book is made up of over a 1000 hours of extensive tactical research and analysis of Guardiola’s Barcelona side.

  • Author
  • Athanasios Terzis