Warning: Long read
Spielverlagerung is the German version of the Zonal Marking site.
A good read on how Jupp has created a monster defense from a combination of high pressing, man marking, and ignoring the offsides trap. The combination of athletic center backs and a sweeper keeper to go along with positionally astute central midfielders, particularly Javi Martinez who is one of the best in the world at maintaining possession after making a tackle.
A little snippet from the article:
quote: Image: http://spielverlagerung.de/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Bayern-vs-D%C3%BCsseldorf-Szene-13-02-Manndeckung-Dante.png
Bank of four without playing the opponent offside?
As already stated: Dante and Boateng are strong in the air, excellent tacklers, and very fast on their feet – at least in long distance runs. Bayern’s offensive formation in ball possession also requires outstanding coordination, so Heynckes curbed line play (staying on the same horizontal line as it is usual in a back four). The Bavarian defenders still act as a bank and shift in orientation towards the ball, but they use man-marking again and again without provoking offsides
This scene features an extreme example. Düsseldorf tries to counter. Because of Bayern’s fluidity, the left side is left wide open. Badstuber rushes back. In this situation, two major problems may arise.
*If Boateng remains behind, the pass receiver might turn and pass into the free space on the side.
*If Dante goes forward, a blind and imprecise long ball or a standard extension into space might be dangerous.
Playing at offside is always risky. So both situatively man-mark their respective counterparts. Dante stays deeper than his opponent, offside is of no interest – if your defenders are combative and quick, a running duel or tackle 40 yards from the goal is probably more promising than hoping for an offside situation. A maximum vertical space compression is not necessary out of principle.
In this case, Boateng succeeds to do so alone, without Dante. Boateng even captures the ball in this scene. The ball is close to five additional Bayern players in the immediate vicinity – ball possession is a mere formality.