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13th Aug 2018

Sam Allardyce says Britain is ‘obsessed’ with playing out from the back

Sam Allardyce has never been into possession based football, and today he launched a scathing attack on Unai Emery's tactics against Manchester City

Reuben Pinder

He’s never been into tippy tappy football

You might have noticed that Sam Allardyce has been all over the airwaves recently, taking any opportunity to put his opinions across and keep himself relevant as the Premier League sack race begins.

His latest rant came this morning, when he launched a scathing attack on Arsenal’s manager Unai Emery and more broadly British football for being hellbent on playing a certain way.

Arsenal lost 2-0 to Manchester City on Sunday and Allardyce believes that Emery got his tactics completely wrong.

“It’s the manager’s fault. Don’t ask somebody to do, against Manchester City, what you shouldn’t do,” he said.

“You should not play out that way against Manchester City, what do Manchester City do? Press press press. So why do you try to play out when they press press press?”

“You cannot just force ‘the only way to play is this way’ in this country.”

“We are getting obsessed with this stupid ‘let’s play out from the back, split the centre halves either side of the 18 yard box and go and play from there.”

He did admit then “when you’re the best, you can do it”, suggesting that nobody should try to play City at their own game. And that is a fair point to make, but Allardyce has not exactly shown any ambition to play an expansive style of football during his managerial career, even when his side should – on paper – dominate a match.

He’s never been keen on possession based football. During his time at West Ham, in a post-match press conference, he once claimed that “all this tippy tappy stuff everyone keeps going on about the right way to play football’s all a load of rubbish sometimes.”

Succinctly put, as ever, from the man who also claimed that if his name were ‘Sam Alladici’, he would have been in the frame to take over at Real Madrid.