Watch: ‘Use the arms’ – Fonseca explains defending 101 to Milan squad

By Ben Dixon -

Under Paulo Fonseca, AC Milan will be a much more physical team, and a video has emerged from a training session where he signifies how he wants his defenders to make the most of their bodies against the opposition.

Seeing professional footballers being taught the basics of defending seems somewhat odd, but sometimes, you must revisit the ‘basics’ to get to the elite level. It is often said that football is a simple game played at an elite level, and Fonseca’s Milan training seems to be reinforcing this idea.

Of course, there are tactical nuances that must be picked up on by players, which will come with time, but the basic details must be nailed down quickly as Fonseca begins to align his squad with his views for his team.

Reports in recent weeks have suggested that the Portuguese coach is looking to add more physicality to his team, and his defensive style would strengthen this idea.

As seen in the video below, Fonseca has taken a very onboard method to training, getting involved personally with the squad rather than being on the sidelines like other coaches may prefer. He allows Samuel Chukwueze a chance to ‘dribble’ at him and then recreates the drill, demanding his players use their arms to help win the battles.

Of course, there is more to a system than this, but establishing the basics and getting them right in the early stages of his tenure is vital, as is being involved with the players.

Tags AC Milan Paulo Fonseca


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  1. Next, basics of the ball and how to kick it in the desired direction.

    It appears there was so much tactics drilled into our players during Pioli tenure, that they forgot the basics. Or they never knew them in the first place.

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