Real Madrid put in a fantastic performance to overcome Massimiliano Allegri’s brilliant Juventus 4-1 in the Champions League final. And while every player in Zinedine Zidane’s team were excellent, the importance of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos deserved special mention yet again.

Operating in their customary central midfield roles, the dynamic duo’s intelligent movement, astute positional sense and distribution qualities had a profound impact throughout the win.

The Match Analyst  Image-1-Real-Madrid-Pass-Connections

Created with Wyscout Report

Using the Wyscout Playlist and Draw App, we can see how significant Madrid’s midfield dynamic duo’s occupation of their respective half space when in possession proved to be.

With Juventus defending in what was ostensibly a 4-4-2 that focused heavily on protecting the centre, Modric and Kroos were able to exploit the spaces either side of Juventus’ first line of pressure by receiving on the outside of Juve’s front two. This allowed them to receive possession in a less congested area of the pitch and have an excellent view of the field to construct, orchestrate and animate Los Merengues’ offensive moves.

In addition, their positioning allowed them to be in ideal areas to shift over when the ball was on the touchline to create overloads, so they could get through the Bianconeri’s defensive structure. Their capacity to create numerical superiority in such instances can be seen in the image below.

The Match Analyst  Image-2-Overload-

Created with Wyscout “Playlist And Draw” App

Another way the pair affected the game in this area of the pitch was by making clever decoy runs that dragged their marker away to create space for Casemiro to receive possession freely (refer to graphic below).

The Match Analyst  Image-3-Decoy-Run

Created with Wyscout “Playlist And Draw” App

Vitally, their positioning also enabled them to cover in behind their fullbacks, giving Dani Carvajal and Marcelo a brilliant platform to push upfield, which gave Madrid essential structural security in case of a turnover.

The Match Analyst  Image-4-Defensive-Cover

Created with Wyscout “Playlist And Draw” App

All things considered, the importance of Modric and Kroos in giving their side so much control, balance and quality from their designated area of operation proved indispensable in Los Blancos winning a memorable twelfth Champions League trophy.