The new UEFA Women's Champions League whitepaper for the 2019/20 season is now viewable.
Read the whitepaper
France and Spain national team coaches Corinne Diacre and Jorge Vilda, respectively, were on the field in the eight-team final tournament held in Bilbao and San Sebastián at the end of August. Backed by the long-distance observations of current or former national team coaches Brent Hills, Monika Staab and Jarmo Matikainen', the team highlighted trends that have great potential value for coaches that further enhance the women's game.
Over the years, one of the artifacts of whitepapers has been to avoid constant comparisons to men's play. But the 2019/20 campaign confirmed that the senior women's team could hold its ground in the sense that most of the trends are similar.
For example, intense high pressure. In the final tournament, almost all the teams were ready to have high limits and dedicate the players to the high bulk pressure with the champions Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain and Olympique Lyonnais. As observers have highlighted, this creates the need to work through development levels to equip outfielders and goalkeepers with the skills needed to play through high-pressure scenarios.
The role of the goalkeeper in building from behind is among the topics covered. But the report also comments that goalkeepers have not been "seriously tested" during a tournament where they have to contend with an attempt to hit an average of 3.6 goals per game. Excluding Wolfsburg's grand quarterfinal victory over Glasgow City, it took almost 10 attempts to establish a goal - a statistic that has sparked debate among observers about practice pitch work on finishing skills.
This issue was linked to other striking statistics, such as when goals% 39' were due to set games (although no penalties) or open game goals% 79-#39 were the results of shooting from wide fields.
The season also set criteria for athletic qualifications. In the final, for example, Lyon midfielder Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir covered 12.27km in 90 minutes – a score that certainly compares to distances in the men's match – while right-wing teammate Delphine Cascarino defended against Paris' in the semi-finals at 31.45km/h.
All this, supported by graphics and video links, can now be viewed at www.uefatechnicalreports.com.
Over the last 25 seasons UEFA has published more than 130 technical reports on club and national team competitions based on the opinions of leading coaches acting as technical observers.