Jose Bordalas: Getafe’s mastermind

Ever since Jose Bordalas took over Getafe in 2016, he raised the team to whole other level. Taking them from second division football to the Europa League quarterfinals this season and in a very good fighting position for a Top-4 spot in La Liga this season.

Although they are frequently labelled as an ‘’unsportsmanlike’’ team, Los Azulones display quality football and their players have very high tactical discipline.


Bordalas plays in a basic 4-4-2 and never changes it. His stubbornness is key to the accomplishment of his side’s dominance off the ball.


Jose wants his players to always have the advantage on a 2v1 situation anywhere on the field when the opposition has the ball. This requires:

  • Intelligent movement.
  • Interchanging positions.
  • Pressing at the right time
  • Occupying spaces seen as dangerous.

Bordalas’ players are a both tactically stout and confident when it comes to defending.  

While trying to keep the opposition away from their 18-yard box, Getafe create 2 lines of 4 players behind their forwards. This makes it difficult for the opposition sides that build-up centrally. This does not mean the 2 forwards will be waiting for the ball, not at all! They have the freedom of movement when it comes to pressing. They do have to press and help build-up the attack from behind.

Getafe’s smart press pushes the opposition to play as wide as possible, making it almost impossible for the creative players between the lines to receive the ball and help organize their game.


Getafe attack in a ‘’up-back-through’’ method.

One striker can drop into space and ask for the ball, dragging with him a CB from the opposition. As soon as he receives the ball, he shall pass it another teammate with enough vision and space to give the ball to the 2nd striker, who by this time, should already be away from the CB marking him and in a position to score.

This method helps Getafe transition from defense to attack with very short and few passes. Their 2 strikers have great spatial awareness for attacking the box, they also have the physicality to occupy the opposition CBs to create more space for each other.


Although Getafe has the highest number of fouls and cards in La Liga, their fairy-tale is purely based on their hard work and Bordalas’ stubbornness that makes him one of the very best coached in the league.

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