Wolfsburg are in the fourth and final UEFA Champions League spot, three points above fifth-placed Bayer Leverkusen. Oliver Glasner has turned them into European aspirants. New Bundesliga Match Facts "Most Pressed Player", "Attacking Zones" and "Average Position: Trends" help explain how…
Wolfsburg's game is characterised by high intensity. No Bundesliga club has completed more sprints (5,040, at an average of 252 per game), or more intense runs this season. In attack and defence, the Wolves rely on pressing.
Watch: Three new Match facts added to AWS
"Most Pressed Player" Schlager - a lot goes through the flanks
Xaver Schlager epitomises Wolfsburg's game. The 23-year-old Austria international often presses to win the ball back in the final third, thus ensuring favourable changes of possession and better chances. He has been the "Most Pressed Player" six times this season, but Oliver Glasner's midfield lynchpin is so strong that he can still break free from tricky situations and initiate his own attacks.
The soccer field is generally divided into three zones, tactically. The new Bundesliga Match Fact "Attack Zones" divides the final third into four vertical zones. Wolfsburg attack a lot from the wings, attempting many crosses. The most prolific recipient of these crossed is striker Wout Weghorst, who has had 13 shots on goal after a ball in from out wide, which is third only behind Eintracht Frankfurt's Andre Silva (17) and Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (14).
Variable in attack
The third new Bundesliga match fact, "Average Positions: Trends", shows how basic formations change in certain phases of play. Wolfsburg's 4-2-3-1 turned into a three-man system on Matchday 16 against RB Leipzig in the 22nd minute, for example, the Lower Saxony club creating a three-on-two situation on the left wing.
Glasner has made his team a real serious proposition in the race for Champions League qualification through tactical finesse. At this rate, it would be a surprise to see them finish any lower than fourth.