Marking (association football)#Zonal marking

Zone defense is a defense tactic in team sports. In contrast to man coverage, which assigns a player a direct opponent, the pass routes are served at room coverage.


In football based modern game systems on the principle of zone defense. The fact that the direct assignment is canceled, are the tasks of the defender in the build-up play to see the tasks of the striker and midfielder in defending against the opponent's attacks. By a ball -oriented shifting of positions - which requires constant monitoring of game action - the defense work is distributed to the entire team and defender to be involved in the build-up play. Goal of shifting is especially close to the ball a majority situation to create, so either put the ball leading opponent under pressure or to create as several play stations at their own possession.

Space coverage of players requires a high degree of tactical skill. The positions of the man-marker and the sweeper will be converted into the center-back and full-back. By defining the positions of the quick transition from defense to attack is facilitated in comparison to man coverage.

The origins of zone defense be attributed to coach like Valery Lobanovsky (Dynamo Kiev), Arrigo Sacchi (AC Milan) and Rinus Michels (Ajax Amsterdam).

The first, introduced the spatial coverage in Germany in the late 1970s, were Ernst Happel at Hamburger SV, and Gyula Lóránt first as coach of Eintracht Frankfurt, then at Bayern Munich. The Wizard of Lorant, Pál Csernai, who inherited these as head coach of Bayern, caused an upsurge of the Association through the new defense strategy. In Germany, the zone defense sat down, however, quite hesitantly through - so most clubs as well as the national team played ( change only under Rudi Völler ) for a long time with Libero and Marking.

Furthermore, there are differences in the cover space in the particular orientation, thereby several variants occur. In technical jargon, a distinction is made between a male -oriented, a position- oriented, and an option of a geospatial oriented space coverage.


In outnumbered zone defense is also practiced in hockey.