Archive for March, 2016

The Inexplicable: US Concedes to Guatemala 2-0

If you’ve been following on Twitter, everything will sound identical for the past 3 years.

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That said, here are 10 completely inexplicable things the US did last night that defy good coaching:

10) Edgar Castillo is an attack-minded leftback. DeAndre Yedlin has speed on the right. Geoff Cameron is your most trusted in possession at FB. Why keep Castillo flaring out if it will just open the middle? Why not counsel him to mind Carlos Ruiz a bit if you’re going up the right? Symmetrical, but unbalanced on the formation.

9) Being attack-minded (down two goals in the late second half) does not mean that you have to put on every attacking player in the world. It’s about where you have to play the game…in this case in your attacking third since Guatemala are now sitting deep…and where’s your advantage…in this case the flanks as Guatemala are…sitting deep.

So the incorrect sub is Jozy Altidore at this point for Omar Gonzalez. Not to mention that Gonzalez is better on set pieces and it tether Michael Bradley from making forward runs. But, hey, “ask the players.”

8) Asking Mix Diskerud to mark a seasoned central defender in Rafael Morales on the goal. There is Cameron, Orozco, Bradley, Wood, Dempsey who are all more capable of marking one of the better attackers in the air for Guatemala. (By the way, it was the 70′ mark when the same Morales pinged one off the cross bar on a header this time with Dempsey on him. Morales is decent in the air. You know this before going in. You tell people who to guard. MILK WAS A BAD CHOICE!)

7) Where is the US defender on the near post on that goal?

6) Shame on you Klinsmann. You had your OWN TAPE OF WHAT CARLOS RUIZ does. Here’s the US 3-1 win in Kansas City in October of 2012. Pay attention the early part of the tape with that Ruiz goal of course. (Look familiar. Like something you’ve seen recently?)

5) Playing players out of position. This is rote, but at some point Sunil or someone needs to rap Klinsmann on the hand and scream, “Stop that you little boy!” No? (Thank you kindly though for finally correcting that in the 60′ mark with Cameron to CB…WHERE HE BELONGS!)

Oh and we need Bradley in the deep role. If only for the defense, less his exquisite long diagonals.

4) Continued 0 (ZERO) pressing cues. One guy goes, the other guy…rests…thinks about. These are things that teams, especially national teams work on with the players in the right position…in order to have a defensive strategy on short notices. Like Concacaf qualifiers.

3) Something the US did early in the Klinsmann era–under Martin Vasquez no less–was keep their centerbacks tethered. This time with a new pairing and Tim Howard supposedly direct traffic time and time and time…and time and time again they continually got gapped. If the US CBs agree to stay tethered–if someone tells them at halftime–maybe a different story (0-0?) in this one.

2) Moises Hernandez, Guatemala’s young centerback, picks up an early yellow card in the first half and has a number of testy tackles, but you don’t go at him? Say…what?

1) Go find the 46′ mark of the 2nd half

Allow me to do some commentary here.

The US now has the ball in the back. They’ve got aways to go to get back on this game but it looks like they’re unsure what to do.

Wait?! Is that Orozco dribbling up from centerback what could he be doing?!

Oh please don’t do that Michael because Carlos Ruiz…like from before…he’s just waiting.  Orozco is almost at the halfline.

Stop that! Stop that! Someone make him stop. Someone on the US tackle him! Oh no! [sounds of cars crashing]

What in the world kind of pass is that?! That’s worse than Ruud Gullit trying to coach the Galaxy. That’s more cringeworthy than Steve Buscemi trying to hit on Olivia Wilde. Ew!

I mean I know no one was running because they didn’t expect him to have the ball there but still.

Oh no, there’s Carlos Ruiz, that spry AARP candidate. He’s sprinting. Oh no, right into the hole behind Orozco. Gonzalez, he doesn’t see this. Castillo sees it, but it’s too late.

[Ruiz cuts back to an incutting teammate who skies it over the bar with pressure from Cameron]

Catastrophe averted, until the final whistle.

One more… Restart defending (courtesy Matt Doyle here.)