U.S. - Russia: Lessons

Discussion in 'USA Men' started by TheNearPost, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. TheNearPost

    TheNearPost Member+

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    Goodson can't be a starter in the backline/We're in deep doodoo in the centerback zone - While we saw a pretty sterling effort from Geoff Cameron, there wasn't much good news from that area. Carlos Bocanegra went down with an injury, and Clarence Goodson made poor decision after poor decision in his time on the field, with and without the ball. The January friendlies/camp is the next get together for the U.S. before the Hexagonal, I believe, and Juergen is going to have to keep a close eye on who impresses there.

    Jones and Bradley don't look like they can be in any kind of midfield set up together - At all. Individually, I would never think of calling either of these guys anything but top-notch players, and Jermaine Jones probably wasn't as bad as many fans ( including myself) will say he was this game. However, we're not going to generate anything offensively with these two next to one another in the midfield. No, neither of these guys are defensive midfielders, but putting them together is not enough to generate an attacking threat, at least in a 4-3-3/4-1-4-1 ahead of an actual defensive midfielder. For the moment, it seems best to have one (most likely Bradley) in front of someone like Danny Williams or Maurice Edu ( I'll get to that in a second) and next to/behind someone with more guile like Mikkel Diskerud (he's in here too, hold on ;) ), at least if you're planning on playing a 4-3-3/4-1-4-1. For the moment, Jones is a lovely option off the bench that can play plenty of positions.

    Maurice Edu *inserts foot in mouth* - The guy had a good appearance. What else can I say? He looked sharp with the ball. Over dribbled/over-thought in some bad areas a few times, but he had a hand in the goal and did more than his part defensively. However, this isn't a full concession on my beliefs on Edu. I still think it was silly to ever have Mo as a #8, where Bradley and/or Jones were today. He's delivered some great performances as a defensive midfielder, however, and he should play no deeper or higher up the pitch than that exact spot it seems. I've always been okay with that.

    Mikkel Diskerud *grins wryly* - I've been calling for the kid for a while now, and he finally got his chance. This is only his third cap, and he was once again involved in some late game craziness, scoring the equalizer in the dying minutes. I still think he should have been brought on much earlier. Hell, I would have started the kid if I had my say. If the USA is going to continue playing a 4-3-3, then he's a good option as the most attacking of the central trio, just ahead/next to Michael Bradley.

    Jozy Altidore -
    Tough to judge here. He once again lacked any kind of service for a pretty significant chunk of the match. However, he didn't do a lot to cover himself in glory when he did get for a brief while, although he did set up Jermaine Jones with a good run and cutback that should have at least been placed on target. He needs to be seen with a full-strength U.S. side. in order for us to truly know if he can translate his club goals into something for country, and for us to know Juergen's plans with him.

    Other little things - Sacha Kljestan had another good performance. Can't see why he doesn't get a guarenteed role on the bench for the U.S. in the Hexagonal. Timothy Chandler looked good coming up the flank. Fabian Johnson looked fairly active going forward too, but he's still a little suspect defensively. Welcome back Juan Agudelo. He'll still need to work at Chivas USA, but it's nice to know he's got his head in the game (even with that mohawk...). Terrance Boyd was also involved in the second goal in his short time on the field. So long as he continues working hard over at Vienna, he'll keep getting looks and keep building for the future.
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  2. Spursfan1

    Spursfan1 Member+

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    Rumor has it he wasnt going to be called up but Gonzo was but LA made it to the semi finals.

    bad luck.
  3. Foolishness

    Foolishness Member

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    Thought Jozy should've done better with the ball in from FJ but other than that I thought Jozy was fantastic. Especially in linking up with other people. He was all over the field in the first half and still giving a good hustle in the second. I don't expect him to score every game so I'm not disappointed with him today.

    We need a CB, praise God for Cameron, the guy gets better every game.

    I was shocked to see Agudelo come in over Boyd but holy shit did he earn his time. I still think there's better options than him but he's earned another look in the near future. I'll hand it to JK for once again making a wild, controversial call up, and having it immediately payoff.

    Oh and Jones. I'll never understand people's criticism of him. I thought he was the most consistent player today. He made great runs and amazing passes. He was all over the field and, aside from Bradley in the second half, was the only one to par up with the Russians. Aside from skying that Jozy ball over the net I thought he was our best player.

    There was a huge chemistry issue and a bunch of random things in this game. So many short tap-passes were way short, hit with no confidence and broke up the play near the box. So many passes in the first part of the game were lightning quick and would blast off our players.

    I'll forgive DW today. I'm not sure why he had such an awful game. Maybe didn't get over that huge ******** up that lead to the goal but as he gets older and more mature things like that shouldn't linger.
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  4. Bruce S

    Bruce S Member+

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    I thought he was fairly poor. You could hardly tell he was on the field.


  5. ChambersWI

    ChambersWI Member

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    Funny enough, I thought he was our most inconsistent. His good was really good and his bad made him a liability. First half was the best I've seen him play for the US since his first cap. But second half... man was he bad most of the time.
  6. TheNearPost

    TheNearPost Member+

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    Yeah I wouldn't call him fantastic like the initial poster did, but I thought He did good enough with what he had. Still has too many "WTF was that, again?" moments. One instance that sticks in my mind is when Bradley charged up the field and stripped a Russian of the ball quite well, then layed it off to Altidore. Jozy then played a left-footed pass way behind his man ( I can't remember immediately who it was, might have been Kljestan), and thus, the counter was over.

    Again, he got crap for service for a while, so I'm not too disappointed he didn't look like a world beater.
  7. Foolishness

    Foolishness Member

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    Ya, I recall that sequence. Really not sure what happened there. Not to excuse/condone but that happened quite a lot today.
  8. Spursfan1

    Spursfan1 Member+

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    Thought jozy had an excellent first half. one of the best he has had in a while. he dropped off in the second half while bradley just took the game over. amazing player.
  9. Chance

    Chance Member+

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    Why are people ignoring Jozy's work-rate? He basically had zero service and he botched the one chance with a bad touch but the dude was working his ass off and tracking back defensively.
  10. Foolishness

    Foolishness Member

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    I don't know, perhaps we see what we want to see.

    I thought he really turned it on in the second half. He was really our only support on the left of the pitch without really any support. Felt like he was a one man show many times today.
  11. Foolishness

    Foolishness Member

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    He was all over the field in the first half and still giving a good hustle in the second.

    a few posts above you.
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  12. Chance

    Chance Member+

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    I was mostly referring to Bruce's post.
  13. TheNearPost

    TheNearPost Member+

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    I'd also like to add to my initial post that I was really disappointed in the initial starting lineup. I really don't know what Juergen expected when he put Jones and Bradley next to one another in the midfield again. It's really not surprising the U.S. did so poorly offensively when they lacked a genuinely creative presence in the midfield. Who were they supposed to turn to? When you talk about being proactive and getting more possession, you need someone out there who can not just generate possession, because Bradley and Jones can generate possession, but also generate chances and pull the strings in the final third.
  14. TheNearPost

    TheNearPost Member+

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    I agree with posters saying Jones had a good second half, though. He played better overall, but he's still not the kind of player we need. If we've already got Bradley and Williams/Edu in the midfield, then it's just not enough to have another box-to-box midfielder in the central midfield. Again, the starting lineup looked like something a counter-attacking coach would put out.
  15. Maximum Optimal

    Maximum Optimal Member

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    I like the points made about Mix in the initial post. I think in a three man midfield he might complement Bradley and Williams better than Jones. He has more creativity in the final third than Jones, something this team needs.

    It seems heretical to bench Jones for Mix, but if you look at it from a team perspective Mix is probably the better fit.
  16. Clint Eastwood

    Clint Eastwood Member+

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    At home Klinsmann might do something like this with Mix, Zusi, etc. in qualifying.

    On the road in a hostile environment like Russia...........................he went with a more defensive posture to start with. Then he adjusted as the game went on.

    [And we're playing a lot of friendlies now in places like Mexico, Italy, etc. Fewer cupcakes...................]
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  17. sXeWesley

    sXeWesley Member

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    I feel like I have been saying this for months now, because I have, but Jones is an awesome player and needs to play the 6 instead of guys like Williams, Edu, Beckerman, etc.

    Whatever the reason Bradley and JK have had for never playing him there, it needs to end now. Put Jones at the 6, Williams on the bench and Mix at the spot Jones previously occupied = instantly better team in all phases.
  18. DearGodNotBornstein

    DearGodNotBornstein Member

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    Eh, against a team as good as Russia away from home, I can see a starting midfield trio of Bradley, Jones, and Williams. Against some CONCACAF teams at home I would like to see how A midfield trio of Bradley, Jones, and a creative type do. Bradley and Jones can alternate sitting back (we shouldn't need a true 6).
  19. john3628

    john3628 Member+

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    The results from Olympic Qualifying are now irrelevant.
  20. Bookmesir

    Bookmesir Member

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    Jones is an enigma. His histrionics whenever fouled or having just tangled and fouled an opponent and finds himself on the turf are extremely bush. He is, yet, a dynamic player at given moments. He often cancels out his positive play with a cheap foul, an excessive but discrete elbow here and there (mostly to the face of the nearest opponent). He is all over the place, attacking on the flanks better than anyone else (today, at least), but seems a liability because he is a foul machine. Obviously, JK loves him and recognizes the need for his skill set, including his harsh physicality. He is a destroyer defensively, but not always in the way that benefits this team. Overall, he imposes himself on the game. Not many other US Nats can say the same.
    Bradley has developed into the real deal, a monster. He's got vision, tenacity and took his goal at a world class level.
    The reality is we were facing Russia. They were clearly better in transition, possession and in creating chances with numbers going forward.
    We still piss the ball away far too frequently under no pressure, which is unaccountable, unnerving and a tendency we will have to eliminate if we want to get to the next level as a national side.
    The tie was an extremely flattering result against a very good team away from home. Somehow, through all the mistakes and flaws, we got a result. Its got to make the flights back home, and to the various club team sites abroad, a sweet one for our boys.
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  21. El Michael

    El Michael Member

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    Just a thought but if Stu can make it back i think he could be the missing piece to having a cohesive midfield
  22. freisland

    freisland Member+

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    Yeah, there was a point around 80 or so, russia had a good build up, were looking to drop to a shooter at about the 30 and Jozy trucked back, broke up the play, started the counter and then popped up on the 6 a minute or so later just not quite getting to a so-so cross. that was a box to box and back run late in the game and he was on it - his pass to jones was good work on the right as well. I only saw the 2nd half, but he was certainly working if nothing else.
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  23. FirstStar

    FirstStar Hustlin' for the USA

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    Give it up- he ain't coming back like he was. The odds are too long against it.
  24. FirstStar

    FirstStar Hustlin' for the USA

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    Edu needs to be left off the team until he starts playing soccer for a living again. This game showed why he can still help (good work rate and excellent pass for the first goal) but he played the Russians on-side for their second goal. He is not sharp enough right now and that's only going to get worse.
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  25. yankeeRoyal

    yankeeRoyal Member+

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    Lesson 1: The german/americans are not significantly better than their backups.......even Fabian had some bad plays.
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