Best 11 Right Now

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by LuckofLichaj, Oct 19, 2018.

  1. UncagedGorilla

    Sep 22, 2009
    Tulsa
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    American Samoa
    There's some revisionist history going on here. Roma was not a fan of Bradley by the end. I remember reading numerous pieces saying he didn't understand how to dictate the tempo of a game and passed backwards too often (sound familiar?). The year before he was sold they had a lot of injuries in the center mid so he got every opportunity to impress but they tried to play him in a more advanced role which we all know is not his strength. He didn't do well there so the next year when their players were healthy again, he was not a regular starter, rumors are he was a bit of a malcontent, so they were happy to sell him to Toronto who was willing to overpay to become relevant. Honestly, I wish he had taken the deal to Fulham who was the other rumored club interested at the time because he was fine at Chievo and in Germany, Roma was just too high a level for him and there's no shame in that. We have about three non-keepers in US soccer history who could start regularly at Roma.
     
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  2. rgli13

    rgli13 Member+

    Mar 23, 2005
    Memphis, Tn
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    in bradleys second season he did, in fact, play more than zero minutes. mea culpa.

    he was a bit player who got garbage minutes (in 11 of 23 games w roma that season) including being put in the shop window in dec & jan (the midfield injury list from that time period may interest you as well).

    academy players who get a token start on the last day of the season arent newly established starters and im not the one painting a picture with numbers here.
     
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  3. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    Is the Roma Bradley stuff taken care of yet? I'm more curious what you think the best XI is right now.

    For me:
    Altidore/Wood/Sargent (pick the two best in Form in time for the next friendlies)

    McKennie/Adams/Pomykal/Pulisic

    Gloster/JAB/Miazga or Long or Richards/Cannon or Dest or Yedlin

    I'm either/or'ing because honestly, in a lot of slots I'm not sold on a clear winner. LB could be Lima or Gloster. RB could best Dest, Cannon or Yedlin or Lima. CB could be JAB, Miazga, or Long or Richards or CCV or whomever.

    McKennie, Adams, Pomykal, Holmes, Pulisic, Arriola and Boyd all seem to be the top options for now, but the key thing to think about is this:

    Forward: It's do or die for Nova and Siebatcheu over the next 12 months or so. If no inroads happen for either I think Nova fades away and Siebatcheu's Hail Mary for the French National Team is the direction he goes.

    MF: You've got the guys that are obvious: McKennie, Adams, Pulisic, and the veteran obsessed continual use of Bradley. Then you've got Arriola and Boyd. Then you have the kids, Efrain Alvarez? Do you court him with a senior invite before Christmas? What about Llanez, Pomykal, Mendez, Taitague, Wright (I know, I know, I'm kinda kidding at this point, same for Taitague considering he spends more time in treatment than he does playing the game), Servania, Cerrillo, Ledezma and Reyna. You've got the limitations of the current midfield centrally, and on the wings, but there is a gigantic pile of options, and I didn't even mention Durkin, who doesn't belong, but seems to be guaranteed to be called in anyway this year or early '20. But when you look at those winger prospects (Llanez, Taitague, Reyna, Wright) at least one of them should probably come through before the end of '22, and I'd take Llanez over all the wingers we have right now other than Pulisic when it comes to a super sub to get a goal and possibly a starter. Centrally you have Pomykal, Ledezma, Cerrillo, Servania, and Durkin. Pomykal already seems ready, and Ledezma is the hope and prayer #10 who could change everything.

    In terms of defense, as someone else mentioned recently, we have Bello to go with Araujo, we have the disappointing Robinson, we have Dest, and Gloster all bubbling up. I kinda have the sense that even if we continue to struggle at RB/LB in '19, the answers will be in place by mid to late 2020, or the first half of '21 at the latest.

    I'm not so worried about the pool, I'm just worried about the guy evaluating it. For the time being he appears clueless. On the positive side, I think a lot of these players will make it damn difficult for him to continue to choose the wrong players over the next 12-18 months. That's my solace, by early to mid '21 it should be obvious that the current wingers and fullbacks he's using are the wrong one's, that his forward choices are poorly thought out, and that in central midfield, we have way too much talent to continually force Bradley into the lineup or even the 23. It's just gonna be a long 12-18 months waiting and hoping for these players to stay healthy and continue to develop.
     
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  4. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    taking the "right now" term literally, I would take Pomykal over McKennie because Pomykal's game is more mature and complete. We don't know - "right now" - if he has the athleticism/strength/speed to hang with seniors.

    This leads to an interesting question: Is Berhalter a slave to his system and unable to grab opportunity when he sees it because he has to follow his rules? I.o.w., is he a captain Queeg looking for "stolen" strawberries because he thinks a few strawberries are the difference between life and death on a warship. I suppose we will hear that Pomykal can't be summoned because he doesn't know the system.

    Before Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson in a Few Good Men there was Mel Ferrer and Bogart in Caine Mutiny.

     
  5. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Pomykal (whom I'm interested in seeing more of) is the latest in the long line of MLS players that are better than Weston.

    Did McKennie steal candy from you when you were a child?
     
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  6. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    No, he lost a tackle on LA Galaxy's dmid and failed to track him.
     
  7. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    If an episode of bad defense is a disqualifier from the USMNT, we will only have unborn children available to us.

    Why is it again that Weston and Pomykal can't play in front of Adams?
     
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  8. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    I think there is definitely an argument for Pomykal until McKennie can get these brain farts out of his game. It's one thing to just execute poorly in the moment (think Dest's horrendous defense of a header against Ukraine, a play he probably executed properly hundreds of times in training w/Ajax, but in the moment, at the worst possible time, he flubbed it in the worst possible way, and it's not a stretch to argue that in some ways, that mistake (along w/the horrendous defending of a corner by a different defender later) played the key role in us failing to win an U20 WC (the route Ukraine had, as a result of winning the group was infinitely easier than ours (Panama, Colombia, Italy, S. Korea, vs France, Ecuador, and what would have been S. Korea). Anyway, Pomykal just seems to be a baby Adams at this point, but w/a touch better passing in his game, and I'd have no problem pairing Adams with Pomykal over McKennie with Adams until McKennie gets greater consistency to his game.

    But I do wonder, is it possible to have a midfield of McKennie, Adams, Pomykal, Pulisic, and say Arriola or Boyd right now (Llanez replacing them a year from now hopefully). That midfield would be a dream to me w/plenty of defensive bite, plenty of offensive flair, and plenty of work rate in Adams, Pomykal, and Arriola (and McKennie who has the work rate, just needs to work on the mental side).

    I don't think there's any question that a midfield of:

    -------------------------------------------Pulisic-------------------------------------------------------

    -----------Pomykal----------------------------------------------------------------Arriola------------



    --------------------------------McKennie-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Adams---------------------------------

    Presents a helluvalot more possibilities than the Bradley/Trapp centered abominations we have seen during the first six or so months of the Berhalter regime. I don't like Pulisic centrally, but I don't know if Pomykal has the #10 skill set to justify him being there? Who to put there? I don't know. I'm fine w/switching the two of them, but the key to me is that a midfield where you get these five guys out there? The work rate would be absurd, the ball winning would be a dream, the bite would be exactly what was missing during the minute 50-75 hellscape of the Gold Cup Final....It's damn tempting, and if Pomykal can really bring forward his game in the final third, good lord, we could go from bottom feeder quality in early June 2019, to powerhouse by the end of the year, especially if we can get Forward and Fullback figured out.
     
  9. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    I don't think you can argue that McKennie has a more consistent quality to his play than Pomykal right now. Pomykal was a revelation as a 6/8 option in MLS and the U20 WC this year, he was the guy who inexplicably won that 50/50 ball (still trying to figure out how) that lead to the game winner against France in the Round of 16. Just take a look at that again. Wins a ball he shouldn't, really he has no business winning, then immediately makes the right pass that leads to the winner.

    McKennie right now has higher highs, but lower lows. I think in time they both will be starting in the midfield, but for now I'd start Pomykal for the consistency (though honestly, I'd start both of them, figuring Adams would probably clean up his messes).
     
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  10. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Well, at the moment we are playing Pulisic at the 10. We could conceivably play Weston but Arriola made such a good performance that I don't understand why we'd dump him and move Pulisic just so we could somehow, for reasons I just don't understand, fit Wes onto the starting xi.

    Why the panic? You seem to be on the warpath.
     
  11. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Pomykal has played exclusively against MLS speed players and u20s while McKennie plays comfortably at a B1 pace.

    We need more consistency from Weston but I wouldn’t be sure that pomykal will have that.
     
  12. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    Of course I do. But I don't see why we have to do it right now in the cycle and I don't see why we wouldn't want to have something more than defend and counterattack in the arsenal.
     
  13. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Warpath? I’m just pointing out your years long insistence that McKennie shouldn’t be on the USMNT.

    Remember Delgado>McKennie, Ralston > McKennie, McKennie is a defender and not a midfielder, etc.
     
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  14. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    The Hex starts in 14 months, correct? The more time we develop chemistry playing the best way, the better we will be. You can’t just turn it on even if you think that’s the way it works.
     
  15. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    We're practicing a press now. We still counterattack.

    When Steffen gets a goal kick (or Horvath or whomever), what do you want him to do with the ball?
     
  16. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    Did you watch the U20 WC? Just curious, not asking in a sarcastic manner, because if you did you'd know that the France team that he starred against, hell Ukraine as well, maybe Nigeria, I just don't know, all featured starters littered around Europe. He wasn't playing against MLS Mendoza Line level types, he was playing against studs. I'm not going to dig deep around the net to convince you, nor will my source material convince you, but I'll still list it, the MLS site gave Pomykal these ratings for the tournament:

    Vs Ukraine: 7 (called the best player on the field, only Servania equaled his 7)
    Vs Nigeria: 7 (only keeper Brady Scott, and Alex Mendez getting more love)
    Vs Qatar: DNP (Can't remember if it was a knock, or cards, kinda telling that it was our worst performance)
    Vs France: 7 (only Weah w/a higher rating, though they do say his play slipped after a knock before coming back late)
    Vs Ecuador: 5 (his one stinker)

    The Ecuador performance was concerning, but he played fantastic against Ukraine, Nigeria and France. That is definitely a tougher road to hoe than a typical week in MLS (especially France). He's legit, period. Still has work to do to improve, but right now he can step right into our lineup w/o a second thought, especially considering what we've started instead.

    Bear in mind, if it were my choice, I'd start him AND McKennie in a five man midfield w/Pulisic, Pomykal, and McKennie sharing distribution duties and w/no clear #10.
     
  17. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Didn’t we score vs. Chile or Venezuela off a direct pass from steffen?

    I want him to take whats obviously given. If they’re playing 30 yards off, then a pass to a back is fine. Other than that, I’d be more than comfortable with moving it to Jozy
     
  18. rgli13

    rgli13 Member+

    Mar 23, 2005
    Memphis, Tn
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    well, lucky for you ive written about 100,000 worlds on that in the last couple or three pages :rolleyes:
     
  19. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    I watched the Nigeria and France game. Thought he looked good but again it was a. U20 level (even though the CDs from France all play for their first teams).
     
  20. yurch10

    yurch10 Member+

    Feb 13, 2004
    I watched most of the U20 games, and seen random all-touch twitter videos, to think that Pomykal should be in our 23 definitely, and pushing real close to a starting spot.

    Certainly, he can't be pushing aside a Bundesliga starter, as we are far from the day where we can bench a BL starter (except Morales, he's a starter but not as good as Bradley).

    I think people like to poo-poo the U20 as some inferior youth tourney. I said it during the tourney (and got ridiculed for it), but I think France's U20 team would probably beat our A-team, or at least the "A team" that Egg is rolling out there. Showing up in a game like that proves a lot.

    I haven't watched a bunch of Dallas, but knew they had gone with their youth movement, and assumed they'd be struggling, building up to be good in a few years. But they're 5th in the west starting 4-5 teenagers. Pretty impressive.

    I would caution everyone, however, that these are all theoretical, as my predicted 23 for the next USMNT camp will be the 23 players we just saw, maybe with the 3 injured guys added instead of Omar and Lovitz.
     
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  21. rgli13

    rgli13 Member+

    Mar 23, 2005
    Memphis, Tn
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    o_O um, you see the problem with that statement, right?
     
  22. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    What players on our team are good at hold up play other than Jozy? Or are we relying on a 29 year old, oft injured forward who can't seemingly play 90 hard minutes in the Gold Cup?

    When a team takes this away by playing back, would you rather us be prepared and have a plan of attack to play out of the back or just make something up?

    We're not playing out of the back exclusively -- the team counters, plays direct and plays out of the back.

    I don't really understand why we want to limit our choices and make ourselves less effective.
     
  23. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    I literally said in the post you responded to that I’d take what they’d give us.

    I think that Jozy is our best but wood, Sargent, Nova and others can learn to be proficient.

    I’d trust their proficiency at hold up play way before our defenders at possession play under pressure.
     
  24. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    So if the defense stays back and gives us play out of the back, you'd play that way.

    But you don't want to practice it now or get better at it?
     
  25. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    I want us to play the way that we maximize our winning percentage. If they give us that pass, take it but don’t believe we have the ability to tiki taka our way out of trouble until we have all of our defenders in La Liga or equivalent playing that way.

    You do realize that our prior (and more successful teams) did actually pass the ball all while winning the gold cup and either coming in first or second place in the Hex, let alone not qualifying.
     

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