Camp Cupcake: Jan 2019 Edition

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by keller4president, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    #451 IndividualEleven, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Of the past 4 'A' team Gold Cups, we won two and lost two. Looks like we were pretty competitive in these.

    Morales played well for the US when he was played in his position.

    Danny Williams was excellent when played in his position, central midfield.

    Given the circumstances, Robinson has been solid for the team; he is not going to well defend when on an island against world class wingers, however.

    The team lost in TnT because Arena decided to use the same lineup and formation from 3 days earlier. Exhaustion, Omar Gonzalez, and little flank-defense on flanks killed the team.
     
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  2. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    You and I watch very different games then. When I watch both Morales and Williams in the majors, I see players who aren’t as skilled as their elite opponents: therefore, they play a safe defensive game where they were reliable in their positionally and via ball-winning play. Clearly not equal to the better opponents but reliable with few “oh crap” moments. At no point, did I see it where they were the worst player on their team and we’re clearlt getting subbed out (like Haji in his first game, which is understandable).

    Context matters: playing against top 100 and often top 30 teams makes players look worse than players who play against teams 200-300.

    In comparison, look at how Will Trapp looked defensively vs. Brazil as I recall a series of “oh crap” moments that showed he was out of his element. He likewise didn’t show the “creativity” you crave against top opponents.
     
  3. Suyuntuy

    Suyuntuy Member+

    Jul 16, 2007
    Vancouver, Canada
    And that's why I want to see them with the NT in games that matter.

    That a guy like Wright looks lost against a Top 100 team can mean either he's good but not that good, or that he's total trash.

    What irks me is people talking up players only based on the league and club they play. That's dumb. Watch them first.

    And there's a good reason why Morales and Williams are benched. If you think they're good enough for the international game, well, all I can say is, you don't know much about the sport.
     
  4. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    Williams has mostly been injured.

    Going on about how others talk up players based on club play then citing their club to support an argument against the players is somewhat shallow thinking.
     
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  5. Suyuntuy

    Suyuntuy Member+

    Jul 16, 2007
    Vancouver, Canada
    That's a solid point. Arena himself said he had not prepared for T&T. That's inexcusable.

    Mexico had not prepared either, and they took the brunt of the surprise: those first 70 minutes against the rejuvenated Trinidadians they were completely surprised. Layun and Salcedo looked slow, and they were lucky not to concede another one earlier.

    But then Horrible came and settled them down. They had the right guy: experienced, intelligent, and respected by the others. We didn't.
     
  6. juvechelsea

    juvechelsea Member+

    Feb 15, 2006
    That's kind of what I mean by "fanboy." Players at big clubs or in big leagues abroad get talked up. A lot of the ones talked up seem to be the ones who start or get called. And then there doesn't seem to be much attention paid to how they look on the field. To be fair, it extends to MLS and players like Trapp as well. U20 types who were supposed to be the future. This kind of snobby fanboy mentality. Keeper is about the only place where club doesn't seem to be everything, perhaps because we don't have anyone at a big club to prefer.

    We used to be above this. Jovan Kirovski and Kenny Cooper were just born in the wrong era. In their era if MLS or some guy at Fulham looked better, so what if you are ManU or Dortmund's asset. It might be impressive and get you a look, or maybe a tiebreaker for a bench spot at a world cup, but that was it. It was a foot in the door but the guys who produced played.

    You kept a role based on performance. Pulisic would still start then, but not the ones who trade off of looking important but then don't do anything in our colors.

    People used to understand not every U20 turns out. People used to hold players to performing. It's like now that there are people sprinkled all over Europe on purpose and not just a handful of American pros there, you're in the club. You wave your badge, you're through, no one checks whether you are playing well.

    The irony is that though we have expanded in terms of signing around the world, our actual competitiveness has fallen off. It's the worst time to be running on pecking order and not performance because we need optimization to compete. This is a top of the Hex mentality -- I can afford to play snob games and not run out my best and still beat you -- not a 5th place and missed Russia rationale. 5th place teams should be like, I will leave you curbside in a heartbeat if I can find someone who plays better and gets me to qualifying level.

    That plus the idea of keeping on older players who didn't qualify as "leaders" when they couldn't lead the last team before it. Or we can hire any old coach we have a good feeling about and ignore the numbers and trophy cases. These are dominant team luxuries. We are not a dominant team right now. Is there a point where we get back to a 90s or 00s mentality, get past the "but I wish we would play x style soccer," get back to fighting and clawing, leave soft players on the sideline, set club snobbery aside, etc.....just play ball with the best XI we can find in a formation that suits personnel and results as opposed to flatters what we wish we were?

    In a weird way it's ego run amok. People think because we have players in these leagues we are hot stuff. But I question whether any honest, tough minded coach looking at how we played ball in recent years would be pitching "possession," which to me feels like an ego idea. I think we won possession in 1 game since Portugal. And I can't imagine an outsider would be kissing up to Nagbe, Trapp, Zardes, Guzan, and a lot of the other players who were old enough to make the last team, and either did and didn't accomplish much, or didn't and that should be a red letter.

    It's all a little too clubby.
     
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  7. nobody

    nobody Member+

    Jun 20, 2000
    I get clubs make mistakes, but I think club matters every bit as much as watching because basically I feel most professional coaches and scouts who decide to spend real money on some players and not on others are better judges of talent than most of bigsoccer, myself included. It's kind of funny to me that bigsoccer posters watching on TV are supposed to trust their eyes, but throw out the fact that player A has risen much further up the food chain when judged by professionals with real skin in the game compared to player B.

    Sure, there are the odd exceptions here and there. Maybe we need a specific player type and don't have anyone playing at a higher level. Or, there is the guy with opportunities elsewhere that prefers to stay at a smaller club or league (yeah, I'm remembering Donovan). But those are the exceptions, not the norm.
     
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  8. nobody

    nobody Member+

    Jun 20, 2000
    That said, I'm talking about where guys actually play, not who owns their contract.
     
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  9. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Many of the above posts reassure me that I was correct in suggesting the way to build the team is to pick an all-MLS roster first, then fill in those you think can help us from Europe. Can Pulisic help us in GC? I guess that depends on your analysis of his situation with his club. Does it help us more to have him stay with club to get orientation and max p.t. on their summer Far East trip and agree with him that he come for Nations League games which matter more (?)

    That's just a thought experiment designed to show the kind of situation that is easier to deal with when the team is fundamentally an MLS team, even if more than half the starters in official games are Euro based, as might be expected.

    One thing we see is that there aren't any real natural 6's in Europe. Getting Canouse and Trapp ready to rock is all important and to that end we need to see Canouse partnered up with Roldan, Delgado, for a good amount of p.t. and I don't think Trapp has had much time with Roldan. In March I believe we play stateside and Canouse can get some time with Adams, Wes, Pulisic, Sargent or whoever makes the trip.

    The other two who need to get p.t. are Lima and Garza because they are good offensive threats wide who could be good against Concacaf in GC.
     
  10. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Would be good to see Polster in Jan camp if he doesn't sign with Rangers but Polster was invited to Ranger's training camp in Canary Islands so maybe he's still a go with Rangers. Hv to wonder how they evaluate him at current fitness level when he was out so much of last year.

    https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/sp...s-tenerife-training-trial-deal-transfer-news/

    boss Gerrard knows Polster well having played against him during his spell with LA Galaxy.

    It's believed Ibrox coaching staff were left hugely impressed with the versatile player, who can also play in defence.

    And that earned him an invite to the club's warm weather training camp in Tenerife.
     
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  11. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    How a player does in a US uniform should be the ultimate determinant of future minutes for that player.

    Last year was a throwaway year, so there is little point in crying over who did or didn't called up.

    Are we playing in Copa 2020? If so, we should go with an MLS-based team for the GC.
     
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  12. mike4066

    mike4066 Member+

    Jun 30, 2007
    Chula Vista, CA
    Club:
    Fulham FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Agree except your last point. The first GC is the more important one.
     
  13. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    There is nothing on the line in the GC. The comp will be much better in the Copa.
     
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  14. mike4066

    mike4066 Member+

    Jun 30, 2007
    Chula Vista, CA
    Club:
    Fulham FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    If we win we get a chance to play in the confed cup.
     
  15. mike4066

    mike4066 Member+

    Jun 30, 2007
    Chula Vista, CA
    Club:
    Fulham FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
  16. TrueCrew

    TrueCrew Member+

    Dec 22, 2003
    Columbus, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    We need to move to GC once every 4 years. If they keep it two, one should be virtually all domestic.
     
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  17. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    I'd like to GC kept at 2 tournaments per-cycle, but be all-domestic for both. Then the full-team would play in the Copa, which is switching to a quadrennial schedule.
     
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  18. Patrick167

    Patrick167 Member+

    Dortmund
    United States
    May 4, 2017
    One GC should be senior with winner going to CC. The other should be U23 with Olympic Qualification.
     
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  19. Paul Berry

    Paul Berry Member+

    Notts County and NYCFC
    England
    Apr 18, 2015
    Beacon NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    In that scenario the 2017 winners would go to the 2020 Olympics and the 2019 winners to the 2021 CC.
     
  20. Cannons

    Cannons Member+

    May 16, 2005
    I couldnt agree more. This is my biggest fear when GB was named. Then he calls in Trapp, Zardes and Bradley. Two are "clubby" one too old and not good enough anymore. An outsider would move past the above after one game and many of the pool that failed shortly after.
    Ernie has been a disappointment so far. Took too long to announce his pick and we wasted a year under Sarachan, then picked a guy that has basically accomplished nothing and never seriously even looked at anybody from outside. Cant wait to see what his team does and how they look and what he does with Bradley. For my money, even calling Bradley into camp was a mistake
     
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  21. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    Bradley is part of the establishment. If he chooses, he will always have some role in USSF/MLS.
     
  22. Editor In Chimp

    Editor In Chimp Member+

    Sep 7, 2008
    Which is an indictment in and of itself. You don’t see Steve McLaren involved in the FA setup.
     
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  23. juvechelsea

    juvechelsea Member+

    Feb 15, 2006
    I would not pursue a MLS-first strategy because part of the problem right now is that MLS' increasingly liberal foreign player rules are squeezing out domestic players and MLS right now seems more in the business of producing "good" as opposed to international-quality "great" domestic players. Too many Nagbes.

    What I would have done last year is basically run tryout type camps of new sets of players and see who stood out. Maybe more MLS and Mexico guys for home games, more European based for away games. Just practicality. Then come back this year and start gelling a unit of the ones who actually played well.

    If I were Berhalter I would announce to the fans that 2019 would be for that process, under his system. I don't think Sarachan's nonsense tactics and conservative personnel approach kicked the ball downfield much. What we really need to do is see how players look trying to do what Berhalter wants. That should be elevated above winning short term.

    I instead expect that starting in March we will run out a conventional wisdom 23 but then have to tear it back down and rebuild it later on as we see certain players have "Robinson Problems." I think it's dense because one value of a Berhalter is fresh eyes on the players in a new system. If you fast forward quickly to a perceived 23 then a Sarachan aftertaste will remain on the team. If we waited for a new year for a new coach why then run out most of Sarachan's team like he knew what he was doing. So reboot the whole thing at the risk of a year's results. Tell the fans the year for results will be 2020.
     
  24. juvechelsea

    juvechelsea Member+

    Feb 15, 2006
    It's only a throwaway year if Berhalter repeats the process of experimentation alongside system implementation. If Berhalter to start with runs with a 23 that Sarachan favored then the coaching was misdone but Sarachan's personnel preferences will implicitly carry over. If you literally want it to be a throwaway then the Amons and Holmeses and Olosundes and Parkers all need a fresh tryout in the new scheme alongside the favored sons like Pulisic and Steffen and Sarachan favorites like Miazga and Robinson.

    We are so used to continuity on this team that he will get little crap if he just picks 23 conventional wisdom guys in March. But it will implicitly act like Sarachan evaluated right, punished name brands who didn't perform, etc. That is the implication of being someone currently seen as a starter. is Sarachan liked you. There are a list of players he liked who are dubious. Nor did he run a consistent or attacking system upon which I can test whether he evaluated players for roles right. So to me for Berhalter to truly start fresh he needs to shuttle tryout players in and out for several months and see how they perform in his desired roles in his system.

    Cause to me I see a lot of waste coming if we just rotely run out the usual 23 to implement a possession scheme only to see that as in recent games it is not a possession unit, and to repeat the learning that players x, y, and z have a, b, and c flaws. it might be a faster route to some degree of results but we'll then be back to the problem Klinsi and Arena had with emphasizing playing to win where problem areas were not getting refilled right, we'd either use old players too long or just rotate around nonfunctional short lists of approved usual suspects. Cameron - Besler - Omar - etc. and if one screws up call another flawed guy off the same list. How are you really getting new ideas in if we're scared to see if a truly new player is what we need. And to me the reason you go back to the approved short list despite flaws it's the same arrogant pecking order mentality that "these are the ones who can play" even as your eyes suggest otherwise.
     

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