Coaching Philosophies and the Gregg Berhalter System

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by Susaeta, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. nobody

    nobody Member+

    Jun 20, 2000
    Are you actually arguing with yourself there or was that a posting error?
     
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  2. Pragidealist

    Pragidealist Member+

    Mar 3, 2010
    Ha! posting error

    But arguing with myself is definitely a possibility.
     
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  3. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    #103 Excellency, Mar 15, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
    This is astoundingly wrong and you know it. How many links did Prag provide yday to deep analysis of the dmid position. To me it looks like you are just intentionally irritating him so he gives up posting on grounds "it does nothing".

    the bait of "who are the players" is a common tactic around here to divert decent analysis into a food fight over leagues.
     
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  4. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    Well, yes, a pocket QB is essentially the analog of the deep-lying playmaker in soccer. A 'running QB' would be the attacking midfielder or the creative wide player.

    My contention is we have little quality in the way of pocket QBs.
     
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  5. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    You underestimate 4 because the dmid will come into possession of the ball in an area relatively deep in his own territory. His ability to pass long is related to his ability to take "out" opponents (get behind them) and his ability to pass to the touchline with accuracy while passing long is especially important because it means there is little chance of a counterattack quick up the middle.

    the main problem for trapp is 2 because he was playing with Berhalter at Crew and wasn't being asked to play at a higher level. He needs turns at bat to show he can hit major league pitching. He's getting those chances now. we have to have a back up for Adams in case Adams gets the starts anyway.

    My case is that there is a rationale for Trapp so far. It's premature to judge but we'll have it sorted by Gold Cup agw.
     
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  6. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    Honestly, I don't think it's any of that. I think it's "veteran talisman" b.s. He has already been quoted as emphasizing the importance of veterans and veteran leadership, regardless as to whether that leadership is actually helpful or deleterious (I don't know how anyone can argue, with a straight face, that Bradley's leadership is a key to anything positive after the '17 debacle). I'm firmly of the mind that:

    #1 He wants a leader, connected to the teams successes at WC '10 and '14, and Copa Centenario '16 in the team, and helping to marshall the youngsters forward into this next era, particularly considering how much of the '20-'26 iteration is made of kids bubbling up into the MNT over the past 2+ years and continuing to bubble up pretty consistently for several more based on youth results and developments with the MLS academies. I think he views Bradley as a key piece both in the room and on the field.

    #2 I think he erroneously believes that Bradley's will power can overcome his aging trajectory and collection of injuries over the past several years. Of course he's wrong about this, but he's gonna stubbornly stick to his guns for quite a while on it. I'm just praying it doesn't extend beyond 2020, 2019 is bad enough.

    I kinda think it's a pointless venture to find some glimmer of reason beyond these points, though maybe someone has one. Historically when sports teams turn to past it vets, it's as glue/locker room/chemistry/leadership/or a delusional belief that he still has it sorts of reasons. This situation seems no different to me and I think it's TOTALLY wrongheaded.
     
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  7. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    One of the best quarterbacks I've ever seen was Rutledge (NY Giants) but he couldn't pass long and coaches in NFL were all going towards "has to pass long" as the game kept evolving away from the running game and towards long passing. It was just too easy for the opponents to compress space when the qb could not pass long. In short, Adams' short passing game may make it look like he's an ace but he's making it harder for everybody else because they knkow he cant pass long so they just move up compressing space which also makes it easier to stop his dribble.

    I don't think your qb comparison will get you far. In fact, you are sinking rapidly.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Rutledge
    His finest moment as a professional player came when as a member of the Redskins he came off the bench in a game versus the Detroit Lions in 1990. Trailing 35-14 with 10:37 left in the third quarter Rutledge replaced an ineffective Stan Humphries and led a great comeback. He completed 30 of 42 passes for 363 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 12 yards for the game-tying touchdown with only 24 seconds remaining.
     
  8. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    You'd be better off, lol
     
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  9. Bob Morocco

    Bob Morocco Member+

    Aug 11, 2003
    Billings, MT
    Part of it is that having an impeccable buildup passer from that spot allows your team to put numbers ahead of it to pin the opposition defense and create numerical advantages in key areas. If that player has a limited range and vision then the defense could push up higher. So to play a field spreading, gap creating system it’s better to have a deepest midfielder who can hit the passes into the tight gaps or space the system creates.
     
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  10. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    How can I underestimate long passing when it’s one of the 6 criteria listed (and they’re not listed in order of importance)?

    In any event, in the last couple of games both MB and WT average only 1-2 successful long passes per game. I didn’t see a huge importance in these passes although I do recall that MB hit a beautiful ball up the left flank with a little backspin.
     
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  11. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    When playing as high up the field as Pep's teams do then the dmid becomes the enganche. The fullbacks become wide mids. A the a-mid can play as a [false] 9.
     
  12. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Fwiw, I think WT is a better alternative to MB at the 6 but they remind me of each other.

    There no way he’s better than TA, WM or Morales as DMs but if we have to have a regista, I can see how he should be one of those considered. If he’s the only one considered or the only competition is between him and MB, that’s disastrous.
     
  13. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Do you think we have players who are impeccable passers who can consistently hit the passes into tight gaps?
     
  14. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    We're not going to be playing as high up field as Pep's teams. The space won't be so confined. The passing won't need to be as impeccable as that of Pep's teams.
     
  15. Dutch Treat

    Dutch Treat Member

    May 6, 2005
    Amsterdam|Alphen a/d Rijn
    Club:
    AFC Ajax
    Nat'l Team:
    Netherlands
    SYSTEM-FIRST vs PLAYER-FIRST

    Don't they go hand in hand?

    If you don't have the players to execute your system, then what?
     
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  16. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

    Nov 4, 2011
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    #116 Excellency, Mar 15, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
    Didn't Will Trapp (it wasn't entirely clear to me) send a 40 yarder to Lewis for the assist Lewis got v. Costa Rica? Go to 52 sec mark (how irritating is the hi lite selection).



    edit: they make you view it on youtube. In any case, I went back to Fox Match pass and confirmed it was Trapp who took an errant short pass by the CR defender seeking to clear the ball out of the back (bad passing out of the back) and chested it down at the half way line, took a 5 yard touch and sent a beauty that landed just inside the box, taking out 6 Costa Ricans in the process, and setting up nicely for Lewis to get on the ball and cross it in for Lletget's header goal.

    it was vintage Will Trapp, par excellence
     
  17. olephill2

    olephill2 Member+

    Oct 6, 2006
    Oregon
    Club:
    Watford FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm keeping an open mind and willing to give Gregg Berhalter time to implement his vision and adjust as needed. I think he's the most tactically-astute USMNT coach we've had since Bob Bradley.

    That said, when I look at our current player pool, I'm not sure a possession-based system suits our players:
    • Christian Pulisic is not a possession player. He's most dangerous on the break and taking defenders on 1v1.
    • Neither Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie are cerebral passers or deft ball handlers (yet). They both share iron lungs and the ability to cover ground and disrupt plays. Adams is a better ball winner. McKennie is better at making the late run into the attack to contribute offensively.
    • Timothy Weah seems to be a pretty direct player. He has great ball skills, but he seems to be at his best playing at a fast pace in the attack.
    • Paul Arriola may be more of a depth piece for us rather than a starter (so I'm certainly not advocating that he's one of the centerpieces of our team), but he has lungs for days and a high work rate.
    When I look at our player pool, I wonder if a high-pressing, quick build-up / counterattacking style would best suit us, in some variation of a 4-3-3. Adams and McKennie can roam the field, press all day, break up plays and initiate attacks. Pulisic can receive the ball in transition and be direct attacking and get himself into 1v1 situations where he can create chances or score goals. Ditto for Timothy Weah in the other wide forward role. Our high-flying wingbacks in DeAndre Yedlin and Antonee Robinson can bomb up the touch line and provide width. A system like this would suit Bobby Wood's strengths today (and Josh Sargent as well, possibly). And while Jozy Altidore doesn't have the work rate to press which could be an inhibitor to employing a high-pressing style, he is good at quick combination play in the attack (look at all of his assists in 2017 -- that really is an underrated part of his game that's developed in the past few years).

    The players in our pool whose skills are better suited for a possession-oriented style of play -- like Darlington Nagbe, Emerson Hyndman, Gedion Zelalem, Wil Trapp, arguably Michael Bradley, Mix Diskerud, Paxton Pomykal -- either haven't broken through as national team caliber players (yet) or haven't proven to be enough of a difference maker at this stage that they're worth building the team around.

    To sum it up: I'm not convinced that a possession style, in which we try to keep a lot of the ball, plays to our strengths. I think our best players thrive in transition, and we have the horses in midfield to be able to press and force giveaways, in order to create those quick transition opportunities.
     
  18. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Apparently we’re not allowed to analyze our pool like this as Pragidealist has decided it’s a false premise to look at what style of play our core members actually use in their careers.

    Excellency also apparently agrees that an analysis like this is verboten because Prag posted links to articles where soccer writers lay out the same criticisms of Sarri and chelsea as many poster have laid out here.....
     
  19. Pragidealist

    Pragidealist Member+

    Mar 3, 2010
    And another poster bites the dust
     
  20. dlokteff

    dlokteff Member+

    Jan 22, 2002
    San Francisco, CA
    On the original premise of the thread, I much prefer the player-first approach.

    To me one of the most important parts of coaching is about getting the best from your best. That's what the best coaches do. Sometimes the player just isn't up to it (e.g. Clint Mathis) and you have to move on. But intentionally excluding high-end players to fill roles with lesser players is striving for mediocrity. Is it good enough to qualify out of CONACACAF?...it should be. But it's likely only to keep the USA treading as a second or third regional pony who gets whipped on the big stage.

    As for the specifics of Berhalter's "system" as described by @Pragidealist (which he did quite well earlier) I see the same issues as a few others have brought up. I know Prag thinks its' not an issue, but Tyler Adams isn't going to be able get high centrally and cover RB against elite - or even good - competition. The space will be exploited.
    • If the system is truly rigid, every manager knows ahead and will look to exploit it. That's a detriment to the system approach. Quick counters to the left wing will be plentiful.
    • It leaves the regista and the RCB to defend. Against Panama C and CR C it works. They rarely threaten and evene when they do, Zimmerman (or Long or Miazga, or one of the young CBs coming through) can deal with that. But they're not going to deal well with Chucky, let alone Hazard. They need help. Looking for help from Trapp or Bradley? Not likely to be very effective.
    • GGG's system (so far) isn't a 3-4-2-1 as described in the articles where the wings are also potential defenders that could help Adams out. His wingers are attackers. Baird and Ebbosisse weren't asked to defend (they didn't need to really). Ebobisse isn't anyone's idea of a wingback. He's a goal scorer/goal creator.
    The good thing about this though, is Berhalter is definitely devising a strategy that he thinks will work (of course whether it will....) with the pool in mind. It beats "express yourself", that's for sure. He didn't play with the "Lima Role" in Columbus to my knowledge. He didn't play with "two 10s" either. He looked at what he thinks is going to work here and is trying it out. It kind of does seem that the RB/CM role would be with Adam's in mind as speculated. It's kind of hard to imagine he's building his strategy around Nick Lima.

    The other thing with Berhalter is he seemed to get more out of his wingers that would be expected or that others did. Meram and Finlay are o.k. players. GGG got them to go on goal scoring binges that others did not.

    To me, if Pulisic doesn't play on the wing, it's a glaring weakness for the pool. I mean, would I trade today's Arriola and Baird for Meram and Finlay from four year's ago. Maybe. Perhaps GGG's got some secret wing sauce. He's going to need it if he's going to play this system.

    With all that said, my guess is Gregg isn't that tied to this exact system. I mean, I don't think he can be, because I really see us getting punked hard a few times and his job status getting threatened if he is.

    I think we might even see it with this camp.

    vs. Ecuador he uses Adams in the RB/CM role. Hopefully it goes well. If not, we (hopefully he) sees where the line is on the usefulness of the technique.

    vs. Chile, presumably a stronger opponent. Maybe Adams is a straight DM (with or without a dual). I think Adams is probably the only player right now who might be able to succeed in the regista role and still cover enough defensively against a decent side (which Chile likley will be...is there a roster out?)
     
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  21. yabo

    yabo Member+

    Jun 1, 2000
    Poolesville, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Use Man city as an example. Obviously the talent gap is huge, but the conceit is what I'm working with here. They play possession without their best possession type player, Kevin DeBruyner (sp?). They move the ball and play fast break because there are enough technical players and movement to make it unnecessary for one main ball circulator.
     
  22. TheHoustonHoyaFan

    Oct 14, 2011
    Houston
    Club:
    FC Schalke 04
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Replying here:

    I have a different take.

    I don't believe that Trapp and to some extent Bradley are there because their play reflect any specific on field slot that GB is trying to build around. IMO, Trapp and Bradley are culture/coachable/competitor picks. Remember this GB quote “The way I’m looking at it is we want guys that are committed to the team culture, understand the style of play and can compete. And regardless of age, of where they’re playing, we’ll look at them if they can fulfill those two requirements.”.

    Rosenberry and Acosta were sent home early from Cupcake. Canouse publicly said that he did not believe he got a fair shot to compete. Cannon expressed his difficulty playing the gimmick RB role and the GB emphasis on tactics over effort/grit.

    The "team culture" litmus test has been used in the past in sports to exclude and disadvantage certain players. I heard reports of small dust ups in the Sarachan camp between Pulisic/Adams /McKennie on one side and Sarachan/Trapp over the captaincy and perceived preferential treatment. Would Jermaine Jones or Clint Dempsey pass the litmus test? Those two were not crossword-puzzle-playing, we are all one big happy family cuddle bunnies.
     
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  23. Pragidealist

    Pragidealist Member+

    Mar 3, 2010
    I think the only thing that may counter that perspective is that several possession oriented coaches do depend on a possession oriented 6. The two obvious examples are Busquets and Jorginho. GB used Trapp similarly.

    Maybe you’re right but I think more is going on there. I think GB is a very tactical oriented coach and most decisions are tactics first.

    But I’m generally an optimist.
     
  24. Mahtzo1

    Mahtzo1 Member+

    Jan 15, 2007
    So Cal
    Is this something you read or something somebody told you? If it was someone who told you, was it someone that would have first hand knowledge? I have no knowledge one way or the other...this is not to discredit but to get a better feel for the report.
     
  25. ChrisSSBB

    ChrisSSBB Member+

    Jun 22, 2005
    NV
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Hard to picture 19 and 20 yr olds making a big deal around the captaincy no matter how good they are. Just don’t see it but maybe there is a story out there.
     
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