Eastern conference 1st Round Analysis (R)

Discussion in 'MLS: News & Analysis' started by JCUnited, Oct 26, 2003.

  1. JCUnited

    JCUnited Member

    Oct 7, 2002
    South Bend, IN
    Manchester United FC
    Wonder how others feel about these stats? Do they show anything? Are they useful?

    #1 Chicago Fire v. #4 DC United

    @ Chicago
    Fire 1 United 2
    Fire 3 United 1
    @ DC
    United 0 Fire 0
    United 2 Fire 0
    So United take the season series 2-1-1 and the aggregate goals for season 5-4
    Chicago failed to score at RFK this season. DC never held scoreless at Naperville this year.
    Fire will win, but it will be close. I see it decided at Soldier Field. United have played them very tough this year, and it could go to the mini-game.

    #2 New England Revolution v. #3 Metrostars

    @ New England
    Revs 3 Metros 3
    Revs 5 Metros 2
    @ Metrostars
    Metros 1 Revs 2
    Metros 1 Revs 2
    So Revs take the season series 3-1-0 and the aggregate goals for season 12-7
    INTERESTING FACT:Revs won both games at Giants Stadium and scored eight goals total at home (5 against Grafer though).
    Revolution will win, and probably easily. I see them taking both games, and the Metrostars stumbling out as they've finished the season: poorly.
  2. JCUnited

    JCUnited Member

    Oct 7, 2002
    South Bend, IN
    Manchester United FC
    I do think Chicago will then beat the Revs in the conference final, but it should be a good game if it happens. This season, Revs were able to beat Chicago twice (albeit at home) and get a draw at Naperville.
  3. FFan

    FFan New Member

    Oct 27, 1999
    Naperville, IL
    I think Fire will win or draw at DC and dismantle United at SF. I do not think it is going to be close at all.
    Fire will probably dominate first game but be unlucky in the goal-scoring department. United will score against the run of play. Fire will equalize late. In the second game, I see Fire outplay United and score at least 3, taking first round series.

    NY will advance over NE in second match up. Defense will be a key to winning that series and Metros can really tighten things up in the back if they get it organized. Look for two one goal games with NY taking advantage of counters and slowing the pace once they get a good result (Bob). It could get boring once NY scores first.

    Fire will beat NY at home and will move on to the final but not without suffering key injuries. I think either Ralph, Razov or Beasley will not make it to the final.

    I might be wrong but that is why they play the game.
  4. The DC - FIRE season series means squat come playoff time. Major changes ince the last time DC won on July 12th:

    1) Neither Ben Olsen or Ryan Futagaki will appear in this series.
    2) The FIRE, including US Open Cup matches against MLS sides has gone 12w-4t-2l since the middle of July.
    3) DC hasn't won in a month.

    DC will not score in this series.
    Game 1- DC 0 - FIRE 1 (Beasley 35)
    Game 2- FIRE 3 (Razov 40pk, Whitfield 59, Ralph 73) - DC 0 (Stoitchkov & Whitfield sent off at 66 min., Kovalenko sent off at 68 min.)
  5. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    as funny as this may seem, I have this strange feeling that REVS might find themselves in the final again. I fully expect both United and the Metros to get dismantled. The Metros have no confidence whatsoever going into the playoffs. They have gotten utterly SPANKED by the Revs this year, and they are coming in cold, with some dissention amongst their top players. I would be very surprised to see them win. As for DC, well, my squad is probably better off mentally than the Metros because the weight of not making the playoffs is finally off their shoulders HOWEVER, they are just going to run into a buzzsaw. Without Olsen, I just can't see them being competitive in the midfield. Revs vs. Fire at SF, and i just have a hunch ............
  6. Sanguine

    Sanguine Member

    Jul 4, 2003
    Reston, VA
    First round:

    Chicago over DC
    NE over Metro
    SJ over LA
    KC over Colorado


    NE over Chicago
    SJ over KC


    NE 3:1 SJ
  7. NotAbbott

    NotAbbott Member

    Oct 11, 1999
    My Own Little World
    Galin Ivanov was having trouble with CAREY TALLEY last night. I'm not exactly trembling in my boots as a Fire fan right now.

  8. The Artist

    The Artist Member+

    Mar 22, 1999
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I have very little hope of DC actually beating the Fire, but I am pretty sure they will not be dismantled. Though DC has played some horrific games they rarely lose by more than one goal. The DC defense has had no trouble with Razov and Ralph in previous meetings. Beasley, though, can run circles around our guys. The reason DC won't win is because they can't score. In order for DC to advance they need to shut the Fire out twice and probably find a kindly ref to grant us a PK. I'd guess a 0-0 draw in DC and a 2-1 win for the Fire at home.

    The Metros shouldn't even be in the playoffs with the number of times they've fallen behind and the way Mathis has played. But they always find a way to score when they need it. How can you bet against Bob Bradley's voodoo?
  9. Michael K.

    Michael K. Member

    Mar 3, 1999
    There or Thereabouts
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Overall against the Revolution, the Metros have lost 2 games that meant anything (in the regular season), tied one, and beat them in the one that meant the most (the USOC match). Saturday's game meant nothing - but you can keep telling yourself it did if it makes you feel better. In no rational person's mind is this a definition of getting 'spanked'.

    They aren't coming in blazing hot, but often that doesn't mean anything in the playoffs in any sport.

    As for dissension...you're speaking completely out of your ass on that one.
  10. Hoje

    Hoje New Member

    Jun 9, 2003
    New England over Metrostars (Metrostars actually have a small advantage playing away - see 2nd paragraph by The Artist, above)

    Chicago over DC (Chicago have a huge advantage when playing at home; the ratio of GF to GA at home (31/12) is the highest of any team this season)

    Chicago over NE
  11. The Magpie

    The Magpie Member

    Nov 19, 1998
    Cambridge, MA
    While I appreciate the unintentional humor provided through Metrofan hyperbole, he's right in suggesting that this won't be a cake-walk for the Revolution. While New England is enjoying a good bit of momentum, there's no telling how the series will go, especially with the series reduced to a home & away match-up. Whether Metro is genuinely banged-up or perhaps just playing possum, they are a dangerous team that can make you're life miserable in a hurry...

    ... and I was right miserable when the Revs' defense packed it in on 7/12 and allowed Metro to come back with three quick goals.

    Here's my effort at handicapping the series:

    2003 Results (home team listed last):

    7/12/03: Metros 3, Revs 3 (OT) - MLS
    8/27/03: Metros 2, Revs 1 (OT) - Open Cup
    9/13/03: Revs 2, Metros 1 - MLS
    10/18/03: Revs 2, Metros 1 - MLS
    10/25/03: Revs 5, Metros 2 - MLS

    New England has played Metro five times to this point, outscoring them on the season by a margin of 13 - 9. The Revolution have also out-shot the Metrostars, although by a much slimmer margin of 79 to 76, the Metros figure due in large part to their efforts in the August 27th Open Cup tie down at Rutgers.

    The dominant goal-scorer for New England in the season series has been rookie Pat Noonan, having scored 7 of his 10 overall goals against the Metrostars. The only other Revs scorer with more than one goal is Dario Fabbro with 2, while Steve Ralston, Jay Heaps, Taylor Twellman, and Joe-Max Moore have all scored once. Revolution goal distribution has come via a balanced use of the wing-play and service from the middle, but seemingly less from the mid-field than might be the result of close-in combination play. The Revolution have not been successful in trying to play the ball in deep from the backs and does not seem a likely tactic for the coming playoff series.

    In the case of Metro there hasn't been a dominant goal-scorer, with any number of different players finding the net (not counting an own goal credited to Daouda Kante). John Wolyniec, Ricardo Clark, Andrzej Juskowiak, Mark Lisi.... these players and more have all found the back of the net for Bob Bradley and Co. Distribution has likewise been provided through a combination of players, with Eddie Pope, Mark Lisi, and Amado Guevara sharing equally in their efforts. There have also been any number of individual efforts, something not enjoyed as frequently by New England.

    Metro has been most effective against the Revolution when using the counter - trying to split the seams between the outside backs , although any number of goals have come inside "the 18," balls getting lost in the scrum in front of goal.

    New England has been most effective in getting the ball in to the center of the pitch, their goals almost always coming from in between the 8 and 16, Noonan's body and ball control being an asset in tight quarters, further helped by supporting players in close proximity.

    Both defenses can be suspect. The Revs are vulnerable on the right flank to a degree: Heaps prone to push-up into mid-field and only to be caught out of position on the counter. Meanwhile, the Metros (especially Joey DiGiamarino) have often found difficulty in containing Brian Kamler and Steve Ralston out wide as they make angled runs towards goal.

    A strong game from Eddie Pope could give New England real problems, especially if he plays more as a man-marker on Noonan as opposed to a freer role in the center of defense.

    New England needs to keep mental mistakes in the back to a minimum, they need to keep their composure of they do make a mistake, and they have to keep their cool if Metro comes out looking to bait them into a silly card.

    For Metro to win this series they need to keep the Revs to one goal in game one at the Meadowlands.

    For the Revs to win they need to adjust should Metro shut down Noonan, and need to keep Metro out of the net at Foxboro, something they haven't found success in doing to this point.

    I'm an interested party so I make no prediction as to a score - not gonna tempt bad karma, but I will predict a closer series than most people are predicting.

    The Magpie
  12. Atouk

    Atouk BigSoccer Supporter

    DC United
    Apr 16, 2001
    Arlington, VA
    Queens Park Rangers FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'd guess there's a good shot you won't be seeing Ivanov next week (a 3-5-2 or even a 4-4-2 with Namoff in Ivanov's place would seem more likely for Saturday).

    That said, I'm not feeling good about our chances. We were clicking pretty well for awhile, but the Olsen & Rimando losses have really clipped our wings.

    I'd say Chicago gets what they need in the second leg after a first-leg draw and New England takes out the MetroStars after which the Fire advance to the Cup final with a home win over the Revs.
  13. Footer Phooter

    Jul 23, 2000
    Falls Church, VA

    Now in fairness to Mr. Talley, he also had problems with Eric Quill, Stephen Armstrong, and Preki.

    I don't think Ivanov sees any PT barring injury. (Man, I almost used the word "pitch")
  14. Autogolazo

    Autogolazo BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 19, 2000
    Bombay Beach, CA
    Lost in the meaningless contest yesterday at Crew Stadium was a classy performance by Bolanos, who seems like he could fit anywhere in A-mid or up top for the Fire.

    They just keep getting deeper with quality in attack(Bolanos, Jaqua and Williams could all be starting on other teams).

    Fire fans can book their tickets for LA.

    Maybe had Taylor still been healthy, the Revs would've had a chance, but Dario Fabbro and a past-his-prime Joe-Max won't get it done, even if Noonan is hot. I love the Revs, they're my team, and they're going to beat Metro, but Chicago has too many weapons...
  15. stinky

    stinky Member

    May 14, 2000
    Long Beach, NY
    when the metros played the revs in a game that mattered, they won.

    US Open Cup Q-Finals.

    Metros over Revs.

    DC over Fire.

    Metros over DC

    Metros Beat LA.

    please don't wake me.
  16. Hattrix

    Hattrix Member

    Sep 1, 2002
    You can keep trying to hit snooze, but this fantasy will have to end at some point. DC won't win another game til May.
  17. lufty

    lufty Member

    Aug 21, 2000
    You have got to be kidding me. zzzzzzzzzzz......
  18. RevsNumberONE

    RevsNumberONE New Member

    Oct 22, 2003
    New Jersey
    i like the way you think :)
  19. ProfZodiac

    ProfZodiac Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jan 17, 2003
    Boston, MA
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yeah, yeah, biased view here. But, oh well.

    Round 1:

    New England 3:2 Metrostars
    DC United 1:1 Chicago

    Round 2:

    New England 2:0 Metrostars
    DC United 0:1 Chicago

    Conference Final:

    New England 3:2 Chicago (OT)

    MLS Cup:

    New England 2:1 Colorado

    Now, do you want me to post again, being realistic? ;)
  20. paulocesar

    paulocesar Member

    Oct 4, 2000
    please, please....

    There is reality, ....and then, there is what league HQ wants. Thus;

    Chicago over DC, and Scum over Revs. Now, DC may have won the season series, but with no Ben Olsen, no offense, and no way Etch or Hristo have the legs to be more influential than the young guns of Chicago (Beasely and Ralph could sprint laps around the DC ol' timers), this home and away is not going to be even close.

    However, the Scum and Revs series is going to be extremely tight. With one caveat...the league wants the Scum to do well. So do not be surprised to get that one or two iffy calls that might result in a penalty or an ejection.

    Which brings me to Chicago-Scum. Its a one game conference final, so that means defense will be critical. And since the Scum are a better road team than at the Meadowlands (don't blame 'em...the place is a dump), again, a "funny" call from the ref could easily send this eternally loser like team amazingly into the final. Ahhhhhh the powers that be at MLS.

    Now the only thing I can't figure is who from the West does MLS want to prop up...LA, because they want a sell-out for the final, or SJ, so they can continue to promote Landon and justify an unreasonable price tag once Euro clubs come calling for him??!?!?!?
  21. BillQ

    BillQ New Member

    Oct 11, 1999
    Chicago, IL
    If Rimando was in goal for DC, I would be afraid, since he has owned the Fire the last three seasons. But, he isn't, so I say draw at RFK, Fire win at home to go through.

    Bill Q.

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