Fighting Confirmation Bias

Discussion in 'USA Men' started by DHC1, Sep 11, 2018.

  1. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    #1 DHC1, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
    I'd thought I'd start a thread where frequent posters can list where they've changed their USMNT minds. I know that many, certainly myself, get stuck into a view and have a hard time adjusting off of that view. I wanted to provide a place where posters can highlight areas where our thinking has changed.

    For me, about 10 years ago, a poster (I think it was cleansheetbsc but that's a foggy memory) pointed out that I would rate B2/Championship players for simply being on the roster while demanding that MLS players dominate their league. My hypocrisy was laid out pretty clearly for me and I've strove to not get focused on old world soccer being better across the board. MLS is roughly equivalent to many European leagues including B2 (all are minor leagues compared to the Big 4/5, with some individual team exceptions....) so why treat them any differently?

    I also was a big believer in MB and really thought that the move back to MLS in his absolute prime would be beneficial for both him and the USMNT for two cycles at least as he was exactly the type of leader who would really benefit from being "the man."

    I also thought that hiring Bruce was a no-brainer and we would qualify handily as Arena would make sure that everyone knew what their role on the pitch was.

    Mea culpa and I'll try to think of some more on my side.
     
  2. An Unpaved Road

    An Unpaved Road Member+

    Mar 22, 2006
    Club:
    --other--
    - Back when Adu was in the middle of all those Euro loans where he wasn't playing I still thought he would be a notable NT player (not a superstar but good enough to be a regular).

    - Relatively early in Klinsmann's reign I predicted he would be replaced by Arena during qualifying for the 2014 World Cup.

    - I didn't think Dempsey's NT form would hold up for so long after moving to the Sounders.
     
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  3. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Oh yeah, I was on the Adu bandwagon for a long long time.
     
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  4. TOAzer

    TOAzer Member+

    The Man With No Club
    May 29, 2016
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I long held out hope that Adu would make his mark, well past his sell by date. For example, I was upset at Benfica's non-use of him and believed that maybe Monaco would make the difference. Even as late as his time at Aris I thought he was redeemable. Silly me.
    I thought Arena was still capable of learning, and that his terrible missteps with the Galaxy in his last year and a half and brought him perspective and humility. Wishful thinking for sure, and he proceeded to blunder T&T away. But then I still thought he would have the character to own up to his responsibility, and would assess honestly his role in the disaster. Well, not a chance, eh? An old dog may learn a new trick, but apparently not an old mangy dog.
    In a longer view, I thought that the talent we had flourishing in the period 2000-2006, which included so many creative and skilled players [O'Brien, Mathis, Donovan, Reyna, young Dempsey, for examples] indicated a new understanding among the managers and developers of talent, in this country, as to the importance of moving past the old reliance on size and speed being primary for a player.................. Wow, was I wrong on this one. The primacy of size and speed, over talent, still runs rampant throughout all levels of the sport in this country today.
     
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  5. skim172

    skim172 Member+

    Feb 20, 2013
    When Bruce Arena was first hired, I thought it was a mistake. Because I thought he'd act like a nativist xenophobe on a crusade to purge the team of all foreign influence (including guys like Pulisic). That was stupid and I realized that quickly - but I retained my opinion of Bruce for no other reason than not wanting to be wrong.

    But he won me over. He kept getting results. And eventually, I had to admit: I was wrong. Bruce was the right coach. Because he'd brought the team together, because he got them to play for him. He was the coach the MNT needed. He would lead this team to the World Cup ... and the way they're playing for him, maybe beyond the Round of 16, even.

    :(
     
  6. Eleven Bravo

    Eleven Bravo Member+

    Atlanta United
    United States
    Jul 3, 2004
    SC
    Club:
    Atlanta Silverbacks
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I wouldn’t call that “hypocrisy”... I’d say that’s just a point of view you held and noticed a different point of view! I’d call that “growth”.

    That said, I’d say times I know I’ve been wrong....

    I really expected Kyle Beckerman and Omar Gonzalez to sink the ship in 2014, and both had a great tournament. Although, we know what happened with Gonzalez in the 2018 cycle, although I believe that’s harsh to blame it all on him. Another player, I thought, oh shit, and had a good tournament in 2010, was Jonathan Bornstein.

    On the flip side, I really believed Michael Bradley would have made an excellent captain, but history will prove he will go down as one of the worst in history.

    Also, I went against my reservations to say Klinsmann should keep his job after WC 2014, despite the fact I believe coaches should be let go after the cycle regardless of performance due to the fact they over rely on their old timers.

    ...I’m sure I can think of others, but those are the first ones that pop in my head that I’ve had to eat some crow.
     
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  7. skim172

    skim172 Member+

    Feb 20, 2013
    I thought Brek Shea would be a revelation. I thought Josh Gatt would set the world on fire. I thought Aron Johannson would be the answer.

    I thought no one would ever be able to say "the New York Red Bulls" with a straight face.
     
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  8. An Unpaved Road

    An Unpaved Road Member+

    Mar 22, 2006
    Club:
    --other--
    - I didn't think the U.S. would have a good Copa America Centenario (double whammy--I picked Mexico to win it).

    - I thought Edu would go down as a big time NT guy similar to how Jermaine Jones ended up.

    - When I saw Wondo load up for the shot against Belgium for that split second I was certain it would hit the back of the net. :p
     
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  9. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Kyle Beckerman and Edson Buddle. The first, I thought was going to flop when I saw him first being thrown into the US lineup. He did not. The 2nd, I thought would push himself into the US squad and be a 50-70 cap guy that regularly scored off passes from Landon Donovan. He did not. Oops.
     
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  10. ussoccer97531

    ussoccer97531 Member+

    Oct 12, 2012
    Club:
    --other--
    Beckerman. Completely whiffed on that one. He was very good during the 2014 WC.

    D. Acosta. Looked like one of the worst youth players I had watched for our YNT's. I constantly questioned why Ramos was such a big fan of his game. I don't think my assessment was wrong on his play at the time. Credit where its due though. The guy has improved a lot, and is arguably the most underrated player in our player pool.

    Altidore. I thought he was going to turn into a regular at a good team in Europe, but that never happened. I did say that I thought signing with Sunderland was going to be bad for his career, but I didn't think he'd do as poorly with them as he did.

    I don't think I thought it was a real concern whether we'd make or miss the World Cup. I said a number of times that we'd get one of the last places in that tournament, but I didn't think we'd miss the tournament.
     
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  11. Golazo69

    Golazo69 Member

    Aug 2, 2017
    Idk if it makes sense for you to post in this thread, you don’t change your mind on players lol, you attempt to change reality so that it fits into the parameters of your viewpoint
     
  12. Gamecock14

    Gamecock14 Member+

    May 27, 2010
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    I don't know if it is really "confirmation bias", but a lot of these "predictions" are dependent on injuries, manager preferences, club situations, playing time, personal problems, form at a given time, etc.

    A player can go to a club that is in a bad spot and get playing time, he then loses his spot due to his form, a new coach comes and isolates him, and the player loses confidence. Some players never recover or never recover to the same point they were before the move. Similar things happen with injury.

    The bias is more about doubling down on a position rather than just moving on. (Particularly when with the exception of a few posters, no one knows their real identity.)
     
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  13. jond

    jond Member+

    Sep 28, 2010
    Club:
    Levski Sofia
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I thought the Brekken might one day be a UCL level player. I also once thought Agudelo would be a legit top 4 league starting striker.

    The lesson I learned is this: Observing a player from the outside is one factor. We can assess quality and trajectory. What we have little to no insight into is what's between the ears. Motivation, IQ, adaptability and general hunger to rise to the top.

    The Shea and Agudelo cupcakes were soft. So now while I discuss youth trajectory, I don't anoint anything until a player is actually in a top league, handling the daily grind and locking down mins. As many simply can't handle that environment and challenge.

    Adams strikes me as someone who has the mentality to do well in the Buuuuuundesliga.
     
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  14. truefan420

    truefan420 Member+

    May 30, 2010
    oakland
    Club:
    Chelsea FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Don't give up on him just yet. He's got the talent just can't stay healthy.
     
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  15. leppercut

    leppercut Member+

    Oct 10, 2006
    SLC and Anchorage
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    On Edson, I still remember how good he looked vs Australia before the 2010 WC started and thought he and Jozy could be as good as Charlie and Jozy.
    I still think he would have done better than Robbie Findley.
     
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  16. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Apologies for singling you out and you’re welcome to ignore but what would it take for Agudelo to fall into this category for you?
     
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  17. ttrevett

    ttrevett Member+

    Apr 2, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Probably for Agudelo himself to come out and say, "You know, I'm really not that good at soccer." Even then one can imagine the poster doubling down and considering himself or herself (I am not having a go here, I truly don't know the gender of that poster) a better judge than the player himself.
     
  18. ttrevett

    ttrevett Member+

    Apr 2, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I was of the opinion that soccer in Atlanta would never take hold. I do still wonder a bit what will happen, once Tata, Martinez and Almiron leave and the team goes through a rough patch of years a la DCU.
     
  19. ussoccer97531

    ussoccer97531 Member+

    Oct 12, 2012
    Club:
    --other--
    I feel bad for people like you. I hope you are able to make improvements in your life that clearly are needed. Good luck.
     
  20. DHC1

    DHC1 Member+

    Jun 3, 2002
    NYC
    Unfair hot-take that's antithetical to the whole reason for this thread and likely to cause posters to dig into positions beyond what they normally would. BS is a place designed for posters to advocate strongly for players and IMO this thread allows them to do that and still issue mea culpas. I asked the question to gain nuance as opposed to taking an opportunity to throw tomatoes.
     
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  21. MPNumber9

    MPNumber9 Member+

    Oct 10, 2010
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I thought Morris and Zardes would be good torch-bearers from the "lost" generation. Both felt like bread-and-butter US players who could grow into key players for the NT: a solid technical base, great athleticism and both have been influential in making title runs for their clubs (they also combined to score the winner in the Gold Cup Final). Injuries and missing out on the WC has complicated their paths, unfortunately.
     
  22. manfromgallifrey91

    Swansea City
    United States
    Jul 24, 2015
    Wyoming, USA
    Club:
    Southampton FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I thought Bruce Arena was the right hire for the cycle and that after the WC we would have had a perm coach in place, maybe even before it.

    I believed in countless youth players who fizzled out, and when Zelalem picked the US I thought he would be an integral part of the US set up.
     
  23. ttrevett

    ttrevett Member+

    Apr 2, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Fair point, I made that post at the end of the work day and was pretty salty by then.
     
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  24. cleansheetbsc

    cleansheetbsc Member+

    Mar 17, 2004
    Club:
    --other--
    Here is the sad part - Agudelo IS really good at soccer, but even really on, Henry, Ream, and Jeez, Jozy Altidore all sent out early warning signs that the dude just does not want to work hard.

    He is wasted talent more than anything.
     
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  25. cleansheetbsc

    cleansheetbsc Member+

    Mar 17, 2004
    Club:
    --other--
    Right or wrong, he was really the only coach to turn to in that situation.

    I watch a lot of people do this on these boards. All those people that call for the latest youth player to jump to a Euro academy to be fast tracked.

    I used to do this in my fantasy baseball drafts back in the early 1990's (back when we compiled the scores from USA Today and Sporting News into Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheets), I was always taking the hot prospects a year or two too soon.

    Its really hard to have patience.
     

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