Getting back to #1

Discussion in 'USA Women: News and Analysis' started by Jumbo1, Oct 9, 2003.

  1. Jumbo1

    Jumbo1 Member

    Feb 19, 2000
    OK, the Germany vs US thread was getting to long.

    How does the US get back to #1?

    I will start with two, I think need to be addressed

    1) Player Identification - We need to get the top performing players from whatever replaces the WUSA, or women playing in professional leagues. These players need to play in friendlies, and other competitions. Keep calling back the ones that do well, and show promise. This will include the veteran players, but there is certainly no need to callin a Mia Hamm, or Brianna scurry for every match. Model this on the mens programs around the world...see Bruce Arena's example here in the US.
    Additionally, we need to stop slanting our identification of players to the fast and tall players. You need that as a base, but we need more soccer savy players. We need players that can create goals, or chances. More tactically aware players!

    2) Coaching - we need to demand that we have top coaches in the program. I know a coach does not develop players on the professioanl level, as much as manage them. Maybe April will have learned some lessons from this WWC. Maybe, as some have said, her hands were essentially tied, by veterans of the psat WWC team. I am not sure of the inner workings of this team, and if she felt she could cut anyone she needed to, or if only certain fringe players could be cut. The US looked tactically naive, and the 2 goals from the run-of -play was a huge red flag. We have beat this one over the head, but a change in tactics was in order, rater than ball after ball flighted into the box.
  2. Elroy

    Elroy New Member

    Jul 26, 2001
    Think outside the box.

    I like your ideas. I think that we need to broaden the perspective concerning player development. The Fed really needs to do some serious research about how the rest of the world develops players. Our problem is not that we lost a match, rather it is the structural problems that exist within our program. We have the broadest base of female players in the world, yet we really don't use it.
  3. Kqql

    Kqql Member

    Sep 22, 2003
    Hire a REAL coach first !
  4. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    Sven Goran Errikson or Sir Alex Ferguson
  5. Jumbo1

    Jumbo1 Member

    Feb 19, 2000
    I have stated this on another thread, but we need a coach that will play the top players in the WUSA2, or whatever leagues we find the best players. The mens formula around the world needs to be followed. We can't keep playing people on their names, alone. We will never know what talent we have, if we don't make use of it in friendlies, and tournements. We will be stuck with the same old players, and a trickle of younger players. A residency program like the women had before, will ultimately set us back. Players need to be playing matches week in and week out in a competitive league. Michelle Akers, as great a player as there has been in the womens game, metioned a grueling schedule in the WUSA as a factor in the US performance...are you kidding!?

    College soccer...this is a whole other topic, but more on that some other time. I think it sets back lots of women. Culturally, I don't think there is much that can be done, as men/women in this country value education, and most will not be playing professionally. Maybe the top players can bypass college soccer, but there would have to be finacial incentive to pay for the trade off.
  6. MichaelR

    MichaelR New Member

    Jun 12, 2003
    Recovery begins with replacing April.

    The second step is to retool the offensive tactics to take full advantage of the team's emerging leaders, Wambach, Wagner and Boxx (Note: April seemed to have no idea of what Abby and Boxxy could do until the eve of the WWC). By all means take advantage of Aly Wagner's playmaking skills. In other words, you don't need to play kick-and-run to take advantage of Wambach. (It wasn't such a great strategy in the WWC. Even when we were kicking butt in the group stage, we weren't scoring much from the run of play).

    One more note on tactics: train the team to use more than one gear in any given tournament. Don't be so rigid. These are great athletes, and they are smart. They can walk and chew gum at the same time.

    Third is to effectively manage the transition from the Founders' generation to the younger group, led by the above three but also including the U-19 champs of last year and some of the younger WUSA stars. This does not mean dismissing the Founders en masse. Lilly and Hamm are obviously still among the best players in the game. Macmillan's ability on crosses and set pieces are rare in the women's game. Fawcett is a steadying influence in central defense. Joy's strength and mistake-free play allow her fellow backline players to play more freely, with greater confidence. Scurry and Mullinix are two of the top three keepers in the world. In other words, the transition should be steady and ongoing. Commit to renewal, but not sudden change.

    Fourth, schedule more competitive friendlies and fewer paycheck friendlies. The post-Algarve schedule this year was a joke.

    Fifth, use those friendlies see if some of the players who had success in WUSA can step up. Grubb, Devvyn Hawkins, Mitts and Kluegel all deserve a long look.
  7. Jumbo1

    Jumbo1 Member

    Feb 19, 2000
    The match against Mexico can be the farwell game for several players. This would be a good send off , and we can get about the business of bringing in the untested talent, as well.

Share This Page