Just back from US/Cuba game -- observations (R)

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by flem16, Jul 8, 2005.

  1. flem16

    flem16 Rainmaker

    Jan 9, 2005
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    First, if you ever have a chance to catch a game in person, whether it be Gold Cup, a friendly, or a World Cup qualifier I'd say definitely go for it. I was debating about not going since it was only Cuba but was glad I did even though we completely sucked for a vast majority of the game. It's amazing how much more you see watching a game in person than just seeing it on TV. Much different perspective...

    Now for the observations:

    Tony Sanneh: Wow, has he gone downhill from his performance in the 2002 Cup. Completely responsible for the Cuban goal and couldn't play a ball in the air to save his life. Also looked very slow. I was a big fan of his and hoped he'd get another chance after Korea/Japan but it's time to put him out to pasture

    Jimmy Conrad: He didn't do a bad job in the central defense but I did feel a bit uneasy with him anchoring things in the back. It would be interesting to see how he'd do in a 4-4-2 and at which position he'd be best. He is a bit old to be getting his first cap and I'd rather see some of the younger players getting a shot here.

    Conor Casey: Are you kidding me? He was awful. He looked like one of the forwards we would have thrown out there during World Cup qualifying 15 years ago. He's so slow and has no creativity on the ball. Let's not waste our time with this one.

    Frankie Hejduk: This is a real interesting one. I think Frankie if used correctly can be a great asset for the Nats. I thought he played a solid game although I don't think his role is as a 90 minute starter. He fouls indiscriminantly and after he picked up a card in the first half did his best to try and get his 2nd yellow. His energy is amazing and I think he would be a perfect sub for a 15-20 minute stretch during cup matches.

    Brad Davis: I honestly can't say I saw much out of Brad good or bad. He didn't make any serious errors but at the same time didn't play his way onto the team

    Ben Olsen: See Brad Davis. Didn't really do anything special. A guy like this needs to make a splash if he wants to go to Germany and I don't think this happened

    Chris Armas: I loved his play before he got hurt at the end of qualifying for Korea/Japan but he clearly isn't the same player any more. This is Mastroeni's spot in the D-mid and Chris' age is obviously catching up with him.

    Santino Quaranta: Definitely showed promise as well as his youth. One of the few bright spots from this game. I'd really like to see what he looks like playing more consistently with the 1st team. I'd much rather see him up there than Casey or Wolff. His touch cost him at times and his shots were wild but at least he showed some spark.

    Clint Dempsey: Exciting and frustrating. Could have had 3 or 4 goals if he could finish. I don't think he could put that ball over the goal from less than 2 yards out if he tried again. The thing that I really like about Clint (much more than Ralston or Noonan) is that he challenges his opponent. He's not afraid to put a move on a guy and then make a cross. I think he'll be a starter or 1st tier sub in Germany.

    DaMarcus Beasley: A tale of two halves. In the 1st he was non-existent and I was very unimpressed. In the 2nd he looked like a player who is a star in the Dutch 1st Division. However, it may not be a coincidence that his 2nd half emergence came with the entrance of O'Brien and Donovan.

    Marcus Hahnemann: Wasn't tested much. He did let up a goal but that was all on Tony Sanneh. Keller may have stopped it but likely not. I still like the fact that he plays everyday in Europe and think that he'll make it to Germany...only question is will it be as a #2 or #3.


    Landon Donovan: Showed his class. The game was completely different with him on the field. Although he botched a couple good scoring chances he did put two in the net. One of the key things I think is that he made the players around him better (see Beasley). This is one of the most underrated qualities a player can have and Landon has that.

    John O'Brien: Was glad to see him back on the field. I almost didn't recognize him with that mop on his head. If he can get back in shape I think he will be one of the greatest additions to the team. Where is he best - in the midfield or on the backline? Better question may be where do we need him most.

    Josh Wolff: Of the three subs he's the one that didn't impress much. I'd rather see Quaranta or some other younger guys up front. Outside of EJ and McBride our forwards worry me a lot.

    Overall, we played a brutal game for 86 minutes but seeing the team that we fielded I guess it's not too surprising. If Bruce was looking for some conclusive results here would be my $.02:

    Gone from consideration
    Tony Sanneh
    Chris Armas
    Conor Casey
    Ben Olsen
    Brad Davis

    Would like to see more of
    Santino Quaranta
  2. Dirt McGirt

    Dirt McGirt Member+

    Jun 20, 2005
    Phoenix, AZ
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Like seeing all the Mexican fans that were rooting for Cuba leave pissed. :D

    Landon is the best football/soccer player ever produced in the USA period.

    Santino had a great game with a few mistakes but played with alot of fire.

    Tony Sanneh it is over. He looked old and out of place tonight.

    See you at the Canada game. :)
  3. xpo38

    xpo38 BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 10, 2000
    SF Bay Area, CA
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

    I think it's too soon for B.Davis to be in the "gone from consideration" catagory. Like Quaranta, it's his first cap. Now I agree Davis didn't do much, in another thread someone mentioned that he looked like he was playing safe, I agree. He didn't have the ball nearly as much as Quaranta did and still came away with the best cross/pass in the game in my opinion. Yes I know one cross/pass doesn't make a game, but my point is that we didn't get to see all B.Davis has to offer yet. Unlike folks like Olsen, Hejduk, Armas, etc.
  4. scaryice

    scaryice Member

    Jan 25, 2001
    Casey and Sanneh need to go, especially Casey. This is a guy who scored like 2 goals in 30 games this year in Germany, and he has never played well for the USA. Maybe he can get another shot after the World Cup, but not now.
  5. Geneva

    Geneva LA for Life

    Feb 5, 2003
    Southern Cal
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Thanks for the reports from the game.

    One thing that occurs to me is that, although Sanneh & Olsen may have played their way off the team, Hejduk clearly didn't, and I doubt if Armas did. For his 1st game back in ages, he didn't do too badly. I don't want to see him again, but I'll bet anything that we will.

    But if Sanneh plays again I might not watch. Wow, big threat, I'll bet Bruce is scared now.:D
  6. mickhayafe

    mickhayafe New Member

    Jun 4, 2002
    Bakersfield, CA
    this is the only line i disagree with...Keller has done miraculous things in qualifying. that save would have been an 8 on my scale but he's had afew 9 and 10 point saves. :)

    I'm thinking of only watching the last 15 minutes of the canada game if you know what i mean...just kidding
  7. BulaJacket

    BulaJacket Member

    Columbus Crew (hometown), Minnesota United (close ties), Colorado Rapids (now home), Jacksonville Armada (ties)
    United States
    May 9, 2003
    Ashtabula, OH / Denver, CO / MN / Jax
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Very much agree.
    I thought he played decently overall, with no one working with him in the first half, and finally had people to work with in the second, with some decent play down the sideline and a good run and/or cross or two. Overall, definately would like to see another look with him.

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