Lack of Aggression

Discussion in 'Chicago Fire' started by kebzach, Aug 11, 2002.

  1. kebzach

    kebzach Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    Greenfield, WI
    Starting a new thread to see if anyone else feels that:

    Dema Kovalenko
    Ante Razov
    Josh Wolff
    DaMarcus Beasley (at times)

    and others are seeming to NEVER EVER take on defenders 1vs1.

    Not saying that the Fire's offensive system should turn into a glorified pickup game, where you get it and go straight to goal with it, but at the same time, when you're missing your best playmaker and table setter (Nowak), and you see NOBODY really get their head up and shoulders going toward goal on the dribble, and you see guys choosing to dribble right into traffic in the middle of the field (or better yet, just stop at the 18 and lose all forward momentum you have) instead of cutting to the touchline for a cross or shot, you have to wonder:

    Why are all of our offensive threats playing like little girls?

    I take that back. Little girls are more aggressive.

    We're talking about some big name players with big name reputations. I for one would like to see some of these players start to do something to justify the ass kissing that Jack and Ty and co. heap on them.

    - take defenders on
    - take them on with speed
    - get involved, get physical

    After watching us the last 2 months, you'd think it's tougher than it really is out there.
  2. HalaMadrid

    HalaMadrid Member

    Apr 9, 1999
    I completely agree, except for DaMarcus...he does, yesterday was just a bad match for him. I don't think it's a typical attribute of his.
  3. theburden

    theburden Member

    Jul 11, 2002
    MDSC head brewer
    I would like to see everyone up front to take more shots. Watching someone running towards goal on an attack and then stopping, waiting for everyone from both sides to show up, then passing the ball back and ending any real chance of a play being made is getting old.
  4. viperdiablo21

    viperdiablo21 Member

    Jul 20, 2002
    couldnt agree more is seems like sometimes we just try to get too cute and want to walk in the goal. it doesnt quite work that way guys! hristo was on track last game with a couple long distance shots including one that looke beautiful but alas was saved on a great defensive header by gus st. silva.
  5. jmeissen0

    jmeissen0 New Member

    Mar 31, 2001
    page 1078
    dmb has been full of aggression all season... i really don't think he deserves to get thrown in there at all

    dema stands out the most, wolff and ante a bit, but not really

    nowak being hurt kills, and it is pretty much resting on dema... who ain't done jackshit
  6. Fanaddict

    Fanaddict Member+

    Mar 9, 2000
    streamwood IL USA
    Chicago Fire
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Beasley does take on defenders one on one all the time, the problem with the others is they don't have the dribbling skill to dribble around my grandmother and she's been dead for 20 years.
  7. krolpolski

    krolpolski Member+

    It appears, since his injury, Josh is not nearly as aggressive as he once was.

    Ante has never been a 1-v-1 player. He doesn't have the skills to do it. I noticed, however, he is distributing the ball more.

    Dema has accomplished nothing of note this year, except for almost injuring his teammate during the All Star Game.

    DMB needs help. He makes some great runs, but ends up not having anyone open to pass to when he gets closed down.

    I don't know if this lack of offensive (except for DMB) is due to the fact that our midfield is nonexistant. It's time for Bob to admit the Walsh reclamation project has failed. If Kelly Gray isn't injured he should be playing. No. Let me rephrase that: He should be starting. Jason Moore should also see more playing time.

    Without Peter and Chris, and add Jesse's return to the form of his first years with the club, and the guys up top may be afraid to go in by themselves because if they get stripped, they will have to run back to help out.
  8. kebzach

    kebzach Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    Greenfield, WI
    Yes, I agree with this statement completely. I meant to put it in my original post.

    There were a couple of chances for him to get dirty and get involved in a 50/50 on Saturday, and he suddenly became more timid than the 13-14 year old Freshman that I coach on my high school team.

    Not to mention that he won't take a defender on, lest the defender attempt to tackle him and something bad happen.
  9. Chris M.

    Chris M. Member+

    Jan 18, 2002
    I think its safe to say that Dema can be held up as an example to those who say "our young players have to go to Europe to develop."

    He left for his German loan as a confident attacking midfielder who could also create and score his own goals. From the accounts I heard, his first couple of appearances in Germany were quality, and then he began to slide.

    He just hasn't been the same player since his loan period.
  10. kebzach

    kebzach Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    Greenfield, WI
    he hasn't been the same player since around late June/early July last year, IMHO.

    by June 30th last year he had 6 goals. He finished with 8 goals, and added 1 more in the playoffs.

    But I can remember often thinking that he changed his aggressiveness last July and August, and he stopped taking shots.

    we've seen the same trend this year, for the most part.
  11. Stogey23

    Stogey23 Member+

    Dec 12, 1998
    San Diego, CA
    Let me second the comments on Wolff. There were at least two opportunities when he could have gone right to goal with the ball , but for whatever reason, he held up.

    We need to start putting defenses under pressure with our speed.

    Man I miss Peter.
  12. jdm2662

    jdm2662 New Member

    Aug 6, 2002
    Hillside, IL
    Nowak is not going to be around much longer. So, the Fire better learn now how to play without him.
  13. zcgf02

    zcgf02 New Member

    Mar 30, 2001
    I was surprised too by the lack of scoring chances created by the Fire. I don't get to see their games often (only when on ESPN2) but found their creativity (or lack of creativity) shocking.

    Granted, the ref missed an obvious hand ball, but if it can happen in the WC, it can happen in MLS.

    Do all you Fire fans really think it's all b/c of Novak's absence?
  14. bunge

    bunge BigSoccer Supporter

    Oct 24, 2000
    Nowak is the best player in the league in my opinion, and I'm not just saying that because he's a Fire player. Even at his age he could have helped the Polish National Team fairly significantly.

    As for the effect on our game, we're missing Armas and Nowak. That combination has just about destroyed our midfield. If we had those two players, we could rotate and change the players in the other positions and the team could function at a higher-than-MLS-average level. With those two out we're average at best.

    EDIT: On our best day we can beat anyone, on our worst we'll tie D.C. or lose to the Burn. Over the long haul we're average though.
  15. JeffGMc

    JeffGMc Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    New York City
    Chicago Fire
    Can we get Dema's dad to come see a game?
  16. kebzach

    kebzach Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    Greenfield, WI

    maybe that's a part, but unless Peter was to physically shake Josh and Dema and make them take shots and play like they want to do something out there, it's not true to say it's all because he's out.
  17. joseph pakovits

    joseph pakovits New Member

    Apr 29, 1999
    fly-over country
    Now THERE'S an idea! Why didn't we think of this beofre?
  18. Paul D

    Paul D New Member

    Aug 6, 2000
    lower wacker drive
    Someone who has been better than expected in the attacking role is Kelly Gray. He takes the ball and runs with it. We missed him Saturday; I would have played KG vs. walsh.
  19. joseph pakovits

    joseph pakovits New Member

    Apr 29, 1999
    fly-over country
    Paul, Bob Bradley always takes experience over youth. So as long as Walsh is self-ambulatory, Gray will sit.

    Does anyone else find it odd that the Fire attack looks more dangerous when Carlos Bocanegra come forward? Maybe we need to put Dema in as a defender and move Carlos up to midfield.
  20. NotAbbott

    NotAbbott Member

    Oct 11, 1999
    My Own Little World
    Funny you mention that, because I was thinking Carlos almost was playing d-mid on Saturday. That or a more aggressive frontman in a diamond 4 in the back. I always forget if that's sweeper or stopper.

    Of course, that then adds even more to the redundancy of Billy Walsh in the current lineup. All d-mids!! All the time!!

  21. JeffGMc

    JeffGMc Member

    Oct 14, 2000
    New York City
    Chicago Fire
    Stopper. Sweeper plays behind the other def.
  22. krolpolski

    krolpolski Member+

    I'd say it's a big part of it. And I think Hristo and Peter should slap these two guys around really hard, Dema especially.

    Peter's ball control and speed make him the focus of attention of defensive players. That allows players like Josh and Ante to shake their markers and get free.

    With Jesse attempting to move the ball up, defenders aren't as worried. So they can hang onto their men. And because the passes coming out of the midfield are more mediocre, they are easier to intercept. Thus we get even fewer attempts.

    And on top of it, we have the (is this imposed by Bob?) reluctance to take a shot by any Fire player outside the penalty area. So defenders can stay back with their marks.

    Starting Kelly would add an element of unpredictablity to the attack. He's got skills and speed and defenders don't know much about him. Experience be damned. Time to try something different.

    To quote the manager of the Charlston Chiefs during their championship game in the movie Slapshot, "WE'RE LOSING!"

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