Noonan--Under What Circumstances Would He Potentially Play?

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by Shackleton, Apr 14, 2006.

  1. Shackleton

    Shackleton New Member

    Sep 13, 2005
    N. Texas
    Assume Noonan is selected for the US roster. Under what possible circumstances would he play?

    Seems like he could play LM, RM, or F, but he is so far down the depth chart at these positions that I have difficulty ever envisioning him seeing the field if he were selected.

    F: McBride, Johnson, Wolff, Twellman/Ching, Donovan, and Beasley all are ahead of him, and possibly Convey and Dempsey as well.

    RM: Dempsey, Donovan, Reyna, Beasley, and Convey are all ahead.

    LM: Beasley, Convey, Lewis, and O'Brien are all ahead.

    Obviously, some of the players above would be playing another position or unavailable due to injury/suspension or fatigued and in need of being subbed. But, Noonan seems so far down the depth chart at each of these positions that I do not foresee the circumstances that would lead to him playing.

    Does anyone see him getting on the field, if he were selected. If so, what formation, what position, and what circumstances?
  2. Captain10

    Captain10 Member

    Jul 26, 2000
    Marietta, GA
    Corinthians Sao Paulo
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Great question! I'm not sure when he would play. And because I can't really put my finger on it, I'd take another player that I could see playing in *special* situations.

    Yep, either a Freddy, Spector, Dunivant, or Rolfe.

    Noonan's ability to beat a defender and crossing isn't that great -- Lewis and Convey are better at both. Beasley's offense and defense is also much better, although his crosses are really not very good. So all of these players would be on the field before he would. It doesn't make sense to overload that position when it's not warranted.

    Even when Noonan has beaten players and crossed the ball, it has rarely connected to anyone on the other end. I'd much rather have someone that can make an immediate impact.

    If I needed a spark to get things going, I'd rather have someone whose one-on-one skills are top notch -- Adu. If I need some more intensity and a defensive presence, I'd bring in Spector. If I needed to bring Lewis up to get more into the attack, I'd stick Dunivant in and he is also good at serving the ball forward.

    Rolfe is stepping up his game and can provide quickness, speed, and service up front. Not skills that Noonan has shown.

    So ... for me, I don't see what utility Noonan brings to the table.
  3. Martin Fischer

    Martin Fischer Member+

    Feb 23, 1999
    Kampala. Uganda
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    It's a good question. Strangely, I think his best chance would be at forward or right mid, positions he has not played for the USMNT this year. Basically, his main role would be an emergency right midfielder if Dempsey got injured AND Arena wanted to play with a midfielder who stayed wide on the right.
  4. ursula

    ursula Member

    Feb 21, 1999
    Republic of Cascadia
    Backup in case of injuries, basically. Injuries will happen.
  5. sidefootsitter

    sidefootsitter Member+

    Oct 14, 2004
    If the US is ahead or Bruce is happy with a point vs Czechia and vs. Italy late in the game and getting Pat out there allows Arena to play a little possession ball and also rest McBride, Beasley or Dempsey.
  6. Maximum Optimal

    Maximum Optimal Member+

    Jul 10, 2001
    It seems that Noonan would be fourth or fifth choice at just about every position he could play. On the other hand, we have a situation at defensive mid where all we have is Mastroeni. Reyna and JOB could play that role but I wonder if they bring the defensive bite we are going to need against a really good team. And of course they are two of our most brittle players. Given this situation, it makes more sense to give that last midfield spot to someone who can play defensive mid rather than to Noonan.
  7. miked9

    miked9 Member+

    May 4, 2000
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think you can make an argument that from a standstill, Noonan is better 1v1 than anyone in the pool. His footskills are better, if not as flashy, than Dempsey, EJ, et al. Donovan & Beasley rely on speed to beat guys on the dribble. Noonan's ability is all in his ability to unbalance defenders...and he's got an absolutely lethal cutback (not quite Preki-esque, but Noonan can go left or right off of it).

    Of course his speed is a limiting factor, but I still think he would be a great sub into a flank attacking position in a 4-3-3 or a 3-4-3 if we need a goal. Take a defender or a DMid off, push Noonan into a wide attacking position. That would allow a midfielder like Dempsey to make cuts to the inside (his speciality), and put Noonan into situations where he'd be dangerous: receiving a ball on the wing, beating a couple guys on the dribble and make a final pass for a goal.

    And, of course, he offers depth.
  8. ugaaccountant

    ugaaccountant New Member

    Oct 26, 2003
    I cannot imagine a scenario where Noonan plays where he is better than 4th choice. Hence no reason to bring him. There are other guys who could be 2nd choice in a situation that need to be brought instead.
  9. Autogolazo

    Autogolazo BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 19, 2000
    Bombay Beach, CA
    I'm not even sure that Noonan would play if Dempsey got hurt.

    Bruce might switch DMB to the right and put Convey on in that case.

    But Bruce did say he liked Pat's locker room presence. :rolleyes:
  10. sidefootsitter

    sidefootsitter Member+

    Oct 14, 2004
    I'll throw a wild card in here - if Pat makes the roster, I'd like to see him tried as a central attacking mid where his ball control could be used to some advantage where he would have more options than an off-foot cross.
  11. HoustonSoccer

    HoustonSoccer New Member

    Mar 11, 2006
    Houston, Texas
    Houston Dynamo
    I will not be surprised if he plays in RMF alternating with Dempsey. Noonan does have good dribbling skills and plays good defense.

    Dempsey is an excellent dribbler, draws a lot of foul in the attacking third and can score. I have not seen him in defense. And the RMF position does require playing the lane all the way back to defense.
  12. uiriamu

    uiriamu Member

    Mar 16, 2005
    Philly, (NC)
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    This is a really good question and a great way to think about roster formation that I've never considered. (Rep for you.)

    I've been lukewarm on including Noonan for some time but have always deferred to others' judgment because of his vaunted versatility. That holds less weight for me now.

    How might we view other "versatile" bubble players? Is Spector similarly far down the list? How about the backup DM options-how close is a KZ/Olsen to seeing the pitch?

    Edit: must spread reputation apparently:(
  13. russ

    russ Member+

    Feb 26, 1999
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

  14. bunge

    bunge BigSoccer Supporter

    Oct 24, 2000
    Drought, famine or pestilence. That's my religious joke for this Easter. Thank you for your support.
  15. ugaaccountant

    ugaaccountant New Member

    Oct 26, 2003
    Defense is hard to say as most everyone is versatile. I think Spector would be Bruce's third choice at every position on the backline, that should be good enough to go in that last spot.

    Olsen wouldn't get in a game unless Reyna, O'brien and Mastro all started and two had to be subbed. For those three to start Donovan would be at forward so he would come back to midfield first.

    Are all 23 eligible each game or is it still a 18 man active list? If so I'd be bringing Adu, Spector, Rolfe instead of some older guy that wouldn't even make the active list.
  16. TheRightPants

    TheRightPants Member

    Feb 23, 2006
    Los Angeles, Etc.
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

    All 23 players are eligible.

Share This Page