Discussion in 'NWSL' started by Heeligan2, Aug 4, 2002.

  1. Heeligan2

    Heeligan2 Member

    Jan 27, 2001
    Earthaven, NC
    Unless I counted something wrong, here is what I figured.

    We played 6 games early in the season without Prinz. 3 Wins, 1 Loss, 2 Ties for 11 points or 1.83 points per game.

    We have so far played 13 games with Prinz for 8 wins, 4 losses, and 1 tie. 25 points for 1.92 points per game.

    Since Prinz has been such a big factor since she came, my question is how did we do so well without her?

    What about defense? We gave up 7 goals in the first 6 matches and 21 in the next 13 so our defense seems to have been stronger, but if you leave out the recent Washington Freedom debacle, that makes it 16 goals given up in 12 matches which is not that different.

    Our 3 wins in the first 6 games were all by 1 goal. Of our 8 wins thereafter, 5 were by more than 1 goal.

    We never scored more than two goals in a match before Prinz joined the team. In the 13 games since she joined, we scored more than two in 6 matches. We scored 7 goals in the first 6 matches and 29 goals in the remaining 13.

    Food for thought...
  2. cachundo

    cachundo Marketa Davidova. Unicorn. World Champion

    Feb 8, 2002
    Genesis 16:12...He shall be a wild ass among men
    Manchester United FC
    Two words . . . . . Unni Lehn.

    The two early wins against SJ & ATL showed Lehn's pace and versatility on the flanks. Stretched the defense, allowing space to open up elsewhere.

    Carolina was easier to contain w/o Prinz. Control the Norwegians, and Fotop will be next to useless. When Prinz showed up, she added a new dimension up top . . . . . mobility.
  3. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Unni - Hege - Birgit

    Excellent analysis cachundo!

    During the second half of that first match vs. Atlanta, I saw some of the best soccer I have seen all season in the WUSA. It was absolutely awesome watching the way that Hege and Unni played together seeming to know exactly where the other player would be going to most of the time.

    That was probably one of the most dominant 1-0 victories I have ever seen. The pass that Hege made to TR to set up her game-winning goal was also one of the best assists I have seen all season.

    Carolina created so many great scoring opportunities in the last 20-25 minutes of that match that it felt like the Courage had won by a much greater margin. If Prinz had been playing for the Courage then, with her great finishing ability the final score of that match could easily have been at least 4-0.
  4. GoCourage

    GoCourage Member

    May 27, 2001
    Durham, NC
    Slatons Injury

    I wonder if Danielle Slaton's injury should figure into the Prinz equation. I'm not so sure the sum of the 'goals against' is as telling as the W-L column. I think Saturday was the first since the last San Jose match that she played healthy. When she is coming up the flank from her defensive position she is as dangerous as Prinz is on the offensive side (well... sort of... :). She definitely is the defensive stopper.

    Unfortunately, the history contained in all the old BigSoccer posts is... history. Seems to me the defense WAS playing a lot better at the start of the season. Perhaps I'm the only one who has been on the edge of my seat everytime the ball gets anywhere near Luckenbill. The defense recently seems to be relying on the midfield, Riise, especially, to control the flow of the game and keep the pressure off that half of the field. On the defensive half the ball isn't cleared well, players aren't marked well, the goal is not protected well. Maybe attribute that to Prinz and the effect she has on making everyone (including Fotop... ;-) a spectator when she touches the ball.
  5. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Re: Slaton's Injury

    This is a really important point you make. Danielle Slaton made a huge difference for the Courage early on in the season. I was extremely impressed with Slaton in the Courage's season opening victory here in San Diego and felt like she was the player of the match that day for Carolina.

    If you were Coach McDermott would you consider leaving Slaton off of the travel squad for these next two road matches in New York and San Diego? I think Carolina should be able to get four points against the Power and the Spirit without Slaton and I'm sure that Danielle would greatly benefit from having the extra time off and be a lot more rested for the opening playoff game.
  6. GoCourage

    GoCourage Member

    May 27, 2001
    Durham, NC
    Unni and Hege

    Hey Tritonspirit you really need to hit some more of the Carolina matches (not so easy from Cali, right?). It seems to be a really unfair advantage that Unni and Hege have experience playing together. :) They are amazing on the field.

    ...And they were no doubt huge contributors to the fast start this season. The fact that Riise had someone so accessible created some great plays. I think it has only been in the last half of the season, though, that Unni has looked like a very strong contributor. The problem, I see, is that you can't quantify what shes brings to the offense without seeing her play... and you can't appreciate it if you aren't paying close attention to how she is playing her position and how well she positions herself to start runs at the goal.

    As for sitting Slaton... Hmm...

    She was playing without a brace or even tape against San Jose. Does that mean she is healthy? I wouldn't be surpised if she didn't start against New York, but I don't think she will sit both games. Not having another fast defender to match up against Milbrett might be the difference between staying home and travelling to Atlanta (or Washington) for a playoff match. I don't know how much they value playing at SAS, though.
  7. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Re: Unni and Hege

    I really wish that I had been able to schedule another road trip to North Carolina again this season like I did last year. I was actually at Fetzer Field almost exactly one year ago for the final home game that the Courage played there. I also got to go to the party that the Courage had afterwards (wasn't it at the "Founder's Club?") and as a result I had a great opportunity to meet most of the team there. That reminds me of two Courage players I met at that party that I have really missed this season - Silvana Burtini and Mikka Hansen. :(

    Since they had spring training at the ARCO center last year in March, I also got to see Hege and the Courage play two exhibitions here. Along with that final match at Fetzer I also saw their final match of the season here in San Diego. That day Hege even set the record for the quickest assist in WUSA history (58 seconds) and I believe that record still stands. :)
  8. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Sitting Slaton

    You're right GoCourage, sitting Slaton is a tough call. You definitely want Danielle rested and ready to go for the semis, but you also really want to be able to host that match at SAS Stadium. I guess that's why they pay Coach McDermott the big bucks they do to make these hard decisions. ;)
  9. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Courage Travel Schedule

    Does anyone know if the Courage will be traveling straight to San Diego the day after the Power match or will they first return to North Carolina?

    If the team stays on the road, I would lean towards leaving Slaton off of the travel squad. If the team returns home immediately after the Power match, I would start Slaton against New York and only play her as much as she is absolutely needed. Then I would have her stay back in Carolina and rest during the California trip.

    I'm also wondering how much Milbrett will play against the Courage Wednesday? I just saw on the WUSA matchtracker that "Millie" started today for the Power.
  10. lizarazu1998

    lizarazu1998 New Member

    May 16, 2002
    They will be going straight to San Diego the morning after the New York Power game.
  11. tritonspirit

    tritonspirit New Member

    Courage Travel Squad

    Thanks for this information lizarazu1998. Now I'm really curious to know who will be named to Carolina's 16 player travel squad for this two game road trip. Obviously the best case scenario for the Courage would be to get a big lead against the Power and be in a position where some of the key starters could get some much needed rest.
  12. Heeligan2

    Heeligan2 Member

    Jan 27, 2001
    Earthaven, NC
    another theory:
    (from the Courage site)
  13. GoCourage

    GoCourage Member

    May 27, 2001
    Durham, NC
    Wait, we only have 5 losses... :)

    Match - Players out
    Philly - Prinz
    Philly -
    Philly - Riise, Lehn, TR, Slaton
    Atlanta - Slaton 1/2
    Mia Massacre - TR, Slaton 1/2

    Atlanta might be the only match that could have been decided by any single player. Two of the three Philly matches I would attribute to being out-played or out-coached... the third Philly match was an exhibition and probably shouldn't count in the standings. The Washington match was turn-back-the-clock night at SAS (to re-live Mia's glory days and the horror that was last season...).

    That probably doesn't help the discussion... I'll settle for them winning and losing as a team if they all agree to come back next year to try again. :)

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