Should MLS national team players be forced to produce?

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by nobody, Sep 18, 2003.

  1. nobody

    nobody Member+

    Jun 20, 2000
    I brought this up on another thread, but wanted to make its own thread because I'm curious what others think. It seems to me that we have a real problem getting our big name guys from the national team come close to reproducing their peak form in league play.

    If guys like McBride, Donovan, Pablo, etc... are so damn good and clear picks for the US team, don't they ALL need to get off their asses and play like it in MLS? Watching the difference in these guys playing hard and running hard for the US and then loafing around the field for their MLS teams can sometimes look pretty pathetic.

    I'd be more than happy to see Bruce stop giving call ups to guys who don't produce in the league for a year or two until they understand that being a top player means being a top player wherever you are playing, every time you take the field.

    We could still beat up on the early round CONCACAF minnows using the likes of Buddle, Twellman, Ralston and others. We'd have plenty of time a year or more from now to start welcoming guys back into the fold once they get their act together and play at a high level regularly.

    We may be a weaker team in the short term, but if it could motivate players to understand they have to play hard every game in the league, it could raise the level of MLS play, it could mean a long term benefit for the national team.
     
  2. bigdush

    bigdush New Member

    Jul 22, 2003
    Parker, CO
    I too get frustrated with the lack of production from national team players while playing with their respective club teams. But I have to say, if I were The Bruce, I would pick who performs the best for the national team. If a guy sucks with his club team, but kicks ass with the national team, it would be hard to turn him back.

    I'm glad I don't have to select them, because how would you ever know whether a guy is in form or not. Until recently (for example) Pablo really blew when playing with the Rapids, but played decently with the national team. How would Bruce be able to decide that he is only playing bad for his club team?
     
  3. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Listen, this is is very simple. Guys who are playing terribly for their club teams are not going to be international superstars. Despite what people are saying, there IS a correlation between the 2. Yes, you may be good at your club team and might not hack it internationally, but you are not gonna stink on your club team and be great internationally in the long run! Pablo is living off his reputation in ONE game ......... Portugal. Other than that game, he wasn't even any good at the rest of the World Cup. If we are not giving call-ups to guys who are tearing up their leagues, then how are we picking guys? are we drawing straws out of a hat????
     
  4. Northcal19

    Northcal19 New Member

    Feb 18, 2000
    Celtic Tavern LODO (
    I think Pablo Mastroeni is a great example of this. I get to watch him here in Denver, and of course follow him internationally.

    I would disagree that Portugal has been his only good game, but that was a great one. He is VERY talented, obvious better than Richie Williams or Chris Armas at the d-mid spot, at least in Arena's eyes, but here in Denver, well let us say that he has a certain efficiency to his work rate that leads some to say he is loafing. Honestly, he is still good but coasting a bit at Mile High Stadium. These guys, like Mastroeni, have another gear, unlike some of their MLS competition so that is why Bruce calls them in; they have the TALENT to compete internationally. Desire only gets you so far. It is a quandry for sure.
     
  5. Roehl Sybing

    Roehl Sybing Guest

    Yes, congratulations. You figured it out. That's exactly what we've been doing all along.
     
  6. jd2084

    jd2084 New Member

    Aug 1, 2001
    Rhode Island
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I've always wondered why this is. For as good as McBride is, he usually isn't among the leaders in goals scored in MLS. But when you look at his career stats with the Crew they show that in 172 total games (MLS, playoffs, Open Cup) he's scored 67 goals and had 46 assists for 180 points. Considering all the time he's been injured that a pretty good record.

    I would like to see guys like Donovan tear up MLS like he's "supposed to", but I don't think keeping him off the national team would do it.
     
  7. bigdush

    bigdush New Member

    Jul 22, 2003
    Parker, CO
    Bruce's objective is and has been to get the nats playing as a team, some guys mesh better than others. The following is just a fictitious example, please don't read to much into this:

    Jason Kreis tears up the league in scoring, goes to the national team thinking he is owed his spot, acts like a big fat prick to some of the other players thus shredding the cohesiveness within what is supposed to be a team.

    The preceeding was just a fictitious example.

    Just because a player had good numbers for club doesn't make him a great fit for the national team. But it does make him harder to not call up.
     
  8. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    well, i for one don't think that Donovan shouldn't get called up. he is definitely one of, if not our best, players. however we can't continue to have guys who we know from many many previous call-ups are only going to be "decent" to take up the spots of guys who are tearing up their league and potentially could be great. At some point, those second tier players need to be left off some squads to give these other guys a full shot (i.e. Buddle, Twellman, Casey, Gibbs, Gray, etc).
     
  9. Roehl Sybing

    Roehl Sybing Guest

    Thank you. You said exactly the right words. More often than not, the eleven that play for the US are not necessarily the best eleven in the player pool, but they should always be the most cohesive unit the US can put together.
     
  10. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I agree with that 100%, HOWEVER, the job of the national team coach is also to find other up and coming players that can be integrated into the team and BECOME cohesive. We can't continue to stay with the same guys forever and use the excuse that they are cohesive. Some of the guys I mention could surely be just as cohesive if they were getting the shot ......... and who knows ....... they might actually be (gasp), BETTER too!!!
     
  11. Roehl Sybing

    Roehl Sybing Guest

    So when the US played Wales with an all Earthquakes/United lineup and brought out new prospects during the Confed Cup and Gold Cup, that was continuing to stay with the same guys? :rolleyes:

    No one's making excuses. You balance between what works and what you think is going to work. These things don't happen overnight.
     
  12. Mglnbea

    Mglnbea Member

    Jun 26, 2001
    Northern California
    Club:
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I thought Pablo had a pretty good game vs. Mexico in 2002.
     
  13. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Isn't that what I said? I never said it happens overnight. I DID say that integration needs to happen.
     
  14. Treetaliano

    Treetaliano Member

    Jun 29, 2002
    San Diego
    wait...

    is this dude suggesting we no longer call up Landon Donovan because he doesnt lead MLS in goals and assists?

    Is that basically what he is saying?
     
  15. onefineesq

    onefineesq Member+

    Sep 16, 2003
    Laurel, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    No, i don't think he's saying that. I saw plenty of his comments in another thread, and it seemed to me that he was saying that guys who are producing heavily should get a shot, and if that means that guys like LD aren't playing every minute of every game, then sobeit. It will promote heavy competition and will push everyone involved to work harder. Anyway, that's MY take on what he seems to be saying.
     
  16. nobody

    nobody Member+

    Jun 20, 2000
    I'm not saying anything in an absolute way, just starting conversation. I'm actually saying a little bit of both in a small way though.

    Big game, we have to win. Yes, you call up Landon. He's probably our most dangerous attacker.

    But, I do think there is something to be said for not automatically calling guys up, regardless of their play in club ball. Let some guys who always get the call not get the call for a couple friendlies or some of these upcoming qualifiers against crap countries. Call in guys who have busted their asses for their clubs instead. Send a message.

    I'm probably looking at this too much through eys that would like to see the intensity of play in MLS go up and not enough through the eyes of somebody wanting to put the best national team we can out there for a given game. However, I do think that long term, more intense games in MLS on a regular basis could only be good for the US team. And, I think talented players knowing they may not get the call for the big game unless they bring it on a regular basis, may be a possible way to help to achieve that.

    If you don't think MLS is less intense than top leagues, I think most players who have been in both would disagree with you. Personally, I think there is a big gap there and am just throwing out possible ways, however slight, to possibly help that and in turn help the national team.
     
  17. Isisbud

    Isisbud New Member

    Mar 10, 2003
    Encinitas
    Re Donovan:

    How many average games can a "very talented player" have before he is considered average?

    I mean, if you were a martian and your spaceship crashed in the US a month after the WC, and you were appointed coach of the NT (Cuz USSF impressed with your accent), would you pick Donovan?
     
  18. hubbabubba

    hubbabubba Member+

    May 17, 2002
    Ann Arbor, MI
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Nope, but what the hell is a ball? And why do all these people go around swinging their legs all over the place?

    LOL, -HB
     
  19. TeamUSA

    TeamUSA Member

    Nov 24, 1999
    Tianjin, China
    Club:
    Borussia Mönchengladbach
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    You call in the average Donovan to the camp, then the red hot Twellman with all the impressive numbers in MLS and you proceed to watch LD tear it up and show TT for the skirt that he is, or any other player.

    How can you force players as a National Team coach? You don't shoot yourself in the foot by not calling them into camp to look at them. You bring them in to compete for a spot.

    Some players may do better against National Teams rather than against MLS or any other clubs. It's up to the coach of the club team to get the player to produce as they do for the national team.

    I'd like to hear more about this Martian? Is he really that good of a coach? How would you describe his accent?
     
  20. Bruce S

    Bruce S Member+

    Sep 10, 1999
    how players produce for thier clubs has a lot to do with the systems played and whether their team-mates use them well.It is totally self-defeating to base calls ups just on MLS play.If you wanted to do that you would not need a coach, just a computer.
    The international game is much faster in action and thought.I am a big Twellman fan, believe he deserves a chance. But if you think for one nanosecond that he is better than Landon Donovan, your soccer knowledge base is ....a bit low.
     
  21. voros

    voros Member

    Jun 7, 2002
    Parts Unknown
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think Donovan's play with the Quakes has ranged from pretty good to excellent this year myself. And as far as the spaceship question, it takes very little time in the MLS games he plays in to figure out how talented Donovan is relative to the other players on the field.
     
  22. Bob Morocco

    Bob Morocco Member+

    Aug 11, 2003
    Billings, MT
    Landon is the youngest player in the top ten point getters list this season in MLS. He will be 24 in 2006 and 28 in 2010. He is the present and future for the USMNT. If he fulfills his potentional all the rest of the players in the US pool will have to be able to play well with him. He is the type of attacking player who can create goals for himself and his teammates. So a level of high familiarity a non-verbal creative connection will be invaluable to the success of the US team.

    Should Holland not call up Van der Vaart or Van der Meyde if they aren't the top scorers in their league, what about Brazil with Kaka, Diego, and Robinho, or England with Rooney, should they call up Teddy Sheringham instead. No, each of these countries national team coaches realizes that these players will be the core of the team in the next or even this quallifying cycle. Still Bruce should call up players producing in their leagues. But he should take into account age and past national team performances
     
  23. MarioKempes

    MarioKempes Member+

    Real Madrid, DC United, anywhere Pulisic plays
    Aug 3, 2000
    Raleigh, NC
    Club:
    Real Madrid
    Landon got 3 goals tonight, to boost his total to 10 for the year.
     
  24. lplaksina

    lplaksina Member

    Jan 5, 2002
    And now ladies and gents, let's move on to the next ridiculous thread.

    Long live the comedy internet show billed as BIGSOCCER.

    :)
     

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