Should Pia Sundhage be fired if the U.S. now does not make World Cup?

Discussion in 'USA Women: News and Analysis' started by WPS_Movement, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. WPS_Movement

    WPS_Movement Member+

    Apr 9, 2008
    You can make that argument for sure.

    Some might laugh at that though, because she coached the team to an Olympic Gold medal in 2008.

    I say the World Cup is much more important than the Olympics (no tournament is more elite than the World Cup), and by not making the World Cup, it would be the biggest tragedy in America sports history (men or women) and would end up in Pia being forced to resign (i.e. fired).
     
  2. usa3por2ft

    usa3por2ft Member

    Oct 15, 2002
    in exile
    Club:
    Millwall FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    We can debate the should, but I have no doubt that she will be fired if the US fail to qualify.
     
  3. Cville K C

    Cville K C Member

    Nov 3, 2008
    Collinsville, IL
    Club:
    Saint Louis Athletica
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I have been a heavy supporter of Pia considering how she revived the team after the 2007 World Cup. However, if they lose to Costa Rica or Italy, after losing to Mexico, that would be two losses that just can't be explained away.

    I think she waited way too long to pull the trigger on substitutions, given how bad the team was playing in the 1st half. Pia seems to fall in love with some players that just aren't producing on the field and that is bothersome. With the team having so much trouble with possession and passing, Lindsey should have been in for Lloyd almost immediately. I like A-Rod, but she just isn't getting it done right now. And goodness, I respect Rapinoe's ability, but she pretty much stunk most of the game and I don't know if she was ever subbed out (if she was, it was very late).

    The question is, is it Pia or the US system? The under-17's didn't qualify either. We are starting to see less than acceptable results on all levels.

    I would never fire a coach based on one game. But the US sleepwalked through much of the Concacaf group stage as well. They can redeem themselves by taking care of Costa Rica and Italy. That would give them a chance (six months) to regroup for the World Cup. But a loss to Costa Rica or Italy, following this loss to Mexico, is simply not acceptable.

    And I think somebody at US Soccer needs to explain what the situation is with Chalupny. Please come clean. Why hasn't she been cleared in spite of playing most of the WPS season last year? Is it a case where there really is a serious health issue or is it a case where somebody doesn't want her on the team and they're using the health issue as an excuse. We could use a solid outside back right now or we could even use her in the midfield. She has to be an improvement over what we saw tonight.
     
  4. JanBalk

    JanBalk Member+

    Jun 9, 2004
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Nat'l Team:
    Sweden
    It is mainly the US system, but Pia was brought in to compensate for the shortcomming of the system and failing that looking for someone who can seems reasonable. But I am not sure if any one person can.
     
  5. Longtimesub

    Longtimesub Member

    May 18, 2009
    Yes, indeed, she should be fired if US fails to qualify...

    But, I don't know if USSF would ever consider firing her...I think her contract does not end until after 2012...It might just cost too much to fire her...
     
  6. Nacional Tijuana

    Nacional Tijuana BigSoccer Supporter

    May 6, 2003
    San Diego, Calif.
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Interesting question. Who would not want her?
     
  7. TrueCrew

    TrueCrew Member+

    Dec 22, 2003
    Columbus, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yes, she should be fired, and will be if we do not qualify.

    However, the problems, like on the men's side, is with the system. On the men's side, it prevents us from being able to become a world power. On the women's side, it is a millstone on the back of a once dominant program, but other nations with rich soccer traditions and better infrastructures/systems are now catching up, or have already passed us (Germany/Brazil).
     
  8. chinadaiyi

    chinadaiyi Member

    Sep 11, 2008
    China
    Club:
    SS Lazio Roma
    Nat'l Team:
    China PR
    bad news for US,if they lost the coming game vs Costa Rica or Italy.

    i think US need more change..they didn't lost a game for about 2 years(0:2Norway in 2008)?..and PIA played the same for a long time..

    earlier the last October,they should lost to China at home,a 47 games unbeated isn't important.many problems,did she do some very necessary change?

    and now, i think USA can beat Costa Rica easily. Italy???? i don't know.
     
  9. kolabear

    kolabear Member+

    Nov 10, 2006
    los angeles
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think Dan Loney explained the proper protocol and writing guidelines in addressing matters like this regarding US national team coaches. You're supposed to use all caps and at least triple exclamation marks, as in

    FIRE BOB BRADLEY NOW!!!

    So the initial post should've started off,

    FIRE PIA SUNDHAGE NOW!!!
     
  10. casocrfan

    casocrfan Member

    Nov 25, 2004
    San Francisco
    If the team doesn't qualify she gets canned but only if the team doesn't qualify.

    The system needs fixing and the US needs to hire, and empower, a coach to work from the bottom up to fix how young players are developed. The national coach needs to hire all youth national coaches and set the standard for the type of player desired.

    With very few exceptions the college game is not cutting it any more when it comes to development. The collegiate women's game has become more and more like the men's.... all about athleticism and not about technical and tactical skill. With WPS on the the ropes a National team coach needs to take the leadership in the development of our youth, without that, the US will be reduced to a second tier international team.
     
  11. kool-aide

    kool-aide Member+

    Feb 1, 2002
    a van by the river
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The trouble is that Pia is making quite a few mistakes of her own that seem to compound the issues in the USWNT pool. The back 4 she prefers is 3 cbs & a right back past her sell by date. That's on Pia not the problems w/ player development or the existing pool.

    She waited a long time to make some obviously needed subs last night and then the first player off was not the player making the worst mistakes or the most obviously tired. In fact, the player pulled was the one player known to be near her best in the big, do or die moments. And then Pia waited even longer to make further subs. Those mistakes are Pia's and not related to problems w/ youth soccer or the pool.

    FYI: the player that scored Mexico's second goal is a product of the USA and the NCAAs.
    I disagree a bit about the current state of the top level NCAA programs but that's a subject for a different thread.

    I'm pretty sure the Fed isn't going to fire her just b/c her team failed to get out of the semifinals. But, were I in charge, for her to keep her job, she's got to make some significant changes in how she coaches (and some changes in player selection).

    One thing is quite clear. She and the entire squad must do better on Monday.
     
  12. wokeupfuzzy

    wokeupfuzzy Member

    Apr 24, 2010
    well said, all of it. We've all discussed the player selection here many times before, but what I didn't expect last night was the poor player management during the game. It didn't seem like the coach was identifying the biggest problems and making the necessary changes. She just waited around expecting things to change on their own when clearly the players weren't coming together on the field. I was thinking "do they have Ellis on the phone making the decisions?"

    And she should have learned something from the poor 1-1 performance against China.
     
  13. NYC ugly

    NYC ugly Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    Very near my computer
    Pia is garbage who should have been canned a long time ago! :mad: If the best US players are allowed to play without a coach, they would still qualify. The USSF waiting for the US not to qualify for the World Cup first before firing an incompetent coach is madness. They should get rid of Bob Dylan whether they qualify or not. Preparing for a World Cup shouldn't be about winning meaningless tournaments and friendlies. Using the same old players and not giving younger players a chance to mature by playing.
     
  14. Cville K C

    Cville K C Member

    Nov 3, 2008
    Collinsville, IL
    Club:
    Saint Louis Athletica
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think Pia has given some younger players a chance (Tobin Heath, Alex Morgan, Lauren Cheney, Kelley O'Hara, Christine Nairn), plus some other players that wouldn't have been given a chance had it not been for WPS (Lori Lindsey, Megan Schnur). But then she always falls back on the old unreliables.

    The midfield was uncharacteristically bad last night. I'm sorry, but you can't keep trotting Carli Lloyd (a Pia favorite) out there when she shows up to play maybe one match out of every five. Her passing is only average when at it's best. She has a booming shot, but it's rarely on target. I know she scored the goal last night, but that was a rare exception. If you are going to have any kind of possession and ball control in the middle, put in someone who is good at those things, Lori Lindsey. Rapinoe is normally better, but last night was not good and she should have went out instead of O'Reilly. Those are two moves that Pia should have made and didn't.

    The problem on defense goes a long way back. I remember Sweden getting breakaway after breakaway in the 2009 Algarve Cup against our back line. Pia should be giving more of a look at Brittany Taylor, Whitney Engen, and some of the younger players to show what they can do.

    I honestly think Pia was trying to get through this next World Cup with the same veterans and then look to the younger players after that is over. After last night, the time schedule for moving younger players into the lineup may just have been moved up. We can hope.

    And indeed, last night's hero (Veronica Perez) played college soccer at Washington and wasn't even good enough to make the first 18 on an Athletica squad that was coached by Jorge Barcellos, hardly a product or an advocate of the American system.

    What we saw last night was one team that was much better than the sum of their parts (Mexico) against a team that was far less than the sum of their parts (US). The US didn't play as a team and Mexico did. Coaching is at least part of the blame for that.
     
  15. SBALL

    SBALL Member

    May 17, 2010
    Club:
    --other--
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Tony Dicicco is a coach who isn't afaird to make changes.He is responsible for Morgan being in the pool. When he coached the 20"s to gold he cut a couple of big name players, no was was safe. When the USSF fired Greg R,Tony was on the short list but they knew he would come in and make big changes. Pia got the job because they knew she would fall in line. I know Tony has his hater's but he is the type to make changes and bring in new talent.
     
  16. Soccer1161

    Soccer1161 New Member

    Oct 17, 2006
    If Pia was hoping to take the old Vets to the World Cup, she would then end up taking them to the Olympics, only a year later. The time is now to get the players on this team that can compete with speed, skill, and creativity.
     
  17. giatano

    giatano Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    old brown jug tavern newcastle
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    The Personality that each individual player brings to the team, is reflected in the type
    of play they bring to the field. HAO in her spirit, her never quit attitude. LLoyd in her
    toughness, and determination etc. Those must be molded and blended together by the coach into a team that utilizes what each individual player has to offer.
    The question to ask is- Is Pia recognizing these personalities, and is she blending them
    together to create a team that will play at a high level? Can she identify the right parts
    and where they fit.? Has she been restrained by higher level authority? Injuries have
    certainly taken there toll on this years squad So are there alternatives? Maybe it is not talent, but tactics? Stayed tuned Monday night for more drama.
     
  18. WPS_Movement

    WPS_Movement Member+

    Apr 9, 2008
    Tony Dicicco is the greatest American women's soccer coach ever for the history of the U.S. women's national team (Anson included).
     
  19. gogogo

    gogogo Member

    Apr 18, 2002
    "If he trips he must be sustained; if he makes mistakes they must be covered; if he sleeps he must not be wantonly disturbed; if he is no good he must be poleaxed."
    - Churchill on Prime Ministers

    Same with coaches. I'm a big Pia fan. But if the US were not to qualify....
     
  20. Batfink

    Batfink Member+

    May 23, 2010
    Attilan
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    LOL I said this a while back and got told to shut the eff up.

    Sundhage is a safe coach. She got the job because she wouldn't pull up trees before the China Olympics. She'll be a safe coach after WWC too. Problem is USA have to bring wholesale changes post 2011WC due to an ageing squad. Question is will Sundhage have the balls to seek more influence from U.S.Soccer in the youth team development, while also bringing in a totally new breed of player she has had no love for up till now.

    DiCicco has his haters but has won a recent world title with the future of the USWNT player pool. In doing so he has said on more than one occasion women's soccer in the U.S. needs rebooting because it's stalled and needs be fixed. I don't think U.S.Soccer intends Sundhage to be around to do the fixing. Her time was only meant for the 08 Olympics, and then by fluke she overachieved and convinced people she could take them further.
     
  21. lovingthegreen

    May 29, 2006
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Very calid point that I agree with ...

    ... but even with that, she has to go if the U.S. does not get past Costa Rica and Italy. To have this country not even make a Women's World Cup with the history it has is not something that can be defended or explained away.

    Now if she does get by Costa Rica and Italy, then let's see what she does at the World Cup next summer and go from there. I would still be leaning towards letting her go, but would be willing to be open-minded through the end of the World Cup before re-assessing at that point.
     
  22. alckz

    alckz Member

    Oct 30, 2009
    Club:
    Houston Dynamo
    i think at this point, firing her even though we beat cr and italy would not be a good move. i agree with the comments above. but in the case that we get beat by italy, or at the costa rica match...drop it, drop that axe!

    her ability to coach will show on these next few matches. right now it's how will you train? how well do you know your players?, and how technical are you during the course of live play.
     
  23. kool-aide

    kool-aide Member+

    Feb 1, 2002
    a van by the river
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    It is her in game/tourny decision making that I am questioning and very much doubting. I didn't doubt her actual coaching ability until this tourny. Her player selections, yes. But this tourny makes me question her actual in game abilities and her willingness to see things going badly and make decisive changes to ameliorate the situation.

    She waited until the 84th minute to make her 2nd sub and did not make the 3rd sub at all.

    The trouble is, were she to be fired (or resign) I don't see an obvious replacement with the necessary qualifications/experience that is free to take the job. There's been precious little in the way of successful grooming of coaching talent on the international level w/in the USWNT coaching ranks. Ellis proved unworthy to take the top job with her poor performance this past summer. Hege is Pia's current #2 and I don't think she's got the experience for the top job. Waldrum doesn't have the international experience necessary. Maybe Tom Stone but while he's been a USWNT assistant (or maybe Uxx coach, I forget) I'm not convinced he's ready for the top job.
     
  24. Batfink

    Batfink Member+

    May 23, 2010
    Attilan
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    I think you hit the nail on the head there. The system of coaching development in various departments of the women's game has been neglected. You fire Sundhage there is no immediate U.S. option to take USA to the Olympics and beyond, then seriously implement positive change.

    I did hear something about U.S.Soccer looking to change the youth teams coaching system from part time to full time. If that were to happen would U.S.Soccer be hoping to have one of these youth coaches in line for the top job at some point? I always wonder why former U.S. players are not part of the youth team or even senior team coaching staff though.

    Italy games will tell all on whether Sundhage should stay or go. Those games will be the most tactical games USA will have played in a long time. Italy have a very tactically astute coach in Pietro Ghedin, his team set up will test Sundhage's in game decision making for all to see.
     
  25. FreeKicks

    FreeKicks New Member

    Sep 29, 2009
    Club:
    Chicago Red Stars
    I'm waiting to see Falk, Engen, and Taylor get shots. They all deserve it on the backline.
     

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