USA-Cuba: Donovan's Free Kick Goal

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by Turk from Pigs Eye, Jul 8, 2005.

  1. Turk from Pigs Eye

    Turk from Pigs Eye New Member

    Jun 14, 2002
    Pigs Eye (St. Paul),
    I haven't seen this discussed much, but Donovan's free kick goal was the deciding point of the game, and it was bizarre. The Cubans showed their amateur status here. They had seven men in the wall and Donovan still went around it. There was no dip on the ball. I saw on TV that Wolff signalled to Landon to go that way before the kick, so the whole world knew he was going to go that way except, apparently, the Cuban players. It was an easy goal for the US and a royal screw-up by the inexperienced Cubans. Somebody should mail the Cuban coaches a book on set pieces.

    I don't want to be too harsh on the Cubans, though. Up to the last few minutes they gave us an excellent game.
     
  2. chad

    chad Member+

    Jun 24, 1999
    chicago
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    God forbid you give Donovan credit for an excellent free-kick.
     
  3. DoctorD

    DoctorD Member+

    Sep 29, 2002
    MidAtlantic
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Give credit where credit's due: it was the passing drill gizmo the team practiced on.
     
  4. Daren Spencer

    Daren Spencer New Member

    Jun 25, 2001
    Chico,California
    Yeah, I scored 20-30 goals like that in my time.......its really quite easy when the wall is confused about where the goal is.......

    Landon should score like that everytime.......its very easy....... :confused:
     
  5. careerender

    careerender Member

    Jul 10, 2003
    Calvert County, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Turk, please describe exactly what the Cubans did wrong?
     
  6. Deimos

    Deimos Member

    Apr 23, 1999
    Louisville, KY, USA
    Don't we have a video of this so we can point out what went right or wrong?
     
  7. Fulham Fan

    Fulham Fan New Member

    Apr 26, 2004
    Bay Area
    Donovan shot the ball into the left netting. Seemingly everyone on the Cuban side - including the goalie - chose to concede him that corner of the goal.

    Still, it was a well-crafted shot. Ronaldinho takes what the defense gives him, too.
     
  8. CyphaPSU

    CyphaPSU Member+

    Mar 16, 2003
    Not Far
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I second that request :)
     
  9. Turk from Pigs Eye

    Turk from Pigs Eye New Member

    Jun 14, 2002
    Pigs Eye (St. Paul),
    Well it seems that they needed a body in front of where the ball went. The way I saw it the ball went outside of the wall. That's not supposed to happen, especially when you have seven in the wall and the natural bend of the kick from Donovan's right foot is from right to left. It appears to me that the goalie didn't line the wall up correctly, leaving a hole where Donovan kicked it. The whole point of a wall is to force the kicker to go over it. Donovan kicked it straight with no dip. He didn't go over it. That's the way it looked to me.
     
  10. Fulham Fan

    Fulham Fan New Member

    Apr 26, 2004
    Bay Area
    I thought there was some dip on the ball. It just never had to get very high to begin with. I assume he took it with the inside of his foot. It was more about finding the defensive error than putting anything amazing into the kick.
     
  11. uniteo

    uniteo Member+

    Sep 2, 2000
    Rockville, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I don't have a replay going here so I might be wrong, but the wall was set up to protect the (near) right side of the goal and the goalie took the (far) left side.

    Landon just put too much power and precision into that kick and the keeper didn't get to it fast enough. A bullet into the far side netting, a tremendous shot.
     
  12. Turk from Pigs Eye

    Turk from Pigs Eye New Member

    Jun 14, 2002
    Pigs Eye (St. Paul),
    I've got no ax to grind against Donovan. I just don't feel that it was a difficult shot to make. It took good placement and it was kicked hard, but there was no bend required. I think that's the hard part and there aren't a lot of Americans who are good at that.
     
  13. Turk from Pigs Eye

    Turk from Pigs Eye New Member

    Jun 14, 2002
    Pigs Eye (St. Paul),
    Good point. We just took what they gave us.
     
  14. Casper

    Casper Member+

    Mar 30, 2001
    New York
    It's much harder to cover the goal when the ball is straight in front of goal. Seven guys weren't enough. With seven guys in the wall, I'm surprised Donovan didn't pass, but the choice looks good now. Also, I think the goalie was a little screened, and was in position to make the save had he reacted in time.

    But a side-netting strike with pace from 20 yards out is a great shot, no matter what, even if the keeper had managed to pull off a good save. How often do you see that same shot miss frame?
     
  15. mcontento

    mcontento Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Catalina Wine Mixer
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Agreed with the assessment that the Cubans blew it with their wall, but great job by Landon for recognizing it and taking advantage of it with a well struck and well placed shot. A lesser player might have Conveyed it wide left.
     
  16. chad

    chad Member+

    Jun 24, 1999
    chicago
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Cuba screwed up by letting Wolff stand where they should have had a player. Wolff ducked, a Cuban would have jumped - shot blocked. In that case, though, Donovan would have tried a different shot. But they didn't have a player there, so Donovan lifted it over a ducking Wolff and bent it away from the keeper. It was a great shot. It bent down and away into the side-netting, and the diving keeper had no chance.

    I honestly think, and this is of course supposition, that had any name-player on a name-team made it, people here wouldn't be demeaning it. But a fair enough number of folks at bigsoccer have shown their colors with Donovan and they have to deal with it. So it is not like I am attacking a straw man here.
     
  17. sidefootsitter

    sidefootsitter Member+

    Oct 14, 2004
    I guess I have gotten a rep as a LanDo hater here ... which I am not ... and yes, the Cuban GK played it half a step too close to the center of the goal but it was still a great shot.

    Compare this with Zidane's strike against Calamity James in the last Euro where the ball went in about a yard inside a post and James still didn't get it.

    The GK was a bit more to blame on Beasley's goal where he gave him the near post. I guess positioning isn't the guy's strongest suit. The two goals were nearly identical to what Tony Meola gave up in the 1994 WC.
     
  18. Swede

    Swede New Member

    Feb 1, 2000
    Chicago IL
    The wall and the keeper were out of position. Wolf realized it and pointed it out to Landon. Landon takes advantage with an excellant shot then runs in celebration pointing at Wolf, you were right.
     
  19. dcc134

    dcc134 Member+

    Liverpool FC
    May 15, 2000
    Hummelstown, PA
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I didn't see the shot, but whether or not Cuba lined up incorrectly you have to give LD credit for finishing the play.

    I'm encouraged to see that he stepped up, dominated the end of the game the way he did, and finished it off with a clutch goal from a set piece. Well done.
     
  20. bltleo

    bltleo Member+

    Jan 5, 2003
    GERMANY
    Club:
    FC Bayern München
    Nat'l Team:
    Germany
    hello sidefotsitter...hmhm..so see Landon scored 2 goals...and you used
    to critize him on some other thread....I believed in Landon...I also
    made perfect forecast saying that Landon would score 2 goals..
    i really think this guy has talent....
    don´t you think?
    Donovan is even Donovan..

    your bltleo
     
  21. bltleo

    bltleo Member+

    Jan 5, 2003
    GERMANY
    Club:
    FC Bayern München
    Nat'l Team:
    Germany

    Daren you are here? ...
    Landon can score like that everytime:)
     
  22. astabooty

    astabooty Member

    Nov 16, 2002
    China
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    wtf are you talking about turk? on the majority of free kicks the wall is setup to protect the near post, while the goalie stands at the far post. it is common practice for the freekick taker to go over the wall and to the near post, which leads to the goalie assuming, guessing, and leaning towards the near post. that is all that happened. landon took a good freekick which from positioning of the keeper SHOULD be very easy to save, but the goalie leans to where he thinks it will go and there you have it, goal.
     
  23. masoo

    masoo Member

    May 31, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
  24. Footer Phooter

    Jul 23, 2000
    Falls Church, VA

    Did it also help that player #9 ran across the wall as Landon kicked it, thus opening up his spot? (I think he was trying to block the shot, but didn't get it)
     
  25. Tony in Quakeland

    Jan 27, 2003
    Pleasant Hill, CA
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    That is a freaking great shot!
     

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