USA v Italy in-game [R]

Discussion in 'USA Women: News and Analysis' started by nsa, Oct 22, 2003.

  1. M9fanatic

    M9fanatic Member

    Oct 31, 2000
    North Side.
    so here's a thought....

    How much did all that time spent on Cramer is bitting the US on the ass now?

    I mean they took her to Algarve not Wagner. That time with the Nats would have helped Wagner further along.

    Does that makes sense?

    I just think Cramer was a huge waste of time.
  2. cachundo

    cachundo Katie Meyer 2000-2022

    Feb 8, 2002
    Genesis 16:12...He shall be a wild ass among men
    Manchester United FC
    Ape can't win. For every hit, there's a miss. Just like for every Lorrie Fair or Jena Kluegel, there's a Boxx or a Bivens.

    USA's success, or lack of it, can not and should not be placed on the shoulders of someone who's not on the field of play.
  3. cachundo

    cachundo Katie Meyer 2000-2022

    Feb 8, 2002
    Genesis 16:12...He shall be a wild ass among men
    Manchester United FC
    I suppose a few fans who paid to be there didn't get their money's worth. This thing with the USSF buying time on ESPN for the WNT for 8 games/yr. (12 games for a WWC year) is starting to get stale. It seemed that players such as Foudy and Fawcett seemed disinterested and it showed in their play. But since they're the 'names that sell', Ape's obligated to play them.

    OTOH, when the college kids came in, they played as if they wanted to prove something. There seemed to be a big difference, motivation-wise, between the kids & the vets.
  4. Micro Scope

    Micro Scope New Member

    Apr 30, 2002
    It has to be over now for April

    It was smiles all around as the United States Women’s National Team took an embarrassing tie from their game with Italy tonight. Lilly smiled big during her sideline interview as her team was being tied by a very average Italian team. April smiled with glee at her halftime chat with ESPN just after her uninspired and flat team gave up a goal in the 11th SECOND and then got even when Italy scored an own goal.

    Just when you thought it could not get any worse for an aging national squad who once boasted of world dominance, the U.S. Women looked eerily similar to the same team outplayed by Sweden in the second half of their first round WWC game and beaten 3-0 by Germany in the semi-finals. Even with some new college players on the field, the only real difference besides not having Hamm was that this was Italy, hardly a world power.

    Struggling tactically to break down the Italian defense, U.S players also continued to showcase the technical deficiencies exposed repeatedly in WWC-03. No matter how hard ESPN commentator, Wendy Gebauer tried to apologize and cover for the U.S. team’s play, even a novice could see that our team is in desperate need of an overhaul…from TOP to bottom. Gebauer cited burnout, “a long year” and other ridiculous reasons for the sloppy U.S. play; but no such rhetoric from the assistant coaches’ wife could excuse such an uninspired performance from the 3rd best team in the world. Could someone please tell me why ESPN employs the wife of the assistant coach of the US team to give us “analysis” of his team's performances? Are we supposed to believe that Gebauer can possibly be objective when it comes to her husband’s team? Ok, back on track…in short April must go. If April Heinrichs has a shred of decency in her, she will respectfully resign after this world cup and subsequent disaster against Italy….a team that did not even qualify for the 03 WWC.

    Here’s the deal folks, IF the U.S. had won the World Championship on October 12th at the Home Depot Center instead of watching it on TV then MAYBE we could excuse this latest embarrassment for the red white and boo. A world championship team parties for nights on end afterwards and may not have the legs for a game this close to the end of a WC. A world championship team does not have anything to prove against Italy and may have a let down after an emotional WC win. A world championship team might just play loose and undisciplined in the wake of the euphoria created by claiming the number one ranking in the world. However, a team that underachieved on the big stage to finish 3rd only 3 short years after losing the Olympic Gold would feel a sense of obligation to prove what they can do the very next chance they get… …That is what this would have done.... ONLY if it had not given up on its coaching staff, that is. The United States Women tied Italy tonight en route to making a much bigger statement about their future. This performance was an emphatic vote of “no confidence” for April Heinrichs and her trusty sidekick, Bill. No way this team loses the WWC AND lays an egg in its first opportunity for redemption if they respect this staff and want to play for them going forward. The players on this team have to have heard the rumors or at least the discussion of April’s dismissal and this was their first chance to stand up and fight for her job. Instead, they rolled over and showed her the door. It’s over and now we know for sure.

    As fans, can we forget the 16 losses over her 4-year career? Can we forget the miserable performances versus Canada (losing record and does anyone remember Canada in Columbus?), Japan (0-0 tie), Mexico (Parlow scores 2 in final minutes to salvage 3-2 win) and many others along the way to losses in the Olympics and WWC? Can we even begin to forgive the losses in the Olympics and WWC? Can we forget how Heinrichs overlooked and under-trained the likes of Bivens, Boxx and Wambach over the last 3 years while she invested mightily in Kleugal, Hucles, and Wagner...the latter three players who were completely insignificant in this last WWC? Of those 6 players mentioned, how is it that the ones with the least opportunity with the national team ended up starting in the biggest game of April’s coaching career and how much better would they have been IF April had invested in those players? Can we shake the realization that the German and Swedish players appeared more sophisticated and skillful in this past WC? Lastly, can we forget how uninspired the “best team in the world” played tonight with their coach’s job on the line against Italy in front of 15,000 of the Kansas City faithful? The answer to all of the above questions is NO. We can’t pretend any longer that this coach and her system from top to bottom isn’t broken. We can’t fool ourselves into thinking that there is hope for this team if things stay as they are.

    Above all, we are about to find out what U.S. Soccer thinks about women’s soccer in this country. If they make a coaching change, then they care about us. If they don’t make a change, despite tonight’s realization that these players have quit on this coach, then they don’t care about women’s soccer at all. If that turns out to be the case then we should all be prepared for more ties against Italy and more losses to Germany. April must go…and take a few of these players with her.
  5. paks

    paks Member

    Oct 5, 2003
    Eugene, Or
    Very good post Micro Scope. After watching tonight I was just shaking my head, I couldn't believe that we were having that much problem with Italy. April's comments at half time really bothered me, like she still didn't have a clue at what went wrong. The positive's for me tonight were the continuing improvment in the health of Shannon Mac, and the two youngsters. She has a long way to go but I liked Chalupny(sp?) on the left, she was willing to run at and take on defenders. They were playing for spots and you could tell they really wanted to make an impression. I hope we see more of them in the next 10 months.
  6. cl_hanley

    cl_hanley New Member

    Sep 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa
    Every time I watch the ladies play I am reminded within a matter of moments how poor their overall ball skills are. Poor passing. Poor trapping. Poor, telegraphed dribbling. Consistently poor decisions. Poor shots that are off frame as often as not. I'm not entirely thrilled with April either, but damn, it just seems like the veterans have deteriorated, or the competition in years prior was really that bad. I'm not sure that a simple change of coaching staff is going to get us back on track, though it may very well be a first step in the right direction. But the lack of skills, God Almighty, the lack of skills!
  7. Treetaliano

    Treetaliano Member

    Jun 29, 2002
    San Diego
    This match was not televised, reported, or cared about here in Italy...
  8. jc in nh

    jc in nh Member

    Jul 26, 2000
    Canterbury, NH
    Excellent post, Micro Scope! Welcome ... and I fervently hope you're correct about the way things are headed (although I have little faith that the folks holding the reins will make any changes before the Olympics). Fingers crossed, though. Otherwise - a very sad way for the vets to end their careers ...
  9. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    who cares too nobody cares that much, especialy when Marlin and Yankees games are going on right now
  10. ditch

    ditch New Member

    Jul 29, 2002
    St. Paul, MN
    Just to echo some of the statements here.

    just awful last night. April's got to go. I don't like this long ball crap. There are 5 in the back (defense + Boxx) who boot the ball up to the 3 front players (forwards + attacking mid). Occasionally Lilly does something. Foudy does next to nothing, primarily, I think, because she doesn't have the legs for this style of play. There was a stage in the Canada game for about 15 minutes when the US switched back to a build-up style and Foudy was effective in that system. If April wants to use the long ball, she's got to put a team out there that is suited to it. Youth and speed. Wagner is not a long ball player (unless you put her in Boxx's position and let her do the serving which would leave your defense exposed). You notice that when TR and Bivins were working on the right side, they were able to get up and down that flank more than foudy and get that part of the field involved. Wombach had a good game, and has the fire, desire and ability to run over people. I think she and Tarpley up top would be great. Especially in route 1 soccer.

    It's great to see Mac back on the field, Chalupny (sp?) played okay, but didn't bring more than Lilly on the left. Slaton on the left was also able to work with the left midfielder (Chalupny at that point) like Bivins and TR on the right, largely I think, because of her speed.

    I'm worried about the Mexico game. The announcers said that Sobrero is getting married the day before and seemed to imply that many (if not all) of the players will be at the wedding.

    Is it just me, or did the USWNT not run at all in the first half. There were always people just standing around--no runs into space, no runs with the ball (Wagner in particular doesn't seem to want to hold the ball or run with it).

    just my $0.02.

  11. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    In every 1000 great touches there might be one or two bad touches, in every 1000 wonderful passes there might be one or two bad passes, in every 1000 great decision there might be one or two poor decisions etc etc it happens to Man U, Real M, Barcelona etc if you have negative in mind toward the USWNT you will see it from different angle, you'll see one or two bad touches as if we do it the whole game. Lets we take alook at the last 6 matches we did, we outplayed them, we had about 65% average ball possesion, this impossible happen without skill, in fact we are the team w/ the best skill in the world, when you watch the game try to be cool, have a can of beer, be open minded and throw all hates you have in mind and judge the game as it is
  12. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    We don't do the long ball all the time like Norway or Canada did, we just do it occasionly, it depends on the situation at that point of time, every team does the long ball sometime, i watched Man U did that, i saw Gerry Neville sent a long ball to Ruud Van Nistelroy and so was Real Madrid, i saw Roberto Carlos kicked a long ball to Raul and almost got the goal, if there is situation where the def in unorganized situation or in the point where a forward is about to break the backline trap, we might as well send a long ball to that player, so it will always be in the game at any game in the world so, just except it or close your eyes when a player is about to kick a long ball
  13. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    beside that we still have the tittle as : the former two world Cup champ, gold and silver medalist, Algarve Cup Champ, Gold Cup champ and third best in the world, its not bad at all
  14. Ref Flunkie

    Ref Flunkie Member

    Oct 3, 2003
    New Hudson, MI
    Well with the current national team, they are lucky to get 50 good touches to every one bad touch. Either the rest of the world caught up real fast to this team, or they are so old and out of it that their skill is dropping rapidly. As per your suggestion of being open minded, I think we are being open minded and finding this team's flaws, other than the general public who still thinks the WNT is the greatest on earth and can't be beat. Did you see the Germany/US match at the WWC? I think the Germans had much more skill than the US.
  15. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth

    What skill are you talking about Ref, we had good/bad touches, good/bad passes, good/bad run of plays etc,and so were the Germans (as the matter of fact they gave away alot of balls), only we had more ball possesion in my opinion but, bad finishing, in term of skill, we had a lot of skill just as most of the team in that tournament.
  16. Elroy

    Elroy New Member

    Jul 26, 2001

    Ah, a fellow traveler. The lack of skills in the women's game leads to an inability to relax on the ball. That effects field vision and creativity. It certainly showed on the field.

    Some of this problem may begin in our youth programs. We emphasize team play at far too early an age - to the detriment of skill development. I once had an opportunity to secure a guest spot for the son of a Moroccan friend. He was eleven years old and had never played on a full sided team or in a match where uniforms were worn. He was absolutely lost on positioning himself within a team defensively, yet he was - by far - the most relaxed player on the ball. As a result, he saw the field and passed the ball where it should have been passed, he took players on, and he did not miss a tackle. He seemed confused by teammates who didn't make plays consistent with the run of play and the position of the ball. In short, he was way ahead of his American peers in skill and vision and behind on principles of team play. Guess which is easier to teach? Soccer skills are similiar to a foriegn language - the basics are best learned at an early age. The best way to teach these skills is to demonstrate them and let the children experiment with them until they are comfortable.

    This win, win, win mentality is even worse with the women. We are overloaded with " professional " coaches who need to have " secrets " to winning to recruit the best athletes. These " secrets " are generally tactical and IMHO discourage creativity. These coaches also have year around mortgages - and, imagine this, a belief in year round training. They are not evaluated or compensated for the players they develop, rather, they are evaluated by their record. A coach who loses a player to the next level is not praised, but is instead criticized about what he or she must have done wrong to lose that player.

    We need our best coaches at every level - not just competing with each other over the best of an improperly developed pool of players. We need truly vertical development organizations within our clubs that place proper value on player development.

    Our current NT staff is a part of the problem. They should be either retrained and refocused or replaced. We will not be able to sell women's professional soccer until it is as skillfully played by the women as it is by the men. There is no excuse for not meeting this standard.
  17. Anthony

    Anthony Member+

    United States
    Aug 20, 1999
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Join the Fan Club


    Do we have any tactic other than loft a ball up and try to out muscle an opponent?

    Is there anyone on this team who can string two passes together or dribble for more than 1 second?

    Can anyone actually play defense?

    I had been one of Heinrichs big supporters, but this is rediculous. She should take her visor to the LPGA.

    And while we are at it, time to ax a founder or two, light a fire under this team. (and yes, I know they were contractually required to bring the WWC team last night, so lets start with the next series of games).

    Millbret, Foudy, Lilly, thanks for the memories. Come by for the tribute game against Mexico.

    Fawcett, well no one else seems to know how to play defense so you can stay.
  18. TOTC

    TOTC Member

    Feb 20, 2001
    Laurel, MD, USA
    Just to echo a few things hard earlier.

    The U.S. women's team is disrespecting its heritage and its shield with performances like this. As was mentioned in the broadcast, the U.S. did not train before the game. How else can you explain a goal at 11 seconds of the first half? Horrible disorganization.

    (For the record, it is a world record for a women's match. The men, I think is around seven seconds; who's got a Guinness Book of World Records with them???)

    And as it turns out, the U.S. won't be training for the Mexico match, either; they'll be straggling in after Kate Sobrero's wedding!

    If JP says that these two friendlies were a sort of consolation prize for Dallas and Kansas City for not getting WC games, it's hardly a prize.

    Was a real explanation ever given for Hamm's absence, or was there an injury that was never explained?

    Does Aly Wagner look worse game after game?

    Does Tiffeny Milbrett need a shrink?

    Is The Wombat getting a reputation?

    Is it my imagination, or did Chalupny and Tarpley look really good out there?

    Is Wendy getting as critical as Gordon Maddux and Cathy Rigby were doing gymnastics on Wide World of Sports in the 80s?

    Now, my April rant.

    During halftime: "Their season really started Jan. 6. They've been at it 10 months."

    My reaction: "Perhaps that's the problem????"

    I think AH is losing touch with reality, much less her team. The pride is gone. The intensity is gone.

    The team has no jump, no initiative, no confidence.

    Countless times I begged and pleaded through the TV screen for a U.S. player to take on an Italian defender. Why was Tiffany Roberts the only one to do so?

    I believe, ultimately, there needs to be a sea change in WNT culture.

    It is a culture which has led to players marrying coaches, players hanging on beyond their usable years despite shockingly bad play, and activism for its own sake without realizing the implication of a free market.

    That being said, I think something has upset the applecart.

    I think it goes beyond coaching, beyond the wish to keep The Magnificent Seven together.

    Could it be the, ah, visor-wearing coach?

    I also believe there is a lack of professionalism here.

    It's not the idea of having a professional league, or training long hours like Hamm and others do, or even the deportment of the players.

    Instead, it's the professionalism of the COLLECTIVE that is lacking.

    The ethic of hard work and determination against the oddds has been replaced by a sense of entitlement and the hope of "I got your back, boo."

    The folly of that has been shown in spades the past eight weeks.

    Someone suggested a World League (similar to volleyball) of small tournaments around the globe featuring national teams, with Algarve Cup, Pacific Cup, the Nordic Cup, and an expanded Nike Cup as part of it.

    I don't think that's such a bad idea now.
  19. Elroy

    Elroy New Member

    Jul 26, 2001
    Judge against what.

    We are trying to sell our sport. To accomplish this, we need to offer a quality product. Watch a good men's match. The quality of play is clearly superior to even the best of women's matches. This may be b/c men have been playing for many more years or whatever, but our women's product is clearly inferior. There will be no league - even where there is considerable political pressure for one - where the product offered is inferior.

    The people who want us to stand pat do not recognize this.
  20. Elroy

    Elroy New Member

    Jul 26, 2001
    We want success.

    Many of those of us who are critical of our program are strong supporters of the women's game.
  21. sexysadie

    sexysadie Red Card

    Sep 29, 2003
    somewhere on earth
    Re: We want success.

    just as a mother will punish her child rather than ignore him/her. By the way i'll still supportive towards WNT untill the olympic, and see what happen after that...
  22. nsa

    nsa Member+

    New England Revolution; Boston Breakers
    United States
    Feb 22, 1999
    Notboston, MA
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The statistic that matters is the final score.

    Last night in Kansas City the USWNT had lapses in their play over the course of 90 minutes. Italy made them pay.

    Italy had lapses in play over the course of 90 minutes. The US did not make them pay. Milbrett tried to take down a satellite with a shot that simply needed redirection of the ball. Wambach tried to crush the ball when she had the time to place a shot by the 'keeper.

    These are the antics of individuals, not players on a team. They should watch hours of tapes of Maren Meinert and Birgit Prinz finishing goals and then celebrating - not trying to score a goal as a celebration.
  23. Jo

    Jo New Member

    Jan 15, 2000
    Is this right? Is the only reason the WNT is on ESPN (1 or 2) is because USSF buys the time?

    I'm not doubting your credibility, cachundo, but I'm a belt-and-suspenders type of person. I need at least 3 unrelated sources before I believe anything.
  24. Motterman

    Motterman Member

    Jul 8, 2002
    Orlando, FL
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I don't know about anybody else, but I was rooting for Italy in the last 10 minutes. I'd have never ever dreamed of doing this, but it was only because I want to see April fired immediately.

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