Which Current USMNT Player Has the Best One-on-One Skills

Discussion in 'USA Men' started by ScissorsKick, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. ScissorsKick

    ScissorsKick Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    VA
    Who can beat a defender one-on-one the best?

    One of the most essential skills an offensive player can have, especially at the international level, is the ability to take on a defender one-on-one. Who is currently the best US player at beating defenders off the dribble? Other national teams seem to be stacked with players with this skill, especially when you look at the top ten. The US doesn't seem to have very many players with this ability. Fortunately, it seems like Arena is looking more at offensive players who are faster and more able to beat defenders or maybe it is just the US game evolving. Regardless, who do you think from the current USMNT player pool has the best one-on-one skills on the team right now?
     
  2. Ronaldo's Idol

    Jun 13, 2004
    Probably Pat Noonan. He is very crafty on the dribble. But I think it speaks volumes about the dearth of one v one players on the USMNT that the best one v one player isn't a regular starter.
     
  3. ScissorsKick

    ScissorsKick Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    VA
    I agree! I think Pat Noonan is definitely at the top of the list. Noonan has done well at LM because he has the ability to run at defenders and consistently beat them off the dribble. That is what makes him such a threat.
     
  4. Heathens '87

    Heathens '87 Member

    United States
    Mar 4, 2004
    Michigan
    Club:
    RSC Anderlecht
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I realize he's the whipping boy for some, but Landon Donovan is perhaps the only player on the USMNT who has the ability to get a shot, regardless of who is defending him.

    Noonan is fine in MLS, but at the international level, he's yet to demonstrate that ability. I'd also question his speed. Beasley can be taken out with physical play, as can Dempsey. EJ isn't an on-the-ball type of forward, and neither is McBride. They both need service, but in different ways.

    For my money, I'd take Landon.........
     
  5. sidefootsitter

    sidefootsitter Member+

    Oct 14, 2004
    Landon can't dribble worth crap anymore.

    And the answer is ... Peter Philipakos... oh, wait, you said "national team"?

    Probably Claudio Reyna.
     
  6. DutchFootballRulez

    Jul 15, 2003
    Baltimore, MD
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Most of them have the Abilty. Its not who's the best Dribbler.
     
  7. Zivheads

    Zivheads New Member

    Dec 13, 2003
    Evanston, IL
    The american with the best ball skills is Freddy Adu. Too bad he can't do anything else. As far as the national team goes, my vote goes to Stevie Ralston. He's done some nasty things in one-on-one situations, with the most notable being on the setup to Pat Noonan's goal vs. Colombia.
     
  8. Heathens '87

    Heathens '87 Member

    United States
    Mar 4, 2004
    Michigan
    Club:
    RSC Anderlecht
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

    The question wasn't who can dribble the best, it was who has the best one-on-one ball skills. As the point in soccer is to get a shot or pass off, I'm not sure that dribbling has much to do with the question......you can dribble for crap and still get the shot off. You can dribble well, and have it end with a dispossession.

    Reyna is a good answer though.......
     
  9. todd_knode

    todd_knode New Member

    Jun 30, 2005
    San Diego via DC
    Landon can't dribble worth crap anymore? Where do you get that assumption from?
     
  10. Mr Martin

    Mr Martin Member+

    Jun 12, 2002
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I've seen JOB pull off some very nice 1v1 moves to get by an opponent. Those moves usually lead to a pass rather than a shot, since JOB plays deeper in midfield than Donovan usually does.

    Donovan has fine 1v1 moves, but I think his strength lies in his combination play with teammates and his movement off the ball.

    We have no one right now who can beat an opponent 1v1 the way Ramos could.
     
  11. ScissorsKick

    ScissorsKick Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    VA
    I've seen Noonan all out juke his defender several times. He seems to be one of the more consistent at this skill because he will go at a defender every time if the defender is the only thing between him and the goal. I'm not talking about a half move around a defender then a pass off before you get ate up. That seems to be the trend with a lot of the players.
     
  12. IUtwins

    IUtwins New Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    Nashville, TN
    I have to disagree. I believe it was the Columbia match (not sure) that Noonan beat his defender so often that they had to sub him out early in the game. Pat has deceptively simple moves and is strong on the ball. Also, he doesn't have the speed of Beasley or Johnson, but he is not slow. Like his moves, his speed is deceptive, and he uses what he has very effectively. I am looking for Noonan to really showcase at this Gold Cup and solidfy his position on the World Cup team for '06. Once he gains his confidence more at the international level, I believe he will excel just as he has progressed in his MLS career (1st yr - runner-up for rookie of the year, 2nd yr - tied for points leader with Amado G., 3rd yr - currently tied for lead in league goals with a game in-hand).... ok is it obvious I voted for Pat :D
     
  13. MarioKempes

    MarioKempes Member+

    Real Madrid, DC United
    Aug 3, 2000
    Raleigh, NC
    Club:
    Real Madrid
    I agree, I think it's JOB.
     
  14. Heathens '87

    Heathens '87 Member

    United States
    Mar 4, 2004
    Michigan
    Club:
    RSC Anderlecht
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

    ....and what level of team did Columbia bring?! It was a young and inexperienced team that we played, as I'm not going to sit and around and believe that we're 3-0 better than a Columbia, or that Pat can show-up WC-level talent to this degree.

    Noonan played well, but I don't believe the competition was much more than a typical MLS match. I've watched him play since his days at Indiana, and am a believer in his talent. But he's yet to show much on the international level, and the Gold Cup is a real opportunity/turning point for his national team career.

    The reality is that Noonan flat-out disappeared in his first WC qualifying start against Panama. From his interview on www.ussoccer.com.....

    ussoccer.com: You’ve appeared in six of eight games the national team has played this year, and you finally got your first World Cup qualifier under your belt. And a pretty interesting one at that, playing against Mexico in Mexico …

    PN: “Yeah, it was pretty interesting. It was a very intense, very cool atmosphere. I think you’re kind of in awe a bit when you’re watching the game, and then when you get on the field you forget about it. When I got out there, I was just trying to catch my breath because I was very winded. It’s tough to get in there late in the game and try to make something happen, especially with the altitude. I thought for that type of game I held my own.”

    ussoccer.com: You got a couple more sniffs against Guatemala and Costa Rica, and then you made your first World Cup qualifying start in Panama in very difficult circumstances. How did you rate that performance?

    PN: “It was definitely a different atmosphere. That was probably the worst I’ve been with the national team. The first half I just wasn’t sharp. I tried to get into the game as quick as possible, but just didn’t do it. The second half I did a little better holding the ball, but not my best performance.”

    ussoccer.com: For your first time, was it hard dealing with the short turn around time in games, the heat, the crowd, and all the other little distractions of a road qualifier?

    PN: “I don’t think so. There’s really no excuses. I was anxious and excited to get the start, and I just didn’t step up when I needed to. Those games are going to be quick-paced, and you have to be ready. Everyone has games like that; you just have to bounce back. It was good to be out there for an important victory.”
     
  15. Ombak

    Ombak Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 19, 1999
    Irvine, CA
    Club:
    Flamengo Rio Janeiro
    Nat'l Team:
    Brazil
    Pedala (do the step-over!) Hejduk!

    I did, however, vote JOB.
     
  16. voyager

    voyager Member

    Jun 10, 2004
    Frederick, MD
    Club:
    DC United
    Why in the name of all that is good and holy is Clyde Simms on this list? He's a good player but his one v one skills consist of passing the ball to an open teammate. Or sometimes an unopen teammate. Or even the other team.
     
  17. IUtwins

    IUtwins New Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    Nashville, TN
    I agree. That was a bad showing for Pat. He did improve during the second half, but was still well below where I think he can perform. However, concerning the Panama match, I do not think anyone played all that well. The person I thougt dissappeared for the longest amount of time was DMB. I sure hope Bruce finds a way to get DMB on the roster where he can produce results. I wouldn't mind seeing him play a few minutes up top. Also, in Panama, noone was successful 1 v 1. The field conditions were quite poor. Thus, 2 of our goals were from head balls and the other was a follow up from a poor save. I am anxious to see Pat on a field for the Gold Cup where he can run at some defenders. Overall, I believe (and hope!) that Pat is going to be one of the most stand out players to emerge from the Gold Cup.
     
  18. ScissorsKick

    ScissorsKick Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    VA
    Noonan and O'Brien were picked a lot more than I expected in this poll. I hope both really show what they can do during the Gold Cup. Donovan and Beasley are both just plain dangerous in open space.
     
  19. gaucho

    gaucho Member

    Dec 17, 2001
    NYC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Has to be Beasley.

    Is there a better guy on this team when it comes to using his speed and driblling ability to just blow by someone? Plus, he's just fearless when it comes to these situations.

    Donovan: does it well, but sometimes looks to pass first when he should go at a defender

    JOB: I love the guy, but I couldn't vote for him based on what he did three years ago.

    Noonan: Has promise, but how often has he created a scoring chance off the dribble in a big game? Beasley's done it in the WC, the Champs League, and WCQ.
     
  20. Geneva

    Geneva LA for Life

    Feb 5, 2003
    Southern Cal
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I voted for Noonan, but a great argument (probably a better one) could be made for Beasley. Too late to change my vote.

    Anyway, I saw Noonan vs. Colombia, and he really surprised me. Maybe they did have a B team, but he's the best I've seen in awhile in a USMNT game at trying and succeeding 1v1.
     
  21. IUtwins

    IUtwins New Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    Nashville, TN
    I believe DMB is better at beating his mark without the ball rather than with it 1 v 1. He does an excellent job of getting behind the defense with his speed. However, most of the world has figured out that he is blazing fast, but also extremely small. Thus, rather than let him get by, most defenders now opt to foul him. I voted for Noonan here because he can beat players 1 v 1 and still manage to stay on his feet. This, of course, is a size issue. I would love it if DMB had Buddle's size! He would be an even more dangerous player.
     
  22. Delta Blues

    Delta Blues New Member

    Jun 25, 1999
    King Willieville
    Not having seen JOB in an actual match for eons I'll pick Noonan. None of our other guys have that game, not even Landon't. (actually I think he has the ability, but not the heart) Beasley is just a push and run type strategy, and no one else except Mastro has the ball skills. Let me admit that Lewis can pull off the feat at times after a second thought.
     
  23. ScissorsKick

    ScissorsKick Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    VA
    After yesturday's match with Cuba, maybe Quaranta should now be included in this poll. I think he could certainly be one of the best five or six on the team.
     
  24. Treetaliano

    Treetaliano Member

    Jun 29, 2002
    San Diego
    1. Adu
    2. Philipakos
    3. Cakes
     
  25. SoccerMan94043

    SoccerMan94043 Member+

    May 29, 2003
    San Jose
    Club:
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    None of the above.
     

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