Post #181
Wednesday July 8, 2015 5:28am

Joined Dec 2014
Total Posts: 97
Disjointed performance. Didn't understand the Wondo sub, why not AJ? Zardes looked particularly out of place for me besides the one run he had towards the endline and crossed it in...Just a lot of unnecessary turnovers. Beckerman a majority of the game looked out of place - he just couldn't keep up. Lots of concerns but when I look at the bench I see very few solutions.

I would like to see Morales at DM. I simply don't think we can keep letting this fast paced physicality get the best of us in the midfield. The turnovers are going to kick us in the ass.

Post #182
Wednesday July 8, 2015 11:26am

Joined Dec 2013
Total Posts: 954
Crap performance. I'll give some credit to Honduras for that. Not sure why a few people are specifically calling out the bad subs after a crap performance like that.

Chandler was bad. I made the decision after the last USMNT game to stop being a defender of his. Surely, subbing him out was a reasonable decision. So, you preferred Garza to Evans? I can't see Garza being much of an upgrade from Evans. Remember, at this point in the game we're trying to win so it's not about youth development.

Wondo? Yeah, I think he blows, but it's not like him replacing Jozy was a big deal either way.

Zusi? Fresh legs. Better defender than Zardes. Mediocre performance in his cameo, but on this night mediocre makes him better than most of our team. Still say, would you rather have Zusi or Zardes today at outside mid to win a competitive match. . . easily Zusi for me. It will be interesting to see if Juergy can turn Zardes into an outside mid. Arena tried him there a lot, but he's generally settled into a forward w/ the Galaxy. I think everyone agrees he's a better forward, but I get that there can be moving parts in a lineup.

Post #183
Wednesday July 8, 2015 11:36am

Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts: 3,723
My takeaways.

Jozy needs a break. He just looks bad right now. Dempsey bailed him out on one miss but he kept having possesion in and around the box and did nothing with them. Trying to be too cute right now.
Arjo/Wondo- How did WOndo pass him on the depth chart? Is everyone ok with this? Kind of ridiculous if you ask me.
Beckerman- He sucked. Its ok to say it people. We give him all the credit when MB plays good. So when we cant control the ball and continually turn it over in our half/midfield he should get the blame. This is why some people (myself included) dont like seeing him out there. Give me Morales (or DWill post Gold Cup) any day of the week.
Yedlin- Not his best game. Missing that goal may have cost him a loan deal. Hopefully it doesnt hurt hs confidence. He was bad in defense but my god is he fast and his recovery time is insane. Him vs Najar a couple of sequences was fun to watch.
Zardes- I was ok with his performance. Thought he tracked back enough. Had some dangerous runs. To me he still seems to be better as a 60-70' sub so he can explode. Maybe without Jozy he'll link up better.
Fab- Is it me or does he look gassed every game? Seriously does he not play 90' in bundesliga. He's easily our most gifted player but he just fades every 2nd half.
Chandler- I dont understand the hate. I thought he did extremely well getting forward. Had 1-2 bad crosses but he got in a position to make them. Also when the US played awesome in the 1st half it was on his side with him continually jumping up to maintain possesion and stop counters.
Brooks/Alvardo- I thought Brooks was awesome. Very composed. Made some big clearances and was very calm with his passing. Alvardo was average. Yes he got beat badly for that goal but that happens to everyone from time to time. Honduras didnt get many great scoring chances (dangerous passes into the 18, shots inside the 18) and this pairing was a big reason why.
Guzan- Looked like a stud goalie when called upon. Even looked like he was close to saving that goal. Cut down the angle perfectly and it was just a great shot. Stood his ground all night and shored up the rebounds he was giving up vs Guatemala. Also had great command of his box and made great decisions coming out to stop potential breakaways at least 3 times I recall.
Dempsey was obviously MOTM as those goals were perfect but to me the 3 key guys were Guzan, Brooks, & Dempsey

Post #184
Wednesday July 8, 2015 1:18pm

Joined Oct 2013
Total Posts: 1,065
Original post from skangles

So you are friends with Salvadorans and you have an uncanny ability to accurately predict results. Are you sure that you're not directly responsible for the 22 suspensions handed out to El Salvador?

Not to speak to that, but I am wondering if there is any point at which the match fixing is so pervasive (and 22 people seems pretty pervasive to me) where the national team itself is kicked out of competitions. To paraphrase Casino, if the Salvadoran federation did know what was going on, they were in on it. If they didn't know, they were too dumb or blinded to see what was going on and allowed for an atmosphere in which this could happen. I know Concacaf has rea$on$ for wanting El Salvador in this tournament (their first Gold Cup since the scandal), but I am frankly surprised they weren't banned.

Post #185
Wednesday July 8, 2015 1:25pm

Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts: 1,036
Zardes was ok. Thought it was one of his better performances on the defensive end of things, but was pretty bad in the offensive third. Tons of stupid turnovers when he tried moves that wouldn't work in college.

Brooks is weird to me. He seems to mentally drift early in.the game, but is then nails when the pressure increases at the end. I thought he was borderline dominant in the last 20 minutes after being shaky in the first half.

Don't know what was up with Jozy.

I can't remember a worse collective performance in terms of basic passing, touch, and communication among players on a fairly veteran team. I lost track of how many times the US wasted a potentially dangerous attack with a pass that was hit behind or in front of someone or was under/over hit. Numerous shakedown clearances. The fundamentals were lacking for nearly everyone.

Charleston, South Carolina
Post #186
Wednesday July 8, 2015 1:27pm

Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts: 1,408
Bradley was fine. Chandler was awful for me. Out of position defensively, giveaways, odd decisions on the ball. I was ready for Evans to come on in half time and stop worrying about getting forward as much. Jozy was just bad. He doesn't need to start next game. I can understand the Wondo sub but I'm wondering why ArJo wasn't called on. Zardes was fine, could be a little more creative in the final third.

I want Morales next game, Beckerman had an unusually poor game for his standards, meaning recently he's done very well. When he was actually in the position to make a stop, he typically did, but he was so out of position. I want Jozy benched.

West Palm Beach
Post #187
Wednesday July 8, 2015 2:22pm

Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts: 1,322
Well I am personally a little surprised that we ended up getting 3 points out of that match. Honduras played extremely nasty and extremely fast. Always a very tough combination. On top of that they had 5 defenders that were constantly behind the ball, giving us very little space, until we got the goal. On top of THAT the refs called a game that was tailor made for how Honduras was playing. Refs allowed way to much dirty play by the Hondurans. It really is criminal how Brooks got a yellow on that play, and the Honduran player that kicked Yedlin (which was his third aggressive foul in a 5 minute span) got nothing. Further that same player for Honduras later had a pretty dangerous foul against Dempsey, still no yellow. Just blows my mind. Then that run by Najar where he forgot about the ball for a second, pushed Yedlin to the ground, etc. Not even a foul on that. Or the sequence when someone on our team passed the ball and right after they passed it a Honduran blind sided him and took him out like he was Ray Lewis. 1' later our guy runs into the back of someone while they still had the ball and we get a foul call (when they got nothing). Or how about the first corner we got, when all the players are jostling for position and as soon as the ball was kicked the ref blows the whistle and calls the foul on us (this was shortly after Yedlin was kicked).
So despite all of that we still pulled out a result against one of the better teams in the tournament (a World Cup team)...I'll take it.

As for the players. I know people getting on Altidore, but outside of the 2 set piece headers from Dempsey, he was equally as bad. I think it was more of a result of how Honduras was playing, but also some of it has to do with the 2 really never playing up top together much. Even last summer in the lead up to the World Cup There was only one maybe 2 games where they played up top, other than that Dempsey has played with him but as a Wing (4-2-3-1). I think the 2 are our best 2 Forwards without a doubt, but as of right now they just don't play well. I also don't like how Dempsey combines with Bradley when he is up top. They don't complement each other well. I still think this team will be better off with Dempsey on the wing (Zardes coming on in the 2nd half for either Dempsey or Altidore), Let Dempsey make some of his darting runs and give him some more 1v1 on the wing instead of 1v1 in the middle occupying the same space as Jozy and Bradley. Just so congested in the attacking third with those 3. Unfortunately they don't mesh well, it also makes for a LOT of space with 2 attacking Wings that get forward very well, but don't defend that great. Why Honduras had so much space. Maybe get Mixx in there to link Beckerman and Bradley. Like a 4-1-4-1. Dempsey and Yedlin on the wings, Beckerman in the back.
Some of the problem with Altidore and Dempsey playing together up top is neither are players that start inside and push out wide. Altidore likes to play in the middle and Dempsey is best when he is able to dart inside from a wide position or play as a second striker (kind of an advanced CAM/false 9). But that encroaches on Bradley's role/territory. Bradley likes to make those darting runs through the middle from a deeper lying position. In terms of how this team works, I think Dempsey is really the worst in terms of cohesion (even though I'll take him over Altidore if you are just talking talent v talent). He just doesn't fit well with 2 wings that get forward and make runs (which Bradley does a good job of getting them the ball on those runs over the top), Altidore also does a good job of holding it up and allowing those guys to make those runs and passing it to them.
I also don't like Zardes link up play with Johnson, or really his final touch at all. There were a few occasions that Johnson or someone else would pass Zardes the ball and Johnson would make a run on the outside, where all Zardes has to do is one touch it to him and Johnson is off. Zardes would hold the ball up and allow Honduras to crash down on him and give him no options but to pass back. Which is really one of the problems I see often in the MLS is bad link up play with 1-2 touches. Kaka does that all the time, someone will pass him the ball and have a clear alley to make a run, Kaka will get the ball and 1 touch it to where he thinks the guy should be making the run, only the guy will pass him the ball and stop.
I really like the progression Yedlin is making. He is definitely a Midfield player. His crossing, passing, etc while still having plenty of room to improve and still needing to get better is so much further along than it was this time last summer. Hope he continues to progress at Tottenham (GAG).
I thought Chandler did well, he and Yedlin make a good tandem on the Right side.
I think there is a good chance that the back 4 we saw last night will end up being our back 4 in 2018. I just hope they can get a LOT of time together between now and then. Kind of settle on that back 4 and just let them grow together and learn where and how they will play (cohesiveness is important for the backline).
I think barring injury there are 3 locks for 2018. Brooks, Yedlin, Bradley.

As far as laziness goes. People jump on Altidore. Dempsey was worse. There was one play in the 2nd half where Zusi had the ball and passed it to Dempsey, only Dempsey was just walking away from him right by the defender who intercepted the pass. One of the most lazy plays I have ever seen. Led to a great chance by Honduras.
Post #188
Wednesday July 8, 2015 2:28pm

Joined Oct 2013
Total Posts: 3,260
@msantoine- I'm ok with it, Wondo should be starting. Use his runs to tire out the defender- then bring on Jozy to batter them with his power and pace.

As far as Johansson goes, he plays the Deuce role, so until Dempsey gets benched, it may be hard to see where he gets his chance to play.

John Brooks can play better than that.

Post #189
Wednesday July 8, 2015 3:02pm

Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts: 3,723
Original post from hamsamwich

@msantoine- I'm ok with it, Wondo should be starting. Use his runs to tire out the defender- then bring on Jozy to batter them with his power and pace.

As far as Johansson goes, he plays the Deuce role, so until Dempsey gets benched, it may be hard to see where he gets his chance to play.

John Brooks can play better than that.

I just cant get behind Wondo starting. He just sucks against halfway decent teams. He looked over matched against Honduras. Id rather see us o to a 4-5-1 and let Dempsey play underneath AJ or go to no real striker and have a 4-3-3 with an interchangeable front 3 (Dempsey, Zardes, Agudelo after group stage)

Post #190
Wednesday July 8, 2015 3:23pm

Joined Oct 2013
Total Posts: 3,260
I'm fine with Zardes up front. It's just too static with both Clint and Jozy together. And unlike usagunner, I don't think Dempsey has the legs anymore to play out wide, although it would solve a lot of problems. I'm not gonna beat the Wondo thing to death. We just don't need two hold up guys with the amount of chances and possession we have. We need to get in behind at times with better runs. If people want to see Zardes then let him play up there. I think Clint and Aron are too similar to play together, tho I'd like to be proven wrong. It would be technical that's for sure.

Is Bedoya more injured than we think? I expected to see him come on as the sub, and them it was Zusi.... Not sure what's going on there, but it's hard to see Bedoya suddenly just playing a lot. He's got to work himself back in.

West Palm Beach
Post #191
Wednesday July 8, 2015 3:57pm

Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts: 1,322
He might not have the legs anymore to play out wide. Donovan certainly lost that ability at the end of his career. Having watched Dempsey last night, I don't think his legs are to that point yet, while they certainly are getting close and certainly not what they used to be.
But if he doesn't have the legs anymore, I am ok with either Dempsey or Altidore not starting. And get the best pairing up there. They may be the best 2 (and definitely are in my mind) FW's we have, but they so far have not shown to me to be the best pairing combo. I wasn't impressed with Agudelo and ArJo in the 2 friendlies, but that pairing is better than Dempsey and Altidore. Even though I think Dempsey and Altidore are better.
Maybe try Dempsey with Agudelo/Wondo or ArJo with Altidore.
Personally I like the ArJo/Altidore combo (the idea of it). Want to see that, but know that Dempsey is going to get the start.
So really it's either Dempsey/Altidore or Dempsey/Wondo (although I don't think Wondo is in JK's plans to start so Agudelo probably has a better chance of starting a game, even though Wondo is the sub...just think that's what JK has in mind with Wondo as a super-sub to come in and poach a goal).

Unfortunately Agudelo isn't here for this tournament.
Post #192
Wednesday July 8, 2015 4:05pm

Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts: 952
I thought the ref allowed way too rough of play by both teams. The Hondurans were rougher than us in general but we had our share of rough play. I think we ground out a win despite looking fatigued and disjointed from the start. We often seem to start out this way, maybe JK overdoes things a bit in training.

Backline did not play well. I understand why JK wanted Beasly out of retirement. I am guessing we see him for the knockout rounds. Chandler had some moments but should not be our starter going forward. Alvarado has great potential but Gonzo is simply better right now.

Midfield needs at least two possession type guys. Either Zardes or Yedlin should be a sub next game with Mix starting. That way Beckerman and Mix can retain some possession for us.

Forwards: I am guessing we see Aaron and Wondo next game. Wondo had a couple of beautiful one touch passes to keep attacks going but didn't do a lot other than that. We spent way too much time defending.

Know Nothing
Post #193
Wednesday July 8, 2015 4:21pm

Joined Jan 2013
Total Posts: 1,768
My takeaway: Winning ugly is still winning

Yesterday it looked like we were playing a 4-1-4-1 which left way to much room in the center of the pitch in front of our central defenders. Our forwards were too static which allowed them to keep their shape easily .

No problems with the defense, though IMO ream should start over Alvarado...just a preference. Individually they played well and for the most part were cohesive. The breakdown was that they got little to no protection from what was a non existent midfield. Brooks and FJ were good, Alvarado okay and TC does look more and more like a headcase.

Midfield...Beckerman is good when we control the lions share of the possession but easily gets lost in wide open matches. I still maintain that Bradley and Deuce cannot coexist in the center of the field unless Bradley plays the defensive anchor.

No complaints on Zardes or Yedlin as they did what they were supposed to do...and props to Yedlin for not disappearing after repeated attempts by Honduras to kick him off the pitch.

I liked the Wondo sub...I think he did more with possession in the 30 minutes he was on than Jozy did. Plus he made intelligent runs that occupied the defense. Jozy and Deuce were always too close to each other making them easy to mark and limiting options. As for Deuce, not great but did what he is supposed to.

With Haiti next I would like to see the following:

Evans, Brooks, Ream, Garza
Mix, Bradley
Yedlin, ArJo, Zardes

West Palm Beach
Post #194
Wednesday July 8, 2015 4:25pm

Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts: 1,322
Arjo as a CAM? switching out 3 in the backline?
and people get on JK for experimenting. I'm glad some of us aren't the coach.
Post #195
Wednesday July 8, 2015 5:09pm

Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts: 3,723
Original post from USAGunner

Arjo as a CAM? switching out 3 in the backline?
and people get on JK for experimenting. I'm glad some of us aren't the coach.


Regarding the back 4. Most of the "lapses" came due to the quick counter. When Honduras is coming back down the field on a quick counter and get a decent shot or corner its more the midfields fault then the defenders. The #6 is supposed to swallow those up. I dont get why Beckerman gets a free pass. All I heard from people, Jurgen included is that he needs to start as he lets Bradley roam and he can clean up in front of the defense. He was invisible yesterday.

Also for all calling for Evans to replace Chandler you do realize they scored after we made that swap. I know they scored from the left and ultimately took Alvardo to school but did you notice Brooks was no where to be seen. Was it because he was covering for Evans? I dont think thats a coincidence

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