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BSL: USMNT 4


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#21 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 08:42 AM

One other potential for tonight is to see Morrow in place of Villafana.



#22 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 07:06 PM

Deadspin: French Guiana Says Fuck It, Starts Ineligible Player In Gold Cup 

 

CBS Sports: USA vs. Martinique live stream info, TV channel: How to watch USMNT in Gold Cup online
http://www.cbssports...old-cup-online/



#23 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 07:49 PM

Well the game hasn't even started and I already give Arena a big plus. He is clearly doing what he should. He changed just about everything but Cuzan. He is giving the young players a shot to see what they can do. He did go with the 4-4-2 and he put some serious speed on the field. Other than missing Yedlin (none of the Euro based players are called in) this is about as fast a team as we can go with.

 

So here's how it looks:

 

DEkrX4iUIAA0i27.jpg


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#24 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 07:52 PM

Surprised about Dwyer, but looks good.  What I like is that with the A team not here, you are seeing the overall depth of the National program.



#25 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 07:52 PM

Only two field players from the Panama match - Acosta and Gonzalez are starting.



#26 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 07:56 PM

Surprised about Dwyer, but looks good.  What I like is that with the A team not here, you are seeing the overall depth of the National program.

A bit but Dwyer has played 180 minutes the last week and neither Agudelo or Morris have started a game yet. I think Arena is looking for the speed up top and if nothing else that will really wear on the Martinique back line and open up some space for Dwyer to sub in and exploit.  I also think that Dwyer has done plenty the last two matches to solidify his inclusion on the WC qualifying rosters. That makes the front line now to include Dempsey, Altidore, Dwyer, and Wood. Probably only going to carry five so Arena wants to see both Agudelo and Morris more to figure out whose in and whose out.


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#27 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:02 PM

First half ends 0-0. Some thoughts.

 

1. The US was all over Martinique the first 30 minutes. Zardes was really strong wide left and had numerous great balls into the box. Morris and Agudelo worked well together but neither could find the net.

 

2. Mintues 30-40 did not go as well. Martinique starter pressing more forward and have two really good chances. Cuzan had great positioning to make a key save. 

 

3. The last 5 minutes the US came on again but still just couldn't find that one special pass or shot. 

 

Cuzan - solid

Lichaj - Played quite well both defensively and pushing forward. We will see him at RB more.

Gonzalez - solid

Hedges - ok but made a couple of week defensive plays

Morrow - fine

Arriola - covered a ton of field and several really good balls into the area

Acosta - much better than Saturday and really really good on corners

Zardes - speed causing all kinds of trouble for Martiniques left side. Had one shot he should have buried.

Roldan - in control and passing well for his first start

Agudelo - good energy and decision making, but same story for him. He looks good. He works hard. He makes all kinds of great passes. But he just can't seem to find the finish.

Morris - speed is hurting the right side of the defense.

 

Bottom line is Martinique is no slouch but I just don't see them hanging for 45 more minutes. Shoot we have had eight corners to their one. If we can get one early in the half we may push in several more. 

 

Second half key - We must NOT come out flat the first five minutes. We have a historically bad time the first five minutes of the second half. Not tonight, please!


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#28 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:10 PM

So close! Morris.



#29 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:15 PM

US! Goal! 53rd minute...



#30 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:16 PM

Former Terp Omar Gonzalez...



#31 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:26 PM

Morris in the 63rd.... 2-0!



#32 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:27 PM

A quick answer... 2-1....



#33 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:36 PM

And now tied.... 2-2  74th minute.



#34 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 12 July 2017 - 09:38 PM

A minute later... Morris with his 2nd... 3-2 USA.



#35 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 09:16 AM

Well it wasn't the best match but they did get the result and they did move into first in the group. Tied with Panama on points and goal differential, but have scored the most goals. Winning the group has a bid advantage over second going into the knockout stages! So here are my thoughts last night. Going to make it simple like Fox is doing. Did the player help or hurt their chances at getting included in the next round of qualifying matches.

 

Cuzan - Minus. After two good matches, he showed why many are concerned with his game. He made a poor attempt at the second Martinique goal. And those mistakes have been coming more frequently the last two years. You MUST make that save.

Hedges - Neutral. Had some good moments and some not so good. Closer to minus than plus though.

Gonzalez - Neutral. Ok defensively. Added a bit to the attack and did score.

Morrow - Neutral. Good enough to warrant some more looks.

Lichaj - Big plus to me. Very good 1v1 defending and added a lot to the attack.

Roldan - Neutral. Did just fine but didn't really shine.

Acosta - Neutral. Much better than against Panama and his service on free kicks were really good. Still needs to play quicker.

Zardes - Plus. Added so much to the wing attack. His speed caused all kinds of trouble for the defense. And he maintained that pace for pretty much the entire match. Several great balls into the box. Dare I say "he's baaaackkk"?

Arriola - Neutral. Did ok supporting the defense. Was better in supporting the attack. But he had two chances and did poor with them both.

Agudelo - Minus - worked hard, positional play was good, some good passes. But man the guy can't finish.

Morris - Big Plus - speed is so deceptive, was always making dangerous runs and his timing was outstanding. But he is a forward and they are there to score goals. He did .....twice!


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#36 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 06:10 PM

CBS Sports: USA vs. Martinique in Gold Cup: Takeaways as USMNT produces another poor showing
http://www.cbssports...r-poor-showing/



#37 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 06:38 PM

SI: Speed bumps on the USA's road to striking Gold 



#38 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 05:34 PM

SI: Like USA, Mexico tops Gold Cup group, lacks overall sharpness

 

SI: USA's first meeting vs. Nicaragua carries big Gold Cup implications
https://www.si.com/p...arena-cleveland



#39 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 07:15 PM

I cringe that the author of the last SI article brought up Chris Wondolowski as a potential call up. I love Chris I love the way he works. But he is not an international level player. Never was. Never will be. We have much better attacking options than him. Shoot even Agudelo offers a lot more than Chris.

 

Bottom line - We have Dempsey, Altidore, Morris, Dwyer, Agudelo all in form for the knockout stages. There is zero reason to bring in Wondo. ZERO!


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#40 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 15 July 2017 - 10:54 AM

Hard for me to determine a lineup for tonight. So much depends on how Arena plans to finish the rest of the tournament. The key being who he plans to call in and IF he plans to play them in the quarters/semis/final?

 

For example, lets talk the front line. I really want to see a duo of Morris and Dwyer. That is the pair I would put out there tonight. The premise being that Arena probably calls in Dempsey and/or Altidore and plays them in the quarters. However, if he plans to save those two for the semis and final then I would play Dwyer and Agudelo tonight and go with Dwyer and Morris for the quarters. 

 

You have the same type of consideration when talking the midfield. Is he planning to bring in Bradley and/or Nagbe? I suspect both. But again being in the middle of their club season do they play all three of the knockout matches or just two?

 

The back line doesn't really have the same issue because the key missing guys are all European based and he isn't calling any of them it. So time to put Miazga in and see what he can do. 

 

As for keeper, I sure hope to see Hamid tonight. Cuzan was unacceptable against Martinique and this has been his problem for awhile now. Plays fine to good for a couple of matches (great in the case of his game against Panama) then throws up a stinker. You simply can't have that kind of player in the net. They get so few chances that they have to be just about perfect. He wasn't.

 

So in a vacuum not knowing what Arena plans here's my best shot at tonight.

 

1608052_USA.jpg

 

I would play this as a 4-2-2-2 but depending on the flow would quickly move it to a 3-5-2 with a diamond midfield. Besler/Miazga/Lichaj in the back should be adequate coverage and it moves Villafana more into an attacking mode (his better attribtues anyway) but he is rested and has the energy to track back for support on the left side of the defense. Bedoya concentrates on defense anyway and McCarty as the dmid will control possession. Rowe would be combining with McCarty to move the ball forward either attacking forward passing left to Zardes, overlapping on the right with Lichaj, or attacking dead at the defense with the two forwards. Morris's speed will create lots of room on the wings and give Dwyer freedom to find space anyplace the defense is weak.

 

Bottom line we should earn a clean sheet tonight and put at least 3 in the net.


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