Friday, July 08, 2005
Thoughts from the USA - Cuba Gold Cup match
I'm surprised this didn't get more play in the mainstream press (read: non-sports press) because it's America vs. Cuba. Certainly I mean before today's events in London.

  • They played the Cuba national anthem before the game! That's gotta be a first in a recognized setting. I know that the Cuban baseball team played the Orioles in an exhibition game in 1999 but I don't know if the Cuban national anthem was played before the game at Camden Yards.

  • An interesting 3-5-2 for the US using the vaunted V formation. Telefutura says (I think) that Brad Davis is the point and that Bones is at forward. Five minutes into the game this is no longer the case as Brad is out left and DMB is pulling the strings.

  • Someone tell Tony Sanneh the game started.

  • The U.S. looks uninterested in the first five minutes. The three-man backfield looks weird.

  • Goal for Cuba. And they lead 1-0. Someone said (and I've spent 10 minutes looking for the link even though I work for the site) that if the Yanks didn't score a touchdown, it was because they were bored. Forget the touchdown, I'd just like to get the win.

  • Someone tell Tony Sanneh it's ok to jump for a ball.

  • Brad Davis! What are you doing shooting from 30 yards out!?!

  • Bones is by far the most skilled player on the field. It's a shame no one can seem to get him the ball.

  • 'Tino has looked pretty good so far. He's going hard after the ball and making some creative runs.

  • Ben Olsen? Hello? You there, lad?

  • Goal Clint Dempsey off a great Bones feed. Excellent replay confirms Clint is onside. 'Bout time we got a goal.

  • Tony Sanneh ... I know you want to be a midfielder, and you can cross the ball decently well with your left, but if I watch you out of position one more time, I'm taking back your kit.

  • This second half has been totally devoid of anything noteworthy except that we continue to miss wide open chances.

  • Looks like Il Bruce wants to win as The Talisman enters the game in the 65th.

  • Look, Frankie Hejduk drives me crazy, too, but nothing shows more why I love having him on the team then him delivering not one, but two great crosses all while MISSING HIS RIGHT SHOE! I found that incredibly impressive.

  • Great to see John O'Brien back on the field. A bit unlucky for Brad Davis to be the odd one out because he had an admirable game but Ben Olsen, I'm sorry it didn't work out.

  • Goal for Landon Donovan on a brilliant free kick from 20 yards out! My question is this ... if I saw Josh Wolff point at Wolff's right shoulder while looking at Donovan (put it in the left upper 90, he seemed to say), then how come no one on Cuba's team noticed that?

  • Uh oh, here comes the prison break. Goal for Bones (who deserves one tonight) on an assist from the Talisman.

  • Donovan's free-kick goal is what one would find if one looked up "back-breaking goal" in the dictionary (assuming that term were actually in the dictionary). Goal for Donovan on a pretty little number from Bones. Let's see Donovan's line: 25 minutes played, 2 goals, 1 assist, seven points. Nice fantasy numbers if you had him.

  • Wrapup: Everyone in the world knew we should win this game except the Cubans. Valiant effort by them but, really, we should have scored the touchdown Tino Palace predicted. I think Dempsey's miss almost rivals Vagenas' against RSL or what's his name from West Brom who missed off the goal line.

  • What we learned: The U.S. doesn't have the manpower to run a three man backline just yet. Il Bruce has not lost his mind calling up Quaranta but 'Tino is probably two years away from regular senior team callups. We can play well with our C team but we can't win with it. As goes Donovan, so goes the U.S. Beasley has developed tremendously since going to Holland. You listening, Eddie Johnson? Brad Davis has a future on the left side ... excellent crosses. Tony Sanneh? Done. Unless we need a really, really slow midfielder. Goalkeeper? Please don't get hurt, Kasey.
  • 2 Comments:

    Blogger incendiarymind said...

    I think the United States does have the manpower to run a three man backline - if it's the right three men. Tony Sanneh is too slow now to really cover enough ground but with three of our usual four, we could do it. Of course poor Bocanegra would probably be the odd man out.

    9:44 AM  
    Blogger maradawga said...

    I was trying to think of three guys who could run it. Pope, Gooch and Gibbs? I don't think Gooch and Gibbs could play out wide on the island and Pope is a center back only. All three of those guys are centerbacks.

    When Spector's healthy, with Gibbs or Gooch in the middle, Jonathan could play wide and so could Marvell Wynne, but Wynne won't be a factor until 2008.

    Jimmy Conrad? Not much of a wide back. I don't think Burciaga Jr. has the range to pull it off. Cherundolo might be able to play right with a Pope, Gooch or Gibbs in the middle but I still don't know who would play left in that scenario.

    10:25 AM  

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