Tuesday, September 11, 2012

On Tap: USA v Jamaica (the angry round)

If you're wondering why there's been a great blinking chasm where there would otherwise be a conglomeration of my pithy rejoinders on USA v Jamaica Round 1, well, there's a fairly simple explanation. I didn't see it. Still haven't, and I don't plan on watching it. I don't have BeInSport or whatever it's called, and anyway I was on call on Friday night. So, alas, it would be a tad disingenuous for me to wax poetic on a piece of poetry I've never read. And this particularly mishmash of poetic garbage sounds like it interests me as much as a new study on gerontology in the 21st century compressed into a documentary and narrated by Ben Stein. So there.

That being said, as soon as I saw the lineup I, like many of you, saw the bifocal issue. No width, no creativity. It's hard enough to play through the middle when a turnstile like Jose Torres is lost in his mind, floating off to an enchanted land of dinosaur-sized gillyflowers and marmalade-covered fruit bats. It's even harder when that jezebel isn't there at all and you've got a duo of destructive midfielders and Jermaine Jones, who seems to have lost his ability to sing and has decided to croak out one-liners that lose something in the translation.

Must win? Of course it is. If the US loses here tonight, Jurgen Klinsmann will become the most puzzling figure to ever coach the USMNT. To go from lavished with praise for a historic win in Mexico to reviled for a pitifully out-maneuvered four-day stretch in the span of a month would be a reversal too juicy, too immensely unforeseen to codify. Let's hope we don't have to worry about it.

In any case, I will be watching this one and chronicling the proceedings for The Shin Guardian. It'll be the same format as the live log I wrote for TSG for the Mexico game back in August. That is to say, I expect to be Brekkanizing The Fiscal tonight. Big time. Or else you're in for a meltdown in virtual ink. Grab the popcorn.

- Rebound. Just rebound.
- High stakes tonight. The boys know that of course
- Klinsanity does the analysis thing on Friday night
- Just don't die on me

- Will Parchman


[e]clectic said...

the thing i don't understand about the "must win" language is that Jamaica at home was ALWAYS a must win. win at home and steal away points where you can.

Will Parchman said...

Of course. But a loss to a Jamaica at home in the past hasn't had these potentially disastrous pre-hex ramifications tied to it in a long time. It was a must-win before in the sense a game against an inferior opponent is always a must-win. It's a must-win now because... well, more is at stake.

Joosey said...

Jermaine is going to come through big tomorrow. I always love his intensity and I think people have been too harsh in criticizing his performances lately. But mainly I just get the feeling he is going to show up in a major way tomorrow.

On a side note, I am from Waco, TX and a month or two back when I was at my parents house for a couple days, I was glancing at the old Trib. When I saw Will Parchman listed as the author of a story I did a bit of a double take. When the story was about soccer (I believe it was even about Midway High School soccer - my old team) I was floored.

When I checked the site here, I was floored again that this link between Waco and informed writing on soccer checks out. Small world I guess.

heythisisrobbie said...

11 points in the group gets us through, I think. A loss would be disastrous and even a tie would put us in a rough spot.

The hex should be much easier than this. All we have to do is finish 4/6 and beat New Zealand in a worst-case scenario.

Heading to Columbus in a few hours...biting my fingernails until then.

Will Parchman said...

Crazy. Small world indeed.

Joos said...

I'm not really concerned with a win, as history dictates the US is overwhelmingly more likely to win this game than Jamaica, no matter how depressing a team it is.

Winning impressively? Not likely. You take a look at the roster and can't really think of too many changes that would help. Dropping Gomez into the midfield? That's about all there is, and it's not particularly appetizing.

I suppose at this point I'm never going to understand Mo Edu's place on these teams. He's a defensive midfielder that brings little to nothing on the offensive half and is so sloppy defensively that he's not worth the time. Beckerman is flawed, as well, mostly because whatever athleticism he once exhibited is now all but completely drained from his body. At least he still has value as a pressure release and a generally smart player linking with more versatile midfielders. Not saying he should start, but for now he has a place on a 23-man roster.

The midfielders are almost all apples. Oranges and bananas forbidden. You'd think at some point there would be a need for players that bring something different, even slightly, from their teammates. If it's the 56th minute and something needs to change, and your only choices on the bench are apple or apple, the choice is made for you. I suppose we should be thankful Zusi at least made the roster.

It's not so much the exclusion of one player as it is the exclusion of a large group of similar players. I don't particularly care about the varying opinions of Diskerud, Feilhaber and Kljestian and their soccer brethren, but that it seems to be pulling teeth to get even one of their ilk selected to the team should be cause for concern.

One solitary case that is worth addressing directly is that of Eric Lichaj. Though not a solution to midfield polarity, he's an effective player forward and backward, and the reality that he can't make the team even with Timothy Chandler doing Timothy Chandler things sounds too far-fetched to be true, but reality sometimes has a way of kicking you in the face like that.

dikranovich said...

edu is not in the starting lineup, williams is and so is zusi and jft.

4-0 USA double down

Greg Seltzer said...

I'm not in love with the line-up construction. I'll go with 2-0.

dikranovich said...

danny williams very strong first half, zusi and cherundolo have been fantastic, but my player of the first half. TAYLOR TWELLMAN!!! very refreshing and insightful in the booth tonight. the left side has not been bad either.

dikranovich said...

reality #4 coach klinsmann, he lacks composure and anyone that saw the interview at halftime could see this.

a win is a win is a win. but dang gone, zusi was hawking the ball, and you dont take that player out of the game, thats ridiculous.

jozy, very poor performance. this team really lacked composure down the stretch and motivational speakers aint gonna fix that.

im tired of jermaine jones and all his BS. he acts like he is the captain out there. captain ahab!!!

dikranovich said...

reality #6 the redskins got RG3 and that means big trouble for the rest of the NFL.

kids gonna make a final table at the big one in vegas also, before it is all said and done.

heythisisrobbie said...

Before I start, great post Joos.

This team is absolutely killing me. I don't trust them to take a point in a do-or-die situation against Guatemala. There is no creativity, no width, and no inspiration it seems.

We need a creative mid, plain and simple. Diskerud can play that role while still being conservative and deep lying.

Donovan will give us width on one side, and sliding Fab J up to the other will help over there.

Lichaj can play LB, unless you want to slide Boca out there and put Gooch / Goodson at CB.

The last change needed is some explosion off of the bench. Shea isn't an international caliber player. Gatt or Gyau would be absolutely ideal for this.

Big changes, I know, but they are ALL needed. This team as constructed now won't do anything against decent competition, and will still struggle against the Guatemala's of the world. Something needs changed.