Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Your USMNT Line-Up

Gosh, just take a guess how I feel about all... this. Ratings will go up at MLSS after the match.

- Greg Seltzer


Spencer Smith said...

I know what changes I would make, but what specifics are you upset about? My main qualms are no room for Lee Nguyen, or Gil on the bench even.

dikranovich said...

This is the formation we want. Look at how the field looks smaller with this lineup. Very nice spacing with the 3-5-2.

You see two forwards , then you expect 4 midfielders, but there is an extra one.

And in defense, you get three center halves. DC United representing tonight.

Hey, when the wingback, DY, attacks he has two defenders between him and his goal, the right center back, and the center center back. In a 4-4-2' when he attacks from his wingback spot, he only has a right center back between him and his own goal.

Chile play three at the back, so hopefully we can learn some lessons from them tonight, and maybe show them a couple suprises of our own.

Bobby woods is a good defender, and thats what we need out of our strikers tonight, is strong high defense, and the legs to come back to the ball, then spring on the break.

Unknown said...

Bobby Wood. WHY!!!!

Greg Seltzer said...

@ Spencer Smith:

Gosh, where do I even start? Ummm... the formation has all sorts of problems for my taste, Jones as CB, Jones as the middle CB in a 3-man backline, Besler having to cover to the touchline, making Mix play as a DM, Bradley moved all around again, Shea as wingback, Wood starting when he does not play for his club and so on. Four years on, I really do not believe Klinsi has a plan.

dikranovich said...

one thing to remember, the formation is not really everything. its the roles the players have within and how they perform those roles.

this formation can be a little fast and loose, but it can also constrict, and tighten up.

opportunism is the American way, and that what this formation is all about.

chile hit two nice crosses into a tricky spot, we are lucky to be up 2-1, but that's only in one sense, because we could also be winning 4-2, or even 3-nil.

we need more critical discussion on why this formation needs to be ingrained.

Greg Seltzer said...

Okay, I will bite.

1 - Nobody said the formation is everything. But it is far more than nothing, as evidenced by the continuous problems caused by Chile down into the flank corners and at the back post.

2 - You are totally contradicting yourself here. Obviously. Your first thought was most accurate. Clearly.

3 - Word salad.

4 - Yeah, and we could also be playing this game in a wise manner and crushing this B team as we should.

5 - Who is we? I need to discuss why it should be jettisoned now, at halftime of this game.

JBS said...

Per usual, the opposing team doesn't win so much as the US endeavors to lose. There is so much space and close to zero organization in the midfield.

JBS said...

As an additional side note, why Wondolowski still gets called into camp when it's been clear for three or more years that he just doesn't have the capacity to raise his game to an international level either speaks volumes about the dearth of attacking talent in the US system, or Klinsi's often baffling, more-than-occasionally disastrous team choices.

dikranovich said...

I think there were some real positive takes from this game. losing was not one of them.

the introduction of will trapp was however. this kid is a scraper and he has real nice vision. we got a real player on our hands with this one.

come on fellas, when are we going to learn that lateral balls are big no no. brek shea too, he should know better. brek shea is an enigma though, that is for sure.

3-5-2 USA 2 chile 1

4-4-2, USA 0 chile 2

more to come....

dikranovich said...

why is the 3-5-2 so right for us?

its a thinking mans formation, it requires in game analysis. what better way to teach the youth of our country, than to get them thinking in such a critical way, about things like support, and recognition. this is a deeper understanding. don't forget, Ronald koeman, dutch master at Southampton, says it does not take long to get players playing a new system. he is thinking in terms of weeks for a pro team.

if there is really one position we have an abundance of talent in, it is central defense, and after that, it is defensive midfield. this formation contains five of those positions.

the U/20s paint a clear picture as well. look at the talent from our central defenders. mizaga, carter-Vickers, EPB was not even on display, and ill bet you all, conor Donovan outshines the above mentioned, in his first season in MLS.

on top of that, you get a revelation like Russell canouse, and emerson Hyndman and you can maybe see some merit in a 3-5-2, if you are not already having a schitzoid embolism.

oh, we are going to see this formation again, you better believe that.

Greg Seltzer said...

Dude... get real. This was largely a mess straight from the drawing board.

dikranovich said...

I see the point of playing mix deeper than Bradley. in Bradley you have a player who is great at tracking back, and it strengthens the defense in that way, and it looks to me like you give mix a couple years in MLS to work on his defensive chops, and he is going to be special.

sure they could have started with deuce up top and lee N in the hole, and it will be more formidable next time out. the wingbacks need to really understand the flow of the game.

we are getting beat on a give and go out on the wing, right at the beginning of our own defensive third for years now. its like a red herring. I think they eat raw herring in Holland with an advocate chaser.

speaking of Holland, this is the formation used by one LVG and he knows total football. he understands the virtue of this formation and he is working on instilling that at man u. is he an idiot???

mark said...

I dont mind the formation but once again disagree with the personel. I think I've guessed one starting lineup right in Klinsmann time coaching. Shea looked lost defensively and out of form. Dempsey needs to be a Striker in this formation Altidore had to drop and cover defensively. Jones is a wildcard. Yedlin ran out of steam. I hope we continue trying. Doesn't make sense to train for a month and fold after a loss. But for having played in this formation Klinsmann didn't pick them players to carry it out.

Greg Seltzer said...

They have been working in three formations this month, which makes me feel some time has been wasted. This is a bad idea from the go.

dikranovich said...

Ok beast mode, you're not under contract to speak in front of the media for four and a half minutes. So you don't need to regurgitate the same answer 29 times

dikranovich said...

It's funny, but if you look back an wonder why national team coaches have failed in their second cycle, even after a successful first cycle. The number one answer is almost always that the ideas got a little stale, and this leads to a complacency in the players

JBS said...

Did I just see Holland/Man U. compared to the USMNT? Would that Klinsmann had the embarrassment of riches of either of those storied sides. Dikranovich, your irrepressible enthusiasm for the team and Klinsmann is nice but rose-tinted to say the least. The defense was entirely out of sync all game, the midfield was poor to non-existent for long stretches in the first half, the fitness and decision-making under pressure was abysmal, and the substitutes were seemingly thrown on with little clear direction or organization. For all his time in the legendary German system, Klinsi has been disappointingly poor in tactical shape and adjustment. The Chile we saw tonight was not spectacular, but time and again they were allowed space, time, and turnovers. This game should have ended 2-1. That it did not should be zero surprise to anyone at all versed in tactics and mechanics underpinning the game.

DrewVT6 said...

It was 2nd & 3rd team scrubs fighting for their for careers vs complacent USA players who know they won't lose a starting spot despite not even playing for their club team. No formation or lineup will fix this.

dikranovich said...

look, coach klinsmann has his job, and he has a nice job. he certainly has expectations.

lets be real about this. a friendly is never your best friend, because even when you win, you lose, at least according to some, and when you lose, you definitely lose.

USSF has expectations, and nobody is free of them, except the fans, well, the ones that are not card carrying members. most of the fans.

coach klinsmann cant just waltz through gold cup and next summers copa America and act like there are no consequences. his job is on the line. that's the fact, jack!!!

Unknown said...

Is there any way to mute Dik?

Unknown said...

I liked the 3-5-2, especially with all players available. I'd swap Brek for F.Johnson, move Dempsey to 2nd striker, put Mix in at CAM, Cameron at 2nd DM, and maybe look to replace JJ with JAB (You could also have JJ in 2nd DM role with Cameron as CB, but not preferred).

Spencer Smith said...

Well I am all for experimentation early in the cycle because this is obviously the best time to do it. However, with experimentation, you would hope that a clearer picture emerges over time - i.e. what newcomers will have a role, what system suits the talent, what formation works best, etc. The unfortunate thing is, none of those questions appear to have been answered. The only new blood that really appears ready to make an impact are Rubin, Garza, and maybe Gyau. (Nguyen is a vet, so don't consider him a newcomer). In addition, I have no idea what formation suits us best, and Jurgen seems dead-set on forcing the "best players" on the field at one time, rather than the best team as a whole. Maybe the Gold Cup will give us an idea of who the team really is, but I have my doubts.

Pragmatic Idealist said...

Tactically, what they did made sense. I think their lack of form and conditioning hurt them more than anything.

In the first half, the US not only scored 2 goals, they only let in 1 and were dangerous several other times. They had some blips, which one would expect in a new formation. Personally, I would have liked to have seen Dempsey up top instead of Wood and Nguyen in that CAM spot. But they got some good possession and both wingers got in on goals. That can't be understated.

In the second half they moved to a 4 4 2 diamond with three d-mids of Trap, Jones, and Bradley. They should have still been able to get some possession but the back line was a mess.

We had Besler with a national team Rookie next to him and an exhausted Yedlin and exhausted Shea (who can be questionable full backs anyway).

Add that in to a US side that looked just simply tired all over the pitch.... and it was woeful second half.

I liked the 3 5 2 and I also like that it can transition smoothly into a 4 2 diamond.

The 3 5 2 gives us spots on the field to use guys like Green, Gyua, Robbier Rogers, Nagbe later this year, Yedlin, F. Johnson... all who have questionable D traits in attacking and dangerous position - wide! In today's 4 4 2 with wingers, the wingers cut in for the full backs more than not. That means that more and more wing width is coming from the full backs. This formation allowed the US to play guys with winger abilities and get support defensively from the CB.

It also fits our fullback pull. Guys like Besler and Cameron are mobile enough to play wide and big enough to play centrally.

IT is also a good fit because then in defensive moments it can shift to a defensive 4 4 2 diamond with teh addition of a defensive mid.

Look at this with different players.

Dempsey and Jozy up top.
Nguyen or a guy like Zalalem in the future at CA.
Mix and Bradley as 8's
Wingers in F. Johnson on the left and Yedlin on the right.

Then Besler, Jones and Cameron the CBs.

Thats a good set up. Then with a few switches.

F. Johnson comes back to left back... Besler and Cam are CBs... bring in Chandler for Yedlin as a RB.

Bring in a guy like Trap for mix.

You have a diamond with a solid flat back four and defensive trio of Trap, Jones, and Bradley.

Its a nice tactical tool to have. It just needs work. The Jones experiment continues. There were moments where his comfort on the ball and movement into space really helped the US move out of pressure from the back. There were moments were he lost the ball and created dreadful chances.

I think that particular experiment is here to stay. Let 's all hope we see more positives than negatives.

I hope to see more of the 3 5 2 in teh future with the diamond. I am all for tools in the tool box idea.. but I think they need to settle on a couple of standard ones. Those two are probably my favorite two in today's game.

Tony M said...

Pragmatic: Yes we scored two goals, but I am hard pressed to see how the formation is responsible for them. Both Shea and Yedlin made the type of runs they make from their normal positions, while Mix came way up from his assigned spot to something more like his natural position to do a great little improve. I think they do the same thing in a normal alignment. (Even Yedlin, who I thought was good in the first half, spent most of the game covering the back - like a natural fullback. And not allowed to pick and choose his runs like he normally would, he was exhausted by the second half.)

And while the 3-5-2 gave up only one goal, it gave up a number of chances, had a goal called back on a close (but correct) offside against what was very much a B team. (Imagine Sanchez and Vidal on the field. I shudder.)

Frankly, I find the whole game frustratingly inept. Just another installment in JK's continued trend of moving guys around with no regard for where the have played and drilled and developed tactical understanding. Mostly, he's doing this to find ways to keep Jones in the squad for 2018.

It was just depressing...

dikranovich said...

I'm sorry, I was mistaken. It's not opportunism, but the American way is one of opportunity, and the mentality is an opportunistic one, and that's what the 3-5-2 is all about.

Thank you.

dikranovich said...

Tony M do you really think Besler makes the pass to Shea that he did, if we are in a 4-4-2?

Greg Seltzer said...

Even if that was the only play of the entire match, it's not a great point. A left back can make that pass. Several players on the team can make that pass. Tim Ream, FabJo, you name it.

Pragmatic Idealist said...

I liked Ives approach. In a 3 5 2 both Yedlin and Shea were further up the pitch than they would be in a 4 4 2. That is the point of the 3 5 2. So yes, I think that both goals came from the play of wingers in a 3 5 2 is significant.

There were chances given up but they were more blips. The US was not getting hammered. They seemed to me fixable mistakes. The beauty of the 3 5 2 the way it was set up is that either Bradley or Mix could go up and be part of that attack. It can be and was set up to be a very attacking formation.

I liked it. I thought the ball movement, possesion, and the ability to press and get ball high and then take advantage of it were great.

Yedlin in particular was very dangerous often. When the US dispossessed them, they were immediately dangerous...

I really want to see this a few personnel tweaks. It looked to me this is not a one time game experiment. The player pool that JK called up seemed to be geared around it.

We'll see. The first half was shaky but promising. The second half was dreadful.... and it should be notes was the usual 4 4 2.

Pragmatic Idealist said...

I don't understand the resistance here.

The 3 5 2 puts guys like Yedlin in position to be wide. If they are wingers in a 4 4 2 or in a 433, the full backs overlap.. and the wingers generally speaking.. cut in to create that space.

Look at the difference between the 3 5 in the first half and the 442 in the second. In the first you had Yedln forward a lot more and he was supported with Birnbuam, Jones, and Besler.

In the second half, he was targeted a lot more and his support was two CBS and Shea. Which provides better cover for a guy who traditionally has trouble juggling the offensive/ defensive responsibilities?

Then look at the other side. Shea was dangerous going forward and wide... not cutting in and his support was Besler, Jones, and Birnbaum.

In the second half, he is much more on a island defensively and his support is Besler, Birnbaum and Yedlin.

In teh 3 5 2 you dont have a full back getting caught up. they aren't choosing when to get forward.. but are forward players. You actualy have more guys back defensively consistently in the 3 5 2.

If you believe you have good defensive talent in guys like Yedlin who are just not lock down defenders... then the 3 5 2 makes a lot of sense.

dikranovich said...

Mix is being tested by coach klinsmann, and does anyone really have such a problem with it? Why??? Mix was not some revelation wunderkind of an attacking mid in Norway, let's be honest, and even less so when he moved for a blip to Belgium.

What would this team have looked like with KB out there controlling the flow in front of the back line? I think it is safe to say they would have been more solid. Could Fabian Johnson make the same run Shea made? You know dang gone well he could have. Fabians not really a 90 min player in midfield anyway. So going into a game like last night FJ can push hard for 60 and be subbed for a Greg garza, or maybe even Nottingham Forrest, but a defensive minded, runner and defender. Extra emphasis on the defense. Or an offensive minded Shea, to run at a tired defense.

You move deuce up top and slot B feilhaber in the attacking mid role, and you will see something special. What this team can be all about

Zach said...

The resistance is that Jurgen switches systems continuously without ever really addressing tactics. New system, same players, square pegs in round holes.

3-5-2 may be the answer, but is Jurgen really the man to teach 23 players (or 40) a system they have never played? Doesn't seem so. But when the players struggle to adapt, Jurgen pushes the blame onto them. Hear him screaming from the sideline last night "move the ball around!"... really, Jurg? Is that the idea?

And, yeah, Brek Shea as a LB or LWB... not happening. Ever.

Unknown said...

stoke wanted to make brek a LB in a 2CB system so id say theres something to it in a 3CB set

Greg Seltzer said...

Yedlin already gets wide and becomes dangerous down the flank just as often as a regular old right back. One does not need to create a special system to give him these opportunities.

If you guys think the Chile B team turned the corner repeatedly on the team, what do you think the A squad with Sanchez and Vidal and Isla and the rest would do? Or the A squads Dutch and German teams we will play this summer? Or Portugal, Germany and Belgium last summer?

Besides, any system that takes so much play away from Bradley and Diskerud and Dempsey is not doing any net favors (no pun intended).

dikranovich said...

Greg, I know youre not saying DY was getting into the attack from right back, because that would not be accurate. He played right mid in his two sub performances in games 2 and 3, against Portugal and Germany.

And in the Ecuador game, which he assisted mix, he was again not playing right back.

dikranovich said...

It's not a special system, it's the system. This system does not take away from the attack, it adds to it

Greg Seltzer said...

First of all, I know you love to play evidence cherry-pick games, but here is his attack participation from right back against Belgium last summer. He sent 16 final third passes into the box from the right flank.

Secondly, yes, the 352 adds all sorts of power to the opposing attack - even when the opponent is a B team with exactly one attacker having more than five caps.

Finally, as for Mix, you are again playing games. He almost never played as a straight No. 10 in Norway and his time in Belgium was heavily sliced up because he left for Olympic team duty midway through. And playing a player in a position that is obviously not his proper role is not called testing. And this sort of player re-arranging has become a norm instead of a wrinkle. It is just silliness at this point.

dikranovich said...

Denial is not just a river in Egypt.

Greg Seltzer said...

Ha! That is rich like caramel brownies served on a yacht.