Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Nos. 3 & 4

What's say we just knock out all of central defense in one shot? We'll start on the right...

Omar Gonzalez
Matt Hedges
Matt Miazga

Also in the frame: Steve Birnbaum, Walker Zimmerman

Obviously, now that Copa America is over, I'm going back to wanting Cameron in midfield. Believe me, I strongly considered leaving him here to continue the Brooks partnership. But moving him to midfield grants an extra set piece defender, which has been needed for a while now. Frankly, I'm still stunned Gonzalez was ignored for the Copa roster. As Mike Tyson would say, that was ludicrisp.

Speaking of being ignored, Hedges is long overdue for inclusion in this stable. Miazga was fatally poor against the Colombia Under-23's, but let's take that as a learning experience. He seems far more vital to the future than the decent Birnbaum. Zimmerman is now fulfilling his potential and worthy of being in the conversation. 

And now on to the left si-yeed...

John Anthony Brooks
Matt Besler
Tim Parker

Also in the frame: Jonathan Spector, Michael Orozco

The first two write themselves in ink, no explanation should be required. Unlike Miazga, Parker was almost exclusively fantastic in the aforementioned Olympic qualifying tie and I'd love to see if he can translate that up a level.

Spector is a solid, organized, versatile veteran that has no problem thinking at the speed of international play. Orozco really steamed my beans with that red mist moment at Copa, but he's often been solid when played in the middle and paired with the right partner (read: an aerial master) for the US.

- Greg Seltzer


Kirk Diggler said...

Spector has been at the fringes for years now.... that should tell you something right there.

Greg Seltzer said...

Well, for starters, he's been injury prone. But I assume that's not what you mean. Either way, for me he's certainly better than some others who have seen decent time over the past five years.

Patrick said...

I thought Parker was excellent in the first game but horrible in the second. But he is young. I would leave Cameron here. He is not great in the midfield. But if you are working up to a Bradley stunner then by all means continue.

What about some of the other young CBs? CCV could be in the 18 with Spurs this year; that would vault him ahead of many on your lists. Erik Palmer-brown?

Greg Seltzer said...

I certainly did not find him to be horrible in the second game, but yes, he was among the culpable on the Colombia winner.

When the young CB's play, then we can talk. I'm obviously not putting reserve defenders in any position to play for the USMNT. Making a few eighteens does not "vault" anyone in my book. It takes more than that.

Zach said...

Isn't Orozco a reserve at this point? Rarely plays for club.

Adrian said...

I thought Parker was pretty poor in the 2nd game vs Colombia as he should have been red-carded for that stamp. Hopefully he works on his mental game and doesn't let that happen in the future.

DaM said...

@Greg I definitely feel like Cameron needs to be in the starting lineup. I assume you will start him at the 6, in which case I am okay finding a different RCB.

But is the right choice Omar? I agree that he should have been on the copa roster (in my mind instead of castillo at the least), but you have to admit he has had some recent shots at taking that spot and not been great. Granted he had a different JB to his left and seems to have had a good recent liga MX season, but I never really saw them. For me, I would have Hedges, Birnbaum then Gonzalez.

I love Miazga's potential but if there's one thing olympic qualifying showed us is he lacks consistency at higher levels. His play at Chelsea was meaninglessly short, but it certainly didn't disprove that theory.

Dany Tzvi said...

wouldnt this be #s 4 and 5?

Dany Tzvi said...

Gonzalez was great in MX this past year and I think he would make a good partnership with Brooks. What Omar lacks in distribution JAB compensates for. I agree 100% that cameron should be in the midfield. He's the 6 we've been looking for the past 6 years to compliment bradley.

Dr.Jon said...

Given the pace of La Liga MX, I am not sure we should be drawing defenders from that pool. It is not a league well known for defensiveness of fast high presses

Greg Seltzer said...

@ Adrian: While I agree about the Parker stamp, I highly disagree with everyone claiming that he was poor throughout the second Colombia game. Not sure how anyone could think that, really.

@ Zach:

It's true that he had a sitting spell late in the Clausura season (some brought on by multiple USMNT absences), but combining that and the Apertura, he still started 25 games for them. More to the point, he knows the level.

@ DaM: Yes, Cameron will be the #6 starter for me. But I have no earthly idea how you could put Birnbaum ahead of Gonzo. The former has yet to offer one completely solid USMNT performance of any kind, the latter has starred at a World Cup. Agreed on Miazga, though.

@ Dany: Nope. The #5 is for left backs.

@ Dr. Jon: Plenty of teams that perform well at World Cups draw defenders from that league.

DaM said...

@Greg You make a fair point about Birnbaum v. Gonzo. That being said, I am not sure what happened to Gonzalez in 2015 but he hasn't seemed like the world cup quality center back since the world cup ended. Fully conceding that I have no seen a ton of him, when I did see him post WC he seemed either... disinterested (maybe that was a function of being unhappy in LA) or mistake prone or.... something.

At some point I get tired of oops 1-0 deficits and Omar seemed to be the king of them for a year.

Though you make a fair point that it isn't like Birnbaum has shown himself ready to go 90 minutes at this level yet. Even the game where he had a goal and an assist his defensive work was occasionally poor. I guess that just tells me that I no longer trust Omar.

Dany Tzvi said...

in the old 2-3-5, the 2 defenders (called fullbacks) were numbers 2 and 3 (as the farthest back players). today those are outside backs (hence the term fullbacks). 4, 5, and 6 were the next row of players, the 3 midfielders (halfbacks). 4 and 5 evolved into center-backs, hence the anachronistic term center-half used to refer to center-backs.