Saturday, July 8, 2017

Your USMNT Line-Up v Panama

Pardon my tardiness, but we just arrived in Helsinki (the lady kidnapped me for a quick birthday trip). At first glance, this USMNT formation and XI selection has me skeptical. I would have kept Acosta in the line-up, I'd have kept he 4-2-3-1 and I definitely would have made sure to get at least one defense-stretching presence (read: Arriola or Morris) on one of the flanks.

UPDATE: Actually, Acosta is in there, and the 4-2-3-1 seems to be back. For some reason, MLSS had Morrow in the XI instead of the FC Dallas man, and the team in a 5-4-1. Oops!

But here we are anyway. Enjoy the contest, catch you all after the final whistle with US player ratings over at MLSS.







- Greg Seltzer

14 comments:

DaMa said...

Wow that was a surprising number of guys who looked awful following a pretty optimistic Ghana match. Why is Graham Zusi starting for us at RB? Does he have photos?

Greg Seltzer said...

Well, you know who I think should be an obvious #2 at that position.

DaMa said...

Yep.

What Arena does with some of the people who were bad, particularly the right side, is a big test of the gold cup in my view. Does he stick with his first choices who played poorly (looking specifically at Bedoya, Zusi and Besler, though obviously more than just those 3 weren't good enough)? He has to be able to see how bad of a defender Zusi is at this level doesn't he?

Biggest surprise for me was how bad McCarty was.

DaMa said...

(in looking for optimism i will pretend that this was just Arena giving the starts to guys who he felt like deserved first looks and now he will have an open competition everywhere but in goal... and I guess Dwyer)

Dr.Jon said...

I think if you were objective, and I think Greg and I have had this conversation before, you would realize that Dax is just not the CM you need against a fast, athletic, physical team. He is too small, too slow and on the international level not able to absorb pressure that he has never seen in his career in MLS. It is just who he is and where he is in his career as a lifetime MLSer.

I thought JK showed pretty clearly that Bedoya is not a wide mid/wing player at the international level.

Please stop the Zusi experiment. Great sub for when you want to put 5 across the back. Much like Bedoya, at this point is a great late sub when you want tireless energy to harass in the midfield. Just don't expect much offensive output from him.

I have no idea what Bruce means when he says I want to see what people have to offer and then starts Zusi, Bedoya, Guzan, Omar, Besler (those guys have had all kind of runs with JK) - with Roldan, Lichaj, Miazga, Morrow, Hedges etc... on bench.

There's more....but I need more coffee.. :)

DaMa said...

@dr jon i hear what you are saying about dax,but its not like Panama brought a team of MLS+ players that he should have had problems with. And none of that explains Acosta's issues either. I agree Dax probably struggles with Belgium. But this wasn't Belgium.

Other than that yeah, agreed wholeheartedly on the Zusi/Bedoya pairing. Like I said I am just hopeful that Bruce felt like he owed the established vets a first shot at the best group team and now its open season.

Everything about this lineup felt like ye 'olde JK start 4 defensive midfielders strategy (and yes Rowe is probably an exception to that, but in international competition he may be more central midfielder than wing).

downintexas said...

It is just one game. Bruce is looking to get 1st place in the group. We needed a more veteran squad for this game. If we put in roldan, lichaj, miazga and morrow do we win or even tie the game? Maybe but probably not.

Of these players on the Gold Squad only a handful of them will be on the bench in Russia. Bruce is not building for 2022. He is looking at 2018. These are the break in case of emergency players. Bruce is planning for starters getting hurt. Zuzi is not betting out Yedlin nor Chandler.

Dr.Jon said...

I hope so, @downintexas :)

Looked pretty bad and if that is a JK lineup we would be calling for heads....

downintexas said...

@Dr. It was not one lineup that we were calling for Klinsi's head. It was a laundry list of things, including multiple bad lineup calls. I never like klinsman, but if he got this result with a C team I would be happy. But he was getting this result with his A teams

DaMa said...

It definitely was a JK-ish lineup with arguably 4 box to box midfielders playing and the Zusi nonsense at RB. As downintexas points out, Arena doing this once doesn't equate to a pattern of poor selection. If Bedoya is our starting wing regularly, I will be calling for Arena's head as much as JK's.

Dr.Jon said...

@DaMa I agree.

ZackL said...

Obviously that wasn't a great game, but I'm hopeful that it was something of a one-off (especially for McCarty and Acosta, who both looked especially poor as everyone here has noted), though I will say that it's a little frustrating that we still haven't found a way to cope with Panama's physicality. The fact that they are going to press, harry, and foul throughout the game should be a given at this point, but it seems to catch us off guard every time.

And much like everyone else here, I find Zusi's continued presence at RB to be absurd at this point. What, beyond WC/general international experience, does he bring to the team in that position? His attacking threat, beyond the occasional cross, is minimal and his defending is workman-like. At best. What's really concerning to me is that his inclusion seems to be an implicit concession by Arena that there are no decent third-string (if we're assuming that Yedlin and Chandler go 1-2) RBs available. Which seems crazy to me.

Dany Tzvi said...

Well, hopefully lichaj comes out and just freaking runs away with the spot for the rest of the gold cup, and we never hear from zusi again.

Dr.Jon said...

@Dany AMEN.