Monday, January 8, 2018

What. The. &@$#????

As if the USMNT program needed another stern kick to the balls... what have they been doing over there besides counting their unused stacks of money?

Unreal. Unforgivable.

- Greg Seltzer


ZackL said...

1. I honestly can't fault Jonathan here. Given that even a star player's career may only include 3-4 World Cups (and that might be a generous assessment), I'm not surprised that he jumped at the opportunity to play his way into a World Cup-bound squad.
2. Considering that, who knows how much good contact from USSF would have done to persuade him to stick it out with the USMNT? Even with his prior caps at the youth-level.
4. This whole situation is dumb and embarrassing.

Patrick said...

This is what is bothering me. Look at how a white kid from the East coast was handled. Matt Miazga had a few games with NYRB and was played well for a few weeks. He always played for the USA and never gave any indication he wouldn't. Poland were after him but he turned them down and played for the USA. On November 5, 2015, Miazga was quoted as saying, "I'm totally undecided. I'll wait to see who calls me first to the main national team and see what happens then." 8 days later, a WCQ, and Miazga is on the roster and on the field and cap tied. Is Miazga true red, white, and blue committed? He said he would play for Poland if they called him. According to Alexi Lalas and others, we should have left him for Poland as he wasn't "committed".

White kid, one quote, and boom, on the Senior team and cap tied within days!

Gonzales has been pursued by Mexico for months with multiple articles. Where was the rush and recruitment and call up that Miazga got? He couldn't even get a call up for a meaningless friendly in November!

Adrian said...

He wasn't called for the meaningless friendly because he was playing in the Mexican playoffs semifinals the next day.

But yeah, this one hurts. And yes, going to the world cup, etc. etc. But I would assume that marketing opportunities for a USMNT star would be bigger than for the Mexican team.

Patrick said...

That was what was assumed. I think Sarachan has since said they didn't think he wad ready. Clown show

Tom said...

I listened part of a contemporaneous Sarachan interview--can't recall where--and he definitely just lumped Gonzalez in with a bunch of other prospects, and sounded like he was softpedaling all of them.

I think the fed and the staff made a bunch of mistakes, here, and maybe could have kept him even with the qualifying situation--but it needed to be an active line of effort. One that we better goddamn-well be pursuing with alacrity for ALL our eligible dual nationals; sadly, there's no sign from the outside that anyone is charting or managing a course right now.

Adrian said...

Wow... claiming he's not ready... what a joke. He was already clearly better than Acosta this past summer.
sad trombone

J.D. Springer said...

Two things in play here:

1. It was always going to be awfully difficult to tell a kid to wait 4-5 years for the POSSIBILITY of playing in a World Cup. After this last s--t show there's no guarantee we qualify for 2022. So, we were already in a bad spot.

2. Sarachan may just not give a s--t at this point. He's probably unemployed and coasting into retirement as soon as a new manager is installed. He was not the guy who should have been making call-up decisions, but that's just another symptom of the bigger issues. The whole situation with a new federation president still to be elected and no manager in sight means this won't be the last thing that gets f---ed up.

The really ridiculous thing to me was some of the crap Rongen was saying about how we didn't have enough full-time scouts. He's right, but this is the guy that ran off Subotic, who would have been one of our center backs for the last World Cup and might have helped us qualify for this one. Rongen is a guy who knows more about bowties than cap ties.

The entire federation should be burned to the ground -- figuratively, not literally, of course. Sadly, I don't think scorched earth is what we're going to get based on the top contenders for president.

ZackL said...

I’ll just leave this here.

Tom said...

That Rothenberg interview is enraging. What the HELL is wrong with our fed?

ZackL said...

Yeah, that interview is something else. There's a lot to take from it, but the general issues that Rothenberg raises seem to have been echoed in the response of USSF talking heads to Jonathan's decision; they either seem to be blase about it ("Oh, we have plenty of talent to pull from.") or indignant ("If he doesn't want to play for us, then good riddance.") both of which are bad takes.

It seems to me that USSF is laboring under the delusion that we're in a position of such developmental strength that we can either ignore a well-spring of potential talent (Alianza in this case) or count on top dual-national prospects to stay in the program because the USMNT is "superior" to their other options. Which speaks to a level of complacency and disengagement that is worrisome.

Granted, there are a lot of qualifying factors in Jonathan's situation, or that of any dual-national for that matter. And USSF has poached dual-nationals from other countries before, so there will always be some give and take in these situations. But the failure to qualify for 2018 WC exposed an embarrassing number of flaws within USSF and the USMNT, which were amplified by Jonathan's decision to play for Mexico. And what's worse is that within USSF there doesn't seem to be either a plan to fix these issues or even a consensus that they even exist.

Essentially, the issue for me is less about the specific player we lost (though that's obviously terrible) and more about the structural failings that appear to have simultaneously influenced his decision to leave and colored the federation's response to it.

Tom said...

"And what's worse is that within USSF there doesn't seem to be either a plan to fix these issues or even a consensus that they even exist. "

Totally agree.