Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Your USMNT Line-Up v Panama

I gotta tell ya, this is exactly what I did not want to see. Make a change here, a change there? Sure. Get Jozy plenty of fitness minutes? Definitely. Do a wholesale player change? Uh, no thanks.

If there was nothing on the line, okay. That, however, is not the case. Mess around and lose this game, and we go from playing Curaçao in the quarters to staring down Jamaica. I don't like this one bit. That doesn't mean I don't believe this side is capable of beating (or at least drawing, as is necessary) Panama. But why throw caution straight into the wind?

If this team falls behind, I'm going to get nervous. And there is absolutely no need for any of us to be getting nervous in a Gold Cup group stage closer when we're already sitting on six points. But (gulp) here we are...





- Greg Seltzer

10 comments:

downintexas said...

why are we still playing a washed up player who can only score game winning goals by bicycle kicks.

Greg Seltzer said...

Heh, that's your takeaway from tonight? Dude, he's still easily the best, most well-rounded, experienced and reliable striker in the pool. And about the least of our problems in this game, to boot.

downintexas said...

LOL Greg. Sorry, I thought my comment was dripping with sarcasm. Jozy is by far the best striker we have.

Greg Seltzer said...

Bah, my bad, it was like 7 am here. I wondered if it was satirical.

downintexas said...

I figured you were up late watching the game since your 8ish hours ahead. Get some rest.

I always look forward to your game grades on MLSsoccer

ZackL said...

There seemed to be a consensus among the commentators on Fox last night that Gyasi is the starter even when Jozy's healthy. Which, what do you even say to that?

I thought the result was fine and I'm glad to see that Berhalter has deviated from his "System" over the course of the group stage. Not a huge fan of his decision to swap out the starting 11, but I'll take the 3 points. Though had Panama fielded a stronger side/taken their chances, it might have been a different story.

I think questions still linger about how well this team will cope against an opponent that won't bunker and will actively seek to possess the ball.

Greg Seltzer said...

I think it might have been Matt Doyle who opined that Zardes probably still starts against Curacao, and that Altidore takes over from there. I'll go along with that call.

Yeah, I didn't like the full swap-out. It got the job done eventually, but at this point in time I'd rather stay mostly full steam ahead now that we are starting to have that sort of thing brewing. I get rest, I get the explanation he gave. He felt it was important to do given the team's trajectory. He had confidence they'd manage it and that's good. It came off okay enough. I just would have preferred certain changes, as opposed to everyone.

Well, that depends on what area of the field we're talking about. The attackers, especially Pulisic, Boyd and Altidore may actually improve given more space to get behind and down the flanks. Those guys can destroy on any given night when the other team is bringing men forward. I can certainly see opponents that would trouble the midfield. The back? That's a big question still.

ZackL said...

Fair point to all of the above. I can definitely envision a scenario where say, Mexico, presses and by doing so opens up the field for Pulisic and company to run riot. Likewise, I can see another possibility where a team plays like Chile and really shoves us around in midfield, thereby causing all kinds of problems. We don't play teams of Chile's caliber all that often, but that was the basic blueprint Venezuela followed. So it seems like a weakness most teams would attempt to exploit. And it's not clear to me what Berhalter's fix for that is, beyond a personnel upgrade in the form of Adams/McKennie (maybe?).

This team, or Berhalter's vision of what the team should be, is very much a work in progress (obviously). And I would imagine that he'll get a full qualifying cycle to make it his own, baring some terrible results that make a change absolutely imperative. So we'll see.

DaMa said...

Any chance we see Lima as a LB under GB? I would be sending Almeyda a thank you check for that move if I were GB.

ZackL said...

Probably not as long as Lovitz is on the roster. Or Ream.