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Making Something Out of Nothing

January 24, 2009

Tonight’s National Team friendly against Sweden seems to pale in comparison to the upcoming main event against Mexico. The US team is filled with B or C players. The Swedish team is filled with domestically based players as well. There is not much riding on this game except perhaps getting noticed by Bob Bradley.

I will try to get a few other things out of this game. I will like to see how the Crew players are going to do. Rogers is a lock to get his first full cap and there is a chance that William Hesmer may get his too. Carroll and Gaven have the chance to impress, but they certainly are fringe players in the national team pool right now.

The other thing I will be looking at is how the National Team lines up. Bradley always runs out a 4-4-2. I will be interested to see if this really starts looking like a 4-5-1 with a striker sitting deep. I think this may be ideal for a team that does not have great striker options.

Looking towards Mexico, I would love to see Donovan sitting in the attacking role in midfield with space to work, with Dempsey and Beasley on either wing sitting behind the striker of the day. The only problem with this lineup is the lack of creative spark out of central midfield. Clark and Mastroeni can struggle to clamp down on top attackers, Edu shows signs of being a very good two way player, and Klejstian’s passing and decision making needs to improve. I guess this is the area of the field that I will be watching closely tonight.

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