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USA 3 – Sweden 2: Don’t Make Too Much of It

January 25, 2009

As promised, last night’s game was not stellar soccer, but there were good and bad things to take away from the game. The result really don’t mean too much as it was a B squad out there, but a couple players did show they have something to offer for the upcoming qualifiers.

Sacha Kljestan had a pretty good game with the hat trick. He is a great ball striker and plays well in the open field. He still gave away a bit of possession, but I think that was more indicative of spacing issues than his decision making. I think he is in for a rough learning curve if he does move to Europe. His passes need to be sharper to really control the center of the field.

Brian Ching did well holding up the ball, it was not his fault that Rogers and Davies had a poor game around him. He was the setup man with a lack of finisher for most of the game. He also showed off some good foot skills. He did look best when he dropped off of Davies to give the midfield someone to pass to. The game flowed a little better when he dropped back a little to fill the space between the midfield and attack (4-5-1 perhaps).

Kenny Cooper looked slow with a poor touch. He did not really get anyone else into the game like Ching was able to do. The same could be said for Chris Rolfe and Eddie Gaven when they came in. It was not a great night for the offensive subs.

Marvell Wynne will be a great right back once he learns how to play soccer. He is a fantastic athlete, but even the simplest moves left him flat footed and playing catch up. Bornstein did not impress me on the left, he hasn’t really since before his injuries last year. Califf looked decent in the center of the defense, but I think this was a game that Chad Marshall could have dominated and makes me think he should be the 1st option off the bench in central defense.

I still would have preferred something other than a flat 4-4-2 formation. The U.S. resorted to quite a few long balls to push the attack. The midfield looked disconnected from the high forward line. Ching did come back for the ball several times to really spur some linking play. It did not help the American offense that so many players had poor games. Rogers looked aloof and Thorrington is out of place on the right wing.

I did like seeing Brian Carroll’s appearance. He played some good passes to the left and right, but he is probably a bit too slow for the international game so I will be content to watch him in a Crew uniform. I also cannot complain too much about a win. Scoring three goals is also a good result. Mexico is next in just over two weeks; they won’t bring their B squad, but neither will the Americans

One Comment leave one →
  1. Coacch Tom permalink
    January 27, 2009 5:33 pm

    I thought Robbie had an okay game. His corners were great, his defense was solid and Ching did miss a wide open Rogers sprinting in on a counter (passed to Davies in a Crowd instead). What was missing was his attacking the corner like we know he can do. Second half he looked more like we are used to and had more of the attacking flair. I suspect that as it gets more comfortable we will see more of that.

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