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Win Some, Lose Some

April 21, 2009

The idea was that the Crew would get healthy over the bye week. Robbie Rogers, Chad Marshall, Pat Noonan, and Frankie Hejduk would return to fitness and give the Crew a great shot at win number one against the Chicago Fire this Saturday.

With Noonan playing in last week’s reserve match, Rogers and Marshall returning to training, and even Frankie Hejduk getting back to running things were looking up. But every silver lining for the 2009 Crew, there has been a much bigger rain cloud dampening the positives.

The cloud hanging over the team is in the form of another injury to a starter. Goalkeeper William Hesmer picked up a knee injury that has kept him out of practice and required two MRIs according to the Dispatch’s Shawn Mitchell.

Now that Hesmer is doubtful, the Crew will turn to backup Andy Gruenebaum. I have only seen him in limited action and he is a step down from Hesmer. Gruenebaum is a good shot stopper, but does suffer from positioning and decision making issues at times. He is a young keeper without a lot of game experience, it’s to be expected.

With any change in the lineup, the new player will be expected to perform the best he can, but his teammates will also have to step up. This is where the good news of a healthy defense helps. Masrhall can nullify almost any striker, O’Rourke looks much better paired with Marshall (I would too if I were back there). Even with Hejduk questionable, there is enough talent to make it tough for Chicago. That’s good, with the offense that Chicago has, Gruenebaum will need all the help he can get.

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