USMNT: Hold My Beer

Titans Bastard

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It's good to see Pepi and Aaronson come off here. We need them fresh for the rest of the window.
 

Titans Bastard

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I can't wait to see the Weah-Pepi-Aaronson triumvirate against Panama.
 

Pesky Pole

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I’ve actually loved Yunus Musah in this game. Driving the ball, showing grit when he loses it, really playing well at a position we need.
 

Titans Bastard

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I’ve actually loved Yunus Musah in this game. Driving the ball, showing grit when he loses it, really playing well at a position we need.
Imagine what will happen when his club actually starts giving him reps at his natural position! Getting him in the program was such a coup.
 

Kliq

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Would have been a hat trick for Pepi.

Weah has some bursts of speed and power that are reminiscent of his old man.
 

allstonite

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Aaronson is such a little weasel who seems to have a knack for bringing quality deliveries or finishes in big spots. I dig him a lot.
I’ve described him to my just now invested friend who is a big hockey fan as Brad Marchand. He’s a pest who won’t stop working but has a surprising scoring ability
 

Jimy Hendrix

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De La Torre so far seems to actually have the final ball and the connecting pass ability that internet people want him to have, which is quite nice news if it holds.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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In a saner reffing game, I'd say Luca got away with that one. In this game, I'd be outraged if he didn't
 

Titans Bastard

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Honduras-Costa Rica finishes 0-0. Every draw like this is good for the USMNT, as it means rival teams are dropping four points collectively rather than three. Both of those teams are on three points with 0-3-1 records after four games.

Osorio scores to tie things up in the Azteca.
 

cromulence

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Ha! Just beat you.

It's truly odd - he could EASILY just throw the ball normally there. Why behind the back?
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Hard not to be excited by the depth these days. A bunch of guys you feel like you can’t keep off the field, but we’ll have to see how the presumed top XI all look whenever it happens. Gio especially needs to show more, but maybe with Pepi up top over lesser talents it will unlock more from him.
 

DJnVa

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Two things:

1--On Pepi's first of the night, the goal, the assist, and the hockey assist, went to 3 guys with combined age of 56. Pepi is second teenager to score brace in WCQ (Pulisic) and first to score in consecutive games.

2--The idea that you can only have VAR if every stadium has it seems off. If VAR is a good thing, what is wrong with having it in some games and not all? Isn't that better than not having it?
 

Jimy Hendrix

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We should never start a midfield anymore without at least one of Musah or McKennie if we can at all avoid it. McKennie's the more all-around of the two at this time, but Musah's greatest strength of ball retention and ball progression happens to be laser focused towards fixing the USMNT midfield's biggest problem.

If Musah improves in the final third, he could be the best midfielder on this team no contest, but even if it he basically contributes nothing there he could be massive for this team simply for what he does to keep us ticking over in midfield. Reminds me of Dembele from the good Poch Spurs teams.
 

67YAZ

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Seeing reports all over the Dest tweaked his hammy, likely done for this window.
 

rguilmar

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Great second half! Super impressed by Pepi, Musah, De la Torre, and Weah. The team just looked to just play without thinking too much in the second half. Idk how to describe it, but it just looked like they played naturally, if that makes any sense. Aaronson keeps doing his thing. It was refreshing to see a normal Dest performance after a few subpar showings. Not that he was great, but that is the game he normally plays. If he's hurt, that will be a big loss. Too late to call in Scally? I kid. Everyone else pretty much did what I think we expect them to do. Having that driving force in MF in Musah and a finisher in Pepi really helps.

Not to be too much of a turd in the punchbowl but that was a pretty limited Jamaica squad outside of GK though.
 

cromulence

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Seeing reports all over the Dest tweaked his hammy, likely done for this window.
Ugh. Kind of wish Robinson hadn't gone 90 now, since his knee was already a question mark. Scally should've been called in from the start.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Canada with some pretty good results so far. It's nice to see the USA at the top of the table but there are no bonus points here. Top 3 is all that matters. I think I would have preferred to see Canada drop all three points in Azteca. Long way to go but that draw at home to Canada could have a very long tail and we may eventually need a result in Toronto.
 

DJnVa

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Canada with some pretty good results so far. It's nice to see the USA at the top of the table but there are no bonus points here. Top 3 is all that matters. I think I would have preferred to see Canada drop all three points in Azteca. Long way to go but that draw at home to Canada could have a very long tail and we may eventually need a result in Toronto.
Maybe, but if we take care of business against Panama, the pack will separate.
 

Titans Bastard

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If the US (@PAN, vs. CRC), Mexico (vs. HON, @SLV), and Canada (@JAM, vs. PAN) win their next two games (no guarantees but conceivable), Costa Rica beats El Salvador at home, and Honduras beats Jamaica at home, here's what the standings would be going into November

14 - US
14 - Mexico
12 - Canada
6 - Costa Rica
6 - Honduras
5 - Panama
5 - El Salvador
1 - Jamaica
 

Jed Zeppelin

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We should never start a midfield anymore without at least one of Musah or McKennie if we can at all avoid it. McKennie's the more all-around of the two at this time, but Musah's greatest strength of ball retention and ball progression happens to be laser focused towards fixing the USMNT midfield's biggest problem.

If Musah improves in the final third, he could be the best midfielder on this team no contest, but even if it he basically contributes nothing there he could be massive for this team simply for what he does to keep us ticking over in midfield. Reminds me of Dembele from the good Poch Spurs teams.
Musah just has a natural gravity to his game that is a huge boost to the midfield. Draws in and dispatches defenders with purpose and—more importantly—with pace. Dest, for example, can be a magician on the ball but he sometimes gets stuck in skills mode where he just wants to break down defenders and for the basketball fans in the audience it's similar to when Jayson Tatum decides he's going to ISO. It often works, but it can really slow things down and his teammates just kind of sit there and watch. When Musah is on the ball, I see a lot more intentionality and a lot of potential to be the kind of guy who is moving chess pieces around the field. Turns 19 in November!
 

lars10

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Great second half! Super impressed by Pepi, Musah, De la Torre, and Weah. The team just looked to just play without thinking too much in the second half. Idk how to describe it, but it just looked like they played naturally, if that makes any sense. Aaronson keeps doing his thing. It was refreshing to see a normal Dest performance after a few subpar showings. Not that he was great, but that is the game he normally plays. If he's hurt, that will be a big loss. Too late to call in Scally? I kid. Everyone else pretty much did what I think we expect them to do. Having that driving force in MF in Musah and a finisher in Pepi really helps.

Not to be too much of a turd in the punchbowl but that was a pretty limited Jamaica squad outside of GK though.
If the game had been called correctly Jamaica should probably have been down to 9 men… definitely 10 early. Beyond that there were a number of other hacks that could have been more severely punished. Also, they never really seemed dangerous except for one or two chances. With a bit more luck this game could have been 4-0 or more… so, yes they were poor, but the US pretty much dominated them as well.
 

rguilmar

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If the game had been called correctly Jamaica should probably have been down to 9 men… definitely 10 early. Beyond that there were a number of other hacks that could have been more severely punished. Also, they never really seemed dangerous except for one or two chances. With a bit more luck this game could have been 4-0 or more… so, yes they were poor, but the US pretty much dominated them as well.
I meant more about the performance than the result. It was 2-0 and could have been more based on how well the US played, especially in the second half. In some ways not getting the deserved red 20 seconds might have helped in that regard. Obviously results matter and getting the win was paramount, but actually playing well was nice to see. My asterisk was more about playing well against an inferior team. Basically I was really enthusiastic about the performance but just noting that it's easier to play well against lesser opposition.

As far as today goes, really curious how both Gregg and Panama approach it. With Jamaica's issues, that fourth spot is up for grabs. Does Panama punt this game and go all in for game 3 this window? Does Gregg play it safe and go with a solid if unspectacular lineup? The US has 2 wins, 2 draws, and no losses in WCQ in Panama, so a draw is the minimum result for me.

I'm guessing McKenzie replaces Zim this time. Thought Zimmerman played well but Gregg started him knowing that Jamaica didn't have Antonio so Zimmerman's aerial strength would matter. I really want to see Richards but I would not complain about Gregg going with guys who have some experience in his system. Bello on the left and Yedlin on the right. Midfield will be interesting. I'd love Musah to get the start with Adams and I'd guess Lletget. Acosta with Lletget and Adams really lacks creativity. Up top, Aaronson, Pepi and Weah would make me happy. I could see the US rolling with a 3 ATB formation this game too. Gregg is just hard to predict.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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I’m down with the “Arriola does important glue guy stuff that people don’t recognize enough” thought, but not sure I’m “he starts most of the games in a WCQ window” down with it.

Not too mad at Gregg as a lot of it is COVID or injury based and rotation is needed, but this feels like a lineup that will give us one of our struggle-filled first halves.
 

JayMags71

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I’m down with the “Arriola does important glue guy stuff that people don’t recognize enough” thought, but not sure I’m “he starts most of the games in a WCQ window” down with it.

Not too mad at Gregg as a lot of it is COVID or injury based and rotation is needed, but this feels like a lineup that will give us one of our struggle-filled first halves.
Is Berhalter not starting Pepi because of “rotation”?
 

rguilmar

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I’m down with the “Arriola does important glue guy stuff that people don’t recognize enough” thought, but not sure I’m “he starts most of the games in a WCQ window” down with it.

Not too mad at Gregg as a lot of it is COVID or injury based and rotation is needed, but this feels like a lineup that will give us one of our struggle-filled first halves.
I mean, this is at the expense of Brendan Aaronson who did not play the full 90 on Thursday when Arriola did. Arriola's effort was obvious, but to me the danger guys on the wings were Aaronson and Weah. This along with not starting Pepi (also subbed out against Jam) removes players involved in, what, the last 10 goals for the USMNT (give or take)?

I'm a pretty big fan of Zimmerman compared to most, but not initially putting him on the roster and then starting him back-to-back over Richards is strange to me. Richards probably has the best form of any of the CBs and cannot get any time. I find this weird.

There is no limit on the number of players called in, so the "Covid/injury" rotation stuff to me isn't an excuse. The USMT depth is there and rotation should be an advantage, not an excuse.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Midfield is slack so far. Musah getting caught in possession a bit and the rest of the rotated midfield not transcending their limitations.
 

tmracht

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Just lumping it down field and last ditch defending. Not ideal. But they're doing just enough so far.