World Cup Day 14 12/3: KNOCKOUT!!! USA!!!

DennyDoyle'sBoil

Found no thrill on Blueberry Hill
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What did Donovan say?
Sorry, posted it above. He thought they played a little too reckless at 2-1 and should have consolidated and played to be sound instead of ragged and disorganized trying to push forward. His point was that “there is always another chance.” Lalas disagreed and liked the aggressiveness.
 

JayMags71

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I’m struggling to be upset. That second half performance was more than I could have hoped for.

It wasn’t perfect. It rarely is. On another day, the US could win this one. If CP buried the earlier chance (and if he’s fully healthy), if one of the Wales or England chances land and the Iran game didn’t matter… If, if, if. I don’t care. They played their hearts out, made a bunch of casuals stand up to notice, and gave us thrills along the way. 31 groups of fans are going home without the trophy.

I’ll continue to enjoy the tournament and hope the future remains bright. They’re a clinical striker away at times (minus the bench). There’s gotta be a kid waiting in the wings that will fill the role.
Agree with all this. I’m really confused at how, with all the talented athletes we produce, we struggle to find a striker. I’m not even looking for Lewandowski or Kane. I’d settle for Danny Ings or Moise Kean
 

teddykgb

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Again I don’t think the conversation should revolve around the striker. It’s definitely a problem but if you play a 4-3-3 you need your wingers to do a lot of chance creation and that was the major problem. The best thing that could happen to the USMNT would be Pulisic getting a transfer and a regular run of matches for 4 years
 

McBride11

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Agree with all this. I’m really confused at how, with all the talented athletes we produce, we struggle to find a striker. I’m not even looking for Lewandowski or Kane. I’d settle for Danny Ings or Moise Kean
My personally theory, and part of it is played out I know:
1) just lack of 'soccer intuition' - didn't play enough, didn't watch enough etc. plus growing up the tall fast early puberty kids get pushed up top even if not the best option
2) Kane, Lew and a lot of other top strikers are a little taller. The 6'+ athletes in the US get pushed elsewhere or attracted elsewhere. The 6'1 speedy and strong kid wants to try football instead of soccer even if he only goes D3 college there whereas could do well into MLS.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Agree with all this. I’m really confused at how, with all the talented athletes we produce, we struggle to find a striker. I’m not even looking for Lewandowski or Kane. I’d settle for Danny Ings or Moise Kean
For whatever reason this is one position that has lagged a bit behind the development of the other positions in this cycle. And unlike CB you can’t really hide the limitations of a given striker. At this level, a plugger who is theoretically positionally sound and occupies space just isn’t good enough.

There is a lot intuition that goes into a quality striker; when to make the perfectly timed run, etc. Also needs ruthlessness to just fuckin turn and shoot the ball on a dime sometimes with a preternatural sense of where the corner of the net is (see Serbia’s 2nd goal yesterday for example). Our group this cycle were basically unskilled, unaggressive, and uncreative. Very very poor group all around, with Sargent’s decent hold up play the only bright spot. But few actual positive attacking ideas from any of them in all four games. Their loan goal was a freak touch.

But the other thing is there are limited opportunities. A lot of teams play with one striker, maybe two. You need to PRODUCE if you are going to make it in one of the top leagues and really develop world class quality or they will sit your ass down. We just need to keep building our depth up the way we have been and someone will inevitably rise.
 

DJnVa

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Turner after the game said it best- the difference tonight was their play in the box had answers at key times and ours didn't. He had some tough but fair things to say about his own defenders.
He pointed right at Dumfries before the 3rd goal. He has to trust this defenders heard him and reacted to it, because he's counting on that guy to be marked.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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Dumfries has been the best player on the pitch. If someone was going to get a clinching goal, I’m glad it was him.

Though leaving the other team’s best player unmarked in the box is a pretty big fuck up.
USA did not have good situational awareness or speed of thought defending all night. All Dutch goals were from attackers making runs into the box well after the first attackers arrived, set up, and drew defenders. No one picking up those runners. Maybe mental fatigue? I have t bern a GGG fan but this side was very well drilled in the group stage, maybe they just didn’t have enough left in the tank.
 

DJnVa

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USA did not have good situational awareness or speed of thought defending all night. All Dutch goals were from attackers making runs into the box well after the first attackers arrived, set up, and drew defenders. No one picking up those runners. Maybe mental fatigue? I have t bern a GGG fan but this side was very well drilled in the group stage, maybe they just didn’t have enough left in the tank.
On the first goal they strung together 20 consecutive passes--they had the US players moving and the defenders were hauling ass back towards the net. And then the perfect cutback pass when the defenders were playing to defend a pass beyond them.
 

SocrManiac

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USA did not have good situational awareness or speed of thought defending all night. All Dutch goals were from attackers making runs into the box well after the first attackers arrived, set up, and drew defenders. No one picking up those runners. Maybe mental fatigue? I have t bern a GGG fan but this side was very well drilled in the group stage, maybe they just didn’t have enough left in the tank.
I think this game was lost against Wales. That was very winnable and would have allowed the Iran match to be far less taxing physically and emotionally.

There may not have been a way through the Dutch, but I think it’s clear the US was drained.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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I think this game was lost against Wales. That was very winnable and would have allowed the Iran match to be far less taxing physically and emotionally.

There may not have been a way through the Dutch, but I think it’s clear the US was drained.
I agree. Especially with Netherlands having Qatar in their last group game. Didn’t have to break a sweat.
 

McBride11

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He pointed right at Dumfries before the 3rd goal. He has to trust this defenders heard him and reacted to it, because he's counting on that guy to be marked.
The CB also needs to look over his shoulder and shout at Jedi to watch Dumfries creeping in. Keeper and CB need to be generals in the back.
 

JayMags71

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USA did not have good situational awareness or speed of thought defending all night. All Dutch goals were from attackers making runs into the box well after the first attackers arrived, set up, and drew defenders. No one picking up those runners. Maybe mental fatigue? I have t bern a GGG fan but this side was very well drilled in the group stage, maybe they just didn’t have enough left in the tank.
I think this game was lost against Wales. That was very winnable and would have allowed the Iran match to be far less taxing physically and emotionally.

There may not have been a way through the Dutch, but I think it’s clear the US was drained.
Is Adams as fast as Memphis if he’s at 100%? Asking honestly. I don’t know, it just seems unlikely.
 

Cellar-Door

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It's pretty amazing that Messi is 35 and still has a real case for best player in the world
 

Ale Xander

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Sorry, posted it above. He thought they played a little too reckless at 2-1 and should have consolidated and played to be sound instead of ragged and disorganized trying to push forward. His point was that “there is always another chance.” Lalas disagreed and liked the aggressiveness.
And very ironic given Donovan was known for offense and Lalas for defense
 

lars10

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USA did not have good situational awareness or speed of thought defending all night. All Dutch goals were from attackers making runs into the box well after the first attackers arrived, set up, and drew defenders. No one picking up those runners. Maybe mental fatigue? I have t bern a GGG fan but this side was very well drilled in the group stage, maybe they just didn’t have enough left in the tank.
I think one thing I’d have the US invest in is a conditioning coach or a new program... I’ve never seen a team of 24 year olds be exhausted at 60 minutes so consistently.. every single game they stopped tracking, couldn’t make as many runs.. etc. not sure what’s going on there but on each goal you can see the US defender either losing his man or behind by 5 to ten feet.. they looked absolutely exhausted every match in the second half. And the subs today were basically invisible and didn’t seem to add any energy other than the pretty fluky goal.
 

SocrManiac

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I think one thing I’d have the US invest in is a conditioning coach or a new program... I’ve never seen a team of 24 year olds be exhausted at 60 minutes so consistently.. every single game they stopped tracking, couldn’t make as many runs.. etc. not sure what’s going on there but on each goal you can see the US defender either losing his man or behind by 5 to ten feet.. they looked absolutely exhausted every match in the second half. And the subs today were basically invisible and didn’t seem to add any energy other than the pretty fluky goal.
They’re exhausted by the 60th because they’ve already done 90 minutes worth of running. It’s not a conditioning problem, it’s a tactical one. The best sides in the world can turn that flying, pressing style off and comfortable absorb pressure while recharging. They’ll then launch another swarm. The US can’t do that yet.

Yesterday the cost of the group stage came due. I said it somewhere else- the lack of finishing in the groups is what left them utterly exhausted mentally and physically yesterday. Another goal in any of those games (especially Wales or England) and the craziness in the Iran match never materializes.