20 June 2006

Debriefing for Match 11.13: At New England Revolution


Media, Traditional and Otherwise

The Washington Post, Dan Steinberg: "For the second weekend in a row, the edge was canceled out in the final minutes of play"
MLSNet, Andrew Hush: "D.C. United continued their trend of losing points late on the road "
Mid-Atlantic Soccer Report, Mike Martin: "As bitter as the tie was in LA, at least this one is more palatable"
Poplar Point Perspective: "It sure seems like we give up a lot of late goals."
DC Sun Devil, Brian Garrison: "...from what I read in the Washington Post and from MLSnet.com, they played pretty much the same way that they did against the LA Galaxy. "

The Good

  1. Effort Returned: From my perspective, DC was much more active in this game. Yes, the Revs equalized late, but DC was playing like a team that was trying to get three points. I agree with Mr. Martin above, this was a much better performance than the one we saw against LA. The Revolution were generating their chances by virtue of their play, not by poor passes out of the DC backline.
  2. Troy Perkins: You may disagree with this, but I thought Troy had one of his better games of the year. This is probably one of the first games I recall where he had to make multiple key saves, and he managed to come up with all but one. The goal I can't particularly fault him for.
  3. Jamil Walker: Okay, he didn't do much in this game, but it was sure nice to see him as an option again.
  4. Brian Hall: This was a decently reffed match by Mr. Hall. Given the problems and scrutiny that comes up, credit where credit is due. He had control of this match, and did it without throwing many yellows around.

The Bad

  1. Falling Star: In the last game against New England, Piotr Nowak issued a comment saying "It won't work to hack at Gomez and Moreno, we have too many weapons." Well, not in this game. Alecko Eskandarian's MCL strain (surprise!) seemed to hurt this team, as Filomeno never really managed to establish the kind of presence needed to take him seriously as a threat. Moreno got a beautiful goal, which was wonderful to see, but Adu and Gros couldn't seem to create chances from the wing.
  2. The Problem of Three: The issue of the Boswell/Erpen pairing has always been problematic in the 3-5-2. Boswell was called upon to clear two balls off the line, which was nice, but way too dangerous. Additionally, I feel like the 3-5-2 is once again becoming too predictable. I'd like to see Nowak tactically change it up a bit on occasion, and for a few games here and there bring the 4-4-2 and 4-3-3 back again. Of course, that requires a healthy Prideaux and Eskandarian.

Moreno Watch

Jamie struck a beautiful shot from distance. Just exquisite. However, Jason Kreis answered Moreno in a nicely ironic fashion, putting in a PK. Kries 104; Moreno 102.

Man of the Match

Troy Perkins finally gets a nod from me. He was called upon to be very active, and he had to leave his line way too often for comfort. That's not his fault though, that's what the situation called for.

Final Thoughts

Man, this world cup thing is an attention hog, ain't it?

The mini-road trip concludes. Two points in two games, but it felt like it should have been more. DC is not a truly dominant team yet. We see that. They haven't really utterly destroyed a team since Columbus, and that's not in terms of the scoreline but in terms of the run of play. There are erratic moments coming in.

We get the Chicago Fire on Wednesday. I think that it has been long enough that whatever feelings exist from the 4-0 playoff debacle have faded a bit, and that's a good thing. I want DC to play with energy, but not stupidly. Especially since the season series concludes against Kansas City in the next two weeks. These games might have huge table implications for seeding in the East, and DC needs to find a full 90 minute game in order to be ready for them.


At 20 June, 2006 16:30, Anonymous Matt said...

It seemed that DC eased off the gas and felt that they'd win 1-0.

I was really dissapointed with Jaime's chip attempt late in the game. It looked half ass...too cheeky for a team with only a 1 goal lead.

I've seen this a lot with teams that dominate possession and have a slim lead. They get comfortable all the while forgetting that one mistake and the game is tied.

And...I've been a Perkins critic, but he is really winning me over. Damn he played well..made a few mistakes but it's easy to forget that he's young.

Plus DC's defense gambles a lot which forces a young keeper to play agressively...which has led to some of his mistakes...

My new revised take on him is that he's fine...in the top half of MLS keepers (maybe firmly in the middle?)...will make mistakes now and then because of his age..and will make many excellent plays...so it's a good tradeoff. He has tons of upside..and will only get better with more game experience.

I don't see him as a future USMNT player because of his size, but I can't see why he won't be among the best at his position in the MLS for a long time....nothing wrong with that...

Rimando is now firmly riveted to the bench....for as long as Perkins is healthy.


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