05 November 2006

First Impressions - DC United 0 : 1 New England Revolution


I don't believe in jinxes, karma, or curses. I do however believe in narrative irony. And so, after three months of DC getting by while playing substandard soccer, it seems natural that they would finally put it all together. And lose on an early goal. This is the kind of loss that drives people to reading existentialist literature. Or, failing that, it drives me to sweet booze.

It was not a repeat of the 2005 Chicago Massacre. No, this was just DC being victimized by the tyrrany of soccer's "the best team won't always win" attitude. Given that DC exploited that same rule enough over its history, it's only natural that the grandfather clock of fate chimed a bit earlier for us once.

I'm sure there's analysis that should be done, and will be done, but if nothing else I'm glad that the team I rooted for at the beginning of the season, the team that won the Supporter's Shield, the team that I was looking for since the all-star break... I'm glad I got to see that team one last time, even in defeat.

PS - Yes, I'm drinking. I may have to call in sick tomorrow.


At 05 November, 2006 21:22, Blogger The Manly Ferry said...

And you're right on.

The better team lost today. Even Twellman saw it. New England basically got pushed around - though I'd say that had a lot to do with Danny Hernandez getting knocked out...when he left, the Revs really left...though Khano Smith caused some problems too.

Anyway, tough loss, but there's no sense of injustice in play - at least so far as I can tell. DC went very, very flat for the second half of the season. I'd say take it up with the person who told them them the Supporters' Shield matters...

At 05 November, 2006 22:04, Anonymous Anonymous said...

so many chances
so many chances
so many chances

At 05 November, 2006 23:08, Anonymous Matt said...

D...I'm about 10 beers into my "sick" day tomorrow....SHIT!!!

At 05 November, 2006 23:10, Anonymous Matt said...

Nowak needs to stop treating Adu like a 12 year old and play him.

Gros is a solid player...and isn't near the offensive threat that Adu is...and hasn't played well.

What was Nowak thinking with his subs.

Simms has one goal...had dyachenko even scored this year???

At 05 November, 2006 23:14, Anonymous Matt said...

Cheers...another beer finished.

Yes...it was nice to see DC play well....NE looked like a bunch of kids...alas...the kids actually scored

At 05 November, 2006 23:19, Anonymous Nick said...

It was nice to see us play well again finally. I don't think anyone in particular deserves any specific blame for the loss, but I will say that I agree with Matt that Novak's "strategy" of subbing out one of the most creative offensive players in the league when we're down a goal to "provide a spark" is pretty dumb in my book. I know Adu hasn't been spectacular this year like we thought he would, but he looked like about the most dangerous player on the field sunday. All in all, though, a pretty good season with international play already secured. I feel good about it. Player of the Year: Gomez obviously. Bum of the Year: Novak. Thanks for the hard work and enjoy coaching in Poland...

At 05 November, 2006 23:21, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know this may sound like crazy talk, but it is time to fire Novak. Sure he may be a great coach but he is a terrible manager- in every sense of the word. How many late season/tournament meltdowns will it take to demonstrate that his "zero-tolerance for fatigue" attitude is not what a club with DC United's level competition need.

Top that with letting whatever his personal issues are with Freddy shoot DC in the foot. Did he forget it was a winner take all game? I almost choked when I saw him make a defensive sub when we were down 1-nil. Meanwhile, the withering look Adu gave Novak when he got inexplicably yanked in the 63rd forshadows the fact there is no chance he'll be in the black and red again next season.

Here's my plea: Sack Novak! Let him go on to be the best ASSISTANT coach for the US national team we've had in a while. As for DC, we need a manager who understands the complexity of playing in multiple competitions, can maximize productivity over the course of a whole season, and can put his own ego in check for the good of the club.

Spread the work... maybe we can make it happen!

At 05 November, 2006 23:27, Anonymous Matt said...

And...the plan of playing a left footer on the right and a right footer on the left???

What the F...?????

NO ONE DOES THAT....especially when your left footer (adu) can bend in crosses like few else...

Wynalda was slamming Nowak for it (don't forget that Wynalda and Nowak are friends)...and Arena was trying to be diplomatic..and not agree with Wynalda...and even he didn't quite understand..

Don't sack Nowak...because there isn't anyone better..unless we spend good money to get a foreign coach.

Let's just have Payne stick his foot really far up Nowak's a.. so that Peter loosens up a bit and will think outside of his little small box.

Don't forget that Nowak is a new coach...and is still learning on the job.

At 06 November, 2006 07:11, Anonymous bdr said...

They need a coldblooded selfish stone striker, someone to finish the good crosses. I'm sorry, I admire Eskandarian, but he's not it. They don't have one. Put a Ching or a (swallow hard and say it) Twellman or even a Razov up top, and at least one of those crosses and opportunities gets buried.

They were the better team, but don't forget Ningland played without it's best player (Dempsey) and a key player (Ralston). And don't underestimate how much that third minute goal changed everything. Ningland didn't play for anything but the counter the rest of the game.

At 06 November, 2006 07:13, Blogger DCNats said...

Well, if we were going to get knocked out at least we didn't go out playing that flat, dead legs way we've been playing... we went out swinging and showed some heart.

As far as Nowak goes, he didn't go from being a great coach in the first half of the year to being a bad one now... he's the same coach he's always been. We can't fire him... how hard would it be to convince a decent coach to come here after we fired Nowak over a bad half season?

And as Matt has already said, Nowak is still learning on the job... we have to give him the chance to learn from his mistakes.

Now, having said all that- he really did f-ck up the Adu substitution... not only is Freddy saying he probably won't be back, but at the end of the game we didn't have anyone left on the field capable of beating Reis... Jamie was totally out of gas and the rest of the people on the field just arent the type of players capable of making the kind of kick that was need to beat Reis on the kind of night he was having.

At 06 November, 2006 08:15, Blogger Brian said...

Yeah, I think watching them play so well, to only see them fail to really even bother Reis, was more painful than watching the Red Bulls game last week.

We need a true striker up top, and maybe (unless Donnet fills this void) a true second creative midfielder.

At 06 November, 2006 09:44, Anonymous matt w said...

Credit to Matt Reis, who always seemed to be perfectly positioned, and to the Revs' back line, who shut things down in the box over and over again.

Agreeance on the need for another creative MF. I think Dyachenko wants to be that, but he doesn't have the technical chops for it yet, and even Gomez looks to score at least occasionally.

And I'm sort of ambivalent about Nowak. It would be tough to fire a young coach with the hardware he's accumulated in just three years, but I can't help but wonder wistfully what if, say, Bob Bradley had been managing the team.

At 06 November, 2006 09:54, Anonymous Joanna said...

I just want to whine like a 6-year-old about how it's NOT FAAAAIIIIIR. You may all roll your eyes at me now. We were knocking at the door all. game. long. After Gomez went out I had to turn around and yell at the people behind me to sing. They did. I never knew I had that much force of personality or whatever. Just... $&@#*.

At 06 November, 2006 10:07, Blogger D said...

Ferry: No, there's no injustice, and I wouldn't claim any. If anything, it's a peverse from of justice. Full credit to you and yours.

K: I know. I know. I know. Sigh.

Matt: Every right to question the subbing. Alecko was hurt, and I assume Christian was as well. Adu made no sense coming on, and Simms has two goals I think, but yeah... we have no attacking options off the bench.

Nick/Matt/Anon: I feel the anger men, I really do. It's just being overwhelmed by the depression right now. Fuckity fuck fuck. The Nowak question is one I intend to get to. This week.

Yeah, bloody hell. Goddamn it. Profanity as necessary.

At 06 November, 2006 10:32, Blogger Kali said...

Not gonna lie... I've admired Nowak for a long time, but some of his decisions yesterday were totally mind-boggling.

My condolences.

At 06 November, 2006 11:45, Anonymous SamEE said...

I posted under Anonymous earlier- Just a quick thought. Does anyone think that the inflexibilty of Novak's character is something he will grow out of? Personally, I really don't see it happening- he was a hard-nosed iron man on the field and if he coached 11 little clones he'd be great.

While it is true we'd have a hell of a time pulling the trigger, what coach would turn down the opportunity to take the reigns of the best club (yes I maybe biased) in the league?

On another note, I've been reading the blog for awhile, and I've always been impressed with the quality of the post and the comments. Keep it up!


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