25 June 2007

Debriefing for Match 12.11: At Real Salt Lake

Real Salt Lake 2 : 1 D.C. United

Six Word Novel Recap

The lows can't be too low.

Media, Traditional and Otherwise

The Washington Post, Steve Goff: "...defenseless against newly acquired rookie Robbie Findley, United did little right until the final desperate moments and fell to previously winless Real, 2-1, Saturday night before 16,319 at Rice-Eccles Stadium."
The Salt Lake Tribune, Tony Pizza: "Real Salt Lake took advantage of two goals from its newest player and won its first game of the 2007 season, defeating D.C. United 2-1 at Rice-Eccles Stadium. "
DesertNews, James Edward: "
Five minutes into the second half, Findley scored on another breakaway, the product of an outstanding give-and-go with Alecko Eskandarian. After Findley received Eskandarian's return pass in the midfield, there wasn't a D.C. defender within 15 yards, which made for an easy finish."
QuarterVolley, I-66: "Real looked the more determined team, and United looked like they were a team that was going to lose by a goal."
AYL Soccer, Scott Stucki: " As the match unfolded, you would have thought that Real Salt Lake rather than DC United were one of the hotter teams in the league. RSL controlled play and made United look ordinary. "
The Edgell Supporters: "We went in against the worst team in the MLS and got beaten soundly. We were not interested in playing. Nolly didn't get help from the defense and the defense didn't get help from him. Gomez was invisible. The offense was not clicking in the final third and the defense was not clicking in their own third."
BlackDogRed: "This is not about losing to a clown team, this is about United's personality. If United is pissed off about losing alone they're oblivious to a bigger and fatal problem. Even if United had tied (or even won, a possibility against that clown team), it's the lack of effort, the lack of intensity and urgency, the assumption of superiority that, if continued, dooms United to mediocrity...Boswell's regressing, terribly. How about chasing breaker down and taking him out for pro-yellow rather than waiving arms over head for a bad offside call, eh? Better yet, don't let clown behind you in first place. Talk about a premature cult. Erpen's not the backline's biggest problem."
RSL Malcontent, Donk: "Atiba Harris should have been playing d-mid instead of forward for his whole career. He looked great and he played very much in control and saved us quite a few times by disrupting DC's offense. " (Note: Actually, didn't Bobby Boswell suggest this a few months ago in his website? I think he did...)
Soccer Insider, Steve Goff: "United lacked intensity until it was too late. It failed to maintain possession, never found a rhythm and yielded far too many opportunities to a club that was dead last in the league in scoring.

The Good

  1. Emilio gets a goal: Hooray.
  2. Jay Nolly gets a start: Look, I know he didn't have the command of Troy Perkins in the box. But remember he is the second string keeper: If he were the first string keeper he'd be starting. This seemed as good a game as any to give him some starting minutes. When there were rumors about Perkins going to Copa America, DCU must have realized that they needed to refresh their reserve keeper a bit. I like this call, and I can't fault him on either goal.

The Bad

  1. Radio: Listening on the radio is not the same as watching the game. I had thought I could get FSC matches via MLSLive, and I was wrong. And nothing against Tony Limarzi, but you really can't evaluate the game the same way as you can watching it, either live or on TV. So my bad on this one, and next time I'll truck out to Kitty O'Shea's.
  2. Dyachenko: The forward thing just isn't working with him, probably because it limits one of his better skills (the ability to move with the ball.) I don't think I heard his name more than once or twice before he went out.
  3. Defensive Positioning: Looking at the highlights, our defense is nowhere to be seen on key positions. Part of this comes from what sounds like DCU playing a very high line, on turf where the ball is inclined to get past players. Maybe it isn't taking RSL for granted, but it does seem perhaps a bit arrogant, no?
  4. We lost to !@#!@#ing RSL: Look, all the dispassionate analysis in the world doesn't change this fact. We got beat by a bad team. Again. And it really, really sucks.

Man of the Match

N/A. We lost. Hell, I should probably strip someone of a MotM honor they won.

Karma Bank

Tough to evaluate anything. No Change, +1 for the season.

Final Thoughts

Bill Urban has a nice poke at me for taking DCU out of the Freezer, playing on the natural insecurities of a fan nicely. The fact is, I had thought I had prepared myself for this possible outcome. I noted that it could happen. I knew that it was in the cards. And then when it happened, it still hurt. Gah. Not sure what I can add to that. I hate this result. I just wish I had a good enough night's sleep for me to have put it behind me. I haven't yet. I keep having nightmares of getting a ball with my back to goal and hearing Atiba Harris behind me. Even the win in the Gold Cup hasn't removed the feeling of spiteful depression that has settled in. Club over country has its risks.

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At 25 June, 2007 10:58, Blogger Bob said...

Interesting side note. I watched the match at Trusty's on Penn next to Potomac Ave metro station. It was dead when the match started, although when I walked up, the manager saw my jersey and said, "Is it 9:30 yet?" Awesome.

Around halftime more United fans showed up. Then there were 2 goals and two pitchers of beer and things got hazy.

Seems to be a very soccer-friendly bar, though.

At 25 June, 2007 11:21, Anonymous dirty supporter said...

i'm afraid you're more likely to have only fleetings of depression if you stick with club over country. plus we are dc united afterall, we might as well be the nations team.

At 25 June, 2007 15:22, Anonymous Bill Urban said...

all in good fun, D...

let's see, Sarachan gone, Ruiz mucking about doing a lot of nothing, the Super Club loses at home to the 10-man Crew...

what's the furthest any club/player/coach has fallen in a given week?

and more importantly, when is the debut of the DCenters related Toilet Bowl feature, rating the performance of MLS suits?

At 25 June, 2007 16:05, Blogger D said...

Bill: Oh, I know. And don't think I wasn't cursing myself for tempting fate by taking DC out of the freezer. Even though I don't believe in fate. It was a very funny poke in the eye.

A "Toilet Bowl" feature... hmmmm... how to photoshop Sunil Gulati into an image of a scrubbing bubble...


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