24 June 2007

First Impressions - Real Salt Lake 2 : 1 DC United

Here's the thing. Sometimes you know what you should believe. You know that Real Salt Lake is capable of beating you, since they did it in the past. You know you are capable of losing to some bad teams, which you've done this year. So the mantras and phrases of "not taking it lightly" and "play our game, not down to theirs" get repeated and insisted. You know they must be true, and yet... and yet after all that mental conditioning, you're betrayed by the fact that somehow it just refused to sink in.

United was outplayed by Real Salt Lake, who brought strong intensity if not clinical execution to this match. This was clear in the opening twenty minutes, where RSL had manufactured multiple chances against surprise starter Jay Nolly. And while I have not yet seen the game, the fact that Tony Limarzi's calls were often along the lines of "Namoff looks for Olsen but can't find him... and here comes Real Salt Lake the other-way" lets you know that our passing was not sharp, a problem that plagued us early in the year.

Did I believe RSL was due for a turnaround? Yeah, I did. I just was hoping it wasn't against us. This sucks. Now, at the same time, I'm not going to panic from this one result. But this is a disappointment. A huge one. And while you might wonder about starting Nolly (and his control wasn't nearly as good as Perkins) you have to feel like much of the problems were elsewhere. Like say, the defense. And the ability to manage frustration. And the ability to link together out of your own third.

So, hats off (bags off) to RSL for their first win of the season, and we'll need to have a nice talking to before Colorado on Thursday.

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6 Comments:

At 24 June, 2007 12:30, Anonymous Bill Urban said...

This...

is what comes from letting United out of the freezer...

 
At 24 June, 2007 17:04, Blogger The Nonexistance said...

I go on vacation for 2 weeks, have the time of my life, from time to time check up on my team and am beyond elated to discover great wins.

Return to the States yesterday, and am greeted by the WONDERFUL staff at Newark Liberty (psha...) and a United loss.

Listen, I get it, my vacation is over, if life could quit crapping on me now, please.

 
At 24 June, 2007 18:53, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you watch the game, or just listen to it? Because honestly, I think United was beaten by the turf as much as by RSL. That surface is a travesty for soccer.

 
At 24 June, 2007 19:04, Blogger Landru said...

The turf was awful. So was the defense. Worst. Boswell. Ever.

 
At 24 June, 2007 21:39, Blogger D said...

Anon: I listened to the game. I naively thought that I could get FSC matches via MLS Live. It was a mistake I won't make again.

And yes, from what I can tell, the turf was bad, but we've played on bad turf before. The problem was well, so many things. Defense, playing a very high line on turf where the ball can skip by you, was probably not smart tactically. Bleh.

 
At 24 June, 2007 23:38, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed, the defense was playing way too high and tight. It's also pretty hard to play possession soccer when every pass either bounces over the intended player's head or goes skipping past them before they can react. But let's call this what it is: a weak performance by United that they hopefully take a lesson from.

 

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