Friday, June 22, 2007

USA v. CAN, Gold Cup 2007 Semifinal, 6-21-07

I went to a sports bar by my lonesome to watch this game. Overpriced food: paid sixteen dollars for a soda and a sandwich. I wasn't disappointed for entertainment value, though.

Here's Ives, more Ives (with ratings!), and Yahoo! Sports Singapore for good measure.

The game was ugly. Should have gone into extra time: regardless of who touched the ball first, Hutchinson was onsides. The goal should have stood.

Hedjuk is getting some undue praise about the match. Every member of our back four was a defensive liability, Hedjuk included. Bornstein was ineffective on offense and plain stupid on defense (Gerba played him like a puppet), Gooch was afraid of the yellow, Boca was trying to maintain Gooch's typical physicality without Gooch, and Hedjuk had numerous bad touches in crucial situations which gifted Canada with breakaways and momentum. Canada's offense was having an easier time than ours.

By the way, all due respect to the Canadians around here, but your MNT loves to hack. Donavan was getting legitimately abused by Stalteri & Co. Beasley the same. Even Keller couldn't escape the hard tackles, thanks in part to Boca and Hedjuk passing to him under pressure.

Other notes:

-Canada established physicality by the seventeenth minute and we played in the wings the rest of the game.

-Up until the seventeenth: Landon was dribbling at people. He + EJ + Bease + Deuce + Bradley were clicking like a true offensive unit. Looked good. After that our touches went from nifty to pressured.

-Hedjuk just looks uncoordinated with his own body sometimes.

-I like EJ. He smiles a lot. But he never manages to produce. I think if Bob tried out other young options up front (Nguyen, Davies, Altidore soon) it would take the pressure of EJ and he wouldn't look so bad all the time.

-Beasley played like he wanted to impress. I'm sure there were some Rangers reps present at the match. Bornstein wasn't helping any.

- Iain Hume for the 'Nucks was impressive.

-Both Keller and Onstad are over the hill. Or just out of form in a way that makes them look old.


And in case you were wondering, there was a mothod to Donovan's PK madness. Or not.


I've learned something about how I like to watch soccer: I prefer to put the TV on mute and crank up some good music. Think my own thoughts once in awhile.

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