Sunday, July 26, 2009

Embarrassing

That's the only word that can be used to describe the USA's performance today in the Gold Cup final against Mexico. The second half was just pathetic. First a quick note on the Wizards with the national team. There had been hope that Jimmy Conrad could have gone today but in the end they decided not to risk the Wizards captain. Davy Arnaud started once again for the US national team. Didn't play as poor as I thought he did in the semifinal, but didn't have a great performance. In the first half the US had multiple chances but couldn't finish them or didn't take their shots. That's what happened with Arnaud as he had 1-2 opportunities in the first half but didn't pull the trigger.

In the second half, things started to go down hill quick after what many saw as a questionable penalty kick in the 54th called against Jay Heaps. The floodgates opened after the PK, as the US pushed forward for the equalizer with Mexico doubling their lead in the 61st minute. Arnaud's day ended soon afterwards as he came out for Kenny Cooper, but things didn't get any better as Mexico scored 3 more times, in the 66th, 78th, and 89th minute to completely blow the US out in the final.

Yes the US team was their B-C team depending on who you talk to, but it still sucks to lose to Mexico. The defense as a whole was poor, Jay Heaps and Heath Pearce were abused on both wings during the game and the offside trap was not working at all. In the end, this failure has to fall on Bob Bradley. Bradley named the B-C roster for this tournament, which I don't entirely mind, because players needed to get rest and start training with their club. My problem with his roster selections had more to do with the B-C teamers he brought. He brought multiple players to the Gold Cup with early releases already guaranteed by Bradley so players like Freddy Adu, Charlie Davies, and Steve Cherundolo could all return to their club teams. So already before injuries the US were going to be knocked down to 20 players when those guys left. CONCACAF even gave Bradley 7 extra roster spots for players since they'd just played in the Confederations Cup. But Bradley made little use of those spots and using an opportunity to give the rest of the roster a break, because by the second half against Mexico, all the players that were starting were dead too many games in a short time without utilizing the depth of the team. When it came to the case of Cherundolo, he didn't even have a true right back on the team after him, so when he left, the US had to deal with converted midfielders, or Jay Heaps as the right back, not extactly your ideal situation. Overall this game falls on Bradley's poor coaching decisions in naming the roster and decisions during the tournament.

3 comments:

PVFC said...

Ugh, just having Feilhaber would have put this game away earlier.. Its not losing that sucks, its losing to Mexico, by 5 freaking goals...

Posistives that might come from this game from a KC perspective? Maybe that Conrad will be in South Africa because I for sure dont want Marshall or Goodson on the bench in case of injury to the top CB's.

Hank said...

Actually thought Marshall did a good job in the first half... but the speed of Mexico was too much for the back four - and as Mike said they were able to beat the offside trap easily. Perkins was left one on one too many times.

Hank said...

and the reason is Bob Bradley had the line pushed way up front... too far to compensate for the lack of speed.