Sunday, July 22, 2012

More Points Dropped

KC's offense continues to struggle at home, as for the third straight game last night, KC couldn't find the back of the net at Livestrong Sporting Park as the New England Revolution came in and earned a point in a 0-0 draw.  Sporting has now gone 325 minutes since Julio Cesar's goal against Toronto, the last one scored at home by KC.  The team record for home goals appears to be 367 minutes, set from the end of the 1998 season through the beginning of the 1999 season.  From a team with so much offensive firepower, this is quite disturbing.

It was actually the Revolution that came out with the smarter play from the start.  In the fourth minute, Ryan Guy got played in by Benny Feilhaber, but Jimmy Nielsen came up with the save as Guy was forced to shoot from long range with Aurelien Collin closing him down.  The Revs continued to have the better of the early play and thought they'd taken the lead in the 15th minute off a corner.  Lee Nguyen played in a driven corner to the back post where Guy laid out on a diving header.  Nielsen got his fists and punched the ball away, but the Revolution players argued that the ball had crossed the line.  The replays appear in conclusive, but it is extremely close on whether the whole ball crossed the line or not.  As the half wore on, KC started to get more possession of the ball, and in the 21st minute had their first decent opportunity of the match, when New England couldn't clear their end and Jacob Peterson let fly with a shot from just outside the box that curled wide of the post.

KC picked up the pressure in the second half, and in the 52nd minute had their best opportunity of the game.  Michael Harrington played a low cross into the box for Peterson, who did a great job of flicking the ball on towards the back post, but New England goalkeeper Matt Reis did a good job of laying out to palm the shot away for a corner.  The game started to open up a little more as KC pushed forward more leaving themselves open at the back and New England tried to take advantage of that.  New England was the team that looked more likely to take advantage of it though, Saer Sene knocked a Chris Tierney free kick back across the face of goal but no Revolution player was able to follow the shot.  Matt Besler was called into action as well to block another effort from Guy as the game looked destined for 0-0. 

In stoppage time, KC had a half chance off a Besler throw in.  On the play, Kei Kamara went up with Reis to try and win the header.  Reis got a hand on it, but got an elbow from Kamara in the forehead in the process.  Paulo Nagamura skied the rebound as Reis went to ground.  It wasn't an intentional elbow from Kamara on the play, and he immediately checked on Reis when he went down.  It wouldn't surprise me though if the disciplinary committee at least took a second look at the play because Kamara led with the elbow and it was reckless as Reis got busted open.  Even with the extra stoppage time added on to the initial 5 minutes, KC was unable to find the net and had to settle for only a point as the offense continues to struggle to find net at home.  It's not often a team scores more on the road, but KC is doing that right now, in 11 road games, KC has scored 15 goals (1.36 GPG) while in their 10 home games, KC has only scored 11 (1.1 GPG) and only 8 since the home opening 3-0 win over the Revs earlier this season.  Less than a goal a game in the 9 home games since the opener.

Wizards Man of the Match - Aurelien Collin - Shut down the Revs attack after their early start, did a great job of keeping Guy and then Sene in check for the majority of the game before he heads off for the All Star game.

Honorable Mention - Matt Besler

Player Ratings - Nielsen 7, Harrington 6, Collin 8, Besler 8, Sinovic 7, Nagamura 6, Zusi 5, Peterson 6, Convey 5, Sapong 4, Kamara 5.  Subs Thomas 6, Saad NR, Olum NR


bfos said...

How much longer does Vermes remain unassailable?

As you say, for a team with so much offensive talent, they seem to show no tactical ability to harness it.

Relying solely on working the ball up the touchlines isn't cutting it anymore. It just might be time to consider using the midfield.

Nathan W Martin said...

Definitely agree that the team is way too dependent on the aerial cross into the box from the right side.

Both the Petersons have shown the ability to the play the ball on the ground up the middle.

The team could definitely improve by being more balanced, however, the crosses did suffer from Chance Myers absence.

bfos said...

I do agree, I think Jacob Peterson represents a lifeline to the lackluster use and play of the midfield. I don't know if I'm more impressed with his work rate or his surprising technical ability.

The offensive issues where manifest well before Myers absence. Having his frequent, careless turnovers taken out of the game is a net positive for me.

eelgrassman said...

Olum was only in for a couple of minutes, yet still almost cost us the game a couple of times with sloppy plays. At this point, I get queasy almost any time he steps on to the pitch in league play.

MOUF said...

our "offense talent" isnt really very talented, just good athletes. Not sure if thats really firepower.

we also have an attacking mid that pretty much can only generate from set pieces