US versus El Salvador at Rio Tinto – 9.5.09

Real Salt Lake, Rob Zombie enters game late in second half.

Real Salt Lake Midfielder, Rob Zombie enters game late in second half.

Final whistle. US played wonderful attacking football at times but dodgy defense brings up many questions. See you wednesday when they take on T&T

Extra Time: El Sal mounting serious attacks but nothing is coming from them. US defense is not helping. They need to not give the ball right back. El Sal are a much better side than their position in the table suggests.

Extra time now and El Sal get whistled for an off side. Good call but US living on the edge

89: WOW. Great play all around. Stu Holden muscles his way and wins the ball and sends a great cross that Torres heads powerfully and is AMAZINGLY saved by the El Sal keeper. He is called on up again to make another save of a Stu Holden cross.

87: GREAT save by Howard from a Reyes shot. Very good reflexes. Questions though off the US defense. Gooch and DeMerit are being missed a lot i think

84: US giving the ball up too easily. They’re playing a dangerous game. They need to be able to hold the ball up and kill games if they want to do well at the WC. Altidore off Torres on. Heard a lot about this guy but never seen him play.  Good chance for him to make an impression. He can do so by not giving up the ball easily. El Sal attacking coming in waves now.

82: Hmmm somehow i missed El Sal’s third substitution which happened about 8 minutes ago. Corrales in Quintanilla in.

80: US Substitution. Feilhaber out and Rob Zombie er i mean Beckerman in. Fans excited as local boy comes on.

77: Honduras up 2 goals against the Tobogans and are currently leading the group. This game has taken a slight step down from its frantic pace. US doing a good job of possession.

74: With Holden in, it looks like the US are going with a 4-1-4-1. This is a good move. Keep El Sal at bay and then send the powerful Altidore as the lone striker.

70: El Sal are doing everything right except the final ball which is ATROCIOUS. Davies down after being dispossessed in the box when he should have passed to the streaking Altidore (and by streaking i mean sprinting versus a Will Farrell “lets go streaking” thing). Davies injured and is being subbed out for Stu Holden. TSG headquarters erupting in excitement! Brothers high fiving and hugging!

69: US looking like Spain with their one two passing and deft touches…lovely to watch though no goals for it. El Sal still very dangerous on the counter. 20 minutes left. Should be a cracker…fingers hurting from so much typing

67: US playing attacking football which exposes their defense even more. Romero pass to Zelaya in the box but US defend well. Bradley needs to step up and help out the back 4 and they need to keep possession.

65: Dempsey makes a great run with the ball but sends a weak shot directly at the El Sal keepers knees. Should have done better

63: Great chance for El Sal comes to nothing when Castillo passes to no one instead of shooting. Worrying times for the US defense. Another substitution for El Sal as they go all out on attack. Flores off and Reyes on.

61: Jozy shows his inexperience and touches a ball when he was in the off side position. That could have been 3-1

I see one big issue with the US defense in that they are content to have the play come to them versus challenging the man on the ball. Case and point, right before the disallowed goal, an El Sal player was allowed all the time in the world with the ball as he stood there and looked for a player to pass too. That may work here but won;t at the WC.

57: GOAL DISALLOWED…They say offside but NO WAY was it offside. Altidore latches on to a beautiful through ball from Dempsey and slots it home. Make up call anyone? This was as onside as the first goal was offside. Nice finishing though

53: Spector has just sent in two lovely crosses. He was absent in the first half. Bradley off a quick free kick gets an open look at goal from outside the box but sends his effort WAY over. On the counter, Zelaya i believe wins a corner

50: Substitution for El Salvador – 6 Alvarez out for 8 Romero. Alvarez seems to have a hammy injury

47: Donovan with a crack of a shot that goes just over the bar

Brazil up 2-0 versus Argentina…Poor ol Diego…can you imagine a WC without Argentina…Mexico is going to have to play all out tonight against a solid Costa Rican side to avoid that playoff


OK… How can the MLS consider themselves a top tier league when they don’t take a break for the international break? THATS THE WHOLE POINT!!!! I mean i’m sure each team is a little weaker cause star players arn’t there and fans are cheated as they cannot see their best team play. Man i really want this league to succeed and be respected but the powers to be are absolute numpty’s

PEEP PEEP Halftime of a VERY exciting match. US playing great after a being down a goal.

45: GREAT GOAL: Altidore with a powerful header into the corner of the net. Donovan with a gorgeous cross and an unmarked Jozy sends it to the back of the net. That confirms it for me, Donovan is the best US player this half. US playing great but the first goal was offside. US 2 – El Salvador 1

45: Davies who is all over the place has a great run in the box but the cross is hacked away. End to end stuff here as El Salvador has a shot. On the surface Davies has been the best player but i think Bradley and Donovan are playing great. Dempsey hasn’t done anything of note other than scoring a great goal.

43: GOAL – Dempsey scores a diving header of a Donovan free kick. I think that it was offside but the commentator is pretty emphatic that it wasn’t. They show the replay and i still think he was offside. Doesn’t matter as it really was a beautiful goal. US back in it and playing well. US 1 – El Salvador 1

41: Jozy sends a ball to the far corner and Davies, who is playing excellently almost pokes it in

40: US had a great chance to score through Dempsey who should have buried the ball.

34: El Salvador rampant now and the winger sends in a nice shot that was saved well by Howard. US defense is in shambles but they counter well when Davies latches on to a through ball which goes agonizingly wide.

32: GOAL – Castilla heads the ball in for El Salvador. He really got up but Howard should have done better and was caught in no mans land. That said they shouldn’t even had the chance but Bornstein made a hash of the clearance and presented El Salvador with a half chance which they converted beautifully. Who to blame? Bornstein and Howard should have all done better. US 0 – El Salvador 1

30: Donovan sends a great ball in from a free kick but the US cannot capitalize.

28: Davies beats his defender for pace and sends a great cross to Dempsey who shoots wide…Best chance for the US so far.

25: El Salvador send a shot through the uprights for 3 points (if this was American Football) and Tim Howard has a screaming fit directed at his defenders. The ES forward was allowed WAY too much space and time for that shot and should have done better.

22: Not sure which set of fans are responsible for the music in the background but ITS AWESOME (turns out its the US)…they’re playing “when the saints go marching in”. I think the US fans should take a New Orleans swing band to every game…just saying. Feilhaber gives the ball away cheaply.

20: Lovely passing from the US gets in Bradley’s path and he meanders through the midfield and takes an ambitious but powerful shot that just flashes wide. Commentators annoying me now.

18: Free kick goes straight into the wall and the shot of the rebound lands somewhere in Missouri

17: El Salvador playing well for a spell. Lots of fouls on the pitch. They came here to play and now have a free kick about 15 yards outside the box.

14: I like Bradley (the player). Plays the holding midfielder role well for the US and also has great vision. Could be the US’s most underrated player? He does the dirty work and plays BIG. Personally i think that if he was not suspended for the Confed final that the result might have been different.

12: WOW…9 of the US players have a yellow card and could miss their next game if they get another one…That’s a lot. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to give some of these players a break against T&T so that they reset their yellow card issues and also give some of the fringe players a chance to prove themselves at what will no doubt be a hostile environment and a rough and tumble game.

11: Free kick was poor. Ball bounces to Feilhaber who makes a nice run down the wing but his cross is poor. El Salvador could potentially be dangerous on the counter.

10: Donovan tripped outside the box while on a penetrating run. Excellent position for a free kick. Landon is standing over it.

8: Referee blowing the whistle too much for needles calls. Let them play Ref. Donovan is a really great player but he has the sort of face and demeanor that you just love to hate…am i wrong here?

5: ES get a free kick. Sanchez sends an inviting ball into the box but the forward cannot latch on to it. I apologize now for not being familiar with the El Salvadorian team so i might just refer to them from their shirt numbers or position.

4: US coming out strong with Donovan running things well

1: WHAT THE HELL!!!! ESPN misses the kickoff due to commercial … That’s weak. US get an early corner but nothing off it and then almost get caught at the back.

Stadium seems to be rocking. That’s exciting! In other WCQ (world cup qualifying) news, the world’s best player (Cristiano Ronaldo) may miss out on next years WC due to Portugal’s uninspired 1-1 result against Denmark. There were no other real upsets. England played terribly but eeked out a 2-1 friendly win against Slovenia. BIG games later though with Mexcio versus Costa Rica and Brazil versus Argentina.

National anthems and what not: Whats with this “fair play” slogan thingy said by the players? The Salvadorian fans look as confused as i do. The USMNT can really take a grip on the standings with a win tonight. It important for them, i believe to really come out strong, not only for themselves but to show the rest of the group and world that their strong showing at the confed cup was not a fluke.

Look a Salvadorian viking…who knew

Hello All.

Mark has posted the starting line up. Looks like a strong side though with a bit of a makeshift defense with Marshall at centerback (Demerit and Gooch are out due to injury and suspension respectively). I know no one in the Salvadorian lineup.

4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mark T on 2009/09/05 at 6:22 PM

    “Numpty”…I am going to use that world a lot now.


  2. Posted by Mark T on 2009/09/05 at 6:35 PM

    Shaun…great observation on the defensive issues.


  3. Posted by Antonio H. on 2009/09/05 at 11:54 PM

    That was so not offsides. El Salvadr played a garbage offsides trapped and dempsey who who at the top of the box sniffed it out and capitalized. Excellent officiating


  4. Posted by Kevin on 2009/09/06 at 12:31 PM

    I’ll have to watch it again, but I don’t think Dempsey’s goal was offsides. In the replay I remember seeing him trying push around a defender as the pass was made and it was nowhere near the last defender. Also the called off Altidore goal (I’m leaning more with the commentators on this one) was probably Demspey’s pass had a half follow through that caught the ES players leg. Calling it offsides would have caused a riot because he was nowhere near it.


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