Posted 2011/04/01 by matthewsf in USMNT. Tagged: Juan Agudelo. 30 Comments
Welcome to the Gold Cup Spotlight Series.
First up? Man of the moment Juan Agudelo.
He’s got the steak and the snizzle, ‘fo shizzle.
Posted by John on 2011/04/01 at 7:45 AM
I still say I need some studio time, a hook up with Wiz Khalifa to record “Agudelo Agudelo” over his “Black and Yellow” beats.
Posted by Jay Bell on 2011/04/01 at 9:31 AM
I’m eagerly awaiting this production…
Posted by John on 2011/04/01 at 9:40 AM
Yeah ah ha
you know what it is
eah ah ha, you know what it is
everything I do, I do it big
Yeah ah ha, scorin thats nothin
when I put one in the net, thats stuntin
reppin my Country when you see me you know I’ll be runnin
I put it down from my Headers to my First Touch
Posted by John on 2011/04/01 at 10:01 AM
Uh, White stripe, blue kits
the Tobagans scared of it but them Tricolores aint.
soon as I hit the pitch look at them players face
hit the speed once make the Outlaws shake
pride inside, engine roaring
it’s the big game you know that I’m up for it
and I got the pedal to the metal
got you writers checking game, I’m scoring out on every level
hear them haters talk but there’s nothing you can tell em
just scored another goal, got another million on my schedule
no love for em refs breaking hearts
no dives, push to start
Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/04/01 at 10:06 AM
isn’t there something in the rules about this?
Posted by Jake C on 2011/04/01 at 7:50 AM
Great vid. Kid’s already got a decent highlight reel building up, and he hasn’t played that many games. Good stuff
Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/04/01 at 8:24 AM
Great vid for a young guy still making his bones.
He projects, both on and off the field, as having the right mix of wanting it but comfortable with who and what he is. To come into the game with Arg as confident as he did and score a “want it more” goal on a big stage just really does set him apart from Jozy at this stage.
Looking forward to seeing Charlie D. back at 100% and then you’re starting to scare people.
Posted by FutbolAmerica on 2011/04/01 at 9:17 AM
So maybe this has been answered before, but why is he not with the U-20 team?
I think the experience of the U-20 world cup qualifying matches and playing with the other up-and-coming players would be beneficial. And it’s not as if Bobby Wood, Joseph Gyau, and Conor Doyle are going to bring the level of his game down.
Posted by dth on 2011/04/01 at 9:29 AM
He’s not on the u-20 team because he was with the senior team, and it would be a pain to re-integrate him after missing training camp, one game, etc. He’ll probably go to the Gold Cup instead of the u-20 World Cup because he’s senior team quality. Which is fine.
Posted by Paula on 2011/04/01 at 10:42 AM
Agudelo is obviously very young, and one does wonder what potential crucial developmental step he’s missing by not playing tournaments with guys closer to his age and experience level.
If I’m to believe the commentary here (as well as Kyle Martino’s during the PAR friendly) he’s got a “mature” read on the game that acquits him with the senior team, but still …
Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/04/01 at 10:03 AM
Nice prospect.: <)
Posted by usry723 on 2011/04/01 at 12:37 PM
Good job, man.
I understand the caution of hyping him up, but I think people are letting their fears get in the way of recognizing a really special talent that he haven’t seen in years.
Posted by matthewsf on 2011/04/01 at 1:46 PM
Mr Usry: Your comment will “receive” this major point.
I was going to write a column, but I think I’ll just drop this bomb here.
I love that there are a wealth of journos our there “tempering enthusiasm” about Juan Agudelo–who I was a skeptic about until I watched play in person”–by the way, bit part of Agudelo here…he loses the ball, he chases it down–
Anywho, I love everyone invoking comparisons to Eddie Johnson which make no sense to me because of EJ’s hot streak in what 2004 or 5. Anybody who witnessed EJ’s game always had this thought “man I hope they find him up the field challenging the backline so we can beat them to the spot when he’s played in”
Not once did I think–like I thought is/was possible with Jozy Altidore–“hey EJ can lead the line.”
Everyone brings up EJ, but nobody brings up Landon Donovan who at 19 went senior team and who at 20 went to the World Cup. If Agudelo makes the 2014 team–big if–he’ll be older than when Donovan went in 2002.
Given the maturation of Agudelo’s game, Donovan is a much better comp for him. Donovan bombed in the Bundesliga and came back and then had a strong MLS and US-World Cup run.
My premise on what I perceive as holier-than-you attitude of journos who like to slam this talent.
One, they’re either curmudgeons or they talk in this manner because Agudelo’s soccer upbringing didn’t allow them many observations.
All these journos are talking about how we’ve only seen one or two games out of him.
Hans Backe was raving about him last year (coach’s don’t like to rave) and he’s been Alfonso Mondelo’s radar for sometime.
Anybody who’s seen Agudelo play knows he “makes mistakes” through lack of education, not lack of understanding.
Anywho, my Friday rant is over. Glad I didn’t pen a column. Good night. :>
Posted by kaya on 2011/04/01 at 2:11 PM
FWIW. I figured people’s tempered enthusiasm had more to do with Altidore than EJ.
Posted by matthewsf on 2011/04/01 at 2:46 PM
I always thought the enthusiasm on Altidore was his physique less his game play and vision, no?
Posted by dth on 2011/04/01 at 2:57 PM
Well, Altidore was a pretty good dribbler for his size and had good ability cutting in.
One thing that’s happened to Altidore that I question: I don’t doubt that Altidore is in good enough shape. But I question whether he’s put on too much muscle. Watch a highlight tape of Altidore in MLS sometime–he looks far more agile, and isn’t exactly a stick figure either.
Posted by Alex on 2011/04/02 at 7:10 AM
Yeah, I’ve been saying the same thing about Altidore. It’s as if he is changing his game and even getting bigger to fill that target striker role that, in the end, isn’t really his game. I think he’d be far more effective in a forward-3 on the wing, but on every team he is the more advanced striker in a forward 2 (don’t know what the deal is at Bursa, but I think he’s on the wing).
Posted by kaya on 2011/04/01 at 3:18 PM
Well, I certainly thought Jozy showed potential for both, though I’ve never seen him play in person. And I guess I’m a little wary after thinking he could do a lot more than he has.
I remember when EJ and Deuce came onto the scene in the 06 cycle and for EJ I never really saw “it” beyond the physical talent. So I’m not sure why JA and EJ would warrant much of a comparison either… but I didn’t know everyone was making this comparison =)
Posted by BernieBernier on 2011/04/02 at 7:41 AM
I am not sure its one person that leads to the temper the hype. Whether it was Donovan (going to Champions League stalwart), EJ with the Nats, Freddy Adu and his commercial with Pele, Altidore sadly heading down the Adu road (can’t see him in a Big 4 league next year), the US tends to over hype people. That is the way our country works. Even in the comment section here (which I consider to be the most rational even kneel site out there) there were a couple when will we get a Messi type comments.
I am all for giving Agudelo his due (and we as fans should) but lets make sure we avoid the whole savior of US soccer complex that the “regular” media falls into (this is shows like Sports Center, PTI, Sports Illustrated, etc). Fair or not there is a big difference between a ShinGuardian or SBI article and a Sports Illustrated piece.
Agudelo shouldn’t (and hasn’t been) seen as the savior that will bring us a World Cup in 2014. He is not even on the Nilmar (seen that comparison made), Muller, Neymar, Pato, level yet,
Posted by MJ on 2011/04/01 at 2:30 PM
Assuming both were fit and in form, would an Agudelo/Davies pairing make tactical sense? As in, would their respective skill sets compliment each other? This is all strictly hypothetical since Davies is still earning his way back in, but it got me wondering.
Posted by matthewsf on 2011/04/01 at 2:45 PM
Well there is no one line-up for all occasions.
I think you have to hold on Davies. He needs to prove at the MLS level that he can make a defense account for him. He’s not there yet. He’s got three goals…two from the spot, one because a defender slipped.
As for the pairing, I think the Yanks need to find someone who can play consistent target-and-hold-up and importantly someone who can actually head the ball. None of the strikers–save Buddle–are adept at heading.
Right now, Jozy should stay. He’s got ability, he just makes mistakes that he shouldn’t be making.
I think you’re looking at Teal Bunbury next as an Agudelo strike partner. Ability to play some hold-up but also he’s pretty fast. I would imagine that’s the next look for Coach Sweats.
Posted by usry723 on 2011/04/01 at 7:58 PM
I hope so. Agubury needs to return ASAP. They worked well together. I can only imagine that they’ll be even more dynamic surrounded by the A team.
Posted by kaya on 2011/04/01 at 1:58 PM
reminds me a little of Davies’ scrappy near post goal that seemed to be his revelatory moment.
Posted by kaya on 2011/04/01 at 3:22 PM
I was referring to Davies’ confed cup goal vs Egypt, which I thought was his first with the USMNT like Agudelo’s vs Argentina… but Davies 1st was in fact against T&T in qualifying.
Posted by Jay Bell on 2011/04/01 at 6:33 PM
Well then it is an even better comparison because both goals were the second USMNT goal for each player.
Posted by s44 on 2011/04/01 at 4:02 PM
Anybody else planning to catch tomorrow evening’s U-20 qualifier? 6pm EDT. First competitive game for the US (Suriname is a poor joke). Lletget (finally, it seems, himself again after the big mono setback) and Kitchen perhaps with a shot at 2014?
Posted by dth on 2011/04/01 at 4:19 PM
Not sure how competitive it’s going to be: suspect Rongen holds back a few players because of yellow card issues. Really, everyone on the field has some skill/ability, so it’s hard to single out guys in particular…except (as usual) for left back: Greg Garza looks a little slow to me, sadly.
Posted by Alex on 2011/04/02 at 7:22 AM
The US should coast the Panama game, but the next round looks tricky. If the USA wins, they will likely face Guatemala, who would probably be boosted by a home crowd in a do-or-die match, and would likely also be boosted by probably homer calls on the part of the already terrible refs they have working this thing, especially the 2nd and 3rd officials. If the USA loses this game, then they’ll likely face Honduras, who looked great going forward against Jamaica with some very good players from Olimpia. Either way, the next round will be the true test.
Garza looked GREAT against… Suriname. But still, he was pretty mobile and in fact, in my opinion, had the best game of any US player, with the exception maybe of Doyle or Kitchen. His crosses after some nice 1-2’s with the central midfielders were money, and he did very well defensive. He looks much fitter than the last time I saw him play. I think, let’s hope he shows well at the WYC and see what happens when his Traffic contract is up.
The big test for Garza will be against Orrantia of Mexico and Pumas, who looked absolutely terrific for them. I’d say over half a dozen kids on the Mexican side are already first teamers. The final (knock on wood) will be a tough game for the US.
Posted by s44 on 2011/04/02 at 9:08 AM
I think you have it backwards — the Guats have homefield in today’s game too, you know, and only need a draw to top the group.
Posted by dth on 2011/04/02 at 11:46 AM
I think that quarterfinal should be a tough game; in a one-shot we could lose. It’s just our luck to be matched up against the only bracket with two comparatively good teams. We’d destroy either Cuba or Canada…unless Russell Teibert went absolutely crazy*.
* Speaking of Teibert: why has there not been more hype? He’s really good!
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