Gotham Bulls Over United: Henry Drops Brace…

…and Juan Agudelo does his “not Eddie Johnson” routine with a solid technical goal.

United ran into a buzz saw this evening and a team that is starting to play the type of ball that Hans Backe envisioned. That said, it’s a radically different feel for the team and Thierry Henry is active and interested.

String together a few games and the “next Beckham” moniker will drop from the Frenchman’s trading card.

As for United, outed a little bit with inexperience, DCU couldn’t protect the backline by clogging the midfield. Tough one.

26 responses to this post.

  1. Oof, that was ugly. DCU showed inexperience on the back line. Lost marks, missed trailing runs – that sort of stuff gets you killed.

    I expected to lose, but not as comprehensively.


    • Posted by dth on 2011/04/21 at 8:19 PM

      Back line was very poor. Fullbacks offered nothing going forward and less in defense. Kitchen had some strange moments. Strangely enough for a guy who just got barraged, I thought Hamid did well in the non-shot stopping aspects of his play. A good sign–so many of our young keepers are wonderful shot stoppers and that’s it.

      The DC midfield/forwards had some decent passages of play and Dax McCarty had some good distribution.

      And. Sourpuss time: all those NYRB guys in Agudelo’s goal had absurd amounts of space. They’d clearly checked out for the game.


    • Posted by Jake C on 2011/04/22 at 5:31 AM

      Matt, interested to hear your thoughts on Davies. He didn’t look too bad to me, in fact I think he was playing at a faster pace than the rest of the team, but saw some criticism of him from others last night.


      • Davies was starved of service last night. He’s not a creator – he needs the ball fed to him in channels. That allows him to use his speed to beat defenders. He got zero usable service from the midfield last night. I lost count of the number of times that he was running parallel to the back line waiting for a through ball only for the pass to go wide instead. If we continue to try to send high crosses to him from the wings, we’re going to be wasting his time with us.


        • Posted by Jake C. on 2011/04/22 at 7:26 AM

          There were a few times he got caught offside–to some commentator’s chagrin–but it looked like he would have been through if his mates had played the ball sooner. Really negative approach overall from DCU’s backline/midfield, IMO.


          • Posted by Andy_4Lakes on 2011/04/22 at 11:29 AM

            It was too bad that the play where Davies was in alone on the keeper the offsides whistle blew. It was clear in the replay that Davies was not offsides (really wasn’t close either). I wonder if the game would have been more competitive if the refs hadn’t royally blown that call?


  2. Posted by dude on 2011/04/22 at 5:05 AM

    Ultimately, this early in the season, I don’t think it matters how much you lose to New York by. A loss is a loss. If we can continue to pick up wins, figuring out chemistry, we maybe can pay them back later in the year. Honestly, though, I’ve been saying it forever: Find anyway to get rid of Boskovic, he is not clinical, fast, strong, and he has not leadership qualities. McCarty’s play isn’t great, but it would be great if we had someone who actually does Boskovic’s job WELL.


    • Interesting. I agree that Boskovic might not be a good fit for this team, but he was the only player in our midfield making smart, confident passes last night. He has outshone McCarty in the last two matches.


  3. Posted by Jake C on 2011/04/22 at 5:44 AM

    Haha “not Eddie Johnson…” Harkes also doing his best “not-John-Harkes” when he’s yelling “Oh my god” in the background after juan’s goal.


    • Posted by daniel on 2011/04/22 at 6:45 AM

      i hate that he used the m-word as comparison. brilliant, brilliant goal nonetheless.


      • Posted by Jake C. on 2011/04/22 at 7:27 AM

        Then he tries to recover–“wait, that looked more like Henry, which makes more sense”


      • Posted by Ufficio on 2011/04/22 at 8:45 AM

        I don’t remember exactly when it was, but Messi did score a goal fairly recently that looked a lot like Agudelo’s. If he’s just comparing the goals, and not the players, I don’t see what the problem is.


  4. Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/04/22 at 7:16 AM

    Re Agudelo-
    Sketchy marking, too much space is irrelevant. That goal has grown-ass man written all over hit. Spatial awareness, great use of his body and a clinical back to the goal finish. Not to beat a dead horse but you could go through EJ and JA’s MLS highlight reels and you won’t see a goal that combines that level of strength, invention and technical execution.
    All good feelings aside (and I’m rooting for him) Davies is going to hit a fitness wall soon and hopefully he is able to recover in time for inclusion in Bob’s Boys of Summer Tour.


    • Posted by Jake C. on 2011/04/22 at 7:29 AM

      The problem with Davies is that so much of his game is based on his ability to run at breakaway pace. Last week vs. Toronto he cramped up late in the game when he tried to do that. Still, he certainly merits consideration as a super-sub.


  5. I’m sure it’s been mentioned a lot around here but surely it’s no bad thing that a young player like Aguedelo is getting some mentoring from TH – I seem to remember a piece on that topic. It’s happening when it’ll do him most good, rather than too late like it might be for some other players. And the influence showed.

    Aguedelo’s really was a good goal – the cross was really miles behind him, so to reach back with a go-go-gadget leg with enough control to pop the ball into shooting position in limited space between defenders and find net like that was truly impressive. I was a bit suspect of Harksey’s assessment that it was Messi-like at first but my initial cynicism was reduced by a couple views of the replay.


    • Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/04/22 at 8:18 AM

      Your suspicion of Harksey’s assessment just confirms our trust in you Tues. He’s the Negative Ray Hudson. Just as ridiculous and unbelievable commentary that replaces overly majesterial platitudes with nonsensical and petty criticisms of players and broadcast partners alike.
      He’s got to be hearing Kyle Martino breathing down his neck.


  6. Posted by Dikranovich on 2011/04/22 at 7:12 PM

    This was one of those strange games where red bulls really scored four goals against the run of play. Possession was In dc favor, just not the finishing. Boscovic hits the post twice. When it was two nil it could easily have been two one, but nice game from red bull. Dc is a little weak at the back. Maybe from inexperience dc united are going to the playoffs this season, no doubt about that


  7. Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2011/04/23 at 1:53 AM

    uh huh you know what it is, agudelo agudelo agudelo!!!


  8. Posted by Steven on 2011/04/24 at 2:32 PM

    It appears European Leagues are beginning to take notice of Agudelo.


    • The big question is whether Agudelo would be better served through PT on the Red Bulls and learning the ropes from Henry, or moving to a team like Atletico where he’d really only be training, albeit with Forlan and Kun Aguero…


      • Posted by dth on 2011/04/25 at 11:35 AM

        Well, presumably he’d be with the Atletico reserves.

        Now, maybe this is a temporary thing, but Agudelo has recently been on the bench for the Red Bulls, and the Red Bull offense looks much the better for it in terms of production.

        Personally, I’d argue against a move to Atletico simply because the team isn’t well managed, it’ll probably get rid of Aguero and Forlan, and the players apparently hate Forlan…because he works too hard. This isn’t a situation for Agudelo to step into, I think.


        • Didn’t know that about Atletico. I’ve known that there’s some locker room shenanigannery surrounding Forlan and his ego, but hadn’t heard it was because he outworks everyone else.

          As for the team being mismanaged, I know they have a habit of underwhelming, but they managed to hold onto both star players this past summer (Aguero had Chelsea eyeing him up and Forlan was the WC darling). Not that they won’t offload them, but they’ve shown that they want to hang on to them (at least until the price is right).

          I wouldn’t mind seeing Agudelo in the reserves instead of pulling a Jozy/Freddy, but I would concur mismanagement (if true) isn’t a situation a budding talent should step into.


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