Live Commentary: USA vs. Panama

Loyd in for Pearce. Clark in for Feilhaber. Away we go.

Back in action?

58 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 6:01 PM

    Why no feilhaber? Seemms like a relatively flat 4-4-2 that would have some intentions of being staggered. Zuis pushed inward a bit with Shea out wide of course. Feilhaber for Clark in a diamond would seem more “proactive,” no?


    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:06 PM

      Clark = #6, Zusi presumably #8.

      Would prefer a four-banded formation, personally.


      • Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 6:22 PM

        Is it not 4-across though? Pretty MB-Edu-esque if you ask me


        • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:23 PM

          4-4-2 is three bands (of men on defense); 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 often plays as four bands. With a 4-4-2 it’s consequently harder to possess and easier for between-the-lines players to find joy.


    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:08 PM

      Not sure what Jones is doing in this formation. Klinsmann has a weird fascination with defensive midfielders out on the wing. If it didn’t work with Michael Bradley and it didn’t work with Danny Williams…#chinscratch…maybe it won’t work.

      Nah, I’m crazy.


  2. Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 6:01 PM

    Good to see Loyd get a deserved start, especially for Pearce. And good to see Feilhaber pay for his “baby games” (from the mouth of Taylor Twellman, LOL) with a spot on the bench!! I’m tired of his act- he was doing that vs. Philly last year in MLS.

    Although, I’m never happy to see Ricardo Clark. I guess Coach K is just going with a more conservative lineup due to playing in central America.


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 6:12 PM

      I got a conversation going between Leander and Jeff on ESPN! I actually agree with Leander for once- we are both happy Feilhaber is out- probably for different reasons though. I see Jeff’s point that there is basically no creativity with Benny out, but he was an embarrassment acting like a toddler the other night. Although, again I’m sure its more a case of playing on the road and in a 4-4-2.

      Everyone seems to be happy to see Loyd over Pearce. That is good.

      Yes, I just replied to my own post.


  3. Posted by Tyler on 2012/01/25 at 6:02 PM

    Taking pictures in your plazas! Go Nats!


  4. Posted by Eric on 2012/01/25 at 6:10 PM

    I’ve seen a couple sites listing the US lineup as a 4-4-2 but that doesn’t seem to fit Klinsmann’s idea. To me, it still looks like it could very well be a 4-3-3 like this:


    Anyone have thoughts on this? I’m very aware that I could be completely off on this.


    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:14 PM

      US Soccer twitter feed seems to think it’s a 4-4-2, so….unless there’s an eff up there (KAMMARMAN!), it would seem to be square peg, round hole.


      • Posted by Eric on 2012/01/25 at 6:17 PM

        Fair enough. If it is a 4-4-2, I still don’t think it will be a balanced one then. Zusi has too much of a tendency to drift inside while shea will stay wide. I do wonder where the creativity is going to come from though.


        • Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 6:24 PM

          Honestly, I don’t think Germaine* gets enough credit for the creative aspects of his game.


  5. Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:41 PM

    It’s charming the extent to which twellman will advocate for an English-style 4-4-2. For Taylor, the 4-4-2 is the solution to all problems.


  6. Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:41 PM

    Shea concussed or just stunned there?


  7. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 6:45 PM

    GRAY-HAM ZUSI. That is all.


  8. Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 6:45 PM

    Who’s the play by play guy? I like him.


    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 7:19 PM

      To follow up on my own comment: I’d love this guy to do MLS.


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 7:25 PM

      on ESPN3? He’s the ESPN Deportes guy. I forget his name, LOL I was talking about him after the Venezuela game.


      • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 7:29 PM

        Well he’s good. I prefer him to Adrian Healy, who’s not bad…but bland.


        • Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 8:31 PM

          I think Ricardo Ortiz is his name. Yeah, I like him- he is funny. I like some of his word choices- you can tell English is not his first language and he is trying to pick the right words. But he is creative and kind of funny.


        • Posted by EFG on 2012/01/26 at 6:47 AM

          I thought Ortiz was dreadful. He…spoke…like…this and his “Goal” call was so contrived.


          • Posted by Bode on 2012/01/26 at 9:45 AM

            I’m pretty sure you could tell he was thinking “Is it okay for me to do the ‘Gooooool’ call on English broadcast? Eff it, I’m doing it anyways,” before doing a kind of half-assed one. I thought it was hilarious


    • I want Ian Darke back. Even if it means Harkes is coming with him.


  9. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 6:57 PM

    If Teal’s eyes were open tat would have been a goal on the Brekaway


  10. Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 7:01 PM

    Shea’s far off his best so far–looks very mechanical.


  11. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 7:02 PM

    Lloyd caught sleeping on the trap. Brek’s yawns are contagious.


  12. Posted by John henry on 2012/01/25 at 7:07 PM

    Teal bunbury’s first touch is literally worse than mine.


  13. Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 7:18 PM

    So…who besides Rimando is actually playing well?


  14. Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 7:27 PM

    Was DeLaGarza keeping the Panamanian striker onside on that breakaway?! He was the only guy even close to be doing so.


  15. Posted by maxq on 2012/01/25 at 7:47 PM

    So far I think the enthusiastic trumpet player in the crowd is Man of the Match.


  16. Posted by kaya on 2012/01/25 at 7:52 PM

    Honestly, do we need to give Clark so many consolation minutes? I don’t think there’s two more solidly left feet on one man on either team.


  17. Posted by Tyler on 2012/01/25 at 8:03 PM

    Quick poll…Do you go down on your way into the box with a bad touch in competition?


  18. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 8:05 PM

    Panama exhausted from all the pressing. I say we push for an extra goal.


  19. Posted by Union on 2012/01/25 at 8:13 PM

    This has been a pretty bad display by the US, at least IMO.


  20. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 8:26 PM

    Damn Sapong should have started. What a baller.


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/01/25 at 8:34 PM

      Forget anything good I said about Bunbury the other day. He was terrible and Sapong absolutely pwned him (if I may) in the hold up role.


  21. Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/25 at 8:30 PM

    Rimando MOTM with Honorable Mentions for Sapong & Wondo IMO


  22. Very harsh red card for Cameron. I thought he did a good job to recover for Parkhust’s error, but a little bit of a flop, and no hesitation for the ref. I understand from the ref’s point of view though, if it’s a foul Cameron’s the last man and he is obligated to show red, but I’m not sold on the foul.


    • Posted by dth on 2012/01/25 at 9:20 PM

      Not sure Cameron was the last man. It looked to me at the time that Parkhurst was close enough to make a play.


      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/01/26 at 10:26 AM

        It is not whether somebody is the last man per se, Law 12 states “denying an obvious goal-scoring opportunity….. punishable by freekick or penalty”.

        So, basically if that was further out, it would have been yellow as the other defenders “could have” recovered, therefore not denying obvious goal-scoring opportunity.

        Personally I would question the actual contact / foul. Did the striker run across Cameron to manufacture contact? I couldn’t say so from what I saw. I don’t think the other two defenders would have intervened. The ref was a fair distance from the “foul”, in the replays, the linesman was out of shot…


        • True it is about denying a goal scoring opportunity, but depending on the interpretation of the ref the last defender fouling the attacker is perceived as denying a clear goal scoring opportunity as they took away the chance of the one v one. For me, Cameron’s “foul” was correct as a red if the ref commits to calling it as a foul, but I have my doubts as to whether it was even a foul. That didn’t look like nearly enough contact to merit a foul much less the flop by the Panamanian attacker.


  23. Posted by Union on 2012/01/25 at 9:44 PM

    Pretty disappointed in the US effort to be honest. I was impressed, again, with Jones and Sapong. But the rest? The vision and overall feel for the game at this level just seems to be lacking w/ this crew. All too often there was an inability to pull the trigger on the pass and while players were holding the ball for an extra 1-2 seconds, Panama repositioned, the open US player was covered and the only ball worth playing was a negative pass or the all too typical “launching the ball 30 yards up the field and hoping it takes a good bounce”. Shea, in particular, bothered me. He inarguably was the most skilled player on the field in terms of ball skills and raw talent, but he seemed timid and indecisive. He needs to take defenders on, run at them, and make things happen. He seemed way too ready to give the ball up in the past two games. I also was pretty unimpressed with Jeff L., Teal, and the entire defense. The central defenders held up fairly well again, but they were way more shaky in this game than on Saturday. And the LB/RBs. Man. The backs. They are bad, I’m sorry. 0 feel for distribution. Too comfortable with the speed of play in the MLS, I hate to say it. On a positive note, Sapong showed he is a fearless guy and really impressed in his very limited minutes. I’d love to see this guy get a full 90.

    No matter what, a win is a win. That is 3 in a row for Jurgen. Here’s to hoping the success continues once the A lineup is back on the field.


    • Posted by Antonio H. on 2012/01/26 at 5:16 AM

      I think Wondolowski deserves a mention. Teal’s play probably made him seem like he didn’t play well, But he did well in the false nine role, very quick thinking and has a high IQ


  24. Posted by Alex on 2012/01/26 at 1:51 AM

    I was not impressed with Jones. Obviously he’s a good player but he must’ve overlooked the opposition because there were times where it looked like he thought he could just wait and wait with the ball only to get dispossessed from behind. Seriously play with a sense of urgency and release the damn ball dude. All in all it was an awfully boring game. Zusi isn’t a winger. We reverted back to that damn 4-4-2 again. Bunbury looked awful, Shea showed a little but not much at all and we were lucky to win this. Harsh red call too but I can understand that one


  25. I wonder if Shea’s first-half woes were due to getting cracked in the face point blank with the ball? Definitely an off game from him, but he was much more alive in the second half.


  26. Posted by Bode on 2012/01/26 at 9:56 AM

    I think it’s important to watch these strongly MLS January games with the mindset that you’re watching the US reserve team. We’re looking for guys who can come into the “full” National team and do a job for us. If we find 2-3 guys who we can count on, then we’ve done well. If we can get young guys some playing experience and help them improve, we’ve also done well. I remember watching Shea in a friendly like this a couple years back thinking that he would never do anything for the US and wondering what all the hype is about.

    My takeaways from the game:

    1) Jermaine Jones. His two performances have been encouraging. I think a couple of the times he gave away the ball could be attributed to the lack of quality around him.

    2) Good for all the young players to get the experience of going into a Central American stadium and grinding out a result with 10 men. That would have been 3 points in qualifying.

    3) Did anyone else notice that Panama’s coach had a clone on the bench?

    4) As a US fan, it’s great to have confidence in whatever GK we trot out. How many clubs/countries have reoccurring GK issues?


    • Posted by Bode on 2012/01/26 at 9:58 AM

      5) Though it drove Twellman crazy at times, I thought we did a good job of keeping possession and trying to “kill” the game. This was not the bunker-style holding on to games that we’re used to and it is an encouraging sign.


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2012/01/26 at 10:15 AM

      The’s Julio’s brother Jorge who coaches the youth side. I know my Panama.


      • Posted by Union on 2012/01/26 at 10:36 AM

        One small point re: the experience gained from playing in Central America for the “young guys”. Are there really many “young guys” on the team? Bunbury, Zusi, Sapong, Shea….but other than that, its a team of veterans who haven’t (and likely won’t) make the cut for the senior team.

        Good point though, that its worth remembering these are reserve team games. Definitely true. Just frustrating to watch a game that lacks quality, its a reminder of how shallow the player pool is for the national team.


  27. Posted by John henry on 2012/01/26 at 10:08 AM

    Whereas on the weekend, the team looked composed, quick, and decisive on the ball, yesterday they were sloppy and wasteful. Still, I think it’s remarkable how the style has changed. It appears klindmanns philosophy is actually catching on an making a difference.

    I suspect klinsmann wanted them to concentrate on killing the game more than on scoring a second


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