Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
It's all about 'US'
by Mike Woitalla, June 4th, 2009 7AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[TV WATCH]If you believe ESPN2's commentators, Costa Rica didn't beat the USA by playing good soccer. The Ticos were simply fortunate that the Americans made a lot of mistakes. If you thought for a second that Costa Rica scored some brilliant goals, the ESPN2 experts quickly set you straight.

Within two minutes of kickoff, Alvaro Saborio scored with a perfectly placed 19-yard shot. Color commentator John Harkes admitted it was an "excellent finish." But if you were admiring, during the replays, how Saborio avoided being sandwiched by Pablo Mastroeni and Jose Francisco Torres by flicking the ball between them and regaining his balance in time to launch the looping shot over keeper Tim Howard, Harkes explained the goal happened because "He should not have that much space!"

Then at halftime comes Alexi Lalas, who refused to give Costa Rica any credit for its effort. Lalas, as though he were a U.S. fan in the stands, described the first half as "garbage." There had been some good, entertaining soccer -- if you were watching both teams.

"You got to get a foot in there" Lalas told us during a replay of Saborio evading the feet of both Mastroeni and Torres in what some of us might describe as a superb dribbling maneuver.

The Costa Ricans strung 12 passes together to score their second goal. If you were interested in who was making those passes you didn't get their names from play-by-play man JP Dellacamera, who was busy talking about U.S. players and their yellow-card problems up until the shot that scored.

The combination of precise passes that created the second goal didn't yield a compliment from Harkes. Instead, he advised the Americans to: "Get the tackles in and don't allow them to play so simply around them." As if the only reason the Ticos threaded their way up field so efficiently was because the Americans weren't trying.

Harkes was right to point out that Michael Bradley looked fatigued when he was beaten on the third goal. Harkes was also correct to question CoachBob Bradley pulling Torres at halftime and to criticize his sub, Sacha Kljestan. But during the second half after they went up 3-0, Harkes couldn't muster a word of praise for the Costa Ricans, whom he said could be tamed if someone just had the guts to take a "crack" at one of them.

For sure, the U.S. performance left much to be desired and criticism was deserved. But to see every attacking success as a defensive failure - ignoring the skill, effort and acumen of the successful team - is a dismal way of viewing the game of soccer.

 

 



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
NWSL: Reign's Fishlock sidelined with fractured tibia    
Jess Fishlock, an NWSL Best XI pick in each of her three seasons with the Seattle ...
MLS Week 9: Weekend schedule    
One of five Saturday afternoon matches features the Montreal Impact, first in the Eastern Conference, against ...
Soccer gets new Vegas pitchman: David Beckham    
A surprise pitchman at Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis' Thursday meeting with Las Vegas government officials ...
MLS Countdown: FC Dallas looks to rebound quickly    
FC Dallas, which plays at the New York Red Bulls in a battle of 2015 conference ...
Alex Morgan flexes her social media muscle    
If U.S. women's national team players want to show off their clout to make their case ...
What They're Saying: Seattle Sounders sports scientist Dave Tenney    
"One of the biggest red flags we have is guys that have kids. Almost across the ...
U.S. U-19 men fall to Slovakia on the way to final    
The Brad Friedel-coached U.S. U-19 men's national team, having already clinched a spot in the Slovakia ...
Video Pick: Dog invades field, kisses player    
The hound who ran onto the field during a Copa Libertadores game seemed especially happy to ...
What They're Saying: Tweet from Argentine club Tigre    
"Carrying the club inside you won't just be a metaphor." -- Tweet from Argentine club Tigre ...
Awards: Club America's Sambueza takes top CCL honor    
Captain Rubens Sambueza, who provided seven assists in nine starts in leading Club America to the ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives