Commentary

USA-Uruguay Men's Friendly Ratings

USA-URUGUAY EXPRESS:
June 5 in Kansas City
USA 0 Uruguay 0.
Att.: 19,569.

Against the most formidable opponent of its 2022 World Cup preparations, the USA played to a scoreless stalemate against Uruguay on Sunday. While the U.S. attack faded as the game went on, central defender Walker Zimmermann provided the most impressive performance for the Americans. 

USA Player Ratings
(1=low; 5=middle; 10=high.)

GOALKEEPER

Sean Johnson's first test came on a powerful 14-yard shot straight to him by Manuel Ugarte that he deflected over the goal. In the second half, from two yards out, Mathías Olivera's shot banged off Johnson's shin. The final of his third saves came on a weak free kick down the middle by Darwin Nunez. 

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)
6 Sean Johnson
(New York City FC) 10/0 (33)

DEFENDERS

DeAndre Yedlin cleared a 10th-minute shot off the line by Diego Godín and his first cross created a half-chance for Jesus Ferreira. The right back failed to control a pass from Johnson that would have sent him on a flank attack and lost another ball before the first half ended. Uruguay's early threatening attacks came down the side of left back Joe Scally, who defended more solidly after the early phases. His midfield slide tackle late in the first half sparked a U.S. attack. Scally moved to right back when Antonee Robinson replaced Yedlin in the second half. Central defender Aaron Long's lackadaisical pass to Johnson in 42nd minute fortunately for the USA resulted only in an Uruguay corner kick. Long's central partner Walker Zimmerman headed clear back-to-back lethal corner kicks late in the first half. His second-half defending, such the late tackle that denied Diego Rossi a clear shot on goal, stifled Uruguayan forays as the backline play looked increasingly vulnerable. Among the most promising U.S. attacks came after Zimmerman's passes to Pulisic in the first half, including the sequence that ended with Jesus Ferreira's 19th-minute shot that was saved.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)
4 DeAndre Yedlin (Inter Miami) 74/0 (28)

7 Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC) 30/3 (29)

5 Aaron Long (NY Red Bulls) 25/3 (29)

4 Joe Scally (Borussia M'gladbach/GER) 2/0 (19)

MIDFIELDERS

Recently recovered from injury, Weston McKennie played the first 45 minutes. His ambitious bicycle kick attempt went awry and his long-range left-footed shot went weakly far wide. He helped out Yedlin on defense and with a nifty back-heel pass combined with Pulisic on a one-two. After spending most of the first half defending, Yunus Musah became the most effective midfielder in transition play into the Uruguayan half. Tyler Adams, although mostly defense-minded, made a couple promising runs into Uruguayan territory. His long-range shot late in the first half went straight to the keeper. He bailed out the backline in the 76th minute.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)
4 Weston McKennie (Juventus/ITA) 33/9 (23)

6 Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig/GER) 29/1 (23)

5 Yunus Musah (Valencia/ESP) 18/0 (19)

FORWARDS

Jesús Ferreira, notable for pressuring defenders and goalkeeper Fernando Muslera, had his first shot saved by Muslera. His second was an unsuccessful header from a hard-to-reach cross. Tim Weah failed to break through down the right wing after his low cross shortly kickoff was cleared. Christian Pulisic, who in the 12th minute intercepted a pass from Diego Godin and delivered a cross too high for Weah to connect well with, managed one shot — from a Musah pass in the second half — that went far wide. Besides the delivery to Ferreira, Pulisic failed to find gaps in the Uruguayan defense.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)
5 Tim Weah (Lille/FRA) 24/3 (22)

5 Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas) 11/3 (21)

5 Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG) 50/21 (23)

SUBSTITUTES

Erik Palmer-Brown got beat by Nunez ahead of the golden chance that unmarked Fernando Gorriaran sent into the stands. And Palmer-Brown lost Nunez in stoppage time when Edinson Cavani shot wide on Uruguay's best opportunity of the day. None of the attack-minded subs found a way to penetrate the Uruguayan defense. Left back Antonee Robinson's most promising flank foray ended a corner kick overhit by Pulisic.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

3 Erik Palmer-Brown (Troyes/FRA) 4/0 (25)

4
Brenden Aaronson (Leeds United/ENG) 20/6 (21)

4 
Paul Arriola (FC Dallas) 45/9 (27)

4 Haji Wright (Antalyaspor/TUR) 2/1 (24)

5 Antonee Robinson (Fulham/ENG) 27/2 (24)

NR Luca de la Torre (Heracles/NED) 9/0 (24)

NOTABLE: Uruguay entered the game on a five-game win streak during which it outscored its foes 11-1. 

June 5 in Kansas City 
USA 0 Uruguay 0. 
USA -- Johnson; Yedlin (A.Robinson, 62), Zimmermann, Long (Palmer-Brown, 46), Scally; Musah (de la Torre, 85), Adams, McKennie (Aaronson, 46), Weah (Arriola, 46), Ferreira (Wright, 61), Pulisic.
Ururguay -- Muslera; Giménez (Coates, 35), Godin (Olivera, 46), Caceres; Varela (Pellistri, 68), Ugarte (Valverde, 61), Arambarri (Vecino, 60), Gorriaran (Rossi, 67), Vina; Gomez (Cavani, 61), Nunez.
Yellow cards: USA -- none; Uruguay -- Valverde 82.
Red cards: none.
Referee: Adonai Escobedo (Mexico)
Att.: 19,569. 

Stats:
USA/Uruguay
Shots: 9/12
Shots on target: 3/4
Saves: 3/3
Corner Kicks: 4/4
Fouls: 12/15
Offside: 0/0
Possession: 54%/46%

66 comments about "USA-Uruguay Men's Friendly Ratings".
  1. Wayne Norris, June 5, 2022 at 9:09 p.m.

    Pretty harsh on the subs......Arriola a 4? What did you do wrong?

  2. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 3:28 a.m.

      Well he did not do anything to help attack.  Hence one of the reasons the attacks went downt the left side.  His best play was keeping the ball in play with the slide tackle and attacked late in the match.  He just got tossed around like a rag doll.

  3. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 6:29 a.m.

    Correct you are John

  4. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 11:29 a.m.

    Arriola on my List of; No Bring Any More... We know exactly what we are going to get ... And it's NOT ALL BAD, If a Younger Player goes DOWN Injured for the WC in November, I have NO problem Bringing IN;  Zimmerman, Long, Arriola, Brooks, Morris, Yedlin, Acosta, Johnson,  etc ..
    We know EXACTLY What we are going to get from Each, Not going to get any Better or Any Worse between NOW and NOV.
    And each Could Play a SUB or Starting Role at WC22... But NONE OF THEM WILL BE AROUND FOR WC2026
    Currently, They are Taking Playing and Practice TIME from the u26 that need the Experience, BECAUSE.????(Say it with Me)
    EVERYTHING MUST BE DONE WITH THE IDEA OF WINNING THE WORLD CUP IN 2026.!!!

  5. Sam Bellin replied, June 6, 2022 at 8:06 p.m.

    Santi, I basically agree with your assessment here, with the one big exception being that Zimmerman has turned into one of our very best players over the past 6 months.  He was the Man of the Match against Uruguay by far, needs to start every game in Qatar, and could certainly be a candidate to start as we win the World Cup in 26!
    I know his back story suggests another strong but slow, technically weak CB but he has become much more than that.  His speed and lateral quickness are quite good, (unlike Brooks -- who's lack of any quick-twitch makes him a non-option at this point).  Further Zimmerman's passing is above average and yesterday was really excellent.  He seldom gives the ball away, and he played raking split balls and long balls that led directly to some of our best chances.  And his aerial prowess, tough marking, and leadership make him essential imo.
    Regarding all the other players you listed I am in full agreement (although we might need Long in Qatar if Richards is unable to step up -- the other young CBs can't cut it at this level - at least not yet).

  6. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:33 p.m.

    Sam, I don't Disagree with your assessment of Zimmerman... He is AT THE MOMENT, Our Best Center Back... But Last October ( When Brooks PULLED OUT) ZIMM wasn't even ON THE ROSTER.!!!... GONE, FINISHED, OUT, CAPOUT.... Like Zardes, Lletget, Miazga, He is Dime-A-Dozen... What about EPB.???...What about CCV ???... What about McKenZIE.???... I'll Bet there are others, I'm sure I left someone out.... 
    Richards will be a Starter, when he Regains Health...
    Miles Robinson would have been Starting next to him...
    So Zimm would have been 3rd or 4th(Behind Brooks)
    So, he is Marginal... Our Playing/Developmental Time would be better Spent on The Younger Guys...
    Zimmerman, will still be Zimmerman in November... We got 6 Games to see about the Younger CBs, and Ggg has Wasted 2 of them already.!!!
    ANOTHER REASON HE SHOULD BE FIRED.!!!

  7. frank schoon, June 5, 2022 at 10:08 p.m.

    It wasn't a boring game, but again the opponent played with 3defenders in the back line, which made it kind of risky in the back line. Realize especially in hot weather, you also don't want to play with  3 man in the back, for it means more running for the front and midline. Noticed what a difference it made when Uruguay switched to a 4man back line late in the game, it tightened everything up for them.

    What I like about Uruguay and I wish we could do this is in controlling the ball in small spaces,  holding on to it even if the opponent is on our necks. They are so good, in not getting flustered under pressure in 1v1 situations and move the ball around in small groups with opponents immediately around them...

    One thing I noticed and I saw this same pattern happen against us in the Moroccan game also. The opponent has the ball , one of our players goes after him ,he response by making a short little pass to his  teammate a 5meters away and ofcourse another one of our guys goes after that player, and somehow once we commit our 2players to these two opponent, a third opponent position behind our 2 players for the split pass. This continually happened in this game as well, we commit 2 players who get beaten because the third opponent positions behind them for the pass....

    Another way of doing that is what Frenkie de Jong does at Barcelona whenever he plays Busquet's position at midfield. He begins to dribble, an opponent goes after him and try to avoid him, then he will dribble near another opponent forcing him to also commit. At that moment  de Jong has created a big space or gap left behind them by the two opponents and quickly passes to the open space taken by a Barca player...

    Frenkie de Jong is not interested in beating an opponent what he does is to draw opponents towards him thus utilizing the space left by the opponents....
    This type of soccer is more sophisticated, employing subtle sophisticated indirect methods, than the Turbo ball we play, which is more direct,  in just trying to beat opponent.

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  8. Santiago 1314, June 5, 2022 at 10:38 p.m.

    I did NOT enjoy this Game:

    Santiago 1314, June 2, 2022 at 7:08 a.m.

    I just DON'T see the Point of "Developing" Long(29) and Zimmerman(28)... They are "So-So" Players ... Dime-a-Dozen... We need to see more of EPB(24) and CCV(24) and McKenZIE(23)... Richards is already "A Starter"... and "Shirley" one of them could hold down the other side as well as Zimm-Long...
    EVERYTHING SHOULD BE DONE WITH ONE THING IN MIND;
    WINNING THE WORLD CUP IN 2026.!!!
    Waste of Time.!!! ... Fire the Coach.!!! 
    Really.!?!?!?... Yedlin, Arriola, Johnson


  9. frank schoon, June 5, 2022 at 10:44 p.m.

    Notice Uruguay does it by employing 2 players to draw 2 opponents and De Jong draws
    2opponent to himself than pass. This is what I miss in our game, we don't have smarts,the subtle methods, we just want to crash and burn.... This is what I miss at our midfield as a whole, there is no smarts. The only one I which plays more with his mind is Luca because he's not Turbo and he knows what limitations are. Musah stood out only because the other mids didn't. Musah, is able to make a cute overstep or movement to change directions which make him more watcheable as a midfielder on our team.I only wish he could give nice assists, creative passes. Instead, way like him mainly for how runs with the ball.

    I'm not impressed with McKennie, even  though he's coming off an injury. McKennie and Weah are too similar, I much rather would have a Luca behind Weah.  CP needs someone behind him. Can you imagine a player like Pirlo at mid behind CP to send him.CP is doing way too much for the team which does not fit his play. We need to use only his strengths but much of what he does now goes beyond his capabilities, like Adams, who is NOT good at passing to our attackers , that is not his FORTE. Likewise I see Zimmerman kicking way too many long ball passes upfield that have no effect, whatsoever..When you have a centerback giving passes to our attackers instead of our midfielders, there something wrong...

    Watching Periera, Haji, Pepi, they are so similar in style, this is why it would be refreshing to see Sargent who would add a different mix to the play....

    Not impressed with Long or Scally sofar. I would like to see Scally try as centerback but not outside back. Aaronson, looks like someone winds him up and lets him go on the field. It's all turbo with him, no brains at all....

    Also I miss on corner kicks the positioning for the secondary balls which Uruguay does so well...

  10. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 4 a.m.

      Frank,
    I agree with much of what you say and I think our younger European player pool can play the way (except A. Rob) you describe as most of them do it at club level. I think the issue is not with the players, but the coach actually trying to play that way. I don't believe GB knows how to coach this way.  The European based players are schooled in this in some fashion.  What do you do when the coach does not approach the game this way tactically?  If you defy him you get ousted like Brooks.  Again it all starts and ends with the coach.  And we don't the right one to take our team to the next level.  GB has hit his potential. 

  11. Kerry Solomon replied, June 6, 2022 at 11:27 a.m.

    Some interesting points of view.  I think Aaronson looks a bit helter skelter but he does track opponents well unlike others who forget defensive responsibilities. CV and CB haven't displayed enough because GB has rarely played them over the years.  Scally...who knows.  He hasn't been around due to coaching moves. I like Zimmerman. Not a skilled/finesse player but defends pretty well and is not afraid to mix it up.  Similar things can be said about Arriola. He should make the squad.
    Yedlin's time is done.  He runs around recklessly, doesn't position well and many times commits stupid mistakes.  The team doesn't need errors like that.
    The #9 position is still up in the air. Most of the players that have been tried there have been inconsistent although each has had flashes of brilliance.  None of then have shown have shown the toughness of a Dempsey or McBride who would go toe to toe with opponents while displaying their skills. Neither of them EVER gave up without a fight.  We have no one like that.
    Pulisic is coming into his own and when his mind is in it, he can change a match with his skill and game knowledge.
    Keepers should be Horvath, Steffen and Turner.

  12. Philip Carragher replied, June 6, 2022 at 8:05 p.m.

    Frank, another midfield tactic used by Uruguay, one I rarely see but is very effective is the simple takeover. There was a tight group of players pretty much right in the middle of the field and one of the U players, about three to five yards away from a teammate with the ball, instead of moving away from the player with the ball to create space, which is what usually happens, moved quickly towards that player and took the ball in almost a handoff style of play. We used to teach takeovers, a simple but almost never used tactic. The player that takes the ball then separates very quickly from the pack with the ball.

  13. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:37 p.m.

    Careful Phillip, they will accuse your of being a Karl-Heinz Heddergott "Lover".!!!(Love the Take-Over)

  14. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:42 p.m.

    Kerry, you helped me make my Point.... Aaronson was seen as "A Problem" in the 1st Round of WCQs ... Credit to Ggg for NOT dropping him from the Squad... But, it was "Sticking With" a Younger Player and Not Dropping him that has led to a $30 Million Transfer...
    Ggg should do the Same thing with EPB, CCV and McKenZIE.!!!

  15. frank schoon replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:49 p.m.

    Philip, you're right. But it only shows how far our boys are not up to these standards of play. 

  16. Greedy Striker, June 5, 2022 at 11 p.m.

    If Berhalter chooses the "MMA" midfield (seems a no-brainer if all 3 are healthy), then we shoplifting boss the game against Wales if they choose Ramsey and  Allen in midfield. Both are past their prime. Our young trio is the core of the future along with couple others. Bale and Kane in our group is not good for our back line because we look very shaky at central defence and left back is another concern. Of course, all of this could change by November! Going to have to get some chemistry and keep guys fit! If the US does not at least get out of group play at Qatar then they massively underachieve.

  17. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 6:46 a.m.

    I'm beginning to Think; M-M-Aa
    Our Best (6) Players; according to the Transfer Market are;
    Pulisic, Reyna, Weah, Aaronson, Musah, McKenNIE...
    How do we get them on the Field at the Same Time.???

    Pulisic                   Weah
                   Reyna
        Aaronson
                          Musah
               McKenNIE 
    Jedi.                       Dest
          Richards Adams
              *Horvath*

  18. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 8:53 a.m.

      Santi,
    I like your choices, but I think it would be better to have either Reyna or Aaronson on, not at the same time, mainly as you must play more games to get out of pool play.  I would start Aaronson just for match fitness and limit Reyna's time due to his injury issues.  I would start Scally over Jedi 7 days out of the week. Jedi can't control or pass so give that one up.  I would go with this line-up as I think we will play a 4-2-3-1.  That is 19 players listed. 

                  Sargent (but will be Ferreira)  - The beauty of these three is they can all interchange!
          CP                    Weah/Aa                      Sub at #9 I would go with Wright. He looks more 
                                                                 complete as a striker. Sub - Reyna, 
       McKennie/Aa     Adams     Musah             -  Sub Tillman for Musah, Sub Luca for McKennie, 
                                                                  It is either Busio or Acosta for Adams
    Scally   Carter-Vickers   Richards    Dest  -  Sub - Zimmeman and McKenzie, would like brooks
                                                                            back
                                                                   Sub -  A. Rob, Cannon, Vines and Yedlin

      

  19. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:44 p.m.

    John, my Eyed HURT from trying to figure your Post Out...
    Try again please

  20. John Soares, June 6, 2022 at 12:56 a.m.

    Wow a little harsh on your ratings 
    Especially on the defense 
    Uruguay is a very strong team (11-1 in last 12 games) that included South America's power teams.... and we held them to 0.
    I would think that's reason for celebrating 

  21. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 3:40 a.m.

      John,
    The defense ratings are pretty fair to me.  The defense is and remains the weakest part of the team once again.  We should have conceded at least one of not two goals.  We were so very lucky.  I concur Uruguay is strong, but remember they made so many more changes to the roster from Mexico and we struggled to break them down and contain them.  They are ranked #13 and we are #14.  So this is a team we should be able to beat.  We remained too slow to react to the field switches. It's like we have never seen it before. Our CBs lose confidence in being able to play out of the back so resort to long balls and without the big CF to hold up play we just turn the ball over.  We held the advantage of possession in the first half, but not the second.....one big reason, long balls over the top.

  22. Wooden Ships, June 6, 2022 at 1:57 a.m.

    Like Santi, just something off about it. Horvath should have been in goal, stop jerking him. CP is not good at restarts, what's Greg looking at there, CP again ranging too much, our best most technical unbalancing mid fielder is Torres-he would have been the difference IMO, McKenny and Adams will rarely combine creatively in the attack, why is Yedlin playing still, Aariola? We didn't threaten enough on the wings and had no real hold-up forward to combine with inside. The only quality LBthat can be dangerous is Vines and he's not there. How we incorporate Reyna and our injured right back in this run up to Qatar and all the other experimenting I guess will be answered through the system. Another thing, we don't have much in the way of natural-confident strikers of the ball. Is there any real goal striking in any of these sessions. Is anybody getting in anyones ass during training about scoring. 

  23. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 3:49 a.m.

      Wooden,
    Sargent and Brooks were put in the GB coffin of dead players to him. We will not see them again under his tenure....that is my feeling on this one.  Horvath seems to be one step away from not being on the roster.  He is the one keeper without MLS history, especially with GB.  I agree that we should have seen Luca...I would like to have seen Tillman as well.  We could have left on Weah and CP and then brought in Aaronson.  Second half should have been Tillman, Luca and Adams.  Would have greatly helped out the offense.  Based onhow we see GB using the #9, it makes no sense for Sargent to not be in the mix.  He is using more of a false #9.  Now that Sargent played so much winger at Norwich, this only adds to the confusion of why he is not here as he bring more interchangability.  Craziness.  

  24. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 6:52 a.m.

    Yes John; Players NOT here, that give you Positional Versitality would be Hoppe, Sargent, Sands

  25. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 8:56 a.m.

      Santi, I concur that Hoppe should be in the mix. He is left footed to play wing on the right side would be very benificial to mix up going to the endline or cutting back inside to shoot or pass.  Sands I think is another good athletic CB.

  26. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:17 a.m.

    Sands can also play in the Midfield, as he does for Rangers(when he gets Off the Bench)

  27. Bob Ashpole, June 6, 2022 at 3:10 a.m.

    Some good minutes for McKennie. He looked about 50% effectiveness.

    GB has done everything for Ferriera except run onto the field and finish for him. GB says he is selecting based on form, but keeps starting Ferriera. At the least he should be alternating who starts. Ferriera is doing all the little things you like to see from CFs in addition to job number one: scoring goals. All the extras mean nothing if the CF is not scoring goals.

    WS says we don't have any confident strikers of the ball. I think Weah is a strong finisher, and I still would like to see him at CF. Reyna and Aaronson can both succeed at Right Wing, so why not give Weah a try at CF.

    At halftime I was thinking WOW we are seeing an improved game plan. Pulisic is staying wide and not crowding the center channel. I was thinking that I would have to complement the coaching. Then in the second half the game plan reverts to the poor plan used in the last match. Sigh. No change. Apparently GB thinks it is okay to have non-attacking fullbacks in a 433 system with 3 CMs. I don't think he appreciates how to win the battle on the flanks. The FB and the winger have to play as a unit and a good flank attack is the best flank defense. 

  28. Bob Ashpole replied, June 6, 2022 at 3:12 a.m.

    And then there is the Sergent puzzle. Or rather he is a missing piece and the puzzle is why is he missing?

  29. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 4:13 a.m.

      Hey Bob, 
    I think Weah could do CF as well. His hold up play can't be any worse and he would be an over the top threat that we seem to default to in games.  GB should have started Wright to see what he could do....was slim pickings for the CF in the second half.  I think Scally played fine with trying to build up play as he controlled and made forward passes that A. Rob just can't make.  So in offense we were a 4-2-3-1 and then defensively went to a 4-3-3. However fullbacks were well forward and the quick switch of field caught us several times or when they played behind the full back who was forward. Our offense reverted to old US tactics of long ball in the second half so we did not get to see any real build up.  Once you put Arriola it was a done deal to being able to build up on the right side.  Yes the second half was very tough to watch.  Sargent is done with the national team under GB in my opinion, but I agree with you 100% he is a key missing piece and I think would score with this group of players.

  30. Philip Carragher replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:22 a.m.

    Weah should definitely be developed at CF. His lateral movements demonstrated against Morocco surprised me and he has good power with his right foot. He seems to be able to separate from defenders quickly and the small openings created by a quick first step are what's needed to get off shots in tight spaces. He is so quick to separate, defenders will overcompensate and leave themselves open to W shooting between their legs, deadly against good goalkeeping. Not hard to learn. His first touch seems to have improved considerably. I don't know about his left foot, but maybe he and Pulisic could get some private lessons about using their left foot especially to shoot. Get someone to teach them who at least knows that whatever limitation they have in their head about developing a great left foot should dissipate when they understand that their great right foot is now their plant foot, and the plant foot, leg, and knee bend drives the entire system. (Pulisic's body seems to address left footed shots pretty much the same way, same symmetry, every time. Variance is important.) Weah should also be taught how to turn and shoot. With his back to goal, quick first touch to the side and even away from goal, long step, good plant, twist and shoot. Both feet. Deadly. Surprises goalies. Also, wander around the box and outside of it with his back to goal so that he can visualize using field cues where the posts are and use those as targets when turning and shooting and shooting in general. Hire Benzema. He knows this stuff.

  31. Wooden Ships replied, June 6, 2022 at 10:16 a.m.

    Phillip, great stuff on the nature of the striker and finishing. And, and, it takes very little time to develop these techniques. The confidence and rhythm-balance starts with a ball and a wall, when leaving to use a different plant foot. Receiving the ball, laterally to your man marker, then timing the big step away and pulling the ball with your trail leg and presto your facing your defender in the scoring area. He will commit and you go to his unbalanced side. That is another way to get separation. There are others, but Benzema is a good example of creating the space for sure. 

  32. Sam Bellin replied, June 6, 2022 at 8:24 p.m.

    Good comments Bob, especially regarding our lack of flank attack, but isn't this more of a personnel than a coaching issue, at least yesterday?  To my eyes, without Dest we simply don't have a single outside back who can bring anything positive going forward, and are in fact way more likely to leave their side totally exposed when they try to move up.  Yedlin looked better going forward than Cannon or Scally, but his defensive play is still just too inconsistent to really trust him.  As for Scally, I know he's young and has had some good games in the Bundesliga (or so I've been told), but the eye test says that he was really bad yesterday -- truthfully unable to even hold his own most of the game.  I'm not trying to write him off but I think he (and Ferreira btw) are at least a year or two away.
    So to play this 4-3-3 right we just have to have Dest healthy and firing, and probably A Rob on the left despite his shortcomings that are regularly pointed out here.  Or maybe a radical move like Tyler Adams to outside back?  Don't want to do that but you're right Bob our lack of offense from the outside backs is really limiting our overall game.

  33. Bob Ashpole replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:42 p.m.

    Sam, you hit on what puzzles me. GB sends A Rob forward constantly, when A Rob contributes nothing positive to the attack. So why not send the other FBs forward occasionally too to see what happens. The bar is set very low.

    One of the attacking principles in my mind is that you cannot simply do the same thing everytime even if that one thing is how you score the most goals. You have to attack on both flanks and in the center also to keep the defense honest. Attacking down these other avenues is what makes your most successful avenue work. At the lowest level of play teams have their strongest attacking flank players on the right and the strongest defensive players on the left. That is house league stuff. With elite teams you expect them to have players with a good left foot so play should not be so predictable. But the way GB is coaching, opponents can use who is the fullback to cue their attack. Not good.

  34. John Sabala replied, June 7, 2022 at 3:19 a.m.

      Sam and Bob,
    You just stated what I have been bringing up time and again about how to put our best team on the pitch.  Our lack of real talented FBs just emphasizes my point.  We lack that depth, and despite Scally not having his best game defensively he held his own and combined play much more than A. Rob does day in and day out and will only get better.  I don't see the same improvement with A. Rob in his game.  That being said, the best option is to go with a 3 back and use Wingbacks.  This would allow us to put better on the ball players who can get foward in the attack and not have quite the same worries on defense.  This opens up new options for us, but GB will not make this wholistic change to his thinking set.  To me this is the best option going forward for us to get Ws in the WC.  It allows us to press and puts more talent on the field.  

          CP      Weah     Aaronson                           Subs - Reyna, Sargent, Wright
     
    Scally   Adams    McKennie/Luca   Dest             Subs - McKennie/Luca, Tillman, Busio, A. Rob, 
                                                                                   Yedlin, Vines, Cannon, Acosta
       EPB      Zimm/CV    Richards                         Subs - Brooks, Zimm/CV, Sands

                     Horvath                                         Subs - Turner, Steffan

  35. Santiago 1314 replied, June 9, 2022 at 6:57 a.m.

    It's Not a Bad Line-Up Bala;
    BUT,,, We can't find 2 CBs, Much Less 3
    Reyna, if Healthy, MUST Start... Who sits, so he can Start.???
    Cannon is Not a Wing Back... He would be a CB in your Threesome(for Sands)
    NO Musah.??? Even as a Sub.???
    Jedi is better than Scally, ESPECIALLY as a Wing Back.
    My Current Line-Up:
    CP.                        Weah
                 Reyna
         Aaronson  
                      Musah
              McKenNIE
    Jedi.                       Dest
           Richards. Adams
              *Horvath* 

  36. John Sabala, June 6, 2022 at 3:24 a.m.

      Defense Exposed Again 

    Goal Keeping - Can't complain too much about Johnson's play.  Made key saves when needed, and mostly made good decisions with the ball.  Again as with many other comments...it should have been Horvath in goal.  GB's copout phrase..."I will go with the guy that is playing minutes and well for his club."  This is talking out of both sides of his neck as he Steffan all these times without minutes in matches. 

    CBs - Long just should not have been in this match again.  Should have played Carter-Vickers with Palmer-Brown just to get a look at another pairing.  Zimmerman played well and his passing was solid for this match.  GB has obviously picked him already, so play the other CBs for a full match.

    FBs - Yedlin had a good match, though Uruguay gave him a lot of room so not too much pressure.  So can't complain too much.  Scally, despite making some poor decisions at times with attacking players in their own half that led to breakouts.  Can't fauly him too much as he is trying to prevent the counter attack from happening...chose poor angles, but never gave up on plays....however, he showed his skills on the ball, passing and moving in space is far better than A.Robinson just sprinting down the flank.  He is a must start in front of A. Robinson and can play both sides so should be on the team to Qatar.

    Midfield - Pulisic had to come too deep because Ferreira cannot do hold up play on the ball. His header chance should have at least forced a save, but should have been in the back of the net.  Pulisic and Aaronson did a better job of combining with Morroco.  Bottom line there was no real build up and we resorted to our old ways of long balls over the top.  Musah played well as a second holding midfielder. My biggest complaint with this match is guys occupying the same space a lot of times.  Kills the flow of the game.  Adams was not up to scratch as he turned the ball over in key moments.  I did like when he pushed forward to create threats.  We should have seen Tillman again and Luca at halftime.  Could have moved CP out to winder with Aaronson. Better scoring threats than just Arriola.

    Forwards - By the time Wright got on the pitch there was not flow to the offense.  Hence he faced the same thing Sargent did his whole time with the national team....no freaking service. Lone man on top of the 4-2-3-1. Once A. Rob came in no chance to build up play down the left. Just had those couple of sprints downt the flank.  Ferriera again showed he does not have the pedigree for this level of play.  

  37. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 3:24 a.m.

    Overall US lucky to get out with a draw.  Uruguay missed some ones they should have buried, but that is soccer.  Just a shame the rest of our opponents will not offer an competition to prepare for the World Cup.  GB is not going to fix our backline problems and our luck will run out when we least expect it.  

  38. Christopher Osmond, June 6, 2022 at 8:58 a.m.

    Agree!  Our tactical dribbling (dribbling to make passing room, draw defenders out of there block, and keep possession of ball when under high press) needs to improve.

    I wish LDLT got some more minutes in midfield but happy we got another look at BA in midfield.  When healthy again, we need to have a look at GR in the "8" position as well and not wing.  We need to increase creativity in the midfield to improve our game control and break down defenses of world class opponents.

  39. humble 1, June 6, 2022 at 12:27 p.m.

    In NOTABLE I would have added that the Uruguay coach made like 6 changes from the 3-0 victory against Mexicao and outright said this would a game where chances were given.  Neither of Pellistri or Cavani, the dynamic duo that destroyed Mexico in what was home game for Mexicon in Glendale, AZ, started. Further, Uruguay played a totally different formation and style that in Mexico, or than in any of their WC Qualification games, - 3-in-back.  That said, I do not understand why DeAndre Yedlin never gets any love.  His shortcoming are the same as nearly all his teammates, exactly as Frank points out in his comments, reflective of the state of player development of our system, which is evolving, yet, he is the ONLY player of his generation to have an extended career abroad, six years in Premier League, one in Turkey, another first rate soccer nation.  The young man has displayed courage, endeavor and ability all the way, he did not scamper back to the MLS for a big paycheck, when he fell down the pecking order, he carrier on abroad.  He was not blessed with having been developed in Uruguay, so he has the faults all the American's have.  This is ok.  He brings a wealth of experience he really is the Sr. player.  Respect.  Same for Sean Johnson.  The man has paid his dues and he got a clean sheet.  He played out of his mind to take NYCFC to the MLS Cup last year, I think two playoff penalty wins along the way, and now when needed, he steps up.  He does not moan or whine, when called upon, he is there.  We need more like him and right now, he's my number one, he is actually playing and he is solid.  Respect.  I couldn't really watch the game from where I was, too many people and connection fell apart in 2nd half.  Not really a game that you cannot draw any conclusions from the outcome.  That would be foolish.  It all about what the coaches planned to test/try and how that went.  That you for the write up and to the astute commenters as well.   Good stuff.  

  40. humble 1 replied, June 6, 2022 at 12:30 p.m.

    Sorry 'bout my fat fingers.  I don't have time to do more than a scan to edit.  Back to work. Have a nice day.

  41. John Sabala replied, June 6, 2022 at 2:59 p.m.

      Hey Humble,
    I fat finger the keyboard all the time!! :) 

    Now, you support my statement about the player changes for Uruguay and we could not get it done.  That is a concern, but as always GBs tactical plans are not able to shift during the play of the match.  Uruguay did that by going to a 4-4-2 during the second half that caused us all kinds of fits.  For the record, I think Yedlin should be on the team for all the reasons you stated.  He is tough, and you know what you get from him in a match.  He can help to close out a match or play against Wales or Iran and give quality minutes.  His defending has been pretty solid and he is good at tracking back on runs when we turn the ball over.

    I was fine with Johnson's play.  It is just GB has nothing but double speak.  If you listen to him then S. Johnson should have been #1 for all of WC Qualifying?  He keeps Arriola, Roldan, Llegett when we should have younger players on the roster that are playing in better leagues.  These older guys have contributed, but as Santi states we need to be moving on and thinking long term.  No one in USSF is willing to admit MSL is a subpar league and until we stop trying to use MLS to showcase for the USMNT this will be a problem.  It does not help that the coach is inept and will stick with what he knows and is comfortable with regarding tactics and player selection.  

  42. humble 1 replied, June 7, 2022 at 2:16 p.m.

    John, I will say this, take a closer look at MLS.  Sean Johnson is making a case right now to be 1st keeper.  Walker Zimmerman is making a case, if not already locked to be starting CB.  This is a watershed for MLS, these two are pure MLS products.  The are competing for spots with players from abroad.  This is good for MLS.  The inception of MLS Next Pro, is a little heralded feature that finally make a bridge from Academy to 1st Team.  This is a key change.  Guys like Lodeiro in Seattle and soon Herrera in Houston, these guys that come to play and to build.  MLS is closing the gap - fast.  The quality of player that is coming in from abroad now is is younger and better.  Americans that break through, like Zimmerman and Johnson, they are playing at a higher level.  This is something not lost on the kid from Seattle that stayed, and is making a nice 7 figure income in his home town as a striker.  Jordan Morris.

  43. humble 1 replied, June 7, 2022 at 2:23 p.m.

    As fast as soccer is growing and evoving in the USA and as far as it has to go, you have to be looking at the frameworks in place.  My son has played 50 games in 2022, he is U16, 1-3rd of the games he played in HS 1 year up, another 3rd in Academy league, 2 years up and the final 3rd in semi-pro with U23s, he is 16. He is not in MLS Next or ECNL.  This was not possible even 2 years ago.  One of those leagues did not exist. MLS is evolving at a simlilar rate, look Charotte just came in this year, where in the world has national level D1 team came on board in the last year?  I give a lot of credit to the MLS folks and those in their Academy and to USL and ECNL.  Lotta folks working hard creating chances.  USA should feel good about how the played Uruguay.  I have heard first hand from Uruguayans, they were impressed.  Keep it going!

  44. Alan Blackledge, June 6, 2022 at 4:54 p.m.

    My only question...what's up with that ridiculous T-shirt GB was wearing? He's an ambassador for US Soccer and he's wearng a peach colored t-shirt??? Did the TV commentators talk about this pregame and I missed it? What the hell? 

  45. Santiago 1314 replied, June 6, 2022 at 9:55 p.m.

    Alan, he Looked like he Coaches... A Bum OFF the Street, that his Brother Dragged in to Coach THE US MENS NATIONAL TEAM.!!! Embarrassing, and Everyone Knows IT.!!!... Probably some sort of "Virtue Signaling"... Like the Orange Arm Bands, Locking Elbows and Kneeling during National Anthem... Pathetic, and another Reason Ggg SHOULD BE FIRED.!!!

  46. frank schoon replied, June 7, 2022 at 8:15 a.m.

    Santi, I will add to the rediculousness since I'm also from the old school, Locking elbows, making political statements, etc but you forgot also the touching of the hands with everybody sitting on the bench while walking by after being subbed, so rediculous...this touchie ,feelie BS....And ofcourse everybody before the game starts gets into rugby huddle or scrum. I have no idea what that is suppose to do?. The only reason I would go into huddle if someone noticed a nice looking chick seated at the midline telling everybody, "check out the blonde over there". Other than that lets get on with the game......

  47. Bob Ashpole replied, June 8, 2022 at 11:39 p.m.

    Frank, I am new school on this issue. I don't mind celebrities taking stands on social and political issues, but not on the field and not during training and matches. On this we agree.

  48. Santiago 1314 replied, June 9, 2022 at 7:08 a.m.

    I agree with you Bob.

  49. frank schoon replied, June 9, 2022 at 9:11 a.m.

    Bob, if a celebrity wants to make a fool of himself off the field that's his business. I find in today's culture we can't think for ourselves therefore we need a celebrity to help us out. A celebrity is good at what he does, and should stick to that and leave his other supposedly  all-knowing expertise to himself .Like you say, i'm not the conventional type, I do my own thing and I don't need some goofball in the entertainment world to help me out....

  50. R2 Dad, June 6, 2022 at 9:26 p.m.

    Mexican referee gets a 4--lots of CONCACAF non-calls evident that would not survive FIFA scrutiny in Qatar.

  51. Santiago 1314, June 7, 2022 at 6:20 a.m.

    I was pretty Pleased with this Rant; so decided to Re-Post it here also... Had trouble with the Copy/Paste... So, pulling a Frank Multi-Post to get it in:

    Wayne; I tend to Agree with Frank, about Non-Intelligent USA Players ..
    I only see a Few, with a Soccer Brain: Busio, LDLT, Dest, Ferreira....
    BUT, why would you want to Slow your Ferrari DOWN at the Grand Prix.???... So, you can finish 5th.???... Or "Go for Broke" and put the "Pedal to The Metal" and RUN Over the Competition And WIN IT ALL ???

  52. Santiago 1314 replied, June 7, 2022 at 6:22 a.m.

    It's "High Risk, High Reward" with this Particular Group of Young, Twitchy, Tenacious, Thoroughbreds.!!!
    Wind'em Up and Let Them Play.!!!... Ggg needs to Stop Trying to put a Bridle in their Mouth and Shackles on their Feet.!!!
    30 different Grids on the Field and each Player afraid to "Break" the Chains or "Buck the System", in FEAR they will be "CUT", as have others.!?!?!?

  53. Santiago 1314 replied, June 7, 2022 at 6:23 a.m.

    The Coach is Trying to IMPLEMENT a SYSTEM that ISN'T NECESSARY, IS COUNTER CULTURAL, and DIMINISHES THE NATURAL TALENTS OF HIS PLAYERS.!!!...WHY.???
    Because he Read it in a Coaching Manual Somewhere.???
    Because that's the way Pep does it.???
    Fire this Guy and Bring in a Coach like Peter Vermes, and you will see the Team Really Blossom and Make us Proud.!!!

  54. Santiago 1314 replied, June 7, 2022 at 6:24 a.m.

    Not this Sputtering; 1 Step Forward, 1 Step Sideways, 2 Steps Back, 1 Step the other Sideways, 1 Step Forward ... Rinse, Lather, Repeat...
     
          ∆>
          XV
          < V
     
    You get It.???
    It's a Circle Jerk; ( In more ways than One.!!!)
    Everytime we seem to think Ggg has got it Figured Out, He finds a way to, "Let the Air, Out of The Balloon"
    He can't STAY OUT OF HIS OWN WAY.!!!
    He's Holding the Group back.... He's Gotta Go.!!!

  55. frank schoon replied, June 7, 2022 at 7:27 a.m.

    Santi, damn it!!! You gave away the  secrets of tactical planning that you learn at the USSF Coaching Academy.....

  56. frank schoon replied, June 7, 2022 at 8:03 a.m.

    Santi,"Wayne"???, WTF ,. I'm trying to figure out where this poster Wanye is...couldn't find him and I almost gave up looking for him until I found him as the original poster of this first article. LOL. I hope he heard you from that distance...

  57. Santiago 1314 replied, June 8, 2022 at 12:49 a.m.

    Frank, I am a Product of my USSF Environment... But, my "A" License was Hard Won, as I didn't Fit Their Mold and they Tried to stop me...
    (Maybe SA Staff can Link their Old Article on what USSF tried to do to Cubillas, I had a Similar experience)
    But, In the End, Quality rose to the Top .. IMHO ( hahaha)
    I think there is TOO Much OVER Coaching going on Nowadays...
    TOO much "Beep Bra"... Analytics
    K.I.S.S... Keep IT Simple Stupid
    Highly Unlikely that this Current Crop of USMNT is going to Develop into a PEP Tiki-Taka Team... 
    Why try to Force a Square Peg, into a Round Hole.???
    These "Kids" REALLY Think they Can Play...Why Try to Beat That Out of Them.???... Wind'em UP and Let them Compete... 1v1.. or GegenPressing, because our chance of Building up a Holland '74 14 pass Goal are Slim and None.!!!

  58. frank schoon replied, June 8, 2022 at 8:03 a.m.

    Santi, some sh*t you had to go through to get the A-license. I hope you got some hot dates out of that. I can only imagine how long I would have lasted in that circus environment, one day maybe...
    I just couldn't put up with this BS, listening to instructors who couldn't take on a lamppost. Along with the classroom garbage... In Holland, one of the greatest wingers to have ever played Coen Moulyn, stated why left the KNVB coaching school when he decided to go for a coaching license. He  stated, the classroom instructor ,who played amateur ball for pizza hut united, was telling him Coen, who just won the World Cup for teams, now the Toyota Cup, beating Estudiantes, how he should kick a corner.  This is why a lot of 'greats' in Holland stop going to the KNVB to get a coaching license.....And this is why, I can't these classroom idiots serious. I can understand how Cubillas felt, who at that time was the 3rd leading world cup goal scorer behind Pele.

    I still have that article that Paul Gardner wrote about this fiasco of what happen to Cubillas, somewhere. It was written so well and so funny....I wish SA would reprint it again, for that was best one ever written by Paul....

    I can't believe they to get rid of you over at the USSF, that's amazing... I think these classroom instructurs feel intimidated when there is someone more experienced,which isn't hard, to be in the classroom....

  59. Bob Ashpole replied, June 8, 2022 at 11:55 p.m.

    Santi, don't think of positional play as being an all or nothing thing. It is really just about playing smarter. Jill Ellis was really good at taking pieces of positional play and using the pieces to selectively improve the overall style of play.

    An example that you may have used for years and not considered it positional play: Pressing high to control the middle third and staying compact to reduce the gaps between lines. 

    What I find fault with GB is that a system of play is supposed to be a tool to enable the team to combine and play better. If the coach is pushing a system that doesn't make the team play better, he has misunderstood his role. I first had high hopes for GB, but in short order saw that he was not the coach to raise the MNT's level of play. Big disappointment. 3 years later and we are still stuck with looking backwards to 2002. Worst we now have people in charge of the WNT who are clueless as to what Jill Ellis was doing, even though most of them watched her teams win 2 world cups.

  60. Santiago 1314 replied, June 9, 2022 at 9:38 p.m.

    Bob, I knew you would eventually come around to "The Dark Side"..  "I am Your Father" ... jajaja ...
    This Term "Positional Play" is a Smoke Screen for the FAILURE OF TIKI-TAKA to Succeed Outside the Confines of the Catalan Club of Farcálona... And the Only Reason it Succeeded there was Because of Xavi(The Player)... Having Messi and Iniesta didn't Hurt.!!!
    It's Similar to the way they Changed "Global Warming" into "Climate Change" when the Facts didn't match the Rhetoric...

  61. Philip Carragher, June 7, 2022 at 8:42 a.m.

    I'm glad people are still commenting here because I have a question. The last two friendlies, both of our opponents visibly dialed-down their pressure on the ball at specific times. Against Morocco, it was just after the 30th minute. Against Uruguay, it was around the 16th minute. They stopped trying to tackle the ball away from U.S. players and let us pass the ball around. Both times, we were able to string together passes and pressure their goal and even score (Weah's goal). What's up with this? Is this normal behavior in a friendly? I'd be ok just leaving it be but I don't see or hear this stark change in the game and even the commentators ignore this and begin to talk about the U.S. beginning to dominate, how the momentum has changed.?? I'm all for giving credit when it's due but in these cases it wasn't and I don't think it helps us to improve.

  62. frank schoon replied, June 7, 2022 at 9:13 a.m.

    Philiip ,good question. Did read the comment about Fatique from the English coach, did you read the comments in Belgium and Dutch papers how Belgium was so bad that they didn't give the dutch a game. DeBruyne,stated he didn't give a damn about this Tournament, he just wanted to rest. And I can imagine how the rest of the Belgium players felt. These players came off a long season and to right away started again ,right after the season without a rest is too much...Also you that in after a  world cup tournament, many good players in Europe have problems getting back up to snuff for the season....

    Also to spare their energy, you note how Uruguay was so good at controlling the ball and pass it around, and don't forget 6 of their that played against Mexico didn't play, should say enough too.
    Liked we talked about how the Moroccans and Uruguay played their keep away game making us go after the ball which we can't do, and being a friendly should say enough....

  63. Philip Carragher replied, June 7, 2022 at 10:45 a.m.

    Thanks Frank. Your insights are helpful.  Mike's ratings here make sense based on the game and the aforementioned decrease in pressure on the ball. I just hope we don't come away thinking we played better than we did. Bad assessments lead to bad outcomes. Here's another question: I too believe Pulisic is trying to do too much and it makes him less effective than he could be. (He also doesn't look happy.) Is there a player(s) who can play well the way Pulisic is trying to play? DeBruyne? Lampard? Frenkie De Jong (what a treat to watch him play!).

  64. frank schoon replied, June 7, 2022 at 11:23 a.m.

    Philip, Frenkie de Jong might be going to ManUtd....The Ajax coach is now at ManUtd...so who knows. What I like about Frenkie is that he won't try to beat 1v1 but try avoid the opponent by dribbling away and hopefully another opponent help out on getting to him ,then he passes....He's so good at that....

    I think if Uruaguay played the US before Mexicol this might have been a tough game for the US.
    I wish we could hire, Valderama, Pirlo, Kroos, and other retired greats of midfield to come over here and help our boys learn the better qualities. Luca is learning as you can playing in Holland but we need to seriously start a beachhead for our better player by bringing in greats to show and teach, the real insights of the game, for we're not going to get here from our coaches...We simply lack the expertise

  65. humble 1 replied, June 9, 2022 at 12:15 p.m.

    Interesting all the hits GB takes here.  For me, he is not perfect, but the team, his staff and the folks in the back office of USSF and yeah even MLS, are doing a better job.  He got us to the World Cup.  Klinsmann, the star from Germany, failed in 2017.  Even I, who did not watch soccer before 2010 could see his ship sinking, and then Arena was not good enough to fix it.  GB, not only got us to the WC, he also got us a decent haul of silverware in the process.  All the while taking the tomatoes and eggs from the peanut gallery.  I know first hand, Uruguay was impressed with USA.  It was not easy for them.  Yeah they rotated, but they rotated in quality.  This game was totally different from Mexico. Mexico was the big simulation with what could be their first team.  Mexico gives a better context than USA in USA. 63,000 screaming fans in Arizona compare to 19,000 out of 23,000 in Cincinatti and a healthy portion of those for Morocco.  Now GB cannot do anything about the fan attendance, that's not his job.  I do rate the guy and his staff.  I have no USSF credential, I am not a coach, and don't play one in a movie, but you can over analyze.  He got us to the WC.  Next is beat Wales, England and Iran and get us out of the group.  Make it happen!

  66. Santiago 1314 replied, June 9, 2022 at 9:53 p.m.

    ONWARD THRU THE FOG, Humble.!!!...
    You are aware of the New CBA and the Fact that Player Compensation is "BONUSED" upon ATTENDANCE.!!!
    So, if I've got a Coach, that Doesn't play the Best Players, and Doesn't play a Style of Soccer that brings Fans IN,
    Then HOUSTON, We've got a Problem.!!! ... Pretty soon the Inmates are going to be Running the Asylum, Like they are in the NWSL... 
    Ggg "Backed" us into The World Cup.. Making Critical Mistakes that ALMOST cost us Direct Qualification.
    He's Reached his "Peter Principle" Level and is HOLDING THIS TALENTED GROUP BACK, And Costing the Players and USSF Money.!$!$!$

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