On a day that can be considered the official start to the 2008 US Soccer season, I've been trying to brainstorm a new player rating system to use in postgame reviews. Numbers and letter grades just seem so trite. So instead we'll use a more original player rating system that is based on something with which I'm proud to have quite a bit of experience: liquor.
1. Freddy Adu - The only viable attacking option for the US in this game. In general, we dominated play in the first 30 minutes, but could only score one goal, and that was Freddy's.
2. Dax McCarty - Played well in occupying the Benny Feilhaber role. Of course we're still not sure why Feilhaber isn't occupying the Feilhaber role... I saw McCarty take three balls to the face in this game, a feat normally performed only by members of the Village People.
3. Kamani Hill - The Cuba goal and essentially all of their scoring opportunities came on the left side. Hill did his job to shut down the right.
1. Charlie Davies - If it wasn't for a couple good runs, Davies could have easily found himself in the lower category. Way too easy to go down, Davies could be the heir apparent to my biggest complaint against Eddie Johnson.
2. Peter Nowak - Some questionable choices in his lineup. Again, Feilhaber's name comes up. Also surprised not to see Robbie Rogers on this roster. No, two Terps is not enough.
1. Nathan Sturgis - Was he actually on the field? Or did they just write his name on the lineup sheet by mistake? I swear, I only counted 3 times that Sturgis's name was mentioned in this match. Plus he was in no-man's-land on the goal.
2. Robbie Findley - Tons of wasted opportunity and wasted talent. Not yet ready for primetime.
So in general, the problem was 3 breakaway opportunities that we could not convert. Altidore and Findley shot straight at the keeper. Davies doesn't like to shoot, so he decided to fall down instead. If we had 4 Freddy Adus playing in the top 4 positions, then we would have won 4-1. But until we can invent a device to make that happen, someone else is going to have to step up.