Sunday, April 6, 2008

Hope you made it to your seats in time

I did. But not by much.

Overall, a great game from United. I don't understand why so many of the Insiders are complaining that this game didn't inspire confidence against a weak opponent. 4-1 is a good result, and its really poor karma to be upset that the game wasn't 6-0.


1. Clyde Simms - He was my man of the match. Just puts himself in great positions to win the ball. If "steals" was a stat category in soccer like it is in basketball, Simms would probably lead the league. Had a few dangerous shots too. I like how he keeps the ball low on those shots from distance. There are other players who send the ball into the box seats in those situations (cough Cunningham cough). Simms will score some goals this year.

2. Luciano Emilio - Clinical finishing on the first goal in the second minute. Actually if you think about it, Emilio was just inches away from 3 or 4 goals. He had the great shot from 20 yards out that hit the underside of the crossbar, leading to Quaranta's goal. Another shot later in the half that was barely saved. And then put the ball in the net after being called offside in the second half. I thought he was in line with the ball when Fred played it across the box, and I didn't see a good replay, but even if he was off it could have only been by a couple inches.

3. Santino Quaranta - Perfectly placed shot to get his goal, and totally cool of Tino to celebrate in front of the Barra. (D- Is all forgiven yet?) But I was most impressed with Quaranta's work rate, playing the full 90. That's certainly something we've yet to see from Niell. Also a good point from Edgell on how Quaranta makes Emilio's game stronger.

4. Zach Wells - Made a lot of great saves last night, and distribution looked much better. Although I really could have used the extra 20 points that a Clean Sheet would have earned in fantasy MLS. I missed the lead-up to the Edu goal so I can't comment on it.

5. Gonzalo Peralta - He isn't getting much love from the Insiders. But keep in mind that Peralta's job last night was to keep Danny Dichio out of the play, even including risking a red card by taking him down the one time where he may have been through on goal. Well Dichio didn't have one shot on goal, so Peralta did his job well.


1. Jaime Moreno - Fullback describes it best, but I thought it was hilarious when Moreno took the ball away from Niell in the box as if to say "What are you doing? THIS is how you finish!" Moreno did look slow though, and is certainly not 100%. But now I'm a little bit less worried about whether he will be fit enough to start against Pachuca since Quaranta is looking good.

2. Gonzalo Martinez - Quite a few scary opportunities, including one very early in the match when a cross was sent in and you saw Namoff going up for it along with two TFC players, and then yelling at Martinez afterwards. One of those guys was yours Chalo.


None! It feels great to write that.

A few other remarks... Was that a 3-5-2 or a 3-4-3 in the second half? Definitely an interesting choice by Soehn to switch to a more attacking formation when up 2-0, but with Toronto's ineffective offense, why not? If you missed the game, most of the second half looked something like this:
---------Wells-----------
Namoff-Peralta-Martinez
---------Simms----------
McTavish-Dyachenko-Fred
----Moreno-Quaranta-----
--------Emilio-------------

Whatever it was, I guess it worked, as we scored 2 more goals. But I almost wonder if having only 3 in the back led to Edu's goal.

Anyway, great atmosphere at RFK, and a nice relief that the rain held off. Also, love the selection in the new DC United store. Check back later for pictures from section 312.

1 comment:

Fullback said...

I think the TFC goal was more a case of Fred not being a wingback . . .

I wasn't sure about the formation shift at first either as it looked like both Quaranta and Fred were playing left midfield as the second half opened. Whatever the case, it was definitely three at the back, Fred and McTavish wide, Emilio high, and the rest being sort of fluid.

Simms dropped deepest in the midfield, but he made some surging runs as well, and I really liked seeing that. He's getting some real confidence, and I think that Gallardo playing deeper is allowing him to make those charges upfield, which, combined with the tease that he might hit one from distance, is yet another avenue of attack.