>Wednesday Lunch Special: MIXing it up with the Red, White, and TEAL

Posted: November 17, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

>By Evan Ream
 
…But seriously, this article is mostly going to be about Juan Agudelo, I just wanted to include those puns as well as this picture courtesy of The Offside Rules.

 
Here is what I liked about the game today:
Juan Agudelo scored on his international debut. The goal was well taken and incredibly composed for a 17 year old (who in scoring became the youngest scorer for USA ever). Agudelo took a nice ball from Mikkel “Mix” Diskerud and his beautiful USA jersey. Even if he didn’t get the goal, I was still going to be impressed by his play. Agudelo just looks like he knows what he’s doing; his first touch is excellent despite his age. The thing that I like most about him though is that when he is dribbling: He looks like he just glides with the ball. It’s an effortless motion that I haven’t EVER seen from a USMNT player. Here is his goal today as well as his sick assist against San Jose in the playoffs.

Mikkel Diskerud was also impressive in limited minutes. He didn’t do much besides the assist on the goal, but I was very impressed with his assist. I have never seen an American player flick the ball up to himself in the penalty area in order to get a better cross. The reason why I’m so excited for these two players is because they are doing things right now at their young age that even Landon Donovan and Clint Dempsey aren’t doing.
 
Tim Ream had a very solid debut, playing most of the game while pretty much not doing anything wrong. We didn’t get to see much of his great distribution skills today, but being just “solid” is excellent for a defender in their first game.
 
Eric Lichaj was impressive and not at the same time. He was an attacking threat the whole game and he shut down South Africa’s left side, but he still showed that he’s not ready to take over for Steve Cherundolo just yet. Lichaj was called for, by my count, five fouls in the game. If he wants to play at a high level internationally as well as for Aston Villa, he needs to cut down on his fouls.
 
Clarence Goodson needs to be starting for USA. I think the best possible back line that we have right now would be Carlos Bocanegra, Clarence Goodson, Oguchi Onyewu, and Steve Cherundolo. I loved Goodson’s classy cut move that set up an early free kick in the game.
 
This is Eddie Gaven. This is a Sloth. Anyone else see the resemblance? All joking aside, the SLOTH was tireless tonight, doing a lot of the dirty look. At the very least, he deserves more call-ups.
 
Lastly Teal Bunbury was solid if unspectacular in his debut. I’m not sure if he will ever be a first choice player for USA, but as the intern said it “even if he doesn’t play for USA, at least he will never play for Canada.” I couldn’t have said it better myself.
 
What I didn’t like about the game:
Brian Carroll and Logan Pause were pretty bad in the game. If you noticed that USA had pretty much no possession, it was because our central midfield was terrible. How was Kyle Beckerman not called up for this game?
 
Jonathan Bornstein does not look like he has improved his game at all in the last year.
 
Jonathan Spector is in terrible form and in all likelihood just got his spot as back up right back taken by Eric Lichaj.
 
In all, it was a solid performance with definitely more positives than negatives. Many of these young players will be fighting for CONCACAF Gold Cup spots next year. I think we learned a lot today about the type of young players that are up and coming throughout the US ranks and at the very least, they will push the veterans for spots come next year. Join me tomorrow for my FC Dallas preview.

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