27 March 2005
Thoughts on Mexico - US
Thanks be to Tivo. I missed the game due to Easter dinner with my family, but came home and was able to watch it. Fortunately everyone kept me in the dark on the result. Skipping halftime meant I'm only up an hour too late. It was certainly a gripping game, with a lot of action, but unfortunately the result wasn't kind to the US.
A few quick thoughts:
A few quick thoughts:
- I was disappointed in the US in the first half. Both goals resulted from poor defending; when you see two goals come that quickly, it usually results from mental errors and this was no exception. In general the team seemed somewhat dispirited. I don't know if that was from the physical or mental effects of playing in Mexico City, but either way it wasn't good.
- I'm not sure that the 4-2-3-1 formation used by the US did them any advantage, particularly against the aggressive 3-4-3 used by Mexico. In particular Mexico had absolutely no trouble bringing the ball up to the last third all day. We spent all day defending inside the 18, and that's bound to result in some goals.
- This was my first look at Oguchi Onyewu. He certainly showed some skill, and I think he's got some promise. But an unfortunate bout of ballwatching led to the first Mexico goal; he completely lost track of Borgetti who had a clear look at both the ball and the goal. The good news is that's a teachable moment. I look forward to see what he can do in his next caps.
- The second half was much better for the US. At least they were able to pressure the goal. The goal came from some nice ball movement and a fine shot by Eddie Lewis. In general the US were able to bring more pressure, but it came at the expense of additional return pressure from Mexico. As in the first half, Mexico had no trouble advancing the ball to the edge of the box, and the US needed some desperate defense, great goalkeeping from Keller, and a bit of luck to avoid giving up another goal. But that was the price we had to pay to chase the 2-goal deficit.
- I'm going to have to work on my Tivo fu. Don't know if the game started late or what, but the recording ended with about 30sec left in stoppage time. Must improve before we reach knockout games, that might have extra time added on.