OK, I’m really making an effort to at least minimally comment on every game. Really.

So here are my minimalist takeaways from our last game. A game we got our first win 1-0 over the Houston Dynamo.

  • Gomez is still only worth about 20mins per game. If he doesn’t score or assist in those 20mins, he might as well not have played.
  • Fred subbed in and looked lively. Good. Does he immediately go into a starting role, or come off the bench once more?
  • Jakovic is CLEARLY not used to being pressured relentlessly and without reason. I’ve often said it when I used to coach… sometimes you have to chase the ball around like an ADHD kid. It puts the defenders “off” and will hurry their passes upfield creating turnovers. You can’t do it all the time because a good team will fill into the holes you create by running ’round like a ‘tard. Clearly DC isn’t a good team and this tactic works very well against us. Especially Jakovic who tries to play out of the back with nice controlled passes. Chicago burned us several times last week and Houston again this week. Real Salt Lake would be stupid not to do the same in this weekend’s game.
  • Why is it that Soehn can’t just make a plain 1-for-1 sub? Fred comes in for Gomez, but instead of using Fred in Gomez’ central playmaking role, he moves him outside and Pontius (rookie) inside. Why? How about letting the rookie get used to one spot. He’s played forward, winger, and central midfield and it’s only the third game of the season…
  • Louis Crayton is 100 times better than Josh Wicks. I don’t care what anyone else says. I feel completely at ease when Crayton goes up for a ball, whereas with Wicks I get a mild panic attack.
  • On a related note… If the coaches rate Wicks as better than Kocic (since they started Wicks over Kocic when Crayton was hurt), then why is Kocic on the bench and not Wicks as Crayton’s backup?
  • Overall, I’m liking the defense.
  • Overall, the center of the midfield doesn’t have the wheels to compete for 90mins. Between Gomez and Olsen we’re losing too many 50/50 opportunities.
  • N’Silu looks like a very good option. Good size, skill, and speed. Hes quite raw, but looks promising.

Now for Jaime Moreno’s red card. If there was ever one play, one single moment that told me where Jaime’s fitness level is at, this was it. I know because I’ve been there. He lost possession of a ball where if he was at 100% he would never have lost it. He chased because he’s supposed to (and I, for one, applaud the effort) but was just late in the tackle. It’s a tackle of desperation and frustration. You know you aren’t going to catch him, but you *should* have been able to catch him. So you lunge thinking, maybe, just maybe you’ll get it. But halfway through you know you wont, and you swing through anyway. Could the ref have given him a yellow? Sure. But a red is entirely justifiable here too.

So now he’s out this week against Real Salt Lake. Hopefully he’ll be back and in better fitness in two weeks. In the meantime, I’d like to see Pontius start up top with Emelio again. That’s only if Fred is ready to take over the right wing position, and I’m not sure he’s fully fit. My second choice would be N’Silu with Emelio again, and let Pontius keep the right wing for another week.

The DCenter’s take on the match.

Photo gallery from Behind the Badge.

Official post game quotes.

United Mania’s take.