From: Winston Smith, American Patriot on 19 Jun 2010 02:02
In a warm up game with Turkey a couple of weeks before the first Group
C match, the USA was down 0-1 before it finished by winning 2-1.
In the England match, they were down 0-1 before the draw.
In the Slovenia match, they were down 0-2 before making an adjustment
at the half.
Anyone see a disturbing pattern here?
Perhaps some teams get notable from creating always-coming-from-behind
victories. Can anyone name such a team from the past? The kind of
team that is slow to warm up, but once they get hot, get out of their
way...anyone know of such a team?
If you can't name such a team, there's probably a reason why. And
that is because this is a game where you better be warm on the attack
within the first 5 min.
It would be instructive if a team adopted a pattern like 4-4-3 (F-M-D)
or even a 5-4-2 for ONLY the first 5, maybe 10 min of a match in order
to drive up the probability of getting the first goal. That might
even include having the roster filled with only strikers (not moving
midfielders forward and risk damaging their psychology), and then
making subs after the 1st goal or after the 5 or 10 min.
Yes, it would leave their defense rather porous for the initial
several minutes, but you balance the idea of giving all energy to
getting a goal against a more conservative establishment of the
defense and then let the offense get warmed up well after.
From: Winston Smith, American Patriot on 19 Jun 2010 02:24
Another detailed analysis of match play:
From: Winston Smith, American Patriot on 19 Jun 2010 03:04
The text written below is by one Georgina Turner. I don't know who
she is, but her analysis (and a photo of her showing a simple beauty)
puts her on the list of babes I would like to sleep with.
Story of the day
Last weekend the New York Post's headline -- "USA wins 1-1" --
captured the zeitgeist perfectly: forget the finer mechanics of soccer
scoring, rarely can a tie have felt so good. Today the tie with
Slovenia was arrived at via a nine-times-out-of-10 moment that went
against the U.S., which means the headlines are likely to be a little
more sober. But this was another fightback performance to galvanize
the American camp nonetheless.
At half time, Bob Bradley's team looked dead and buried. Slovenia had
outclassed his men in almost every position, scoring a firecracker of
a first goal through Valter Birsa before adding a cooler second
through Zlatan Ljubijankic. It was evident that Jose Torres was out of
his depth against a fast-moving midfield, while Robbie Findley's pace
was doing little to trouble Miso Brecko. Both teams were transformed
from their first match outings; this was better news for the
But Bradley took the right decisions at the interval, and key players
such as Landon Donovan stepped up. Scoring so early in the second-half
gave the U.S. impetus and belief -- a brew that shouldn't be
underestimated in this kind of competition. The Slovenia of the first
half was only visible in fits and starts, while the U.S. drove forward
like a team convinced of its destiny. Michael Bradley's 82nd-minute
equaliser even allowed the cries of "USA! USA!" to be heard
momentarily above the drone of the vuvuzelas.
Maurice Edu's 86th-minute goal would have capped a quite remarkable
afternoon's work, but it wasn't to be. Before the ball was in the net,
referee Koman Coulibaly had blown his whistle, witnessing a foul by
Edu that even the replays have contrived to hide -- the only
infringements clearly visible are those being committed by Slovenian
But now is the wrong time to hold the inquest. Germany, too, will be
left to wonder how differently its meeting with Serbia might have
ended without the referee's erroneous intervention. England would love
the luxury of blaming the officials, but has only its own drab
performance to blame for a goalless draw with Algeria. We've spent the
past week moaning about how dull the World Cup is, and now all three
results today leave groups C and D wide open. I'm looking forward to
the game of musical tables that next week's simultaneous kickoffs
Player of the day
Inevitably, Donovan's name is everywhere this afternoon. And in the
second half, he took the game by the scruff of the neck and gave it a
good shake. But the U.S. team's second goalscorer, Michael Bradley,
was one of the few players who can take credit for his performance on
both sides of halftime. While those around him struggled to play their
own game with Slovenia dominating possession, Bradley's passing
settled instantly into a metronomic rhythm. In the absence of anything
like what we were expecting from Jose Torres, he also took
responsibility for pushing forward from midfield. His goal wasn't the
most complicated you'll ever see, but he was in the right place at the
Goat of the day
Given how frequently they find their way in here, perhaps we should
rename this section "Goalkeeping nightmare of the day." Donovan's goal
to start the U.S.'s comeback against Slovenia was hardly a craftless
clogger's punt, but Samir Handanovic ought to have done better with it
nonetheless. As Donovan pulls his foot back, the keeper closes his
eyes and braces himself for impact like soon-to-be-roadkill faced with
The German-Serbia post-mortem will focus on the referee's performance
and the first German penalty miss in normal play since 1974, which
means the life that Milos Krasic brought to the Serbian right wing
could go largely underappreciated. He was the main supply to center
forward Nikola Zigic, and German left back Holger Badstuber was in
danger of staining his reputation on several occasions.
One of the most pleasing aspects of the World Cup so far has been the
quality of the refereeing -- not perfect, but good enough to have only
become a talking point for the right reasons. So who saw today coming?
Refereeing Germany v Serbia, Alberto Undiano produced 10 cards, one of
which was red, in a game that had all the violence of a girl scouts'
cake sale. But even he was trumped by Coulibaly.
Goal of the day
Birsa's 13th-minute shot against the U.S. is one of the few (even that
might be overstating it) in this tournament to have come from the
outside of the area and look destined for the net from the instant it
left his boot. It was struck with such ferocity that Tim Howard barely
reacted before Slovenia started celebrating.
Deciding to keep faith with Findley didn't go down too well, but Bob
Bradley came out of today pretty well, trying Torres and reacting
quickly when it didn't work. Both U.S. goals were scored within a few
minutes of substitutions. Maybe not rocket science, but certainly more
proactive than anyone on the England bench. Fabio Capello refused to
abandon his uninspired 4-4-2 formation even with the clock winding
Quote of the day
"Nice to see your own fans booing you. Thanks for your support" -- a
scowling Wayne Rooney shouts into the camera as the crowd shows its
appreciation for England's performance against Algeria.
Stat of the day
0 -- the number of crosses played by England today that reached their
Arjen Robben (hamstring) looks likely to be fit enough to make the
bench for the Netherlands, while Denmark coach Morten Olsen is waiting
on the fitness of Jon Dahl Tomasson (hamstring), Simon Kjaer (knee),
Daniel Jensen (Achilles) and Nicklas Bendtner (not 100% but likely to
What to watch for tomorrow
Tomorrow's early kickoff is the Netherlands' meeting with Japan, who
will provide more energetic opposition than Denmark did a few days
ago. The Japanese have promised to "run the Dutch into the ground" and
interrupt the flow of balls from midfield to the Netherlands'
forwards. These teams met as recently as September, however, when the
Dutch won 3-0. Wesley Sneijder was central in that game, and though
his performance against the Danes was somewhat overrated, he's likely
to pull the strings again here.
There's an intriguing match up from Group D at 10 a.m. (ET), with
Australia taking on Ghana. Australia's performance against Germany was
poor, and lacked any attacking strength; things will be worse tomorrow
for the absence through suspension of Tim Cahill. Ghana will certainly
fancy its chances of a win, but with the group wide open it might be
reluctant to risk too much by bombing forwards at every opportunity.
The second set of matches has so far avoided too much cageyness,
however, so fingers crossed for another entertaining 90 minutes.
Cameroon and Denmark go into their second matches in varying degrees
of disarray, depending on the accuracy of reports. Apparently
disagreements amongst the Cameroon players have simmered down, but
senior players have now picked an argument with coach Paul le Guen,
insisting that he puts more experience on the pitch for this game.
That could see Alex Song start in place of Joel Matip. The Danes will
be encouraged by how poor Cameroon was against Japan, but have
problems of their own up front thanks to injuries.
From: Insane Ranter on 19 Jun 2010 03:30
On Jun 19, 2:02 am, "Winston Smith, American Patriot"
> It would be instructive if a team adopted a pattern like 4-4-3 (F-M-D)
> or even a 5-4-2 for ONLY the first 5, maybe 10 min of a match in order
> to drive up the probability of getting the first goal. That might
> even include having the roster filled with only strikers (not moving
> midfielders forward and risk damaging their psychology), and then
> making subs after the 1st goal or after the 5 or 10 min.
> Yes, it would leave their defense rather porous for the initial
> several minutes, but you balance the idea of giving all energy to
> getting a goal against a more conservative establishment of the
> defense and then let the offense get warmed up well after.
Just a nitpick or two. Normally it goes defense to forward. 4-4-2. D-M-
F. And 4-4-3 is 11 men. I think you meant one of the 4 in defense is
the GK but he is normally left out of the numbers.
I'd keep the starting back 4 and Howard. Donovan, Bradley, Demsey, and
Edu in mid. and Jozy and Buddle up top. But that is me.
From: Winston Smith, American Patriot on 19 Jun 2010 03:39
On Jun 19, 10:30 am, Insane Ranter <log...(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> On Jun 19, 2:02 am, "Winston Smith, American Patriot"
> <mavigoz...(a)yahoo.com> wrote:
> > It would be instructive if a team adopted a pattern like 4-4-3 (F-M-D)
> > or even a 5-4-2 for ONLY the first 5, maybe 10 min of a match in order
> > to drive up the probability of getting the first goal. That might
> > even include having the roster filled with only strikers (not moving
> > midfielders forward and risk damaging their psychology), and then
> > making subs after the 1st goal or after the 5 or 10 min.
> > Yes, it would leave their defense rather porous for the initial
> > several minutes, but you balance the idea of giving all energy to
> > getting a goal against a more conservative establishment of the
> > defense and then let the offense get warmed up well after.
> Just a nitpick or two. Normally it goes defense to forward. 4-4-2. D-M-
> F. And 4-4-3 is 11 men. I think you meant one of the 4 in defense is
> the GK but he is normally left out of the numbers.
Yes my mistake. I think I am writing it the way it's done in the
other football, where defense alignments are from front->back (forward
most to opponent->furthest removed from opponent).
> I'd keep the starting back 4 and Howard. Donovan, Bradley, Demsey, and
> Edu in mid. and Jozy and Buddle up top. But that is me.
I am guessing your lineup is special to how the US should attack the
Algerians, possibly based on things you saw in their ability to make
Or is this basically a general lineup attempting to stop from falling
behind early, no matter who the opponent?