Thursday, August 27, 2009

Quick Thoughts on RSL Drubbing of Chivas

Finally, RSL manages to get 3 points in their road whites. Finally!

Unfortunately they had to wear the road whites at home in order to do so. Because of a mixup by the league office, RSL was actually left to play with their white tops and blue trunks. The league originally had RSL set to wear their familiar home red tops, with Chivas in blue, but RSL's team administrator noticed the two colors were hard to distinguish and the league agreed 2 hours prior to kick. So RSL had to make a last minute switch to the white tops. Coach Kreis joked that he was expecting a check from the league for the mistake, because every time he makes a mistake he has to send them one.

Now on to the important part, the match:

First of all, Chivas looked awful. They appeared set to settle for the draw early on and made no serious effort to attack, and were unfortunately also horrible at holding on to the ball. On the other hand, RSL was moving the ball with precision. They still struggled in the final 3rd until late in the 1st half, but their movement was more fluid than it's been in recent weeks and they played some nice combinations.

That goal outburst was amazing. There were at least 2 or 3 near misses by RSL in the second half, otherwise they could have replicated the 6-0 drubbing of New England from earlier this season. I think it was due to a combination of the poor play by Chivas, and the nice passing/combination play of RSL.

RSL was extremely efficient in the offensive end. They had 11 shots on goal with 16 total shots taken. It seemed like they were getting more wide-open shots than they typically have gotten in the past.

Here are my thoughts on a few players:

Will Johnson: effort and coverage of the field was great as always. Delivery of the ball - corners, crosses, free kicks was awful. However, Will was very active on the ball and made numerous nice plays to get the attack in gear.

Pablo Campos: Good effort. I think he earned some more time on the pitch. He creates some difficulty for the defense that can really open up holes in the box for his teammates.

Rachid El Khalifi: Still waiting. I can see some sparks there, but he needs to put it all together. Not very effective on the right side.

Fabian Espindola: a beast. MOTM in my opinion. His effort, tenacity, and technical ability are turning him into one of the more valuable players on the team. After the match he told me that playing the wing-attacker "its a little weird for me because I'm a striker", but admitted that he's "getting used to it", and he "just want(s) to play".

Andy Williams: Had a good match. I was worried about this choice, as Andy hasn't had great form for most of the year, but he played fairly well. He was obviously gassed late in the game and I was a bit surprised that Beckerman came out with the final sub instead of Andy.

Robbie Findley: Great night. As many others have said, I think Super-Sub is Findley's best role. BTW - don't look now but he's second in the league in goals.

Nick Rimando: Bored. I think he collected a few daisies to take home to his wife though. Six shots from Chivas?

Bor-lave: Best center back combo in the league, hands-down.

Carey Talley: Ole! Nice matador defense in the second half! I think he's still twisting and spinning around in front of the South goal.

Yura Movsisyan: still in exile. Actually I saw him at halftime. He appears to be "recovering".