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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys,

You regulars may have noticed that I am dissatisfied because of what I perceive as a lack of toughness and committment to defense by our midfileders.

I may well be one of those "know-nothing fans" that Bruce talked about as the worst part of his job. I say this because I have just read a most interesting post on Bigsoccer.com that talks about what the poster calls a "wing-lock" that Arena coaches. I recommend reading it in the US Mens New and Analysis forum. It is by Ursula. It makes me reconsider some of my prejudices against particular players, especially Reyna.

BTW - Xtratime is my forum. I hardly ever surf other sites and don't intend to start now. This is the BEST forum because of our managers and the courtesy shown here. Nonetheless, the referenced post is worth reading. You will note that the following posts consist of the typical stuff you see at other forums.

Oldplayer

P.S. OSF, this is my first ever thread starter. If it is out of line because of its reference to another forum, please delete with no hard feelings.
 

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No need to apologize, that's an excellent thread and worth everyone's time to read.

I'm a little frustrated though, because I was working on something just like that but Ursula beat me to it. ;)
 

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That was an excellent point, OP. :)

When we watch our team play the powerful European teams, we often wonder how can the other teams can play so rough and still don't get carded! One of the reasons is that everyone expects them to play rough, including the referees!

That's the mentality our team needs. Play rough defense, not those "ankle biting techniques" ala Richie Williams, but "rough you up if you dare to come near" type.

Just watch some of the top teams play defense, teams such as Italy, France and Argentina. Their defense will hit you as soon as you touch the ball, they will knock you on your rear from the first minute until the final whistle. That's how they disrupt your rhythm.
 

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Tune out now if you don't want to hear me talk about my play again, but.....

.... last weekend we were getting spanked 3-0 in the first ten minutes against a new team in the league, completely loaded with talent, they train hard twice a week. We are not so deep anymore, train lightly as a team once a week, half the guys don't even attend that (me and a couple other guys have other training sessions we go to though). I started on the sideline as I arrived just at the opening whistle. No one was putting a lick on anyone, everyone b!tching about somebody else's job. I was p!ssed. Came on as right back and obliterated three opponents the first three chances I got. Hard onto their asses. One got up to get in my face and I did the old backhanded short punch to the nuts as I jogged away, unnoticed by ref. Captain took me out before I got a red. I came back second half and stayed up the arse of whoever came near me. No goals from my side all day.

Ridiculous comparison in a way yes, old boys rec league vs. WC final professionals. But the concept is the same, and it has proven the same in every sport I have ever played. You have to intimidate and dominate physically to hope to win a championship in anything.
 

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I don't know mate.....

All that talk of a-mids and d-mids and winglocks and lug nuts did my head in

Salient points rather heavily over analyzed, methinks.

In a nutshell the team is built around one player, (Reyna), who is remarkably unspectacular.

So, i'm going to stay here and gripe about stuff rather than whore out my whinge-ing to that board...My little clandestine visit to this other board though has made me realize there are more than the dozen or so of us who post here who are actually following football in this country.
 

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Great Thread indeed. Excellent analysis on the technical side of the game, as well an in depth look at the relation each player has to the others. Great read.

As to the physical side of the game, it can be summed up in many teams but only one comes truely to mind. IRELAND.

Ireland managed to qualify over Holland, and played very impressive in a tough group, not because they are loaded talent wise (they're not), but because they have one man who patrols the midfield like a satanic pit bull. ROY KEANE.

He's the boss at MAN U and he's the boss for EIRE. If REYNA ever needs to emulate someone, in the sense of physical play, it is this man.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I am glad you guys read the referenced post and found it interesting. I think Paul D., Freddie, RedEagle, Kerry and I all kind of think alike, though. Two fired-up tough opposing mid-fielders can bring to naught all of Arena's plans. Especially, if the ref's allow a rough game.

The Oklahoma High School championship was just won by a tuff hardnosed bunch of boys from the small town of Chickasha. They beat a large Tulsa school with loads of talent and more than a few excellent players. Chickasha had only two true soccer players on the field (not counting the goalie PaulMay, who was the difference in the end!). The other guys just hustled, played smart and disruptive. Won in overtime by a counter attacking midfielder's blast from 32 yards out. Tulsa outshot the Chicks 16-7, possession time at least 75-25%. Oddly, the more physical Chicks were called for FEWER fouls than the Tulsa team, but IMHO did by far the most damage per foul in physical, mental and strategic effect.

Freddie, this goes along with your personal story above. (Of course we don't mind your war stories. Now that the picture of you planting Santa is firmly implanted in my brain, I can imagine the entire events as if I were there.) I just hope we don't get pushed off the W/C stage without a fight!

Oldplayer
 

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Seeing we brought in war stories I will tell you one of my own. One practice a week we train Physical tactics. This is where One kid has the ball and the two others Physically try to take it off him, either by pushing tripping or pulling his shirt. The lad with the ball can only use his body to protect the ball. From this we progress to piggy back where the player with the ball carries another on his back and two others use the same tactics to take it off him. This builds strength in the lower body. Now we had two parents pull there kids from the team saying it was to rough.
I tried to tell them that as they get older and we are preparing them for Highschool and beyond that they are going to have to deal with this type of play. To no avail I might add. We also work on 50/50 balls where two players run after the ball and the one who arrives first blasts it at the other. I was tired of seeing too many kids turn away from the ball in match situations, or worse yet Peroetting in the air. No one does this anymore. as it costs them a 1 mile run if they do. The physical aspect of the game can win you more battles than the finness.
 

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Way to go coach! Those are great drills. I can remember assistant coaches lining up a dozen balls from ten yards away and rocketing them at me in the goal, bang, bang, bang, no mercy. Just keep doing it till you get gassed. Also great is going out to practice early and getting in the goal while a guy crosses to dudes at the 18 and in the box and flying around to cut out the crosses or save the shots. Great workout. You sweat in a hurry doing that.

Now you've got me psyched for practice tonight! Nice big high school field in the country, play til dark, hang in parking lot after, drink beers and watch the planets line up behind the crescent moon tonight.....

.... right here...
 

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Hey, freddie! How much that personal satelite cost ye ta get it in orbit? I want one.
 

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It is a direct link to the CIA satellite, so they can transmit those messages direct to my brain.... :)

Dude, just go to www.mapquest.com. Look for an address around most major metro areas and you can select an "aerial photo" tab for the pics.... then move around, zoom in, save if you want. Great time waster. For a day like today. When I have accomplished exactly Jack Shit. :)
 

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Hey! Watch it! Two smilies in that post!

Thanks. Now Jack ain't gonna see shit from me either.
 
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