The Independent Variable
⚽️ USA v Netherlands - First Half Thoughts
3 December 2022
The only other game I’ve watched of the US so far is the Iran match, so I may be missing some context, but I have a lot of issues with the strategy the US seem to be using so far given the personnel on the pitch. These are some random thoughts.
- Dest is being extremely under utilized. He’s probably their best weapon for build up play, but the US have been playing up the left side for what feels like 85% of plays. (As I’m writing this in the 44th minute, Dest showed his skill in attacking the box up the middle.)
- The defense has been fine (whelp there’s goal number two… and likely Dest’s fault), but I don’t think Adams is strong enough defensively to be the number 6 if McKinnie and Musah continue to push up. I’m probably spoiled with Brazilian sixes, but Fernandinho, Casemiro, Fabinho, are/were one man wrecking crews who could stop an attack before it could ever reach the defense. Adams seems to be more of a central midfielder, which leaves pockets open for build up and leaves the US defense without another stalwart defender for set pieces.
- Ferreira isn’t a skilled enough number 9 to be out there in a game like this. I’m bummed I didn’t get to see Sargent play to know if he fits the role better (I doubt it given his stature—you need someone both positionally smart and strong to win those battles). Given the skill of Pulisic and Weah on the wings, Dest’s capabilities, and the weakness at defensive midfield, I’d love to see someone like Gio Reyna come in and play a false nine.