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Rock the Crossbar

Wednesday, May 3

SCREWED

http://chicago.fire.mlsnet.com/photogallery/0529_dcne/8_sm.jpg What IS Arena thinking? Brian Ching is the most ponderous forward in the MLS, a great lumbering goal hanger who needs more chances before scoring than Andy Cole, Kevin Phillips, and Kanu combined. Yet Twellman, who is more lively than 10 of Ching is left out after game after game of ripping it up for the USA. What could Arena possibly see in Ching over Twellman?

26 Comments:

  • Tom? Andras?

    By Blogger TheBusbyBoy, at 9:19 AM  

  • Yeah, this was the one decision I just don't get even a little bit. Only thing I can think is that Arena feels that Twellman doesn't score all the goals he should and that the ones he does are simple tap-ins and the like. While this may or may not be true, I fail to see how Ching brings more than Twellman, who strikes me as a McBride in the making (not only with respect to goal-scoring but in terms of overall work-rate and style). Bottom line, Twellman will do more good than Ching, even if he's not doing as well as Arena feels he should. Otherwise, it's a shame Ralston's hurt, as I would have taken him over Olsen.

    By Blogger Glazer Shmazer, at 10:24 AM  

  • Perhaps Arena feels Chings size makes him more competitive against the immense back four of the Czechs and Italians? I can't much else why he's on the team but then Arena picks the best team to compete against all three group teams not who is the best player at his position.

    By Blogger duffinho, at 10:44 AM  

  • I'm cool with everyone but one -- Brian Ching.



    I'm incredulous that Arena has not included Twellman, who every time he's put on a USA shirt has absolutely rrrrrrrrriped it up for us. He displayed everything you'd hope for in a WC bubble player. Scored, set up goals, and showed boundless energy, riding and hounding the defenders and wearing them down.



    Contrast that with the simply awful form and displays from Ching. Ching at best is a lumbering goal hanger who needs 10 bites at the cherry to actually get his lips around the thing. For Arena to comment that he's in "terrific form" is simply not true. Arena has caught the Dubya "Feel" rather than see thing with this pick. Ching doesn't even give us what Conor Casey brings to the game and I'd sit Casey down every time in favor of Twellman.



    If you look at our forward players and strikers, Beasley-undependable in big games, Donovan-off form and possibly a head-case, Wolff-past his best, Johnson-will he recover his form lost to injury?, you only have McBride who is dependable right now.


    Ching only brings you McBride-Light as an option, nothing really different. Arena is really limiting his options by not picking Twellman.


    I too might have considered Noonan and Ralston over Convey and Olsen, but that's because I haven't seen Convey in even one Reading game this year. I've read that he's added to his game since the last season of suck he had at DCU, so Okay with that. Ben is a hard worker, and really no less talented than any bubble squad player. I do think that the New England trio of Noonan, Dempsey, and Ralston support Twellman very well as a unit. But really, the glaring thing is the omission of Twellman. Once again, the Mad Hatter has left me speechless

    By Blogger gooner71, at 10:46 AM  

  • This is great. If the US does not advance Sam's Army has their ready made excuse: "If we had Twellman instead of Ching we would have gone through" - Brilliant

    By Blogger Chris P, at 11:41 AM  

  • Great, now we've got Baldrick-ian cunning plan for failure.

    By Blogger gooner71, at 11:52 AM  

  • So lets have the predictions for the US games then.

    By Blogger TheBusbyBoy, at 12:23 PM  

  • Arena gave the following reason for selecting Ching:
    ''He did a fantastic job against Guatemala in Birmingham," said Arena, ''and he had a big goal at Jamaica in the semifinal round."

    Well then

    By Blogger Chris P, at 12:36 PM  

  • USA 1-3 Czech
    USA 0-2 Italy
    USA 0-0 Ghana

    Roll on plan 2010, or whatever its called.

    By Blogger Stand up if you hate Man u, at 12:44 PM  

  • USA 1-3 Czech
    USA 0-1 Italy
    USA 1-1 Ghana

    3 and out.

    By Blogger gooner71, at 1:13 PM  

  • USA 1 - 1 Czech
    USA 0 - 1 Italy
    USA 2 - 1 Ghana

    Then we go out on goal difference because Ching sucks.

    By Blogger Glazer Shmazer, at 1:23 PM  

  • Czechs 1-0 USA
    Italy 1-0 USA
    USA 2-1 Ghana

    Americans probably on first plane home.

    By Blogger Simon Burke, at 2:32 PM  

  • I don't understand why everyone has the US losing to Italy when the US is ranked 4th and Italy is not even in the top ten. Haven't you guys heard of FIFA?

    By Anonymous Stupid Plank, at 2:36 PM  

  • USA 0-2 Czech
    USA 0-1 Italy
    USA 2-1 Ghana

    By Blogger TheBusbyBoy, at 2:52 PM  

  • Czech Rep. 5-0 USA
    Italy 3-0 USA
    Ghana 3-1 USA

    As they say in youth tournaments when your team is over-matched from the start, two and a 'cue. In this case, it's three and a 'cue (as in three games then a bbq party, kids). I won't comment on Stupid Plank - clearly a set up meant to entice me into butchery.


    The Twellman issue is sad and pathetic - guess he's not a Nike guy, or hearts-playing buddy of Arena (like the Goose was for all of those sorry years at left back). Oh, and while we're on the subject...WHERE IS BRAD FRIEDEL??? Are you kidding me? The H&H duo are a couple of sieves.


    BRING BACK JOE MAX MOORE IMMEDIATELY. I don't care if his knees are crud. We have ZERO chance of advancing.


    By the way, I went to UCLA - but I still think Hejduk is a train wreck. Of course, Arena's comments about him: "He runs a lot." That's a direct quote.


    Project 40, Project 2010, etc, etc...PROJECT PATHETIC. I could go to the parks in East LA and pick a better 22 overall than this bunch.


    Only Beasley and Dempsey rate in my "book." Not that my book counts for squat. I'm moving to England. I hate it here.

    By Blogger George Cuddy, at 3:52 PM  

  • Ya though that 22 you would pick from LA probably would not be able to leave the country for Germany and get back in :-)

    By Blogger TheBusbyBoy, at 4:01 PM  

  • You figured out my master plan, again!

    By Blogger George Cuddy, at 4:15 PM  

  • While he's still very young, if you don't rate Gooch, you will soon.

    By Blogger Glazer Shmazer, at 9:01 PM  

  • Good news, or is it? Hejduk got hurt over the weekend and was replaced with Chris "I'm a headcase" Albright. The hits just keep on coming!

    By Blogger George Cuddy, at 2:25 PM  

  • Saw this point raised elsewhere and thought it was worth posting here...

    Some facts to ponder.

    56 - the number of nations who have qualified for the World Cup finals since 1990.

    15 - the number of nations who have made it to the knockout phase of two of the past three finals. -- Argentina, Belgium, Brazil (3), Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy (3), Mexico (3), Netherlands, Nigeria, Paraguay, Romania, Spain, Sweden, USA.

    10 - the number of nations who have made it to the knockout phase of two of the past three finals AND advanced to the last eight of at least one. -- Argentina, Brazil, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Romania, Spain, Sweden, USA

    7 - the number of nations who have qualified for the last five World Cups finals. -- Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Italy, South Korea, Spain, USA

    6 - the number of nations who have qualified for each of the past five World Cup finals, advanced to the knockout round of at least two of the last three, AND advanced to at least the final eight of one of those.

    Those elite nations are Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United States!

    By Blogger Glazer Shmazer, at 6:09 PM  

  • And, of course, everyone is very concerned with who finished third, or fifth, or eighth. One can always skew numbers and statistics to get them to say what one wants. Winning is all that matters, not showing up - to liken elite status to the USA and Spain with that of WC winners is ridiculous. I don't expect to hear Sam's Army chanting "We're #7" in Deutschland!


    Further, if you put a few more conditions on this breakdown, you might be able to come up with a 4th place in the world ranking for the USA. Oops! Looks like Nike already did that.


    Your facts may indeed be correct, but there is a lot of spin on them. Kind of like saying the Germans dominated the Russian western frontier up until the winter of 1942! Accurate, true, but it doesn't tell the entire story to its conclusion.

    By Blogger George Cuddy, at 8:32 PM  

  • Tom Tom Tom - these are so poor that I had to check if this was really from you.
    Incidentally, you make no mention of it but England advanced to 2 knockout stages of the last 3 finals - 98 losing on pens, 02 losing in quarter finals. Which also adds us to another of your woeful stats, the number of nations who have made it to the knockout phase of two of the past three finals AND advanced to the last eight of at least one.
    Not only are these bad stats but I duspute them!

    By Blogger Simon Burke, at 9:48 PM  

  • Terrible effort Tom. Must do better :-)

    I take it this "elsewhere" was bigsoccer.com?

    By Blogger TheBusbyBoy, at 10:53 PM  

  • I thought it curious that England were not on the list as well.

    As Disraeli, I believe, once stated there are lies, damned lies and statistics. This would only be disingenuous if true but somehow England was omitted. 51st state maybe?

    Also, afraid we must look at Concacaf. If you can't qualify along with Mexico you have no business even thinking you're the bees knees. The US plays city states and banana republics.

    Put Ireland in Concacaf and they qualify every time. I think Scotland would acquit themselves well also and they are ranked 60th or something. Scotland is at least as good as Panama which we're told are actually a good footballing country by certain quarters.

    I hope the US does well this summer but let's desist from the Bush-like misinformation campaign.

    By Blogger Chris P, at 9:39 AM  

  • Thought you'd all like that. The most obvious mistake is the notion that the U.S. has qualified for the last 5 Finals. We didn't have to qualify for '94. It's a whole lot of spin and little more, but I thought it might stir things up a bit.

    By Blogger Glazer Shmazer, at 10:44 AM  

  • I can only hope that Max Bretos weighs in on this issue. He is a genius!

    By Blogger George Cuddy, at 5:40 PM  

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