Monday, June 25, 2012

Reds' Revolution ReRun

Mood: Irritated, Disappointed, Baffled
State of Mind: Wondering why I didn't choose another sport to love; like biathalon
Location: TFC proof bunker far from BMO

Deja Vu: 
Dictionary definitionnoun, The illusion of having previously experienced something actually being encountered for the first time.
Matrix definition - A deja vu is usually a glitch in the Matrix. It happens when they change something.
TFC definition - Refuse to learn from past mistakes and exhibit the same behaviours on a repeated basis.

Well that was freaking fantastic wasn't it? Another nightmarish defensive breakdown, another 2 points thrown away, another great effort by Milos Kocic, Ashtone Morgan and Danny Koevermans wasted and another failure to close out the match - perhaps they should watch the A.B.C. clip from Glengarry Glen Ross during the half of every game?

This team's inability to close out games and opponents is reaching epic proportions of frightfulness with every passing game. Oh wait, they don't have a passing game anymore...anyway, back to ranting.  Are TFC afraid to win? Perhaps they feel that they don't deserve to win?  Or perhaps they're just incapable of learning and are finally showing their lack of talent, fire and commitment. I'm going out on a limb and say the latter

In an almost carbon copy of the match against Houston our boys came out pressing and looking to take the early advantage. And thanks to some stellar work by Ashtone Morgan (arguably his best game; damn he's going to be good) that's exactly what happened when Danny slotted home a beauty of a cross from Morgan who'd made a great run down the left side to start everything off.  So 4th minute, up 1-0? Fantastic; lots of shouting and celebrating amongst me and my family; and yet as before I was still uneasy.

Our boys by no means had everything locked down and Milos (with a stellar game) had to make  several key saves to keep the Rev off of the score sheet.  Then minutes before the half Morgan again made a fantastic run down the left and sent in yet another beauty of a cross that eluded Danny but found RJ for his first (finally!) goal of the MLS season. 2-0!!  Woot - except I was still worried...sadly with good reason.

Second half brought the coming disaster that we'd all been fearing and as the half went on we could see coming. As the half progressed the Revolution continued to press and swarm the TFC end - and other than some early runs by Morgan (again, great game from him) there was zero forward momentum, no attack build-up, just growing chaos.  Milos was the deciding factor in the second as he again and again kept his team in the game; coming up with several big saves as the defense seemed incapable of protecting their keeper. And of course the inevitable finally occurred when Blake Brettschneider was right there waiting to put in the rebound from a Benny Feilhaber shot. It was all down hill from there as the defense completely fell apart and were seemingly helpless to stop any part of the Rev attack. The final nail came in the dying minutes of the game when Chris Tierney slotted home the equalizer and once again the Reds let 2 points slip from their grasp - fun!

As a fanbase we've put up with a lot from our team and will continue to do so; why? Because TFC are our team and hey, you've got to support your team regardless of outcome, right? Right - but we don't have to be happy about it. We don't have to be happy about watching outstanding performances from Ashtone Morgan, Milos Kocic and (finally) Danny Koevermans go to waste. We don't have to be happy about a team that cannot seem to learn from its mistakes. Those of us that are truly passionate about this team die a little each time we watch our team fall to pieces, every time they again fail to defend against a set piece, every time they punt the ball down the field and give chase aimlessly (welcome to MarinerBall) and every time they fail to close out a game in which they should rightfully come away with three points. It breaks my heart, it truly does. 

Speaking of being incapable of learning; what was Mariner thinking when he again subbed off almost his entire midfield leaving a young and inexperienced backline alone to fend for themselves against what anyone could see was the coming onslaught.  Did he not watch his team's "performance" in the last 20-30 minutes of the Houston match? I get that Frings may still be suffering from the knock he got towards the end of the Houston match and with so many matches coming up you don't want to make a minor injury worse; fine. But the removal of Avi (why oh why do they take him off every game?) and JDG mystifies me - as do their replacements. Not one defensive or experienced midfielder came on. Yes it was heartwarming to see Silva come on in the 59th minute and he did some nice things. And yes, Emory is a CB (see! a defender!) except he hasn't played in weeks and made a young and inexperienced backline even more so...and then bringing on Lambe instead of Stinson? I can't for the life of me figure this out - this team is not even remotely capable of defending a lead - especially with a midfield and back four that undermanned.

I'd like to say that the positives outweigh the negatives in this one - ooh, they're scoring! - but they don't. I never expected this team to set the league on fire this season; but I did expect something resembling progress, not a backward slide into house league levels of play.  I don't even expect them to win (that stopped several matches ago) but I do expect them to compete; and hell when they hold a two goal lead I do expect them to come together and close out the match - because that's what a team does. I haven't abandoned my team, never will and I'll be back on Saturday ready and willing to cheer them on. Just give me something to cheer about; give us all something to cheer about - for longer than 45 minutes this time, OK?

And now for something completely different (or exactly the same):

Lowdown Links: Here's the view from my blogging brethren - Duncan at Waking The Red and Red Nation Online.

1 comment:

  1. You're spot on with your comment about subbing off the entire engine of the midfield. Diabolical coaching decision. It would not have been justice, had TFC won the game. You could sense the tying goal coming. Not impressed so far with Winter's replacement.