DCU 1 America 0
In the first few minutes of the game Burch reminded me of what we miss with Namoff out, creativity from the back. Not only did he have a run up the line but he stayed with it and had a great cross into the box. Then in the 16th he makes another creative run and almost has a goal from it. We have missed that kind of play from the back. Burch continued in the second half with another great cross. Then Boswell started getting into the action and made several, though unproductive, runs. Having offensive threats coming from the back does wonders for our creativity and danger.
The first half was excellent. We controlled the game and we were constantly dangerous. We won the loose balls. Gomez looked much better in this match than he has in quite some time. Maybe that is due to the space he was given to work with, or maybe he just wanted it a little more. He certainly looked like he wanted a goal. Obviously in the second half Soehn changed his game plan (which worked, but I didn't like, I complain below) to protect the 1 goal lead. We continued hustling to the loose balls and played through the fouls.
Speaking of fouls, referee Carlos Batres was very close to completely losing this match. The fouls were hard and often. There were more infractions on the part of America but we had enough of our own that went uncalled. It wasn't so much the competitive advantage that the non calls created as it was the physical danger on the field that bothered me. There were some vicious blows out there. At one point McTavish wasn't even looking at the America player that went up for a header when he just threw his arms and body into the guy. Maybe Drew Carey was right, soccer really is a violent game.
My complaint with our performance is that we still don't have the killer instinct to put a game away when we have the momentum. Why didn't we press, when we were a man up and dominating possession? Why were our first two subs defensive? It's almost as if we had forgotten that just four days ago we were a man and a goal up and we gave up a late goal to only get the tie. This appears to be more of a coach's tactical decision considering the entire team's unwillingness to go forward late in the second half. Enough complaining, we won and we are still in the race for the SuperLiga Championship.
Facts and Reality for SuperLiga Match 1.2
1. Three points.
2. A backup striker scored. Very nice strike Dyachenko.
3. DCU didn't ruin the MLS unbeaten streak in this Mexico vs. USA competition, LA did last night.
4. We weren't mediocre, we have found a bit of a spark.