Morgan, Dunn see weekend action in Europe

Kieran Theivam February 13, 2017 294
Crystal Dunn played her first match for Chelsea Ladies in front of the home fans. (photo: Chelsea Ladies)

Crystal Dunn played her first match for Chelsea Ladies in front of the home fans. (photo: Chelsea Ladies)

Alex Morgan and Crystal Dunn were both in action this weekend for their respective new clubs, but it was another American, Ella Masar McLeod, who stole the show as she headed home late to deny Dunn’s Chelsea a friendly match win. The London club, who signed the Washington Spirit forward before Christmas in one of the biggest deals in the history of the FA Women’s Super League (FAWSL), hosted Masar’s FC Rosengard in a friendly just south of London at Carshalton Athletic FC on Sunday.

This was the first opportunity supporters of Chelsea had of seeing Dunn in the flesh, and after a slow start, she soon grew into the game and was a constant thorn in the Rosengard defense. She was deployed as a center forward in a front three, flanked by So-Yun Ji and Gemma Davison, with her pace causing plenty of problems for the Swedish club’s back line.

Although not able to score in the 90 minutes she played, Dunn had at least five or six efforts on goal, forcing a good save out of Rosengard keeper Zecira Musovic in the first half.

{RELATED: Will Carli Lloyd join USWNT mates in Europe?}

As seen many a time during her career in the NWSL, Dunn is also a provider as well as a scorer, and it was her lay-off to Chelsea captain Katie Chapman that saw the England midfielder strike the ball home to give the home side a 2-1 lead.

However, it would be Masar McLeod who had the final say on the game, as she headed home a late equalizer for her side as the spoils were shared with a 2-2 draw. Lotta Schelin and Karen Carney scored the other goals for Rosengard and Chelsea respectively.

Alex Morgan hit both posts on the weekend but could not find the back of the net for French leaders Lyon (Photo Copyright Patricia Giobetti for The Equalizer)

Alex Morgan hit both posts on the weekend but could not find the back of the net for French leaders Lyon (Photo Copyright Patricia Giobetti for The Equalizer)

Meanwhile in a later kick-off in France, Alex Morgan made her first appearance at the impressive Parc Olympique Lyonnais Stadium – the men’s stadium reserved for the women’s team’s bigger matches. Morgan would have to be content with a place on the bench as coach Gérard Prêcheur opted to go with Ada Hegerberg and Eugénie Le Sommer up front as they hosted rivals Juvisy.

Lyon were cruising 3-1 at half-time due to a double from Hegerberg and a solitary strike from Amel Majiri, before Morgan was introduced for the second 45 minute period, in place of Hegerberg. She did everything but score, having at least half a dozen efforts on goal, hitting both posts in the process, and forcing a good save out of Juvisy keeper, Céline Deville. But the U.S forward was a threat, worked hard, and got herself into scoring positions.

Having had a week at the club, then back stateside to Los Angeles for national team camp, and then back to Lyon after, Morgan’s start to life in France has been disjointed.

Post match, speaking to French Eurosport, she said: “I guess today just wasn’t my day. I’m getting settled in more, and getting used to my teammates. Everything was new, but I’m getting settled.”

Lyon went onto win the game 5-2, with Saki Kumagai adding a penalty, and Le Sommer rounding off the scoring for the home side. Clara Mateo and Ines Jaurena scored for Juvisy.

  • #1Fan

    I did not see the games, but sounds fairly routine from the reports. Dunn several chances created via her speed, but failed to convert them. Morgan, sounds similar. Not converting chances.

    • DNG

      These were the chances that really should have been finished. The other post was a pretty typical bad angle shot.

      https://twitter.com/Zac13_/status/830829281462853636
      https://twitter.com/KiersTheivam/status/830826100464943107

      • #1Fan

        So nothing new then.

        • DNG

          Nothing new. Morgan still moves more or less like she always has. Not overmatched but doesn’t quite fit into Lyon’s style of play. It does look like she’s trying to combine a bit more but we’ll see how that goes. On a separate note I like Lyon’s 3-5-2 shape way better than Ellis’ 3-4-3.

          • #1Fan

            Are Lyons players better ?

          • wosofan

            Lyon has about half of the French national team on it plus big stars from other countries like Hegerberg, Marozsan, Kumagai and Buchanan

          • #1Fan

            I get that. My question is are they better than the US NT players. Coz shape etc may be a function of that.

          • DNG

            I would say yes. Lyon’s players are a better fit for the 3-5-2 system especially the midfield 3 of Abily, Kumagai, and Marozsan. They still looked good when Seger subbed on for Abily. Majri is also a better wingback than Heath(more pace better crosser). Structurally I think the 3-4-3 is pretty weak up the middle though unless Ellis can get one or two of the attackers to be the key link or the two CMs are great ball movers. The reason I think it’s worked so well for Chelsea is because they have well rounded wide attacking mids who make it work but even their midfield has been overrun by the best teams. I’m less sure about it working against the best teams for the USWNT. I think a 3-5-2 might fit the personnel better.

          • #1Fan

            Chelsea 343 is a bit misleading with kante in there. ore like 3-3-3 with one rover./ ball chaser 🙂 I also think Pedro gets up and down and does drop into midfield areas..

            I think 343 is a function of trying to get Pugh on the field in a wide area. Im not sure I see her as a cam or 2 ST yet. I thought I would have by now.

            I dont really like 343 either . In the US 343, where does Lloyd play ?

          • DNG

            Agreed that it’s misleading. I think the system was put in place primarily because they were conceding too many goals and chances in a back 4 and supposedly had the personnel of a defensive team(Mourinho).

          • DNG

            Didn’t see the edited bit at first but I agree with you. My guess is that Ellis is trying to get as many attackers onto the field as possible with the formation but doesn’t really understand why it works for the teams currently playing it in the EPL. Should Lloyd really be in any formation? The only place for Lloyd in the 3-4-3 is at the tip of the spear. She’s a liability everywhere else.

          • #1Fan

            but she has scored a lot of goals 😉

          • Steglitz49

            Not an easy question to answer.

            Is Ada Hegerberg better than Alex Moragn? Yes.

            Does Lyon benefit from having Alex Morgan? Yes.

          • Breakers fan

            The smugness here in this thread from you two when describing the top goal scorer in the US for the last 5 years is off-putting. The person who has finished the most times. But it’s your day, you deserve to bask in it, I guess.

            I know, I know – many would have done it if they’d been given the chance!

          • DNG

            I am only describing what I saw. I hope she gets better and leaving the US to play for Lyon was a risk she didn’t need to take so I commend her for taking it.

          • #1Fan

            As have I, numerous times. I wonder how profligate she can be in front of goal and still play? I think it was said at the time, but Lyon do not need her. They have better forwards,.

          • DNG

            It seems like Aulas wants her to be on the pitch even if there are better options. The truth is that they can probably beat almost every team in the world if she is starting and not finishing great.

          • #1Fan

            Exactly. Another reason that her profligacy will not really be an issue. Unless she misses easy chances in the CL final. The thing is the personal risk she is taking is really not that big and I still applaud her for it.

          • Breakers fan

            Ok, But the chorus of “nothing new” has within it a look at history. Someone new to the game would never guess Morgan’s history from reading the comments here.

          • DNG

            I was responding to a specific commenter. The dialog between #1Fan(or yourself) and I isn’t one that doesn’t have a history based on previous discussions.

          • #1Fan

            because Morgans history is stated in absolute terms. # of goals. i happen to think she should have a lot more and I believe a players with better finishing and movement would.

          • Steglitz49

            You can win a soccer match by one solitary goal. You can force extra time and a pso by one solitary goal.

            Alex Morgan has repeatedly delivered the goods for the USWNT since 2010. Is she the best player in WoSo history? No, because that is Marta.

            Basta!

          • Breakers fan

            The dangerous thing about getting too comfortable with saying “she should have a lot more” is that, “ok, sure, she has missed some she should have made”, as every forward has, but yes, let’s levy that criticism. What that viewpoint does not take into account, does not acknowledge, as it definitely should, is that some number of her goals *would not have happened if other players had been involved*. It was the special ability of Morgan that made them happen. So the fallacy of that argument is to completely take for granted all of the goals she has scored but only question the ones she maybe should have scored but didn’t.

          • #1Fan

            lets just say that I dont see a marked change in goal output whomever plays. The thing is, speed, when employed in the way the US played , was what was needed to get on the end of chances the measure of any striker is going to be goals BUT in real advanced metrics you need to look at efficiency as well. I dont think AMs WAR is high. I think your are really stretching my comments to suggest that every goal she scored is taken for granted.

            I stand by my POV that she is a gets in many good positions and does not convert a high percentage and I dont think her ability is special. I think she has occupies a special position for a long time and I think she is very replaceable. Dunn, Press, and quite a few others could play that role with similar results

            Whats truly special abiility does she have ?

          • Breakers fan

            I don’t want to get bogged down in all the fine points of this topic. My conclusion is a very simple one: that I rate her higher than you do and I don’t assume or think that from 2011 until now that it is the case that “whomever” would have done pretty much what Alex has done. I do think Press has gotten shafted, pretty royally, though, during the same time period. I don’t like to make speculative comments as if they are things that have happened, so I won’t say that “she would have done the same”. I think it could have gone either way – better, the same or worse but the important and right thing to do is to give credit for things that have happened and the players who did them. Deal in real history. Otherwise no one, except maybe one player in a generation (20 years) ever deserves high acclaim, or many people do – because they *would have done it*. But.. you are very much entitled to not agree with me, I respect that.

          • #1Fan

            So by your “rules” we can only look at the numbers and do no analysis of the quality of the,. I respectfully disagree. i think Morgan is a bit of a compiler. Good but not special . Your comment on acclaim are just wrong. Because I dint think she is worthy of it does not follow that others are not or that its a 1 in 20 years thing. In the time Morgan has been playing i have seen several female players who I would call great. the only difference is they dont play for the US NT. Little, Smith, Marta, Formiga and many others come to mind. There are more. I just dont think she belongs in that company. You are clearly entitled to differ.

            Im still keen to know what truly special quality you think she has?

          • Breakers fan

            I consider quality. To do that thoroughly with her career would take an Encyclopedia Brittanica.

            HOFC has provided quite well and correctly her history of goals against top `10 opponents. She has tended to rise to the occasion quite well in her career, – not 100% of the time – but who has? That quality I value very, very, very highly. Press has a lot less chances in this realm but until she starts doing it she will not enter the discussion of clutch, great all-time players.

            You can only play against who your federation schedules you against.

            Your list of greats includes one other forward which is the only comparison that matters when discussing Morgan, in my opinion. And I’m sure Alex would be the first to agree that Marta is at another level, despite never being on a team who won a big tournament.

          • Breakers fan

            In summary, I think she’s been an excellent forward for the USA for the last 6 years. One of the best forwards in the world during that time. Beyond that, only speculation, as valid as it may be, exists, by the oceanful.

            Could she be better? Yes. Could every player? Yes. Is she working to improve? Yes.

          • #1Fan

            is she better than Leroux, Sinclair, Wambach, or even Dunn as a forward? Heck is she even a better striker than Lloyd? I dont think so . All in the the same ballpark to me give or take and i can make a case that each of those has a special quality. I cannot put her anywhere close to being the best in the world. I question whether the best forward in the world does not start every game for Lyon – injury not withstanding.

            She is effecive for the US, like every US name I have put up her has been,. Thats nbot a coincidence.

          • Breakers fan

            We’re at the agree to disagree point. Look closely at what I wrote – not that you have to agree, I just want to make sure you know what I said: “one of”, “speculation”, “longevity”. I do rate Wambach as highly or maybe even higher due to longevity and am also quite aware of parts of her game that could have been better. Dunn I think if played at forward her whole career could be better, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. Leroux – tons of potential. I like her a lot and always have. Been de-railed but lets see what happens. We’re already deep into speculation and I dismiss that in this argument. What has happened is the only undeniable thing, not what could or will. Sinclair – yes – has done more due to longevity.

            With Lyon are we talking about Hederberg? Tremendous start to a career. Let’s look at her at 27 and see what she’s done, then a discussion can occur. Definitely grant that great potential is there. My argument is not that Morgan is better than her but that to date she’s done a LOT more. Hederberg can’t be blamed for when she was born.

            Again, the conclusion is probably that very simply I think Morgan is, has been, better than you think she is, and has been. Does NOT mean I’m right or that you are.

          • Steglitz49

            The facts show that you are right.

          • DNG

            I am not looking at what the forwards have done over the course of their career. I think what matters is what they have done recently or within the past year or two. In that timespan I think Morgan has been good but not great. I certainly don’t think she been so good that I would definitely start her over Press, Dunn(and you know my opinion about Dunn at CF) or even a newcomer like Williams(who I think is very similar). The question I care about is, is she better than her competition right now, and I don’t think the answer is an unequivocal yes. I personally don’t like the 3-4-3 the way Ellis is setting her team up and would prefer a 2 forward 3-5-2. I’m not sure Morgan is one of the best 2 forwards right now to be a definite in my starting XI. I don’t have many definite players in my starting XI by the way. Right now I have Brian at CM and Dunn at WB and that’s pretty much it.

          • Steglitz49

            As I typed to #1Fan, who has blocked me, I see Alex Morgan as the Charlotte Kalla of WoSo.

            There may well be better analogies.

          • Reality

            While I give Morgan all due credit for making the most of her opportunities in important matches against superior teams, the fact remains that she was afforded those opportunities while Press was not. The troll that you enable with his “cut and paste” rants consistently fails to mention that Press has been given comparatively few minutes or similar opportunities and only distorts his “statistics” to vilify Press. So for the record…

            Comparing Morgan and Press career goal and assist stats reveals the following…

            Morgan Goal Stats w/o “Annus mirabilis” 2012:

            Year Caps Goals Minutes
            2010- 8- 4- 232″
            2011- 19- 6- 654″
            2013- 12- 6- 811″
            2014- 7- 5- 418″
            2015- 22- 7- 1547″
            2016- 16- 12- 1205″
            Total- 84- 40- 4867″
            Average minutes per goal = 121.68″
            Average goals per 90″ = .74

            Adding on “Annus mirabilis” for Morgan…
            2012- 31- 28- 2319″
            Average minutes per goal = 82.82″
            Average goals per 90″ = 1.09

            Grand Total
            Career- 115- 68- 7186″
            Average minutes per goal = 105.68″
            Average goals per 90″ = .85

            Press Goal Stats:

            Year Caps Goals Minutes
            2013- 12- 8- 554″
            2014- 23- 11- 1322″
            2015- 20- 10- 1159″
            2016- 18- 5- 785″
            Total- 73- 34- 3820″
            Average minutes per goal = 112.35″
            Average goals per 90″ = .80

            Here is a comparison of assists between Morgan and Press on the NT…

            Morgan Assist Stats w/o “Annus mirabilis”2012:

            2013
            Morgan – 811″ – 4 assists
            2014
            Morgan – 418″ – 4 assists
            2015
            Morgan – 1547″ – 0 assists
            2016
            Morgan – 1205″ – 3 assists

            Total
            Morgan – 3981″ – 11 assists
            1 assist every 361.91″
            .25 assists per 90”

            Adding on “Annus mirabilis” for Morgan…
            2012- 21- 2319″
            Average minutes per assist = 110.43″
            Average assists per 90″ = .81

            Grand Total
            Career – 32 – 7186″
            Average minutes per assist = 224.56″
            Average assists per 90″ = .40

            Press Assist Stats:

            2013
            Press – 554″ – 2 assists
            2014
            Press – 1322″ – 5 assists
            2015
            Press – 1159″ – 4 assists
            2016
            Press – 785″ – 2 assists

            Grand Total:
            Career – 13 – 3820″
            Average minutes per assist = 293.85″
            Average assists per 90″ = .31

            Morgan and Press are quite comparable in regard to goals (Press – .80 goals per 90″ v. Morgan – .85 goals per 90″)

            and assists (Press – .31 assists per 90″ v. Morgan – .40 assists per 90″)

            This is keeping in mind that Press was often played out of position and that 2012 substantially increased Morgan’s career total.

            I am so tired of this pissing contest between Morgan and Press supporters. Both are superior athletes and forwards and they should paired together already to use them both to maximum advantage.

          • Steglitz49

            You and NYRick started this pissing contest, as you now refer to it. History has not been on your side. Of course you are tired of it.

          • HOFCToDi

            Pressie Pooh has yet to even catch up to Abby Wambach.

            BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
            Lloyd – 11 (too many to list)
            Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRA x 2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
            Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
            Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
            Heath – 2 (JPN, CAN)
            Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
            Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)
            Horan – 2 (CAN, JPN)

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

            Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • HOFCToDi

            The ‘Press Gang Troll Brigade” are insanely stupid. As if FIFA doles out World Cup Trophies for beating up on tomato cans at meaningless international women’s friendlies.

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks for taking the time to provide this. Good to have the numbers in one spot.
            The one thing I didn’t agree with was that 2012 for Morgan should not be separated or named or quotation marks used (they, to me, imply sarcasm or somehow outside of reality), It happened, she did it, she should be commended highly for it and they rightfully are part of her career statistics, happening as they did in her career. Beyond that, thank you. You’re right that it isn’t a competition between the 2. They’re on the same team after all. You accept this, and embrace it – kudos to you for that!

          • HOFCToDi

            Who gives a damn about goals scored against tomato cans?

            The purpose of World Cup Qualifications is to weed out the tomato cans.

          • Breakers fan

            Here’s a stat I’d like to see: Minutes played AT FORWARD ONLY against Top 10 teams. Purely that number. Then goals scored in those minutes. Plus, time marches on. We’ll have 3 more examples within a month. I’m aware of what you’re talking about.

          • HOFCToDi

            Pressie Pooh is an international flop.

            Summer Olympic Games
            Games Started
            Leroux (DOB 07 May 1990) – 0
            Press (DOB 29 Dec 1988) – 1

            Summer Olympic Games
            Minutes Played
            Leroux (DOB 07 May 1990) – 77
            Press (DOB 29 Dec 1988) – 123

            Summer Olympic Games
            Goals Scored
            Leroux (DOB 07 May 1990) – 1
            Press (DOB 29 Dec 1988) – 0

            Christen Press is the quintessential international fraud.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • HOFCToDi

            Pressie Pooh is an international flop.

            Christen Press
            2016 Summer Olympic Games
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 SheBelieves Cup
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            A 27 year old adult outdone by an 18 year old teenager.

            Mallory Pugh
            2016 Summer Olympic Games
            Goals – 1, Assists – 0

            Mallory Pugh
            2016 SheBelieves Cup
            Goals – 0, Assists – 1

            Mallory Pugh
            2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals – 0, Assists – 2

          • HOFCToDi

            Pressie Pooh is an international flop.

            Christen Press
            2016 Summer Olympic Games
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 SheBelieves Cup
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Crystal Dunn
            2016 Summer Olympic Games
            Goals – 1, Assists – 1

            Crystal Dunn
            2016 SheBelieves Cup
            Goals – 1, Assists – 0

            Crystal Dunn
            2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

          • HOFCToDi

            If it wasn’t for Sydney Leroux, Christen Press would be NOTHING! Spoon feeding at its finest.

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/tournaments/2014-concacaf-womens-championship/141024-wntvmex#tab-1

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/tournaments/2015-fifa-womens-world-cup/150608-wntvaus#tab-1

            Christen Press
            FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Goals 1, Assists 0

            Christen Press
            CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals 1, Assists 0

            Christen Press
            Olympic Games
            Goals 0, Assists 0

            Christen Press
            CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals 0, Assists 0

            Christen Press
            SheBelieves Cup
            Goals 0, Assists 0

            Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • Reality

            That is indeed an important comparison which will take some time and research to compile insofar as it is also important to note how many minutes were played by each player in every game and whether they started and what position that they played, i.e. if out of position which of course only applies to Press. This would be much more complete and illuminating than the “cut and paste” troll’s distorted rants.

          • Breakers fan

            Don’t feel obliged to undertake that research project. I’m not going to do it. Only do it if you want to.
            Glad you weren’t being sarcastic in your attitude towards her especially great year.

          • HOFCToDi

            Name me one tournament where Christen Press took the USWNT by the scruff of the neck and carried the team on her back:

            FIFA Women’s World Cup
            CONCACAF Women’s World Cup Qualifying
            Olympic Games
            CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            SheBelieves Cup
            Algarve Cup

          • HOFCToDi

            As a footnote, the only time Christen Press scored a goal against France was when both first string centerbacks (Georges, Renard) for the France women’s national football team was out.

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/tournaments/2015-algarve-cup/150311-wnt-v-fra#tab-1

          • HOFCToDi

            How about the number of times Christen Press was BENCHED?

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            25 Oct 2015
            USA 3 BRA 1
            Minutes Played 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=24141

            Christen Press was BENCHED!

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            21 Oct 2015
            USA 1 BRA 1
            Minutes Played 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=24140

            Christen Press was BENCHED!

            Christen Press
            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            05 Jul 2015
            USA 5 JPN 2
            Minutes Played 0

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/66/12/93/eng_52_0705_usa-jpn_fulltime.pdf

            Christen Press was BENCHED!

            Christen Press
            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            30 Jun 2015
            USA 2 GER 0
            Minutes Played 0

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/52/49/eng_49_0630_usa-ger_fulltime.pdf

            Christen Press was BENCHED!

            Christen Press
            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            16 Jun 2015
            USA 1 NGA 0
            Minutes Played 0

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/00/60/eng_31_0616_nga-usa_fulltime.pdf

            Christen Press was BENCHED!

            Nevermind Christen Press started eleven of the first twelve matches for the USWNT in calendar year 2015.

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/lineups/2015-lineups

          • HOFCToDi

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 10 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
            Lloyd – 8 (AUS, BRA, GER, JPN x 3, BRA, FRA)
            Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRAx2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
            Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
            Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
            Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
            Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
            Lloyd – 11 (too many to list)
            Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRA x 2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
            Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
            Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
            Heath – 2 (JPN, CAN)
            Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
            Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)
            Horan – 2 (CAN, JPN)

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

          • #1Fan

            Can I ask why the top 10 team part is so relevant? My contention remains that the way the US play, the team tends to generate the chances and the strikers job is to put them away whether vs a top 10 or not. So when Im looking at efficiency i dont really care who its against. You may be using the stats to illustrate something different.

          • Breakers fan

            My thinking there was that everyone bashes Press for not scoring in “the big games”, against the top teams, but I knew that often she was playing a flank midfield for those games, so I wanted to narrow the numbers, the stats down to only when she played forward in those games to see if they showed that maybe she hasn’t done as poorly as people think she has in them when playing her appropriate position.

            About “efficiency” I personally don’t worry that much about — I do some, but not as much as others – shots scored vs. shots taken, if enough goals are being scored by the forward in question. The caveat would be: was it a reasonable chance to take? Of course I very much would LIKE the % to be as high as possible but I want forwards taking shots when it’s reasonable to do so. I don’t want them fiddling around or looking for another pass – unless there’s a great one – when they have a shot. Before taking the shot you don’t know what’s going to happen – it may score, it may deflect fortuitously for your team – so you can only “judge” a player at the moment of taking the shot. Was it the right decision? If so, I applaud the shot. Then you can get into how accurate of a shooter she is. Also “shots on goal” as I’ve mentioned many times, isn’t the best stat to me. It is, in a sense, as those are the only ones that have chance, but a well-hit shot that beats the keeper and goes an inch or two wide to me in many ways a better shot than a slow roller to the keeper or a softly hit ball in the air to her, so that stat to me also has flaws and hidden aspects. Not sure if a ball that hits the post is considered on goal or not on goal.

          • #1Fan

            I think your position is fine, but its one that a US fan can indulge becasue your team has historically been dominant and created several chances. As the game evolves (hopefuly) the efficiency of converting chances will become of increasing importance.

            if you look at the youth World Cups, this was the biggest shock to many of the top coaches – the lack of chance creation by the US and the margins they were out shot by.

            I sid it above, but I enjoyed the debate yday and respect the fact that folks can disagree with no malice. Tyvm

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks, the feeling is mutual. I think you have to be able to say what you really think about things without fear of hurting someone’s feelings. You should just try to be civil about it. Part of my thinking with “take shots!” is related to club, NWSL, play too. Nothing, or few things, bother me more in soccer than when a player passes up a good, legitimate shot, because of whatever reason is in her head – doesn’t want to fail, doesn’t want to appear selfish, has some “thing” about making great passes. Fans often bash shooters for volume of shots and I agree that there is a place for that, but that is also an “after the fact” criticism, knowing what happened. At the time did it make sense? That’s my first thought. A coach would have to really look at the individual shots and know the abilities of the shooter – how strong is her leg? is this a player, over our other ones, who we want to be taking our shots? — to decide whether he should talk to her about taking fewer shots. I think it can be dangerous to take that weapon away from a player by instructing her to not take shots. That’s really risky if she’s one of your most co-ordinated and powerful shooters.
            In those youth World Cups I would ask: How many at least reasonable, decent shots weren’t taken that could have been? Maybe not a lot but maybe some – would have to go back and watch.

            Also with efficiency there is other content within the numbers, namely there’s a huge difference between a shot on which a keeper makes a diving save and one that goes sailing off into the 18th row and wide of goal to begin with – but on paper they are the same – a missed chance.

          • #1Fan

            In the WCs not many clear well worked chances were created.

            As far as volume shooting, i would put Lloyd near the top. never met a long shot she did not like and folks go crazy when one goes in. That then fuels 20 more 🙂 is another major difference between the mens and womes game. “Poor” quality shots are rewarded far more often.

          • Breakers fan

            Ok good to know about the WCs and chances (lack thereof) created,

            I don’t want you or anyone to think I’m always in favor of shots being taken. I do have a criteria of “Is it the smartest move at that time?” A good amount of times I don’t think a shot that is taken should have been taken. Good point about how in the women’s game you are more likely to get a good result on a shot that isn’t great – more reason to take shots.

          • HOFCToDi

            #1 Fan is a worthless troll who keeps talking out of his arse.

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Minutes Played
            Lloyd – 630
            Press – 179

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Shots Attempted
            Lloyd – 17
            Press – 7

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Minutes Played per Shots Attempted
            Lloyd – 37.1
            Press – 26.7

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Shots on Goal
            Lloyd – 9
            Press – 2

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            SOG Percentage
            Lloyd – 9/17 (52.9%)
            Press – 2/7 (28.6%)

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Shooting Percentage
            Lloyd – 4/17 (23.5%)
            Press – 1/7 (14.3%)

            In every metric, Press was worse than Lloyd.

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/62/55/34/eng_07_0608_usa-aus_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/64/73/21/eng_19_0612_usa-swe_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/00/60/eng_31_0616_nga-usa_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/26/11/eng_38_0622_usa-col_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/35/93/eng_45_0626_chn-usa_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/52/49/eng_49_0630_usa-ger_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/66/12/93/eng_52_0705_usa-jpn_fulltime.pdf

          • HOFCToDi

            #1 Fan is a worthless troll who keeps talking out of his arse.

            2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup
            Shots on Goal
            USA 5 AUS 6
            USA 2 SWE 0
            USA 7 NGA 2
            USA 6 COL 2
            USA 4 CHN 2
            USA 5 GER 1
            USA 7 JPN 4

            What does that say about GER and JPN?

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/62/55/34/eng_07_0608_usa-aus_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/64/73/21/eng_19_0612_usa-swe_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/00/60/eng_31_0616_nga-usa_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/26/11/eng_38_0622_usa-col_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/35/93/eng_45_0626_chn-usa_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/65/52/49/eng_49_0630_usa-ger_fulltime.pdf

            resources.fifa.com/mm/document/tournament/competition/02/66/12/93/eng_52_0705_usa-jpn_fulltime.pdf

          • Breakers fan

            If you read the preceding posts you would have known that we were referring to the U17 and U20 World Cups recently played.

          • HOFCToDi

            Don’t even try to compare the quality of opposition during the 2015 Victory Tour (CRC, CRC, HAI, HAI) to the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Furthermore, CRC was without Shirley Cruz and Raquel Rodriguez in the aforementioned matches.

            ussoccer.com/matches/wnt/2015/150816-wnt-v-crc#tab-1

            ussoccer.com/matches/wnt/2015/150819-wnt-v-crc#tab-1

          • Breakers fan

            Not being on a crusade I do not bear down on this stuff as you do. I’m not that deep into these topics you present. I watch the games, I try to enjoy them, I move on. I try to keep it light, fun and positive. That is the place it has in my life. They’re the ones doing the work, Who am I to be so judgmental? So don’t expect me to respond to these posts by and large. – just so you know why.

          • HOFCToDi

            I present the FACTS.

            The “Press Gang Troll Brigade” can’t handle the TRUTH. The “Press Gang Troll Brigade” have nothing but sheer obfuscation.

          • HOFCToDi

            It sure sounds like you are on a crusade:

            “Minutes played AT FORWARD ONLY”

          • Breakers fan

            Simple fact request (explained why elsewhere) that I wouldn’t dwell on even after seeing it. Don’t feel like you have to research it though.
            I really can’t stand pursuing this topic anymore. I have my own opinion on it. Everyone knows yours here. You may want to move on to forming other thoughts?

          • HOFCToDi

            Obviously, since you refuse to respond to three queries.

            I don’t dwell on nitpicking the aspects of a particular match. Anyone can find fault in a player’s performance in a particular match.

            As for other thoughts, I already have ………………………………………………….

            Eight midfielders under the age of 25:

            Dunn (DOB 23 Jul 1992)
            Killion (DOB 27 Jul 1992)
            Mewis (DOB 09 Oct 1992)
            Brian (DOB 26 Feb 1993)
            Horan (DOB 26 May 1994)
            Lavelle (DOB 14 May 1995)
            Sullivan (DOB 20 Dec 1995)
            Pugh (DOB 29 Apr 1998)

          • Breakers fan

            Last response on this: I will enlighten you about the significance of those 3 matches if you write a 300-500 word essay here. It has to be completely honest and truthful and real. The subject is: “The Origin and Cause of My Burning Hatred for Christen Press”.

          • HOFCToDi

            I already answered that question.

          • Breakers fan

            I missed the answer – what is it again?

          • HOFCToDi

            The “Press Gang Troll Brigade” has engaged in a systemic vilification of any player on the USWNT that competes for a roster spot at the expense of Christen Press since the conclusion of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

            In addition, the inane excuses by the “Press Gang Troll Brigade” have been quite comical since the conclusion of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup:

            It’s Abby’s fault
            It’s Carli’s fault
            It’s Alex’s fault

            WoSo does not revolve around the world of Christen Press. The USSF does not revolve around the world of Christen Press but 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification, CONCACAF Fifth Round. The USWNT does not revolve around the world of Christen Press. Furthermore, the future of US Soccer is Christian Pulisic and Mallory Pugh not Christen Press.

            Finally, the bottom line:

            Alex Morgan – international superstar
            Christen Press – international fraud

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saBukkFiCRo

            The stuff of legends at “The Theatre of Dreams”!

          • HOFCToDi

            Allow me to enlighten you. The focus of this message board should be about the future of the USWNT (Killion, Williams, Lavelle, Sullivan, Pugh) for 2019 not Christen Press.

          • HOFCToDi

            You are a blithering idiot, a clueless moron, and a worthless troll.

          • DNG

            The one thing I’ll say is that I have sometimes focused too much on efficiency when evaluating forwards. Sometimes it’s worth playing a forward who might be a little less efficient than another simply because they are better at getting on the end of chances. That’s a skill I don’t believe is completely determined by the quality behind the striker. Call it the strikers instinct to always be in the right place at the right time which is almost as rare as finding a natural world class finisher.

          • HOFCToDi

            Enlighten us all to the significance of the four matches.

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            8 Feb 2015
            USA 0 FRA 2
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 2, Shots on Goal 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=16171

            Christen Press
            Algarve Cup
            6 Mar 2015
            USA 3 SUI 0
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 1, Shots on Goal 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=17273

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            17 May 2015
            USA 5 MEX 1
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 0, Shots on Goal 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=17091

            Christen Press
            FIFA Women’s World Cup
            12 Jun 2015
            USA 0 SWE 0
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 2, Shots on Goal 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=15317

            Nevermind Christen Press started eleven of the first twelve matches for the USWNT in calendar year 2015.

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/lineups/2015-lineups

          • HOFCToDi

            Enlighten us all to the significance of the three matches.

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            5 Jun 2016
            USA 2 JPN 0
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 2, Shots on Goal 1

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=26862

            Christen Press
            International Women’s Friendly
            9 Jul 2016
            USA 1 RSA 0
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 2, Shots on Goal 0

            foxsports.com/soccer/boxscore?id=26928

            Christen Press
            2016 Rio Olympics
            09 Aug 2016
            USA 2 COL 2
            Goals 0, Assists 0, Shots Attempted 4, Shots on Goal 1

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/lineups/2016-lineups

          • HOFCToDi

            Your argument doesn’t fly since Megan Rapinoe has scored more quality goals than Christen Press in the last four years.

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 10 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)

          • Breakers fan

            I do appreciate the data, selective as it is, that you have provided over time. It’s run its course, though. I for one will not be replying to anything to do with Press stats provided in the future – not that you should care, but just so you know.

          • Reality

            Did an edit to bring all NT stats up to present moment so take another peek. As regards my separation of Morgan’s 2012 year in which she should have won the FIFA POY, I think it is important to highlight that as it was so remarkable both in itself and in comparison to the rest of her career. No sarcasm at all because it was truly a miraculous performance by her.

          • HOFCToDi

            Christen Press has yet to even catch up to Abby Wambach.

            BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
            Lloyd – 11 (too many to list)
            Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRA x 2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
            Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
            Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
            Heath – 2 (JPN, CAN)
            Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
            Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)
            Horan – 2 (CAN, JPN)

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

            Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • #1Fan

            i dont know the history, but I am only talking about Morgan. I am not looking at her relative to Press.

          • Reality

            Sounds good to me. I was merely trying to put things in perspective and lay this squabbling over the two players to rest. But that is probably excessively optimistic on my part.

          • #1Fan

            Ha. I totally understand. My comment was more to distance myself from the squabble. I love the game and dont really see it as Press vs Morgan. Apart from 2012, which was an incredible year, I have not seen any recent reasons to elevate Morgan above the pack of forwards. They all bring something to the team and the goal outputs seem similar to me. At some level your numbers seem to bear that out.

            Coaches , like fans have a preferences for certain players. I can see that Morgan has earned the right to be first choice but I think there are enough other forwards out there who are in the same class that I cannot elevate her to the top of that heap. Basis 2012 it looked like she was going to be the best for years to come but in my opinion that has not happened.

          • Steglitz49

            You set yourself up as WoSo guru and then you ask — “Whats truly special abiility does she have ?” — if you have been following Alex’s career over the past 6-7 years you must know.

            Alex Morgan scores goals when the chips are down. She is the Charlotte Kalla of WoSo, if you like. Stina Blackstenius is cast from the same mould too as is Ada Hegerberg.

          • #1Fan

            i think you are entitled to your views, but having the luxury of being a high volume shooter in a team that is often far far better than the opponent cannot be ignored.

            i dont think AM is an efficient or particularly good finisher and this weekend only confirms my opinion.

            I feel exactly the same about Dunn and have said so numerous times.

          • Breakers fan

            I agree that in the last couple years her finishing hasn’t been great. She’s said the same.

          • Kyle

            You don’t like Dunn at all.. All you ever do is hate on her.

          • #1Fan

            I love Dunn. I just dont think she is best as a forward. Clear enough for you ?

          • DNG

            Apparently it’s not possible to like a player and also criticize their use/play in a specific role.

          • #1Fan

            Exactly. Its funny how my opinion stated by me – and you can attest to is consistency re Dunn – can be twisted by a poster AND get upvotes. Hilarious really.

          • DNG

            Well one of the upvotes was Steglitz49. He hasn’t gotten over how you blocked him yet.

          • #1Fan

            Makes sense.

          • Steglitz49

            It is his loss.

            If #1Fan can’t cope with critical appraisal why should anyone take him seriously? The measure with which he dishes out to the players will be measured out to him in return.

          • HOFCToDi

            Let’s judge a player’s career based upon a three game span with Olympique Lyonnais Féminin. Ridiculous!

          • HOFCToDi

            Alex Morgan is the only individual in the entire USWNT player pool that has scored a goal against Sweden in the last four years.

            ussoccer.com/stories/2016/08/12/19/37/160812-wnt-falls-to-sweden-4-3-in-penalty-shootout-after-1-1-draw-in-2016-olympic-quarterfinals

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/tournaments/2015-fifa-womens-world-cup/150612-wntvswe#tab-1

            ussoccer.com/womens-national-team/tournaments/2014-algarve-cup/140307-wnt-v-swe#tab-1

            ussoccer.com/stories/2014/03/17/13/10/wnt-wins-group-b-at-2013-algarve-cup-to-advance-to-final

            As a footnote, Alex Morgan was not available for the 2014 Algarve Cup. It’s no wonder the team fell apart.

            Let’s absolve every other player in the entire USWNT player pool during the last four years for the lack of production. Ridiculous!

          • HOFCToDi

            The “Press Gang Troll Brigade” has engaged in a systemic vilification of any player on the USWNT that competes for a roster spot vis-à-vis Christen Press since the conclusion of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup:

            Dunn, Crystal
            Leroux, Sydney
            Lloyd, Carli
            Morgan, Alex
            Pugh, Mallory
            Williams, Lynn

          • guest

            anybody know who the top uswnt goal scorer is in the last four years?

          • guest

            Isn’t it Morgan?

          • Breakers fan

            Carli Lloyd?

          • DNG

            I think you are correct. I believe Lloyd is at 66 and Morgan is at 63

          • HOFCToDi

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 10 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16
            Lloyd – 8
            Leroux – 7
            Wambach – 5
            Rapinoe – 4
            Press – 3
            Holiday – 2
            Heath – 2
            Johnston – 2
            Dunn – 2
            Horan – 2

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

          • rkmid71

            Pro sports in general is a tough business. What have you done for me lately? Look how Tiger Woods is critiqued these days. He’s one of the greatest of all time. For better or worse, AM set a very high standard for herself in 2012 (28 goals, 21 assists). I’m assuming she’s injury free now. Is there a reason fans shouldn’t expect her to be able to perform close to 2012 levels? 2016 (17 goals, 3 assists) was a significant step forward after the injury impacted 2013, 2014, 2015. She’s 27 and should be in her prime.

          • Breakers fan

            True. By the way – congrats on the U Conn win! You were right, my prediction was wrong. I didn’t realize how good this group is,. S. Carolina got really sloppy after taking the lead.

            Yeah, about Morgan – I don’t heap too many expectations on a player in my mind. Not that it matters but I just try and enjoy the team, hope for the best and hope they all do well. I don’t “demand” a certain # of goals vis-a-vis 2012. I hope she approaches those numbers. I know she is shooting for that, but if she doesn’t reach them I don’t see her as a failure. For one, the world is I would say pretty much better now.

          • rkmid71

            UConn wasn’t perfect and faced some adversity (foul trouble, ankle injury to Nurse, Samuelson had an off night, etc), but Gabby Williams was just amazing in that game. Relentless for 40 minutes and just willed the team to a win. She had like 16 pts and 9 rebounds at halftime. And Collier also very good. SC had a great game plan, just couldn’t sustain it. And Dangerfield stepped up big time when Nurse went out injured and had a great game. I”m not 100%,but I think I saw Rapinoe in the stands. And I saw Julie Foudy tweeted congrats: “My GOODNESS. Standards, respect, hard work, celebrating teammates, leadership. Getting it DONE.”

          • Breakers fan

            Well-said. Definitely Rapinoe sitting next to Sue Bird. I believe Bird plays and has played on Seattle’s WNBA team for years, thus the origin of their apparent friendship. A long way to go though from Seattle, not sure if she had other East Coast business.Gabby Williams was fantastic. That other Freshman point guard, (Bent?) never played. Dangerfield had a few great no-look passes – I thought of you mentioning that before. Did you hear the talk about how good their incoming class, plus that 6’6″ Duke transfer, will be? This streak could go on for a long time to come.

          • rkmid71

            NCAA tournament will be a challenge. They need to stay or get fully healthy. As a freshman, I don’t think Bent has had quite the experience that Dangerfield has (or Auriemma doesn’t trust her as much) …not in a close, meaningful game like that. But based on how she played a couple games ago, I would bet she gets a lot more time in remaining reg season games — they’ll want to get starters more rest before post season tourneys.Somebody said the Duke transfer is awesome. I liked that she was right in the midst of all that celebration, part of the team despite being ineligible to play still.. .

          • Steglitz49

            Seeing that Alex does her best when the chips are down, like Charlotte Kalla, let’s wait for the Champions League games at the end of March.

          • rkmid71

            Agree. AM just got there and just a few games so far. It’s a process. I’m hoping it turns out better than Rapinoe at OL. I expect it will given AM track record and that she seems fit.

          • Steglitz49

            Indeed.

            I get the impression that Alex wants to redeem the time by learning how to be a better flank player and that the Lyon staff are in agreement with this approach. Just like Charlotte learnt to ski classic style so Alex will broaden and hone her repertoire.

          • rkmid71

            Since you are an historian, do you know much about the French club Le Havre beyond what’s on Wiki? I saw that it’s generally considered the oldest club in France, was originally founded by some British expats, and recently built a new stadium. 2nd division men and women I think.

          • Steglitz49

            No. A lot of clubs around the world were started by Englishmen, like AC Milan and Genoa. Barcelona was started by a Swiss businessman.

          • Steglitz49

            There is a lot of news about WoSo in the wires but not all of it is focussed on Alex Morgan and Christen Press.

            To be fair, most sports media on the continent of Europe are focussed on the Alpine and Biathlon (skishooting) World Championships which are under way in St Moritz and Hochfilzen, respectively and once they are over attendance switches to the X-country World Championships in Lahti.

      • The Oracle

        How do you post tweets in comment section??

        • DNG

          just copy and past the tweet’s URL and the tweet will come through Disqus.

      • Breakers fan

        Christmas comes really early! Congrats.

        Just to be clear on play #2: we see the shot in slow motion, so it seems like Morgan has plenty of time to react when she really didn’t. But anyway, looking at it further: It was fired at her knee. I guess the idea is that she should have reacted faster, bent down to have it hit her thigh so it wouldn’t jump off of her so fast. In effect, sort of trapping it, it would have then come down really to right where the keeper was – look at the play. OR the idea is that she should have angled her knee better to cause a different deflection. What’s your guys’ take on what she did wrong and what she should have done better?

        • DNG

          For the one off the knee, she probably didn’t have enough time to get her foot to it. It definitely wasn’t a perfect cross but I think she still should have finished it.

          • Breakers fan

            Can you elaborate on “should have finished it” – done what differently? I named 2 options. I wonder if they practice the art of the knee/shin deflection in practice?
            Good to bring up though the idea of “getting her foot to it” – I agree that that was unlikely that it would have been very tough to do so.

          • DNG

            I think she could still have angled her leg better to turn the ball on goal.

          • Breakers fan

            She definitely could have. Should she have in that amount of time? Who knows? Again, the art of the knee deflection.

          • Steglitz49

            Alex Morgan scored in play in Brasilia. It gave the USWNT the chance of extra time. The fact that the inept referee crew almost robbed Sweden of victory we need not dwell on.

            Alex Morgan is the real McCoy and #1Fan is not.

          • Breakers fan

            Can we say it was a *bad* cross? Oops, sorry, french player and Morgan on the other end. “not perfect” is much better.

          • DNG

            I don’t think the cross was that bad. It got to it’s intended target who was in a prime scoring position. Even if it is knee high I think the forward needs to finish it. Which isn’t to say they will 100% of the time but they should the vast majority.

          • Breakers fan

            A good cross is on the ground or to the head, not the knee/shin. Not terrible as it got to her but it put Morgan in a tough position is all I’m saying.

          • #1Fan

            we can agree to disagree. It put her in a less than optimal position, but not tough imo.

          • Breakers fan

            elaborate, please. Why is it not tough to direct a ball pretty precisely with your knee? She did try to turn her leg, it just wasn’t at the right angle in the end.

          • #1Fan

            no need really, we agree to disagree.

          • Breakers fan

            Cool. Agree to disagree. Not saying she couldn’t have scored. I think it was mostly down to luck -she tried to angle it towards goal with her knee. It didn’t go in.

          • Steglitz49

            Why agree to disagree? I get no evidence that #1Fan knows more than I about WoSo. The difference is that he blocks those who disagree with him.

          • Steglitz49

            Maybe you should learn to conceded sometimes because you can’t always be right.

          • DNG

            I think it was a mistake to try and redirect it with her knee. She might not have been able to get her foot to it but she should have gotten her leg up and angled it in a way to turn the ball onto goal.

          • Breakers fan

            First we have the amount of time she had to deal with the ball. Next we have her leg. You’re saying lift the leg up, have it hit the shin bone, which is a smaller surface area than the knee, turn the shin bone towards goal, and that one has a better chance of controlling the ball with the shin bone than the knee. Correct?

          • #1Fan

            if that was Kun Aguero, do you think anyone would be making excuses for him ? or would they be saying he should have buried that? Same with the other chance

          • Breakers fan

            I would describe it in the same way. Don’t know about anyone else.

          • Ethan

            I don’t know. I’m sure fans made excuses for his two five-second angry episodes.

          • #1Fan

            and thats relevant how? if your point is that fans spring to the defense of players they like on teams they support. then Ok?

          • Ethan

            If people can make excuses for those two awful challenges, people would have made excuses for him for not finishing such a chance.

          • #1Fan

            i dont recall anyone making excuses for them. but I still think its an irrelevant debate.

          • Steglitz49

            The real question is if it were Stina Blackstenius or Lotta Schelin, what would the outcome have been?

          • DNG

            No. Inside of the leg on the muscle and I agree with #1Fan on this. There is not a single great goal scorer who wouldn’t be expected to finish that.

          • Breakers fan

            Soft part of the leg. Not a lot of rebound off of that. I’ve come to the same conclusion. We difer on the *amount* of criticism deserved. I have nothing further to add. I don’t care what anyone else would say about it. I make up my own mind.

          • #1Fan

            which is your right. and I respect it. i have not seen the whole play develop, but you cannot discount the interplay between teammates. she does seem rather close to the crosser and is that becasue her run is ill timed? Did the crosser take too long? there are all sorts of factors that can lead to the chance being harder to convert than it was.

            As her team get used to the runs she makes Im sure she will score goals.

          • DNG

            Don’t need much of a rebound. She was 3 yards out with the keeper out of the play. You are of course entitled to your opinion on this. What percentage of the time do you think a forward should put that chance away since you think I am being unduly harsh?

          • Breakers fan

            I think its 90% luck. meaning: the striker has really nothing to do with it. I think the striker would try as Morgan did – to move her leg towards goal and that the deflection’s nature is pretty much completely out of her hands. So however often luck goes the player’s way is how often the ball scores and is largely separate from a skills consideration. My opinion. I know you difer about it -that she should have known to quickly get her leg up so that it would hit off the muscle next to her shin bone and that that can be controlled pretty well.

          • DNG

            I don’t really understand what you mean by 90% luck. How often would you expect one of the worlds best strikers to convert this exact chance? 50 out of 100 times? More? Less?

          • Breakers fan

            How a ball deflects off a knee or shin or soft tissue (muscle) – the direction such a deflection takes, PRECISELY, whether that deflection goes towards an open part of the net or off the post as it did here or even wide of the goal — I think is, as I wrote, 90% out of the control of the striker. I think the striker basically does what Morgan did – tries to angle the cross towards goal with her knee or whatever is your chosen body part. I don’t think players have enough experience with deflections off of these parts of the body to be able to control them with any kind of accuracy or certainty. Thus my use of the word luck and not being able to say how many times they go in. I’ll go with “Morgan got unlucky here”.

          • DNG

            I don’t share your assertion that what happens after a striker makes contact with the ball is out of their control but thanks for your explanation.

          • Ethan

            I don’t think the mistake was anything regarding how she tried to get the ball into the net. The mistake was expecting the goalkeeper to collect the ball/not expecting the ball to get to her. In my opinion, that’s what causes the last ditch attempt to score a goal there. I personally think DNG and #1Fan are being overly harsh on Morgan here, but any criticism has to focus on Morgan expecting the ball to get to her. If she did, then she would have adjusted her body into a better scoring position.

          • #1Fan

            Have you read the context? She missed more than one chance.

          • Ethan

            Okay? I’m clearly only talking about the second chance shown.

          • #1Fan

            which is to look at ti out of context inmho. She had a few chances of differing quality and difficulty. She missed them all. I probably have dwelled too much on the one chance

          • Ethan

            The other chances don’t affect and shouldn’t affect how I analyze the “quality and difficulty” of this chance though.

          • Steglitz49

            Careful, now, because if you do not concede to #1Fan, he simply blocks you. He can’t cope with disagreement let alone acknowledge that he may be in the wrong.

          • HOFCToDi

            Christen Press has yet to even catch up to Abby Wambach.

            BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

            USWNT 2013-2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
            Lloyd – 11 (too many to list)
            Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRA x 2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
            Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
            Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
            Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
            Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
            Heath – 2 (JPN, CAN)
            Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
            Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)
            Horan – 2 (CAN, JPN)

            Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

          • #1Fan

            feel free. this debate arose out of my assertion that she is not an efficient finisher. This particular chance is being debated I guess.

          • DNG

            It’s difficult to know for sure unless you asked Morgan if her reactions were definitely due to her not expecting the ball which is why I didn’t mention it. I don’t think it’s at all unreasonable to expect a top goal scorer to put the chance away most of the time which is really the point I was trying to make.

          • AlexH

            I agree DNG. Goal scorers get the lion’s share of the accolades so it is perfectly OK to have high expectations on plays such as this.

          • Breakers fan

            Appreciate the different view. I guess what I would ask would be “if she had expected the ball to get to her what would she have done differently? What would we have seen in that very short amount of time” The crosser is close to Morgan and we’re watching it in slow motion in this replay. This happened quickly. My read of Morgan’s body language isn’t so much that of surprise but rather “how do I deal with a ball hit at knee level?”

          • Ethan

            Well, that was my thinking on first view, and I still kind of have that thinking. However, on second viewing, the ball comes in slightly behind her, and that seems to unsurprisingly throw her off. So, she has to deal with the ball at knee level and stop her momentum and move in the opposite direction to get the ball on target. Maybe the criticism then is she should have held her run a little more, but if the ball had been fizzed across the box and had required a sliding finish, then she would have been criticized for not being more aggressive. Either way, this was far from a sitter for me. The first chance DNG showed though was.

          • Breakers fan

            You went in more depth than I did – nice job. I will watch it again and refer to your post. I think it’s a very tough finish, relying predominantly on how a ball deflects off of a knee.

            The first one I largely agree but am a bit less critical. I see a player I didn’t see before running into the picture who may have stopped the shot to the far post, and you then have the keeper and a player on the right post who would have moved if the ball had come that way. That’s 3 defenders at left, center and right. Should have scored but perhaps not as simple as on first glance.

          • DNG

            I think you’re over analyzing here and what’s your definition of a sitter?

          • Ethan

            Overanalyzing? Seriously? You and Breakersfan exchanged several comments regarding the play. Agree to disagree.

            Well, people say a sitter is a chance that a player should have definitely (99+%) finished. Subjective at times though. I did say the first chance you posted was a sitter. Do you ask everyone about their definition of a sitter? (Rhetorical question.)

          • DNG

            Your first comment was that to the tune of: If she had expect the pass then she would have had enough time to deal with it. You even said that you still somewhat believe that after your second viewing. If that’s what you believe why go further into it. That’s where the mistake happened. Whether or not the run was perfectly timed doesn’t really factor in for me because ultimately the cross was completed into a prime scoring location.

            Are definitions of sitter differ. Also, I do not consider the other chance to be a sitter by your definition(99%+). It’s not even a sitter by my definition(90%+) The keeper and the 2 defenders were in decent position to cut off a portion of the goal and did. I would consider this chance to be not as good as the other play where the keeper or defenders were no factor at all.

          • #1Fan

            for me its not really about the subjective definition of a sitter. In fact analyzing the individual chances is something I should not have been drawn in to. My point is , she played, she got herself into some prime scoring positions and her conversion rate was not good.

          • DNG

            You’re right. I only asked Ethan for his definition so I could get a better idea of what he meant by the term but I agree with your overall view.

          • Ethan

            Because I think not expecting the ball to get through and the cross being slightly behind her were both factors in her not scoring. How you view a play can change slightly based on further viewings.

            Yet, Morgan had all the time in the world to pick out her spot, and the ball was delivered to her on a platter. Definitely not the case on the second one. Agree to disagree.

            Note: 99+% is probably too high. I just got the impression that that number would be more appropriate since you mentioned in your first post that she should have scored on both and you’re fairly adamant that she definitely should have scored on the second one.

          • DNG

            Sure it’s fair to say it has an effect on the quality of chance. I think we disagree significantly on how much though and if it’s true that she missed the chance because she wasn’t expecting the cross to get through I’d probably grade it even more harshly since the striker should always be expecting the ball to fall through.

            On the first, She definitely did not have all the time in the world to pick her spot. an extra touch there could easily lead to a lost chance. There was also a defender to block the shot near post and one to block the far post and the keeper was covering the center. Should she have done better? I think so but there is definitely work to be done and in my opinion more than the second. We are at an impasse though.

            I feel pretty confident that a top class striker puts the second away more than 90/100 tries. If that was a French player who had missed that in a major tournament cue all the France gonna France comments.

          • Breakers fan

            I think “maybe should have held her run up a little more” is valid. We’re getting picky here, and exercising a large dose of 20-20 hindsight, look at the replay 10 times luxury, but that would have given her maybe 1 or 2 feet more space.If she had done that….how would the play have been different? The ball still would have arrived at the same, knee level, she would have just been slightly further back. Not sure how that would have increased her chances. Maybe…..she could have bent down a little and trapped it off her thigh, but again there would have then been that flying goalkeeper right there who may have, probably would have scooped the ball up after the trap and before Morgan could get a traditional leg/foot shot off. So I don’t really think that would have altered the play much, made scoring much easier.

          • Steglitz49

            Indeed they are.

            This commentator gets the impression that neither has played high speed soccer. Armchair Monday morning QBs spring to mind, whatever the WoSo equivalent is?

          • Breakers fan

            Certainly it would be impossible to do, but a history of the knee deflection towards goal would be an interesting video compilation.

          • #1Fan

            did it have to be her knee or was that the option she chose ? It being portrayed as if the ball just hit her and thats that. Would be better to look at how other players have dealt with balls at that height and pace.

          • Breakers fan

            I named 2 other options above. Pick the one you think she should have done.

          • #1Fan

            its a pointless debate. the option she chose did not work. thats that.

          • Breakers fan

            It did not work. It’s then the amount of criticism she deserves.

          • rkmid71

            Not to beat a dead horse, but I agree about the cross. It’d be nice to see another angle, but it looks to me that anything on ground or lofted or softer I think GK or defender blocks. It was the speed and bend that got the cross to its target.

        • mockmook

          The play is very deceptive because of the slo mo

          It appears she had almost no chance.

          I think my instinct would be to hop or lift a leg and try to cushion it down and hope I can get to the rebound (there looks to be no way/time to do a good trap — nor a good shot).

          These people you’re arguing with are nuts.

          • DNG

            Here’s the video posted above with timestamped at the time of the goal. Needless to say, even in real time, I disagree with you

            https://youtu.be/AlDCXUzpKxM?t=4920

          • mockmook

            Thanks!!!

            But,I still don’t see how she was supposed to do anything meaningful with that ball — again, hope to deflect it in or hope to cushion it down/nearby.

            Someone spoke of baseball. To me this is the equivalent of swinging at a curve — sure, sometimes you hit a homerun, but usually you hit a dribbler or a foul ball (assuming you make contact).

          • DNG

            As far as baseball comparisons go I would actually compare it to bunting a much bigger ball as oppose to a full swing since she was so close to goal. I think she should just make solid contact and use the momentum of soccer ball to redirect it towards goal or as you said try to control it. If she had taken “full swing” going for a volley that would have been a much tougher finish.

            The more I look at it the more I think Ethan was right in his original analysis. Morgan doesn’t look like she’s expecting the cross to get through and it surprises her when it does.

          • DNG Patrol

            Please name a few players who meet your impossible standards, who always do what you think they should do.

          • RealityDNG#1Fan

            Christen Press

          • HOFCToDi

            DNG can’t handle the international incompetence of one Christen Press.

            Christen Press
            2016 Summer Olympic Games
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 SheBelieves Cup
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press
            2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
            Knockout Stage
            Goals – 0, Assists – 0

            Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • HOFCToDi

            DNG can’t handle the international incompetence of one Christen Press.

            Calendar Year 2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Goals Scored
            Christen Press – 0

            Calendar Year 2016
            FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
            USWNT Assists Provided
            Christen Press – 0

            Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

            4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
            78 caps
            2 head coaches

            Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

            garbage time
            prima donna
            selfish shot hog
            tomato cans

          • mockmook

            Bunt/swing/whatever it was just an analogy.

            But, yes, bunt seems more appropriate. And bunts mostly go astray.

          • mockmook

            Even with a bigger ball, there would be a very small contact area for error here (using a non ideal “bunting” surface) and little to no time to get precision.

          • DNG

            Sure but that’s true of whenever you attempt a one time finish. If the contact isn’t solid and square you get what happened. I think the time is the part that we see differently and is kind of difficult to evaluate from a computer. If she has enough time to judge the ball and get her foot to it, it’s a sitter to me even knee high. If it get’s to her too fast for her to react it’s as Breakers fan says all down to luck. I admit that it’s impossible for me to know for sure but my first thought is that Morgan did have enough time and this should have been pretty routine. I could be wrong of course but that’s where I’m at right now.

          • DNG

            And I also think you’re right about her being offside.

          • DNG

            I think it’s pretty close to the line where you would expect a player to be able to react so the very polarizing responses are understandable. I suppose you’re with Ethan though in thinking the other chance was the better of the two?

          • mockmook

            The other chance was better executed?

            Yes — but the plays are so different I don’t see any value in comparing them.

          • DNG

            Fair enough.

          • Breakers fan

            Agree about the offsides part. Definitely do not agree about her not expecting it. Look at Morgan right before the cross is delivered – she’s clearly calling for the ball. Her arms are out and stay out and she keeps looking at the crosser. Someone not expecting a pass wouldn’t have her arms out and would look away. I haven’t changed my view of the play. The ball is *fired* at her knee. You don’t have time to knowingly adjust your knee into some angle you know will work. The best you can do is move it slightly and hope for the best – which she did. After the play — where we are – we can work backwards and think “since it didn’t work she must have done something wrong” but that’s “fool’s good” so to speak .

            You can ONLY analyze a play by putting yourself, as best you can, into the mind and body — realistically — of the player *at the time of the play*. You can’t work backwards and knowing what you know after the play say what she did was wrong and should have been different because you NOW know the angle of her knee wasn’t optimum. If I don’t respond anymore it’s because I’ve said all I have to say about this play. I do not expect you to change your mind.

          • DNG

            Ethan’s original point, unless I am misrepresenting it, was not that Morgan was not expecting the cross, but that she wasn’t expecting the cross to pass the keeper who had dived out for the ball.

            The essential point we are debating is whether or not Morgan has enough time, after the cross is made, to adjust her leg to redirect the ball to the goal. I happen to think she does. Mockmook, yourself and others do not. It’s okay that we disagree on this but I don’t think we can take this debate any further than we already have. In my opinion, the cross in real time appears slow enough for Morgan to play the ball with something other than her knee. Could I be wrong, sure. The basis for my opinion is similar plays I have seen with imperfect crosses.

            “You can’t work backwards and knowing what you know after the play say what she did was wrong and should have been different because you NOW know the angle of her knee wasn’t optimum.”

            If I had known she was going to use her knee prior to the chance I would have said that the knee is a difficult part of the body to control the ball with. I think she should have and could have controlled it with a different part of her body and that has been my view from the beginning.

            Since we both think that she was offside, I think we can at least agree that she should have timed her run better. The timing of her run likely effected the chance on goal too.

            If you don’t respond again thanks for the cordial discussion(mostly):)

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks for your views. We do disagree. She does try to adjust by moving her leg, She did not have enough time to do that with any certainty that her precise movement would assure a goal. To me it’s not really even controversial but to each his own. I guess you’ve seen a good number of plays wherein crosses are fired at knees from close range and players maneuver their bodies KNOWING that the movement they make in that .3 seconds is the one that will re-direct the ball in a way they foresee with some exactitude. I’ll take your word for it that you have a backlog of such plays in your viewing experience. As is the norm in our debates your expectations (with Morgan at least) I think are unrealistic, excessively demanding. I look forward though to those precise standards being applied to each player in the world as we go forward. Please make a point – to show you have no bias or ill-will towards Morgan — to post videos of Press errors. Sorry if I’m being testy – this play just seems really clear to me in the interpretation. Evidently it is not.

          • DNG

            Usually my criticism of Press is not needed here. That doesn’t mean I think she or any other player is perfect for that matter. She missed what I believed to be a guaranteed goal in the NWSL semifinals last year. That was way worse. There were already so many people criticizing her after the match that I didn’t feel the need to pile on. To sort of reign in my criticism of Morgan a bit I want to acknowledge that all forwards miss chances and I don’t expect hem to make all of them. That would be unrealistic. In this situation I believe she happened to miss 2 great chances. Again big picture, sure, it’s only one match. But with Morgan I think it’s fair to say that she hasn’t been a particularly great finisher over the last 2 years or think that the team should explore other options.

            I hold pretty critical views of all players. I’ve criticized Ohai, Johnston, Sauerbrunn, Leroux, Brian, Sonnett, Horan, and Heath on occasion but it’s true I haven’t done so anywhere near as frequent as I have with Morgan, Lloyd or even Dunn. I think some of that is due to the strong support of those players from commenters here and the rest due to myself enjoying a good debate.

          • Breakers fan

            Thanks for that. Only thing that bothered me was calling this “missing a great chance.” It was not missing a great chance. How about altering the focus, which I predict you would be doing if the players here were reversed: “The crosser missed a great chance to get the ball to Morgan’s feet or head.” Not happening here.
            Of course Press’s NWSL semi miss was about one million times worse than this but as I said at the time and you probably did too – she helped a lot in getting them there with her other goal – a play in which Casey Short could be said to be the biggest star. But I too moved on from that miss – it just showed she’s human, susceptible to nerves. I said afterwards that Press has not choked, or however you want to describe it – in all her other multitudes of goals. Each one requires focus. She maintained composure in all of those.

          • #1Fan

            DNG and I are very similar in this. I dont think that there is meaningful separation between any of the forwards ON the field but in terms of popularity off it, the chasm is vast. That fact has always led me to point out Morgans flaws because very few others do. I too like a debate as long as it reamins relatively civil.

            i feel that Morgans popularity has led people to elevate her to a level ON the field that I think she reached in 2012 and has not come close to since

          • Breakers fan

            Should address one point that I didn’t. First – the attempt to get into Morgan’s head and decide first if she was even thinking about the keeper and second what her thinking was about that is of course pure speculation, a big reach. I think she was focused on the ball. You can’t get look 2 ways at once though maybe she had some inkling from peripheral vision of the keeper coming out in the again, .2 or .3, or .4 seconds in which this all occurred. Let’s say you’re right – that she thought the keeper would get to the ball – which is very debatable in this span of time – then that would have been a reasonable thought. Here is a way you could test this – but even this test wouldn’t be good enough. Have someone fire a ball at your knee from that distance and try to re-direct it precisely. The reason it would be that great a test is that *you* would know it’s being directed at your knee. Morgan had no idea it would arrive there or how quickly.

          • rkmid71

            Might be an agility thing, reaction time, expect the unexpected. What she did nearly worked and she got herself into a good spot…even though it looked offside. She needs to see some go in though to get the karma going. I’m hoping the communication and relationship with teammates is good.

          • Breakers fan

            To think that Alex Morgan doesn’t have good reaction time, way above average fast-twitch muscles is ridiculous to me. It’s the play itself. A ball is fired at her..knee…from close range. That’s a supremely hard thing to deal with in soccer. Try it sometime, but, again, you would know it’s coming which makes it totally different, not a valid comparison or test. I would say the knee is the absolute *worst, hardest* place to field a ball. The thigh you can soften the blow, the shin may be low enough where you can get your foot up to bring it down or volley it. I too hope that the communication and relationship with teammates is good – that may be tough if they get hung up on possible compensation differences that bother them. I don’t think it’s guaranteed that all is hunky-dory in that dept. It will depend on the generosity and character of all involved.

          • Steglitz49

            Seeing that Alex, like Charlotte Kalla, is at her very best when it truly matters and the chips are down, we probably have to wait for the Champions League matches at the end of March to pass judgement.

          • Ethan

            Well, upon seeing the whole play, that opportunity was far easier for Morgan than the first one you showed, but not because of the lack of defenders or the goalkeeper. The suggested criticism of Morgan holding her run a little is 100% valid because she was clearly offside on the play. She should have had no problems staying behind the ball before it was played, and if she had done that and the cross was delivered the exact same way, that would have been an open net opportunity for a stooping/diving header. No excuses for Morgan here. Her movement made a very easy chance into a difficult one.

          • DNG

            Thanks for the fair reply and analysis. I agree with your point. I also mentioned this below but I do think perhaps I go caught up getting too into this particular chance during the debate between Breakers fan and myself. Over the course of the season a striker is going to miss some chances for what ever reason. The timing of her runs is something I actually think Morgan can really improve while in France even if she is only there a short time.

          • mockmook

            Assuming the same cross if AM held up her run, I don’t think there is enough time for her to get her head down to the ball.

          • Ethan

            If she holds her run, the cross doesn’t go behind her catching her off guard, and I think she’d have her body oriented in such a way that she can dive/stoop to head the ball in on the same cross. Agree to disagree.

            On further thought, I was considering editing my comment to include Morgan being able to score with any legal part of her body if she had kept onside.

        • mockmook

          Oh, and btw, I think she may have been off-side

          • Breakers fan

            Good observation. You’re right. I added my final thoughts under the new real-time video DNG posted.

      • Breakers fan

        Play #1 – a one-time shot with a keeper there and the right post covered. Her non-dominant foot. Still, I agree, a poor finish, but not a total gimmee on the one-time aspect of a sort of bouncy ball hit solidly. But yes, not a good finish.

      • DNG Watch

        Of course, Morgan should have scored. As if it was easy. As if pre-ordained. Real life doesn’t work like that.

  • Bruce

    Match replay just posted on YT.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AlDCXUzpKxM

    • Juanaareynolds

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  • A_Dog_Without_A_Clutch

    Just curious but was this the player alignment?

    [url=http://sharemytactics.com/82799/][img]http://sharemytactics.com/82799/CLFC-Prov-formation-tactics.png[/img][/url]

  • wosofan

    Alex Morgan missing chances for her club team? Why am I not surprised.

  • AlexH

    So it seems yet again that US players have problems finishing. Yes I know it was 1 pre-season game and second hand information, but that is plenty good for the internet.
    I wish we had just 1 ruthless finisher on out team. I thought Dunn was it but she seems to have caught the disease.

    • DNG

      I think almost all of the US forwards are volume shooter not great finishers. They score a lot because they get on the end of a lot of chances which is a skill in it of it self and a byproduct of playing for a good team.

      • AlexH

        Alex used to be completely ruthless in 2011 and 2012. One shot one goal, or so it seemed.

        • Steglitz49

          And also a header. Alex’s most famous goal is a header.

        • ARED

          She would still have phases then. But the team played differently, and I believe opponents have become much more organized in these past 4 years.

          And most of all, I think the USA midfield has been poor and as a team they often do not seem to know how to play. I hate to blame everything on Wambach and Lloyd, but I do bet that if they had both been dropped in 2012, we would have seen the other players thrive in an altered system which suited them better. (Aside from injury issues of course).

      • ARED

        I agree, but is this not true of almost all WoSo forwards?

        • DNG

          I’d say most but like all things there are degrees to this. Press I would say is a more efficient finisher than Dunn or Morgan. Horan and Long were good for Portland last year and Long was also pretty great the year before. Kim Little is a wonderfully efficient and effective player.

          • ARED

            I agree. In NWSL Long has been a great finisher when it comes to efficiency and scoring goals out of seemingly nowhere. Little is efficient in every way, and Williams and McDonald were pretty impressive last year as well.

            I think it is different to judge who *can* finish in a given manner, and how efficiently they can. If a team creates a ton of great chances, you may just want someone to finish it into the goal. If you create half-chances you may need someone with a bit more imagination. And if you don’t create much at all, you may needs someone who can break a defense AND finish, all by herself. Press may fit the second description best, and Morgan the third. But the first description is where I don’t see many Van Nistelroy type “poachers”. But I believe all the USA forwards are actually pretty good at all three descriptions, especially compared to the WoSo normal levels. Spain or England would love to have any of them.

          • DNG

            I agree on Williams and Mcdonald. I’m kind of sad that Mcdonald hasn’t gotten a real shot to play for the NT before. Her finishing has also been hit or miss but every time I watch her she seems to be able to get on the end of chances and position herself very well. I said below that sometimes I overvalue efficiency in lieu of the ability to get on the end of lots of chances. That ability is also a very important skill that sometimes is lost on people(myself included). Ideally you want the right mix in a striker who will score more goals than whoever is not chosen.

            I’m not sure I’d agree that Morgan can break down a defense all by herself. I think she can break down a specific defense with a good ball in behind. That probably needs to be a great ball if the defense that is giving up the space is solid and athletic. Griege Mbock for example is a CB who I think may be able to not only match Morgan for pace but is stronger. Tobin might be the only player on the roster who can break down any defense on her day but I would not rely on her to finish and her final balls are a bit hit or miss.

          • ARED

            Yes, for me McDonald is not really among the top USA strikers, but she deserves some credit for what she has done and is a strong NWSL player. Williams we will see, perhaps she can play a role for the USA, but there is so much competition for only 1-2 places (based on Ellis’ use of forwards).

            I refer to Morgan’s career more than this specific moment, but I do think her mix of power, pace, and (sometimes) her precision, have been almost unplayable for defenders, and made the difference in some very very big matches. It’s true that now some teams are trying to play like Sweden did, and also some individual defenders are improving to being able to cope better, but for me Morgan is the forward who puts the most fear into the opponent from 2012 or so until now.

            (And if you want to break two waiting lines of 5 I think Heath is as good as it gets for the USA, and again I’m not really sure which players in the world are better. Those are some of my favorite players though -Heath, Vero, Marta, Miyama, Holiday, Rapinoe, etc -and a new wave is coming).

          • DNG

            Maybe. For me the NWSL is as good a test as any for the USWNT players and many of those matches are far more competitive than most USWNT matches. The main differences I see between NWSL teams and top international sides is organization and of course some talent disparity. I don’t think NWSL teams are too far behind once you get past the top ten or so though and a team like Lyon or Wolfsburg is arguably as good as any NT.

            As far as Williams an Mcdonald go. I see Williams as a very similar player to Morgan with possibly more pace. My only question is whether she can start finishing more consistently and how she does against the best NTs and their defenses. She’s struggled a bit with her finishing but I expect her to do fine. I kind of feel like Mcdonald is underrated by many. I do think she’s a very inconsistent finisher but she’s a good target, can hold up play, and is very good at positioning herself around the box. I think she would have performed fine if given a shot earlier in her career although it’s true I expect any starting striker for the USWNT to be able to score goals and they mostly have.

            It’s not just teams that sit deep like Sweden that shut down Morgan last year but solid defensive teams like England, France(she got one very late at SBC but they were very good), and Canada. Of those team only Canada sat deep and absorbed pressure. Right now, I’m not saying there is definitely a better US forward than AM but I don’t think she is definitely better than Dunn, Press or even a player like Williams either. I suppose we’ll see how ellis views the competition at forward this year.

          • ARED

            I think NWSL is the best test to show a player should get a chance with the NT. But for me it’s only after a few games at this level you start to see what they can offer, and the USA seems very intent on not allowing new players to get this chance (but some have lately). I meant to imply that McDonald should have been included more and sooner, though it always would be tough with so many good options. She should have gotten 2-3 games though, just like Press and Leroux should have gotten several games playing with Morgan when the team was instead focused on Wambach and Co. creating “legacies”.

            I thought Morgan was good at the SBC, but the team was up and down as usual, especially the midfield, as usual. When Pugh was put into the CAM role that goal happened very quickly -and again, I think Morgan’s record against the best teams is about as good as you could ask (both in goals and all around play). It’s only speculation, but my opinion is that all forwards would perform better if Lloyd were gone (ie, if Ellis used her players better, and had a better system/style of play). If they did, I imagine Morgan and Press would challenge each other and take turns as the “best” forward. Press may surpass her, but it’s impossible to say for sure. I would been playing both together for the past 4 years and then we’d have a lot more information to decide on….lol. And all the others could be getting occasional chances to show they can challenge those 2, who seem to be the first 2 for most people.

            And I agree many clubs are better than T&T or Haiti, and that is why league play is a huge benefit to WoSo. But I judge players for the top international teams most of all by how they perform against the other top nations, and in the biggest games. Some players fit better in league play, and others in international. You have to see them to know, but it’s up to the manager to choose which ones to see, and in which roles….

          • ARED

            For example, I think Dunn should have been on the WC15 roster, and her performance in NWSL was admirable and proved that fact. But, it still did not mean as much for me as Morgan’s performance in the WC. Morgan was hurt and missed half of it, but still was there and helped change the play of the team when she returned, and then made the difference in maybe the toughest moment against Germany when perhaps they should have lost.

            It’s not Dunn’s fault of course, she did all she could. Just as Press and Leroux did at the WC, and even ARod was great as well, except for one big miss. So I think those players -at least some of them -proved they deserved more opportunity, but I cannot say Dunn dominating the weakened NWSL means she would have made a similar positive impact in the WC. But it does mean we should see her given more chances.

          • DNG

            Morgan’s performance at the WC was only okay for me. She was still really struggling to finish chances at that time and I’m not totally convince that another could not have done better. Credit to her for playing well enough for the team to win though along with the others but I honestly believe that if the team had to switch Morgan for Press they would have been fine. Obviously the best solution would have been to just bench Lloyd like any other manager would have done. I wouldn’t discount that Dunn might have been able to perform similarly to Morgan in the WC as well.

          • ARED

            Well I do agree also that another forward (or possibly 4 others…lol) could possibly have done the job as well. Again, I believe the USA has a lot of talent and forwards are one thing they are not lacking. In a “normal” world, I would have loved to see whether Press could overtake Morgan as the “top” forward, and ideally they’d have a thriving partnership regardless of who was better at the moment.

            I like Dunn, but not so much as a true striker or forward, although she certainly would score for USA against many teams. But I think she’s better playing behind someone. In the USWNT world though, these “normal” discussions and theories seem irrelevant and become only speculation, which is sad.

          • Steglitz49

            Let’s wait and sea how Chelsea plays Crystal and Man City Carli. Lyon seems to have Alex on the left wing or as one of two strikers, possibly as a supersub.

          • DNG

            I partially agree about Dunn I don’t really think she is a lead the line type of striker. I don’t really think that Press or Morgan are either but of the three Morgan probably has the strength to cope best in the isolated 4-2-3-1. Probably not as much of a target type player as Horan but I digress. I’m not as high on her playing right below a 9 in that second striker role either I don’t think she has the close control or the ability to move the ball quickly in and out of the most congested area of the pitch. Her passing is the final third for me isn’t good enough if you’re looking for more than crosses from the wing. I happen to believe Dunn is an outside back or wing back not a forward. Her finishing and passing isn’t really consistent enough for me but I hope she’ll prove me wrong.

          • DNG

            I think in many ways the NWSL tests the top players as well as the prospective NT players. We get to see how some of them are in less than ideal situations(Morgan in Orlando) and others in situations that benefit them(Arod in FCKC). The problem for me with using 2-3 games to see with what a player can bring to a team is that it’s a very small sample size and the competition the US plays is highly variable. It’s very difficult to get accurate reads from those conditions.

            Morgan was okay for me at SBC. It’s certainly not her fault that the team had a difficult time moving the ball back to front but I don’t always feel that she works back to the ball enough and when she does the ball almost always goes backwards. I don’t have an issue with passing backwards to find different passing angles but Morgan does it because she does not have the close control to turn her defender or strength to hold up the ball. This is less of an issue if Lloyd is not on the field but it is still a limitation. I think Morgan’s performance at Orlando says a lot about her ability to beat teams by herself without a good team to feed her chances.

            I am probably biased as a league first person but I’ve always believed that you can tell a lot more about a player from a year of league performances than you can for a one month single elimination tournament. The difference in WoSo is that the NT are actually better than almost all of the club teams right now with is not the case in the men’s game. Still I think how a player performs in the NWSL can give us some very good indicators of what they can do on the NT

          • ARED

            Here I also agree we can learn different things from different settings, and league play will show more (if there are more matches/minutes). USA players actually have not all spent too much time in NWSL so far though, and I believe the instability and variables suggest a need for a calm mind about any learnings. For example, FCKC went from top to bottom, and we can learn from this, but because the league is so variable and their whole roster changed, should we really accuse say Groom or Sauerbrunn for having a “bad” season? We can get some indicators as you say, especially if we watch with a good eye and also understand the mix of the micro and macro for players/clubs/leagues/etc, but really it’s still a very complex picture and compared to more established sports it isn’t always as clear what part of the picture we are looking at, or what lenses are tinting our view.

            Also -when talking of the USWNT, I think you can value different things than when considering other nations or a specific club. We know USA will always be in games, always have a lot of the ball, and have trouble losing no matter what lineup and tactics they use. So given this you may value the abilities of “luxury” players a bit more since the team can compete regardless and the luxury players can offer ways to raise the team’s level “top 4” to “champion”. Like Benzema and CR at Madrid -I do not believe either would be so impressive if they were playing for Getafe, or even Atleti. But since you know they will be on the ball in good positions and in the box over and over, you may prefer them to players like Bale or Morata, who may fit better in a more modest side who don’t always see as much of the ball. If Arjen Robben played for Ghana instead of Holland we may see his play change a lot, and we might value him differently. My “defending” of Morgan is really just trying to make the point that she is a good player and fits the USA pretty well based on 6 years of history -but it’s also truly disturbing we haven’t seen more forwards not named Morgan, Wambach, or Lloyd over those same 6 years though, so the picture is quite tainted.

          • Steglitz49

            What we learnt from OG-16 was that it is still possible for small countries to have a place on the WoSo NT stage even if their club games suffer from lack of funds. Granted it is the number of registered players that count but also Canada benefits from their lasses coming up the US college route. If Mexico could get its skates on, the MWNT could be a force too.

            The difference between Sweden and Norway compared with the US is the strength in depth of the talent pools. In WC-15 Norway was without Caroline Graham Hansen and now in Euro-17 Sweden has to manage without Sofia Jakobsson. In the US, each position is oversubscribed 5-fold if not 10-fold. When the minnows have their full complement, they can be hard to beat.

            This year we will get an inkling of how Alex, Carli, Crystal and Savannah will perform playing with other top players to whom we can throw in assorted Canadians like Kadeisha and Ashley for good measure.

          • DNG

            FCKC actually managed to right the ship but the damage done early in the season and finish mid table. Losing their top forward and top attacking mid was devastating to say the least. Shea Groom played about as well as I could expect her too but she just wasn’t enough over the course of the season. I expect them to be back to the top this year with assuming Arod and Leroux come back fit and ready to play. Arod will likely fill that second striker role unless a trade happens.

            I get what you’re saying about Ronaldo and Benzema but I think you’re undervaluing both a little. I admit to not watching much of Real this year but Benzema has always struck me as a striker who adds value to the team outside of goals. He’s good at holding up the ball and distributing from the forward position to go along with the goals. Looking at the stats it looks like he’s having a pretty tough year thought. Ronaldo I think would score goals wherever he played. He might not do much else but I have no doubt that he would still be very valuable. I’m not sure I totally agree about Morata(not that he isn’t a very good player) but I see what you mean about Bale. Bale might have been the most impressive player at the Euros for me last year. His performances for Wales were nothing short of sublime

    • ARED

      “…but that is plenty good for the internet.” -Ha, nice one!

      My comment would actually be: But who are the ruthless finishes anywhere in WoSo? Even in the Men’s game, all players will be up and then down in consistent finishing. But in the women’s game, I do not see many to be honest. I believe many of the typical players in France or Europe are a bit more consistent at a range of skills but dominant in none, where the American-type players (including maybe Sinclair and De Vanna) are great in some ways, but not always consistent or well-rounded.

      But while Le Sommer or Schelin or whichever younger strikers you like are often lauded, I think they also can struggle. Watching the World Cup in 2015 for example, I thought there was significant proof that finishing in WoSo was a widespread area for growth. I also, in a related way, believe that turf fields play a negative role in this.

  • Guest

    I’m sure Christen Press would of scored – EQ Logic
    She’s better looking and I want to sleep with her, oh wait she’s dating Tobin and is gay.

    • quest

      haha. Yeah they always hating on Alex and Crystal. Like Christen never misses chances. The guys here and obsessed with her. They think she will give them a date even though she is gay.

      • #1Fan

        its a bit sad that any objective comment on Morgan is turned in to a Press vs Morgan. Im not in that Club. Im commenting on Morgan full stop.

        • Reality

          Rather than wallow in this troll mire, I thought you might find this interesting article on USSF’s hire of James Bunce, a top sports scientist in England’s Premier League…

          “In England, Bunce also was a pioneer of so-called biobanding, an organizational system that groups young players according to their level of physical development, rather than their birth year. The theory was that many talented young players were being cast aside in the development process because they were not as physically mature as their contemporaries.

          Bunce said his “light-bulb moment” came during his years working at Southampton’s academy, when he watched a 14-year-old Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain dropping out of favor because he was being outmuscled by bigger players. Southampton took the unusual step of holding Oxlade-Chamberlain back a year until he became bigger and stronger. The result? A first-team debut at the age of 16, followed by a transfer to the powerhouse club Arsenal the following season.”

          https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/12/sports/soccer/united-states-soccer-performance-boost-english-premier-league.html?_r=0

          • #1Fan

            Ty. will def read

          • oldknees

            This is a huge problem: Talent selection versus talent identification. Real talent identification in children is both an art- in assessing the way a child “caresses” (the word used by a Barcelona scout regarding how he picks kids) the ball and a science- in understanding the biology and its variance in child development.

            I read and saw videos in another thread about a kid who has been excluded in YNT camps whom some think should be a regular (if any kid at 14-16 should ever be a “regular” which is up for debate) I know that kid and she is a very late bloomer. She probably has grown 8 inches or so in the last few years and has always looked years younger. That may be a factor in her failure to identify: late to the party.

            Those late bloomer kids can easily be excluded from the most optimal development opportunities based on delayed relative physical development. Contrast her to Rachael Jones, referenced on occasion by #1fan, who has been her current height probably for 6 years now. She was huge and dominant at u12 when the YNT “identified” -I would argue actually “selected” her talent, Now shortish at 5’2″ish and last off the u17 roster. Meanwhile she ate up a huge amount of USSF resources, but she is on the u18 roster so all will not be lost in the cost of her development – or will it?

            Nice academic article also:

            http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1260/1747-9541.5.4.571

          • #1Fan

            good points. begs the question is Jones still “ahead” of the other kids? Is the amount invested to date a big factor in continued investment? if Jones was good enough to be at every camp prior but not good enough for the WC after all this investment, why do the USSF not look at other kids?

          • oldknees

            My opinion is that Rachael Jones is not ahead of the other kids. I think they would have known that if they had brought a wider range of kids into camps against which to hold her abilities up. You also can’t evaluate a new kid in one camp when she has been thrust into that foreign and challenging environment essentially alone. They should be mixing up the rosters, bringing in substantial numbers of newbies at the youngest ages, so that no kid really feels comfortable, Cliques then aren’t as much a factor, and they all can be evaluated on a more even playing field.

            I wish I knew the answer to your last question. I believe you had it right when you said something about coaches trying to protect their jobs by trying to claim success in pushing kids forward. If they put a kid who has eaten up resources out to pasture, maybe they might get called out for wasting money and denying opportunities. The Pinto situation is this mentality taken to the extreme.

          • #1Fan

            is the mentality any different on the Full team? i dont think so. Except teh Full team is protected by CBA. Your point about the environment is another issue I raised wrt the full team. When I hear – she did not excel in camp – as an excuse, I question how comfortable the player was in an environment where you are all fighting for $$$ and you may be trying to get them at the expense of an established players friend. How does that work? There are so many flaws with the NT being a “club:. Those flaws definitely extend to the Youth teams and talent identification.

            I feel there is a group who says that water finds its own level and is quite moderate and a group of very vocal , mostly Club DOCs and coaches, who are very vocal n promoting their own players. In the short term, the latter win. I also think it cost us wrt some of the players who fall by the wayside. The soccer world is quite small and i believe if you polled the DoCs in every area, they can tell you who the players are. I bet there are names on that list who are not in camps

          • oldknees

            I completely agree thanks. It seems in such poor judgement to base an opinion of a player’s quality on such an unnatural an environment as a NT camp. Especially one where your teammates have so much to lose if you happen to succeed. I mean are the coaches really ignorant to that point?

            A player being considered for the WNT (full or youth) should have amassed a body of work and have been judged worthy of a camp participation based on that. In fact shouldn’t a coach be considered a failure if her/she can’t garner a similar performance from a player in camps as she has shown in other venues? I don’t buy that the level is so much greater- speed so much faster,.. I don’t believe that those players currently “in” are uniformly the best we have to offer and hence they aren’t being judged against the ‘best”.

            Your point about the club DOC is very interesting. I bet you would be proven right.

          • #1Fan

            i agree with you. many on here dont. I attribute the added intensity of an NT camp to exactly what I just said – the fear that someone may lose a big paycheck. Im not convinced that fear motivates or promotes better play.

            Your point on body of work is something I also believe in. You need to explain to me WHY players who have succeeded in the NWSL/College/ Club consistently are NOT good enough as opposed to players who have not scaled the same heights ? Saying, well its camp related. I mean wtf does that mean? like you said, if you cannot get a performance out of them , then surely the coaching or the artificial is the issue. The players have clearly performed for other coaches.

            There are some very powerful factions in the womens youth scene. They tend to get what they want at youth level becasue up until now, the US did well enough no matter who was picked. The sad truth is that to date , no one cares enough to stand up and say the emperor has no clothes. YNTs and TopDrawer soccer are used as recruiting tools of the powerful. They are not necessarily a reflection of the best players we have.

          • ARED

            I agree with all you two are saying. I believe that it is an important and undervalued skill/talent to develop young players, both to know who can become the best adult players and how to help them do it. Some have this, but in the USA I see very few in power who I would trust their opinions, compared to say some academies or coaches in maybe Holland or Spain. There you can trust them to take any player, even one who seems like a risk, because they have proven they deserve this trust.

            In absence of this skill or trust in those in control, it must come down to the “body of work” element I think, and certainly there seems to be some big problems in that regard as well in the USA picture -both in the youth systems, but also even the full national teams. f you continue to ignore the top league/club players from even getting called into the national team camps, to give them some friendlies to show whether they can perform “at the highest level”, then you are asking for everyone to “just trust you”. Well, if you win or play well enough the trust may be given, but I believe it is correct in this case to say “the emperor has no clothes”.

            I believe there are some signs of progress in the USWNT -but they had no progress for so long it will take a lot. And while Arena is hardly a new face, he has a track record of picking some good unproven players while also respecting those who have solid, if unspectacular, bodies of work.

          • Steglitz49

            I have long wondered about how big a role subliminal features play in WoSo. It is striking how handsome, winsome and charming young ladies in sport are.

            Interpersonal skills and looks seem to play a bigger role among the lasses than it does for the chaps. This probably starts at and even before puberty.

          • oldknees

            So I don’t get that comment in regards to this issue. Are you saying the androgynous late bloomers at u14/15/16 are being overlooked because a more developed player is physically more attractive? I don’t think that plays into it. I think it’s more that the early developers (RJ) are selected as the “better” players at a moment in time and those selecting talent, an easy task, are not trying to predict a ceiling and thus truly identifying talent, which is much harder. I don’t think you need to add secondary sex characteristics into the discussion

          • Steglitz49

            Your points are well taken but I still fancy the kite that I flew.

            Having heard coaches answer the question about what marked her out as a winner at an early stage they nearly always say “dedicated” or “stubborn” (as in not willing to give up). Likewise when asked to define them in a single word, “stubborn” frequently is used to show that they keep trying till they master the arts.

            The look/personality is a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Confidence breeds confidence and being handsome and winsome and of a cheerful and outgoing disposition at the same time self-effacing and humble makes you confident. You win the marginal points.

            The attractive ones simply get a slight head start by picking up one or two of those “style” points for want of a better word. Of course, what is attractive to one coach may not be it to another but so many of the coaches are men.

          • #1Fan

            the job has to be a combination of

            to identify players with a high ceiling who may have the potential to represent the US at the full NT level.

            to identify kids who have the ability to win games at the Youth world Cups.

            I think more the former than the latter, but would be naive to suggest the latter is not part of it.

            I dont think that the current folks are doing either. There si nothing wrong with projecting elite talent. in the case of RJ i dont think she has ever had elite talent as such, but it was on a RELATIVE basis for all sorts of reasons. Her ceiling is a lot lower( in my opinion) than quite a few players I could name.

          • oldknees

            I agree again.
            For example in the u17 WC USWNT:
            Just picking younger kids doesn’t in fact speak to your insightfullness at identifying talent and projecting a ceiling. Some of those 14 and 15 year olds look to be as physically mature as some of the 16 year olds. The kid in the videos on another thread at 14 looked 11. I didn’t see any kids out there that looked 11. Rachael Jones probably weighted 50 pounds more than that kid at 11 when she was identified. Now that kid is 4 or 5 inches taller and more well rounded even if as you said she needs to work on when to use that skill she possesses and when to play more simple.

            That was the whole point of this topic bio banding and assessing kids against similarly developed players. The 14 and 15 year olds would have been bio banded in an older group i strongly suspect. The video kid in a younger group.

            Do you think that there will be any movement away from the status quo in YNT selection if there are failures in 2019 both in the WNT and YNT world cups? Will JE last long enough for that question to be relevant?

          • #1Fan

            I suspected there was going to be change before the pinto elevation. Now Im not so sure. One point I will make is that just becasue a kid is advanced athletically at a young age does not mean that she will not continue to be athletically elite. the job is to know the difference and believe me it exists. There si difference between size and strength and elite speed and./or quickness. My fear – and I see signs of it – is that the USSF selects away from kids who have elite athletic ability as if that makes them bad. Bale, Ronaldo, Messi etc all have elite quickness and the first 2 also had/have elite speed. Alexis would be another one. From waht i see of Jones, she has good feet, but can no longer create separation she used to basis strength OR quickness. I am sure she aces those camp drills and tests though.

            I think Ellis does see the issues. I believe she is quite good at surrounding herself with some smart people, but I also think she is saddled with some she cannot replace.

          • oldknees

            I completely agree that an athletically advanced kid may continue to advance. Those are special kids who need to be brought up carefully so they develop their whole game and don’t rely too heavily on their elite athleticism to play the game (Alex Morgan). The question is why is a player advanced? Elite Athletism at a moment in time may wane. A physically immature kid may possess elite athleticism if evaluated against kids at similar developmental levels. I think it was obvious with RJ early on why she was advanced. A year into her evaluation the trend should also have been in evidence. To bring her back to England is insane in my opinion.

            I guess the 01s are starting to get ready for the next u17 cycle. Pinto is elevated; so they bring back the same old same olds. Stars, Colorado, Michigan Hawks are not that good. At least 2 of the three mentioned have coaches who have been assistants at ’00 NT camps. Can you say nepotism? I agree it hasn’t mattered and favors called for favors in the past, but these recent failures certainly highlight these illicit patterns.

            I don’t necessarily think the best teams should produce the most YNT players but frequently there are 1 or 2 special players helping that team to success. I think the Solar Chelsea 00 team may be the best now. Where are any SC kids going to England? There are at least a few who have been to YNT camps on their rosters. Guess their coach isn’t on the “in” list.

          • #1Fan

            Cant disagree with anything you have said. Solar have some players who absolutely should be getting a look.

          • Reality

            The academic article you cited certainly raise some interesting issues. The point I found quite significant was this…

            “Technically skilled yet less mature players may be
            overlooked in the selection process due to maturity associated limitations in their physical and functional capacities (i.e., smaller size, or less strength, power and speed). By ignoring the difference in maturity status, coaches may favour players who are more competitive at the time of selection but will reduce the chance to retain the players in the programme with the most potential.”

            I’m afraid that happens all too often in U.S. soccer and it is reflected in the type of players who rise to the top and style of play of the teams at every level including the NT.

        • guest

          that is the standard operating procedure of the alex morgan gang troll brigade. anytime someone is critical of morgan they try to change the subject to christen press.

      • Steglitz49

        Your evidence, please.

      • guest

        she could be bi. you sound like a hopeful lesbian that she will give you a date as well.

      • wosofan

        I thought most of the people here were women.

        • guest

          The Press fans and Carli-h8rs- NYRick, Bruce, DNG, #1Fan seem like men to me. Reality could be male or female not sure

          • guesttt

            newsouth is also obsessed with Press and in denial that she is dating a woman

          • Guest

            Bruce could really be Kaitlyn though.

    • Breakers fan

      Good point in the first sentence.
      Does Press or anyone else for that matter in .3 seconds expertly angle the knee or shin or muscle or whatever body part – the 3rd fingernail on the left hand — so that the ball for sure enters the goal?

      • #1Fan

        Please dont fall for it. have I mentioned Press at all? Its irrelevant to the discussion.

        • Breakers fan

          It’s why I said “anyone” afterward, was just agreeing that it applies to Press too here, in my opinion.

        • Steglitz49

          You pressed your case, did you not?

    • Steglitz49

      Ms Press will, no doubt, let us know any change in her civil status when she deems it appropriate. Till then it behoves commentators to be civil unto her.

      to address your specific worries and concerns:
      — Firstly, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
      — Secondly, she might well let you sleep but I presume that you prefer for both you and her to be awake.
      — Thirdly, is there any objective evidence that either is merry?
      — Fourthly, why would you care?

    • Guest

      Morgan fans’ insecurities always show especially during club season when she gets shown up by Press every single year.

  • guest

    What is the origin of HOFCtoDi’s obsessive hatred of Christen Press? I know he is a Red Stars fan and she frequently carries them on her back. I don’t get it. Does he ever explain in his microsoft word cut and paste rants? He must have the document up on his computer 24/7, ready to go.

    • Guest

      I think it had something to do with that 2015 final where she was embarrassed by ARod

      • HOFCToDi

        Enjoy the “goose eggs”.

        Christen Press
        2016 Summer Olympic Games
        Goals – 0, Assists – 0

        Christen Press
        2016 SheBelieves Cup
        Goals – 0, Assists – 0

        Christen Press
        2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
        Knockout Stage
        Goals – 0, Assists – 0

      • HOFCToDi

        More “goose eggs”

        Calendar Year 2016
        FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
        USWNT Goals Scored
        Christen Press – 0

        Calendar Year 2016
        FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
        USWNT Assists Provided
        Christen Press – 0

    • Steglitz49

      It is a response to the exaggerated, monomanic claims by the Pressgang that they repeated ad nauseam month after month, year after year for the past 4 years.

      The Chief Wizard of the Presseroni has lain low since the debacles in August and September but a few of the others have not yet faced reality.

      • HOFCToDi

        The mother of the Chief Wizard of the Presseroni has revoked his internet access.

  • #1Fan

    really enjoyed the debate yesterday. Interesting to note those that can debate without turning it into something more than an exchange of views. These forums would be very boring if everyone agreed.

    Thank you.

    • Bruce

      I’ve been mostly lurking for the last week, and really have enjoyed the threads. Good content. Great insight.

      • ARED

        Do either of you mind giving a brief summary of the topics, or is it too broad to ask that? Mostly on this thread, or spread around in other older ones?

        • DNG

          Yesterday’s(and somewhat today) debate was mostly about a chance that fell to Morgan in her recent match for Lyon against Juvisy and whether or not it’s reasonable to expect a goal from it. Here’s the chance:

          https://youtu.be/AlDCXUzpKxM?t=4917

          I am of the opinion that Morgan should do better here and some others felt like the circumstances resulted in Morgan doing the best she could.

          • #1Fan

            partly that, also a broader debate about the USWNT forwards and their quality. Also some debate about selection and youth teams

          • ARED

            Sounds good. Nice to see and hear….I seem to find a bit more quality and substance in conversations here as time goes on, which is nice. Not that I am against biased arguing/complaining for a poster’s favorite player and against the ones they hate to an extent, but it’s nice to see more content and conversations which we can all take something from.

            I have enjoyed seeing what each of you have to say here when I’ve seen you posting. ; )

          • ARED

            Thanks for the update and the link!

            For me it’s funny, because I’m pretty certain she was offside in any case…lol. Did anyone else see it like this?

            As far as the finish, well, of course she could do better. I think she saw the space and wanted the ball early and Bremer took a touch and then waited (with no touch, but with extra steps). Morgan made her run already and then was waiting for the ball which is not good, and then Bremer did have to play it quite hard across because the window was closing. Any ball between the shin and hip is difficult, esp on a firm ball behind you (and on the weak foot). I would just say unlucky, especially in a 5-2 it is not a problem, and encourage her to continue fighting and having patience. For a player trying to become adjusted this does not help, but it is a difficult transition to make so it is normal. We saw it as well at the WC 2015, Morgan was coming back too quickly, and allowed herself to feel pressure (from coach, team, media, herself…? I do not say from who….) and she was trying too hard and it did have a small effect on her play I believe.

            For me, the early ball was the best option (and usually is so if the space is there), but Morgan took the space and Bremer was not ready to give the ball, forcing a close decision for offside and then a difficult finish instead of an easy one. The timing of the pass is often more important than the precision, and while it does not totally put blame onto Bremer and off of Morgan, I do believe the pass should come at least one touch sooner if not two, and if so the ball can be on the ground and in front of Morgan in a much bigger window. Maybe they will grow more understanding with each other as well, to know when to expect the ball to be delivered.

          • DNG

            Well this probably isn’t a surprise but your assessment was kinder than mine. Yeah I think she was offside. I think she breaks off the defender well but doesn’t do good enough job holding the line. Bremer should have played the ball a little sooner as well I think she did good enough to get the ball there. I think a top forward should be able to pretty easily handle a ball below the knee. Once it starts riding higher up the leg closer to the hip it does get difficult to control. I saw the placement of this cross as a little higher than the knee so while it is more difficult I didn’t see it as something that should have prevented her from getting a shot on target. I think we kind of settled on that all of that probably doesn’t matter if she times her run better(or if Bremer delivers the ball earlier)

          • #1Fan

            i did write something similar 2 days ago , but I guess it was missed

            which is your right. and I respect it. i have not seen the whole play develop, but you cannot discount the interplay between teammates. she does seem rather close to the crosser and is that becasue her run is ill timed? Did the crosser take too long? there are all sorts of factors that can lead to the chance being harder to convert than it was.
            As her team get used to the runs she makes Im sure she will score goals.

          • ARED

            I think it’s good to mention that point -that sometimes an “easy” chance is not so simple and maybe a miss may be blamed as much on a teammate as the one who misses the finish (I believe). On the couch every chance is easy….but we aren’t doing much to learn/teach/share about the game if we just criticize and say “You blew it!” when someone misses a chance.

            Here we all seem to agree at least that the chance was made tougher either from the time Bremer takes to cross, the early run, or perhaps both, so it allows for some deeper consideration and perhaps growth -which I think is more useful that summarizing it as “Morgan sucks” or “No, she’s the greatest and never makes a mistake”.

          • ARED

            Yeah, my reviews also come more based on the idea of being inside a team or supporting the players, instead of just a removed “yes or no” for if she could score like you hear from the pundits whose job is to say controversial things. In the big picture, I think she’s been a huge player for the USA but should always have to prove she deserves to play over the others -and her injuries and the team’s struggles have made it tougher on her, as well as big improvements in the competition and organization of opponents. But for one play, in a new team, with all the activities off the pitch, if I am the manager I will focus on positivity and patience, and am not too surprised she only hits the post (again).

            (I do think Morgan should have realized she went too early and tried to recover backwards before the ball was already coming. But if I played this pass I would not expect this specific striker to score from it more than maybe 50%. I also know this striker likes open space and to move quickly, and that option was there also). To be honest, it reminds me of the USWNT when one player wants to combine on the ground, and the other runs behind the defenders. Neither is wrong, but if you want to improve it, you must work on this to play together. Bremer is 20 and Morgan is new.

    • HOFCToDi

      Enjoy those “goose eggs”.

      Christen Press
      2016 Summer Olympic Games
      Goals – 0, Assists – 0

      Christen Press
      2016 SheBelieves Cup
      Goals – 0, Assists – 0

      Christen Press
      2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying
      Knockout Stage
      Goals – 0, Assists – 0

    • HOFCToDi

      Enjoy more “goose eggs”

      Calendar Year 2016
      FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
      USWNT Goals Scored
      Christen Press – 0

      Calendar Year 2016
      FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
      USWNT Assists Provided
      Christen Press – 0

    • HOFCToDi

      Enjoy Abby Wambach 5, Christen Press 3.

      http://media.moddb.com/images/groups/1/3/2933/ROFLMAO.png

      USWNT 2013-2016
      FIFA Top 12 Ranked Opponents
      USWNT Goals Scored
      Morgan – 16 (too many to list)
      Lloyd – 11 (too many to list)
      Leroux – 7 (CAN, BRA x 2, CAN, JPN, CAN, FRA)
      Wambach – 5 (GER, AUS, BRA, PRK x 2)
      Rapinoe – 4 (GER, BRA, AUS x 2)
      Press – 3 (AUS, FRA, AUS)
      Holiday – 2 (AUS, JPN)
      Heath – 2 (JPN, CAN)
      Johnston – 2 (FRA, JPN)
      Dunn – 2 (BRA, ENG)
      Horan – 2 (CAN, JPN)

      Note: Only multiple goal scorers listed

      Christen Press is the quintessential international FRAUD.

      4 years (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016)
      78 caps
      2 head coaches

      Christen Press has cemented her legacy with the USWNT:

      garbage time
      prima donna
      selfish shot hog
      tomato cans

      • ARED

        If we ignore Press in the hope to have a real conversation, it seems to me the message here is that Wambach is overrated, Leroux is underrated, and the rest are about what you’d expect.

        Of course, I personally think the better list is to cut it off with maybe the top-8 teams. And, most of all, looking at goal stats only tells a very small part of the story. I wonder how many shots and chances Lloyd and Wambach had compared to the rest…..(let alone who create those chances for them -usually someone else like Holiday, Morgan, Heath, Rapinoe, etc….).

        • Steglitz49

          It is even simpler than so. Marta is the greatest.

        • HOFCToDi

          The last cycle clearly demonstrated that Abby Wambach was in the twilight of her career.

          • ARED

            Too bad no one mentioned this to Jill Ellis until halfway through the World Cup…. ; )

            It’d be interesting to see how the others’ numbers would look if Wambach had been dropped in 2013.

          • HOFCToDi

            Tom Sermanni was the head coach thru the first quarter of 2014.

          • ARED

            Yes, and perhaps he was trying to drop Wambach in phases….?

            That doesn’t change the fact that a very strong argument can be made to say she should have been dropped from the 11 or the entire picture back around 2013 -and if that had happened it’d be interesting to see how the others would have done with the opportunities they would have received.

          • HOFCToDi

            Tom Sermanni refused to handle the “hot potato”.