I've learned a lot from reading the posts and comments on this site. I like learning new things, so let's keep that ball rolling. I'm curious: If you were the manager of the Union, what would your lineup this weekend be? Both starting and bench. And, what would you be looking for as a basic strategy in the game? How would you handle subs as the game went along?
There has to be some assumptions, so here's mine. Please keep this in mind as you fill out your "lineup card" and plan on winning the match.
- Danny Califf is out.
- Danny Mwanga is healthy enough to play, but maybe not a full 90.
- Kai Herdling still doesn't have his visa sorted, and so can't play in the match. (Though a quick note: the Union's roster on their website lists him as "Active," for whatever that's worth.)
- Remember that Hoppenot and Hoffman are with Harrisburg, and so are unavailable in this match.
I think that's all the assumptions we need. So, tell me your starting 11. Tell me who's on your bench. Tell me what your lineup is going to do in order to beat the Goats. Tell me how you'll handle subs in the second half if we're winning, losing, or tied.
And fair is fair. So here's my lineup. MacMath; G. Farfan, Valdes, Williams, Gaddis; Carroll, Adu, M. Farfan, Daniel; Martinez, Mwanga.
I don't like not having Gomez on the field, but I want to see two forwards, so somebody had to go. I considered dropping Marfan and leaving Gomez in, but that didn't feel "good" to me.
Adu plays wide left, Daniel plays wide right, Marfan plays the middle. All three have the freedom to move in and out as needed on offense. That is, if Adu wants to cut inside, go for it. If Marfan wants to carry wide left, go for it. I want all three of them to tap into their creativity and confidence on the ball.
I want Martinez or Mwanga to look for the occasional long ball, a la Le Toux the past two years. But I don't want them to rely on it. I want a lot of on-the-ground movement of the ball between my midfield and forwards. I want my four midfielders and two full backs to move the ball smartly on the ground, and for my forwards to look for gaps in the defense created from the movement. My creative guys are looking for through balls to the forwards, or crosses if they get down deep. And, of course, somebody's gotta get into the box and get a foot/head/whatever on the ball.
As for bench and sub strategy... well, I'm not quite comfortable going there yet. Call it part of my learning process.
So, what's your game plan? How do you lineup against Chivas tomorrow night, and what's your game plan?