Some Game 9 thoughts while we all wait for the press conference to officially announce the departure of yet another original member...
- I was a bit surprised to see Michael Farfan playing right back. What's the point of having Albright and Lopez on the roster if we're going to just play midfielders in the back? Lopez played some CB vs Schalke and didn't look bad there. Or if they didn't want to risk that, Albright is a FB. And yet, Farfan did just fine.
- Loved the look of the offense. Pajoy played his best game, I think. Not just because he scored two goals - though that's great, of course. With the burden of being by himself with his back to the goalie gone, Pajoy was able to run, take defenders on one-on-one, and create. He was, I thought, spectacular.
- Mwanga looked rusty. I think that's probably to be expected. Saw some things I liked, and hope he keeps on playing. (Of course, if Scott's twitter rumor of Mwanga to Vancouver is true, well...)
- Speaking of best game... Freddy Adu! Dude! We've been waiting for that sort of performance!
- Speaking of Freddy Adu... Dear MLS referees: if you're going to keep screwing us, could you at least be kind enough to use a little lube?
- Speaking of the officials... I will never understand why an official (in any sport, not just soccer) gives out repeated warnings for the same problem. It's like those parents you see at the playground, whose kid is running around all wild. And the parent keeps yelling, "If you don't stop, we're going home!" Then a minute later, "I mean it, we're going to leave if you don't behave!" "This is your last chance!" And, of course, it's not the last chance. If your warnings have no consequences, they're meaningless. Similarly, when a ref constantly warns somebody against diving or time wasting or whatever else, but doesn't follow through, then the warnings just serve to waste more game time while 18,000 people sit there and watch you feebly tell the Pink Cows to knock it off.
- I'm still not sure how somebody didn't score on that one play along the goal line in the 2nd half. I haven't seen a replay yet, but from our seats in 109 we thought the ball crossed the line. But since nobody closer really made a big fuss, I assume it was just a trick of the eye for us.
- Cooper's goal, I think, was the worst play of MacMath's (short) career. Everybody makes mistakes, but damn that's a really bad time in the game to make one.
- I was very glad to see we were getting more shots. Now, I'd love to see the offense turn more of those shots into shots on goal. The Union had great control and runs in the first half - when it was still 11 vs. 11 - but too many of the shots were wide or over the net. Even in the 2nd half, possession seemed really solid to me up until the final 5 or so minutes, when the Union were pushing for the equalizer.
- Speaking of the push... Gaddis made a spectacular play very late in the game. Everybody - including MacMath was down in the offensive end pushing for the tying goal. And the ball popped out to a Pink Cow poacher. And Gaddis chased him down from behind and made a spectacular slide tackle to knock the ball into the corner. That goal is, more or less, immaterial as it probably doesn't matter much if the final score is 3-2 or 4-2. But I loved the hussle and the effort. I think Gaddis is quickly turning into the steal of the draft.
So there's my thoughts and what I remember from the game. As always, I'm interested in conversation, not just me typing away. So by all means argue with me if you think I'm way off base on something.