Sunday, April 29, 2012

Crew Game 7: Loss Tactic (VAN)

The Vancouver Whitecaps bunkered down and held out for the win yesterday while the Crew will feel a little hard done by ill timed calls from the referee early in the match.

Yesterdays game felt similar to the last July 2011 meeting between the two, save for one thing: Vancouver is improving and Columbus is not.

Stout defense and sharp organized counters was the 'Caps order for day and Columbus lacked the kind of creativity it takes to win against a club employing those tactics (or any tactics, for that matter). Columbus tuckered themselves out (mentally and physically) and fell flat on their faces.

Columbus went after the Whitecaps with everything they had, early. The Crew appeared to have one early from a corner off the foot of Josh Williams but the ref blew the whistle on some grab ass in the box.

From there, the Crew continued to pressure and dictated play. As the half wore on, though, you could tell what the 'Caps were doing. Only thing left was to pour a beer, settle in for a long 2nd half and muddle to myself, "Warzycha can crack this safe because he is dressed like Niko Bellic tonight."

The continued to be the team asking questions but got no answers. Once Crew forward Schoenfeld went down with a ankle injury (57') the game died. You could feel the Crew energy level just drop and drop and drop from there.

In the 74 minuted Lee Young-Pyo dropped in a free kick shot / cross over a befuddled Andy Gruenebaum. The smile on Lee's face afterwards said it all. A 0-0 game just turned into a 3 pt road win for the visitors.

• Aaron Schoenfeld and Josh Williams really lifted the team yesterday. Williams in particular stole the show in the opening stanza. Excellent ball placement on the disallowed goal and a flying over-head kick that clanked off the crossbar.

• Josh looked so impressive early on that I got the feeling a few phones were ringing. His size, build and athletic ability alone will put him on the radar of better teams (both here and abroad). Yesterday he showed skill as well.

• Where are Justin Meram and Bernardo Anor? Ethan Finlay just isn't there yet and I didn't even see Meram and Anor on the bench. It is bizarre.

• Columbus needs a creative Mirosevic to step up, especially games like this one. If he can play in this league, that is.

• Columbus needs to improve on corners. It is always a mess in there. Chad Marshall has a reputation as being somewhat grabby and breakable in corner situations. His petulant complaining after the match only makes things worse. He is at full boil right now, but so are the fans and supporters, he needs to keep his cool. Otherwise this season will completely unravel.

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