Sunday, April 11, 2010

Wizards Bespell Rapids

The Rapids continued their pattern of futility in Kansas City Saturday night. A 1-0 loss for the good guys. The Rapids didn't look great at any point in the game, but in the first half they had the better chances. Both Cummings and Ballouchy had clear shots on goal from inside the box. Cummings powered his in and the keeper made a save off of his face. Ballouchy somehow managed to sky his over the baron an almost empty net. That was the closes the Rapids would get.

In the second half the Rapids had nothing, and a moment of indecision by Matt Pickens cost them the game. On a free kick into the box Kamara out-jumped Baudet and Casey to send a high header at the box. A ball that was easy for a keeper on his line to save, but for some reason Pickens had taken two steps towards the ball as it came in, stopped, and tried to backpedal towards his line. He was too far out and the header got over him and into the net for the lead. Poor decision making by Pickens. The Rapids had two chances after that, the first where Cummings was offside by may half a step and the second when Clark was in 1 on 1 with the keeper and powered a shot right at him instead of placing it in the far corner. The other event of note was a straight red card for dangerous play to Baudet. IMO the foul wasn't even worth a yellow card (which would have been Baudet's second) much less a red. A horrible decision by the center referee, who had a bad night.

My key to the game was midfield dominance, and we didn't have any. Our offense was either passing it to Clark to link up with the Dynamic Duo, or lofting it over the top in the hope that one of them could get on it. KC figured this out quickly, closed down Clark, and left us with nothing but long balls.

Other Observations:
  • Ballouchy was useless, again. There's no reason he should be starting in Smith's 'empty bucket' midfield as he adds nothing to the offense and the critical positions in this formation are the wingers.
  • Of course Jamie Smith, in his first minutes this season, showed nothing in replacing Ballouchy. hopefully that's just rust, because if that's all he has then we wasted a signing on him.
  • I had predicted that Earls was a lock to start on the left while the other back line positions were up in the air. Turns out it was Earls that made way for Baudet, with Moor moving out to the left.
  • While the red card was uncalled for, Baudet did not have a great game. Beaten on the header, getting a stupid yellow for taking revenge, and then the red. Hopefully that is also rust for him.
  • Pablo, STFU. I thought you had matured past stupid yellow cards for dissent, but not in this game. And that one came after Cummings had rushed up and shoved Pablo away from the referee early in the game.
  • Casey is losing his spot on the WC roster. Part of his problem is his own making but part of it is also the lack of support from midfield. Casey has never had a great first touch or ball control, but the rest of the team send long balls to him with thee expectation that he'll bring the ball down, control it, and make something happen. That's not his game.
  • Cummings looks like he's a level above the rest of the team. He making runs, generating chances, and trying to carry the squad.
Player of the Game: Drew Moor. He was asked to play a new position and prevented any danger from the Wizards on that side.

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