Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Game Review & CONCACAF Draw

Sorry for the lack of posts after Saturday's 1-1 draw. I've had computer problems and been sick. My computer issues still aren't solved so this is going to be a quick combined post.

First Saturday's game. A just result arrived at in an unjust way. A great free kick from Jamie Smith led to Drew Moor's first goal of the season. Then a Jeff Larentowicz take-down in the box did not get DC the PK call they deserved. 5 or so minutes later a foul against Kimura in the box was called on him, giving DC a bogus PK. In the end DC earned a PK and got a PK, but not in the way it should have happened.

Many people have commented that Drew Moor should have been sent off late int he first half due to being the last defender and taking down Dax McCarty who was behind him and heading towards goal. As Balboa attempted to explain after halftime, "last defender" doesn't appear anywhere in the rules and in fact the USSF years ago issued further explanation for how to determine a red card on a Denial of Obvious Goal-Scoring Opportunity (DOGSO). Essentially the ref has to take into account if there were other defenders able to make a play, if the play was going right at goal, and how far the player was from the ball and the goal. Since this foul took place just over the midfield stripe and the ball was a ways in front of McCarty with two other defenders pretty much even with him, the ref can make the judgement that there was not an obvious goal-scoring opportunity and issue a yellow card, which is what he did.

Player of the Game: Drew Moor. Scored the goal, made a crucial interception (see above) and avoided the red card, and prevented dangerous attacks from the left side all night.

CONCACAF Champion's League Draw,
The draw for the 2011/2012 CONCACAF Champion's League was held today, which included the Rapids. The Rapids were the top team in Group B, due to their MLS Cup victory. The other 3 teams drawn into their group are:

Real Espana - Honduran Apatura winner
Santos - Mexican Apatura runner-up OR Olimpia - Honduran Apatura & Clasura runner up*
Isidro Metapan - El Salvadoran Apaturan winner OR Caribbean Football Union Club Championship winner **

* - Honduras was given an extra spot after Belize did not meet stadium requirements for their champion. As the runner-up in both seasons Olimpia got the spot.
** - The final rounds of the CFU Club Championship are next week. The teams remaining are the Puerto Rico Islanders, Alpha United (Guyana), Defence Force (Trinidad & Tobago), and Tempete (Haiti).

The favorites in the CFU have to be Puerto Rico, as the defending champs, and Defence Force. The two teams won their 2-leg series in the last round by a combined score of 15-1, while the other two won their series by a combined score of 4-3 and Tempete had to go to PK's. Trinidad & Tobago has had a representative in the final every year of the 12 year competition as well.

Santos should win its preliminary round matchup over Olimpia, but Santos hasn't looked great in this Clasura season finishing just out of the playoffs. Isidro Metapan made the Clasura semi-finals before being knocked out so they'll be a tough matchup for the CFU winner. Real Espana won the Apatura but then finished out of the playoffs in the Clasura.

Santos is the big fish in this group (barring an upset by Olimpia) as any Mexican team would be. I'm assuming they will claim one of the two knock-out stage qualification spots. That means the Rapids have to beat Real Espana and the Metapan/CFU winner. I think the Rapids can do that, but the key will be to beat both of them at home and get at least a draw out of the home Santos game. Then they'll still need to get at least 2 points out of their trips to Real Espana and Metapan/CFU.

1 comment:

Schmicker said...

overall not a terrible draw for either of our teams. sounders had metapan in the prelim stages last year and got past them..i dont see any reason why the rapids cant do the same