Friday, May 09, 2008

My Take: DC United 0 - 2 Chicago Fire

Last night's match showed alot more than just how good Chicago is this season. It showed how United is really not that great even after the massive amounts of change was went through over the offseason. It also showed how poor a coach Tom Soehn is.

First things first, Chicago was the better club and deserved to win last night. They took their shots and took advantage of what United gave them. Furthermore, they have one of the best defenses that I have seen in MLS in a long time. The way that their midfield and defenders completely snuffed out any attack that United tried was impressive.

However, as good as they were, United's players were that bad. Again, last night I saw too many attempts to walk the ball into the 6 yard box and try a nifty shot. I saw too many times a guy would have the ball inside the 18 yard box and his first and only decision was to pass. Guys, you win games by scoring goals. You score goals by taking shots.

Clearly the Fire were the better team, but United helped them last night by failing to take shots and to play the full 90 minutes. They also helped Chicago by the way that they were coached. I blame Tom Soehn for this.

Emillio should have been benched last night, newly signed DP or not. He has sucked it up on the field the past 8 or so matches and has failed to pull out of the funk he is in. Benching him and his new bonus might get things into his head that he needs to wake the hell up.

Neill really hasn't been the shining light that the Front office made him out to be over the break. He is too small of a forward and gets knocked around too often to really cause a problem for defenders. If Doe is good enough to get a contract, he should be good enough to get more playing time than he did last night.

Coach Soehn has yet to really show that he has the coaching skill needed to bring these guys together, or to properly manage a squad. If he did, Emillio and Gallardo would already have the kind of rapport that Emillio had with Gomez. Soehn would know when to pull players and bench them. He showed these qualities last season, but seems to be out thinking himself this season. This season his use of subs in matches has been truly baffling. I really don't know exactly how much longer the Front office or the club in general can hold out the hope that the on the field performances and the coaching get better.

With United facing a long week of training and three matches of four on the road, this is major crunch time. DC United's season will hinge on these next four matches. I do not really think that the club has it in itself, with the current coach, to get through these matches with anything more than maybe, 2 points.

If the Front office does remove Soehn, then I honestly think that the most logical steps would be to hire Marco Etcheverry as the head coach and bring Ben Olsen, who's career seems to be cut short as an assistant. Either that, or bring in Bruce Arena with Olsen as an assistant.

Whatever is done, a change needs to be done soon. As they do have a long week, if they do remove Soehn today and install someone today, the players and whomever they bring in will have a full 7 days to work together, which isn't much in the scheme of things, but it would be better than if they had even less time.

A breath of fresh air is needed. Change needs to come. The time is now.

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