Thursday, August 23, 2012

8/23/2012: When The Crew Lead, They Look Most Likely To Lose


Warzycha saw another lead disappear at Houston, was lucky against Toronto

8/23/2012: When The Crew Lead, They Look Most Likely To Lose
By Ryan Kozlowski
CREWTURE.COM


If the Crew don't make the playoffs at the end of the 2012 season, I know what Crew fans will point to ->

The Crew's, or rather Manager Robert Warzycha's obsession with bunkering whenever the Crew has a lead late in a game.

Or rather not late, but an entire second half when the Crew are winning, inviting the opposing offense to attack at will and to bombard Andy Greunebaum with wave after wave of opportunities.

Once in a while it's worked barely, like the win at Sporting Kansas City... And that's only because Kei Kamara muffed a wide open look, that even he could finish usually 10 times out of 10.

But, at other times the Crew have paid for going into their defensive bunker shell way too early, such as the loss at Montreal and late ties against LA and Houston; both which could've been 3 points if the Crew just decided to attack or play more possession, at least giving the opposing defense something to think about.

Last night against Toronto, things got a little sketchy as well after the Crew went up 2-nil.

Soon after Higuain's goal, the Crew subbed three defenders on (Grossman, O'Rourke, James) for two attack-minded players (Higuain, Mirosevic) and a defender (Miranda).

After those substitutions the Crew couldn't possess enough with just Gaven and Arrieta out there offensively, Birchall usually a destroyer at DM was asked to play more offensively (with two other DM's in, in Grossman and O'Rourke) but Birchall couldn't garner the offensive chances that Higuain could, unsurprisingly.

Instead, Toronto put another attacking option in, in Amarikwa, and scored right away to make it 2-1 and almost tied it up a few minutes after with a shot by Ryan Johnson that missed by about a foot.

If it would of went in, see you later playoff chances.

Luckily for Warzycha, Columbus were playing Toronto F.C. who couldn't take advantage; leaving Columbus with a big three points and some momentum going into two more weaker opponents in New England at home and Philadelphia away.

If the Crew take the lead against the Revolution or the Philly Union in the upcoming two games, I hope Warzycha keeps the pressure on the opposing defense by continuing to play the ball around and by keeping possession.

When we take off a Higuain and Mirosevic and replace them with a Grossman and O'Rourke, instead of a Duka or Meram (for at least one of them), were making it obvious that were not planning to possess the ball.

Any MLS team is good enough to come back and get the tie or the win, if the Crew are going to be like "here's the ball, attack us for 30 minutes" during each second half.

The Crew can add one more defensive player when they have a lead in upcoming games, but they could still possess and play the game, there's no need to bunker and hope for the best.

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