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Monday, September 04, 2006

Who are these guys?

Dunga's done a bit of housecleaning, and apparently he's found some decent players tucked away in some dark corners. Like Elano, a supposedly quiet midfielder who managed to outrun Daniel Bilos - Argentina's answer to the Empire State Building - twice on his way to scoring.

TDH took in the match at Manhattan's football mecca, the famous Nevada Smith's, with an Argentine friend. The Argies looked pretty good, with plenty of talent and plenty of chances. But the final touch was lacking... always.

And Coco Basile didn't seem to have done much with the team in his first few days. But TDH wasn't surprised. Without Ayala keeping things organized at the back, there was the same lack of communication between El Pato Abbondanzieri and Coloccini that TDH had ridiculed in the Croatia friendly before the World Cup.

Meanwhile, Dunga tried out a few more new faces. (Dudu! Sobis! Maicon!) And as Kaka ran halfway across the pitch to score the third in instant replay, TDH heard a Brazilian fan saying, "Maradona can go to hell," or something rather more colorful to that effect....


Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

I trust that you gave that misguided fool a sharp slap in the face? As much as I love Kaka, he's no Diego.

I didn't catch the game, did El Kun play? and if so, was he any good? And who is Clemente Rodriguez? I've heard his name cited as a potential world-beater, but I know nothing about him.

12:26 PM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

Ah, I was hoping somebody would ask about El Kun, the ex-Independiente wunderkind. Yes, he did play a bit of the second half, and yes, he did show a couple of sparkling moves in the box. He lofted a Ronaldinho-like short chip to Zabaleta (or was it Insua?) who promptly shot wide of a half-open goal.

But El Kun missed a couple of his own chances, too. And at one point, he tried to rip some holes in the back of Lucio's calf with a studs-up tackle from behind. At least the pint-sized kid is fearless!

3:49 PM  
Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

so what's the feeling generally in Argentina after that performance? I'd imagine that their team is actually going to get worse for the next world cup, despite, Aguero and Messi. They won't have Crespo, who oozes class, and can be expected to score against any defence, Ayala and Sorin will be gone, Heinze will be on the downhill journey, not sure about Burdisso and Maxi.

The definite plus points are Tevez, Messi, Aguero (allegedly), Mascherano and possibly Lucho Gonzalez. But no good defenders seem to be coming up (unless this Clemente Rodriguez character is one), so I don't see how they can be as good as they were this year, when Pekerman shot them in the foot.

10:48 AM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

I wasn't overly impressed by Clemente, though he certainly held his own. I liked him more than Coloccini, but that's not hard.

I've never been a big fan of Lucho. But another reason for optimism, besides the tiny tots strike force, is Ustari, the 20-year-old Independiente keeper and third-string in the World Cup. Still, you're right that the defense is going to suffer. I don't see top talent coming into those slots, either. I asked a friend (and die-hard Boca fan) about a replacement for Ayala, and he didn't have any ideas.

2:31 PM  

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