Again the mistakes kill us. A rusty McTavish swinging like a barn door lets in the big Cro Magnon, and it's game, set, match for the Reds. I'm angry, yes--that pretty much goes without saying given our current run, but I'm also encouraged by the effort tonight in difficult conditions. If we don't ship that early goal, things might have been different. Of course, different may have been worse if TFC continued to attack us rather than sitting back and waiting to counter. But all that aside, I was moderately encouraged by the performance. Some talking points . . .
* That ball from Emilio to Tino to set up the early chance has got to be better. If Santino can first time that in stride, I think we're level. Actually, that play was some of what I found encouraging. We actually (gasp! OMFG! shock and awe!) had some legitimate flank play. Fred had two great chances in the second half, but couldn't find the net. Which brings me to . . .
* God do I feel stupid now for not posting that the back line that we put out tonight was one that I thought we ought to go with when everybody got healthy. Martinez and Namoff were both pushing into the attack well, and save for the McTavish Moment of Rust and the inevitable chances suffered when pressing forward late, I thought we looked pretty decent at the back. But for all of that, Martinez' constant cutting the ball back rather than hitting a cross was a touch frustrating. Still, that's miles better than we've looked lately.
* Oh, and who's a fella gotta lobby in MLS HQ to have Danny Dicchio issued a mandatory yellow card every time he steps on the pitch? Neanderthal football thug life at its finest indeed.
* Saying I'm not a fan of Tommy's substitutions would be a bit of an understatement. You're going hard for a point to end a horrible patch, and you wait until five minutes to go to bring on another striker--and then only as a replacement for a departing one? What in God's name are you playing at, man? Burch for Fred immediately eliminates all the good that's been going down the left flank. Sure, Burch can hit a cross, but how many do you have in the box to get on the end of those crosses, and how many of them are aerial threats? (crickets) Burch didn't (or couldn't?) press the issue in attack, instead sitting back and waiting for a little gap to hit a cross into. And Mediate? Whatever. Tommy's attacking answer during the mandatory MLS lame-ass in-game conference call? Shoot more from distance! Um, okay, through exactly which opening are we supposed to spank those balls?
That's it for now. I'm sure there's more that'll come bubbling up to the surface as I read what others have to say, but right now, I'm tired, and I'm wrung out. I'm also really excited for the rematch this weekend. I want to see us go after them hard and with no mercy. There better be blood and there better be goals (theirs and ours respectively, of course ;-). You'll forgive me for launching a few half-hearted prayers in the direction of St. Jude, right? Desperate cases and lost causes indeed.