A Change Is Gonna Come?

The Good Ship United is drifting rudderless through the troubled waters of the Gomez/Gallardo drama, gaping holes in its hull, and the FO's bilge pump is apparently broken or lost somewhere in South America. And the vast unwashed ranks of United internet-nut-jobbery seem to be just as confused as the club's braintrust. Are we supposed to be cautiously optimistic, idling in neutral, or strapping on the sandwich boards and proclaiming that "the end is nigh"? The only thing that seems to be certain is that a change is brewing.

And that raises some questions.
  • Do we need a playmaking midfielder? The consensus seems to be that if Gallardo goes, then we need to bring in somebody to fill the Muñeco-shaped hole in our roster. Why? Are we so conditioned by likes of Etcheverry and Gomez that we'd have phantom limb syndrome without one? What's to keep us from putting out two water carriers in central midfield and allowing Moreno, Quaranta, or hell, even Fred for that matter, to play beneath the other striker? Given the sorry state of our current central defense, it might not be a bad idea to clog the midfield ahead of them. Besides, doesn't it seem that teams clog the middle against us anyway? Why play into their hands?
  • Where should the money go? Why should the $400k in cleared salary be filled with more attacking midfield talent? If anything, we need a solid defender or two and maybe a winger. Yes, we could play Fred or Quaranta as wingers, but are they really? Not in my book. Wingers aside, the big issue is obviously (and gods do I know I'm harping on this--sorry) the center of defense. We've got what? A USL-2 kid (Janicki) who may or may not pan out but looked promising in a handful of tough games down the stretch last year. A solid pro (McTavish) who fills a lot of holes as a utility man but isn't ideal in the middle. And a big body (Veris) on trial who wasn't exactly stellar in MLS or the Norwegian second division but "intrigues" the FO with his size and athleticism.
  • Is age really the answer? Let's face it, Gomez wasn't a 90 minute player when he left last year, and another year doesn't do him any favors in the fitness department. If you put him and Jaime out there as starters, you've got to figure that they'll both need to come off at some point. That's a hell of a tactical limitation to be going into a game with, and Tommy's already got his own innate set of tactical limitations without having more foisted on his shoulders. Now let's consider how many years we think we can get out of Gomez. It seems to me that there's too much short-term planning going on. Rather than splashing the cash on "been there, done that" veterans, perhaps it's time to look for a little youth and hunger to build around.
And there are other questions, I'm sure, so fire away in the comments. I don't really have any answers. If I did, perhaps I'd be gainfully employed in soccer management or coaching somewhere rather than toiling on the intar-webs and playing too much Football Manager. All I know is . . .


  1. as we have previously discussed, i want fitness, youth, and a small price tag, not injuries, age, and DP $$. i'm in for dax mccarty, unfortunately i think dcu's game plan depends on that diablo, muneco, gomito shaped hole.

  2. Having Fred and Santino in the middle could work. Fred was a star in Australia as a withdrawn forward and seems more comfortable in the middle of the pitch. Santino did well when substituting for either Jaime or Gallardo and he also seems more naturally suited to play in the middle of the pitch.

    We would need to spend money on central defenders and someone who could play on the right wing. Maybe Jacobsen fits the bill but it would be good to get someone who is more proven. Roger seems to be our guy for now in central defense, along with Janicki and McTavish, but I would love to pick up someone like Conde who can add some muscle in the middle and is already proven in the league.

  3. Jacobson is more of a central midfielder than a winger. If he's in the mix and can hack it in MLS, and Benny's ankles hold up, I'd have no problem with Fred and Moreno (and Quaranta if we can land a right winger) playing as withdrawn forwards.

    I'm still worried about Roger. I don't care how many games the FO saw of him playing center back in Brazil. The game is different here. Will he fit in or is this just another Sudamericano shot in the dark?

    Veris (on trial) would certainly provide some beef to the back line, though I hope he's picked up some tactical nous during his time in the Scandanavian Defender Mines. A pairing of Veris the Bruiser with Roger the Director might work, but that (a) seems like wishful thinking,(b) is yet another drastic change at the back that will probably take time to settle, and (c) depends upon both Veris (or Janicki) and Roger being up to snuff in MLS.

    Still worrying, but feeling the warm breath of hope for the first time in a dog's age with Gallardo's impending move.

  4. WOW!! Is it just me or does Al Green share an UNCANNY resemblance to Emilio? No, really. Can we utilize Tino this year? Plays with heart he does. Fred, a great fit. Burch, who saw that left boot coming? Naamof, nuff said. Emilio, can put the lotion in the basket. Doe, saved us from looking like total poofs there at the end last year. Vide, Guerro, took it to the hole made ya Momma talk. The rest are good for 45mins. Are DCU going to build around the philosophy of United or do wht they want. Could you imagine Harkes playing with this squad? He'd have a fit with the FO. Thank God we have gotten rid of a primadonna.