RSL tore up the Crew, even if they were abetted a bit by some lax defending and questionable goalkeeping. Considering our own lax defending and questionable goalkeeping ways, that might spell trouble for tomorrow night. But I'm getting ahead of myself. What about a look at some roster concerns heading into the match?
- Janicki and Wicks are out per the latest GoffTweet. That guarantees Crayton in net and almost certainly a reprise of the Burch-Jakovic-Namoff back line, assuming...
- More of the 3-5-2? With McTavish returning to fitness, it's possible that we might go 4-4-2 with McTavish pairing Jakovic in the middle, with, I'm assuming, hilarious and horrible consequences.
- In other "return from injury" news, I'm guessing Fred might be fit enough to start, and Quaranta is probably ready to get some minutes, if not start himself. With McTavish also available, does that mean Wallace sees pine or does he remain at left mid? And...
- Where does Pontius go? The kid has impressed at both forward and right mid. With Moreno suspended, does he rejoin Emilio up top, with Fred/McTavish taking over the right mid spot, or does he remain at right mid, leaving N'Silu/Doe to partner Emilio?
Do I feel sick giving Burch the starting nod? Yep. I'd rather a back four with Wallace at left back. But that begs the question: why no Wallace? In my mind, and in the minds of many others, Beltran and Olave are the the weak links in the RSL chain. Using Fred instead of Wallace allows us to bring more attacking pressure to bear on Beltran at right back. Also, I'd play Pontius over N'Silu because of Olave, who is a beast suited to banging bodies with N'Silu. With Pontius, he'll have a bit of guile to deal with. McTavish on the right of midfield helps us defend against what will probably be the more attacking flank.
For a nice look at what our opponents are bringing to the table, I point you to this helpful post (noting that later in the thread, the poster agrees with subsequent comments that Mathis and Johnson will flip sides, thus leading to my McTavish appointment above).
So what do you think? Worried about another possible mauling in the Beehive State? Excited to see some of our injured boys returning to the fray? Can the unbeaten run possibly continue? What lineup would you run out for this match?