McCarty Replaces Sturgis: US Olympic Team Thoughts (Updated Friday)
Dax McCarty from USSoccer.com
Peter Nowak swapped one Floridian for another as Dax McCarty replaces the injured Nathan Sturgis on the US squad. This leaves Nowak with only four natural defenders on the squad which leaves for Hong Kong and pre Olympic training tomorrow. The swap also gives Nowak more options in the midfield. McCarty and Strugis have both been solid performers for the US youth national teams recently unlike some other choices to the Olympic team, namely Benny Feilhaber. By picking one and not the other for his initial squad, Nowak made room for Feilhaber but essentially cut the number of defenders.
With this in mind should Nowak play a 3-5-2 or 3-2-2-1-2 in the Olympics? Is the 4-4-2 or the 4-5-1 not a feasible option for this side as reconstructed after Sturgis injury?
Here are some ideas:
Or how about this?
If you go with the more defensive look outlined on top Dax McCarty replaces Danny Szetela who has a propensity to give the ball away when pressured and Robbie Rogers replaces Stuart Holden to help stimulate the attack. The lineup on the bottom trusts Michael Bradley to clean up in front of the back line and for Danny Szetela and Stuart Holden to know when they must drop back allowing Bradley to step up and join the attack. Marvell Wynne is the one viable option of the bench on the backline and he is right footed and sometimes gets caught pushing too far forward. Another possibility is to play Stuart Holden at left back and stick play a 4-4-2. If this is done I’d expect Danny Szetela to head to the bench, Marvell Wynne to replace Mo Edu at right back, and Edu to replace Michael Orozco in the lineup and Robbie Rogers to play wide on the left side. That would also effectively make Charlie Davies the only pure attacking option off the bench. Here is how that lineup would look:
Thoughts? What was the point of Benny Felihaber’s selection with any of these tactical alignments?