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Bradley’s Bucket: Safety First?


Bob Bradley’s tactics are worrisome to begin with, but now player selection is becoming a bigger and bigger issue for the US National Team. The bucket formation which has been criticized from the get go as non conducive to international football (although the formation and its variations have been very successful in MLS). Bradley’s Bucket worked well in early CONCACAF qualifiers when at least one of the holding midfielders was a good ball winner, and positioned behind the rest of the midfield.

Generally this would require either Pablo Mastroeni or Mo Edu to play at all times. But by pairing Sacha Kljestan who I have never believed is ready for this level of football with the risky Michael Bradley, who should be on the pitch but in a more advanced position, Bradley’s tactics have opened the door for the US to be exposed away from home.

Another option is to pair Jonathan Spector who can play holding midfield with Bradley. Spector however may be more valuable on the back line however. One thing is certain: if the US goes to Costa Rica or Mexico with Kljestan starting in central midfield, chances of the US getting a result are minimal at best.

The bucket also requires creative and daring wide play. For three years now, DaMarcus Beasley has provided little if any quality on the left side. Beasley is too defensive, and too safe to be taken seriously as an attacking threat. Eddie Lewis in his mid thirties remained a better option than Beasley the past few years, but now Lewis is probably too old to play 90 minutes and other options have not been developed.

Bobby Convey’s work ethic and training habits have rendered him useless to Bradley even when healthy. Colin Clarke, and Justin Mapp have failed to develop to an international caliber game while left footed Freddy Adu and Jose Francisco Torres are more useful in the middle of the pitch than out wide.

So perhaps the US is forced to play Clint Dempsey on the left side going forward? But then who replaces Dempsey out wide on the right side? Landon Donovan gets lost when playing out wide. Donovan’s best role is as a roving attacking midfielder, finding space and holding the ball.

At the back Heath Pearce has been woeful although many of his problems can be ascribed to Beasley’s poor positioning and bad giveaways on the left side. Pearce’s lack of quality may in fact be a direct result of Beasley being completely outclassed on the left side against every decent CONCACAF opponent.

Carlos Bocanegra, who Bradley unwisely handed the captain’s armband two years ago remains inconsistent and continues to make mind numbing mistakes at critical times of big games. Oguchi Onyewu is the second best field player the US has, but when he is injured as he was Saturday night you see the limitations of the rest of the American backline.

Steve Cherundolo should not automatically regain his starting position on the right side. For 12 years now, if the US has won a big game, Frankie Hejduk has been on the pitch while the US has been substantially worse when the resourceful player who has lined up at every position at the back and several midfield positions also for the US through the years is not in the lineup.

As far as the attack is concerned the US has to work Freddy Adu, Jose Francisco Torres and Jozy Altidore into the lineup now. The US is likely to qualify regardless of who plays in CONCACAF because the US is so solid at home, having not dropped a point on US soil before World Cup qualification since 2001. So now is the time for Bradley to blood let the kids.

But admitedly working Adu and Torres into the bucket formation is nearly impossible. If Bradley remains married to the bucket, chances of both Adu and Torres ever playing in meaningful games is minimal. One or the other may play but in the current formation it is impossible to find a way to place both on the pitch at the same time.

The US will win Wednesday at home against Trinidad and Tobago. But Bradley has huge decisions to make about his tactics, formation and player selection to avoid an embarrassing defeat at Saprissa against Costa Rice in May.

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  1. Ian is frustrated with Bradley

    April 1, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Joey. I agree with you on Canada. MLS and USL have continued to destroy the American game by allowing unlimited Canadian expansion. WTF is the Thunder Bay whatever doing winning the PDL. Our development league won by Canadians???????????????? People do not realize what that means. The Laredo Heat a legendary american PL club being beat by Canadians in OUR league.

    I personally would rather all these Canadian teams leave MLS and USL and form their own league. Honestly, I totally agree with you.

  2. Kartik

    March 31, 2009 at 7:07 pm

    Very refreshing to find discussions and comments from people who understand the game and tactics. We’re in such a weird position here in the US. If we aim for results only, we may add a few clueless American fans, but will children look up to these players? Of we play 4-3-3 , then we see the full flowing attacking potential that will stop young Americans from buying Ronaldinho jerseys and start buying a “Donovan 10” jersey and have American footy heroes to look up to. But there is a very good medium. Find a balanced formation, hell what’s wrong with a 4-4-2 diamond midfield if Bob’s too incompetent to play anything else? To be honest, the worst thing about Bob is that he forces a rigid system that doesn’t fit our pool instead of adapting a system that fits the players. It’s quite depressing when fans, who watch all 90 minutes, can say that the performance was ok because we stole a point (or El Salvador handed it to us) when we couldn’t string three passes in a row. Then, we can’t play younger guys because “They don’t have experience, and the older guys keep there starting positions no matter how bad their club situation. It really is frustrating, because as I love supporting my country, I hate explaining to “fans” that while the result may have been adequate, the PERFORMANCE was disgusting. The quickest fix Bob could do is playing with two strikers. Seriously, if he thinks his son is such a good player (which he is, but to be honest, I’d still prefer Mastroeni if we had to play with a real D-mid) why doesn’t he pull Kljestan and give that consistent, but useless Ching a partner, say….JOZY FREAKING ALTIDORE.

    P.S. My name is really Kartik, and I’m bookmarking your site, the articles are some of the top stuff.

  3. Joey Clams

    March 31, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    CSA has to approve also, yes.

    As to why the Canadian Cup is contested only by MLS and USL teams, well, that’s Canada’s business, just as the MLS was once ours.

  4. Liverpool John

    March 31, 2009 at 11:02 am

    Isn’t the CSA recognized as the federation for Canada? Don’t they have a first division?

    Shouldn’t the CSA approve MLS moves also if MLS is in Canada? What about USL? They are in Canada also.

    Also if Canada has a professional league why is the Canadian Cup only contested by MLS and USL teams?

  5. Liverpool John

    March 31, 2009 at 11:00 am

    The US has the talent to play an attacking free flowing style of football.

    Here is my lineup


    Adu Donovan (attacking mids)
    Torres Dempsey (wide mids)
    Bradley (d-mid)
    Spector Bocanegra Onyewu Cherdundolo

  6. Joey Clams

    March 31, 2009 at 10:54 am

    By the way, take a look at the notes from the recent BofD meeting.

    There is no mention of Vancouver.

  7. Kartik

    March 31, 2009 at 9:41 am

    coaching in MLS is not a pre-requisite for success in any other league or at the international level. The league so different than the rest of the world is its own self contained world.

    Agreed. I think certain elements within the USSF know this, but nothing has been done. Look as someone said last week here, MLS’ quality is lagging less because of the players and more because of the simple, almost child like tactics in matches. That’s why someone like J.C. Osorio will dominate MLS if he is ever able to assemble a team with a decent amount of talent. He’s so much more sophisticated tactically than other MLS managers.

  8. Kartik

    March 31, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Gulati is on the Kraft’s payroll. And, yet, he is the president of the USSF.

    The word is that anyone on the Board of Directors who votes against the inclusion of Canadian teams – and their expansion fees – , will be shunned by the league. In other words, the Federation is no longer the independent authority that it is supposed to be. And no one in the America soccer media dares raise a hand.

    Yup. Very true, Joey Clams. I have heard through the grapevine that the USSF was not happy about the USL and Miami FC ads in El Salvador. But why? Shouldn’t they be pleased a US league and US based team were being promoted? Or is it simply that they are now lapdogs for MLS?

  9. Kartik

    March 31, 2009 at 9:35 am

    Gulati has blamed the failure of the 2006 on white people,
    failed in his efforts to lure a real coach, failed to stand up to Mexico when their teams start crap here and has confused his responsibilities as Fed chief with those of being an MLS employee.

    Keep in mind MLS own relationship with the FMF which prevents the USSF which simply rubber stamps MLS expansion into Canada and increased foreign players in the league from doing anything.

    I keep hearing how MLS is so financially sound. Yes the finances are solid but it is not because of MLS matches per se but because of SUMs agreements with the FMF to stage friendly after friendly on US soil as well as Interliga, Superliga, etc.

  10. Angry USA Fan

    March 31, 2009 at 9:05 am

    The point being missed by many is that this was the culmination of several bad performances on the road against inferior CONCACAF opponents. Travis has summarized it above. We have looked below par against Barbados, Guatemala, Cuba, T&T, and now El Salvador on the road.

    Only the T&T performance was acceptable because we started a young team and T&T made the last World Cup. The other four performances were against smaller, unathletic teams with the technical or physical tools to compete with the US.

  11. Joey Clams

    March 31, 2009 at 8:04 am

    Geoff S:

    They shouldn’t have horrible performances in the hex. A bad night? This isn’t the NBA. They hadn’t played a game in six weeks. Everyone, including the coach, should be up for it.

    The comeback was nice. But it was forced on us.

    Come on.

  12. Geoff S.

    March 30, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Its incredible to me how much ridicule the team accrues after one horrbile performance. As a die-hard supporter I was more frusterated than anyone at the team’s performance on Saturday night, but this is the same team that has had a dream run through qualification thus far, and after a long interim period experienced one hiccup along the way. Though our disconnect and turn overs in the middle of the field were Saturday Night’s biggest problem, I look at the changes BB was forced to make to the roster. Califf at Center Back and Guzan in goal. Our back 5 (goalie included) have been incredible up to this point in the cycle, and I feel like those 2 changes created discontinuity. WE HAD A BAD NIGHT. We still sit atop the group, and there is no doubt in my mind that the team is going to come out reinvigorated on Wednesday, and after the weekends perforance, with extra motivation to perform. As bad as the game was, we did well to get the comeback result, and that point shouldn’t be understated. Our players are not world class, but most are solid. we have a tremendous work rate that allows us to be competative with anyone. The bucket argument is virtually void any time Klejstan is in the line-up, and that is one of biggest and most obvious evolutions in BBs tactics/team since before grabbing some players from last years olympic team.

    Long Story Short: We’ve been extremely consistent thus far; we made changes; we had a BAD night; we’ll play well Wednesday!

  13. eplnfl

    March 30, 2009 at 10:52 pm

    Prior to the match Kartik predicted that the Bradley haters would be out in force in the event of a negative result. For most USA fans the tie was in fact that. That maybe wrong, but it’s fact. Kartik had aslo predicted that trips into smaller Central American nations for the USA would be like walking into a hornets nest. He was right on that.

    Clearly the US went into the game with a poor game plan. However, the idea to up tempo the game and put El Salvador away early was a sound one. Yet other then to over play a bit we saw no tactical device to assist the schemel. A early deployment of 3 attackers may have broke the game open early. Yet it had to wait until we were behind by two scores.

    We are not England or Mexico and we will not and should not be in despair but we all know the USA did not come ready to play for the game and that was the most important thing to take from this game.

  14. Travis

    March 30, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    Did you really expect any different?

    We struggled to beat Barbados on the road. They had a goal called back on a suspect offsides and hit the crossbar twice.

    We managed two shots on goal at Cuba.

    We lucked out at Guatemala.

    Bradley just barely got by weaker CONCACAF teams.

    How do you expect the bucket will handle Costa Rica, Honduras and Mexico on the road.

  15. Jeff

    March 30, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    I actually care less about the line-up than I do about how they’re told to play. This is the first time when I’ve seriously questioned Bradley as the coach. You can’t really question a coach when a player makes a bad decision, or has a bad game, but the whole team looked clueless and scared to go forward when in possession, which makes one have to wonder how they were prepared for the match, what they were instructed to do.

  16. Frustrated with Bradley

    March 30, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    Can’t believe Bradley is bringing in Bornstein. It could only mean he plans to start him, otherwise why bother? Think about it, if he planned to start Spector, Beaz or Boca out left, he always has Pearce off the bench. With Bornstein being called in it can only mean him or Pearce is starting with the other one being first off the bench.

    Talk about going backwards.

  17. Are you joking?

    March 30, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    How in the world is Bornstein ahead of Orozco in the pecking order?

    Orozco is ten times the left back of Bornstein or Pearce in spite of the fact that he isn’t left footed.

    Some may bring up the Olympics red card – get over it.

    Orozco never gets beat and can actually complete a pass out of the back.

    This is what I would have gone with if I were in charge:

    Orozco – Boca – Gooch – Spector

    That should be our back line in SA unless Cherundelo fully recovers from his injury, in which case Orozco and Spector fight for the LB spot.

    I was one of the folks that though Beasley could be converted there – no longer. He looks absolutely terrible and has in the last few matches he’s appeared in.

  18. JAKE

    March 30, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    Does anyone feel like this is unamerican the way they play. Americans shouldn’t play scared, and do the bare minimum hoping to grind out a tie or a win. Americans should out work, out grit, out attack, out everything their opponents. That’s how we dominate most sports on the world stage. It’s time they fire Bradley and put in a coach who isn’t scared to lose and take risks.

  19. A-RET

    March 30, 2009 at 6:42 pm

    GREAT NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



  20. Angel

    March 30, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    well Bob Bradly never going to play a 3-5-2, or a 4-3-3 he is too discipline and too conservative. he doesn’t like to risk, he style of futball is so MLS level. We need someone like Wildemir Caberra (US17 Coach) who lets the player be more free of playing their own style with more technical and know how to keep the ball and attack. But I can tell you this, If the USA Qualify as 2nd or 3rd seed we need to request the firing of Sunil and Bob Bradley and get them fired. I’m really tired of Bob Bradley keep calling the guys that he feels very comfortable.

  21. LI Matt

    March 30, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Portugal was probably the weakest seeded team in World Cup 2002.

    Now, there is some 20/20 hindsight. After making the semis of Euro 2000, and knocking the Dutch out in qualifying, Portugal was widely considered a strong contender coming into the World Cup.

  22. Joey Clams

    March 30, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    Let’s not hold Spector’s versatility against him. If he’s the best choice at left back, we should go with him. If Hejduk gets hurt, you put Pearce and move Spector over.

    It’s time to put some studs out there one way or the other.

  23. Joseph

    March 30, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    i dont want to see kljestan or pearce for a long time based on the way they wet their pants saturday. torres came on and played like he was on the better team (something most of the starters failed to do), was composed on the ball, and drastically changed our ability to keep possession- he should be rewarded for that.

    im resigned to ching being there- cause lord knows a u.s. forwards ONLY job is to “work hard”- but at least play jozy with him. stevie wonder can see that our attack is better by multiple whole numbers when hes on the pitch.

    id like to see edu just to see how hes progressing, but im not clamoring for a start or anything.

    beasley at left back seems inevitable to me, but until theres a clearly better (or at least comparable) option in the midfield im not sure when we make that move. maybe play torres on the left of a 3 man midfield, pinched in with beasley behind him?

    other than that id just like to see spector somewhere. i agree hes not a natural fit at left back if we are looking for that position to get forward and give us width, but behind beasley i think it could work. it definitely cant be worse than pearce was saturday.

  24. Joey Clams

    March 30, 2009 at 4:57 pm


    Gulati is on the Kraft’s payroll. And, yet, he is the president of the USSF.

    The word is that anyone on the Board of Directors who votes against the inclusion of Canadian teams – and their expansion fees – , will be shunned by the league. In other words, the Federation is no longer the independent authority that it is supposed to be. And no one in the America soccer media dares raise a hand.

  25. Rob Robinson

    March 30, 2009 at 4:26 pm

    Ah, I see. Thanks for the explanation.

  26. Roger

    March 30, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    Rob Robinson-

    The bucket is two holding midfielders instead of one defensive mid and one #10. A traditional 4-4-2 look like this.


    wide mid————————————-wide mid——-

    ————————–D mid——————————



    The bucket looks like this:


    wide mid————————————-wide mid——-

    —————D Mid ———–D mid——————————



    Essentially lots of empty space up top thus all the bad giveaways in the attack.

    A horrible formation to say the least.

  27. Roger

    March 30, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Hollywood, did you watch the same game as the rest of us?

  28. Tommy

    March 30, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Kartik and Joey Clams:

    Doesn’t Gulati maintain an interest in the Revolution as an “advisor?”

    If the head of our USSF is involved in a specific team and more importantly in MLS isn’t that a conflict of interest? Is that why we have more foreign players than ever in the league and more and more teams in Canada?

  29. Tommy

    March 30, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    Why has the USSF continued to indulge MLS in its effort to turn the welfare of American soccer into a profit making machine for foreign investors including the FMF?

    Joey Clams is right on. Gulati acts like an MLS employee.

    Even worse he hired this idiot coach, who in typically MLS style throws players out on the pitch and never makes in game adjustments until it’s almost too late.

    We deserve better. But let’s not kid ourselves. Bradley is our coach for this entire cycle. Time to plan for 2014, IMO.

  30. Rob Robinson

    March 30, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    Ok, I’ll admit my ignorance. What constitutes a “bucket” formation?

  31. Joey Clams

    March 30, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Gulati has blamed the failure of the 2006 on white people,
    failed in his efforts to lure a real coach, failed to stand up to Mexico when their teams start crap here and has confused his responsibilities as Fed chief with those of being an MLS employee.

    The man needs a slap.

  32. Randy Capps

    March 30, 2009 at 2:16 pm

    Hollywood, I think we should be aiming higher than just arriving in South Africa for the World Cup.

    We’ve been qualifying. It’s about taking the next step – actually advancing from the World Cup group stage with regularity.

    Now, I don’t know if I’m for sacking Bradley at this point. But he really needs to toss the bucket and open things up a bit. It’s the only way for the U.S. to grow as a soccer program.

  33. Angry USA Fan

    March 30, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    I think the verdict is in from most US fans who actually understand this game.

    Bradley is holding us back. The USSF is torn between appeasing those who want to grow the stature of the national team and its nativist wing. Gulati doesn’t have the control it appears he has.

    Bradley was never his choice. It was forced upon him but now we are paying for it.

    Saturday was the worst US performance since Bradley took over. 70 plus minutes of bad giveaways and no imagination. Drawing the 106th ranked team in the world is MUCH worse than losing to Spain or England in what also were pathetic performances.

  34. Joey Clams

    March 30, 2009 at 1:37 pm


    Did the entirety of that performance deserve a round of applause?

    Don’t “you people” us. That team was pathetic the other night. They didn’t start playing until they had to.

    And they almost paid for it dearly. Do you choose to dispute THAT?

  35. Todd Boss

    March 30, 2009 at 1:30 pm

    another thing…………..coaching in MLS is not a pre-requisite for success in any other league or at the international level. The league so different than the rest of the world is its own self contained world.

    It’s almost criminal that the USSF which seeks to be a player on the world stage and actually wants to host a world cup would hire such nimrod.

    the aussies hired hiddink and the english sven and capello. did australia need a coach who “understood the aussie player?” duh!

    to think we deserve to host the world cup again over two better federations who are serious about their soccer.

  36. Todd Boss

    March 30, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    The USSF is to blame for this mess. They are the nimwits who promised us a world class coach and instead delivered an MLS coach. They are the ones who said 2006 wasn’t accpetable but actually have taken us a step back.

    El Salvador is the worst team in the Hexagonal. We barely beat Cuba, Barbados and Guatemala on the road with these tactics. Those zero teams won a grand total of one World Cup qualifiers not against each other in the semifinals.

    We’re going to get smoked in Costa Rica and Mexico. 2-0? 3-0? Worse? You name it. The Ticos can name their score with the bags of urine raining down on our scared players who lack imagination or the trust of bunker bod to do anything worthwhile.

  37. Hollywood (FL) Fan

    March 30, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    We’re not Mexico.

    Our fans need to stop acting like it.

    Every loss or draw even in a friendly sets off message boards and blogs.

    Seriously, it’s really immature and childish.

    Sure we didn’t play well, BUT WE GOT A POINT ON THE ROAD!

    The formula holds: draw on the road, win at home, make the World Cup easily.

    What part of that do you people not get?

  38. Phillip

    March 30, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    Can the Adu hype end until the kid plays somewhere. Seriously… I’ve nearly played as much as he has this year. All of his “great performances” have come against sub par competition over the last two years. If Adu can up his game, quit dropping like a fly looking for the foul, and go 100% every time he’s on the field I’d place him right behind the forward.

    Donovan – Bradley – Dempsey

    Then the defense however it is constructed.

  39. TTB

    March 30, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    johas, no offense but denholm is as reactionary against bradley as others are in the tank for him. he’s a glorified shock jock. sorry cannot buy anything dd says. sorry k, obviously he’s your bud but he’s all wet also.

  40. TTB

    March 30, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    pretty horrible showing if you ask me. we looked like garbage, didnt even dominate, against the worst team in the hexagonal. the only positive about this game is that hopefully bradley will realize he needs to start putting in some other players. id like to see beasley get another look at left (i know he messed up on the 2nd goal but i think he has so much potential there, sorry k can’t agree with you on him), spector in at left DM or in the center with gooch/boca, torres in the middle with bradley, donovan playing in the mid either center or outside mid, altidore up top with a speed forward with him, like davies or johnson. i think that is the age old model lineup that has proven successful years. a target forward with a speed forward, a defensive power middie with a possession player, speed on the outside mids, one power central D with a smaller smarter pair, and fast good crossing outside backs. nuff said

  41. JOHAS

    March 30, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    kartik………………………….didn’t a wise man from ESPN you used to do a show with say bradley’s bucket wasn’t worth a bucket of s#$t!

    what a wise man that la based pundit was. we didn’t know it at the time, fooled by beating up on barbados and cuba at home. we should have known when we struggled to beat both on the road. the cuba game was especially pathetic, and they deserved at minimum a point from that.

    we need to fire bradley before the confederations cup. if we take this bucket up against brazil we’ll concede three goals before you turn your head.

  42. Lawerence

    March 30, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    It doesn’t matter who starts although I have my preferences. It does not matter who plays. We need to not play scared and IMPOSE our dominance every time we step on the pitch. Control the ball in the midfield and get players forward. Ching up top by himself ain’t gonna cut it. Bradley is more at fault than ANY player you name.
    Klejstan, Califf and Pearce out, Gooch, Spector and Torres in.
    I’d also like to see Altidore in from the start-sacrifice Beasley or Ching.
    No more Long-ball bologna. Knock it around-we are the giants of CONCACAF, we dominate the minnows-I wish someone would remind BB of that-embarrassing against El Salvador. If they hadn’t lost their keeper they win 2-1 or maybe even 2-0.

  43. Ian

    March 30, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    Kartik——————you forget to mention Donovan being ruined by the bucket also. He’s a natural #10 that maybe plays a little more advanced than a traditional #10. No such positions exists in the bucket. He’s always plays in the wrong position. Either a withdrawn forward or out wide. What a freaking waste!

  44. Ian

    March 30, 2009 at 12:43 pm

    Kartik, great piece but where was this analysis Saturday night when uncharacteristically you circled the wagons and wrote a post game wrap that could have been done by the USSF press guy?

    Bradley = Arena

    In 2002 we got lucky. Four points, a crushing defeat against Poland since we setup the team for a draw, and then the luck of all luck of drawing Mexico. Also Portugal was probably the weakest seeded team in World Cup 2002. What if we had been thrown in with Turkey and Brazil like Costa Rica was? They played better than us but lost out because they ended up playing arguably the two best teams in that world cup. Turkey lost to Brazil in the semis but that game might as well have been the final.

    2006, a disaster. Bad player selection from taking nobodys like Albright and Ching to sitting back and playing just one striker.

    For all of Arena’s faults, he didn’t play two defensive midfielders at all times.

    Bradley has no business coaching at this level. He’s a glorified MLS coach. Can you imagine Brazil taking a club coach from their second division and making him national team coach? MLS is the American second division. USL the third. We don’t have a legitimate international first division now because our top players, except one are all abroad. We need a foreign coach, someone who knows this game and utilize the freakish talents of Adu, Altidore, etc. We’ve never had two players with this much potential and they are being wasted, rotting away behind the likes of Brian Ching and Rico Clark. I cannot stand it anymore. I’m going to quit writing.

  45. adam

    March 30, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    Had Bradley ever coached outside of MLS or Princeton? Seriously, how the hell could the USSF hire a guy with such a laughable resume? It’s not like when Arena was hired———————- our players can play in a much sophisticated attacking setup now.

    Will Gulati do the right thing and ax this guy after qualifying so we stand a chance in South Africa? Or are we going to embarrass ourselves on the world stage again?

  46. Joey Clams

    March 30, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    The team needs a shake-up and we’ve known it for a while. Bob is another US coach who is too sentimental and too rigid. His kid is a decent player but a time bomb. It’s time to cut some guys loose and stir in fresh blood.

    He won’t do that, though. He’ll stick with the safe choices and we’ll continue to schlepp along.

    He’ll argue that he can’t take chances on new players. He had the chance, though, and didn’t take it. His logic his perverse but Arena did the same.

    That team on Saturday night did not play football until it HAD to. It was nice to see, finally, and for that I’m glad that Sally forced it on us.

    T and T will be a test. He better have some answers.

  47. Roger

    March 30, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    I agree with all the comments and kartik’s piece. Cut the kids loose and let’s try and push forward and bury the opponents early rather than bunkering in on the road and giving hostile crowds hope.

    Bradley is a typical American coach. That’s why he was wrong for the job to begin with.

  48. Randy Capps

    March 30, 2009 at 12:24 pm

    I’m worried about our formation and tactics on the world stage as well.

    We have to shake the belief that we’re not good enough to play attractive football on the road in CONCACAF. We should cut our young players loose in a 4-3-3 and beat the El Salvadors of the world easily – home or away.

  49. Angry USA Fan

    March 30, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    Drop the bucket?

    Bradley will never do it?

    Drop Beasley or Boca?

    He’d resign first.
    Inflexibility as manager includes trying to take MLS level tactics to the international game. The formation was never going to work. It was shredded by the better teams we’ve faced. England, Spain and Argentina ripped it apart in succession. Argentina ended up a draw because of Howard making like 8 huge saves.

    Bradley’s opponents probably laugh at the US setup. If we keep this formation and the likes of Ching, Beasley and Bocanegra in the lineup we will finish in last in our group in South Africa.

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