Tag Archives: 2020

MLS Cup 2020: The Morning After



What a season, what a finish! The Columbus Crew are the champions of Major League Soccer. In a season marred by Covid-19, the Crew proved themselves worthy champions. Full disclosure: I had predicted the Seattle Sounders would repeat from the pre-season all the way to the MLS Cup Pregame. So how did Caleb Porter and Crew – without stars Darlington Nagbe and Pedro Santos – dethrone the defending champs? It came down to three things: System, Pressure, and some MAPFRE Magic.

System

Porter and the Crew employ a system where every player knows the responsibility of every other player on the pitch. When they begin to build possession from the back or when they turn over an opponent, the ball can be played to a specific area of the field given the situation. If the opposing team presses, play a ball over the top. If they hang back, take the space in the middle of the field. If they use zonal marking, overload and get a numbers advantage.

The Crew’s system allowed them to more easily overcome the loss of two starters than most other teams. (Imagine Seattle trying to play without Joao Paulo or Nico Lodeiro.) Derrick Etienne, Jr. and Aidan Morris filled in superbly, playing with the confidence that comes from this system. Continue reading MLS Cup 2020: The Morning After


Soccer and Current Events, Bundesliga Recap, CBA and MLS Orlando Tournament



Hey, soccer fans! Welcome to another episode of the Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast. Tonight, we have pleased to talk real soccer as the MLS and the MLSPA have reached a new CBA and have all but officially announced their season tournament in Orlando.

Tune in for additional conversation on:

  • Americans in the Bundesliga: How have our boys fared in Germany?
  • MLS Tournament in Orlando: What’s the format, and what do we want to get out of it?
  • All the details of the new collective bargaining agreement. Mike and Nick give their thoughts on:
    • a raise in player salaries
    • increased chartered flights
    • the impending death of TAM