Tag Archives: Friendlies

Chicago and Miami Hire Coaches (Finally!) and USMNT Roster Review



Greetings once again, soccer fans! Welcome back to The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast. In this episode, we discuss the latest coaching hires in Major League Soccer (MLS) and review the latest United States Men’s National Team (USMNT) roster.

Chicago Fire FC have hired Raphael Wicky as their latest manager. He brings a solid resume, having coached FC Basel in Switzerland and most recently had a 9 month stint as the U-17 USYNT coach. He should bring a higher degree of technical ability and sound tactics back to Chicago, and fans can expect a disciplined team. But can they expect to win? For that, they’ll need to sign some DPs, which may come from Germany based on the hiring of the new technical and sporting directors. Tune in for the details!

Inter Miami CF have hired Diego Alonso, a coach that has bounced around Mexico and South America, but has had recent success in Concacaf Champions League (CCL). While that’s certainly appealing to MLS clubs, hopefully Alonso has a plan to qualify for CCL and not bottom out like recent expansion teams. However with his playing and coaching experience, he should fit in well with the Latin-influenced roster of Inter Miami.

Speaking of rosters, Gregg Berhalter has announced a group of young MLS players for the USMNT January camp. The next generation of talent has the opportunity to impress in friendlies against Costa Rica and the Netherlands, with more games sure to be announced. Let’s temper our expectations for results and just enjoy some fresh faces in the USMNT camp.

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September Call-ups, Expansion Update, and League Roundup



Welcome back to another episode of The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast. Tonight, we’re covering both the United States Men’s National Team (USMNT) as they prepare for September friendlies and all the latest news from around Major League Soccer (MLS).

Gregg Berhalter and US Soccer released their roster for the USMNT friendlies vs. Mexico (9/6) and Uruguay (9/10), and there certainly were some surprises. No Toronto FC players made the squad, much to the ire of Michael Bradley (though Berhalter says it was to help TFC make the MLS playoffs). Fans of American youth will be happy to see Sergino Dest and Josh Sargent on the roster. And listeners of the podcast will be disappointed that Daniel Lovitz has again taken a roster spot than should be used to develop some young talent. The Montreal Impact defender has mostly ridden the bench, but Berhalter continues to include him on the roster. Meanwhile, we are excited at the possible pairing of Christian Pulisic and Josh Sargent, and the duo could provide the offense that the US roster has lacked.

Next, Nick and Mike provide an update on expansion teams Inter Miami (who are they linked to now!?), St. Louis MLS (not the USL club, this is different, it’s not a promotion), and Nashville SC (now with new DP signing Hany Mukhtar!). Finally, they round up all the action from this week’s slate of MLS games, including those with major playoff implications: Philly beats Atlanta, Loons over LAFC, and Seattle defeat the Galaxy.

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USMNT Friendlies vs. Ecuador and Chile and MLS Week 4 Roundup



Hello again, soccer fans! We hope you enjoyed the USMNT action to offset the short MLS schedule this weekend. We at the Sons of a Pitch certainly enjoyed seeing all the names and faces of the future of US Soccer this week.

In their 3rd game under coach Gregg Berhalter, the United States Men’s National Team played a controlling game against Ecuador, but only had a 1-0 victory to show for it. In the next game against Chile, the USMNT had a difficult time beating the high press and were on the back-foot most of the game. Despite that, they held on for a 1-1 draw. Our biggest takeaways are the continued implementation of Coach GGG’s system and the integration of the European based players, and the building of a winning culture. We really say was Adams, McKennie, and Pulisic can do together, but we also saw the flaws in letting wing-backs push too far up the field.

Rising Stock: Zardes-1 goal, 1 assist in last 2 games; Trapp-the smartest guy on the field;

Falling Stock: Baird-who was non-existent; Lovitz-who looked lost; Ream-who still makes that one, dumb play every game

Meanwhile in a less than full slate of Major League Soccer games, the headlines could read:

  • FC Dallas keeps taking points
  • Orlando City finally get a win
  • LAFC get another stoppage time victory – this time courtesy of some Walker Zimmerman brilliance
  • FC Cincinnati win again, turning critics into bandwagon fans
  • At least one New England is terrible: the Revolution are in complete disarray

Thanks for listening, and be sure to join the conversation in the comments below or on twitter @SOPSoccer.


USMNT vs. Ecuador and Chile: Roster Breakdown, U-23 Coaching Hire



Hello soccer fans, and welcome to a special USMNT episode of The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast.

While the United States Men’s National Team (USMNT) have prepared for friendly matches vs. Ecuador and Chile, our hosts have prepared an analysis of Gregg Berhalter’s squad. Breaking down each position player pool, Nick and Mike discuss the strengths of each player, expected line-ups, and what they expect out of the match. While still relatively young and inexperienced, the USMNT needs to develop both tactics and a winning culture.

In other national team news, the U-23 USMNT squad have hired Jason Kreis as their new coach. Mike thinks this is a great move, and getting someone who’s played and coached at various levels in the United States is a big advantage. As the youth squad prepares for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, Kreis’ direction of the team and continued development of players like Weah, Carter-Vickers, Mihailovic, and Robinson will be key.

What do you expect from the friendly matchups? Who are you excited to see put on the Red, White, and Blue? Follow us on twitter @SOPSoccer or leave us a message in the comments below.

USMNT SCHEDULE:

March 21, 2019 8 PM ET MNT vs Ecuador Orlando City Stadium; Orlando, FL
March 26, 2019 7:55 PM ET MNT vs Chile BBVA Compass Stadium; Houston, Texas

Ep. 31 – Roster Review: USMNT Fall Friendlies



The United States Men’s National Team has some big games coming up, and the roster has been released. Big names are making way for developing talent, and we break down the pool of players selected for each position. For a full roster listing, check out US Soccer.

  • Who would you rather see starting as goalkeeper: Bono or Steffan or Horvath?
  • Is a European based back-line better situated to compete internationally?
  • Should Bobby Wood get another chance?

These questions and more are answered by our hosts. Thanks for tuning in!

 

And apologies to Andrija Novakovich for mis-pronouncing his name … badly.


Ep 17 – USMNT vs. Ireland, France Recap



The USMNT finished their pre-World Cup friendlies against a solid UEFA opponent in Ireland and a World Cup favorite in France. Oddly, they lose to Ireland 2-1 and draw France 1-1 The hosts break down the goals and the line-ups, and discuss the future of the USMNT players and coaches. Wil Trapp captained the team amid speculation of a move from Columbus to Europe. Bill Hamid and Zack Steffen started in goal, and the hosts discuss how Steffen and Alex Bono are the keepers of the future.

Also, the United Bid of Canada, USA, and Mexico won the right to host World Cup 2026. The news came the morning after our recording, and we at Sons of a Pitch are very excited to watch the greatest players in the world in our backyard (albeit in 8yrs or so).

What are your thoughts on the USMNT roster and coaching candidates? Are you done seeing Jozy Altidore and Bobby Wood, like Nick? Do you want a European style coach, like Mike? Let us know in the comments below.