Friday, February 13, 2009

Picante analysis

This is some pretty good stuff here. It's the Futbol Picante crew talking about the US-Mexico game. Good analysis.

I won't take the time to translate all of it for you English-speaking readers but I will sort of paraphrase one part towards the end.

One of the commentators talks about how, even though Mexico lost to the US again, he doesn't think the US is an equipazo, a great team. The other commentator says "They're not, but neither is Mexico."

They go back and forth. The one falls back on the security blanket many Mexican media are seemingly clinging to, and says that the US would play the same in Azteca and that Mexico would play better in Azteca, and that no matter how bad Mexico was they wouldn't lose to the US in Azteca.

The other commentator returns to the debate over the US and Mexico and brings up a question Ricardo Osorio fielded, where he said he didn't think the US was a great team. He says he would have fired back to Osorio "And what about your team?"


JLC said...

These guys are great -- consistently the best analysis of Mexican soccer you'll find anywhere.

Anonymous said...

The US isn't a great team, but they're efficient and more effective than Mexico is. The team works well as a unit and everyone on the field tends to pick up the slack when one team member isn't doing so hot. Landon Donovan might be the best player on the team, but he isn't the sole focus of it.

Mexico right now reminds me of Argentina between 1994 and 1998. When Maradona was no longer the face of the team, Argentina really struggled to find an identity. Was it a team that needed a number 10 or was it a team that could play as a unit without having an enganche? Right now Mexico has no stars, no Blanco, no Borgetti, no Aspe. It needs to somehow find a way to play as a unit and forget about replacing the stars of the past.

Anonymous said...

The old guy seems to have a rationl and objective opinion. The mullet wearing old guy and the rest seems a bit like apologists.

Anonymous said...

You might think I'm crazy, but this game is reason enough for me to send more good Mexican players to MLS if I were the FMF.

The idea here is a long-term plan to help America raise its level of play, which in turn raises the level of all who reside in CONCACAF. I am of the opinion that both sides need to be as strong as possible for either side to achieve true greatness. LB - there's a great article to be had in this idea, if you agree with me.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how that would help Mexico. The Mexican league has more money than MLS, and not only that but young Mexicans would miss out playing in Copa Libertadores. Their league isn't the problem. Torres and Orozco have done just fine playing in Mexico. What is a problem is what one of the commentators on Futbol Picante said, the US has done a better job developing youth players through consistency and organization. Mexico has never really focused on developing youth players and transitioning them into the senior team the way the US has for the past 20 years. Now Mexico is looking to play catch up.

Anonymous said...

only one guy on there is rational everyone else says the US is A good team. but the argunebt that Mexico Man for Man is more talented makes me laugh. Sure vela and dos santos are good. Well vela is miles better then dos santos. but your going to tell me that osvaldo is better than tim howard. Mexico has talent but not every position they play has talented players. It seems like they are making excuses as to why mexico lost. Same ol story the only gut who is consistantly rational is the guy who said he asked sinha about the US. Zinha says they arent brazil. Commentator then says and what Mexico is? loved that. they Man is finally telling mexican media and fans to be more objective about their team and opponents. it isnt the concacaf of 15 years ago anyore. Costa rica and honduras are going to be tough opponents at home and away

Anonymous said...

My "listening Spanish" isn't as good as my reading, but it sounds to me like the same old, same old from the Mexican commentators. US are robots/machines, solid/fundamentally sound, but not as good as Mexico technically. We just made some mistakes and they capitalized. We'll win in Azteca. Blah blah blah. Denial is a long river.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the last two posters know any Spanish, especially since Zinha wasn't the one that said, "the US aren't Brazil."

I think the guys were actually very rational. At no point do they say Mexico is a great team. In fact they rail on Mexico the whole time and one of them even says that the US is the better team. Plus, saying that Mexico has better technical players than the US isn't denial. The US didn't play attractive soccer out there, they played very effective but simple soccer. But as one of the commentators in the video said, that's all you really need. They actually praise the US for the fact that they have the fundamentals of soccer nailed down, while Mexico doesn't.

To me US fans that try to look for something negative in that commentary is pretty pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Les entendí bastante bien, compay, well enough to know that yes, they were disappointed in the Mexican side, there was still the underlying air that Mexico have better players. Having followed Mexican futbol for over 35 years, I know that this has was absolutely true for most of those 35, but not so much now---if you thought the Mexican players on Wed night showed better technical skill than the US players, we must have seen different matches. Technical ability and flair are two different things. The US does not play with obvious individual flair, but then again flair = Colombia '94, and we see where that went.

Anonymous said...

I don't think their message that Mexico has better players, but that Mexico has players that could play better but don't. I do agree with you that saying man for man Mexico has more talented players than the US isn't true.

I don't think Mexico has a defensive mid who is as effective or as talented as Michael Bradley. Not Torrado, and definitely not Augusto, or in goal as you previous mentioned. I also think we might have better defenders, but I think Johnny Magallon would have done a better job out there than Galindo. But for some positions I do think Mexico does have some better talent, like Guardado, Castillo, Vela, and even Dos Santos. That said, that doesn't mean that Mexico has a better team.

I also don't get why some US fans get annoyed when people don't think the US has good technical players. Do you think Germans lose sleep over the fact that they've always been labeled "robots" or for having an excellent work ethic over being called a strong technical side? Of course not because they have three World Cups to prove that the way they play works. Sorry but I still believe Mexico has better technical players than the US, and that's not a knock on the US because whatever we're doing, it's working so it shouldn't matter if we look like robots doing it.

Jon E. said...

I thought this was pretty sharp, even-handed analysis. FWIW, they were questioning whoever (Osorio?) said that the US were a bunch of robots.

Actually, I thought the robot comment was pretty revealing. In tennis, John McEnroe used to say the same thing about Ivan Lendl. And there was some truth to it. But what Lendl did worked very well for him, even against McEnroe, and it would have been foolish for him to radically change his game to get more "flair."

As all the Picante commentators were saying, whatever Mexico is doing now ISN'T working for them. It's like they're playing not to their strengths but instead to what they want to believe are their strengths.

And when you do that, you end up being as petulant as McEnroe but not anywhere near as successful.

Anonymous said...

Spot on Jon E. I feel that some US fans desperately want the world to be wowed by our players' skills. They want people to say that we have players who are as skilled as those from Argentina, Brazil, Italy, etc. But we don't have players like that, and guess what, who cares.

I've been watching soccer for almost 30 years now, and I don't think I've ever been wowed by a single German player in my entire life, and to be honest, I've never liked the way they've played. But does that mean their players suck and aren't worth a damn? Nope, they're playing to their strengths and it's won them World Cups and Euro Cups.

I feel the same way about the US. I'm a US supporter, but I can be honest in saying that there have been few games that I can say the US was outstanding technically. But I'll take athleticism, discipline, and work ethic if it wins us games over technique and flair.