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A Few Minutes With Tom Soehn

[UPDATE: I'm hearing that rookie defender Anthony Peters, a 6-foot-5 developmental player who didn't make much of an impression, has been waived, leaving DCU with two roster openings.]

What do you expect from the amateur Ocean City Barons tomorrow?

"I know they are going to come out hungry and be energetic. It always helps to come into a game like this and get [a goal] early, but you never know with these kind of games. It's a chance for us to get some fresh legs on the field for guys who haven't gotten minutes and I don't think the hunger level will drop off because they know the importance of getting on the game-day roster [in league play.] Guys get to show they belong on the field, so it's a statement game for them too."

Have you driven home the point that these games can't be taken lightly?

"I've been sharing that message with them. Not only myself, but there are guys on this team who have gone through it. It's a tournament setup, so that even the little guys have a chance."

Much more on the continuation.....

Have you been able to do much Ocean City preparation?

"Not really. I think we're going to focus on the things we do well and let them adjust to us. They can probably do a little better job preparing for us, but I have no video of them. Nothing. I got some clips, and in the end, I've looked at their roster and that didn't help a whole lot either. Hungry college guys is what you are going to see."

Any trialists at training?

"Not yet."

After Louis Crayton's release, are you comfortable with just two full-time goalkeepers in training?

"Yeah, there are a lot of teams that do it. As far as repetitions are concerned, it's great to have three, but we can utilize our academy guys for that too. In the event that we feel comfortable with the two that we have, that's also an option" and add a field player instead of a third goalie.

With Dejan Jakovic away, how important is it for someone to fill that central defensive void?

"This team is built so we don't fall off far if something is missing, and it's another chance for someone to step in and do the role."

Okay Insider loyalists, given the injuries and absences, what do you think DCU's starting lineup will look like tomorrow night? Kocic, Janicki, McTavish, Khumalo, N'Silu, Barklage?

By Steve Goff  |  June 29, 2009; 12:14 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United , U.S. Open Cup  
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Next: ESPN's World Cup Gameplan

Comments

I don't think I'd ever admit to not having any tape of my opponent...

Posted by: cray | June 29, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I don't think I'd ever admit to not having any tape of my opponent...

Posted by: cray | June 29, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

----------------

Yeah, why do so when a blatant bald faced lie about the glaringly obvious is an option that is still on the table?

Posted by: Kosh2 | June 29, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

We definately look young (weak) upfront. No Quaranta, Moreno or Emilio. That leaves Khumalo or N'Silu who have not impressed me yet, and Pontius. Other than that we should be fine. Maybe a little light in midfield, but enough for who we are playing. On defense Janicki will do fine. We might have to switch to 4-4-2 in order to cover for the lack of forawrds and midfielders. 4-5-1 could work moving Pontious as a withdrawn forward, but that means Khumalo or N'Silu actually have to do something more than run.

Posted by: bighungry | June 29, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Goff- SBI is reporting interest in Clark and Davies any confirmation on your end?

Posted by: bighungry | June 29, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

big time player with two openings?

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | June 29, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Time for a new leftback and forward! That #2 spot on the allocation list is looking mighty good right about now.

Posted by: jason1551 | June 29, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Any word on what our two Brasilian's thought of the Confed. Cup final? Would be interested to hear their take.

Please, no big player signings. The team is improved remarkably this season with a solid draft and otherwise unheralded players. Unless we can get a Kaka or a steal, no thanks.

Posted by: delantero | June 29, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone get invited to lunch today?

From today's WSJ coverage of Sunday's game:

"C'mon, you believed. They seduced you. The United States soccer team was up 2-0 on Brazil at halftime in the Confederations Cup final Sunday, and you were all in. You'd painted your face red, white and blue and yelled out your window, "Lan-don Don-o-van!" You were online searching out cheap tickets to next year's World Cup in South Africa. You were even going to take the Office Soccer Guy to a celebratory lunch today. (You know, Office Soccer Guy -- the poor guy at work that everyone's afraid to ask about the English Premier League, unless they have an hour and a half to spare.)

* * * * *

But this is why they play 90 minutes, plus the extra stuff. Anyone who wasn't entertained by this soccer match cannot be trusted with a television remote. Now be sure to take the Office Soccer Guy to lunch today. He (or she) deserves some love."

Posted by: OWNTF | June 29, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

------- Khumalo - N'Silu
------------- Barklage
Wallace - Simms - Jacobson - McTavish
------- John - Janicki - Namoff
---------------- Kocic

I'm a little wary of having to use Simms and Namoff here, but we only have so much depth. This team is a bit defense-oriented in midfield, but they should be able to keep the Barons off the scoreboard while creating at least a few chances. This is a good opportunity for Barklage and Khumalo (in particular, I think Khumalo's off-the-ball play and energy will cause problems). It also gives a rest to some guys who could use it (Pontius, Gomez, Olsen). If things go well, we can rest Simms by bringing DiRaimondo on, and the same could apply for Namoff if we move McTavish back and fill his spot with a sub (likely Pontius). If we find ourselves tied or losing, we can go for broke with our big name subs. This worked last year, when Moreno came in against Chicago and changed the momentum before assisting Namoff's headed winner.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | June 29, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

As far as repetitions are concerned, it's great to have three, but we can utilize our academy guys for that too.

Interesting to finally read that.

Posted by: sitruc | June 29, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

big time player with two openings?

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | June 29, 2009 1:37 PM |
--------------------------------------------------

I refuse to touch that line. I'm bigger than that.

Posted by: fischy | June 29, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

fischy...you bad! You do be bad!!

Posted by: Kosh2 | June 29, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Chest- I love this game for Barklage also. And with your midfield, I could definitely see us keeping the Barons off the board.

But I think we need to start Pontius ahead of either Khumalo or N'Silu. I don't trust those two together. Khumalo is fast and creative but rarely scores. N'Silu is talented but seems to have a hard time reading the play so he might be at a loss working with Boyzzz and Barklage. With Pontius's positioning and understanding of the game, we should win this one 2-0.

Posted by: DCUMD | June 29, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

You sure you wanna start Pontius with a league game on Saturday? If Soehn did that, I'd wanna see him come off after the first half.

Posted by: Juan-John | June 29, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

DCUMD - I have exactly the opposite take on N'Silu; I think he's looked best when he's playing off of Khumalu. It might be that they get a lot of practice time on the scout squad, and so they've learned each other, or it might be in my head.

Given the injury/call-up situation, our depth is going to be pushed to the max. I like Chest's lineup (esp. Barklage), but I think you give Clyde a rest so he can track GBS in Columbus on the weekend.

Kocic
Namoff Janicki John
Jacobson McTavish
Pontius Wallace
Barklage
N'Silu Khumalu

With the injuries and the slog coming on, let's test our depth as best we can and give as many players as possible a run out tomorrow, and then something more resembling a First XI against the Crew, who are looking more and more decent as the season wears along (as of now, they're better than United on a PPG basis...)

Posted by: TheAMT | June 29, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I hope we never see John again.

Janicki will have to do in Jakovic's absence.

This a great opportunity for Barklage, who has plenty of ability going forward, and if developed, might be able to play as a central midfielder. He seems capable of defending, shows strategic awareness.

The problem with Pontius is I don't know if he's better im the midfield (around others) or alone up top. The last game suggests the former, but maybe he just needs time.

Gomez seemed lost in the 4-4-2. He works best in tight space, with the element of surprise.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | June 29, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

While Khumalo still leaves a bit to be desired, I feel that he has brought good energy off the bench the few times we've seen him this year. He looked pretty good against NYRB, frequently getting behind their LB ... but then again it is the Red Bulls. N'Silu has shown flashes. And Barklage has scored in both Open Cup qualifiers, so he looks to be a lock. Maybe we'll see Gomez as a sub.

Posted by: IrishCR | June 29, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Juan-John: I'd start Pontius, even though we have a league match on Saturday. The league match on Saturday isn't as important. Saturday is a tougher opponent, to be sure; but honestly, it doesn't hurt us that much if we lose. This is an elimination match. Being eliminated would suck; being eliminated by a PDL team would be the most humiliating result this team has ever had in its entire existence (yes, more humiliating than the 5-0 loss at Pumas, or the collapse against Catholica, or the 4-0 playoff loss to Chicago).

Posted by: christopher_a_metzler | June 29, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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