Thursday, July 05, 2007

Argentina 1-0 Paraguay: Players' ratings

ABBONDANZIERI: Looked safe for the first time in this Copa America. Didn't have much to do, but made a couple of crucial and difficult saves. Good game to gain some confidences. 7/10

IBARRA: Struggled. Not the dominant figure he is for Boca. Improved in the second half showing an option advancing on the right, but was not enough to push ZANETTI for the starting spot against Peru. 5/10

BURDISSO: Wasn't really tested. I don't recall a single important play in which he had to intervene. 6/10

Daniel DIAZ: CATA was a little bit more active than BURDISSO, but still, a very quiet game for both of our central defenders. To give this couple the credit they deserve, I have to say that they made me feel safe. 6/10

ZANETTI: Man of the match. If MESSI was on the field a little bit more, he could have taken home that prize, but PUPI was the best throughout the whole 90 minutes. Did everything right, even when he was moved to the left for the first time in this Copa. 8/10

GAGO: Did OK. Suffered a lot of fouls and that speaks volumes of his importance in the middle. He can control the ball and give the team a solid start in the creative process. Had a decent shot that went over the bar in the first half, then faded a little bit in the second. 6/10

Lucho GONZALEZ: Had his moments. Sent a couple of good balls to the box and connected well with Carlitos and sometimes with AIMAR. Not a great game. Not a bad one. 6/10

CAMBIASSO: I liked his display, but he is not gravitating that much. He's caught in the middle and he is not a clear defensive midfielder or an offensive one. 5/10

AIMAR: Not even close to what he showed against the USA in our debut, when he came in as a sub. Tried to find an opening through the middle but couldn't. Never find his game and was anonymous at times, though he never stopped trying and he helped when we didn't have the ball. 5/10

PALACIO: Showed movement and pace. Hit the bar and was involved in a lot of our attacking plays. But couldn't quite really have an influence on either the game or the result. 6/10

TEVEZ: Very active, as always. He has the goal between his eyes and was denied by the post. Not quite the CARLITOS we know he can be and was a victim of a solid Paraguayan display. 6/10

MASCHERANO: Didn't play that much, but that goal alone is worth an 8/10 performance.

MESSI: The X-Factor we needed. Was sent to the pitch to change the game and help us win the match and did just that. Brilliant. Our diamond! 8/10

AYALA: Just got in to get another cap (hahaha!) and to add numbers to our back line.


Copa America Blog said...

mira el golazo en animacion

Rio said...

Palacio 7
His job is to rest level one forward subs. I like his performances for Boca, but can't say he's on the same level with his NT teammates.

Tevez 8.5
Without a goal, 8 is probably highest score a forward could get. But on top of the usually good performance from Tevez today, he also showed exceptional reflexes and the ability to make lighting fast decisions. He is on top of his game. His goalless effort has a lot to do with the Paraguayan 8 men defense. Tevez should be awarded an 8.5 IMO.

Aimar 7
Aimar made a few brilliant passes tonight, but not quite enough. He also had trouble protecting the ball from Paraguayan midfielders. Aimar led the offense into a 70 minute long assult on a good defense today and had limited success, I'm afraid 7 is all I could spare on him.

Lucho 5.5
Again, Lucho is there because Maxi just recovered from his injury and Basile wanted to protect his players.

Messi 8
He's always marked. Then he takes the hits, get up, and create more chances. Messi is such a fighter. And more importantly, we see improvements in Messi EVERY GAME. That's just unbelievable.

Cambiasso 8.5
Did you see Cuchu's pass from on top of the box? Did you see him making connections at positions above Aimar? In the past 2 reviews I've criticized Cuchu's lack of creativity in his plays. He showed much improvements today and deserved a good score.

Gago 6.5
Gago's performance just wasn't satisfying. Positive notes on him include: 2 beautiful plays and 1 that the stupid ref called a foul; Some good attempts on distribution eventhough the best one did not go through.
Gago has not had enough playing time in Real Madrid, I hope his situation could see some changes soon.

Mascherano 10
That's right, first 10 in this tournament. Well deserved.

Zanetti 9
Zanetti is an Ironman. And he's a true 2 footed iron man. Wow, am I impressed with this old tractor (Trattore)! Pekerman's biggest mistake in his selection was not picking Zanetti.

Diaz 8
Good form. Made the box defending looked easy. Smooth game, more than fulfilled our expectations.

Burdisso 8
Eventhough Burdisso got a yellow today. He's done well. The 3 seperate sequences of box defense were done almost perfectly. These 2 are World Class Players.

Ibarra 8
Part of this solid defense. Great patience and well executed clears. However, Ibarra was a little shaky on one occassion, but Pato got it, no fault for anyone.

Ayala ~

Pato 8.5
Excellent keeping. Although we didn't face much real threat tonight, Pato was awake and ready. Blocked out the only good shot Paraguayan put out, clean sheet.

game review

niraj said...

guys guys...
tevez seems almost set to join man u..if the legal battles settles...just search news abt him in google and its full of manu...
so will it be good or bad?
comments plz

Saurabh said...

A good result for us.

I thought Palacio was good and he worked hard. But he is not a No.9 as Seba pointed out earlier and it clearly showed.

But in spite of few cases of giving away possession too cheaply, the midfield worked incredibly well.

and Seba, it was great to see the team celebrate Mascherano's goal.....and even Roman looked delighted :)

John said...

I personally believe it is a good move.

I wouldn’t want to argue with Sir Alex FERGUSSON ability to work with youngsters after all the likes of BECKHAM, SCHOLES, GIGGS, BUTT and the NEVILLE Brothers were his own entire making.

Now with CARLITOS set join on board with the likes ROONEY, RONALDO, NANI and ANDERSON, he is doing all over again.

Anonymous said...

I thought Aimar didn"t play too bad .Lucho didn"t play well .Messi again was amazing .He did very well and he turned the game into the leading side.Pato showed he deserve the NO 1 of Argentinian goalkeeper
PS Congratulation to Mascherano for the 1st goal

Rio said...

aimar played ok but proved ineffective against the brick wall paraguay put up.
also, he gave up like 4 possessions? from arguing about fouls. then was it gago doing it too and almost let one of their counter attack developed.

out first team shouldn't have as much problem penetrating it. really not that much chance created for this much possession.

alwin said...

Hi Guys,

The important this is that we made it to face PERU. Now we need to cope with FARFAN, GUERERO and PIZARRO from whom i think are the main threats. Can our defence cope with them? If not we would need to rely on the forwards getting more goals than we conceed, which i think is possible against a shaky PERU defence.

As for TEVEZ, im really a happy for him and finally he will lighten up the champions league, bring on GATUSSO, lets see how he copes with CARLITOS!!! I can't contain my joy and boy oh boy i ca nonly see MAN UTD running berserk next season with so many attacking talents from which like mentioned by JOHN are all younsters. Way to go FERGUSON, you will not be dissappointed.


Gonzo said...

the league 'might' block carlos from going to man u if the money goes to joorabchian and not west ham so dont get too excited.

Seba said...

Here are OLE's players' ratings.

We don't agree with ZANETTI getting a 6. We have the same note for MASCHE and MESSI. And we gave low notes to AIMAR and CAMBIASSO.

Let's compare:

R. Abbondanzieri (7): Le tapó un buen remate a Cabañas en el primer tiempo y otro a López en el segundo. También estuvo seguro de arriba.

Hugo Ibarra (4,5): Estuvo más contenido que Zanetti y se soltó en el segundo tiempo. No llevó peligro y lo complicaron las gambetas de Cuevas.

Nicolás Burdisso (5): Mostró autoridad y concentración pero dio algunas ventajas. De arriba no ganó como lo hace Ayala.

Daniel Díaz (5): Más parado que Milito, fuerte en el anticipo. Sin la velocidad de Gaby para ganar en el pie a pie con los puntas rivales. Le costó controlar al potente Cabañas.

Javier Zanetti (6): Correcto y con la potencia habitual. El perfil cambiado le quitó desborde, siempre jugó hacia adentro. Igual, fue más útil que Heinze para salir y avanzar.

Lucho González (3,5): Aunque llegó al fondo más que Verón, no colaboró en la creación y dejó desprotegido a Ibarra. En el segundo tiempo despareció.

Fernando Gago (7): Bien ubicado en el centro de la cancha, rápido para tocar y mostrarse. Muy preciso. También metió un derechazo que pasó cerca del ángulo derecho de Bobadilla. Sin el despliegue ni la capacidad de marca de Mascherano, tuvo presencia.

E. Cambiasso (4,5): La pelota no pasó tan seguido por sus pies como en los partidos anteriores porque el mediocampo jugó a otro ritmo, más vertiginoso. Igual mantuvo su claridad.

Pablo Aimar (4,5): Arrancó impreciso. No fue líder ni determinante como Riquelme. Se ubicó más adelante, aceleró y trató de profundizaro o gambetear casi siempre. erró más de lo que acertó.

Rodrigo Palacio (5): Sólo desequilibró en algunas ocasiones por los costados y metió un par de centros. Cuando se cerró, chocó. A Messi, en cambio, tienen que chocarlo para pararlo. Pegó un derechazo en el travesaño.

Carlos Tevez (6): Bien de espaldas y generalmente recostado sobre la izquierda. Sale mucho más del área que Crespo y Milito. Desde más atrás, fue el que más probó al arco: una pegó en el palo.

J. Mascherano (8): No sólo corre y marca. Se paró de ocho y convirtió un golazo, de crack.

Lionel Messi (8): En un rato, cambió el hilo del juego. Explosión y gambeta

Seba said...

Alwin, I wouldn't be too worried about Peru's attacking strenght...Jefferson FARFAN is out with an injury.

GUERRERO and PIZARRO are, no doubt, very good players. But I'd rather be BASILE than URIBE these days.

We are hot favorites to win on Sunday and even the Peruvians know it.

My only concern is general. From now on, it'll be 90 minutes and if there's no winner, then...straight to penalties!

That could punish us if we have another close game like last night, where the goal don't want to show up...

johnny said...

Johnny's first ever player ratings (Sound the trumpets !):

PATO-7. Not tested much, but few mistakes and no disasters.

IBARRA-6. At age 34(?) is starting to lose a step. Can be beat. Helluva guy though.

BURDISSO-6. Hardly noticeable. Maybe that's good and maybe that's bad.

CATA DIAZ-6.5. Fair performance. Not his usual standard. He likes to play up the pitch with ability to quickly retreat, but almost got burned once.

ZANETTI-9. Looked like a man among boys at times. Great defensively and broke down the defense with long runs.

GAGO-7. I thought he played well. Handled the ball alot with only a few miscues. Marked well. With a little luck might have scored.

LUCHO-5.5. Had many chances to get things done but little results. Too quick to shoot from outside. I don't see him challenging Veron. Maybe another tattoo would help.

CAMBIASSO-6.5. Steady as she goes. Tough to grade sometimes. Moved the ball well at times and not bottled up. Still not the offensive threat I would like to see.

AIMAR-6. Looked frustrated and impatient. Didn't mesh well with Palacio and Tevez. Some flashes of his talent. He doesn't seem to adjust well to a "half court" game.

PALACIO-7. Very active, nice runs, dangerous at times. Still a "corner collector". Unlucky that his screamer didn't dip in at the last moment.

TEVEZ-7. Typical Carlitos. Always out for bear and trying to break down the defense and SCORE. Again unlucky with the palo shot.

MASCHERANO-9. Coco's secret scoring option ! What can you say about Masche ? Remains our best defender, smart, no nonsense, and now well on his way to challenging for the all time scoring leader.

MESSI-8.5. Instant offense. A huge pain in the ass for the opposition. He requires so much attention from the defense that it frees other players. Like Ginobli, but better.

AYALA-8. Coco's last minute addition of glue to the defense.

COCO-10. So far he has made all the right moves. 3-0, everybody gets to play and stay happy. Kudos to Coco for being Coco and providing inspiration and tactical know how.

Seba said... would be the good cop and I'll be your opposite act!

You're giving 8's away too cheaply! hahaha!

MASCHE with a 9 is understandable.


He hardly touch the ball. His deodorant hardly had to work!

I enjoyed your ratings!

johnny said...

Seba-Heck, I thought I was being too tough ! Yes, an 8 for Ayala was indicative of my joy at starting to get over my cold ! Rio's the one being the "good cop" ! Do you get a present from Lucho every Christmas ??!! Maxi makes him look like a rented mule ! Ha! Ha! Hey, the blog and all the responses from around the world is great fun ! BTW, I was following the NYTimes blog and the lame jackasses folded up their tent and left right after the Colombia vs. USA match ! I guess they brought their "B" team like the USA did ! What a shame that they didn't stay active for the entire tournament. Another indication of the poor status of soccer in the USA.

Rio said...

such low scores!
i think ole is ignoring the fact this team without real practice was attacking a 8 men wall, and not only did they not hurt themselves by getting burned, they achieved limited success.
the defense did an exceptionally good job, and ole gave them 4s because they're subs.

but then again, what's new. ole is filled with journalists that aren't football professionals. and they just get manipulated like any other stereotype 'fans'.

johnny said...

They gave Gago a higher score than Zanetti. Granted, I thought Gago played surprisingly well, but better than Zanetti ? So whaddaya think Rio, does Coco go back to the complete original starting lineup Sunday, minus Crespo ? Do you think he would entertain the thought of relacing G. Milito with Diaz or Burdisso ?

Rio said...

gago did ok in the second half. but his mistakes earlier were VERY OBVIOUS because the team in general was moving the ball very smoothly, you know what i mean?
and when gago stopped to complain to the ref, he almost let our defense get burned. that was unacceptable. I think gago's losing his touch. he's not played enough in real madrid. the gago back in boca would make ever banega looked like 2nd rated player.

So was aimar. The ball was transiting very smoothly, then when it gets to aimar in the middle, on several occasions it would stop, and aimar would get caught, then he goes complaining to the ref...

ole clearly showed bad knowledge in strategy with their defense rating. I tell you why they rated the defense low. because it was not pushing up like the usual case in 4-3-1-2. also the wing backs weren't going for width a whole lot, especially ibarra (therefore even lower score from them)

they failed to understand that's exactly what we wanted them to do. to not get burnt by paraguayan counter attacks. the 3 sub + 1 semi out of position defense was so mature it was impressive.

we'll see the usual against peru. once scored basile can put in his offensive upgrades, then floodgate will open....