Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Bolivia 6-1 Argentina: Dave's player ratings

Just like we did for the match against Venezuela, we're publishing Dave's player ratings.

Here's what our man in Albany, New York, has to say about the players' performances from today's disastrous match.

If you're not an Argentina player, you'll enjoy these player ratings even when the grades each and every footballer got is way below sea-level.



Dave. P:

Wow! Terrible performance all around on everybody’s end. The altitude was definitely a reason why we were tired and did not have enough air in our lungs but still to lose 6-1 with such a skillful and talented team is very unbelievable. That being said I will attempt to
bring up any positives by our players although they are very microscopic if any. We will have to see how Maradona bounces back from this lose and what changes if any he makes to fire up the Albiceleste playing back on normal altitude grounds.

Player Ratings

CARRIZO: 2.5- A little shaky at the beginning of the match but settles in for a couple minutes of the barrage from distance from the Bolivians. The first goal was close range and could do nothing about it. He had some incredible saves from distance but poor reactions from close range, which is not entirely his fault but the defenses. The blunder he had was what unfortunately turned into a PK for Bolivia, and what was he thinking with that attempt to fake out the Bolivian attacker. Also, poor reaction on the last goal that Bolivia scored, not what you would expect from the #1 Argentine goalkeeper. I will not give up on him yet but if he has another poor performance then bring in Romero or Ustari when they are back from injury. Maybe Maradona will bench him in the next games because he probably wont be starting for Lazio either.

ZANETTI: 2- The curious case of Javier was definitely a curious case. He played so well and confident against Venezuela, but today was making every mistake possible. Never made any attacking run, clipped the legs of the player blatantly for the PK, and was last getting back
for two of Bolivia’s goals. If there were any games that showed Zanetti being to old to play, this game was it. Again, I am not jumping ship on Zanetti he has pure talent, is a rock, but he got beat
far to many times today.

DEMICHELIS: 3.5- The best defender on the day which is not saying much at all. Had a few strong challenges and cool calm moves in the back. Was very unlucky that the first goal was scored because of a deflection that fell right into the path of the Bolivian attack. Like Zanetti was late coming back and caught off guard for 2 other of Bolivia’s goals. Seemed to be a bit confused…what happened the Demichelis we saw vs. France.

HEINZE: 2.5- Nothing too ridiculous from Heinze this game, but much like the other defenders was caught flat from the start and seemed confused with how to play defense the entire game. You can’t question his heart though, you could see the passion in his face with everything he was doing and hustled the entire 90 minutes, no reward though. Again like Zanetti and Demi was caught out of position on the ball over the top that put Bolivia up 5-1.

PAPA: 3- Hustle, hustle, hustle. Papa’s work rate is great he is so scrappy and will run up and down the entire pitch the entire game. That being said he was running out of control the majority of this game, he would be up at the opponents box and leave gaps in the back which caused pressure. Should have made the tackle on the player in the box for the first goal that was scored. It will be interesting to see what Maradona does with the defense for the next games. Will he go
back to the 3 man line? There are many defenders that deserve a shot at the NT especially after this result. Gonzalo? Zabaleta? Garay? Monzon? I’ll leave it at that

Maxi RODRIGUEZ: 2.5- Not much to say for Maxi this game. Did get involved with some good runs in the beginning of the game. Did nothing to help out defensively and was really quiet, much like all of our midfield. Did have a few attempts at distributing up to Tevez and Messi but was late on all attempts. Did not play well with the Bolivian’s pressuring him with every touch.

MASCHERANO: 2- Really? Come on Mascherano...Our usual heart and soul of the Albiceleste did absolutely nothing at all today. No hustle back tracking runs to disrupt the opponent’s attack, no helping the back 4 with defense, which he did so well for the back 3 against Venezuela.
It was almost like he was not even on the field. He gave the Bolivians way too much space to attempt all those long-range shots at Carrizo all game. I was sitting hear waiting for the team to be like okay they are taking long shots lets step up to stop this, and it never happened. Poor play by Javier. Also, all his passes were off today as well…I don’t want to sound like it’s the end of the world, because its not at all we just need to take a long break and think and learn from what happened today. I feel that this result will make us a stronger and more aware team in the future.

GAGO: 3.5- Player of the game if we are even aloud to have one after this performance. Was a little sloppy on the ball at times but also showed pure class touches and control. You could see he was trying so hard with everything he did, it just was not working out or was unlucky. Of all the players on the team he was the one that was most involved. Everyone on the team was sitting back and never even seemed like they wanted to attack. Gago would win the ball and push it up
field looking to distribute to Messi n Tevez. Good play by Gago just unlucky that no one else on our team felt like playing hard today.

Lucho GONZALEZ: 2- Should be a 1 but he did score a goal, a lucky goal, but a goal none the less. Very poor play by Lucho today, seemed like he was lost out there on the wing, was always in bad defensive position; sometimes he wasn’t even in any position. In the beginning of the game Bolivia were taking advantage of his side because they knew he does not know how to defend. Many chances were created because the majority of the time Lucho was just walking back and letting players go by him.
The altitude was definitely effecting him the most out of all players, but if it is let the coach know and make a change so that you don’t become a detriment to the team.

TEVEZ: 3- The altitude and the Bolivian pressure was too much for Carlitos today. He did show his immense amount of heart and work rate just to no avail today. Had a few good combinations with Messi that allowed Messi to have 1on1’s with the goalie. When he did combine with Messi it was good combination, but this was only 3 or 4 times all game because we were on our heels the entire game.

MESSI: 2.5- Again Messi is truly a special player, however, today nothing was working for him. He touched the ball a lot less then Tevez and it seemed like he was not coming to the ball at all today, like he didn’t want it. When he combined with Tevez it was good to see that, however both times he got in on the goalie he either went for a chip, when the low shot was the proper choice, or favored his left foot like he always does when the right foot would have had the angle to score.
Not a good performance by Messi today, not a good performance by the entire team today. Hopefully Maradona will turn this around in the next round of qualifiers and make changes that are needed to better our team to seal a qualification spot to South Africa.


DI MARIA: 0- Came on for Maxi in the 56th minute, and was a little spark for us as he added quick pace to the game and even attempted to shoot on the keeper from distance which no one was doing. Then the child and lack of experience came out in Di Maria. The blatant kick of the legs of the Bolivian defender. For this he got a straight red card because he also mocked the referee by putting his hand up like a ref does when they book someone. Very very poor decision, the frustration settled and got the best of Di Maria in less then 10 minutes. He has the talent, but after that decision who knows if he will be called back up.



Again I don’t want to make it seem like it’s the end of the world because it’s not. But this performance was weak especially coming off of the 4-0 win. They all knew that it was going to be in the high altitude, and we are technically, physically, and skillfully far better then Bolivia. It’s a sad day for me, as it is for all us Albiceleste followers to see us fall 6-1. But we will regroup and
Maradona will most likely make some changes for the next games and then we will see what we are really made of.


johnny said...

Great job again Dave and your ratings are a pleasure to read. The fact that I agree with them helps ! Surely alot of things to take away from this match, even though it was a disaster. From a team perspective, I would guess that the mix of having a big hangover after the demolition of Venezuela, and then the altitude problem, was just too much to overcome. Add in that Bolivia was lights out all afternoon. We all know that that was not the real Argentina NT out there today. That was a team not yet over celebrating their last victory and being asked to play a fired up team at 13,000 feet.

As for many of the players, we know that their performances were an aberration. That was not Mascherano, Messi, Tevez and a number of others. I would say that the performance of Carrizo was particularly perplexing and I agree in that I hope Maradona begins to explore his options in goal. Also, it may not be best to play Benjamin Zanetti two matches back to back, with the second at altitude. Di Maria needs a spanking and won't be able to show off his skills in the next match. Good. Gutierrez will be back and we need more players like him. He knows his role, his level of talent and plays with those things in mind. So, we move on and let us all hope that Diego and the players learned something today that will help in the future.

Dave P said...

thanks man...disappointing day for all of us.

Roy said...

Excellent ratings Dave. Though I have to disagree with Carrizo. Maybe a 4-5(he was bombarded with shots in the first half) and really kept us in the game. Other than that, I totally agree. Though I would probably give Maxi a 1.5... he really did nothing.

John said...

Yeah, I won't be too harsh on him. He was already a little down before this after losing his place with Lazio. Today, he was getting attack from every corner. I know there were a couple of costly mistake but we should follow Diego's lead in giving some credit (not too much but just a bit more)

Abs said...

Team was bad, and if Messi is injured then why in hell is he playing ?!
The worst game in the history of football !!
Even the lost from Brazil in the Confidintiol cup was better than this .. At least we had something to arrgue, but here ?!

Batigol said...

I know it is very tought to play in La Paz, but losing 6-1 is totally not acceptable, we have not played that bad here before.

Throughout the whole match, I was watching this: When an argentina player got the ball, the rest of the argentina players were standing and watching him play, the rest just did not border to run and move around to make themselves available, what the hell they were doing?
It was really a frustrating thing to watch the team losing such a big margin without even trying to play hard.

Maradona 1: I would say the change in the formation and players are one of the important factor for the defeat.
Firstly, Lucho and Papa did not even have a minute in the
Venezuela match, especially for Lucho, he has not be playing in the first team for quite some time already, how can you expect him to link up with the rest of the team in such a difficult match.

Secondly, the 3-4-3 formation was working so well, Messi's ability was maximized when he is played on the right, just like what he is playing in Barca, why Maradona want to change it completely? Moreover, the 2 small strikers formation has never worked well for us.
Thirdly, defending is defintely more energy consuming than playing attack, if we had and attacking formation, control the ball and make our opponents run at us, we should have a higher chance in winning.

Carizzo 3: He was the man to blame for the 2nd and 6th goal. For the 2nd goal, if he had catch and hold the ball firmly, the penalty just would not happen. For the 6th
goal, even though it was a first time volley, but the distance was around 30M from goal, he should be able to at least parry the ball away. He also tried to dribble the
ball in front of the Bolivian striker which almost costed
us another goal, what was he trying to do. Other than
that, he also made some fine saves, which earn him 3

Papa 5: He was one of the better ones, he played very hard, did not made much mistakes. May be he did not played against Venezuala, his energy was 100%.

Heinze 2: I did not see him in involve in both attack and defence, when we were counter attacked, he was never there, where was Heinze?

Demichelis 5: he did not played against Venezuala too, he was the best defender, we would have lost even more without him

Zanetti 2: I am a fan of Zanetti, but he really played badly in this match, may be he is really too old to play in La Paz. He was the man to be blamed for the 2nd and 3rd
goal. For the 2nd goal, he lost the ball in the penalty area and committed an unnecessary foul. For the 3rd goal, while Papa was denfending the Bolivian striker, he was just standing and watching, even though Carrizo was shouting to him that there was another Bolivian man coming up, but he just keep on watching Papa and the Bolivian player, in the end the on coming unmarked Bolivian No 10 head in for the 3rd goal. What the heck Zanetti was doing??

Lucho 4 - Except for the goal, I did not see him involve in the match, did he played?

Mascherano 3 - Unable to win the midfield. In the 2nd half, there was a moment he tried to shoot from far which is a chance wasting act, it makes me feel more frustrated.

Gago 3 - He tried very hard also, but the outcome was bad. His passes was bad, most of the time too hard and difficult for receiver to control and hold the ball, our attack most of the time ended because of his passes.

Maxi 3 - Did not involve in the match also... another standing man

Tevez 3 - Unable to beat the defenders, did not work as hard as his usual work rate.

Messi 3 - Had 2 chances to score, but missed both of them, his set pieces were bad, his dribbling and ball control were bad too, not the Messi that I know


Di Maria 1 - Played ok when he just came on, but he made our defeat even worse by making a silly foul

Angelleri 2 - Deployed as a right wing, another ball waster who tried at least 1 impossible shot.

Montenegro 4 - Had a cost free kick, but did not involve too much also.

messidona19 said...

i just believe that the goalkeeper has to be changed , the way he misshandled the second goal was disastrous after having such a great game , everything went downwards after that , other than demichelis and heinze were bad , and samuel and milito and garay need to be our main defenders with demichelis too... but i have to admit that bolivia were extremely good , it's as if they were injected with steroids before the match while playing in their prefferable places , they were just too good , they were pressurizing the defence , the midfield and were just too hard to beat . argentina weren't able to hold the ball for more than 15 seconds without losing it and that coming from one of the best possession holding team in the world means something. other than that a defeat is still a defeat whether be it 1 - 0 or 6 - 1 and we should be more focused on the next two matches for the 6 points before the brazil and paraguay matches. other than that VAMOS ARGENTINA WE BELIEVE IN YOU

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