Loading...
en

2007. The Grizzlies have gone to six s from cx888's blog

BRASILIA, Brazil -- The United States womens soccer team spent much of the past year laying a foundation to win now and win later. Alexandre Burrows Jersey . So as the Olympic medal rounds begin without American players in sight, were left to figure out what an inability to win in Rio says about the prospects of winning the 2019 World Cup and beyond.The calendar of international womens soccer, at least for those teams not geographically fortunate to qualify for next summers European Championship, makes the Olympics even more important than what the event might merit. Success can serve as a quick salve for World Cup bitterness, as gold medals were for the U.S. women in 1996, 2004, 2008 and 2012. Failure can make for a fitful hibernation, the sting fading all the more slowly with three years until the next major tournament.Nothing is ever as rosy as it seems in the afterglow of a championship or as grim as it seems after defeat. The image of Swedish players taking a celebratory lap around the field in Brasilia while their American counterparts crumpled to the shoddy turf will linger in many minds. Fair or not, that defines the U.S. team for now.Yet the United States will be back on the field in barely a month to play Thailand in a friendly, then the Netherlands a few days later. It is both all the time in the world and barely enough time to take stock of what comes next.For those who believe the blueprint for success is in place, what this team needs is time. Time and experience in meaningful games would be nice, but time will suffice. That perspective was put forth by the one person who had better believe in the blueprint -- because she drew it.I think that this was a good step, in terms of how we want the game to look for us, U.S. coach Jill Ellis said after the exit against Sweden, a game in which she felt her team played well but couldnt find the goal. Certainly to come up short, its disappointing. But at this point, weve got to stay committed and focused on how we want to evolve as a team.Ellis, who earned a contract extension and likely all the political capital she needs for now during the World Cup, had one eye on 2019 almost before 2016 arrived. It was to be a remake in both style and personnel.This wasnt a roster put together in a go-for-broke effort to become the first country to win the World Cup and Olympics in back-to-back years. Partly that was because such a roster wasnt possible. Beyond the players who retired or took themselves out of the running after last years World Cup, captains Abby Wambach and Christie Rampone among them, other players with international experience like Sydney Leroux and Amy Rodriguez were also unavailable.The roster grew more developmental by necessity. Short of including Heather OReilly on the active roster, and her place might well have been the one that went to Megan Rapinoe, there wasnt exactly a plethora of players with dozens of caps wasting away at home this summer.A roster that included Crystal Dunn, Lindsey Horan and Mallory Pugh, as well as untested options like Sam Mewis and Emily Sonnett among the traveling alternates (not to mention a roster on which Morgan Brian and Julie Johnston qualified as experienced), was by definition a work in progress. Make no mistake, it was a group with which the United States felt it could win gold -- and should have medaled -- but a work in progress all the same.So the game against Sweden raised several questions that have as much to do with what comes next for the United States as what went wrong on the day.First among them, by public acclaim if not importance, is what to do with Hope Solo.It is ironic that the same pragmatism that granted Solo a reprieve the last time the goalkeeper defined another unsuccessful major tournament with her own words, blasting then-coach Greg Ryans decision to bench her in the 2007 World Cup, is what caused the mess in Brasilia. Just as Pia Sundhage looked at the quarterfinal against the United States in this tournament and decided a defensive approach was the best way to give her team a chance to advance, she looked at the state of American goalkeeping entering 2008 and decided Solos saves and back-line management were worth some news conference headaches and critical columns.Ellis faces the same conundrum, but with a goalkeeper who will be 37 when the next World Cup begins. It is possible Solo will walk away of her own volition, although that seems the less likely scenario. But when it comes to her job, Ellis is as much a pragmatist as her old boss. And the memorable Olympic miscue against Colombia aside, Solos words still attract attention because she is still really good at playing the position that gives her a megaphone.Right or wrong, the current clamor will soon fade to a grumble, and Solo will probably remain in goal until another goalkeeper, rather than her own words, removes her.The more pressing question, or series of questions, comes down to how the other pieces fit together. There will be new faces to emerge in the next few years -- few would have predicted even this spring that Allie Long would end up on the Olympic roster and starting. But with the aforementioned cadre of young talent and a group of veterans who could almost universally still be in play three years from now, the core of 2019 is already here.And it needs to fit together better than it did in Brazil, the middle of the field the best example of how close it might be but how it fell short.Some of the best moments for the United States against Sweden came when someone had the ball in space in the middle of the field and stretched the discipline of the lines of defenders. In early moments that was Brian, often in combination with Heath. Later, even more effectively, it was first Pugh, while the game remained scoreless, and then Crystal Dunn as the United States chased an equalizer and eventually the winner that never came.No one has truly thrived in the No. 8 role as it exists for the United States as Ellis looks for a quicker tempo, passing game to replace the direct style of Sundhage and days of yore. Holiday made the best of it in the rare moments she got to play it because she was that good, but it was rarely the best we saw of her. Brian struggled to make the same sort of impact in that role that she did a year ago in the No. 6 role. Horan slipped out of the rotation after promising showings early in the year. That is too much talent passing through that space without making a distinct impression.And indeed, it all too often feels as if there is too much space for any one player to manage behind Alex Morgan and Carli Lloyd, who for all the gifts of skill and spirit that made her the FIFA player of the year is not going to be a string-pulling creator as a No. 10. It seems from afar that too much is asked of others at the expense of exactly the kind of instinctive, intuitive play Ellis said the situation demanded on the eve of the Sweden game.It is partly skill that makes Dunn and Pugh, to this point both wide players for this team, so electric when they come inside of pick up the ball in those central areas. It is also that they are free to be electric in those spaces.As much as anything, that space might tell the story in the coming weeks and months. Not because a commanding play maker is a cure-all but because someone emerging as that presence would indicate a team better understanding how their coach wants them to play and perhaps a coach adjusting to enable the players to operate with more abandon. There is ample attacking talent. The U.S. women have the pieces to put games away.They ran out of time to put those pieces together, just as they ran out of time against a Swedish team they bombarded with shots.Brazil was a painful experience. But it was painful in context. This wasnt a case of a collection of the best we have proving decidedly not good enough. The hope is this remains a group that isnt yet the best it can be.Three more things to watchLabor unrest: Players lost leverage with the premature exit from the Olympics, helped not at all on the public relations front by headlines about the poor sportsmanship of one of their most recognizable voices during what is, in theory, a celebration of global athletic goodwill. But the veteran leadership on this team, including Solo, is also committed to standing up for wage equality and using what remains one of the highest-profile bully pulpits in womens sports.All of which means there probably isnt going to be a tidy or quick resolution when the memorandum of understanding acting in lieu of a collective bargaining agreement expires at the end of this year. Far more of consequence is likely to happen off the field in 2017 than on it.Pughs turn as captain: She wont be enrolled at UCLA this fall, but Pugh will keep busy. Shell continue to pile up air miles when she leads the U.S. entry in the FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Papua New Guinea in November and early December. This is also the U-20 World Cup that is most likely to offer auditions for players who want to be part of the conversation for the senior team in 2019 or 2020. Near the top of that list is Ashley Sanchez, who spent a short time with the senior team earlier this year. Pugh is an aberration. High school seniors dont usually earn starting places on the national team. But Sanchez is a talent at whatever pace she develops.Aging process: Lloyd mentioned more than once in the mixed zone after the game that she planned to go for titles in both the 2019 World Cup and 2020 Olympics. She will be 37 when the World Cup begins. Fellow captain Becky Sauerbrunn will be 34. Frequent starters Megan Rapinoe (33), Tobin Heath (31) and Meghan Klingenberg (30) will also be in a new decade on the planet. Fredrik Claesson Jersey . The Court of Arbitration for Sport ruling "puts an end to my dreams of being a top player," the 27-year-old Troicki said in a statement. "I worked my entire life for it, and it has been taken away from me in one afternoon by a doctor I didnt know," said Troicki, whose ranking peaked at No. Chris Kelly Jersey . The judges scored it 48-47, 48-47, 49-46 for Jones (19-1). It was the champions closest call. Despite the loss, it was a remarkable show by the confident Swedish challenger, who had the best of the early rounds and then hung on in the fourth and fifth. http://www.senatorsauthority.com/authentic-alex-formenton-senators-jersey/ . The 29-year-old from Port Colborne, Ont., has nothing but good things to say about former U.S. marine Liz (Girlrilla) Carmouche ahead of their co-main event Wednesday on the UFCs "Fight for the Troops" televised card in Fort Campbell, Ky. MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Memphis Grizzlies have signed general manager Chris Wallace and a pair of executive vice presidents in the front office to multi-year extensions.The team announced the deals Thursday without disclosing the terms.Controlling owner Robert Pera said in a statement that Wallace along with John Hollinger, executive vice president of basketball operations, and Ed Stefanski, executive vice president of player personnel, have established the culture he belieeves is necessary to compete in the NBA. Nate Thompson Jersey. Wallace has been Memphis general manager since June 18, 2007. The Grizzlies have gone to six straight postseasons with 27 playoff victories after having none in the first three appearances.Hollinger has been with Memphis since December 2012, and Stefanski has been with Memphis since July 2014. Cheap Jerseys 2020 Cheap Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys Store Wholesale Jerseys 2018 Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Discount NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Store NFL Jerseys From China Wholesale Jerseys 2018 Nike NFL Jerseys China Jerseys From China Wholesale Black NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale China NFL Hoodies Wholesale Authentic Jerseys ' ' ' 

Previous post     
     Next post
     Blog home

The Wall

No comments
You need to sign in to comment

Post

By cx888
Added Oct 11

Rate

Your rate:
Total: (0 rates)

Archives

WARNING: This website contains explicit pictures, videos, stories, images, or sounds..
You must be 18 years of age or older to enter. If you are under 18, or if it is forbidden to view this content in your community, you must leave this site.