Tony Beltran, cool as a cucumber, picks RSL style over panic

Tony Beltran, cool as a cucumber, picks RSL style over panic

While listening to Tony Beltran's interview on the excellent OnFrame last night, I was spurred to thought. A dangerous prospect, I know. Tony, ever effusive, spoke briefly about the loss against Chivas being more of a one-off than anything — something we've seen repeated by other players as well.

Now, I know some fans have problems with that notion, but I've got to say, I'm not entirely sure why. What the statements — you know, the 9-times-out-of-10 statements — would seem to say is not that we feel entitled, or that Chivas didn't put in the proper work, but something altogether a bit different. I'll let Tony say it for me:

Ah! There it is. It's not about how-many-times-out-of-10 we'd win, but that playing effective soccer leads to wins. I've heard some concern that we don't do enough to break down these bunkering teams, but our record over the past two years at home would seem to indicate otherwise. Now, I'd hesitate to describe this as a one-off this early, just as I'm hesitating to put too much weight into the loss. I'd rather we didn't lose (clearly!) but there's more to it than just that.

Tony, for what it's worth, seems to understand what I can't quite put into words. Perhaps it's just that we should avoid the onset of panic whenever we look like we may not win a match. Throwing away the system would be wholly and utterly futile, and moving toward a hoof-and-hope (ahem, LA Galaxy) cross-into-the-box style would be about as useless as a 12-foot spinning top.

With that said, it does seem that everyone's aware that they'll have to pick up their ideas a bit at home. The loss was certainly avoidable, and Tony Beltran, for his part, recognizes that Real Salt Lake can do better.

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On another note, it is perhaps a shame that the US U-23s have crashed out of the Olympics so early. I do find problems getting enraged or upset about it, and there's one big reason why.

I've repeatedly seen people saying that national teams don't have enough power over club teams to really make things work properly. This, to my mind, is a dangerous road to go down. I won't venture into the whole problem today, but let us keep in mind that the clubs pay salaries, they pay medical costs, and they pay the ultimate price when players are out for periods of time either with their national sides or with long-term injuries.

Call me old-fashioned if you will, but there's a reason national teams don't hold the ultimate power over club players, and I hope it stays that way.

That said, it's too bad for the U.S. kids, who now won't have a chance at performing in the Olympics.

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That's about it for today. If you're looking for something to listen to, might I recommend the excellent OnFrame radio show from last night? Go, do it. It's worth it.