Gold Cup Final Statistical Analysis

Ben and I are currently all atwitter, as Major League Soccer has finally started posting chalkboards. And Opta was even gracious enough to provide stats for the Gold Cup!

Over at the USA10Kit.com, I used those chalkboards to detail how Mexico was able to run rampant on the US defense. So follow the link, check out the chalkboards, and let me know what you thought.

For you lazy folk, here are the talking points.

  • The US didn’t press nearly as high as Mexico.
  • The lack of defensive pressure from the United States allowed Mexico’s attackers time to pick out passes.
  • Mexico played direct, deep passes to the front four, which is why the US defenders were constantly running toward their own goal.

One chalkboard that didn’t make the final cut of my 10Kit analysis was the successful passes of both teams in the first 11 minutes.

In the match's first 11 minutes, Mexico completed 50 passes to USA's 27.

Why the first 11 minutes? Because Steve Cherundolo exited in the 11th minute.

Following the match, many analysts posited that the US defense suffered without Cherundolo. While I certainly won’t argue that Cherundolo’s absence was a good thing, the US defense was under assault even before Cherundolo was forced to leave.

Bob Bradley got his formation and personnel right, but the lack of pressing allowed Mexico time and space to pick out their passes, which turned out to be the game’s turning point.

Gringos, read my 10Kit article if you haven’t already. It’s chock-full of, uh, chalkboards.

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