Wow. Hardly any fanfare from MLS about the launch of really user-friendly, detailed chalkboards (powered by Opta). Just go to the MLS schedule page, select the game you’re interested in, click the Matchcentre link and then the Chalkboard button. Hours of fun await.
Let’s see if we can poke some holes in Terry Dunfield
I mentioned this somewhere earlier. A lot of his distribution seems to be safe and short. The chalkboard above indicates that in the game he’s perhaps been most lauded (season opener vs Toronto) he didn’t complete any meaningful passes into the attacking third. Given this is a game the Whitecaps won comfortably, this is the sort of distribution chart you might expect more from a holding midfielder than an attacking mid. There’s not one successful pass made from inside 30 yards. Still to his credit he regularly has the most ‘incidents’ noted by Opta of any Whitecap and often by a large margin.
What I’d like to see, to make him more influential is for more of his passes to have a penetrating quality similar to the actual runs he makes to link with strikers and wide players putting crosses in. If the passes could match the forays he’d be more of an Iniesta or Scholes…and he’d probably find his job in the middle less under fire from the likes of Chiumiento.