Women’s World Cup: Canada v Germany

I’ll try to put something more substantive out later when I’ve got a bit more time but a few quick thoughts.

  • Some interesting set pieces by Canada. Obviously a lot of thought has gone into them but the more complex ones were poorly executed while the Sinclair’s goal on the free kick was obviously perfectly executed.
  • The Germans were rampant and 2-1 flattered Canada. It was a game where the possession stats (51:49 for Canada) did not tell the story of the game. Erin McLeod was outstanding on everything except the first goal where she got caught tracking a cross she had no chance of getting and ended up in position to make a save
  • Clare Rustad and Jason DeVos were both excellent as CBC’s analysts. Their comments was spot on and it was communicated very well. What was most refreshing was the willingness to not be patronizing. Mistakes were pointed out. Individual players were held accountable for actions. To not do so and just give pats on the head is insulting to the players and to the women’s game in general. The positive comments carry no authority if the mistakes are not noted equally.
  • Canada’s back four was just not quick enough or fleet of foot enough to deal with German attacks when they didn’t have the ball and German pressure when they did have the ball. Candace Chapman is the only exception to that.
  • Losing by just one goal (and scoring) compared to what should really have been at least a three goal margin on the balance of play could end up being huge for Canada’s prospects for advancing. I think this is going to be a tight group and goal difference could determine who advances.
  • Would it have been a different game if Christine Sinclair had slotted that first chance in the first six minutes? No, I don’t think so. Germany are so good they would just have persisted and eventually got their goals.
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11 Responses to Women’s World Cup: Canada v Germany

  1. Island Soccer says:

    spot on … as usual Gregor!

    the CAN-FRA game will be the one that decides who goes forward, a draw or loss and its over

    • Gregor says:

      Actually I think a draw does more for Canada than France. Given we only lost by a goal to Germany (and scored a goal), if you assume France also lose to Germany (which I think is a safe bet), it means we just have to beat Nigeria by at most two goals. A one goal win against Nigeria will even put us through if the Germans beat the French by more than one.

  2. Brendan Quarry says:

    So where’s that new style of play that everyone is talking about for Canada? Looked like old the Pellerud team to me. Never passed the ball through the midfield. No patience in possession. No speed of play. Germany’s style of play wasn’t much better except they have much better individual skill. Do you notice how they never publish the “passes completed rate” in the women’s game. It would be too embarrassing to publish. Probably something like 40%. Sadly the women’s game is not something for young girls to emulate yet. Hopefully I’ll feel differently as this World Cup progresses.

    • K says:

      I didn’t see the game – I wonder if, as people say, Germany was so dominant that Canada simply couldn’t keep the ball long enough and thus were thumping it forward? Maybe will see a change v. France? I’d suggest that might be the test. Afterall, I’d not expect Canada Men to do much “knocking it about” v. Spain either (though we did quite well 2-3 v. Brazil in Seattle!)

      • Brendan Quarry says:

        K, it’s all about having the “intention” to play – not necessarily whether we had success in doing so. I didn’t see the intention in that game whatsoever. As you said, when the men played Brazil, we played. Kept the ball, tried to play, and subsequently did very well. When the men played Argentina, they lost 5-0 but tried to play the whole time and had good spells of knocking the ball around. We need to raise our expectations for the women’s game. Too many commentators holding back criticism and applauding the effort. Doesn’t help the advancement of the female side of the game. The irony is that everyone throws the men’s national team under the bus if they don’t win but the reality is that the men’s side is playing good football these days and have made big advancements in their game. Why do we expect less of the women? It’s simple. Because they’ve won more games over the last 10 years than the men so we don’t scrutinize their play. It’s also because they’re women so we expect less. I think it’s a form of chauvinism to expect less. To be critical of the women’s game is to respect its potential.

      • Gregor says:

        Had a similar, albeit short, discussion tonight with one of our Board members. He thought Canada really tried to play and were somewhat successful. I had to say that I thought they were really on the back foot most of the game and while Brendan makes the case for Canada really not looking much different under Morace than Pellerud I think a fairer testing ground will be the game against France because the reality is that Germany is just at another level than everybody else save probably the US.

        “Didn’t” pass the ball through midfield looked more like “couldn’t” pass through midfield, got flustered and forced the ball longer and more awkwardly than they may have wanted to. Schmidt was overrun and Kyle was just not good enough to deal with the Germans in midfield. It wasn’t just them though. Beyond Chapman and McLeod I thought there were few who really left a positive impression on the game. The media latched on to Christine Sinclair because of the broken nose but really she missed an early chance that was really Canada’s only chance to shake up the game and set it on a different course (although I do think the Germans would still have recovered from going down a goal early; they’re just too good). Her goal, while well taken is the staple of women’s soccer. Direct free kicks are scored from much more than in the men’s game because the keepers just can’t cover the same percentage of the goal as the men do.

        It would be interesting to see passing stats on these games. Not to use as a weapon to dismiss the women’s game but for the same reason I’d love to have access to that info for our club youth games: it’s a tactile learning tool and as Anson Dorrance said, “The men’s game is the university for the women’s game.”

        France will be the game that will be the true measure of where this Canadian team is at.

      • K says:

        As I said, didn’t see the game. Wasn’t saying they couldn’t play well. Just wondered if the superiority of the opposition denied them doing so. I hear you re: “intention”

      • Brendan Quarry says:

        The passing stats would be good as you say “not to use as a weapon” but, in my opinion, as a way of highlighting the deficiencies in the women’s game (or more particularly Canada’s game). The female side of the game will only improve once we start being honest about its deficiencies. The Canadian Women’s National Team is too much a sacred cow in our soccer community. To be honest, I was even disappointed in Germany’s style of play. They’re usually not that direct.

        I do agree that the France game will be a better measurement. I haven’t seen all the games but was told by a friend that France moves the ball very well.

  3. Colin Elmes says:

    Brendan, you turn into a pumpkin after midnight. Done be so hard on the girls, you will hurt their feelings 😉

  4. Gregor says:

    I’m in Barcelona with a busted laptop and reduced to an iPad and star bucks wireless.

    Briefly, as I said, the game vs France would be a better game to judge Canada on and all you can really say is that Pellarud was right: we aren’t good enough technically to be successful at this level. Do you blame Morace for trying? No. But maybe for sticking with too many of Pellerud’s war horses this time around.

  5. Colin Elmes says:

    “I’m in Barcelona…”
    nice gig. I was just in Bellingham.

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