The Fire's performance was an improvement over the last few games although the match ended in a loss. Overall fluidity and team play was better but finishing chances remains a huge problem. It seems that the 4-5-1 formation is the team's best shape at the moment although the second half was a bit disjointed due to substitutions.
The second half substitutions brought Mike Banner on for Marco Pappa and Julio Martinez on for Brian McBride. This change moved Nyarko up top as the lone forward with Martinez playing the right side. Martinez had a chance in the 55th minute after and nice build up from Nyarko, Banner, and Husidic. Milan's goalkeeper Dida kept the Fire off the scoreboard with a big save.
Another sub who made an impression in a brief appearance was Corben Bone. The rookie midfielder replaced Baggio Husidic in the 69th minute and showed that he understands how to play a ball into space to create opportunities. I'd like to see more of Corben Bone in MLS action.
Although this match provided some improved play the Fire still has a long way to go before they can be considered a danger to the best teams in MLS. A more cohesive offensive display was pleasing but one must consider that AC Milan wasn't exactly playing at top speed. Defensively, the effort was much better in this match as well. Milan had some occasional impressive passing sequences but not a whole lot of truly dangerous chances. The lone goal from Clarence Seedorf was the result of a missed clearance by CJ Brown.
Seedorf to MLS?
Speaking of Clarence Seedorf, I asked him after the game if MLS was a destination he would consider. After jokingly asking "To do what?", Seedord replied "I have a year contract with AC Milan. I'm a guy who likes to finish contracts. I will be involved hopefully soon with MLS in one way or another."
So there you have it. We can close the book on Seedorf until July 2011, when his contract with AC Milan expires. Seedorf would be a great addition to MLS in any capacity. You can listen to Seedorf's comments on the latest Fire Confidential podcast.
Collins John dressed but did not play due to illness. According to De Los Cobos, John missed training yesterday with some sort of virus.
De Los Cobos was happy with the effort and performance but acknowledged that finishing is still not good. "Milan did not play 100% like the Champion's League but we brought resistance to them. It was not easy for them" said De Los Cobos after the match.
Fire Confidential Podcast
You can listen to De Los Cobos' post game comments, Justin Mapp, and Clarence Seedorf by clicking here.