(Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
I spent much of the day yesterday reflecting on Saturday's game. What did I like? (Not much.) What didn't I like? (Far too much.) If anything, Saturday's game showed by that there are still a few jitters left over from the 2011 squad that made them an easy road team to beat. The fact that the New England Revolution managed to score within 30 seconds of kick off is fairly telling of our current defensive back line.
So, suffice it to say, today's ratings won't be pretty. I've watched the game twice now and there was very little I liked out there.
Also, remember, my ratings for for this game only. Training, past games, etc. do not factor into these player ratings and they're not averaged out toward a final season rating at the end. That will be handled at the end of the season independent from these individual game ratings.
Troy Perkins: 4
It wasn't a great game for Perkins, unfortunately. I'm not entirely sure what was happening with him on Saturday but he seemed disjointed. While we can't really fault him for the first goal (that was Brunner's and Palmer's fault) and he did technically keep the game to a 1-nil loss, on more than a few occasions he fumbled the ball on the box and caused some scrambling.
Love Palmer: 2
Terrible game for Palmer. While he was active in getting crosses out, especially in the second half, his defensive skills were completely non-existent and New England's Lee Nguyen consistently got around Palmer to make those deep crosses into the box. And let's not forget that bludgeoning of Nguyen... terribly sloppy.
I don't know where Brunner's head was on Saturday, but it certainly wasn't in the game. His mis-marking of Saer Sene for the first goal is what lead to the goal in the first place. He also consistently gave too much space to New England's attackers and didn't close down nearly as often as we've come to expect. By all accounts, rookie Andrew Jean-Baptiste played a better defensive game than Brunner. He did redeem himself a bit with some great defending that spared the Timbers from a 1-on-1 later in the first half.
Not much of a game for Mosquera so I've given him a bit of a pass on today's rankings. It's unfortunate he went down with an injury and we wish him the speediest of recoveries. Sidenote: with him out the Timbers are now down to just two center back defenders.
Similar to Lovel Palmer and the way he played against FC Dallas. I'd love to see the home opener Wallace again, but his past two performances leave me wondering if he is partially responsible for the Timbers' road weariness.
Another player we've come to expect great things out of was relatively muted Saturday afternoon. Aside from a few crosses and one wildly off target shot there wasnt much to talk about with regards to Alhassan. After his performance at home, we should be expecting more out of him.
Diego Chara: 6
Chara was actually one of the few players I didn't think had a terrible game on Saturday. Despite the loss, he seemed to bounce back and forth between the two boxes supply the attacking of defensive skills when needed. He even had a decent chance on goal which unfortunately went wide. He probably could have done more to control that ball.
Similar to Chara, I didn't dislike Jewsbury and thought that he was honestly just trying to do too much to help cover all of the Timbers missing spots on the field. His singular dark spot was the sloppy tackle that lead to a yellow card earyl in the first half. He's a veteran player now and should know better than to attempt that, especially since it wasn't a goal saving tackle... reckless.
Eric Alexander: 3
Another player who was phenomenal in the home opener but just didn't live up to those previous benchmarks. Needless to say that everybody was pretty happy when Franck Songo'o subbed on for him in the 60th minute.
Not much from Nagbe Saturday. I really want Nagbe to have a completely dominating 2-goal+ game so that he can prove he deserves that starting striker position, but he just never seems to be able to get into the rhythm of things up there. Saturday's game proved that he's much better as a winger than a striker, at least for now. He did have the only shot on goal though.
Kris Boyd: 6
A decent game for Boyd that was highlighted by his missed chances. A single goal would have elevated his position in these rankings significantly, but, at the very least, he was always in position and the fact that he got his head on a number of crosses shows that. Now we just need him to keep them on target.
Andrew Jean-Baptiste: 5
Some defensive scrambling aside, the rookie center back played to expectations I think. It's amazing to think that only 8 or so weeks ago nobody though AJB would be getting many minutes this year and now it looks like he could be a starter for a while. While it's not ideal, I'm at least a placated by his performance on Saturday to not be driven into fits of anxiety.
Franck Songo'o: 7
Really enjoyed what I saw from Songo'o when he came in. It's unfortunate that he wasn't able to turn the game around, but I think he definitely showed that he deserves that starting position now that he's no longer injured. He was creative and he flowed through the field with ease.
Jorge Perlaza: N/A
Perlaza came in a bit too late to fairly judge him. That said, I think I'd rather see him starting up top next to Boyd rather than Nagbe.
0: Absolutely atrocious.
1 - 3: Poor. Questionably first team, or bench player.
4 - 6: Fair. Quality player that played to expectations. Perhaps could have done more.
7 - 9: Great. On top of their game, even if everything doesn't always connect.
10: Perfect. Couldn't have been a better night and very few mistakes made.
Agree? Disagree? Sound off with your comments AND/OR player ratings below!