Really tough battle tonight. Pittsburgh is a very physical and strong team and a good match for our guys. Oddly of our 6 loses this year, 2 were to Pittsburgh. High level defensive soccer tonight, but we lost the midfield battle. Tampa Bay has a chance to overtake us this weekend.
Omir Fernandez - tough night for Omir. Had a couple breaks but couldnt find the net. Didn't look like he had enough time to gel with some of the other guys and struggled to get many touches without losing the ball.
Kyle Duncan - was a move off for much of the night. Gets up the field well, but passes werent sharp at all. Second goal for Pittsburgh occurred after he ran up the field, cut to the middle then gave up a poor pass and jogged back while Pittsburgh played it right to where he should have been, leaving Nealis in a 1v3 jam. Still think he can be a MLS level talent, just needs to keep focused and understand his limitations. A bit surprised we didn't bring Rito on in his place for at least 30 minutes.
Vincent Bezecourt- Uncharacteristic bad night for Beze. Knocked off many balls, poor passing (outside the assist), didn't get open much, struggled turning up the field, bunched up with Lema and Koffi far too much.
Preston Kilwien - solid defending throughout the night, doing well covering for Loebe when he pushed up.
Jean-Christophe Koffi - continues to improve each week. Really good defensively and pushes forward well. Needs work on taking on defenders. Usually has great bursts of speed, but goes straight to a defender before making a pass.
Jared Stroud - 7 players on the first team and he looked better than at least 4 of them tonight (Louro, Koffi and Barlow the exceptions). Not sure if the struggles of Omir and Beze made Stroud stand out more, or if he was just getting into the right spaces.
Elney with a horrific touch on a breakaway with the keeper with Stroud wide open. Dribbled it right into the keeper. Ouch.
53rd minute: Elney on a breakaway, defender catches up to him and makes contact in the box. We get a PK and Hartford gets a red. Coach Nielsen losing his mind. Clear as day DOGSO and pull down. Ref then gives a red for contacting the ref to another Hartford player. 11v9! Anytime we are up players, means we will struggle.
On queue: Bezecourt blasts the PK into the sky. Terrible finishing all over today.
Mines on for Rito. Stroud to left wing. Duncan to right back, Loebe to left back. Mines at RW.
60th minute: More atrocious finishing. Counter results in a corner kick and plenty of time wasting.
Really unsure if trades can occur at this point, but to be fair this is MLS and most rules are written in pencil.
"Primary Transfer Window and Secondary Transfer Window: During the season, trades that involve players must occur during either the Primary Transfer Window (2019: February 13 May 7) or Secondary Transfer Window (2019: July 9 August 7)."
I'm still under the impression that players cant be moved past the 8th and the window is closed. Only non-player movement can happen now (i.e. draft picks, GAM/TAM, etc...) Apparently I am wrong, but roster rules seemed pretty clear on that topic.
Sign Duvall (fits our system perfectly - helped carve it). Trade Murillo to Portland for Chara.
Let Duncan play regularly with NYRBII and Buckmaster back up Duvall.
Matt Kassel also had some time with Philly and Amando Moreno has seen a few minutes with Chicago this year.
Adam Najem's HGP rights were traded to Philly where he had some time in matches. We traded the HGP rights to Bryan Gallego to Portland, but I don't think he ever played in MLS. Was sent to USL for a couple years before exiting the game.
Also, as a reminder we traded away our second round pick to move up and get Epps, so we had to trade away Moreno to get the pick for Buckmaster.