Thursday, July 8, 2021

Indy Eleven vs Atlanta United 2 - 08.12


- Opponent: Atlanta United 2
- Location: Fifth Third Bank Stadium
- Attendance: 638
- Final Score: 1-1 D

- Starting XI: Dick, Buckmaster, Timmer, Cochran, Seagrist, Koffie, Gutjahr, Law (C), Vassell, Wild, Hamilton
- Substitutions: Moon 45' (Wild); Smith 64' (Vassell); Arteaga 65' (Hamilton); Sissoko 73' (Gutjahr)
- Unused: Edwards, Malic, Ouimette

- Scoring Summary:
IND - Hamilton 64' (assist Moon)
ATL2 - Stanley 73'

- Bookings:

- Referee: Sergii Demianchuk
- Adage goals: None

Thoughts and Opinions

Apparently having a grass playing surface in the south means that you're playing on patches of grass and heaps of sand. Much like Indy's foray into the beaches of Birmingham, Atlanta didn't want to be outdone. The field looked slightly better, but only marginally than the field in Birmingham.

Then Rogers threw out every lineup we've seen this season and went with what I could only describe as a very fluid 4-2-3-1. All of the guys have played in games, but not generally together or to the extent required for a starting lineup. This was clearly another example of squad rotation during a Saturday-Wednesday-Saturday, but, and we're all family here, this seems like playing the "B" team and playing down to a "2" team that had players playing up with the 1st team. 

Anyway, with so many adjustments to the lineup, Indy started the game exactly like you would expect from a lineup that has so many new pieces (at least new to official game minutes). 


Like a team that was willing to get a draw from the night on another garbage grass field. Which is how I expected the game to continue. The halftime whistle sent the teams in with a 0 - 0 scoreline, and presumably, a discussion from Rogers that he wants guys to press and attack more. While I was surprised that Wild was the choice to come out of the game, Rogers replaced him with Moon immediately after the break and the spark that he provided was immediate. It took about twenty minutes, but the substitution paid off as Moon's hustle after a defensive mistake allowed him to run at the goal with minimal defense and then send in a cross into the box that Hamilton was able to latch onto and redirect into the goal. What followed was maybe the most subdued goal celebration in history. The rest of the substitutions were similarly more forward than the players they replaced as Indy pushed more in the second half than they did in the first half.

Atlanta's goal in the 73rd minute was, well, not much you can do about it. Sometimes a guy gets a ball in a tiny pocket of space and fires a ball through all the traffic into a location where the goalkeeper isn't standing. That's just some good effort combined with some good or bad luck depending on which team you want to win. 

If I'm trying to be optimistic, the team came away with a point on the road. It was good to see the coaching staff and the players make the adjustments at halftime. If I'm being pessimistic, this was a winnable game that didn't need all the drama of a drastically different lineup and the slow start. 

Indy continue their road trip with a stop in Oklahoma before heading back to Carroll for a rematch with Memphis. 

The Game Beckons Game Ball

Less than two weeks after joining the squad, Eric Dick picked up his first start as part of the rotation and Edwards' seeming ability to pick up knocks every game. With very limited time with the team, Dick picked up 7 saves and some front office play on words with his last name on Twitter. The first of those is worth the GBGB. The second just makes him a good sport.

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