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Opponent watch: Suriname (why they have the potential to be a tough team)


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Currently, Suriname does not seem to have the upper level of player that Canada has, especially without Riedewald. By club pedigree, you probably have to go four or five Canadian players down to get to a comparable player to the best of the Suriname team, i.e. Donk and Becker are probably pretty comparable at club level to Larin and Arfield and Atiba.  When you go further down the list, you start getting into: who's better, an MLS starter vs. a starter at the lower end of the Eredivisie. 

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It’s tough to say how they will be, because some teams punch above their weight based on what they look like on paper. Carlos Ruiz (Guatemala) killed us back in the day but he didn’t play in a big European league. I feel like this is the case with Central American teams. They have a huge home field advantage, cohesion and style of play come into factor too. Now will Suriname who has very little national team success to lean on know what to do when they need to do it? The Central American teams (who appear to have less talent) do. 

Edited by Alex
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Perhaps the whole notion of what teams look like on paper is overrated? For example, the USA pool just got sexier with Mark McKenzie (Genk) and Brandon Aaronson (RB Salzburg) leaving MLS, but nothing has changed in reality, just perception.

You'd expect them to get better with time, and I am sure they will, but the expectation would have been the same had they stayed with Philadelphia. Diego Rossi is expected to improve every season with LAFC, and he has done so without a European move. Switching to a European club doesn't magically make you a better player the moment you touchdown there.

Sometimes we get a little too caught up in it. I know I do. Then reality smacks us in the face when we lose to a Honduras or a Haiti, teams we should beat on paper. 

Edited by Obinna
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2 hours ago, Alex said:

It’s tough to say how they will be, because some teams punch above their weight based on what they look like on paper. Carlos Ruiz (Guatemala) killed us back in the day but he didn’t play in a big European league. I feel like this is the case with Central American teams. They have a huge home field advantage, cohesion and style of play come into factor too. Now will Suriname who has very little national team success to lean on know what to do when they need to do it? The Central American teams (who appear to have less talent) do. 

Central American teams are always a problem because they have cohesion and play to win. Sum of all the parts and all that. We also really value English football so if someone plays in like League 1 it comes with certain credibility but English footballs values certain attributes that Central American players may not typically have. So yah I think just because we can't immediately identify these players we shouldn't sleep on them. I think Guatemala could be a sleeper this cycle 

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11 hours ago, Obinna said:

Perhaps the whole notion of what teams look like on paper is overrated? For example, the USA pool just got sexier with Mark McKenzie (Genk) and Brandon Aaronson (RB Salzburg) leaving MLS, but nothing has changed in reality, just perception.

... Switching to a European club doesn't magically make you a better player the moment you touchdown there.

True, but now those 2 players will likely progress more in the next 2 years, and get closer to their potential sooner than if they had stayed in MLS. Davies would not be a top 3 left back right now if he had stayed with Vancouver, even if he had all the physical tools. He would not have improved anywhere near as much had he spent the last 2 years with Vancouver.

By 2026 the depth, and quality, of the USMNT pool will be scary as hell.

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9 hours ago, LeoH037 said:

True, but now those 2 players will likely progress more in the next 2 years, and get closer to their potential sooner than if they had stayed in MLS. Davies would not be a top 3 left back right now if he had stayed with Vancouver, even if he had all the physical tools. He would not have improved anywhere near as much had he spent the last 2 years with Vancouver.

By 2026 the depth, and quality, of the USMNT pool will be scary as hell.

Well yeah fair point, but we often assume european success because we are optimistic by nature. Fans never expect their players to go to Europe and flame out, but it happens. Look at Brek Shea and Juan Agudelo.

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4 hours ago, Obinna said:

Well yeah fair point, but we often assume european success because we are optimistic by nature. Fans never expect their players to go to Europe and flame out, but it happens. Look at Brek Shea and Juan Agudelo.

One could argue however, that now the younger players making the jump from MLS to Europe or European academies are doing so better prepared to succeed, as opposed to 5-10 years ago. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
1 hour ago, N1ckbr0wn said:

Suriname has to be stronger than Belize now. Maybe we see them in CONMEBOL for the 2026 cycle?

If you look at Central America, I only put them behind Costa Rica, Honduras and Panama. This is nothing more than a wild guess based on me looking at their Wikipedia and not having seen them play. Is it fair to say they are equal to curaçao? 

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Just now, Shway said:

In hindsight, it might be better to play them first . By the time we play them, they'll have a lot of familiarity. 

That thought had crossed my mind also. I just hope we don’t get caught by surprise. 

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10 minutes ago, Boominbooty said:

If we can’t beat Suriname and get out of this round we should close the whole program down and start over in a decade. I coach some U10s that will be ready to go then. 

I think this take is sort of silly. 2018 Panama had just 5 players in Europe, and 2 of those were in Slovakia and Romania. If Suriname get all of their callups, they'll have a full Euro starting 11. Of course we should beat them, but there's a universe where we make the World Cup, and there's a universe where we lose to Suriname.

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