Technique, as the ninth commandment of Cruyff says, is the base. It is a simple concept in appearance only that will perhaps filter through to the United States as well after the latest MLS Cup final. The Sounders won, taking just three shot and never on goal, after an extremely passive match. In the end, the Toronto players were left with their proactive game plan in their hands as they watched the opponent celebrate.
And to think that the asymmetrical 3-5-2 that Greg Vanney designed was very aggressive and compact, with the defence playing close to the midfield, looking for the early counter-attack, and the midfielders tightening up the space in the ball area to try and win it back as quickly as possible. In the phases with ball possession, Osorio moved up through the lines, joining either Giovinco or Altidore in order to gain the upper hand behind Seattle’s double pivot, while either Beitashour or Morrow were always deep and wide to provide breadth.