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The Dreaded 2009 Q&A July 20, 2009

Posted by Master Shake in General blog.
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Time for the dreaded question and answer segment with Bob Ehrlich. Many hated the bio I did on Bob last season, claiming
bias against the Stoners. Nothing could be further from the truth, it was a personal interest story, nothing more, it just so happened
he had a beef with them and I wrote about it. Get over it.Time for the dreaded question and answer segment with Bob Ehrlich. Many hated the bio I did on Bob last season, claiming
bias against the Stoners. Nothing could be further from the truth, it was a personal interest story, nothing more, it just so happened
he had a beef with them and I wrote about it. Get over it.
So take heart, I’m sticking to a format this year.
PA: The Snow released their coach very early on, and never seemed to recover. What happened in that situation?
BE: Paulo [DaSilva] was hamstrung by his lack of English.  Having played with him, I know he knows the game.
His lack of knowledge about what American players know (and don’t know) also worked against him.  He also tried to
format a playing system on the boys that they didn’t get and/or would have taken some time to get used to.  There is
precious little time to prepare a team, especially with the ridiculous playoff system that they [NPSL] had.  You saw that
first scrimmage against Morris County; the boys played very well.  There was no reason to dictate radical change right
before the season.  The first time we tried the system, we lost 4-0 — to our reserves!
PA: Was there a perceived focus problem with either the coaching or the playing?
BE: I’m sure there was some.  The revolving door of players didn’t help.  I think the key for these boys is communication.
They need to know what to do and what is expected of them.  Believe me, kids do their best work when they have a clear
idea of what to do.  It’ll be something we need to work on next year.
PA: So why did it seem, from match to match, that the team couldn’t get going either offensively or defensively?
BE: The main issues were that A) a wide variety of players suited up, and B) players were playing out of position a lot, mostly
out of necessity.  There was no consistency at all.  Remember last year, the Stoners mostly went with their starting eleven for
the last 5 games or so.  That kind of consistency is key.  They [Snow] were missing key players and missed Danny Drago all year…
PA: Were there fitness issues? Did they practice enough?
BE: I don’t know about that.  They seemed OK fitness-wise.  They certainly didn’t take advantage of either scrimmage or training
opportunities when they had them.  I know Tom [Ehrlich] worked out on his own, but he was coming off injury.
PA: How do you feel about the competition throughout the division? Which teams caught your attention?
BE: The league was about the same as last year, with Buffalo being stronger and Erie a good addition.  Stoners played nice
soccer and I thought they were either second- or third-best.
PA: Speaking of Erie and Buffalo, what’s your take on the CCFC/NPSL forfeit issue at the end of the season?
BE: I think Buffalo was done wrong by the league.  Pure and simple.  I believe they are looking for legal recourse and it cuts to
what the league is all about.
PA: So is the league keeping up its end of the bargain as a governing entity?
BE: That sounds like a loaded question.  I’m not at all sure what the money went to.  The way the league was scheduled was an
absolute horror story; it seems as though it was designed by someone who never even saw a soccer game the playoff situation, the
CCFC incident makes me wonder if they are even watching what’s going on.  The reaction on your blog tells it all, I’m afraid!
PA: Any thoughts for 2010?
BE: We’re talking to some folks about opportunities, but it’s still early.  We need to get over the shock of losing almost every game…
the thing is that there is a lot of turnover in this league and the quality necessarily fluctuates accordingly.  I think we have a good reserve
program, filled with some truly excellent players and we’ll see a couple of kids from there.   We started a women’s team this summer that
has had mixed results, but our youth teams are doing well.

Time for the dreaded question and answer segment with Bob Ehrlich. Many hated the bio I did on Bob last season, claiming bias against the Stoners. Nothing could be further from the truth, it was a personal interest story, nothing more, it just so happened he had a beef with them and I wrote about it. Get over it.

So take heart, I’m sticking to a format this year.

PA: The Snow released their coach very early on, and never seemed to recover. What happened in that situation?

BE: Paulo [DaSilva] was hamstrung by his lack of English.  Having played with him, I know he knows the game.  His lack of knowledge about what American players know (and don’t know) also worked against him.  He also tried to format a playing system on the boys that they didn’t get and/or would have taken some time to get used to.  There is precious little time to prepare a team, especially with the ridiculous playoff system that they [NPSL] had.  You saw that first scrimmage against Morris County; the boys played very well.  There was no reason to dictate radical change right before the season.  The first time we tried the system, we lost 4-0 — to our reserves!

PA: Was there a perceived focus problem with either the coaching or the playing?

BE: I’m sure there was some.  The revolving door of players didn’t help.  I think the key for these boys is communication.  They need to know what to do and what is expected of them.  Believe me, kids do their best work when they have a clear idea of what to do.  It’ll be something we need to work on next year.

PA: So why did it seem, from match to match, that the team couldn’t get going either offensively or defensively?

BE: The main issues were that A) a wide variety of players suited up, and B) players were playing out of position a lot, mostly out of necessity.  There was no consistency at all. Remember last year, the Stoners mostly went with their starting eleven for the last 5 games or so.  That kind of consistency is key.  They [Snow] were missing key players and missed Danny Drago all year…

PA: Were there fitness issues? Did they practice enough?

BE: I don’t know about that.  They seemed OK fitness-wise.  They certainly didn’t take advantage of either scrimmage or training opportunities when they had them.  I know Tom [Ehrlich] worked out on his own, but he was coming off injury.

PA: How do you feel about the competition throughout the division? Which teams caught your attention?

BE: The league was about the same as last year, with Buffalo being stronger and Erie a good addition.  Stoners played nice soccer and I thought they were either second- or third-best.

PA: Speaking of Erie and Buffalo, what’s your take on the CCFC/NPSL forfeit issue at the end of the season?

BE: I think Buffalo was done wrong by the league.  Pure and simple.  I believe they are looking for legal recourse and it cuts to what the league is all about.

PA: So is the league keeping up its end of the bargain as a governing entity?

BE: That sounds like a loaded question.  I’m not at all sure what the money went to.  The way the league was scheduled was an absolute horror story; it seems as though it was designed by someone who never even saw a soccer game the playoff situation, the CCFC incident makes me wonder if they are even watching what’s going on.  The reaction on your blog tells it all, I’m afraid!

PA: Any thoughts for 2010?

BE: We’re talking to some folks about opportunities, but it’s still early.  We need to get over the shock of losing almost every game…the thing is that there is a lot of turnover in this league and the quality necessarily fluctuates accordingly.  I think we have a good reserve program, filled with some truly excellent players and we’ll see a couple of kids from there.   We started a women’s team this summer that has had mixed results, but our youth teams are doing well.

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