Welcome back to the TwitBag, my attempt to answer the best questions I get on Twitter with something more than just 140 characters. Now onto your questions...


Early recognition leads to Impact jailbreak goal | Armchair Analyst

Not at midfield – he's a little too linear and not quite smooth enough on the ball in traffic. But as an overlapping right back, Hairston has the potential to be a devastatingly effective piece because of his intelligence in terms of how he finds space as well as his obvious physical gifts.


I hope he continues to get run-outs in that role for Colorado.

I don't buy that the US lack depth at fullback, and am actually a little iffier about depth in central defense at the moment.


DeAndre Yedlin and Jorge Villafaña leave me perfectly content as locked-in starters (when healthy); Graham Zusi, despite public outcry, has been up to the job as Yedlin's fill-in, as has DaMarcus Beasley as Villafaña's; Eric Lichaj wasn't great this summer, but he's had a long and successful club career in good leagues; Matt Polster has a lot of potential at right back, as does club teammate Brandon Vincent at left back (get healthy guys, the Fire need you); Adams may eventually be a defensive midfielder, but right now he's locking down whoever he faces out wide; Justin Morrow still exists and can be a game-changer.


That's a lot of options even without counting Fabian Johnson, who can still play either FB slot and did at a high level last summer.


Regardless, Arena's repeatedly shown a willingness to toggle between a back 4 and a back 5, as Mexico learned to their detriment both in 2002 and 2017. I'm not sure what that means, exactly, for the next 180 minutes, but it wouldn't shock me at all to see the US go to five at the back against Honduras in order to prevent guys like Alberth Elis and Romell Quioto from getting around the edge.


Against the Ticos, though? My guess is it'll be pretty straight-forward:

Armchair Analyst: US points projection, future USMNTers & more in TwitBag -

Expect it to be more of a 4-1-3-2 with Nagbe tucked in to help Michael Bradley defensively, though at times it'll look like a 4-3-2-1 with both Dempsey and Pulisic operating underneath Jozy Altidore.


There's a lot of flexibility and a lot of talent. Enough to get at least four points, which should just about do the trick in getting the US to an eighth consecutive World Cup appearance.


Anything less than that, however, and I'll be holding my breath until October.




Ok folks, I'll be around for most of the afternoon to take some questions in the comments below.