Seriously, what more can we expect?

The following was a response I posted on my favorite message board ( to a good friend and fellow Revs supporter in in the country that Hamlet was from.  Twiggs (aka Twiggster, a die hard Leeds supporter) is less than thrilled with Steve Nicol.  I liked my resonse so much that I had to post it here.

Twiggs - agreed that the first 25 minutes WERE shite - Especially Igwe....thank god Heaps is back this weekend. But the rest was a gritty win. We came back from being a goal down twice... that is something that the Revs could definitely NOT do last year. We even came from behind in the penalty kicks!

I think Nicol has done very well with the squad he has. Consider for a moment that 6 of the 11 starters on the pitch last night weren't even on the senior squad last season, and neither Castro nor Tierney were even in the league. Heck Tierney was still in college! Yes the veteran presence of Reis, Ralston, and Joseph carried us last night, but the youngsters stepped up and held Pachuca to a goalless draw until Khano's PK, and the reserves have been getting it done in the US Open Cup as well.

Imagine what this team will be like when Twellman gets his legs back and Parkhurst and Heaps return to the back line. With Albright and Igwe firing balls in from the wings, Ralston can play behind the forwards giving Twellman, Dube and Mansally the support that they need. Nyassi is still burning defenders on the right and Castro is providing great service from the left. To be honest our problem is still the forward line! Dube and Mansally are generating chances but not converting. A veteran presence on the forward line (read Twellman) is what this team needs. Cristman is just not good enough to be more than a supporting forward (no offense Adam).

Now you may ask why hasn't Nicol signed somebody... well frankly that is not his job. It works differently over here, and the GM Craig Tornberg and VP of Player Personnel (and former Revs all star defender) Mike Burns work with Nicol and Mariner to make those deals happen. And with all the fixture congestion plus Nicol coaching the all-star team, he hasn't had any time to even scout out anybody...but you could argue that you don't even need to when your team has been getting it done.

Then there is Noonan. You could argue that he would be the Richie Cunningham to the Fonz that is Taylor Twellman,  but Nicol and co. KNOW Pat Noonan's strengths and weaknesses better than we know our ABC's. By trading him to Columbus, we get an extra draft pick, more allocation money, and we move up in the allocation table (to third place from tenth!- which means when players like McBride and Noonan come back to MLS we will be higher up in the pecking order). Plus we aren't really helping Columbus in the long term, because sooner or later Noonan will break down and end up riding the bench. If he plays more than 15 minutes a game I will be very surprised.

SO it remains to be seen how we fare the rest of the season.  I think this weekend's match against Chicago will be the true test.  But if we lose - you can't blame Nicol.  He has been the most successful coach in MLS history. 
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