Much to the dismay of the Carolina RailHawks supporters , the Rhinos were able to steal a point on Saturday evening.
With 4 defenders out due to injuries (Palguta - Knee, Charles - Hip, and Craft - calf) and T-Bone Bonseu getting called up to the Ugandan National team, the Rhinos survived on defense even though the two players that they received on loan from the Harrisburg City Islanders didn't show up until just about kickoff and were not in the starting line up as Coach Tilley had planned. Ryan Heins and Nigel Marples did come on after halftime and the Rhinos didn't surrender a goal after giving up one in the first half.
Moving forward, there are a boatload of questions as the Rhinos try and turn things around:
- Why did T-Bone have to miss the game when Uganda doesn't play until next Saturday?
- How bad is Atiba Charles' hip injury? Rhinos owner Rob Clark was on the pregame show and said it could be a career threatening injury. Where as Coach Tilley was taking a wait and see attitude. If Charles is done for the season, do the Rhinos have the budget space to go out and get a quality replacement such as say Kenney Bertz?
- Can this team start playing with the sense of urgency they tend to get late in games from the start of matches? This year's team seems to kick things up a notch when they are done a goal late. It would be nice to see that kind of sense of urgency from the opening kickoff.
- Will the training time they will get from their long June homestand translate to more consistent offense? Coach Tilley has pointed to the lack of training sessions as something that has hurt the team early on. So, with the team getting a lot of training sessions, things should improve, right?
- How big of an impact will Danny Earls have starting with the June 7th match versus Miami FC? Could a combination of Earls and Kreamalmayer up the Rhinos right side really improve the offensive attack?
- Will Hamed Diallo wake up any time soon? Or, will he join the long list of forwards to flame out in Rochester?
News & Notes:
- On the heels of Beckham scoring on his side of the midfield stripe, Greg Lalas is dreaming about his four best DP candidates at SI.com.
- US Soccer.com has a load of tidbits ahead of tomorrow's US-England tilt. Benny Feilhaber's woes continue as he is on the shelf for four to six weeks with a knee injury, Frankie Hejduk was called up for the match, and there are a bunch of new podcasts up as well.
- SBI.net talks about who should start for the US.
- Last year, Heather Mitts tore an ACL and missed the World Cup for the USWNT. This year, it's midfielder Leslie Osborne who has torn an ACL and will miss the Olympics.
- Hopefully the Rhinos can make an announcement like this soon.
- So much for the feel good story of the Iraqi soccer team winning the Asian Cup last year.
- George Soros won't be buying AS Roma after all.......
- SBI.net wraps up the US U-23 MNT's forgettable performance in Toulon.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.