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Outside the bubble: Chicago’s Aron Hyde talks to PSP

Photo: Daniel Gajdamowicz

We tend to work in a bubble of Union babble. To find out what the rest of the world thinks of our heroes, The Philly Soccer Page looked up Chicago Fire goalkeeper’s coach Aron Hyde. Beyond his role with the goalies, Aron breaks down copious tape and seems to know the Union as well as we do!

PSP: Four straight draws… is the glass half full or half empty for you guys?

AH: We feel like we deserve more. We are doing the right things and we deserve three points in there. It’s tough giving up late goals but we were happy with the fight back against Toronto. Maybe we were a little too open at first so we have to concentrate defensively from front to back.

How do you prepare for a team like Philadelphia that is built from the back?

We have enough good players all over the field – players good enough to break any team down. We have skill all over the field so if we play a good match we aren’t worried much about goals.

A guy like Faryd Mondragon who brings an inspirational presence to the field, is that something you can teach?

It comes with experience. Obviously you can look at Philadelphia last year to this year and see what he means. It’s experience, and you learn to make the right decisions, dealing with pressure and keeping a steady head back there. You have to be honest with a goalie. The key is how you react to mistakes. Be accepting of mistakes and don’t place blame elsewhere. Highlight errors, deal with them and make sure they don’t happen again. As a goalie coach I want to make sure guys walk off the training pitch with confidence but learning from mistakes.

As an opposing coach, when you see that a goalie struggling with injury, do you tell your team hey, let’s take more shots?

Maybe you do, but really you are looking at how he handles balls out of play. Can he play it short? Can he go long? How does he deal with those things.

When a goalie plays injured, can it have an effect on the defense’s confidence?

No, I don’t think so. He knows what he’s doing, he knows himself. Do you throw a 21-year old out there? No. Maybe you take that decision out of a young guy’s hands.

When you come up against a team with a struggling offense, are you looking to push forward and pressure them more?

I don’t think Philly is necessarily struggling. They haven’t had as many chances but they put a lot of pressure on the back line and they play pretty direct. When they lose it they try to win it back as quickly as possible. A guy like Seba, his work rate is incredible and he won’t just pressure the back line, he pressures the keeper. Seba’s goals last year were not a fluke, especially playing for an expansion team. Teams are more conscious of his threat this year but I think that team will score.

And 1/3 of the team’s goals this year have come directly from mistakes in the back.

Sure, you look at Tim Ream and Sean Franklin[‘s mistakes] and what you see is Philadelphia’s pressure. Seba, an experienced guy like Ruiz, even Mwanga, these are guys that can score.

Coaches say, “We play our game no matter what,” but on the other hand, “We watch a lot of tape and prepare for how the other team plays.” How much of your preparation is defining your own style, and how much is preparing for the opposition?

For me, personally, I watch tape and look at where the chances come from and where the goals come from. I want to see what to focus on in practice. But at the siame time you can’t forget to just work on strengths and weaknesses. I plan my training sessions based on what I’m seeing on the tape. If you’re playing a team like Houston, obviously you work on crosses coming in because that’s pretty much all they do is put balls into the box.

One Comment

  1. Ed Farnsworth says:

    Excellent read – very informative.

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