The Fire's goal scoring drought has been no secret to anybody. And it's been a point of contention all year for the club, but it was at no time more evident then in the month of July. They were shut out four times in six games, including the Aston Villa friendly, and only scored two goals the entire month. To go a bit further, Marco Pappa leads the team in goals scored with 6. And last year's club golden boot winner Dominic Oduro only has 5 goals, compared to 12 last season.
It's not for lack of trying however. They've averaged a little over 16 attempts on goal, and in the game against San Jose, they ripped a staggeringly high 24 shots on goal. So, why can't they score more? It all comes down to execution inside the final third of the attack. Follow me after the break for more on my time at training yesterday...
"I think we just need to finish. I think that's the key, our focus in the final third now " said Frank Klopas. "We have to keep working in the final third in training. As far as just our movement and our ability to create a good understanding between the midfielders and the forwards, our movement in the final third because that translates into the game and just keep working."
Things seem to be looking up for La Machina Roja. They equaled their July goal total in just the one game against Toronto, and they were much more creative-attacking more off of possession, instead of relying on the counter attack.
So, what's changing? Fire attacker Chris Rolfe believes the new additions to the squad may have something to do with it, at least, in part.
We've brought in two attacking players." Rolfe said of Sherjill MacDonald and Alvero Fernandez. Although, as he goes on to say, there’s still work to be done. "We've got to work on our chemistry with that. And once we kind of find our form, we'll see a much better production rate."
Sherjill himself almost got one on the last kick of the game, proving the kind of impact he can have. He however, seems to take the cautious approach when it comes to his impact. "I think it's too early to say what my part is. I think the second half was good. But we played good as a team." The promise of more goals was at least made in last Saturday's game againstand Houston for first place, and have a game in hand over each. All they have to do now is perform their fatality on goal scoring. Finish them!