Ecuador absolutely demolished Colombia in the qualifiers for the World Cup. They set up in a 4-2-3-1 which changed to a 3-4-3 in possession. Ecuador played direct which was really effective and managed to get through on the wings time after time. The home team, playing in the stadium of LDU Quito, quickly scored two goals and managed to score two more in the first half making it 4-0. James Rodriguez scored a penalty in stoppage time but two goals of Ecuador in the second half made the score 6-1.
- A1 – Very good, could play higher
- A2 – Strong potential to play higher
- B1 – Good, strong player at level
- B2 – Potential to be strong player at level
- C – Average for the level, re-watch
- D – Below average in this match
- Nationality: Ecuador
- Age: 19
- Date of birth: 02/11/2001
- Current Club: Independiente del Valle
- Position: Central Midfield
- Secondary Position: Defensive Midfield
- Preferred foot: Right
Moises Caicedo started this game, on paper, as the left central midfielder in a double pivot with Jhegson Méndez. This was the case out of possession, but Jhegson Méndez dropped deep between the two central defenders in possession and Moises Caicedo was the sole defensive midfielder. This led to him getting a lot of touches on the ball and he was tasked to be the playmaker for Ecuador. Caicedo had the most passes of the team and did very well in progressing the ball further up the pitch. He still had some inaccurate and very sloppy passes, but in general he made the right choices and knew when to play a pass into the attack and when to choose for a short pass sideways.
The Ecuadorian 19-year-old spread the play well but mainly chose for short(er) passes. He used his right foot significantly more than his left foot, but that does not mean that he can’t play with his left foot. Caicedo got an assist after he beat his opponent through the air and passed it into the feet of Robert Arboleda, who did not hesitate at all and volleyed the ball bottom corner. The youngster has a lot of flair in the ball and used some good feints to get past his opponent. Moises Caicedo has a good shot from distance. Defensively, he is very good in the defensive duels as he uses his physical ability to push opponents off the ball.
Caicedo covered a lot of space in defence and he never got dribbled past. He has good acceleration and pace, while also having great stamina as he kept running for 90 minutes.
Rating – A1
It is hard to give a rating when covering an international match but it seems clear that Moises Caicedo has outgrown Independiente del Valle and that he should move to Europe, preferably to a top club in Portugal or a midtable team in Spain.
- Nationality: Ecuadorian
- Age: 20
- Date of birth: 01-11-2000
- Club: Sporting
- Career: Independiente del Valle
- Position: Right Wing
- Preferred foot: Left
Gonzalo Plata came on in the 30th minute or so and was the replacement of the injured Adolfo Muñoz. He played in his preferred right-winger position and managed to impress, but also got a red card. Plata had a lot of variation in his positional game and showed good understanding of Ecuador’s tactics. He either sticked close to the sideline or moved centrally where he would get a lot of involvement in the game as well. When sticking close to the sideline, he usually liked to carry the ball with his body open to cut inside. However, he did not always choose to do this and even nutmegged James Rodriguez when he went on the outside.
As always, Plata created a lot of danger from the wings and liked to take on his opponents. He started off a bit slow, but after giving a great pre-assist for the 4-0 he gained confidence and had an impressive game. His pre-assist was a cross pass towards the back post to Robert Arboleda, who headed it down to Xavier Arreaga who scored from close range. Plata liked to play a lot of smart passes which led to some passes being inaccurate, some of them being over the top passes to overlapping full-backs. This is not a problem as long as he creates a few chances or pre-assists as above mentioned. He constantly created danger in front of goal and completed all his dribbles.
Gonzalo Plata scored a great goal in the second half after combining with Angel Mena in the tight spaces, but he took off his shirt and got awarded the second yellow card which was the end of Plata’s game.
Rating – A2
He is not a finished product, but deserves to play more minutes for Sporting and arguably needs a permanent move away from them. However, since he still has a long contract he will probably get loaned out if the chance is there.
- Nationality: Ecuadorian
- Age: 22
- Date of birth: 12-12-1997
- Club: LDU Quito
- Career: El Nacional, LDU Quito
- Position: Left Wing
- Secondary position: Second Striker, Right Winger
- Preferred foot: Right
I’m only writing down my notes because he only played 30 minutes as he got injured:
- Active out of possession, actively trying to cut passing lanes and closing down gaps in defence quickly.
- He is very quick on the first meters and capable of turning his opponent, keeping calm in possession and under pressure.
- He drops deeper in the half-space when Ecuador are in possession on the left.