Pacific FC thrashed Waterhouse 6-0 in CONCACAF League action. The Jamaican side was totally outclassed tactically, technically, and physically from just about minute one. Both sides played in 4-3-3s that often turned into 3-4-3s in attack but the gulf in class was so big it didn’t make much difference what formation either side played.
- A1 – Very good, could play higher
- A2 – Strong potential to play higher
- B1 – Good, strong player at level
- B2 – Potential to be a strong player at level
- C – Average for the level, rewatch
- D – Below average in this match
- Nationality: Jamaican
- Age: 17
- Date of Birth: 24/07/2005
- Current Club: Waterhouse FC
- Position: Centre-Back
- Preferred Foot: Right
Romain Blake played as a centre-back in this match and, obviously, things didn’t go exactly to plan. Blake had quite a tough out as he was matched up directly with CPL golden boot top scorer Alejandro Diaz who is big and skilled. It was pretty clearly a challenge that Blake is not quite ready for but he showed some signs that he might be one day.
First, the positives; Blake was just about the only Waterhouse player that looked comfortable playing a forwards pass. He was able to play line-breaking mid-range passes and play long-range passes into Pacific’s final 3rd with surprising regularity. His teammates did not do very much with these passes but he was playing them with good accuracy. He also dealt reasonably well with the onslaught of Pacific attacks but there were some areas where he clearly needed some improvement. Blake made a lot of good clearances by being well positioned to attack crosses. Despite his shorter stocky frame, Blake was quite good in the air, making several last-minute headed interventions that spared Waterhouse further embarrassment. He did a decent job of defending 1v1, though he was not perfect. Particularly, he did very well when isolated 1v1 against Marco Bustos, making a very good tackle on the long-time CPL star.
But with these positives also came some negatives. The biggest was that he was just awful at tracking the movement of runners. Diaz got the better of him constantly by making runs to his blindside. Blake was frequently caught ball watching and was made to pay for it. Sometimes he was caught out of position when trying to make defensive interventions, though Waterhouse’s poor defensive player overall did not help. Decision-making and dealing with the speed of the game will be things that Blake has to work on.
Rating – B2
Blake was clearly not ready for a CPL-level team but he did show some positive attributes. It will be worth watching to see how he establishes himself in Waterhouse’s first team domestically. It’s might make it to a higher level but that will be at least two or three years in the future. He needs a lot more reps playing against men before he sets his sights abroad.