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Three things to watch for in Desert Diamond Cup opener against New England

With Real Salt Lake and New England opening their Desert Diamond Cup campaigns tonight, we're taking a look at three things to watch from our side.

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1. How are the new guys fitting in?

We have a number of new and young players that will be doing their best to mesh with the team. It's not always easy — it's usually anything but — but with a new formational approach, the intricacies of the diamond that were apparently quite difficult to teach under Jason Kreis are eased a bit.

2. Who plays where?

Weston took some time and wrote a comprehensive lineup preview of tonight's match, and I'd urge you to read that before you go forward. Look, it's right below this thing. You can click it, then we'll talk about it briefly. I'll wait.

Alright, now that you're back, we can talk a little more. The biggest questions are about who plays in the midfield and up top. At the back, it's just a matter of what player makes the starting lineup today, but elsewhere, we're making decisions about the approach and style we want to use.

3. How's that defending from the front working?

In all good formations (or at least most), almost every player is involved in some defensive phase of play. Whether it's high pressure from a slightly faster forward to positional defending from Alvaro Saborio, the forwards are always going to be involved. If we play three strikers with two wide, they'll need to be heavily involved in the defensive phase — our wide defending will take a new approach.