USA vs. Brazil: Match Night Commentary

U.S. Soccer Federation   Brazil

The U.S. men's national team takes on five-time World Cup champion Brazil tonight at FedEx Field (8pm, ESPN2). The match will serve as the U.S. team's toughest test ahead of the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Antigua and Barbuda and Guatemala.

The Americans are riding a four-match unbeaten streak, and just posted a resounding a 5-1 thrashing of Scotland on Saturday. Brazil will present a significantly more difficult challenge, with Neymar and Hulk leading a dynamic attack.

Clint Dempsey is not in the starting lineup tonight, but is in uniform for the match, while Jozy Altidore will sit tonight's match out as he regains fitness after joining the team on Monday following a three-week break after the Dutch League season.

SBI will be providing live commentary on tonight's match so please feel free to follow along here. As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Tonight's commentary is after the jump):

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105 Responses to USA vs. Brazil: Match Night Commentary

  1. Nick says:

    Seems like the fact that this an Olympic squad for Brasil is an inconvenient truth…I guess it doesn’t make for good press that our senior squad is playing an (largely) Olympic squad.

  2. ThaDeuce says:

    ESPN three is a GO!

  3. H says:

    Any other good streams out there?

  4. crocajun1003 says:

    Can’t believe we get to see Hulk vs Hercules without having Michael Bay somehow involved.

  5. Allouez86 says:

    5 minutes in and Gooch looks like he’s playing with lead feet. Only 5 in though 😉

  6. liz2 says:

    Not sure if I agree with switching Bradley and Edu. Not looking as cohesive. but that could just be because this is Brazil, not Scotland. Hard to tell for sure

  7. Shaggy says:

    Onyewu looks tired and uninspired.

  8. Brad says:

    Onyewu cannot pass. I forgot how much I hate him playing in the back. Back to a little pressure and boot it ball…

  9. Kevin says:

    i think we need to leave Dempsey on the bench… he’ll get in a fight for sure… this game is getting ugly…

  10. marco says:

    Gooch is terrible, certainly not fit. Why didn’t Klinsmann know this? Edu cannot play as a forward CM. Great play from Johnson down the left, not much from the right side. Two adjustments at halftime, Gooch out, Edu pulled back or subbed out. Torres, Gomez, and Johnson playing well.

  11. marco says:

    I’m waiting for him to raise his hand to come out, unfit.

  12. Adam says:

    I would add Bradley as well.

  13. CA says:

    Gooch and Edu have been our weakest players of the half.

  14. Matt says:

    Id say Edu Out, Torres pulled back into Edu’s spot and Dempsey put in Edu’s spot.

    Edu has been too slow on the ball and he in fact should have been called for a foul on our goal, too slow causing a lot of turnovers

  15. Allouez86 says:

    I’d like to see Torres stay on the pitch but don’t see that happening. Dempsey on for Edu is the only change I want at the moment.

  16. marco says:

    Gooch is also not mentally ready. With all his experience in CONCACAF he gave the ref an easy PK call.

  17. Allouez86 says:

    I lied. I also want Gooch off for anyone other than Gooch. When he’s on he’s a beast, but tonight he’s far from being up to speed with this game.

  18. predicto says:

    I’m seeing Torres overwhelmed by the speed of play. He’s not doing well under pressure. Edu’s doing well in my view. Gooch is also a bit frantic. I’d say Dempsey in for Torres and Goodson for Gooch in second half.

  19. byrdman says:

    Would like to see someone/anyone on for Gooch. His game does not fit JK’s system. No way Gooch and Boca can play together. They are the reason why we can’t build from the back. Bradley has the ball and 2 guys standing behind him. Brazil cuts off the passing lanes, causing balls back to Boca/Gooch they hold it for awhile and either pass it slowly to the other, or lump it out of bounds.

  20. hudson says:

    What’s worrisome is that Brazil hasn’t scored a goal in the run of play yet. I’m thinking they might back off the high pressure in the second half and turn up the attack. Let’s hope Brazil doesn’t put up another two or three so there’s a chance to catch up, especially if Dempsey comes on.

  21. TomG says:

    Something desperately needs to be changed up tactically. Every time we get the ball, we have 2 Brazilians all over us and no passing lanes at all. MB has to loft passes just to complete anything in our end. Our spacing in our end is terrible.

  22. Jozy Wales says:

    Edu has been terrible and I agree Gooch is too clumsy. Boca is not quick enough against a top team. On the other hand, Gomez, Fabian Johnson, Donovan, and especially Bradley have shown the quick and skill required against a team like Brazil. Even Tim Ream would be a better choice than Gooch. I would have called in Eric Lichaj to play the position Edu plays. Lichaj is one of the fastest US players. Why didn’t Marcelo get a card for kicking Cherundolo? Oh I forgot he is obviously a Brazil fan . Maybe he can get their autographs after the game. Brazil scores after the ref lets them getting away with an obvious foul.

  23. robert daniels says:

    Edu has looked terrible. He’s not good going forward.

  24. Kevin says:

    these young kids are hungry and looking to crush us… will we feel as bad after they bring home the Gold?

  25. Jozy Wales says:

    I was referring to the ref being a big fan of Brazil. Jones was fouled in exactly the same manner he drew a yellow. But of course, the Brazilian didn’t get a card. The US team should take acting lessons

  26. Adam says:

    I’m not sure you are watching the same game as the rest of us….

  27. blag says:

    Defense is ball watching. They are not sticking with the runners

  28. blag says:

    Neymar does it every time. Passes and runs. Nothing fancy, just basic soccer and the defense is either not fast enough or not paying attention each time.

  29. TomG says:

    Lack of Altidore is really telling tonight. Having that hold up player against Italy was hugely important to our possession game. Hopefully Boyd can provide some of that.

  30. TomG says:

    Just place it Terence! Our boy needs to show some finesse to go with his exuberance.

  31. mike says:

    How many times are you going to give Donovan credit for Gomez shots? They don’t look that alike and you have done it on multiple occasions.

  32. Eric says:

    Couldn’t agree more

  33. TomG says:

    USA getting great chances since switching to 4-4-2.

  34. TomG says:

    True – annoying but these stupid silver numbers are unreadable.

  35. Barrett says:

    How many times does Gooch have to blow it one game for people to admit he just isn’t the same player any more.

  36. BF says:

    lol on altidore…gomez just displaced him as a starter

  37. Andrew H. says:

    Onyewu is responsible for every goal tonight.

  38. matt says:

    gooch accountable for 3 goals in this game alone.


  39. mike says:

    True but the games announcers seem to be fine.

  40. jones says:

    I think the biggest problem was the way Klinsmann set up the formation at the start – particularly in the midfield.

  41. Alluez86 says:

    Good lord Gooch is not fit. To be out there. Sad but true.

  42. BF says:

    4-3-3 is a problem???

  43. John Hayden says:

    Taylor twelllman was brutal as color

  44. Cornelius says:

    I agree that the formation choice wasn’t best, but Gooch was suspect regardless.

  45. BF says:

    you said that right…the back line is a project at this point.

  46. Jozy Wales says:

    This game is exposing Klinsmann’s poor judgment . He calls in Castillo who isn’t half the player Lichaj is. Castillo was totally responsible for the fourth goal. Lichaj only starts in the best league in the world. Maurice Edu shouldn’t even be on the roster. He and Boca play in a league which is rated lower than the Cyprus League. Gooch is much too clumsy.

  47. jones says:

    The way he set up the players in that formation was the problem.

  48. jones says:

    um, no.

  49. Ben says:

    Gooch cannot play anywhere near how Klinsmann wants. If you are going to be a diaster defensively, you may as well put someone out who can pass. Not only sis he play terribly, but he looked like he want to leave the game.

  50. hudson says:

    So this is what it’s like to be Scotland.

  51. Barrett says:

    Wrong. Castillo played Pato offside, as did the rest of the line, except Gooch. Castillo is not at fault when he moves with the line. Gooch is at fault because he didn’t.

  52. Ricky B. Free says:

    We need to move on and leave Gooch behind. Boca passing wasnt great but at least he can defend.

  53. Ben says:

    *did he play

  54. BF says:

    what would you have changed?

  55. Ben says:

    he can barely move. I’m shocked at how poor he was

  56. Ricky B. Free says:

    And thats how we know you just hate a player for the sake of hating him lol. Castillo played it perfectly, it was our clumsy CB Gooch that gave another goal away.

  57. Jozy Wales says:

    Zack Whitbread played well for Norwich as a CB .In the games he played Norwich allowed significantly less goals per game.Anyone would be an improvement over the center backs on the current US roster. Tim Ream improved greatly and was one of Bolton’s best players and at least has good skill on the ball. That’s more than could be said about Gooch ,Boca and Goodson.

  58. Federico from Texas says:

    I agree Gooch has become a liability.

  59. marco says:

    Gooch and Donovan involved in all 4 Brazil goals. Gooch is not fit (too tired to step out on last goal), and Donovan let Marcelo run by him constantly. Dolo has Neymar so Landon has to stay with Marcelo.

    Good news Johnson was terrific again, and Herc was a handful. Bradley was steady. Edu cannot play CAM, or anywhere near the attack.

    Klinsmann must act now to fix these problems. And don’t put another unfit player Jozy, on the pitch against Canada.

  60. predicto says:

    I’m happy – the USMNT played high pressure defense & played one touch attack – and kept it up the whole game. No more bunkering! But let’s face it, brasil has both a superior offense & defense, & limited what the US could do. We did have our chances though!

  61. sam says:

    Positives: Bradley, after getting caught on the ball a couple times, was absolutely superb. Calm distribution, precise passes in space, a threat to open up the defense. Gomez. Fabian Johnson: solid defensively, extremely skillful in attack. And I thought Torres did some of the better work in an otherwise rough first half.

    Negatives: Onyewu and Donovan obviously had rough games. And I’m a bit concerned about Cherundolo. Yes, he was marking Neymar. But Brazil’s attacks tended to develop on his side of the field.

  62. predicto says:

    Ho! Exactly.

  63. Eric says:

    I have never wished we had Nevin Subotic more than right now.

  64. Allouez86 says:

    I see where you’re coming from, but have to disagree. While Lichaj does start in the EPL, he only started a few games at the end of the season for a team fighting relegation. Klinsman told us that. Castillo had a good season for a strong team in Mexico. Also, theyre both playing for backup positions at this point seeing as Johnson is a beast at left back. I’d like to have seen Bradley and Edu switch rolls tonight. In regards to Boca in the back, who would you have put in his place?

    And Gooch is clumsy.

  65. sam says:

    Or maybe Marco is right just above, and the weakness of the right is mostly on Donovan.

  66. Indigo Montoya says:

    Creating chances was a bit of a ray of sunshine in the second half. On a different night that match may be 3-3 before Pato nails a winner. Some nice keeper play on both sides tonight.

  67. Ricky B. Free says:

    We need another CB, RB and to get Edu off the pitch. Oguchi has nothing left for the international game. Dolo was constantly beaten on his side and provided nothing going forward.

    Edu disrupts the flow of the game for the US.

  68. Nate says:

    Brazil dominated possession as expected but their four goals are as follows: harsh (but not unreasonable) pk, offside play leading to corner, goal from guy who tried to kick our guy in face on previous play, and offside play.

    We have it hard enough against Brazil without that poor refereeing standard.

  69. jones says:

    I’m not sure why Klinsmann had Edu so far up the field and Bradley so deep. It changed how those three central players worked together, and essentially had Bradley stuck defending the whole time. I’m sure there was some tactical reason for this, but whatever they gained by doing this also removed many of the positives.

  70. Jozy Wales says:

    No? Castillo is better than Lichaj? You obviously know nothing about soccer if you can say someone who plays in a 2nd rate league is better than Lichaj who starts in the best league in the world and is probably faster than anyone currently on the US roster.

  71. sam says:

    I think what we may see is Torres slotting in for Edu in the center of the midfield, with Bradley playing the deep-lying position as he did tonight.

    As for CBs, I think Ream and Cameron are legitimate prospects; one or both needs to really integrate, though. And yes, it’s time to call Lichaj.

  72. Fire Klinnsman says:


  73. andrew in tally says:

    thoughts on tonight. Our centerback tandem is weak in the possession game. gooch and boca are prone to giving the ball away in dangerous spots.
    Bradley’s game has improved exponentially. He’s the real deal.
    Edu- not so much. He just doesn’t look comfortable on the ball.
    That Johnson deke before he crossed was worth the price of admission.
    Decent game from Donovan but tonight we see the difference between him and Dempsey. Donovan plays in awe of top competition. Dempsey believes he is as good as anyone on the field and plays that way. Marcelo got the better of Landon on every key play tonight.
    Gomez adds something special in a 4-4-2 formation.
    Not a a pretty scoreline but a spirited performance. We still have work to do.

    Cherundolo- his crossing his not one of his strong points.

  74. predicto says:

    Top: Gomez & Bradley & Jones
    Flop: Onyewu & Torres

  75. jones says:

    Also, Edu doesn’t have the passing (or trapping) skills for this more advanced role and lost the ball too much. If you’re going to have him in there for this game, put him in front of the defense where he works best and have Bradley go forward more.

  76. Ricky B. Free says:

    All 4 goals were legit.

  77. Spank says:

    I normally wouldn’t say this but I think we would have been better off with cameron for gooch and parkhurst starting instead of dolo. Those old legs sure did show tonight

  78. ACC says:

    and there it is folks!!!!! The blame the referee post.
    There was nothing wrong with the referee, Brazil was that much better.

  79. David J S says:

    switch Edu and Bradley back to the lineup vs Scotland. If you don’t think Edu can play that role than play Beckerman. If you think you need Bradley at defensive mid, then play Torres or Corona in the advanced mid role not Edu.

  80. sam says:

    Clearly the referee-blaming is wrong, but Brazil wasn’t 4-1 better. US deserved another goal, possibly two.

  81. jones says:

    My disagreement was with your statement that Castillo was responsible for that goal, which he wasn’t. I agree with Ricky B Free below. And personally, I haven’t seen enough of Castillo or Lichaj lately to make any judgements, so I won’t.

  82. Ricky B. Free says:

    Lol You really need to learn about soccer. Gooch was terrible but Torres was not bad, he was just average because the guy playing next to him cant control or pass the ball (Edu).

    Brasil hardly attacked from the left side of our defense thanks to Fabian and Torres.

  83. Jozy Wales says:

    Lichaj started 9 straight games playing against some of the best players in the world. Who didn’t Castillo play against? Lichaj played against much better competition and is much faster than Castillo. Klinsmann is showing poor judgment not calling in Lichaj and with the terrible CBs he has not giving Whitbread a chance to play. Lichaj should take over Cherundolo’s position. Few if any of the Brazil players have the speed to just run past him.

  84. GW says:

    Sure. Eric Lichaj in and we beat Brazil.

    I love it.

    The US was great when we torched Scotland but now that a Brazil side that could probably beat most teams in the world, Olympics or not, is being dominant, Klinsmann has “poor judgement”.

    Talk about fairweather bandwagon jumpers.

    I’ve never seen a US team come close to begin to come back on a Brazil team before.

    With a little luck these guys tie Brazil.

    Unless I’m very wrong this Brazil team will play Mexico soon and Mexico needs to be concerned.

    Uneven performance overall but hardly worth the sort of hyperbolic weeping and gnashing of teeth that will soon be posted.

  85. Ricky B. Free says:

    thats exactly what I was thinking. Leave Torres in and get Edu off the pitch. Bench Gooch and incorporate Lichaj for the next set of qualifiers.

  86. jones says:

    yeah, I think this is right on. There were several other lineups/formations that would have made more sense – I was baffled when I saw how advanced Edu was. I also liked the lineup Ives had suggested with Torres, Bradley and Jones in the midfield, Gomez and Donovan outside and Boyd in the center.

  87. GW says:

    Oh yeah?

    Gooch, Boca and Goodson can all get on a field for more than a few games in a row.

    Whitbread can’t. All his skill is useless to the team if it is sitting on the trainer’s table.

  88. predicto says:

    Torres constantly lost possession or made poor turns/touches into traffic. Replacement by Dempsey was necessary.

  89. jones says:

    It already has been posted, be warned!! (*rolls eyes*)

  90. jones says:

    nice assessment!

  91. GW says:

    Marcelo and Neymar have all those Euro signs behind their names for a reason.

    You know who the US missed tonight?


  92. sam says:

    I don’t remember him giving it away much. Maybe the stats will prove me wrong, but I thought he was mostly isolated in the first half and actually did well a few times to move into the middle to provide Bradley with an option.

  93. Jozy Wales says:

    Your statement is how I know you are a moron. Is it politically incorrect to criticize Castillo? I don’t think he is good enough to play on the national team. I think to say someone who plays in the Mexican league against much inferior competition is better than Lichaj who plays in the best league in the world and started 9 straight games after returning from injury shows ,is ridiculous. I’ll give my opinion whenever I please.

  94. sam says:

    You’re right. Hulk isn’t exactly a nobody on the other side, though.

  95. Jozy Wales says:

    I know Castillo played against more stiffer competition. Lichaj started 9 straight games and only started against Chelsea ,Man Utd, Tottenham, Newcastle, Arsenal and Liverpool among his 9 straight starts.

  96. TomG says:

    Unfortunately, even an old Dolo is still faster than Parkhurst. Parkhurst is slow for a cb and pretty glacial for a rb.

  97. Meat1 says:

    So is your mother

  98. Meat1 says:

    idiot!!!!!!!!The ref sucked. What the f##k were you watching?

  99. Jozy Wales says:

    Perhaps my statements about Klinsmann were too complicated for a moron like you to understand. Lichaj is one example of his poor judgment in who to call in. The US obviously had major problems defending against Brazil. It is simple logic. If the US has players (Lichaj, Whitbread, Ream) in one of ,if not the best league in the world regularly playing well against many of the best players in the world why not call them in his camp. Bocanegra and Edu played in a terrible league. Bocanegra is not good enough to play in the Prem any more and Edu if he ever had the talent, his skill has deteriorated when he plays against such world powers as Hearts and Motherwell. Maybe Klinsman is under pressure to call in players to make the team more diverse. Obviously Gomez makes the team better but I hope I’m wrong but the bullsh-t about Castillo letting a player just wrong by him and then blame the convenient scapegoat Gooch is correct. Players on the back line when they move up to play the off side trap must check that the other 3 are in sinc. It’s stupidity to just move up without making sure the other 3 defenders are also in a straight line. If Gooch was keeping the Brazilian who scored the 4th goal onside all Castillo had to do was quickly glance to his right for a second and he would have seen Gooch was keeping the man he was responsible for onside. Instead he was out of position and didn’t even look to his left until the player was past him and wide open to score. Castillo has never played well against any good teams and he was at fault on the 4th goal. I still am not sold on Torres clearly being better than Feilhaber. Benny Feilhaber would have been just the right type of player to use against Brazil and to be on the team. He played well in the last world which is more than could be said of Torres.

  100. Texas_Boss says:

    For discussion only:
    Chandler/Lichaj – Edu – Boca – The Beast
    Bradley – JJ
    Donovan – Jozy – Dempsey

    Essentially a 4-3-3

  101. Jeff says:

    Right on.

  102. Jeff says:

    I agree that the ref was way too noticeable. Don’t think it really affected the outcome much, nor does the outcome really matter much given that it’s a friendly. But he didn’t have a great game. There was an obvious foul missed in the lead-up to the third(?) Brazil goal as well.

  103. Jeff says:

    I don’t see Donovan as intimidated. He just had a bad game.

  104. bryan says:

    no, he did not. he was fantastic in the first half with his possession. our entire section was having a conversation on how good he was doing. torres played well last night, but kind of dropped off in the second half. that coupled with his yellow, plus Dempsey needing minutes, meant he got subbed off.

    i agree about gooch though. which is too bad because i really like him.

  105. bryan says:

    honestly, i don’t think parkhurst would have been able to do any better. but man, brazil was really coming at us on that side. johnson/torres were much better than dolo/LD. but neymar/marcelo is a much harder match up.