U.S. settles for 1-1 draw at Guatemala

Jones (Getty)


Before Tuesday's trip to Guatemala City, a 1-1 draw might have seemed like an acceptable outcome for the U.S. national team. The Americans, after all, knew they would be facing a hostile environment and desperate opponent. But as it turned out, the result left much to be desired.

Guatemala substitute Marco Pappa's superb 83rd-minute free kick negated Clint Dempsey's first-half tally as the U.S. settled for the tie, moving to 1-0-1 in the semifinal stage of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying. The U.S. currently sits atop its group, level with Jamaica at four points but ahead on goal differential.

After controlling the match for long stretches in the opening stanza, the U.S. struggled to hold off Guatemala's second-half surge, conceding several opportunities before finally getting burned by Pappa's equalizer.

Stepping over a 25-yard free kick following Fabian Johnson's foul on Carlos Ruiz, the Chicago Fire midfielder curled a left-footed shot over the U.S. wall and past a motionless Tim Howard.

The U.S. went ahead in the 40th minute when Dempsey collected a pass from Johnson, evaded the flailing tackles of two Guatemalan defenders, and slotted a low shot into the back of the net for his 27th international goal and second in as many games.

U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann offered no surprises in his starting 11, using the same lineup that picked up a 3-1 win over Antigua & Barbuda on Friday with the exception of Johnson, who returned from a calf injury.

Coming off a 2-1 loss to Jamaica to open the stage, Guatemala failed to find much cohesion going forward in the first half, often falling into a defend-and-counter strategy and looking to earn set pieces in the attacking third. The Americans, meanwhile, struggled to find the final ball until Dempsey broke the deadlock.

The strike came just moments after Guatemala had a chance at the other end, with Howard turning away an angled blast from Carlos Figueroa.

Klinsmann used his first swap at the start of the second half, bringing center back Geoff Cameron on for Clarence Goodson, who had picked up a yellow card. Guatemala, on the other hand, used all three of its substitutions, adding attackers Pappa, Manuel Leon and Dwight Pezzarossi.

The gamble paid off. Guatemala found increased confidence going forward as the half went on, and the home side should have leveled the score in the 68th minute. Mario Rodriguez forced a stellar save from Howard off a corner kick and the rebound fell straight to Ruiz, but the veteran striker skied his point-blank rebound effort over the bar.

The U.S. will return to World Cup qualifying in September, with a pair of matches against Jamaica: Sept. 7 in Kingston and Sept. 11 in Columbus, Ohio.

This entry was posted in CONCACAF, International Soccer, U.S. Soccer. Bookmark the permalink.

267 Responses to U.S. settles for 1-1 draw at Guatemala

  1. downintexas says:

    We played like crude in the second half. Got screwed by the ref, its called playing the advantage. And Klinsmann had no answers. Really only one sub. Is the bench that bad???

  2. bill rider says:

    awaiting the day we have someone dangerous taking set pieces.

  3. rana says:

    Landycakes, had no shots on goal, enough said

  4. downintexas says:

    Fine two subs. but come on klinsmann

  5. downintexas says:

    The US looked afraid to shoot. Unless they sent the ball 40 feet high.

  6. KevDC says:

    Uninspired play. Poor possession. Few shots on frame (and quite a few wildly off).

    On the road or not, the US should beat Guatemala…always.

  7. Joe from El Paso says:

    Landon looked limp. No more letting J Jones take free kicks. How about Cameron and Goodson in middle for next game??? Not too bad all things considered….

  8. Weaksauce says:

    First time I have ever seen a soccer game played on Concrete. The ball was bouncing higher than a basketball.

    That game sucked. It time to bring in creative midfielders. We dont need Bradley, Jones, and Edu on the field at the same time anymore. 3 midfield players that are DM’s are not creating enough chances. We need players in the midfield who possess the ball.

    The aging backline needs to go —–> Dolo and bocanegra

  9. Jermaine says:

    That was about as entertaining as a vasectomy…4 defensive mids in the 90th minute…yeah, this was a “breeze”

  10. Amru says:

    We desperately need an attacking player in the midfield. I understand the logic behind the three D MID’s but it give us absolutely nothing going forward and kills the attack before it even starts

  11. Neruda says:

    Poor finishing in second half for US. Some potential open looks that nobody wanted to take or they skied over the crossbar (Jones free kick) and the Altidore goal should have stood. Pappa had a perfectly placed free kick but Howard seemed like he didn’t have the wall settled or something. This should have been three points for the US.

    Donovan wants to hand the reigns over to someone else it looks like. Who’s it going to be?

  12. CA says:

    Decent result for us in a place that’s tough to play. It wasn’t pretty, and it wasn’t our best football, but we should be happy with the point.

    I thought Edu and Jones had a bad game, and I’d like to see LD shoot more instead of pass.

    A side note: all the doom-and-gloomers who are sure to post here are either half drunk or new to the USMNT. It’s always tough playing in some of these concacaf nations. Sloppy results and points are ALWAYS a part of our qualifying path. Nothing new here. We’re doing just fine so far.

  13. Mike says:

    A penalty not given, a goal disallowed.

    Donovan is done. Period. He’s checked out.

    Gomez would have scored that goal on the Bradley ball. Jozy stopped his run and watched. That’s the difference.

  14. Eric120 says:

    Great, let’s not try to improve and do better.

    Mexico beat El Salvador 2-1 in the Cuscatlan tonight and sit atop their group with 6 points. How come they aren’t relying on a “sloppy results on the road are OK” excuse?

  15. Neruda says:

    He looked too timid and a few runs forward he was too selfless, content to dish the ball instead of creating his own havoc off the dribble.

  16. Neruda says:

    I hate DECENT results against Guatemala. Pappa is good but everyone else for Guatemala is a hack or a flopper or super duper old like ruiz. How about great results.

  17. R.V. says:

    Tough to say if Landon is done, hes only played a few games on the USMNT after a very long layoff with the team. He himself might have to make some adjustments to what Klinsmann wants done.

    Remember, we are talking about a player who his whole career has played under the umbrella of Arena and Bob ball.

  18. dgoshilla says:

    Howard: 6 – good saves completely fooled on free kick which was not out of reach
    Goodson- 5.5- Dumb foul.
    Boca: 6.5-Best game from him in a while.
    Dolo: 4.5- slowed up play, didn’t get forward, almost gave up PK
    Johnson: 6- made good runs, looked vulnerable 1 v1, gave up late foul
    Cameron:6-looked decent in the air.
    Bradley: 6.5-moved the ball well, ran the counter, defended with strength
    Donovan: 5.5-Needed to take on the defense in 1 v 1 chances.
    Edu: 4-gave up more passes than he completed
    Dempsey: 6.5-finished well, nice physical play
    Gomes: 6.5-looked dangerous, got wide, showed experience
    Altidore: 5-touch was bad, didn’t do much of anything when given the chance
    Beckerman: NA

  19. Indigo Montoya says:

    Easy, they’re better than everybody else…at this point.

  20. ozzy says:

    The coach has no vision, trust me on this one. He talks about attacking soccer, blah, blah. Where was that tonight. He had no game plan or adjustments in either qualifier. AND I hate to say, those are our best players out there.

    We did not get behind their defense more than twice. That is not attacking soccer. This guy is in over his head and he has no one on staff that can bail him out.

    Maybe we can play the hungover Scots every game from now on

  21. Angel of LA says:

    Where is the explosive offense that Klismann has promised. When I first I heard that Klismann has be pointed as USA Coach I was excited but I guess don’t ask for what you wish for. Klismann was a bit a revelation with Germany in ’06 with the help of Loew bringing new life, youth, speed and technical to the Old Germany. But I don’t see that. We blame Bradley for playing a Bunker(Defend)Football(soccer)but Klismann is almost the same. Yeah we have Possession and we have more technical but no offense. when you want to play a true 4-3-3 u have to used players with speed and technical on the wings especially true forwards. I don’t see this. I where Gatt, Gyau, Boyd, Lichaj, Mixx, Adu, Corona, even Chandler (Reason for him not to come to play here is cause he not liking what he see in Klismann and playing not his natural Position.) it is time to bring new youth, new blood to this National Team. I think if Klisman have used a line-up for offensive as he said he will.

    Johnson==Boca==Goodson===Dolo(Chandler) prefer.

    Bradley all by himself and didn’t take a shot instead pass to the middle, as everyone else try to do. Donovan what happen to his speed and take a one on one go forward to the goal. Jones and Dempsey too much holding the ball and trying to do many tricks. Edu hold his place but sloppy passes. All I have to say WTF.

  22. RR says:

    Amen to that one. When is Jurg going to understand the difference between Gomez and Jozy!!

  23. Timbers Fan says:

    I feel sick. I am not an angry guy, but I want to punch a Guatemalan player. Dirty, mean, overacting divers.

    Ref was crap. Altidore goal should have counted–why not give the advantage?!?

    Easy goal at the end there…but Altidore makes a DEAD STOP on his run in the box.

    US looks like crap these last four games.

  24. dgoshilla says:

    Jones had a bad game? I thought he was one of the bright spots.

  25. Twon says:

    The ref robed El Salvador, offsie goal not called. Mexico had problems with El salvador.This is Concacaf, hard fouls and poor refs

  26. Goalscorer24 says:

    I think Klinsmann needs to take a hard look at some other players between now and the next qualifiers. We need some new blood.

  27. Artie says:

    remembering the day we couldn’t score on the run of play but only on set pieces.

  28. ex_sweeper says:

    El pescadito strikes again! Still creating goals by flopping, but now he lets someone else take the free kicks. Back in the day he would have taken it himself.

    Other than the missed advantage call, which was very unfortunate, I thought the ref did a decent job. He called fouls pretty evenly on both sides and didn’t buy most of what the Chapines were selling.

  29. JJ's shin says:

    Screwed by a bad call in Central America…imagine that. Should’ve been an advantage and Altidore scores all day.

  30. Brad2 says:

    I wrote a thousand comments in the chat box about how the USA wasn’t running at the outside defenders to get around and outside of them. And the times that we did there weren’t USA players in the box (Jozy!!!). I’m not saying we have to do it every time, but the passes back from the wing become predictable.

    While we are getting better at passing through the middle, it makes the defense’s job easier and it allows them to break quicker than when the ball is in the corner/behind the defense/out for a goal or corner kick.

  31. Jim Morrison says:

    Is this on a 1-50 scale? If so I AGREE with your grades

    Mike your observation on LD is right on. I have said all along I don’t think he will even want to play in 2014. Four WC are a lot and he is a soft kid, let’s face it.

  32. Timbers Fan says:

    ya, he was yelling like crazy just before the kick was taken. couldn’t make out what he was saying. it was a good kick, but something funny happened on that one.

  33. Amru says:

    I think Altidore’s touch and hold up play are better then gomez, but gomez makes those crashing runs into the box where as jozy likes to get the ball at the top of the 18

  34. cj says:

    That Mexican goal had two men offsides. Even the Mexican announcers were mocking that goal.
    I wonder if Donovan is better suited as a sub, rather than a starter. In the gold cup the US played better with him coming off the bench, rather than starting. Can create some serious matchup issues. This maybe the best talent on the team but is it the best team?

  35. Mike says:

    I’m not too worried.

    Playing in Guatemala is less about playing soccer and more about avoiding red cards and injuries. You’re going to be screwed by the officials, USSF doesn’t care. You’re going to play on a trash surface that’s most likely been watered significantly prior to the match in order to take you out of your game. You are going to get hacked relentlessly and hard. The other team won’t be penalized for their fouls and you may be called for fouls when you yourself are fouled.

    You won’t get a penalty called. You will have goals taken away. You will not be able to really play soccer.

    That is what playing in those sh*tholes is about. It isn’t soccer.

  36. ben in el cajon says:

    I didn’t watch the game, so did Jozy start?
    Nah, I’m foolin’. I know Gomez started. But your position is that he should go the full 90 and Jozy should never play?
    That’s silly.

  37. Twon says:

    I wonder do fans know how hard it is to play in central america, Mexico didn’t look great against El Salvador, hard fouls,poor fields and poor refs, its concacaf.

  38. Angel of LA says:

    yeah the last sub his used only with 30 second to end if I was Kyle I would have pull a Tevez on Klismann and tell him off. I think it was an insult on him and to the USA Team. Is not like where winning of we had time for kyle to turn the game around.

  39. danny says:

    I thought the U.S. moved the ball around pretty well (with quick passes) given the pressure that Guatemala was putting on them and given the atmosphere. I think Klinsman is responsible for this. The refs were terrible (to be expected) and the U.S. players seemed to ignore the late dirty challenges, when I think they could have made a better case to the ref. The U.S. had plenty of chances and Landy should have been more aggressive. Jozy was disastrous- commit to your run and you have an easy goal off the sweet pass from MB. Overall, it was a decent result for the U.S. but disappointing because they were the better team. But it was a nice wake up call for the new guys to what away games are like in CONCACAF.

  40. Timbers Fan says:

    i’ve had a vasectomy, so i can point out some differences.

    30 minutes of discomfort vs. 90.

    at least a vasectomy is a novel experience

  41. Don says:

    Then why did so many call for Bradley’s head as team coach when we got similar reults last time?

  42. Brad2 says:

    I’d say Jones was pretty good defensively, but going forward he had a couple of bad give-aways and made some dumb dribble runs at defenders…

  43. Ozzy says:

    The breaks all even out JJ. Ruiz misses that shot about as often as I have a date with Jenifer Lopez

  44. Mwing09 says:

    All in all a decent result. I think people can take CONCACAF qualifiers (esp. away) a bit too seriously. Everyone knows there is going to better dirty play, diving, missed calls (mostly going against the US), its not going to be pretty. I view qualifying as just something you have to get through, not something that should really be a judge of how good you are.

    That being said there are definitely things to improve on. We really need more creativity in the midfield (get well soon, Stu). LD needs to be WAY more aggressive. If you have 3 D mids in the lineup, there is no excuse to be timid like he was today. Jozy still needs to learn how to move. You thought Gomez starting would push him, but he completely gave up on his run when Bradley crossed it toward the end. Cant help but think even a tired Gomez wouldve reached that.

    Go get a result in Jamaica. Doesnt matter if its pretty, we just need to stay atop the group. No one start freaking out over this.

  45. Sarasota says:

    We tied a minnow. Yeah, let’s keep playing one forward and three defensive midfielders. It’s such a devastating attacking formation.

    Funny, I had this crazy dream where Bob Bradley was released and German scoring legend Jurgen Klinsmann was hired as US coach. Oh well, it was a nice dream…

  46. Helium-3 says:

    Yeah i had to watch that lazy culero stop running at 84:39 when after visually signaling to MB to drop the ball across the middle, the guy showing his diva like behavior stops running.

    Hope everyone remembers this because it should have been an easy tap in had he continued his run.

  47. Don says:

    Donavan a soft kid? I think I know who is the soft one here and it ain’t him.

  48. Mwing09 says:

    to be dirty play*

  49. ben in el cajon says:

    So, I know it’s the Internet pattern: player X does well, and everyone who always liked him posts to mock all the ‘haters,’ and then, when X has a bad run, all those who always hated him post to declare him useless and explain why Y always was and always will be better, world without end, amen.

    But it’s painfully predictable, and boring.

  50. Benny says:

    What are you talking about? He’s not saying we do not need to improve. Mexico’s second goal should have not even have counted. It was offsides by a mile. They played lousy in Azteca as well. Altidores’ goal should have stood but that’s the way it goes. The U.S. is going to win this group. We learn from this ecperience and move on.

  51. Seriously says:

    Well he started Gomez so I dont see what your point is there…

    I think the time off the AZ forced on Jozy screwed him up for us. He was making those runs durring the season and now he is out of sync. Should have been an easy goal on a good feed from Bradley.

    If the ref hadn’t allowed Guatemala to play like thugs all game though we would probably have been up more already though and not to mention not allowing a goal to stand and not calling a pk when we had a player chopped down in the box, defender never touched the ball.

    Its tough to play good flowing soccer against a team that just fouls you all the time and is allowed to do so with no cautions. The foul number for Guatemala is ridiculous.

    All things considered not a bad result. We’re on top of the group with arguably our toughest match behind us.

  52. Don says:

    Klinsmann needs to take a hard look at himself.

  53. jya says:

    Then you missed the Saprissa games in Costa Rica now that was concrete

  54. jim morrison says:

    Angel, good point. Possession without a final pass is useless. MB needs to be higher up the field. Jones is a train wreck waiting to happen (mark my words) but he speaks the same language as the HC so he will never come out. So if you have to have him in there, let him clean up for MB and let MB move higher up the field. He is by no means a playmaker but he may be the only one who can put players through on the final pass.

  55. Mike says:

    Everyone calm down.

    This is CONCACAF in Central America. It is hands down the most difficult place to play in all of international football. Spain/Germany would have trouble with these teams on these fields in these conditions.

    And I am completely serious with that statement. Getting out with a draw given what transpired with the pitch, official and everything else is a good result for us.

  56. Jermaine says:

    Bwhahahahah…now that is entertaining! I should have given you that wasted $30 dollars!

  57. JJ's shin says:

    I’m not saying Landon’s national team days are over, but I feel like maybe he needs a sabbatical from national duty. His head just isn’t right.

    I’d like to see Torres in the midfield with Bradley and Jones. How is it that we all can see that the midfield needs more creativity, but Klinsmann can’t?

    I’d also like to see Adu called in for the next round of qualifiers. He always seems to step up his game and make a difference when playing for the U.S.

  58. Brad2 says:

    I think we attack enough, but it’s with little passes through the middle, which against Guatemala might work a couple times but makes us look like crap against good teams. Not enough emphasis on getting behind the defense and making them play with their back to the offensive USA players…

  59. Spank says:

    i agree! I’m all for LD and Edu to the bench and Jones in Edu’s spot. I like Jones but he’s not creative enough and gives the ball away too much. I wish i had all the answers but i don’t!

  60. Brad2 says:

    Boyd’s not a winger

  61. Seriously says:

    Describes what I saw pretty accurately. Should we have won even minus the Jozy goal? Sure? Did I expect to see a good flowing game? Hell no. Anyone who did is an idiot, plain and simple. Too many people are following the team without a clue these days.

  62. crocajun1003 says:

    3 subs guys. Cameron for CG. Altidore for Gomez. Beckerman for Donovan.

  63. Lucas says:

    Totally agree with you Mike…WTH was Altidore doing stopping his run? Rust may be the likely excuse, but c’mon, finish your run Jozy!! It’s an easy finish from there. The conditions weren’t great, but not as bad as I’ve seen in the past, and the ref wasn’t that bad either. I’m not panicking, but there was no fluidity, Edu, Donovan, and Dolo killed numerous runs going forward. Are we really that average, slow, and predictable? We have no speed or creativity, except for Demps, Johnson, and Bradley. Why is Edu on the field? Just watched the Mexico/El Salvador game, and you wanna talk hacking, diving, mugging then look no further than the Salvadorans. Guatemala was a walk-in-the-park compared to what El tri had to overcome. They didn’t look great either, but the environments were worlds apart, Mex overcame that, and we did nothing.
    Goaltending saved our asses once again. They’re chances on goal were much more dangerous than anything the US put together.

  64. KC says:

    agree. People that think we can go into Guatemala and win easily must be new to the whole CONCACAF thing.

  65. Mike says:

    Yeah, the fact that we managed to string as many passes together as we did is testament to these guys getting it.

    I can’t imagine what playing in that place must be like when you know that every living person including the officials want you to lose and they will stop at nothing to accomplish that.

  66. El Torito says:

    Wow another boring game. The US has no character, what is going on? We are better than this….. we need to show it!!!. We dont need to play their game, they need to adjust to our. Now it looks like we have no game to begin with. ….. SOS… SOS….SOS….. Mayday….. Mayday

  67. KC says:

    Yes, we are that average. There is a reason we are No. 28 in the world.

  68. Timbers Fan says:

    no matter the circumstances, drawing guatemala is NOT an acceptable result.

  69. Eric120 says:

    He’s excusing a sloppy performance in Guatemala, which I disagree with.

    “Sloppy results and points are ALWAYS a part of our qualifying path. Nothing new here. We’re doing just fine so far.”

    This kind of thinking is wrong. We should not accept sloppy results as just part of qualifiying.

    Of course I hope the US wins the group, but we should not excuse poor performances as “nothing new here, we’re doing just fine.”

  70. g-dub says:

    I disagree. I thought it was actually a pretty entertaining match, with Guatemala pressing hard to score and the US still going forward mostly in the second half. Pretty open back and forth play I thought.

  71. Angel of LA says:

    I think if you used boyd as a winger he can do a better job than Donovan. He can Hustle for the ball and run freely like Gomez does too. something like Villa and Sanchez does in Barcelona, I not saying they are like them just used them like that.

  72. Cris says:

    Ive been saying this for thelast two games, we need Freddy Adu. He is that playmaker we need and he takes very good set pieces. Freddy Adu is the missing link, he has the skill and dribble and he has those killer through balls and long balls. Who cares about his situation with Philly, the national team is different, we need to call him up to be #10 for us.

  73. KevDC says:

    It’s being a “doom-and-gloomer” to suggest that it’s past time that we stop using excuses like it’s a “place that’s tough to play” and the refs sucked? We were playing a team that has NEVER qualified for a World Cup, and whose best player plays for the Chicago Fire while most of their starters play in a weak Guatemalan league. Ours mostly play for quality Euro sides. We should be demonstrably better than them (and I say that with all due respect — they played hard and with pride).

    I know progress is not always linear, but even if this is not a crushing result from a qualifying perspective, it is a poor outcome for a team that aspires to make waves in 2014.

    You can’t sugarcoat this.

  74. syght says:

    One of the preview pieces I read mentioned the Guat coach’s propensity to have his players take set pieces quickly to catch us off-guard, having executed this perfectly in the Guat game against the Olympic squad. They tried it a couple of times and caught us sleeping on the shot.

    Guat crowded every free kick we had to keep us from taking it quickly. We should’ve kicked it into the players a couple of times just to get a card and force them to back off.

  75. DCUPedri says:

    Mexico qualified by goal differential for the Hex in 2008. Then they looked weak for most of the Hex. Then they made the knockout round of the world cup. Now they look as good as they have in ten years.

    In 2005 we blitzed through the hex only to look terrible the next summer in Germany.

    Strange things happen in qualifying. I think its great that soccer is growing in the US, but I think a lot of the commentators flipping out tonight need an education in how these things work every year.

    During qualifying, you put your ego in a drawer and grind out points anyway you can get them. We’ve never qualified “in style”, and frankly, neither has Mexico. Its a survival fittest out there, not a beauty pageant.

  76. syght says:

    Mexico got their winner as late as Guat got their equalizer. Recognizing a point is decent in a tough atmosphere doesn’t mean we don’t think we can improve. Try again buddy.

  77. Cris says:

    Ive been saying this for thelast two games, we need Freddy Adu. He is that playmaker we need and he takes very good set pieces. Freddy Adu is the missing link, he has the skill and dribble and he has those killer through balls and long balls. Who cares about his situation with Philly, the national team is different, we need to call him up to be #10 for us.

  78. mk in sd says:

    calm down, please, he brought in Beckerman to kill time, and salvage a draw, not hoping for a win. This is a pretty standard tactic around the planet …

  79. crocajun1003 says:

    Going in I said I’d be happy with a tie and no injuries. I can’t complain now.

    Seemed to me like no one had a particularly good or bad game.

    In the positions of interest…

    -Edu did what Edu does. Ran hard, won balls, distributed poorly.

    -Gomez had a relatively listless game. He’s good on the ball and makes good runs, but his hold up game is lacking. At this point he’s still probably our #1, unless Altidore regains form before the Mexico friendly.

    -Altidore seemed to do as many positive things as negative things. Odd runs that showed rust, a complete brainfart on the Bradley cross, yet he was robbed of a goal on the advantage, and seemed to be robbed of a penalty.

    Overall I’m taking the point and getting the hell our of Guatemala.

  80. Angel of LA says:

    I know there was 3 sub, I just agreeing with downintexas about the sub, especially the last one when Kyle Beckerman came in for Donovan with 30 second to the game to be over. read my comment pls.

  81. syght says:

    Delusional much?

  82. Ben says:

    Best part of all this is that we have cap tied both Terrance Boyd and Fabian Johnson, Come on Chandler, with you running the right and Johnson on the left, now our attack is dynamic with two flyers at the wing back positions.

  83. mk in sd says:

    trying to shoot out the lights in the towers, from what I saw. well, something to work on in practice.

  84. crocajun1003 says:

    If you’re going to remember that, you’ve got to remember the disallowed goal and the suspect penalty that wasn’t called.

    Jozy potentially could have contributed 3 goals. 1 was his mistake, 2 were taken away from him by the officials…

  85. crocajun1003 says:

    LD accounted for all the goals against AB. He’s not done.

  86. syght says:

    Yeah, we might need to check the IDs of some of these posters. Young’ns got no idea what they’re talking about.

  87. Carlos says:

    Can someone please ask Donavan to remove his tampon. I’d rather see someone who’s hungry an will run at defenders regardless if they loose the ball. Donovan lacks the heart to make a diffence In these games and Jk should make it known that players have to have the skill and heart to start.

  88. Twon says:

    We going to have williams back, Jurgen needs to call in Brek shea and Adu. Both Edu and Gooch need to go. The scottish league, has ruin Edu. I wont get on jurgen,it’s concacaf. I just need him to play better players, Why call up Corona and not play him?

  89. syght says:

    Wait, we played soccer back in ’05 and ’08? I thought the USMNT was just formed and is incapable of losing to CONCACAF sides (sarcasm). You’re spot on here bud!

  90. crocajun1003 says:

    I still can’t figure out the Jozy bad touch thing. His ball skills are fine. His problem right now is figuring out where to put himself.

  91. mk in sd says:

    Michael Bradley has the skill to be more of an attacker, but is getting positioned way too deep, imho. kind of reinforces your idea that we need a true number #10 in there, with vision. I’m disappointed that Landon Donovan seems to be lacking confidence to take players on 1 v 1, and lacking confidence to shoot when he gets a chance. Could it be that that elusive goal #50 is bothering him more than we know? Is he done at 30?

  92. crocajun1003 says:

    Why should we “trust you on this one”?

  93. Angel of LA says:

    I am calm down it just an observation on how the game went, and if you said to salvage a draw thats why he made the sub, well let me tell you right when he made the sub Guatemala almost score again. I just saying for Klismann to do that sub show that he did the wrong tactics for this game and he wanted to the game to be over soon. But is all good MK in SD.

  94. Hesyourlifelight says:

    Well he missed it at least once, so how did that date with J-Lo go?

  95. Mwing09 says:

    Ive never been an Adu, but I also havent been one of those people that yelled for his presence every 2 months or so either. That being said this guy^^^ might be on to something. Havent seen a lot of him in Philly but from what I’ve seen from him in youth teams past he could come in and maybe be the best spot kicker on the squad (including corners in the equation). And he has showed he can create going forward (that pass to set up the goal against Panana in the GC was RIDICULOUS)

    Not saying he should be a lock, but interesting to think about.

  96. Mwing09 says:

    an Adu hater*. Woops

  97. Jermaine says:

    Really? Sloppy,fouls galore, constant diving, almost no ideas in the final third…Except for that sweet finish by Deuce. Maybe it’s because I was watching Spain and Italy and Denmark and the Netherlands…but this game was total anti-football to me. I wanted my money back after the first 10 minutes.

  98. g-dub says:

    Despite the result tonight the US showed composure and maturity in the hostile environment. No one overheated. And I noticed our players buying into CONCACAF ‘tactics’ more often than in the past: play acting, complaining and crowding the referee, and staying down to waste time. I don’t like this sort of thing, but it’s par for the course. In my view the officiating was basically even.

  99. crocajun1003 says:

    Thank you, Mike. You’ve restored my faith in SBI users.

  100. crocajun1003 says:

    Can we stop referring to Jones and Bradley as “defensive midfielders”. They are among the best attacking players we have.

  101. CA says:

    I don’t know who you guys think we are. We’re not Germany or Spain, and we’re not gonna dominate our region 4-nil, 5-nil. It’s just not gonna happen fellas (and ladies).

    This is the fourth World Cup cycle I’ve watched closely-I was too young and don’t remember 94 and 98. So far this cycle is going exactly as I expected. Our current crop of players are very good (some are great, ie Donovan/Dempsey), but the team in general is upper middle class. And the squad will struggle against a Guatemala/Costa Rica at home.

    We’ll qualify and get out of our group. And if we get hot we’ll make a run deep in the tourny. If you expect more than this then your optimism is greater than mine (which may be a good thing:)

  102. Lucas says:

    Mike, with all due respect to your “I’m completely serious” statement with regards to top footballing teams like Spain, Germany, and I’d throw in the Dutch, Italy, Argentina, etc having “trouble” playing teams like Guatemala at home sounds insane! Obviously, you’re a well schooled student of international football, because a casual fan wouldn’t make such bold statements. Great teams, shoot good teams, adjust to the horrific environments you speak of. Spain, Germany really?! Shirley you can’t be serious

  103. Angel of LA says:

    I think no one here is thinking that is a Cakewalk to go to Guatemala or any hostile environment and win easily but when your team is not taking any chances, like the one Bradley or Donovan had to score and instead they rather pass it of course you are not going to win. And for checking the IDs let me tell you I probably way older than you. Sometime this young’ns have good idea of what they are talking about is their opinion and we have to respect them like they should respect yours.

  104. crocajun1003 says:

    To add to what MK said about Bradley, we really need to stop say we have 3 DMs on the field. Jones and Bradley have excellent attacking qualities. Bradley especially has been the engine of the offense.

    The 4-3-3 we are playing allows for 5 (and sometimes 6 players when the LB overlaps) to be involved in the attack. It is not what I would call a defensive formation.

  105. Donovan did not seem like himself all game. He did not assert himself and take guys on. Always passed back or to the middle, never beat a guy to the end line and deliver a good cross, except in the last minutes of the game.

    Altidore’s performance is a reminder of why he is not starting. Not finishing his run and not anticipating that Bradley might square it to him is just really unacceptable. Gomez is not the best back to goal player, but he was much better than Jozy.

    Johnson played extremely well … except for the unnecessary foul on Ruiz near the end of the game. He did not need to commit that foul as Ruiz’s touch was heavy and he had defensive help. That foul was a bit “naive” and it cost a win.

    Why didn’t Donovan, Dempsey, or Bradley take our free kick shots on goal? Gomez and Jones are not free kick specialists.

    Disappointed that the US didn’t get the 3 points. I agree with other posts, we should be beating teams like Guatemala on a regular basis, home or away.

  106. g-dub says:

    To each his own. But for me I was on the edge of my seat for the second half. Yes it was very physical, but also a lot of passion. I think the challenge of playing in an extremely hostile environment and trying to overcome that is good entertainment.

    I also thought the subplot of Pescadito and Pappa as MLS vets playing with an edge against the States was entertaining. Pappa played a great game.

  107. CA says:

    DCUPedri: How dare you speak reasonably! :)

  108. g-dub says:

    Pappa’s freekick had a pretty wicked swerve/dip on it. If you watch it, it looks like its going way over then kind of knuckles down and tucks under the bar. I think Howard was basically fooled. Great free kick really. Hard to get it up and down from that spot. I think the wall was set, but a little strange they didn’t jump. Maybe that was intentional?

  109. Kevin_amold says:

    Jones gives us an edge I think we need. Maybe he collects cards, but he hasn’t been sent off yet, he hasn’t really hurt the team, to the contrary he has helped us.

  110. Gonzo says:

    Adu is very dangerous…Donovan isnt

  111. Kevin_amold says:

    Agreed. Other than the terrible advantage, I thought the referee was adequate.

  112. Amru says:

    While I agree Bradley has some offensive capabilities, Jones does not. Jones is comfortable on the ball and doesn’t make stupid passes, though does not have the ability to make an incisive pass that springs an attack. Jones is a great destroyer, nothing more. I would like to at least try a torres bradley jones midfield.

  113. Nick says:

    Agreed. The trials and tribulations the US goes thru now will benefit the team later

  114. Marcos says:

    the next qualafier is not until september i believe. With that in mind i hope players like brek shea and juan agudelo push themselfs into the roster. We have a decent touch but now we need those goals that end up being so valuable in this group stage. It would also make our current players more aware that their spots are not secure. (jozy)

  115. g-dub says:

    I agree that Edu is the weakest link in this lineup and had the worst game tonight. He’s just not good enough on the ball going forward. (And for all the grit he’s supposed to bring, I saw him muscled away a couple of times including once to give up a clean shot at goal at the end of the first half.) I too would like to see Corona swapped in as the third CM. Adu is a defensive liability and better suited as a winger. And speaking of wingers, if we wanted a different left footed winger on the roster Shea should be ahead of Adu.

  116. Kevin_amold says:

    I thought the game was pretty entertaining.

  117. Kevin_amold says:

    Fabian Johnson did not need to be cap tied. One-time switch.

  118. Kevin_amold says:

    Indeed. I do not long for those days…

  119. Illmatic74 says:

    Just because it was a good result doesn’t mean people can’t be disappointed in the performance.

  120. CA says:

    It must be difficult being Landon Donovan. The guy scores a hatrick against Scotland and has a very good game against Antigua Barbuda. Then he has a mediocre-at-best game at Guatemala and douchebags on soccer blogs are proclaiming his demise!

    I hope he goes to Everton permanently…

  121. QuakerOtis says:


  122. Tyler says:

    I think he simply needs to be more assertive on the field. He kind of went LeBron on us and has tried to have an impact by being a great teammate and getting guys good looks but he has to understand his role on this team is to be selfish and take shots. Perhaps a change of scenery might help him get his mojo back?

  123. Sergio says:

    To be fare…Guatemala is better than El Salvador, and Mexico’s game winner was a golie error.

  124. Jovins says:

    Argentina lost what, 5-0 to Bolivia last cycle? Playing out of your element on crappy fields is hard for everyone.

  125. louis z says:

    it was actually for the final 3:30 minutes, including extra time. but the bigger question, why LD, why not Demps, or someone else, I think we are seening a change in the guards.

  126. Kenny_B says:

    “We should not accept sloppy results”

    What should happen then instead? Did you hire the team and coach?

  127. Dude says:

    Worst decision so far by Klinsman:
    a.) Torres starting at left back
    b.) Playing bradley and jones at outside mids in a 3 mid formation
    c.) Letting Jones take a free kick with a obvious scoring chance
    d.) consistently depending on the aging boca and dolo combo

  128. Dude says:

    Really? Whose spot isn’t secure? Jozy still played. Bradley, Dempsey, Donovan, Howard, Boca, Dolo, Jones, Edu, Torres (when healthy) all seem to have very secure positions. More than half the roster is always a guarantee. We need truly open competition at every position.

  129. BFBS says:

    Some discipline as to who the plausible free kick takers are is in order. I would have thought neither Jones (right at the top of the penalty area in the 2nd half) nor Gomez, in the first, from 35 yards out, had any business taking them.

  130. Chg says:

    Germany or the Netherlands wouldn’t win 4-0 in Guatemala with CONCACAF refs. Spain might, but only because they might be treated fairly. Guatemala has always been a dirty team. I’ll take the point and no injuries, and hope we don’t have to go back there for four more years.

    CONCACAF road games are a joke.

  131. Chg says:

    100% serious. Some of the teams you list would likely fare worse than the US, simply because they’re not used to the flagrantly unfair officiating and pitiful playing conditions. CONCACAF is awful.

  132. Tobin Rodriguez says:

    Guatemala is a much better team right now than El Salvador and Mexico looked poor in many of the same ways we did. A very pretty and unstoppable free kick is all that separated us from 3 points. I agree with CA, after watching all the US qualifying campaigns since 1988, this is what it looks like. Win at home and a draw on the road is a good result. Of course I want us to do better but no team is walking in to Guatemala, Cuscatlan, Tegucigalpa or Kingston and coming out looking pretty. These are tough teams who play well at home. There will be no walkovers. The US got some hard knocks last night and this is how it is going to be. The way we gain ability, in these away encounters is going to be the true measure of this team and our coach. I remain impressed.

  133. tobin rodriguez says:


  134. Brett says:

    I’m happy that we got a point away, but if we aspire to WIN a World Cup instead of just qualifying for one we need to beat teams like Guatemala with regularity.

    The free kick thing was baffling. Dempsey and Donovan can both score from free kicks, and Bradley has a strong, powerful shot as well. Why in the world Herc and Jones were on the ball at all is beyond me. There must have been a contest in training or something.

    The ball movement was horribly predictable. Cherundolo STILL can’t seem to provide any service when he gets forward. I’m not as hard on Landon as many are, he provided some dangerous balls but seems to be playing timid. He also seems to have no chemistry with Gomez at all.

    I was most frustrated with our inability to try new plans of attack. Once we got down into the game it was back to the same slow-developing attacks spreading wide and cutting in. Where were the diagonal second and third runs we saw against Scotland? The 1-2 combinations INTO SPACE (not into the crowded middle). Bradley-Jones-Edu is not our best midfield. The only positive I can really take is that the back line looked fine without Gooch in there.

  135. Dennis says:

    The beating the US team is taking here is good. That they have things to learn is unquestionable. Escaping with a tie in Guatemala will (or at least should) not be lost on the players and they will (or at least should) respond to that.

    In many ways, I wish the US had not looked so good against Scotland and Brazil, especially the Scotland game; it is hard to learn much from those kind of games. Games where players have to struggle to overcome adversity are opportunities for them to question themselves and find the answers for improvement. (same for the coaches).

    If we can’t learn from a tough environment in Guatemala, we will have little hope playing in Azteca!

  136. OmarVizquel says:

    The secrets of CONCACAF qualifying:

    Win at home. Pick up points on the road. Don’t lose. But if you do lose, you can still advance.

  137. jake says:

    You clearly haven’t heard of the concept of time wasting.

  138. jake says:

    No, it was really only about a minute or so.

  139. biff says:

    Agree with some of the comments above about Donovan being absent much of the game last night. What I found interesting, was that after Gomez was pulled and Altidore was subbed in, Donovan seemed to perk up a bit and at that point started attacking more down the left wing, trying to feed Jozy. Can anyone remember whether Donovan passed one single time to Gomez?

    I am a big Donovan fan, but after his hat-trick against Scotland he has failed to impress. As I intimated a few days ago, I sense all is not well with inner-team dynamics right now. I can’t put my finger on exactly what is wrong, but I think one hot spot might be the midfield. Why in the heck is Klinsmann playing MB, Jones, Edu at the same time, plus Torres as a left winger and then, I cannot believe it, putting Torres at left back!!!!!??? We all know Torres shines as a central midfielder and that is where he should be playing and where he is needed. Either Klinsmann’s truly believes in this midfield strategy, which I think is flawed, or he is caving in to pressure from a certain high voltage fan group. (And, I admit, I am a Kyle Beckerman fan and am disappointed he did not get any meaningful playing time this camp. I thought he did a good job earlier as a USMNT lone holding midfielder, plus he is captain of his club team and a leader.)

    I would like to see Klinsmann finally exercise some courage and make a clean break with the Bob Bradley past. Yes, a true shake-up would be gut-wrenching, would mean removing a few players from the team and bringing in new players. I have been relatively calm and trusting of Klinsmann since he took over, when a lot of fans were complaining about the slow start. But now we are in WCQ and I am starting to worry that if Klinsmann does not break with the past soon then his tenure stands a much higher chance of ending in failure, which, ironically, is exactly what Klinsmann’s enemies are hoping for.

    One thing I admired about Bob Bradley is his courage, even when it p!ssed me off. When he was coach he darn well put only the players on the team who he wanted, no matter how loudly the fans and pundits howled and, likewise, he ignored those players he did not like for one reason or another–including personal reasons. I have no doubt that if we could magically reverse the current roles and histories of BB and JK, meaning that BB replaced a fired Klinsmann, then there are certain players BB would have never called back to the team. BB would have made sure they were all 100% his guys (which is without a doubt a coach’s right) and he would have been man enough to live with the consequences of his decisions. I am not following BB’s stint real closely in Egypt, but I have the feeling he has had the guts to rock the boat a few times with his roster decisions and his strategy appears to be paying dividends in the form of a lot of wins. Klinsmann has got to quit being Mister Nice Guy, even it means having to endure the screaming from a few fanboys.

  140. Micronesian Justin says:

    And we sit atop our group…What’s your point? It’s not about matching Mexico at this point. It’s about winning our group and then finishing in the top 3 after that…

  141. Andy in Atlanta says:

    I am still at a loss regarding them not jumping…. you simply cant let a guy hit the ball just 6 inches over the wall… it allowed him to get more pace on it which gave Howard no chance when he did not immediately react….

  142. Andy in Atlanta says:

    In fairness they did steal it late…

  143. Digitect says:

    mk in sd, great comments. I felt Bradley was being used more as an attacking midfielder through the first goal, then Klinsman pushed him back to help the defense. But it killed the front possession which meant we had a lot more defending to do. Something we’re not great at anyway. So we paid the price.

    We miss Stewart Holden in a big way, a good attacking midfielder who is a playmaker and is also dangerous by themselves. I think Donovan could fill that roll now, using Altidore and Dempsey in front of him and letting Bradley play more back. (Not that he can’t play more forward, just that we wouldn’t want Bradley in front of Donovan.)

  144. YO says:

    If this is what Jk menat by attractive attacking football, then I don’t want it.

  145. jimmorrison says:

    “Getting it” means creating chances from possession. Any team can keep the ball in front of a defense. As far as creating chances, Guatemala created more than we did.

    Mr. Seriously this game was wide open and was not bogged down in the midfield like so many CONCACAF qualifiers on the road. JK talks about being naive Americans bc we don’t foul. Well someone must be putting acid in his dumplings bc we were “naive” as hell by getting suckered into committing cheap fouls (see Fabian Johnson) all over the field

  146. Grant says:

    They did jump G-Dub, I was looking for that also. Great free kick, but didn’t look too far away from Howard.

  147. Jim Morrison says:

    Mike, you are so right! I read Xavi and Ozil both say that the team they fear most is the 85th ranked Guatemalans. You have zero credibility with that statement. Oh yeah

  148. chuck says:

    If Jones and Bradley are among the best attacking players you have that is a problem. Don’t get me wrong they are both great players, but neither should be pulling the strings in the midfield. Bradley shows glimpses of this, but in the end I think he lacks that elite creativity.

  149. 19561 says:

    Yes he has. We read Angel in LAs comments and wasted our time.

  150. Rivaldo says:


    1. Who else do you play in midfield? Torres excels in central MF? Huh? yes in friendlies. But I will agree that JK has no clue or plan

  151. Ozzy says:

    Well said in the last paragraph Biff. It all boils down to one word….integrity.

    Whether you like him or not BB had more integrity than anyone who ever wore the US crest and the way they pushed him out the door (sure I agree 5 years is a long time) was a disgrace.

  152. pork says:

    I hope your wife is happy.

  153. pork says:

    what are you talking about MB is defensive midfielder.Everyone can be attacker playing in poor league if he play in Bundesliga or Italian league he can’ do much.

  154. pork says:

    eL Salv. is better than gute and Mexico won 2-1

  155. Annelid Gustator says:

    Ffffft. Hehehe. You are a funny dude.

  156. babbalicious says:

    Relax, there are alot of people on this thread over reacting. We are 1st in our group after 2 games with the most hostile away game already done. Do you honestly believe we wont win the group. Then JK can fix a few problems and maybe we have Holden by the time the Hex starts. Its ok people, we’re fine.

  157. pork says:

    you sound like an idiot GER- GUTE 3-0 LOL

  158. jason says:

    I’ve ben saying this all along, we need Freddy. Sit him in front of Jones/Bradley, he’s the offensive genius we’ve been looking for….

  159. pork says:

    Donovan was the best USA player ever! Pu—SS-YY boy

  160. Bumby Hemmingway says:

    I have been saying this since the Canada game that this US team is in desperate need of a play creator in the central midfield. Is Adu the answer? Debatable, but he is the best I have seen to fill this role in a US uniform, so far.

  161. pork says:

    possession is never useless socceraboy

  162. pork says:

    no JK needs to dump few players and bunch few more.This team is dead for 2014 some players need to go.

  163. pork says:

    and you think refs in USA are better LOL look at refs in stupid MLS.

  164. Kev says:

    1) Enjoyed that i did not spend $30 when it was streaming free on Front Row!

    2) Jozy looked rusty but I wish he started. I dont think he looked as bad as people say. And he should have had a goal – we got screwed on that non-advantage call. I give credit to Gomez but he doesnt provide great hold up play that we need in that formation. In regards to formation = no wing play and i am sick of our midfielders getting bunched up, getting in their own way. Edu pisses me off and i am starting to wonder what value he has starting. Bradley had an indecisive game – seemed like he was jittered for some reason. bad passes all around.

    3) In Guatemala, it is what it is. For those expecting a breeze for us are living in a dream world and have not watched WCQ before. Guatemala is a cheap side that are great actors. They make the game really hard to watch, play, and referee. That is how they get results against us. With that said, I think we looked better than ever in an environment like that. Thought we had great possession – much improved. In Klinnsman’s words, “we need to be nastier”. We need to be more decisive – get the killer instinct to score – talking to you Donovan! When we had that spell in the middle of the second half – we needed to go up 2-0 and end it. We did not…..

  165. pork says:

    you sound like an idiot my friend if Germany or Spain would have a problem with these teams you should follow baseball not soccer anymore.

  166. pork says:

    are you joking what do you want from that girl to do remove her tampon oh please.You should be nice to her LOL.

  167. hogatroge says:

    Beckerman was subbed in to kill the clock.

    He’s a big boy and a professional, and he knows what his role was last night.

    Suggesting that anyone “pull a Tevez” is pretty silly.

  168. hogatroge says:

    The US didn’t play Guatemala in the Olympic Qualifying tournament.

  169. RK says:

    That pass by Bradley to where Jozy should’ve been…

  170. RK says:

    What do the USMNT and a vasectomy have in common?

    No attack!

  171. hush says:

    Just a poor game imo. We can’t continue to play dry. I know playing in Guate is tough, but in 2012 there isn’t a reason why we can’t go to C.A and win 2-0.

    The U.S is lacking is creativeness. I will continue to say it, we need Adu on the bench for these kinds of situations. Adu would definitely provide offensive spark and more movement for Dempsey, Gomez, Agudelo, Jozy, or who ever is on top.

    Adu & Gyau are the appropriate players to have on the bench.

    It seems Donovan’s head is not in the game. He had a few times the option to make runs to the left, but passed up for some odd reason. Didn’t attempt to shoot on goal or take on players with his speed. He probably needs to start on the bench and put someone out there that really wants to be out there.

  172. jpc says:

    Klinsmann needs more creativity in Midfield. Torres is out, Donovan and Dempsey are playing further up the field… WHERE IS BENNY FEILHABER???? Maurice Edu is not a good player, it’s been apparent for years, he adds nothing going forward, and constantly gives the ball away in dangerous positions. He’s just a body, good teams don’t just have bodies on the field. If you want Bradley and Jones, fine, they are both good box to box players, but someone needs to be the creative force in the center of the field…

  173. Matt says:

    How does the Guatemala coach get away with not starting Marco Pappa? He was far and away their best player last night.

    Tim Howard MOTM. He managed the game so well. I hate to think where we would be without him.

  174. Matt says:

    Also, Shaka Hislop was excellent as a color commentator. His experience in CONCACAF showed and he was fair to both teams.

    The ref on the other hand was poor.

  175. hogatroge says:

    1. Who would you have put into the midfield over any of those three from the current roster?

    2. Who would you have put in from the entire pool?

  176. hogatroge says:


    Away at Jamaica won’t be easy, but they won’t be throwing batteries or bags of monkey blood.

    Plus, we play them away then home, so we have a slight advantage there.

  177. Siberian says:

    oh please.

  178. hogatroge says:

    Agreed on Shaka.

    The ref was poor, but he was also fair. He was a little too card and foul happy both ways. It’s better than poor and biased, though.

  179. TomM says:

    One can still score though.

  180. THomas says:

    Exactly…at that point in the game you have to kill time to guarantee you get at least something out of the trip. Relax, it’s not like Beckerman was put in to score a goal in the dying seconds. Smart sub, I had no problem w/ any of them. Just an individual piece of brilliance got them a point.

  181. Tyler says:

    Benny is in New England, where he belongs.

  182. Gonzo says:

    Timid or flat out scared he’ll get crunched if he turns towards goal? If you’re 1v1 in the goal area an pass off to nobody… You’re useless to me.

    I thought he ran better than the last two games but at the end of the day… he really didn’t do much

  183. Tyler says:

    If we take care of business during the next set of matches we will be in great shape.

  184. fifawitz1313 says:

    Thank you! I used to love reading these message boards but now they are just repetitive, predictable, and boring. While watching the games and a player messes up, in my head I already know a hater is scrambling for their laptop so they can post how player X is not the answer at that position. But, I guess this is the nature of the internet beast.

  185. THomas says:

    Really? You’d rather have one of the most proven and experienced players in American soccer history sit at home and one of the most immature journeymen you’ll ever see on the squad? Don’t get me wrong, Adu could be there, but for Donovan? Come on…

  186. THomas says:

    So bench our captain and most steady player? The one who organizes the back line? The one with almost 100 caps?

  187. Gonzo says:

    BINGO and Bradley is not that attacking mid. We have Torrez, and Klinsmann’s dog house boys…Adu and Benny.

    We have friendlies coming up and I really hope Klinsmann starts addressing this problem. Otherwise, we’re going nowhere

  188. THomas says:

    Really? Edu broke up plenty of counter attacks…Jones and Bradley can go forward and do it well, all while remembering their defensive responsibilities. I think this lineup is good.

  189. beachbum says:

    that was a big play…and a bummer

  190. THomas says:

    I’d agree with this…I’m interested to hear what Klinsmann thinks of the atmosphere/hostility. Didn’t seem too bad at Guatemala.

    But watching the Mexico game in El Salvador…oh boy. Bags of piss splashing all around, armed guards surrounding a field surrounded by a riot fence. Glad we’re not going there.

  191. Mat says:

    Win at home, draw on the road. A winning formula to qualify. Most people here are probably just not experienced enough with the WCQ process to understand that away games in hostile environments are always going to be a challenge.

    A few recent examples:
    – Argentina getting pummeled in Bolivia.
    – France unable to beat Belorussia.
    – Italy drawing to Norther Ireland
    – Croatia losing in Georgia
    – Portugal tying Cyprus
    – Australia tying in Oman
    – Ghana losing in Zambia
    – Nigeria tying in Malawi
    – Cameroon losing to Lybia
    – and the list can go on…

    Fact is: WCQ is not a PS3 game. It’s tough, it’s rough. Teams are playing for their lives.

    Every qualifying cycle on these boards we see the same hysteria and doom and gloom if we don’t win every game by 3-0. The USA always gets a few gray hairs in WCQ, but ultimately we’ve made it to the WC since 1990. The only time we’ve really breezed through WCQ was 2005 and then we sucked at the WC. Our WCQ to the 2002 WC, where we got our best performance in modern times, was also one of the most difficult WCQ campaigns the US has had.

    Now, this doesn’t mean I think the USA played an awesome game or couldn’t have done better. My point is that qualifying is a long process, and so far we’re first in our group so no need to panic. Definitely some areas where we need to improve as WCQ progresses, but so far so good.

    So, everyone take a deep breath, relax. Enjoy our 1st place in the group and have a nice summer.

  192. Jeff_R says:

    +1. USA with all their hoopla is supposed to beat this team. Guatemala is a nobody. Bring on Adu…..he has a playmaking ability that these other players dont have.

  193. THomas says:

    And he’s also not ready to start WCQ’s…Bradley or Shea is more suited there. I’d go Bradley

  194. Robert Daniels says:

    I have been saying this since before Freddy was born, we need Freddy Adu…

  195. That’s exactly why he did it.

    3 points at home, 1 point on the road. That is all that matters.

    The goal is to get into the next round – that’s all.

  196. beachbum says:

    hahaha! good call, and I agree.

  197. Ryan Nanez says:

    whether he broke up plays is irrelevant. because his ability to make a pass after that or even god forbid keep the ball is atrocious. he has the first touch of a 6 year old.

  198. Skeeter says:

    The sky is falling.. it must be qualifications time

  199. beachbum says:

    agreed. can’t blame the ref for this one although he was imperfect, but for our region, on the road, thought he was fine

    the ref was not the problem last night

  200. kevin says:

    He was yelling “Jozy! Jozy!”

    Not sure why, though.

  201. beachbum says:

    I didagree that the official was against the USA…no.

  202. Dude says:

    You are right. However, for me it’s really disappointing. Why? Because we don’t put the right team on the field. Playing a 433 with bradley, edu, and jones, really makes it seem like Klinsman just doesn’t have a clue. What do you learn from playing Jermaine Jones at outside mid? Nothing. Winning on the road is a challenge and that’s why you should either be developing young players with that experience or going with what you know. We didn’t do either.

  203. beachbum says:


  204. Brain Guy says:

    In the 4-3-3 that JK is using, the team needs the outside forwards to do some creating, especially when Bradley has to mind his defensive responsibilities. I just did not get the sense that Donovan was willing or able to fill that role. Indeed, it seemed that Jones had the ball more often in attacking positions that Donovan did.

  205. beachbum says:

    I do not think we can go easily in our region anywhere and win, and i am not some young pup either–been around.

    and we were lucky to escape with a point last night being forced to scamble and emergency defend down the stretch to keep the point.

    the USA was outplayed in the second half so I’m very happy with the one point

  206. beachbum says:

    definitely, and in our region it is fact proven time and time again

  207. beachbum says:

    well said. it’s a slugfest, not a beauty pageant

  208. Dude says:

    Whatever happened to no one is a guaranteed starter? Efforts from Donovan, Jones, Edu, Bradley, and Dolo just haven’t been enough. They aren’t getting it done. It’s been made pretty clear that they are all guaranteed starters no matter how out of position they have to play

  209. Sarasota says:

    No Mas! Comments:

    1. I’ve seen enough of this formation with THREE defensive midfielders and a single, stranded forward–inefficient and ineffective.

    2. Bad player choices– Edu and Torres are liabliities at this level; same for Parkhurst, and Wondolowski who are also not international quality. (same goes for Klejsten (sp) although not called)

    3. No excuse for Lichaj not being on this team.

    4.Ojectively, Adu brings more at the international level than Torres.

    5. Tired of the excuses. We should not be struggling for “results” against minnows ten years after our run at the WC in 2002.

    6. Those who said Jogi Lowe was the man were probably correct. I hope our next coach is an Argentine, a Brazilian or a Spaniard who truly “gets it”.

  210. beachbum says:

    you are so sure a player like Benny could not help this team in the final 3rd?

    he used to help Bradley’s teams in the final 3rd, and so far, Klinsmann’s teams seem to struggle in the final 3rd most outings

  211. Mat says:

    What if we had put a young player in the midfield and the inexperience cost us the game? People would have said we should have started a veteran. Also don’t forget JJ has been an assist machine playing in JK’s 4-3-3, the same 4-3-3 people were raving about after it demolished the Scots.
    Hindsight is always 20/20 that’s the problem. If Altidore’s goal counted we win this one 2-0 and people would not be having these types of discussions.
    Now I don’t disagree with you that we need more creativity and attacking potency, but the main culprit yesterday was really Donnovan, who seems not up to par so far.
    I think the problem for this USMNT player pool, which btw is also in my opinion the best in history, is the lack of attacking midfielders. So JK is kind of forced to play this team, unless he takes some risk with some very green players, such as a Gatt or a Corana say. But again, it’s a big risk in WCQ.
    It’s an endless discussion really: does JK try untested youngsters in a tough WCQ venue or does he go with something more experienced and solid to secure a result? The fact we didn’t win the game gives weight to the former, but personally I’d rather get the points and move on. Once Torres, Williams, Holden, etc.. come back we’ll have more options. Then perhaps in the friendlies in August we can try some young blood on the wings to experiment a bit so we can see if they can be useful come the next WCQ games.

  212. Mat says:

    Yes, we should win every game 5-0 in central America because they don’t know how to play soccer. Let’s fire JK right away because the sky is falling. Start Adu & Lichaj and our problems will be solved. Edu on the other hand is evil and should be banned from playing soccer ever again.
    Jogi Lowe? Didn’t his team lose 5-3 vs Switzerland recently? What a bunch of bums they should have fired everyone and the German players obviously are not very good because they didn’t blow out a minnow, right? Ronaldo should never start again, since Portugal couldn’t beat Cyprus. Obviously Portugal is an extremely weak team. I can’t believe Messi is still playing after Bolivia beat Argentina 6-1. Argentina is obviously a team with no talent and they should fire everybody there.

  213. Dude says:

    Clearly Scotland was an outlier for this team. It means nothing. I love the 433. I was relatively ok with the line up yesterday…..aside from the entire midfield. You say putting the veterans in there was the safe bet for an important match. I say we won despite them.
    Bradley needs to play attacking mid if anything. He has a massive issue with turning the ball over and needs to only be able to do it in the offensive third.
    Jones is a CDM and that’s it. He has some assists but they were no brainers, not creations. I thought for sure he would be red carded in the Guatemala match. Glad he wasn’t, but for me is too much of a risk to ever put on the field.
    Edu needs a chance at a pure cdm role without jones or bradley on top of him, then we can make a determination about him.
    Donovan has turned into a crap shoot. Unfortunately there is no telling what benching him would have done to his ego.
    Cherundolo is too old to play an attacking back style. I don’t think we can afford to have two backs attacking anyway and Fabian is clearly better at it. Also, dolo sure as hell won’t be any faster in 2 years.

  214. Dude says:

    I missed the part in those games where Messi was at left back and Ronoldo was playing Center Defensive Mid.
    My point is the results are one thing if you put out a good squad. When you repeatedly just throw something together you open yourself up to criticism.

  215. fleninho says:


  216. Isaac says:

    … He does have 100 caps.

  217. Mat says:

    I think the problem with Dolo is Landon. The fact Landon has been playing so poorly since Scotland forces Dolo in some weird spots.
    I think as long as Dolo is a starter at his Bundesliga team (i.e. he’s in shape), he probably starts until we can develop someone else. Chandler was the heir apparent, but now I wish that we see Lichaj develop there at his club first. But you’re right that Dolo, though still serviceable, is a question mark for 2014. I still think he’s the best RB we have right now, but certainly we should be exploring finding his successor.
    If Holden can find it again, you can slide Jones in lieu of Edu and Holden in lieu of Jones for more defense/offense balance in that sector of the field. Or danny williams can have a role too. I’m not a huge fan of Torres though I have to admit. I think Altidore should start again (he’s our best pure striker) if 100% fit, and we could drop landon and put deuce on the right and Gomez on the left, perhaps for more pop in the final third.

  218. Mat says:

    I can see how some people disagree with 3 defensive mids. Given our injuries/player pool, what lineup would you have trotted out there?

  219. Mat says:

    was in response to “Dude’s comment in the above thread, sorry for the misclick

  220. biff says:

    As I said in a comment yesterday, I would like to see Castillo, Torres, Corona and Gomez in a staating line-up. I think Donovan would be a great super sub. I would love to see below as a starting line-up. But if MB is on the bench as a sub, Klinsmann is going to feel the heat.






    Klinsmann has had all these friendlies to try something new, like the line-up above, which is what a lot of us wanted (something new), and all we are getting is basically repeat of what we had under Bob Bradley, except using all three defensive midfielders and a crazy experiment with Jose Torres at left back. Do I sound frustrated? Well, I am. That said, I still support Klinsmann. I just want to see him show a bit more courage.

  221. Dudinho says:

    Saprissa may beg to differ that was like watching Futsal on a regulation field

  222. Dudinho says:

    Its hard to score when the hosts basically parked the Bus the game was ok slow at times and i agree the final third is where we would run out of ideas. we had pretty good possession which is a new thing for me to watch. considering that for the last decade we basically defended and countered when we played in central america. some people will never be happy

    this was a tie that felt like a loss we really should have had the win We really needed that second goal to put guatemala away.

  223. M-O-O-N spell Jim says:

    Donovan unwillingness to attack the goal with only 1 defender in front of him was very disappointing.

  224. Dudinho says:

    they had two fluke goals go their way El Salvador was really giving it to them. they won but by the skin of their teeth.

    mexico did not dominate the game like we did in guatemala the problem we had was we let guatemala back in it by not finishing our chances

  225. BrianVT says:

    Bradley should have slotted that.

  226. BrianVT says:

    You misspelled “*over* 100 caps”

  227. BrianVT says:

    Jones had a couple of lazy giveaways. Then again, so did Johnson. Jones was also getting clobbered every time he got within the same zip code of the ball.

  228. Bobeto says:

    I couldn’t agree more…Adu can find holes and put the ball through….now our strikers have to make the runs. He deserves to be there….he is not a kid anymore…

  229. Dude says:

    I agree with most of that. I think gomez, donovan, and dempsey are all better options than altidore at striker. Of all differing opinions about USMNT, the one that I just can’t wrap my head around is how anyone likes altidore. He’s lazy and his skills are miniscule. He occassionally scores, but he’s rarely in the right spot. Gomez is our best option as far as someone who can sniff out a goal and bury the easy ones. That being said I also like Donovan at forward more than at mid.
    Getting Danny Williams or Lichaj or whoever ready to replace dolo is essential. We need to start thinking about boca’s replacement as well.

  230. crocajun1003 says:

    He does play in the Italian league. He plays box to box, and he does it pretty damn well. Edu is our only defensive midfielder in the formation we use.

  231. Dude says:

    It’s hard to say in hindsight…But I am on board with the attack in some order consisting of Gomez, Donovan, and Dempsey. I think it’s our best chance at goals.
    As for the rest I think we could have learned a lot from

    Beckerman and Bradley could both fall back to defend as needed. I really want to see Edu at a pure CDM without bradley or jones around him. But this game wasn’t necessarily the time. Would really be curious to see how Corona’s experience in Mexico would have translated. Gomez looked unphased by the play and the crowd, Corona may have as well.

    I genuinely think that Beckerman gives us all of the benefits of Bradley with a much lower turn over ratio and more accountability on defense. Wish Williams, Feilhaber, Kljestan (deserves another shot), rogers (yes rogers), and quite a few others were options on the bench. the bench is skimpy.

    Guzan needs to be thrown a bone every once in a while so he doesn’t lose interest. He is more than capable.

  232. jermaine says:

    There were actually quite a few 1on1 situations were player with dribbling skills could have turned the tide…but jermaine jones( gotta love that name!) Had feet of stone. Happy? 30 pesos could have bought me a good time in guatamala!

  233. Mat says:

    Altidore is our best striker I’d say. We just won’t agree on this one, which is OK.
    Sure his workrate can be an issue, but he’s a proven track record of scoring goals with the Nats and at his club. At he’s very young so much room for improvement. What’s he achieved at his age for a USA player is quite remarkable, actually: success at international and club level.

  234. Dude says:

    Scoring avg
    Bradley: 15% What exactly is so great about him?
    Altidore: 27%
    Dempsey: 31% Usually not at pure striker
    Donovan: 35% Mostly from midfield
    Gomez: 40% Aging. But our only natural striker.

    Altidore should continue to be groomed. But there’s no way he starts over dempsey, donovan, or gomez. IMHO. He is way short on instinct.We have always lacked someone who finishes the easy ones. He doesn’t.

  235. Dude says:

    Decent ratio for Altidore. But he’s usually the primary target every time he steps on the field. So it’s skewed a little.

  236. bryan says:

    we actually had good possession.

  237. bryan says:

    see, this is what i find ridiculous about USMNT fans. Jones has the most assists (3) since the start of the year for our team (although Johnson may have tied it up last night). he also has one of the highest passing percentages. i don’t understand how you can say he can’t pass.

  238. bryan says:

    i’m with you. this was a very entertaining game and the USA looked good away from home in a hostile environment. probably the first time since i have been watching have they looked that good away from home in a tough atmosphere.

  239. bryan says:

    dude, Jones has more assists (3) than anyone else on the team since the start of the year. he has been very good getting forward and involved in the attack. his foot work is what lets him down. he’s a great passer, has good vision, but can’t dribble like a true attacker.

  240. bryan says:

    i think it comes down to the style in which we get results. when have we ever had that much possession on the road in a place like guatemala? or create as many chances as we did? we were up 2-0 in my mind before the ref decided it wouldn’t be a CONCACAF game without controversy.

  241. bryan says:

    i totally forgot about the missed PK call. he got taken out hard. and i believe JK even mentioned this in the post game that Jozy was limping after that.

  242. bryan says:

    it wouldn’t have been that bad if it was the USA. Mexico and El Salvador are big rivals.

  243. bryan says:

    dude, you are way off based. we attacked more tonight on the road than we have ever done before. we had possession, we had double digit chances (not many on target though…), and outplayed Guatemala for the majority of the match.

    it’s because of the style we played that is keeping people from going insane. had we tied while playing bunker ball, like we use to, things would be a lot more negative around here.

  244. bryan says:

    i’d even try Beasley at this point.

  245. bryan says:

    spot on.

  246. bryan says:

    we didn’t play with three defensive mids!!! we played with one, and used two other players who normally play in a defensive role, in an attacking role. jesus.

  247. bryan says:

    now this is more reasonable. acknowledging that playing those two as attacking options may not be the best idea. personally, i’m not entirely convinced Adu, Benny or Corona would really be able to change that, but i think Adu and Corona deserve a shot. put Jones in Edu’s spot, Edu to the bench, replace Beckerman with Adu on the roster.

  248. bryan says:

    i agree with most of what you said, but you are being overly critical about the chances on goal. we put two goals in the back of the net before they put one in. we were screwed by the ref on the second goal. if we go up 2-0, we go home with 3 points and a clean sheet and everyone would be talking about how great of a game it was.

  249. bryan says:

    spot on.

  250. bryan says:

    absolutely. he just needs to get out of LA and i hope he can go to Everton. i honestly think that’ll get him back into the game.

  251. bryan says:

    jones has the most assists on the team this year so far. so yo are wrong.

  252. bryan says:

    honestly, your comments are insane.

  253. bryan says:

    hahaha dude, you truly think this is a better lineup?! to each his own, but wow.

  254. Dude says:

    who cares where the assists come from? and I also don’t really care about what anyone did in the Scotland match. You think Donovan or Jones has played well aside from that match? No. You honestly think jones is a “creator” because he lucked up on a few assists? His ball skills are dreadful. He’s an enforcer. He’s the exact opposite of what the midfield needs.

  255. AC says:

    You could easily tell Altidore is rusty…He wasn’t continuing runs off the ball that may have been goalscoring chances with passes going no where when attempted as he didn’t run into space….Darn you AZ Alkmaar!….I was disappointed with Howard being frozen on the Guatemala goal….He didn’t even try…

  256. Dude says:

    I have no idea if it is or not…and neither does anyone else, because we’ve never seen anything close to it. I don’t think it’s a better starting defense, but I think it’s extremely important to start getting more players experience at fullback. I would be ok with just about any midfield combination over the 3 man with bradley and jones wide. My example calls for 1 different defender and 2 different midfielders. It’s not exactly drastic.
    Also, anyone who bases their opinion EXCLUSIVELY on USMNT performance can’t possibly conclude that Edu is a better option than Beckerman as a traditional center mid.

  257. Dude says:

    I agree with every point

  258. bryan says:

    i’m sorry, but to argue Edu should sit and Beckerman take his place is silly. we should be trying Williams in that role. or moving Jones back there and having someone like Corona, Torres, or Adu play one of the more offensive mids.

    i just think it’s ridiculous to complain about defensive mids and then put out a 4-2-x-x line up. i would also never play Corona in the slot you have him in.

    to me, our best lineup (still a 4-3-2-1) would be something like what is below. ( ) = players who i wouldn’t mind either:

    ST: Gomez (Jozy)
    LW: LD (Adu/Shea), RW: Dempsey
    LCM: Corona (Torres/Castillo), CDM: Jones (Williams), RCM: Bradley (Chandler)
    LB: Johnson, LCB: Boca, RCB: Goodson (Cameron, Gooch), RB: Dolo (Lichaj/Chandler)
    GK: Howard

    i went ahead and included Chandler because this is a “what i would like to see” list.

  259. bryan says:

    i’m sorry, but you are in the wrong on this one. your opinion is your opinion, that’s fine. but you are clealry in the minority on this one.

    who cares where the assists come from?!?! i do! that’s a very important stat dude. Jones has played well in more than just the Scotland game. i’m not even sure how my comment made you think i was even using the Scotland game as an example. we’re not talking about LD. i alos never called him a creator, did i? but he HAS been creating, thus, the assessment he is ineffective is WRONG. and then your counter point is he was lucky?!?! that’s not an argument for your point. and i agree about his ball dribbling skills, which is why i said the exact same thing and said that continues to be his weakness.

    he is an enforcer on his club team, he is there to clean everything up and commit fouls and take a yellow. everyone thought it was just his style, but as we have seen, he can be more than just an enforcer who gets cards. to say he is the opposite of what our midfield needs is truly ridiculous.

  260. Dude says:

    I don’t really have a problem with that line up too much. But I based my line up on who was actually available to play in the game and the 4-3-3 that JK is clearly leaning toward (and went with).
    My point is really.
    1) Groom new backs.
    2.) Anything but jones,edu,bradley as the entire midfield. Which is what we have been seeing other than one appearance by torres as a mid

  261. bryan says:

    1. Agreed. But if you were discussing players on the roster, then it’s a moot point since we didn’t really have anyone to groom. Castillo I guess, but he got injured.
    2. Ok, but again, with our roster, that WAS the best midfield given our injuries. I’m sorry, but the idea that Beckerman would be better than Edu doesn’t make sense to me. And Corona, who I like, was not ready to start. But I agree he should have come in for Edu with Jones sliding back.

  262. Dude says:

    Cameron is on the bench ready to go. So is Onyewu. If Onyewu isn’t fit (which I don’t think he is yet) why does he get a pass? He shouldn’t be there if he isn’t ready. Hopefully he will be soon.
    In a 433 where the outside backs are attacking, you need a center mid to push up and attack while the outside mids drop back and in to cover…or a center mid to stay back while everyone pushes up and in. I think with the current roster we could do either, but I like the first option…and yes I think Beckerman would be better at that than Edu. I also think that Bradley is showing that he may be a better option at CAM than at CDM RCM LCM or CM.
    Very concerned about Dolo keeping up in an attacking outside back role…especially in 2 more years.
    I have no idea how Torres would be at CM LCM RCM because he never got to play in his natural position.
    I have no idea who is the best CDM because we had three stepping on each other in every match. Consequently no one really ever played that position in a normal sense.
    I really don’t think we have learned much because so many players have been asked to play outside their normal positions.
    Gomez has great instincts and aside from an in form Donovan or Dempsey, seems to clearly provide the biggest threat
    Fabian Johnson looks legit.

  263. bryan says:

    “or a center mid to stay back while everyone pushes up and in” – this is exactly the type of 4-3-3 we play, except i don’t understand why “everyone” need to push inward. the full backs and the wingers are the ones providing the width and staying wide. while jones, bradley and gomez are staying central. of course, like JK wants, players are changing positions as they play to go with the flow of the game.

    as for beckerman, agree to disagree, i’m not going to have this argument again.

    for bradley, he is good going forward, but he has played just fine in a RCM/LCM spot, creating chances going forward and getting back to help on D. in a 4-3-2-1, either the LCM or RCM will essentially be acting as a CAM. i feel like you are getting way too caught up in position labels and not realizing that while he is technically playing as a RCM, he is clearly alternating with Jones as what you refer to as a CAM.

    Dolo, agreed man. i think he has one more season in germany before coming back home. these games showed me that while he is still solid, and should be starting in a group like this, he needs to have a replacement ready to go. i hope that is lichaj (or chandler…).

    Torres, no, he never got to play as a CM. and he was played out of position basically the entire time. him and Williams.

    best CDM, tough to say. but i would go with Williams or Jones. not because Bradley isn’t as good, but because i want him in that RCM/LCM spot. but i disagree they were stepping on each others toes. well, they kind of were in the Brazil game during the first half, and certainly against Canada. but we have seen what they can do when they are playing correctly. last night it was obvious that Edu was the CDM and that Jones or Bradley would drop back to help (if needed) with the other staying up a little to be an outlet.

    agree 100% with your positives.

  264. Bboystef says:

    Couldn’t agree more with you on Boca. All he knows is to play the ball over the top from the back. It’s like watching paint dry.