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U.S. Men's National Team

USA vs. Argentina: Match Night

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Good evening folks. The u.S. national team is set to face Argentina today at Giants Stadium in what should be close to a sellout crowd. The fans arrived here pretty early and it’s looking like a good day/night for soccer.

I will be doing a running commentary during the match so feel free to follow allong here. Please share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section.

Enjoy the match and follow our match night coverage after the jump:

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FINAL- USA 0, Argentina 0. The non-soccer people call scoreless draws boring. Tonight’s match was anything but. The Americans saved their best performance of this rough stretch of friendlies for last.

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90th minute+- Five minutes of stoppage time. Is this ref insane? There’s lightning and heavy rain.

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90th minute- Hejduk for Beasley and I can’t imagine there’s much stoppage time.

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87th minute- Mascherano just saw a red card for a vicious tackle on Donovan. Donovan is walking off and looks okay.

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83rd minute- Freddy Adu draws a dangerous free kick as the rain starts to come down REAL hard.

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81st minute- Tonight’s attendance is 78,682.

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78th minute- Eddie Lewis coming on for Heath Pearce. Great game from Pearce tonight.

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76th minute- I’m still trying to understand why the referee would ruin a great game with a red for dissent.

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74th minute- Kljestan on for Eddie Johnson.

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72nd minute- Mastroeni just got a second yellow for a phantom call. No idea what that was for. The USA is down to 10 men. Mind-boggling call.

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70th minute- Johnson is back on the field.

Yellow to Maurice Edu for a rough challenge.

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69th minute- Johnson appears to have hurt his ankle on a USA attack.

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63rd minute- Frankie Hejduk is on the bench for this match and in uniform. Why is that impressive? He played in the Crew’s loss to San Jose last night (okay, so maybe it’s not that long a flight from Columbus, but still).

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61st minute- Freddy Adu is coming in for Clint Dempsey and DeMerit for Onyewu.

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60th minute- Jay DeMerit will be coming in for Onyewu shortly.

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59th minute- Argentina is definitely a different team when Messi is not in the match. Their attack still creates chances but the speed of their attack is a notch or two slower.

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57th minute- Argentina with another dangerous free kick attempt.

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54th minute- Appeals for a penalty are denied after Aguero looked like he was brought down by Howard. It looked like Aguero jumped over Howard and wasn’t touched.

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50th minute- Donovan has definitely come out with more attacking purpose in the second half. He looks very dangerous early on here.

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49th minute- The Americans have come out with some extra energy at halftime.

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48th minute- Onyewu with a header off the crossbar.

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48th minute- Donovan with a shot blocked out for a corner.

Messi was also subbed at halftime.

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47th minute- Maurice Edu is on for Michael Bradley.

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HALFTIME- My observations from the first half-

Tim Howard has been outrageous today. Maybe it’s the green jersey. Maybe it’s the fact that he’s playing his last game at Giants Stadium. Whatever it is, Howard is making a clear case for being one of the top goalkeepers in the world.

Heath Pearce has put a chokehold on the starting left back spot. He was good in the first two games against England and Spain, but tonight he’s been top notch and probably the best field player for the Americans.

Dempsey and Beasley have been active tonight and concerns about them being rusty heading into qualifying have been answered.

Michael Bradley has looked very good tonight. I hear complaints about him getting starts despite some shaky performances but today he has shown vision and work rate that I just don’t see other American midfielders providing. Also, he turns the ball over but many of his turnovers happen when he delivers a smart pass where a teammate should be making a run but doesn’t.

Landon Donovan has been okay in his 100th appearance. He’s done a lot of dirty work today, but hasn’t done as much in the attack as you would like.

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HALFTIME- USA 0, Argentina 0. A very good first half from the Americans. Yes, Howard has had to make three or four very good saves but the U.S. defense has done well to stand up to a dynamic and dangerous Argentina attack.

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45th minute- Howard SAVE!! WOW, his best save of the day is a jaw-dropper.

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42nd minute- Heath Pearce has been very good tonight. Bradley with a great tackle and Johnson puts a header on goal.

A good game all around from the Americans except for the final pass in the attacking third.

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40th minute- Donovan is still complaining about the penalty no-call. He needs to work on his fall a bit f he’s going to really sell that.

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36th minute- Pearce with a long-range blast that forces a very good save from Abbodonzanzieri. Nice pass from Bradley on that one.

Howard with another good save. He’s been great tonight.

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34th minute- The Americans have done well so far, and US fans should take not that Mexico was down 3-0 by now to Argentina.

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32nd minute- Dempsey with a deflected shot that nearly goes in. The USA corner leads to nothing. Argentina counters but the Americans hold up as Beasley makes a nice play. Beasley has looked fresh today as well. He doesn’t look rusty at all.

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29th minute- Califf with a bad foul in a dangerous spot about 30 yards in front of goal.

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28th minute- Howard with a clutch save on a Julio Cruz shot. Messi splits the US defense with a perfect pass but Howard thwarts a wide-open Cruz.

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26th minute- The USA attack is way too stagnant. Not enough running off the ball and no anticipation of passes.

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21st minute- Aguero just got a header to the skull and is a bit wobbly.

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17th minute- Heinze with a free header that goes over the bar. Who was marking him?

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15th minute- Eddie Johnson has been active early on and doesn’t look too bad so far.

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13th minute- USA with a spell of possession here. They need to create a chance though.

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10th minute- Clint Dempsey looks very lively today. After two subpar performances (okay bad performances) recently, he has come out to play tonight.

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8th minute- The USA midfield has to be better at avoiding turnovers because the Argentina counter is just plain deadly.

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7th minute- Argentina with another dangerous sequence but Califf clears the danger. Another Argentina corner.

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5th minute- Tim Howard with two clutch saves on Cruz. Argentina is pressing, but here comes the USA.

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4th minute- Argentina just looks so scary every time they get the ball. There’s just a speed they can hit at times that the USA won’t be able to handle unless they stay disciplined and compact defensively.

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2nd minute- And we’re off. Messi gets his first touch and his halted by Michael Bradley.

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PRE-GAME- Argentina looks to be lining up in a 3-4-3.

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PRE-GAME- Donovan and Macherano are the captains for today’s match.

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PRE-GAME- Kasey Keller was honored before the match for earning his 100th cap last year.

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PRE-GAME- Argentina’s lineup:

———————-Cruz——————–

–Rodriguez——–Messi——Aguero——–

—————Gago——Mascherano———-

Heinze—-Rodriguez—Zabaleta—–Burdisso

—————-Abbondanzieri—————–

Interesting grouping. Zabaleta is normally a defensive midfielder, but with Gago and Mascherano here, it would seem like either Zabaleta is playing in the back today or Argentina is going to play some sort of 3-2-4-1 with Gago in a more advanced role.

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PRE-GAME- Messi, Aguero, Mascherano, Gago, Maxi Rodriguez, Heinze and Cruz are in the starting group.

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PRE-GAME- Still haven’t seen the lineups but Messi and Aguero are warming up with the group that looks like the starting lineup.

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PRE-GAME- I think we’ll have the US in a 4-2-3-1 rather than a 4-4-2, with Donovan playing in a playmaking rule. That formation worked well against Spain in the first half, though part of the reason it worked well was because of Adu’s work in the playmaking role. I’m not sure if Donovan will be able to do the same things, though his speed could cause problems for

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PRE-GAME- Still waiting on the Argentina rosters. There’s a problem with uniform numbers that is stalling proceedings.

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PRE-GAME- Cooper’s exclusion will anger some U.S. fans but Bob Bradley was pretty clear in his press conference on Saturday that Cooper is still a work in progress.

Danny Califf gets the call ahead of Jay DeMerit in central defense. I know there are plenty of DeMerit fans but he didn’t play much down the stretch for Watford while Califf is in his season in Denmark.

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PRE-GAME- No Freddy Adu in the starting lineup today, which is a head scratcher in my mind. Eddie Johnson has been active in the first two matches

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PRE-GAME- Here is the U.S. lineup for the match:

———————-Johnson———————-

Beasley————-Donovan————Dempsey

————–Bradley——Mastroeni————–

Pearce—–Califf———-Onyew—-Cherundolo

———————Howard——————–

One of the players who won’t be playing today is Kenny Cooper, who isn’t active for the match. Cooper, Drew Moor and Dom Cervi are inactive for the match.

400 comments
  • aristotle

    A great game by the U.S. overshadowed the fact that we were shutout for the third straight game, and that if we had a forward we might have won a huge upset.

    We all have to guess what would have happened if Freddy had played the whole game and EJ had been removed sooner.

    Like

  • Neal

    very proud of the team, but:

    -still scratiching my head at bradley’s earl tactics and player selection

    -still cringing at the thought of johnson starting for the usa throughout qualifying

    -still wondering what adu has to do for the usa and benfica to get more playing time for either

    -still hoping our defenders can have more composure in the back and not hoof the ball

    however, I am very please with the game overall, and we owe alot to howard, pearce, and some other individual performances

    Like

  • brant

    Howard for MVP, and not a lot of complaints about many of the performances. Even EJ had a few moments.

    Big ups for Pearce, Adu, DMB, Eddie Lewis, Danny Califf, and Cherundolo – for his performance and for loaning us his name for a running gag that probably lasted 4 pages too long.

    Want to see more from EJ (perpetually), lil’ Bradley, and the refs.

    Like

  • aristotle

    Brant:

    I think you’re on to something! The ref sent Mastroeni off to enable Argentina to get to Adu.

    Like

  • eric

    Great job, and it’s great to see the US look better every game for 3 straight.

    That said, we didn’t score in 3 games, and have to commit to getting Adu on the field. He played maybe 90 mins for all 3 combined, and created by far the most danger.

    Like

  • ag nigrin

    Congrats Nats… you guys played with a lot of heart. I am proud of you. As for the ref from El Salvador…he makes Marrufo and Toledo of MLS look great. Mastro, Pearce, Howard, Donovan, Adu were great as were Dolo, Califf.. For me Mastro was MOTM until has was carded for no appaarent reason… It looked at the replay Ivesand it doesn’t look like he said anything to ref except “it wasn’t me.” Mastro should start as one of the D-mids… he has the composure Edu and Bradley don’t have.

    Like

  • aristotle

    I’ve been as big a critic of Adu as anyone for his under performing and over hype in the past, but clearly his time has now arrived and he needs to be a fixture in the lineup from now on.

    Like

  • Tony in Quakeland

    Analysis and or criticism can wait. That was a great, gutty performance.

    Like

  • Nick

    I’ve never really seen Heath Pearce play, he was FANTASTIC tonight. Timmy, what else can be said, he is the MAN! I’ve never been so entertained by watching a 0-0 draw before, what a game!

    Like

  • aristotle

    Yes, let’s not criticize or analyze anything. All comments must be of a positive nature. Did you by any chance purchase “The Secret” recently, Tony?

    Like

  • Hincha Tim

    What I liked: Sasha,Freddy and the other young guns running at the Argies and trying to play them on their own terms. What I didn’t like: EJ not having that kind of guts to take them on, and Landon not finishing. That’s so old school.

    Like

  • Cantona

    This game was more exciting than the 4 Euro games so far. Also I don’t know who sucked worse EJ or the ref.

    Like

  • Scott

    Every time Freddy got a call for a dive the ref repeatedly apologized for the Mastroeni ejection. And Heath Pearce – great game. Great game goes to Sam’s Army as well. The defense managed to hold on for the first twenty minutes, which was very impressive.

    Like

  • Freddie Footballer

    No more EJ! Bring on Altidore. Good games by Califf, Mastro, Edu, Adu, Pearce and of course, MOTM, Timmy. Klejstan looked good when he came on. I’m downgrading Gooch, Bradley (he’s playing out of position, IMO). Mastro showed Bradley how the destroyer position is played tonight. Bradley needs to obviously play a more offensive role. This game reminded me of the Italy game at the World Cup in ’06. Gritty, gutsy performance by the boys. Nice to see this improvement.

    Like

  • Kutama

    Great game tonight, Ref sucked but BB has to realize that Adu has to start, he draws defenders to him leaving others open and he is not afraid to take on opponents one on one with some step over moves, something no other US players dare not do…..Pls leave EJ out of matched like this and hopefully when Altidore is ready to play for the senior team, we’ll drop EJ. But good game overall…This is the same Arg team that beat Mexico (who is ranked above us in the FIFA rankings) 4-1 and couldn’t beat us….hopefully we will be on this and learn from the two defeats we just had….but overall good game, kept me on my toes all match long….for non-soccer people who say that a 0-0 scoreline is boring, they just need to watch this game…

    Like

  • Graeme

    So does anyone care to recognize that the USMNT just drew with the world #1 & kept composure after a horrendous red card on Pablo?

    Well, if it isn’t Bob Bradley & his coaching staff that pulled this off & because we apparently only have 1 world class player on the team, I just don’t get how we pulled this one off because personally this is a satisfactory result considering the circumstances and the opponent.

    As for the comments on who should have started – remember these 3 games were EVALUATION games for the upcoming World Cup qualifying and so the staff want to see how certain players will react under pressure situations. They’re building a squad for the World Cup after all. The lack of football knowledge from people who call themselves fans, especially on this thread, is appalling. No wonder why this sport struggles domestically – the people who know the game get drowned out by the people who think they know the game. It seems many here would rather have a victory over Argentina and get eliminated by Barbados in the 2nd round of qualifying. – G

    Like

  • eric

    I thought both DeMerit and Califf played well, the gap between our 4 best CB’s is smaller than between Pearce/’Dolo and the other outside backs. Very good run of games for our backline.

    Awesome attendance too, hopefully US Soccer realizes people will show for top teams, and stay aggressive scheduling top friendlies.

    Like

  • Kutama

    Ives, why don’t BB take a look at Cam Weaver who is tearing up the Norwegian 2nd league (top goal scorer) instead of sticking with EJ…..he has to have other options forward wise and not stick with EJ, Landon is ok but from the last two matches (where LD was not available due to injury) and Altidore was also not available….bring in Cam Weaver, there is nothing to lose instead we’ll be strengthening the options for the forward role….or bring back Brian McBride

    Like

  • Robby

    Central defense was solid. I like Califf and Onyewu on the inside….

    Have to give it to the midfield. Could have easily allowed the game to be dominated by Mascherano & co., but they played gritty.

    As stated above several times over, EJ needs to be taken out of the rotation. He has failed to earn it, internationally or with his club.

    Like

  • Josh

    Great game !! I thnik it was one of the better games I have seen in a long while for USA!! Damn the ref had to be from El Salvador i’am Salvadorenean but come on I have seen Joel Aguilar do better than today Red card for pablo that’s OUTRAGEOUS!!! imagine if Altidore was there or Cooper,Rogers,and our defense did great I wish we could have played like this for the 2 previous Games!! On to Barbados GO USA !!! And Ives Do you think that for barbados what kind of team will BB call up !!

    Like

  • Keith G.

    That was a great game, if Altidore was in the line up we would have won 1-0. Johnson just doenst have what it takes. Atlidore has the speed, strength, and abilty to hang with Argentina, I think he could have put one in the bak of the net. It was one of the best games I have seen the team play in a long time. The red card, still lost on that one. Great game US, I think if we keep playing like this and keep getting better, we will go far in the World Cup. But to get past what we did in 2002 we are going to need two guys scoring goals up front.

    GO USA!!

    Like

  • Kevin Suir

    So I just got home from watching the game at a friend’s house, and just wanted to add to the comments. Like people have said before, I’m gonna avoid any criticisms for now, and just enjoy the great result. We seem to have grown from every match, which is the point of these big friendlies. So, good job and keep it up, boys. Go USA!!!

    Like

  • kpugs

    I am proud of our boys and the fans. In my opinion we really showed up, the stadium was booming with our chants.

    The unfortunate part? We should have won…and deserved to win.

    Like

  • kd

    the us played very, very well. however, that was one of the sloppier performances that i have seen from argentina. i’m not trying to dismiss the extraordinary performance of our boys, but it is always more satisfying to beat or tie a team when they are truly playing their best. in the end, this is a good result for both teams. it gives the us much more confidence in their abilities and it will motivate argentina to bust their butts in training to face brazil.

    Like

  • sushant

    I only got to see a portion of the game. Anyone know where I can see a replay of the full match?

    Thanks!

    Like

  • really though

    best game in a while. amazing to be there.

    central defenders got burned at least twice, but timmy saved their butts. demerit and califf looked better than i expected.

    mb plays way better alongside mastro. i saw a couple runs off the ball that left him free in the box and showed me why he’s scoring in europe.

    dmb still looks a touch worried on every tackle. he played great though and just needs a bit more time to rehab and get the mental bravery back.

    was great to see sacha looking good. completely miffed that we didn’t get a few minutes of cooper.

    Like

  • Rocco

    Just got home. 8th row center field. Great game. Atmosphere we crazy. When the rain came down, if the US would have scored the place would have exploded.

    Dempsey & Dolo played terrible in my opinion. Dempsey looked his sluggish self again and was going 75% at guys, he needs to sit. Dolo almost gave up 2 in the first half.

    Besides Howard Pearce was the man of the match from my point of view. Him & Bease connect well with each other and attack & defend together nicely.

    Kljestan played well & so did Edu. I think our Olympic team is going to be solid.

    Like

  • boneall

    I havn’t read all you’re comments but I feel a Adu/Donavan/Dempsy/Cooper combo would have cleaned house…Come on BB, use your tools…

    Like

  • Tom

    Tremendous game! Really thought we were going to steal a win in the last 10 minutes with the rain pouring down and the USA crowd on its feet.

    Howard played out of his mind.

    Only thing that ruined the evening was the GODAWFUL Giants Stadium parking setup. Couldn’t get out of the stadium runaround for well over an HOUR. Ridiculous and insulting after being charged $20 to park. What a bunch of morons they have at NJSEA.

    Like

  • DL

    Dempsey and Dolo played poorly?? Dempsey was our biggest attacking threat in the first half, and Dolo was absolutely rock solid (as usual) at right back. What game were you watching?

    Like

  • Mayor Bloomber

    He’s right. Dolo wasn’t that hot. Defensively he was solid but he stayed on the ball too long. EJ and a few others were making runs and he didn’t pick it up.

    Like

  • chupacabra

    I was at the game tonight – really wondering how the ref is going to explain the phantom yellow on Mastro. From what I could tell, it looked like he was influenced by the complaint of the Argentinian player who was lining up the free kick. I saw the Argentinian arguing with the ref and holding up two fingers, then a few moments later the ref ran towards Mastroeni and presented the red. I get the impression that the Argie somehow confused the numbers 25 and 26 and thought that Mastro got a second yellow.

    Whatever happened, that ref should retire out of embarrassment. He couldn’t keep track of the cards he handed out, was incorrectly influenced by a complaint because of pressure from an Argentinian player, and he panicked. It was complete BS, and it definitely screwed up the US’s momentum. It has to be one of the worst calls I’ve ever seen.

    Incredible atmosphere tonight – big up to the US fans who really brought it. The last 15 minutes in the rain were incredible – although again I have to question the ref’s judgment for endangering fans and players with five minutes of added time. You could see lightning bolts flashing in the vicinity – much closer than the normal five miles that leads to MLS game delays.

    Like

  • Will

    Not sure what Bradley was thinking tonight. He’s starts Johnson, which is questionable but i’ll accept it. What is unforgivable was the fact that we did not have 1 forward on the bench. He subs dempsey out and Johnson gets hurts.

    WTF was he thinking?

    Like

  • chupacabra

    Just watched the replay on my Tivo. Now I get the impression that the Argie thought that the ref showed the yellow to Mastro instead of Edu since they were standing near each other when the ref presented the yellow. The ref should have corrected the Arg (maybe said something like “no, the yellow was for the black dude”), but instead he panicked and made a hideous blunder.

    Like

  • Will

    Not sure which game you were watching but Dolo got beat over and over again. The majority of Howard’s great saves were a result of blow marking by dolo.

    Dempsey I thought was solid and should not have been subbed. We needed him on the field WITH Adu! Bradley is just too conservative for me, but I can also see the wisdom in not overloading the field with offensive players, especially against argentina. Having the momentum at that point, I would have liked to see them both out there at the same time.

    Like

  • Street

    I think you have to look at who beat Cherundolo those times. Messi can beat the best in the world, so props go to the entire US D for shutting him down

    Also the traffic out of the stadium was so bad due to the almost 80,000 fans plus the new construction on the stadium and ski slope/indoor game thingy nonsense they are building

    Like

  • kpugs

    P.S. To the pus sy who told us to sit down and refused to identify himself upon request. First, learn something about this sport. Second, dude, go down to the hundreds of fans surrounding me, and in front of me, and tell them to sit down. Or at least don’t cowardly hide behind your Manchester United jersey when we ask you a question. Stupid fellow Americans like you are why I hate admitting I like Manchester United because you know nothing more than the most famous team in the sport.

    Like

  • kpugs

    Will, unfortunately we just got lucky tonight. I still say Bradley didn’t give a crap about the result, he was too busy evaluating is 6th bench player for the big time qualifer we having coming up against Grenada or some other random nation.

    Street, the traffic was bad enough without all the new construction my friend, not going to assume you’re from around here but I have to sympathize with you from tonight. Luckily after hanging out in the lot for 90 minutes or so (post-tailgate?) my bro showed his worth as a true NJ driver. We chilled with our boys in the lot for a while, then he managed to have us home in a grand total of 10 minutes after getting in the car. Having said that, I hear you my friend.

    Like

  • jayrig5

    I posted before the game that I thought Califf would look silly out there, and I was wrong, he looked decent (he actually atoned for his biggest mistake when he hustled back for the tackle on the guy he played on.) Onyewu looked okay, although I really liked Demerit in there with Califf. (This is exemplified by the fact that in the 1st half, with Onyewu in, Argentina had like 6 chances that Howard kept out, and once Demerit came in, things settled down. Obviously Messi was out, and so were others, but Argentina was bringing in guys like Zanetti, it’s not like Eddie Gaven was suiting up.) Really, this is the best the back has looked in a long time, and if you’re looking for a reason, I offer this: no Bocanegra. (Hard to believe that the subtraction of a slow, mistake-prone, foul-happy player with zero field awarenss could help the team, I know. He’s no better than 4th on my depth chart right now.) And I’m also glad we’re past the point where anyone thinks Guzan should be ahead of Howard for 2010. (By the way, I didn’t follow the team as closely as I do now, was it a big controversy when Arena started Keller over Howard in 2006? Because Timmy is a difference maker in goal, like Friedel was in 2002. The only times I’ve seen Keller play like that are in Youtube videos from 1998 games.)

    Like

  • rocky

    i am still amazed that the us got a draw out of this game, what a terrific game. I was def dissapointed that adu didnt start, but to see him in their with beasley, and donovan, we can see that this team with more experience togetheir and altidore up top, we can become a very dangerous team. I dont think theirs any doubt now that freddy has to play from the get gohe is so dangerous with the ball he provides the element of magic that we have never seen before with any player for the usa. With him altidore, donovan on the right, Beasley on the left what a combination of talent up top for us. BB needs to play these players togetheir thru wc qualifying so that they can grow as a unit. To me dempsey could be the odd man out, but could be a very good bench player for us

    Like

  • Tom

    Big Ups to Danny Califf–the only U.S. player to come back out and applaud the fans after the game

    Like

  • Dan

    Tom- i agree the parking was a joke.

    It was amazing sitting on the USA side of the field yesterday. Just the atmosphere was amazing, we were so frekin loud, the argies must of heard us, and im sure our players fed off that too. We almost went into raptures when Gooch hit the post!! SOOOO CLOSE!!! And Tim Howard, well he is my new hero, what a game. Timmy Howard Clap Clap, Clap Clap Clap!!!! Go USA vs Barbados!

    Like

  • brett

    Kpugs- why would he care about a result of a meaningless friendly.??? its obvious that our primary goal is to prepare for the WCQ’ers and nothing else….

    what’s more impt: beating arg. or getting into the WC?? obviously id rather try new combos and faces on a meaningless game then try it on a game that can change the next 2 yrs…

    ————————–x———–

    Graeme- i agree with you on the fact that this 3 game stint was an evaluation process and nothing more… and what have we found out?? 4 major things….

    1) Pearce has solidified a starting position at left back..

    2) we need adu in the starting XI

    3) we need Donovan in the starting XI (despite how much i critisize him)

    4) we need a better forward(s) option…

    for all the EJ haters out there (myself included)…. as a coach, when you are playing some of the top teams in the world, who do you go with?? a forward with intl’ exp (EJ), or a forward who is a promising prospect (Cooper)?? when you play teams like Argentina you need people with experience… in that sitauation (if i was BB) i would have started EJ, but subbed him off at the 60th marker and put Cooper on… if anything this would have opened the game and given us a view into Cooper’s outlook with the Nats… i really wanted him to get some time…

    saying that, people i was impressed with.. Howard, Pearce, DMB, LD and Kljestan…. now saying that, that doesnt mean others didnt play well, those are just some that stood out…

    watching MB make a few bad decisions i came to realize the problem doesnt solely lie with MB… i felt he played well and he busts his ass to get to an opening to receive a pass, but alot of the time after he received it, he had no outlets… majority of his fouled passes were due to the fact that noone was opening up for him and he was forced to attempt threading the needle… alot of the critism he receives on here is no different then the critism i tend to get LD… LD made just as many mistakes last night, but due to alot of people hugging his nuts, they tend to overlook that… same can be said for just about anyone (excluding howard)

    i think howard said it best at the end of the game when he said if the US can incorporate these types of games into the WCQ then we should do just fine…

    on a side note, i hope Jozy is fine by sunday… we need an attacking force…

    Like

  • brett

    i forgot to mention…

    MY MOTM GOES TO: the US fans that represented the red, white, and blue

    i was pleasently surprised how many US supporters attended… it wasnt long ago when i was up in chicago watching the US play brazil… the ratio was 5 to 1 in favor of brazil, and it saddened me😥

    good work east coast for showing our team love

    Like

  • inkedAG

    I was at the game and had a great time. I was in 102 and from my vantage point, Heath Pearce, Dan Califf, Freddy Adu, Landon Donovan and of course Tim Howard were excellent.

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  • Ddanford

    Brett,

    In EJ’s defense, I haven’t seen the USMNT creating a lot of goal scoring chances lately. Granted EJ could have done better with what chances he’s had but there is no Henry or Drogba in the US player pool.

    Sampson and Arena had a smaller player pool. The same basic core group played together a lot and understood each other very well. Our aerial threat on set pieces, for example, used to be much greater.

    In contrast, Bradley’s reign has featured a much larger pool of players. This speaks to growth in our game and is a good thing but it also means that there are times when it must seem like a fire drill to the players on the field. In Cooper’s case he really hasn’t even been available for camp all that much so to throw him in there with the likes of Argentina seems to be asking a bit much. Remember Eddie Gaven? I’ve been wondering why Bradley keeps playing certain players and perhaps it’s because he’s trying to develop some kind of team “chemistry”. Maybe he can get the team to stop treating the ball like it’s made out of plutonium.

    While I am as frustrated with EJ as everyone else, it might be worth noting since he’s moved to Fulham his passing, movement and runs off the ball seem to be better. In 2002 there were guys like Reyna,JOB, Sanneh, Lewis and Donovan to provide a telling pass to a guy like EJ. The younger Josh Wolff had many of the same characteristics that EJ has now and he was quite useful to the 2002 team. There was a time, young man, when the USMNT could actually string a series of passes together.

    Lewis hasn’t been playing much with EJ( he has frequently played left back) and Donovan and Dempsey have been pushed more up front. This leaves Adu, Feilhaber and and Mapp out of the current pool as likely providers. Feilhaber and Mapp seem to have played their way out of the pool for now and Adu has linked up with EJ very infrequently (unlike Altidore who seems to always have Adu with him while with the US). EJ has speed and physical presence. Perhaps if our strikers(EJ or whoever)can get hooked up with Adu and Feilhaber and if DMB and Donovan can reform their beep,beep partnership, the USMNT will start scoring a little more regularly

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