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U.S. Men's National Team

USMNT vs. Guatemala: SBI Live Match Commentary

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By IVES GALARCEP

The U.S. Men’s National Team will play its lone tune-up match before the CONCACAF Gold Cup tonight in San Diego with a friendly against Guatemala (11pm, NBC Sports).

The Americans are fielding a Gold Cup squad featuring some new faces, and some old ones, but is also a team without most of the full senior team’s top stars. Landon Donovan makes his return to the national team fold tonight, as does Oguchi Onyewu, as both look to re-assert their places in the U.S. National Team pecking order.

They face a familiar foe in Guatemala that will look to pose a good test, and get their own  act together as they look ahead to qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.

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

Enjoy the action (Tonight’s SBI Live Match Commentary is after the jump):

182 comments
  • SanFran415

    There we go.

    There’s the Landon we remember. Smart runs. Smart looks.

    Answered the call.

    Like

  • Puckhead

    Second half squad with the 5 subs is such a better team than the first half. Guatemala is tired, but this group is playing the ball better, quicker, and with more purpose. Notice who was gone from midfield to facilitate forward movement. Get Beckerman out, and all of a sudden you have offense.

    Like

  • Colin

    Fun to see Holden and Donovan playing so well. Need to get both back into the first team fold following the gold cup.

    Like

  • EspinDOHla

    Stu, Bedoya, Mix, Shea coming in….what a difference! Starting lineup please!!!

    Like

    • Francois

      No on Shea, he hasn’t looked very good outside of his cross that will bruin missed on the back post

      Like

      • Colin

        He looks such a threat, big, fast, and generally powerful, but his final ball and decision making are still lacking. I hope he can refine them at stoke this year, because if he is running on all cylinders I think he can really help our world cup run either as a starter or off the bench.

        Like

      • EspinDOHla

        Agree with Colin. He still has some aspects to work on but he is a much better option at LW than Castillo.

        Like

      • Michael

        Ditto… Brek can get down the sideline with pace. If he can just improve his final ball he could provide a dangerous threat come 2014

        Like

  • Francois

    Will Bruin sucks..shouldn’t be anywhere near this team. Two golden chances wasted already.

    Like

  • SanFran415

    Stuart Holden is playing himself directly onto the WCQ squad for Columbus.

    Wow. Dude looks like he was never gone.

    Can he replicate this against better opposition? He’s earning the chance to give it a look.

    Like

      • SanFran415

        I swear I’m back in time right now.

        Time Warp baby!

        Like

    • Joe A.

      He came off the bench for a few minutes last qualifier. This should only increase his playing time with the A team.

      Like

    • Colin

      So happy to see him playing, besides his bad hair-due i have always been a huge fan.

      Like

    • Ben

      Stu is special, which makes it all the more sad when you consider his last two years.

      Like

    • chris_thebassplayer

      Yeah, Jones is probably feeling a little queasy right now. Stu put on a clinic…outstanding stuff…love watching the LD/Stu combo play.

      Like

  • ec

    Hard to believe Shea is still just 23. Looks menacing, but keeps trying to play the hero ball and loses it.

    Like

    • Colin

      My thoughts exactly. He is still a bit raw, but if he can improve his decision making and final ball he is going to be a force.

      Like

  • Thebumswillalwayslose

    Well, when Clarence Goodson is bossing the penalty area, you can pretty much call it a night here Guatemala. Good lord what a thrashing in the 2nd half.

    Like

  • beachbum

    so the difference is the change from 4231 to a 442 with LD up top and Corona out wide, then everything began to change,about 30 minute mark. then 2nd half change of central midfielders truly revealed the issues first half, which were forced balls forward into a packed D by the midfield instead of patience forward but quickness laterally across the field and then up the flanks.

    there is some very entertaining commentary above

    cheers!

    Like

    • SanFran415

      I keep seeing this, but the game changed when Gomez scored and Guatemala had to come out of their shell.

      And Donovan has been playing wide–as we saw with his build up receiving the ball deep and bringing it up the flank.

      Like

      • beachbum

        it’s what happened my friend…and it’s been happening already in other games starting with the Germany game so to me it’s old news

        Holden and Donovan the class of the field tonight with other strong showings too, Diskerud and Herc come to mind

        Like

    • Tony in Quakeland

      Agree. Game change when we want to a 4-4-2 with Donovan up top. Space opend and the defense felt pressured the rest of the night.

      The original possession oriented approach did very little

      Like

    • Bac

      Yup, and having Stu & Mixx together being able to play box to box really opened that up.. even though GT was getting tired, no matter… those 2 guys looked like they’ve been playing together for a while

      Like

    • chris_thebassplayer

      I agree, once we committed another player higher up it opened things up. I was hoping we would have started 4-4-2, instead of 4-2-3-1. This is going to be a fun team to watch…the competition for playing time is really going to raise the overall level of play.

      Like

  • ec

    Nice from Shea on the goal, a bit behind the runners in the middle but they had a play on it. But better decisions from him.

    Like

  • Francois

    Stu is the man. What a ball to spring Brek down the wing for the last goal. So impressed with his play tonight. Gonna make Klinsi’s job even tougher if he keeps playing like this. Holden, Jones, and Cameron all competing for the spot next to MB. That is a ridiculous amount of talent in the center of midfield.

    Like

    • chris_thebassplayer

      Yep, I hope to see Cameron behind MB and Stu…that would be fantastic chemistry.

      Like

      • Tony in Quakeland

        Mostly. As long as Shea is asked to beat the guy in front of him, he’s a terror. Got better with his crosses as the game went on. Thing he helped himself, but not as much as the other three

        Like

  • SanFran415

    This was a game out of control, so its a big grain of salt, but Stuart Holden–if he can replicate his past form–is our best center midfielder.

    He and Bradley together with Jones behind them and Donovan and Johnson and Jozy?

    Like

  • Dennis

    I don’t think we learned much from this game. Guatemala did not do enough to test the US defense and were unable to defend what should have been fairly routine runs down the side or the resulting crosses.

    No one for the US really did that well, but then Guatemala did not ask much of them.

    Like

    • Tony in Quakeland

      Yes, because we always score 6 against teams we’re supposed to beat… right…

      Like

    • Ben

      Umm, we learned that Holden’s knee is alright, which is probably the most important thing you could learn.

      Like

  • Ben

    How tragic is it that Holden missed the last year and a hlaf of games from Bolton? There is no way he is a Championship player; I hope he proves he is healthy and they sell him to the EPL in Jan.

    Like

    • Joe Dirt

      Was thinking almost the same watching the second half except if I’m an EPL manager who needs a quality center mid and remembers Stu’s best year with Bolton when he was POY, and I can buy him for probably less than 2mm why not o it right now if he continues this form thru rest of Gold Cup. He could get looks this window.

      Like

  • 2pac shakur

    As good as we looked, and we looked damn good, Guatemala was trash. But as good team thats what were supposed to do

    Like

  • MLS_Soccer_Talker

    I liked Breks aggressiveness going forward. Needs more polishing looks rusty tho. Stu looks good..I still dont care 4 Wondo rather see jac mac.

    Like

  • 2pac shakur

    Side note, Brek Shea played like a guy who hasn’t played in a about a year. Of anyone on this team he needs this gold cup just to get un rusty.

    Like

  • Dennis

    Wondo got his goal and has that monkey off his back. His stretching return pass to Holden setup the cross for Donavon’s goal.

    Like

    • 2pac shakur

      Yeah, new coach. He has gotta go and earn impress his new coach. It’s gon be an uphill battle but I think he can do it

      Like

      • Ben

        Ugh, Mark Hughes, I do forget that. Maybe you’re right.

        Like

    • Ben

      I’m not normally a fan of keeping players in his position out of preseason, but to get some real games, why not keep him? Even if Stoke wants him back before the final.

      Like

      • 2pac shakur

        @ Ben. I think me and you are on the same page, but if he doesn’t play during the season and its a result of coming in to camp late or worse picking up a knock at the gold cup he can kiss the World Cup goodbye.

        Like

      • Ben

        Yeah, I meant even if they demand him back in a couple of cweeks, before the final, so be it; keep him as long as we can.

        Like

  • FRANK FROM SF

    First of all I only saw the second half,and yes its Guatemala, but reading some your early comments are kind of comical. Players that barely play together and have only had a couple of days practice are suppose to play like clockwork from the 1st minute?!?

    We beat them 6-0……6-0.

    Some fans will never be happy unless its fifa13 style and we always win 10-0 against lesser teams…haha.

    Give it a bit of time folks……6 – 0…….a few of you need to call it a night, before you make bigger fools of yourselves on these comment boards.

    Like

    • John

      I think some will argue that Holden, Diskerud and Shea coming into the game at half really changed things. As soon as they touched it they were looking to move it forward while Beckerman played far to many passes backwards. Others will argue after the first goal, Guatemala had to press forward making it much easier to create chances. Either way the US were far more impressive in the second half.

      Like

    • Bobb

      It wasn’t a question of “give it time”, it was all about 1. changes in the formation (4-2-3-1 to 4-4-2), 2. movement of players (Corona outside, Donovan as second forward), and 3. player changes (bringing in Holden, Diskerud, Shea).

      Like

  • elliott

    no matter what happens going forward, JK has built depth. It may be average depth, but he has choices on skillsets and he can no focus on chemistry. Lets face it folks, we still lack TOP FLIGHT skills in a number of positions. But the program is progressing. Thats all i want to see. I prefer seeing an A B and C side with some semblance of ability than an overworked stale “A” side

    Like

    • 2pac shakur

      I think all of us can end the debate, Jk can coach. With that said its gold cup title or bust.

      Like

      • Ben

        Well I’m still not entire sold he is a better tactician than Bob, but he is definitely more willing to be exposed, which gives the players confidence I think.

        Like

  • Jason

    I like NBC’s proudction style versus ESPN…but then ESPN have Lallas and Twillman (sp) so, I guess that isn’t saying much.

    Like

    • Ben

      Whatever other sports on ESPN I can’t stand, I actually enjoyed the Bob Ley lead Confed Cup.

      Like

      • Jason

        For sure. Bob was the biggest positive…other then Roberto, who realy impressed me last WC for ESPN…its a very articliate (sp…lol) and inteligent man.

        Like

      • 2pac shakur

        Espn works when the Americans aren’t involved in the production, I really hate to say it but its true. With that said Bob Ley deserves an Emmy everytime he opens his mouth

        Like

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