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U.S. Men's National Team

USMNT vs. Cuba: SBI Live Match Commentary

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By IVES GALARCEP

A place in the knockout rounds of the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup awaits for the U.S. Men’s National Team if the Americans can beat Cuba, as expected, when the sides clash at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah today (3pm, FOX).

The Americans come in riding high after their second straight blowout win, a 6-1 thrashing of Belize in their Group C opener. They face a Cuba squad that looked terrible in a 3-0 opening loss to Costa Rica.

Jurgen Klinsmann is expected to make several changes to the squad that beat Belize, with Oguchi Onyewu and Herculez Gomez among the players set to step into the starting lineup.

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

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

104 comments
    • markwriter

      No, but there’s a complaint of cigar smoke coming from their locker room…

      Like

  • David M

    I don’t like this lineup much at all. Certainly should be good enough to beat Cuba, but I expect a very mediocre performance.

    Like

    • Tom

      You should articulate what you don’t like rather than just say “Bah humbug, it’s no good”.
      I think it’s a great line up. The defense doesn’t inspire a ton of confidence (would rather see Cameron and Beasley but understand the rotation of players) so it makes even more sense to include Beckerman in his home stadium…and the rest of the midfield/forwards are exactly what I would have chosen. Give Shea a chance against a weaker opponent to try going 90 and running at a bunker defense. And Wowdowowski (sp?) can come in off the bench to give Landon a break if need be, or to have him slide out to the wing for Shea/Corona.

      Like

  • biff

    Is this for real, Gooch named captain. If yes, absolutely ridiculous of Klinsmann not to name either Herc or Donovan as captain. Other than that, looking forward to seeing this line-up in action.

    Like

    • Old School

      There’s no doubt Donovan increases the quality on the pitch but I don’t know why people continue to assume that being the best player, means you’re the best leader.

      They are not one in the same and as big a fan as I am of Donovan, I’ve never considered him to be a default captain.

      Like

      • Old School

        ^ ..and seriously, what the hell could have been filtered to make that comment “awaiting for moderation”.

        This is ridiculous.

        Like

      • EspinDOHla

        I found this out after many frustrating posts as well…

        You wrote the word “@ssume” in your post. It filters any word that has an “a” followed by “ss”. So the word “@ssume” gets moderation. Pretty bad for a soccer website when words like p@ss and @ssist are quite common vocabulary here.

        Like

      • Alex C

        Also you have to write Fa&undez instead of using a “g” for the New England player.

        Like

      • Alex C

        There are however some positive aspects to this filtering. I prefer the conversation on this site compared to many others that do not seem to filter out anything.

        Like

    • SanFran415

      It’s ridiculous that a long-time veteran center back who has captained the team before and played in 2 different finals for this same tournament to get the captain’s armband over a player that is just off a self-imposed sabbatical and a guy with 22 caps?

      Like

      • EspinDOHla

        A veteran that has hardly seen the pitch at all in the past year+

        Like

      • SanFran415

        Where does it say consistent starting with your club team is a pre-requisite for being a leader for your national team?

        Like

      • EspinDOHla

        Nowhere but it’s odd that someone who hasn’t been in the USMNT picture for so long is captain over others, like Beckerman, who have been there more and have captained the team.

        Like

      • David M

        I guess a self-imposed sabbatical is the most heinous crime known to man.

        Like

      • SanFran415

        Your words, not mine.

        It’s certainly not the actions of someone who sees themselves as a team leader and model for teammates.

        Beyond that is irrelevant to this discussion.

        Like

      • Tckc

        +100. Leaders don’t miss essential qualifiers to sit on the beach. No one takes Donovan’s accomplishments or value to the team from him be us integral moving forward and had been a huge part of the development of mainstream appreciation for he game in the US. I just don’t think he is the one the troops look towards for a rallying cry or inspirational words. He’s a great player but maybe that’s where it ends. And that is totally ok. Lots of great players don’t wear the armband. Lets get over it an be happy for Gooch. Another solid player who would be there for his team whenever they call

        Like

      • biff

        What name do you usually post under on SBU, Tckc? Or are you one of this timid souls who signs on with a new name for every thread? By the way, are you also Tbag?

        Like

      • M

        Not as bad as quitting during an actual game, but definitely one of the worse.

        Like

    • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

      Calm down. Maybe he just wants to know if it’ll inspire some confidence elevate his game.

      I doubt the players are torn apart because Gooch is wearing the armband

      Like

  • EspinDOHla

    Man, even Beckerman should be the captain over Gooch! He’s been around more in the JK era and he has previously been the captain.

    But like biff said, should be Herc or Donovan…

    Like

    • SanFran415

      It has nothing to do with “being around” or what have you–and that’s ignoring the fact that Onyewu was out of the picture because he was seriously injured and then very out of form.

      He’s always been a leader in the locker room. That’s well documented. He’s been in these games before and captained this team before.

      We have no idea what happens in the locker rooms, but what is said is very important and Onyewu, Beasley and Beckerman have all been referred to as the team leaders.

      Any one of them can be captain.

      Like

    • Roy

      Agree. Beckerman is a better choice than Gooch. What message is it sending to players who have contributed during the Klinsy era?

      Like

      • EspinDOHla

        ^exactly. It sucks Gooch got hurt. I love the guy but he hasn’t been around (and I guess we agree to disagree about “being there” being somewhat important, SF415) and contributed during JK’s era.

        Like

    • biff

      Absolutely right, My post above written in the heat of action, forgot about Beckerman. And no one can deny that Herc has given his soul for this team the past year and that is a true slap in the face from Klinsmann to be passed over for Gooch, who I like and respect a lot, but who I don’t think was first in line to be named caption for this game.

      Like

  • USAmr

    Is Fox coverage frozen for anyone else?
    Maybe it’s my cable provider, but every other channel works.

    Like

  • AMPhibian

    shea needs to show me something today, and i’m talking strictly for the gold cup. i haven’t rated him very high at all these last two games, and so far, would rank his form last among our wing players on this squad. i still think he has massive amounts of potential, and brings things to our side no other player in the pool does, but his crosses are still wildly inconsistent, and his touch has been a bit clumsy.

    Like

    • RB

      Whew: Univision IS carrying it (just in their main network, I guess). So there is an alternative available if he’s the play-by-play man today.

      Like

    • David M

      Is Gus Johnson a close friend with Onyewu? It’s a bit odd to hear him calling Onyewu Gooch all the time. And didn’t he also say that Gooch was on loan from Malibu?

      Like

    • petedx

      Yeah, kinda makes it seem stupid for all the people hating on Portland for only having 19k or whatever.

      Like

      • RB

        Well I wasn’t one of those (just FTR), but this seems rather pathetic.

        And hearing that it’s because of the rain is just going to make it sound moreso.

        Like

    • RB

      Looks like it may have filled in at least a bit now. Hoping there were just a lot of people up on the concourse hiding out from the rain until the kick-off or something.

      Like

    • Chodilicus

      When it rains at the RIOT a lot of people watch from the concourse. There was about 18k there in a stadium that fits 20k. So it was almost all full and by the second half you could see it almost all filled in.

      Like

  • petedx

    So is Dr Joe involved in this broadcast? If so it’s gotta be time to implement the Dr Joe drinking game.

    Like

  • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

    For the love of god, I’ve been saying this,for over a yr now. Shea isn’t good enough for the USMNT!

    No more! Please! Sub him at the half.

    Ask Dr. Joe, he’ll tell ya’

    Like

    • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

      Can’t take players on 1v1. Can’t cross consistently, and his touch is often too heavy.

      Should’ve been sold as a teenager ans converted to a LB

      Like

      • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

        Our whole left attack has been completely negated because Brek sucks ass

        Like

      • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

        Our whole left attack has been completely negated because Brek is horrible.

        Like

  • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

    No. 5 for Cuba, Jorge Luís Clavelo, is a pretty good player and I think he could make an MLS team.

    Although, he’s probably captain because he’s not gonna defect. Too bad

    Like

  • Francois

    For all the times I “hate” on beckerman, he has been very good in the first 20 minutes. Probably our best player so far to be honest. Shea looks horrible.

    Like

    • Chodilicus

      Beckerman was the best player in this game, hands down. His service was very good including an assist and the potential for others. And almost every chance in the second half started with Beckerman winning the ball first and starting the attack. He showed his full arsenal today of what makes him by far the best #6 that the USMNT has.

      What separates Beckerman from so many other destroyers is his skill in passing. He always plays balls with the perfect spin and weight to them. There are times when he shows the skill of a good #10. However, his positioning and ability to win the ball are still by far his best attributes.

      Beckerman completely dominated this game for the USMNT and setup everything. I think so much of it goes unnoticed as the #6 position is not a glamorous one. I have said it before, but Jones is not nearly the skilled passer that Beckerman is and his positioning is clearly inferior. I like the USMNT much more with a true #6 and I think the only good option there outside of Beckerman for the WC is Diskerud.

      Like

      • Hunter

        Please tell me this comment was a joke, Beckerman might have had a good game, but the best number 6 the USA has? PLEASSSSEEE. you seem to have forgotten about general bradley completely and I dont think ive ever seen a more blasphemous statement than this “Jones is not nearly the skilled passer that Beckerman is and his positioning is clearly inferior.” ARE YOU SERIOUS??? Jones hits long balls across the field with his eyes closed and actuallly looks up when he’s passing while beckerman just runs around making 10 yrd sideways and back-passes. Oh and diskerud is a box-to-box/ attacking mid, definately not a #6

        Like

  • Andrew

    gus is a lot better than people give him credit for. he starts discussions that are useful to beginner fans. the problem is, wynalda is absolutely horrible.

    Like

    • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

      He’s doing his job. He realizes this on fox and not fox soccer

      Like

  • deepvalue

    Wow, Brek has shown some things in the past, but his touches and crosses today have not been close. He looks frustrated. Cuba is just parked on defense.

    Like

    • John

      I think that’s the problem. The times he has looked good is when we are the ones parked on defense like against Mexico. He didn’t look good today but I don’t think that means there aren’t situations when his speed and aggressiveness wouldn’t be useful.

      Like

  • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

    Wow, see what happens when Shea plays. Things go to s**t

    Like

      • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

        Brek was too busy doing nothing upfield when he should’ve been tracking back to help out.

        Like

  • Francois

    Horrible defending from Castillo and terrible marking by Gooch. What are we doing out there.

    Like

  • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

    Castillo is completely by passing Shea now because all the guy does is back pass

    Like

  • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

    Beas, Castillo and Fabian Johnson on our left side for the WC. All have pretty good chemistry with each other

    Like

    • Kingly Alexander - Sankt Pauli!

      Lol

      “Mix diskerud and wondowlowski warming up…”

      U called it

      Like

  • Broward

    First, this is the worst I have ever seen Shea play. He needs to be subbed now. Second, Beckerman is playing better but why is Holden playing deeper then he is? Third…Castillo….you are freaking slow. If your guy is faster, take the inside and push him wide…don’t offer him, well, the goal. Fourth, Corona has a good touch but man is he ssssslllllloooooowwww!

    Like

  • Francois

    Cuban player with a dirty tackle to end the half. How is that not a booking?

    Like

  • Broward

    On a side note…how is there not one good ref in this region. Seriously, we don’t have a single ref that isn’t even moderately above average.

    Like

    • RB

      Thanks. Was going to watch that game after this one but now I guess I can skip 120 mins of action. :-

      Like

      • Broward

        Twellman: “I hate to end a WC with PK’s but I don’t think anyone was ever going to score in this one.” Hope I didn’t spoil your current event!

        Like

      • RB

        Nope, you just spoiled the U20 WC Final for me by posting about it during this completely unrelated current event. So as I said, thanks.

        Like

    • petedx

      True, but I think he would still be a better option than Shea at this point.

      Like

      • Broward

        Really good players don’t always translate into commentators. Just like with ESPN…where an English accent doesn’t always translate into being a great commentator.
        And Cobi was really good and really fast…he wasn’t a legend.

        Like

  • Ricardo

    Not looking great but according to Paul Gardner we have nothing to worry about.
    We have Tab Ramos! The guy who gets praised for finishing 22nd out of 24.
    WTF?

    Like

  • Francois

    Window knows how to score. I think he’s gotta be ahead of Herc on the depth chart.

    Like

  • DL

    Castillo has gotta be one of the most one-footed players I’ve ever seen at this level. Hard to watch.

    Like

  • Ricardo

    You can pull it guys
    I see that you pulled the other comment from Old School

    Not a problem

    Like

  • M

    It’s hard to get read on any of this considering how bad the last three teams we have played have been.

    Like

  • biff

    Shea’s un-performance today simply has got to close the book on him for the rest of the Gold Cup. That was one of the worst USMNT performances in a long, long time. Not only does he not deserve to start, he should not even be on the bench and he should not have been called up in the first place. Shea needs to go back to his club and start working harder to try to lift his game. Not fair to other guys who are more deserving of a spot to have him on the USMNT roster at this time.

    Like

    • Casey

      I remember his first cap and that one was bad. This way worse. He did nothing to contribute on both sides of the ball. He has a lot of maturing to do.

      Like

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