U.S. Men's National Team

SBI USMNT Man of the Match: Chris Wondolowski


Prior to Friday’s U.S. Men’s National Team friendly, Jurgen Klinsmann publicly defended his continued inclusion of Chris Wondolowski, calling the forward a “damn good player”. In Friday’s clash with Cuba, Wondolowski surely did his part to justify Klinsmann’s claims.

The San Jose Earthquakes forward provided a goal and an assist in Friday’s match at  Estadio Pedro Marrero in Havana, leading the U.S. to a 2-0 victory against Cuba. Wondolowski’s performance saw him score his 11th international goal while locking up SBI USMNT Man of the Match honors.

Following a lackluster first half from both sides, Wondolowski entered the fray at halftime before turning the tide 17 minutes later. Following a Julian Green shot, the forward pounced on a loose ball and fired the opening goal into a wide-open net. Several minutes later, Wondolowski set up Green to seal the game, locking up a 2-0 win while helping the U.S. escape Havana with a positive result.

Wondolowski narrowly beat out Green for Man of the Match Honors, as the Bayern Munich forward was a consistent presence for the U.S. throughout Friday’s match.

What did you think of Wondolowski’s performance? Which player stood out to you as Man of the Match from Friday’s USMNT win?

Share your thoughts below.

  • UclaBruinGreat

    Only thing I can take away from this game is Chandler looked better than Yedlin, and Green looked better than Pulisic. Atleast for this one game.

    This is what i mean about how comparing players that play in different teams/leagues and are in different situations can be fools gold sometimes. Everyone assumes Pulisic is now better than Green because of club team play, and maybe he is, but today on the same field and at the same time it didn’t look like it.


    • AKinDC

      As for Pulisic, it makes sense that someone who relies on technical skill would be hurt the most by the horrid field.


    • Lost in Space

      Hopefully the game against New Zealand will provide more insight to the ability level of our players. The game today was greatly hindered by the horrid field conditions. On a decent field we can at least see how players work together (passing, movement, interchange, etc….). Today was all about hoofing the ball and hoping for rebounds.

      Liked by 1 person

  • Lost in Space

    This is what I was afraid of when Wondo entered the game. Media and others will think that this justifies keeping this average player around going forward. Yes Wondo scored a goal….one in which Morris was just as ready to finish, and assisted in another. However it doesn’t change the fact that Wondo isn’t a real option when we play good teams.


    • troy2

      Exactly. Up against poor to mediocre teams Wondo is a great option. But against a world-class team (Belgium, Argentina, etc.) he chokes in the worst way…missing sitters, aggressive over-fouling.


  • Jackson

    Wondo still sucks. He scored against a minnow again. The field was abysmal and didn’t allow a free flowing passing style. We just pinged long balls forward, and hoped something to break out way. Wondo just happened to be in the right place at the right time. He can’t score when it matters against quality competition. He’s 33, will be 35 in Russia. Locker room, work rate, yadda, who cares. He’s not one of our best 23, and should not be in the team.

    Green was our best player by far.


    • swy19

      This is it. The US will qualify for the World Cup, and Wondo will not be on the team. If they don’t qualify, it will be for reasons for greater than “Wondo wasn’t here to score against Martinique”.

      The Beckerman/Wondo stopgap needs to…well, stop. If this guy is called in for the Mexico game, I’ll be furious, but think he might be.

      Love how everyone brings up the Belgium game like it’s a one off atrocious performance. Did nobody catch the Argentina Copa semi?


  • Mike R

    Yea, he’s a damn good player against minnows in friendlies…but utter crap against real teams. I hope he doesn’t use this goal to justify calling him up and playing in real qualifying matches. I wake up in a cold sweat after having nightmares of Wondolowski in the starting lineup against Mexico.


  • Lost in Space

    Green scored a goal and had an assist. Same as Wondo. Difference between the two is that Green was active and dangerous for 90 minutes while Wondo was a second half sub who had 2 good plays.

    Green should have been Man of the Match.


  • Gary Page

    Green showed that he isn’t that far away from being a consistently good performer, perhaps. Given the opposition and the conditions, it’s difficult to make any firm conclusions. One thing though, is that Green showed more effort than any other US player I think, He looked like he was determined to make a difference; something lacking from most of the others.

    Liked by 1 person

  • bizzy

    “Why is he on the team they said”
    “He is a waste of space they said”

    lol…….let ’em know Wondo….let ’em know


      • bizzy

        lol….I’m here Johnnyrazor….yeah In an all around poor performance he did well


    • Helium-3

      This is Cuba, one of the weakest teams in CONCACAF, whom the Cosmos beat 4-1 last year in a friendly. Just proves scoring against them is not a big deal. Nobody doubts Wondo scoring against these minnows, let’s see if he gets on the field against Mexico and makes a difference.


      • bizzy

        “This is Cuba, one of the weakest teams in CONCACAF, whom the Cosmos beat 4-1 last year in a friendly. Just proves scoring against them is not a big deal”….hhmmmm

        “one of the weakest teams in CONCACAF”,…..Yet our TOP strikers couldn’t score, we didn’t have 200 shots on goals and we played so poorly and had to be saved by Wondolowski (So your point is….????)

        “whom the Cosmos beat 4-1 last year in a friendly”….and yet the USMNT because of Wondo was able to score only 2 goals (Don’t know what that’s about…….)

        “Just proves scoring against them is not a big deal”………yet Wood, Altidore, Pullisic, Kljestan, Green, Bradley didn’t each have 5 goals a piece (if it was easy what gives…..???)

        Certain pieces fit in certain puzzles. How about we just say “good job Wondo, thank you for saving our a$$….and that game was a good day for you”…..and leave it at that


  • El Comandante

    The sob Antigoal did not score, yet people here pick on Wondo. Amazing. One of our greater goal scorers ever in our pathetic league, but hey it is our league and he shines in it. Wondo deserves every call up he get by the great strategist Klinsmann. Green did not have an assist, some people here still don’t know crappola about soccer. Wondo MAN OF THE MATCH. Thank you Wondo for saving us from a humiliating draw against a fourth rate team.


  • Fast Right Leg

    Julian Green deserves it more. I was impressed by how well he played on that awful pitch.


  • BW

    The best part of the match was Ian Darke losing his keys because he left his car run in the carpark for 3 hours.


  • jb

    Congrats to Wondo, he was a class above our other players in this match. For my part, I hope Wondo keeps getting the call. He is perfect as a late-game sub if we need a goal, or if we just need someone to run around and pester the opposing defense with fresh legs.

    Really though, this match was a total waste for our 1st team. I cringed every time one of our players went down. Next time we use a friendly for a political goodwill statement, lets bring the u23 team or 3rd stringers and leave our top players with their clubs.


  • Andy

    I think that Wondo keeps getting called up because of his work ethic during training. He’s constantly been OVER achieving — not many gave him a chance of even being a starter in MLS. He’s there to provide a contrast to the young players who may come into camp feeling they are entitled and above having to work hard Chris will never be a super star… but he’s a true pro that will do anything JK asks of him.


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