U.S. Men's National Team

SBI USMNT Man of the Match: Julian Green


Photo by Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports

Photo by Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports

After going several years between goals one and two, Julian Green didn’t wait long to net his third international goal.

The U.S. Men’s National Team winger followed up Friday’s goalscoring performance with another finish on Tuesday, firing his side’s lone goal in a 1-1 draw with New Zealand. Green’s goal, as well as his overall attacking play, earned the 21-year-old honors as SBI USMNT Man of the Match.

Green’s big moment came in the 27th minute as the U.S. battled back from a shaky start. After receiving the ball near midfield, Green dribbled straight at a tentative New Zealand defender before cutting inside onto his right foot. The ensuing shot fooled goalkeeper Stefan Marinovic, who was left rooted to his spot as Green’s effort slipped just inside the near post. In addition to being one of the more lively options throughout his 72 minutes, Green also showed a commitment to defending, making a pair of tackles and an interception in his own half.

The winger’s performance was his second straight standout effort, earning Green honors over Sacha Kljestan, Michael Bradley and Matt Besler.

What did you think of Green’s performance? Which player stood out to you on Tuesday?

Share your thoughts below.

  • El Comandante

    Our problems have been finally solved. Actually we did not win this match in part because Wondo did not play, and I ain’t kidding. Moreover, Miguel Ibarra is desperately needed for the Mexico match as he understands their game philosophy.


  • PJS090

    Gooch needs lots more game time. Very exciting young player. Green, Pulisic, Gooch, Wood, Morris, Miazga, CCV, Yedlin. Future is looking good.


  • Gary Page

    I think Green gets MOTM by default because nobody else stood out. Still, it was a good shot that produced the goal. He seemed to put a lot of power into it so that even if the GK had moved on it he might not have kept it out. He does look promising, but I thought New Zealand played much better as a team.


  • DanTheNoleFan

    Green was without a doubt the best player in the field in a USMNT jersey. Overall it was about what you would expect from a large portion of B squad players. The chemistry wasn’t there. They were ball watching for large periods of time which cost them a goal. Altidore looked lost as a lone striker, maybe we can finally put this idea to bed. Gooch was a welcomed revelation on the wing due to his impeccable first touch. Even if Bedoya is healthy going into Mexico, i think Klinsmann has some tough decisions to make. Sure, Ale has grit and a great motor but he cannot produce the class that those two can on the wings. If you look at our success against Mexico, we were at our best when we had the pace of Donovan and Beasley stretching out the field and providing outlets for central players. I think a tandem of Pulisic and Green on the wings could cause some trouble because not only do they have pace but they are young, hungry, technically gifted, love running at defenders and are used to playing in fast paced environments.


  • Joe Dirt

    I think you’ll one of these two lineups for Mex:

    Green Pulisic

    Kljestan Bedoya

    FJ Brooks Cameron Yedlin

    (Wood over Altidore since Jozy seems not to fit well in a 4-3-3 without a withdrawn striker. Bradley playing the DM role in front of CBs and Klejstan and Bedoya in front of Bradley in the second line.)


    Wood Altidore


    Green Pulisic


    FJ Brooks Cameron Yedlin
    (I’m worried that with a midfield diamond we may not have enough guys in central midfield though against Mex and will be giving them too much time on the ball.)

    Thoughts on Green? Some may not agree about starting Green, but you don’t make Bayern’s first team as a scrub. Regardless of minutes that’s more of an accomplishment than scoring 10-15 goals in MLS. Also I think he’s more of a striker if you go back and watch his goals against Milan in preseason every single one was a first touch strike. Same with his goals against Belgium and Cuba. However, his goal against New Zealand last night was a great show of control and getting a shot on goal with power and very much a wide midfielder type of goal. Passing and crossing are clearly not his first option though, he looks to shoot first. He’s clearly a good finisher so maybe he eventually plays a more forward role as a withdrawn striker.


    • PrekiIsGod

      I have nothing against Julian Green. I agree that he looked to be the class of last night’s US squad, and it was nice seeing a US winger (successfully) run at defenders, resulting in a goal.

      BUT, I just don’t know if starting two extremely young wingers (and I agree Pulisic should start) to open the Hex against Mexico of all teams is the wisest move. I’d feel more confident going with some more experience in the starting XI with Green as a viable 2nd half sub a la Bedoya. But hey, if Klinsi wants to roll the dice with Green, then I hope Julian lets it rip.


      • AMPhibian

        And I think there was a decent enough excuse for the keeper. Acosta ran around Julian, and the inside back appeared to be coming back through the middle to mark him. Right when he gets past Green, Green cuts inside, freezing that inside defender. The goalie clearly thinks Green is cutting past both defenders, but Green takes a quick shot between the two defenders and the goalie is left on his wrong foot with the shot obscured.

        I’m not sure why everyone insists on giving Julian as little credit as possible… Oh wait.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Joe Dirt

      The frog is right. If you watch the tap it appears that the second defender blocks the keepers view. The keeper can’t really see which way Green is leaning. He also had Altidore and Yedlin running center and back post so the keeper couldn’t cheat near post. The shot was so quick and hard and well placed he never had a chance. It was an exquisite goal.

      Been watching a long long time and other than occasional Dempsey or Donovan’s goal against Slovenia in 2010 I haven’t seen a US player control the ball and take on a defender for that many yards before firing a shot like that. I counted six or more touches to carry the ball that far. The ball was never more than a foot or two away from him and he had a defender backpedaling the whole time. He’s a shot first kind of guy and I think next level for him is picking out the right pass inside the box if he doesn’t have a clean shot. His shot last night was great but its not high percentage.

      Liked by 1 person

  • Ronniet

    Hands down, green deserves man of the match honors but IDK if scoring a few goals against Cuba and New Zealand will be enough to make the squad the next set of qualifiers. Mexico and Costa Rica are different animals and I’m not sure if he provides enough defensive cover or club minutes to be trusted against those two. He has to start playing at BM, not debatable, and there is no hurry to bring him along until that happens. Gooch for me looked really sharp also and is playing high level club football pretty much week in and week out, so Jurgen will definitely have his hands full trying to narrow down that next roster to 23

    Liked by 1 person

    • johnnyrazor

      Did he seem unfit, was his touch off, was he a step slow to the ball, was he lacking technical skill? No one available on the US roster would play for Bayern, Pulisic may have gotten a few minutes before Robben, Costa, and Comen returned, but not with them fit. If Green is better than other players at his position he should play. He goes everyday against players ten times better than MLS players see in matches on the weekend. Should Zusi or Bedoya get called up just because their teams are weaker. Yes this week was against weaker competition, but everyone else on the roster, all starters except Yedlin and Arriola who were regular starters last season, played the same competition and didn’t do as well.

      The bigger problem is defense, JK doesn’t view him as a central striker, against teams that sit back like Cuba and NZ we can play a 433 and he’s fine. Against Mexico and CR that wing player has to be deeper and help much more in defense, maybe he can do that we just haven’t seen him in that role.


      • Chase

        He actually tracked back a good amount (to some effect) in the NZ match. I was pleasantly surprised with his defending.


    • Turkmenbashy

      Asked of Green’s inclusion in the team in November, Klinsmann said: “[It’s] difficult to say. Maybe we send some people to watch his training sessions, just to spend a few days there and see how active and involved he is there as well.

      “I know everybody in that club. A lot also depends on how we come to a conclusion on what system we want to play against Mexico. But he left a very strong impression these 10 days.”


Add your comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More from SBI Soccer