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U.S. Men's National Team

USMNT handed heavy defeat by Costa Rica in WCQ

Photo by U.S. Soccer.

Photo by U.S. Soccer.

The U.S. Men’s National Team’s hoodoo in Costa Rica continued after a heavy 4-0 defeat in its second match of the hexagonal phase of World Cup qualifying on Tuesday.

Johan Venegas and Christian Bolanos opened the scoring for Costa Rica before second-half substitute Joel Campbell struck twice in four minutes to seal a massive victory for Los Ticos.

This is the first time the USMNT has begun the Hex with two defeats since it was introduced for 1998 World Cup qualifying.

The Costa Ricans controlled the game in the first half as Venegas was causing all sorts of issues for U.S. centerback John Brooks. The Montreal Impact forward nutmegged the defender on seven minutes before forcing a save out of Brad Guzan.

Christian Pulisic got more involved shortly thereafter. The Borussia Dortmund midfielder received a pass on the left flank from Jermaine Jones and knocked in a cross for Bobby Wood, but Keylor Navas smothered the ball before the forward got his foot to it.

Wood tried to return the favor before halftime as he sent a dangerous cross past Kendall Waston, but no USMNT player could get a foot to the ball.

Venegas finally scored the opener on the stroke of halftime as Bolanos took advantage of some open space on the left flank before his teammate hammered a header past Guzan.

The USMNT held on and mustered another opportunity through Johnson, but then everything unraveled on 68 minutes. Bryan Ruiz sent in a ball to Bolanos, who beat Timothy Chandler to the cross before heading the ball over the line to make it 2-0 for the hosts.

USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann made some changes, but so too did Costa Rica’s Oscar Ramirez. Campbell entered the match in the 67th minute and scored his team’s third of the night just seven minutes later. Brooks mistimed a long ball, the Arsenal man won possession, dribbled past the Hertha Berlin defender, and then calmly slotted the ball into the net.

Campbell completed his brace on another one-on-one chance with Guzan to seal a huge 4-0 victory.

Costa Rica now leads the Hex with six points after two games, with the USMNT stuck at the bottom with Trinidad & Tobago. The Americans face Honduras on March 24 in their next match before traveling to Panama on March 28.

85 comments
  • bizzy

    “On 29 July 2011, Klinsmann was named head coach of the United States”
    Wow….I have nothing. I have absolutely nothing
    Almost 6 years after taking over this team we’re still losing 4-0 (0-2 for the first time…ever)!!!!
    Sunil Gulati needs to go…
    Klinsmann needs to go…
    Just wow……

    Like

    • bizzy

      “….I told the players it won’t be the last 4 nil defeat of their careers”…I’m done with Klinsmann. I just can’t lol

      Like

    • usfan123

      it will never never happen, Gulati is preparing new extend contract for JK to 2026. Do not worry JK is experimenting of how to raise US soccer to the “f..king world class. The most stupid, dumpiest in the world is Gulati. If he have any self-respect he should first fire JK then resign.

      Like

      • El Comandante

        Lol, 2026 with Klinsman we’ll have Bradley and Jones playing with crutches or in wheel chairs.

        Like

    • Cravin' Frottage

      A shameful performance no doubt. And the arrogance of JK sticking to his garbage formation/tactics was almost beyond belief. Guy should be fired yesterday for this– somebody should tell him he is not Donald Trump. It doesn’t always work out for the guy who just doesn’t care to admit he was wrong…..

      And while I am (unfortunately) dragging politics into this….. let’s talk about Hillary Bradley for a second. Out of touch, entitled, unable to stop tripping over himself. Remember when we thought this guy was a “natural captain”? Egg on our faces. Can’t wait to hear his excuses (again). Dude seems to prefer playing passes with his shins and ankles at this point. Innovative… I guess. Always nice to have a passenger in the team.

      Well obviously I’m angry. Hire Arena. Hire Porter. Hire anybody who will look MB in the eye – while pointing at Pulisic – and say “that is the standard of performance we expect from a regular”

      Ok I’m done.

      Like

    • Big Red

      We’ve never won in Costa Rica and they were favored to win. The result everyone expected actually happened. We lost and we were supposed to lose. They made it to the quarters of the last World Cup. If this was T&T, I’d be worried. Costa Rica? Not so much.

      Like

      • Gary Page

        It’s not the loss, but the nature of the loss. One of the most pitiful performances I’ve seen from our team. They deserve to have a crowd meeting them at the airport when they return and boo them as they get off the plane. No heart, no fight, sloppy, just awful all around. While Klinsmann made some bad coaching decisions, the players deserve a lot of blame for this disaster, too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • kb

        After the last two gold cups, I learned that we can lose to any concacaf opponent at home. And if you look at the hex teams, we’re probably third or fourth in consistency and playing to our potential.

        Like

  • David M

    Clearly what this US team needs is more German players and coaches. Americans just don’t cut it.

    Like

    • Big Red

      Yes, I would have preferred Morales to Bradley. I also would like to have seen Green on the field.

      Like

  • El Comandante

    Another first for Klinsi, first time we start the Hex 0 points in 2 games and to top it off -5 goal difference. What an utter embarrassment.

    Like

  • jones

    The players looked like they didn’t want to be there right from the start. That should tell you everything about the management

    Like

  • johnnyrazor

    He has to go, and whomever comes in needs to revamp the roster. Yes, I expected to lose or maybe get a draw, but to not even compete?

    Like

  • TheFrenchOne

    This is a team who’s coach has lost them entirely. I can only hope Gulati sits down with the team hears them out about the state of affairs in the usmnt. This isn’t the ideal time to switch coaches, but other countries do it all the time. We Americans are too rigid when it comes to these issues. I would welcome the Bruce with open arms

    Like

    • SD

      This is absolutely the right time to switch coahes. We do not have another game until March. If you hire the coach now, he can get a group together for camp cupcake in january and then integrate the others in march….also, remember how much we were talking about mexico chaos last cycle….i would say turnabout is fair play….

      Like

  • Ronniet

    Don’t know where to begin after witnessing yet another historical feat in the negative column. There is still plenty to play for but I wonder if this team can realistically summon what it would take to qualify after. This team has looked I’ll prepared to start the hex and that is on Jurgen but all the same players are not stepping up so where do things go from here……

    Like

    • jones

      It really looked like they didn’t want to play for him any more. Probably tired of his silly head games and inability to prepare them

      Like

    • kb

      From all the defensive options, you chose those two? Brooks was single-handedly responsible for 2 goals, if not 3, and his sloppy mistakes could easily have resulted in 1-2 more. But I guess he gets a pass because he had a good Copa. Even though he’s been little more than just ‘potential’ before that.

      Like

  • Thegazelle

    Really liked Coach Klinsmann at times, and said some interesting things, but anyone can see it’s time.

    Like

  • johnnyrazor

    At least we don’t have to see this team again for 2 months really 4 since half of them will be with their club teams in January

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      At this point El Comandante I’d take you over Klinsman, do you have your Coaching License?

      Like

    • usfan123

      Any can be better than JK, but no more foreign coach, They cannot know how to motivate US player period.

      Like

    • Eastbaygrease

      Sigi Schmid.

      He has the most wins of any coach in MLS history. Created a winning dynasty at UCLA. He turned losing teams into MLS Champs at both Galaxy and Crew. He knows MLS and has an amazing eye for talent (Carlos Ruiz at LA, Montero at Souders, Romando at UCLA)

      Like

      • Guero

        As a Sounders fan, I would hate to see Sigi hired as USMNT coach. He showed the same tactical blindness as Klinis, in my opinion, but had superior talent to most of MLS to get by. Just my two cents.

        Like

      • Mac

        The same coach who never taught Yedlin any defense? Just told him to go out there and attack?

        Like

  • Benjamin C.

    Coaches lose the locker room all the time, particularly in pro level sports. And they get fired. I cannot see why Jurgen would be exempt from this, considering his team has quit on him and almost did against Mexico because of that bizarre formation decision. Only reason he keeps his job is due to incompetence and possible corruption with Sunil and U.S. soccer. No other serious federation would accept this.

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      They are in to him for a ton of money and US Soccer relatively doesn’t make that much just to pay him not to coach. Yes, they did that with Bradley, but he cost less than half of Klinsman. In college sports the boosters take up a collection to pay the buyouts, pro owners have millions and sometimes billions. Not sure how corruption would apply here, do you think JK is sliding Sunil a kick back that seems pretty ridiculous. But I get it I’m ticked off too.

      Like

      • Benjamin C.

        Corruption may be a strong word. Maybe a malaise that is leading to stagnation, where getting embarrassed because your coach can’t get the best from his players is just shrugged off.

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      • Super Nintendo Chalmers

        Yes they will owe him money, BUT it is significantly less than the revenue we would lose should we not qualify for Russia.

        Like

    • jones

      yes, it’s become a joke. Every time they put in a shocking performance or several, they suddenly look competent again and that’s justification for keeping him on. It’s like this time the players just decided not to do that again, they’d had it.

      Like

  • El Comandante

    I see Mexico Costa Rica and Panama going directly, USA and Honduras will vie for the fourth half spot. Mexico and Panama played an uneventful 0-0 draw, only three yellow in total. But we need a new coach, please. The time is now.

    Like

  • Jerad

    Shameful display. I can no longer defend Bradley. He no longer has the quality in the attack nor the nuts defensively. Please play the young stars that you have and revamp the team
    4-3-3
    GK: Guzan
    Yedlin-Hedges-Cameron(Capt)-F. Johnson
    Acosta-D. Williams-Pulsic
    J. Green- Wood- Gooch

    Like

    • Clover362

      Guzman is part of the problem as well. He is tentative in coming out to challenge and his distribution is aweful. GK has always been a position of strength but it is quickly becoming a weakness.

      Like

  • Byrdman

    When he put out that 3-5-2 and then blamed Jones, Bradley, Brooks, etc.. that is the recipe for loosing a locker room. Above all else you have to be honest with your team. Say it, “Hey guys, that one is on me. I let you down.” But instead to pass the buck kills any player loyalty or “buy in”. He has to go. But they won’t do it until they know they have a replacement lined up.

    Like

    • Guero

      He has a consistent pattern of blaming players, which is deplorable from a leadership perspective. One would think that doesn’t sit well with them, but I’ve never heard any internal griping, has anyone?

      Like

      • johnnyrazor

        Tuchel does that at times at Dortmund, I think its a German thing. Not something culturally excepted here in the US, somebody should probably mention that to him.

        Like

    • johnnyrazor

      Trouble is who do you get at this point? All the younger American managers didn’t look very good this year. Oscar Pareja, at least he lost because his best player got hurt. Marsch, Berhalter, Porter, Kreis all have major questions right now. Van Gaal? If you think JK is arrogant. What’s that leave trying to recycle Bruce? Or someone with no professional level managing experience like Reyna, Boca, or Cherundolo?

      Like

      • Guero

        I honestly don’t have a name to replace him, and agree completely about the names mentioned. And no, please no VG! I don’t particularly care where they come from, as long as we get better. But it’s always a gamble moving on.

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      • Milkshake of Despair

        Last I read Cherundolo was coaching a youth team at his old club. Not exactly a qualifying resume for USMNT, but maybe in a few more years. What about Freidel?

        Like

    • SilverRey

      “Hey guys, that one is on me. I let you down.” Words never spoken by JK.

      “Hey guys, that one is on you. Bradley and Jones let you down.” Typical JK quote.

      Like

    • Turkmenbashy

      Wait… Its JK’s fault that Bradley, Jones, Chandler, Fabian, and Pulisic are unable to clog a midfield? really? Its JK’s fault that the team goes down to MX and doesn’t show up? I bet Guatemala 4 years ago was his fault too, huh? Name a player out of position (other than Besler, who, btw, not terrible in these two games) in either of these two games. What, Bradley and Jones don’t know how to play together after 6 years of doing it? FJ and Chandler must not understand playing on the flanks… that must be it… despite the fact that they do that for their club all the time.

      What a joke. This panic is unbecoming.

      We were missing a key (I had no idea how key) cog in defense… and then lost Howard (I did know how important he is). Of course our defense is going to be in rough shape. BTW, I now understand why Guzan is back-up, he has lost confidence, quickness, skill, something. Not that he is bad, mind you… he is just not world class… I think its the communication, something is missing when he is in, attention to detail, awareness, or maybe its that cameron is gone. Not sure. Either way, I put Mexico’s loss on him (but not this one). It’s time to try out Horvath.

      I put crappy substitutions in the CR game entirely on JK. I would not have made the changes he did. But beyond that, bad results like these are not the coach’s fault… just like 7-0 Mexico wasn’t their coach’s fault. No one on the bench or otherwise available and uninjured in the US player pool was making a difference in this game.

      Like

  • Guero

    Does anyone know, and I’m completely ignorant here, what it is that would be required to get rid of Gulati? He may have to go before Klinsi, as he is the one who hired, rehired, and now won;t fire him. Is there some sort of mechanism for firing him, or is he untouchable?

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      The board of directors would have to remove him, not sure that really is an option barring something illegal, otherwise he would be up for election before the board in 2018.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Me

        I’m not saying for sure, but there may or may not be some audio floating around where Gulati was bragging to Billy Bush on the US team bus about getting a little hands-y when he’s attracted to someone.

        Liked by 1 person

  • El Comandante

    Notice I am not trolling today. This is serious stuff. I saw the first signs of the debacle in that Gold Cup with the semis loss to Jamaica and the cowardly loss to Panama in the third place match. Whatever, good luck USA and I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving, a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    Liked by 2 people

  • Benjamin C.

    If, and it is a big if, Jurgen gets the boot, the two names I’ve heard floated by media members are Arena and Pareja.

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      I am on board with Pareja, he’ll play Accosta in his correct spot so that solves to problems with one switch. New manager new CM, win-win.

      Like

      • Benjamin C.

        Pareja would be my choice as well. I think he could reinvigorate some of our players who have stagnated and bring in players that have been in the wilderness for at least a look. A fresh excitement.

        Like

      • Socceroo

        I like it. And yeah, at this point a coaching change may be the only way to get Bradley off the field.

        Like

  • Yevgeniy

    2 pieces of silver lining:

    1. Jurgen might finally be fired
    2. People bash MLS all the time, but didn’t MLS players outperform Bundesliga players tonight? None of CR’s MLS players are even stars in MLS

    Like

  • Clover362

    Player for player the US is more talented then Costa Rica. Pretty much everyone on the USMNT plays worse when called in for the national team then they do for their club team. If that doesn’t make it obvious where the problem is to the powers that be the. This cycle might really be lost.

    Like

    • jones

      YES, THIS. With a few exceptions, most really do play better with their club teams. Of course other national teams have this issue due to the nature of things, but I don’t think it’s so widespread and consistent.

      Like

    • Turkmenbashy

      Clover and Jones… It must be whichever Argentina coach it is’s/was fault that Messi plays better for Barcelona than Argentina too, huh.

      Like

    • Mac

      Well this just isn’t true. Most players play best for their club because its their, you know, club… they’re there full-time. National squads meet for 2 week camps (4 weeks to prep for tourney) a few times a year. What makes that, 8-10, intermittent weeks a year? There’s a reason international soccer is considered to be played at a lower tactical level.

      Liked by 1 person

  • wood chip zip

    Gulati is the problem, klinsmann is the Manifestation but most importantly a non existent US Soccer Non Profit Board of Directors. You all are pieces of feces neglecting your duty to let this poser bring us down to historic lows

    Like

  • Jonathan Gilbert

    When I fell in love with the USMNT (many, many years ago) what drew me to the team was not the amazing skill or the wonderful technique they showed, it was the never say die attitude and utter pride to wear the colors and represent the country on the field. I saw almost none of that tonight, and honestly have not seen much of it throughout Klinsi’s reign. My joy in watching this team has slowly eroded over the past few years and I think it has to do with me seeming to care more than the players and the coach do. I know this is not true, but they do not show us the passion.

    I believe this is all on the coach, who has little to no comprehension about how to go about actually winning soccer games beyond shaking his pom poms and saying “come on guys, play your game! Go at them!”. He can identify talent, but cannot figure out how to properly put the pieces on the board and how to move them around like a professional. This causes pro athletes to become hesitant and confused where they are usually confident and aggressive. Why practice in one lineup just to play in another? Why gel with one set of guys to just toss them aside a few moths later? It is like throwing darts, sometimes he hits the mark and other times he hits the wall, not good enough at this level.

    I am tired of playing a midfield that has never worked correctly together, playing outside backs in the midfield and vice versa, forcing formation on player instead of seeing what you have and putting them in the best position to succeed.

    I used to really be excited when the USMNT games where coming up, now I just wonder what kind of circus will come to town this time. Sad and frustrating are the words that come to mind right now.

    Like

    • Grunt

      No need to write more when so many of you have already summed up my thoughts and feelings. The excitement I used to feel for game day has long since been replaced with trepidation. What foolishness will we see from Klinnsman today? Sad.

      Like

  • shaggie96

    We will never make it to the next level if we don’t upgrade the central midfield. I used to be a big fan of both of those guys, but they just aren’t the same players they used to be. We need ball players. Both of their first touches were atrocious and passing accuracy is abysmal. They are both too slow, especially to play a two-man midfield. It’s impossible to believe that six years ago JK was clogging up the middle with three d-mids when he shouldn’t have been, and now, that’s probably what we should be doing and he doesn’t do it. The problem is I have no idea who to replace them with. We’re starting to get a promising stable of young attacking players, but the CM cupboard is bare.

    Omar needs to be put on the shelf. I get that this game was a dumpster fire for Brooks, but I just don’t see how OG can continue to get runouts at this level. It’s a bad combination. Brooks plays great with more experienced, vocal partners to help him in positioning, Gonzalez does as well. Neither of those guys can help the other in that way.

    I haven’t said much about JK for a while, because I didn’t see a point since he’s not going anywhere, but I’m growing tired. Why the hell not put Gooch, Pulisic and Green in there together and see what they can do? Wood and Altidore are not a good pair up top, regardless of the Mexico goal. Make one of them a lone striker with a mobile, dangerous group of attacking mids behind them and see what happens. Enough rambling.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Bac

    1- Everyone keeps talking about the buyout for JK, what would be the financial ramifications of not qualifying?
    2- I’ve said in the past if he was gonna go, do it after the Gold Cup or the Copa. Gulati sure seemed to show some urgency during the Copa..but frankly it’s now or never. If someone new comes in they would at least have the January camp to see players before the March qualifiers… there would be no other opportunity without pulling out a Mexico miracle.
    3- Even if he stays and we qualify (which I still think we will) I don’t see a magic bullet before Russia-The relationship between him and the players must be at a point where it’s just too toxic to see anything positive.
    4- Can anyone else do worse at this point? Even if it’s Herzog?
    5- By inserting Orozco vs Mexico when we had momentum instead of moving Fabian and bringing in a fresh attacker shows me he decided to play for a draw..and subbing out Pulisic first when it was 2-0… Well I just don’t know what to say other than these moves show me a desperate coach trying not to lose instead of trying to win..which is the best way to ensure that you lose…

    Like

  • Adam M.

    I have regularly defended JK based on his results and decisions, and now I say he needs to go based on his results and decisions. His experiment against Mexico was a disaster, his continued reliance on a Jones-Bradley midfield is inexplicable (as his is over-reliance on Jones and Bradley individually), and his subs over these two games made no sense at all. These two games followed two lackluster friendlies against weak opponents. JK haters have had a pretty poor case against him until now, but with a big window ahead of the next game now is the time for a change.

    Like

    • Nate Dollars

      “JK haters have had a pretty poor case against him until now”

      no, the “haters” had just already seen the writing on the wall. and ironically, i (as one of the “haters”) don’t think that these games should get klinsmann fired.

      as someone else pointed out, these were 2 of our 3 toughest games in the hex. we can still fairly easily qualify for russia, even if we have to win the asian playoff.

      yes, it sucks to lose to mexico (always), especially in columbus, and the 3-5-2 experiment was idiotic, but it’s not like klinsmann’s known for his great tactics.

      and yes, the costa rica loss was demoralizing, but the result was expected, and klinsmann’s teams have never been known for their do-or-die attitude.

      so i agree he should be fired, but for his incompetence as demonstrated over 6 years, not 2 games.

      Liked by 1 person

  • Len

    Waking up to these comments. In the past, I’ve been on the fence about JK, watching some bad games where I could not tell if it was a talent issue or bad coaching (or both). At times, there was the occasional ray of sunshine and I really disliked the Bob Bradley era. Also, none of us knows what goes on in training. This morning, I’ve crossed over into the fire JK camp.

    I think that starting the Mexico game in a new formation was unforgivable. I think that as an international coach, you have to have some measure of understanding of both your team and the competition to do something like that and it really has to work at least to some degree. Instead, it tied one hand (or one foot) behind the team’s back. I think that’s unforgivable, and yes, if it had worked, I would not be in the fire JK camp.

    I’m not saying anything would be different but I think we really missed Cameron. I think the decision to stay with OG instead of Birnbaum was a mistake. I’ve said elsewhere that it’s an irony that OG plays in a technical league when his foot skills and passing ability are sub par (awful at times). I could live with the decision for the Mexico game because of his “familiarity” with that league (although many of Mexico’s players don’t play in that league) but leaving him in smacks of stubborness (was Birnbaum sucking it up in practice?). So we have two giant defenders playing against a quick team.

    To add further irony, we couldn’t use those giant defenders offensively because MB can’t hit a dead ball. How, at this level, can that happen? Does he do wonderfully in practice and then not in a game, and how many games of sucking at it does it take to use someone else? Fabian, Pulisic? Did he sub in Zusi to take the free kicks? I can’t see any other reason for that sub. Did he take out Pulisic so his confidence wouldn’t be hurt? That’s stretching it a bit but I can’t see any other reason for that sub. Behind two goals, why wouldn’t you take out Besler who gives nothing offensively, put Fabian back at left back to work with Pulisic on the left and bring on Gooch for the other wing.

    The commentators seemed surprised that the Costa Ricans high pressured. Why would you be surprised? That’s the way to play the US because they don’t have sufficient skill to play out of it especially with OG and Besler in the back. For those who don’t like FJ at left back, that may be part of the reason for him to be there. Combination of high pressure with lack of skill on our part results in turnovers, quality chances and isolating and frustrating our attacking players.

    I hear Chandler is having a good season in the Bundesliga. I wish him luck there. He seems a decent player but ((and I certainly could be wrong here) he doesn’t appear to have the passion for the national team. If you look at many of the players on other Concacaf teams, I may not agree with their tactics (I don’t) but it looks to me like they would give anything for the shirt.

    Long rant but last two game were pretty rough. Hopefully, we can win the games we need to win and still get through but the margin of error shrinks and a surprise loss or tie where a win is expected could cost us our chance for 2018. Time for JK to move on and time to say thank you to MB and probably JJ (always liked MB and loved JJ). We have camp cupcake and any friendlies before March to work in new coaches/midfielders. Not saying it will happen but it’s as good a time as any.

    Liked by 1 person

  • jb

    I’ve never seen a US team quit before, but they did last night. I can get over losses and bad performances, that’s sport. But when a team quits like the USMNT did after they scored the second, there just isn’t any coming back from that. There is obviously something seriously wrong with the leadership on this team. In every other pro sport, when a coach loses the locker room the coach is fired. I don’t need to be in the locker room to know that JK has lost this team, I saw it on the field. Whatever happened is not necessarily all the fault of the coach, but the solution is always the same. New leadership is needed, and it must happen now while there is still a chance for us to qualify for Russia 18.

    Like

  • Hannibal4467

    I have always been against knee-jerk reactions during rough spells, in any sport. The grass is not always greener on the other side. But, over the past couple of years I have been slowly losing my faith in Klinsman. This past week has been the breaking point for me and now I think its time for a coaching change. Klinsman needs to be let go, with a thank you for all of the work he put into this. It started when Donovan was left off the 2014 world cup team and has been getting worse each time.

    The USMNT has always had an underlying attitude of never quitting, never lose faith. They have always had that American panache, particularly when the chips were down. But the team I have been watching over the past year looks lifeless and beaten. The one thing I believe a non-American coach cannot bring to the team, or understand, is that rebellious American attitude. Even when we lost close games, it was still great to watch because the other team knew they had been in a fight. That American Outlaw attitude has been missing for some time and we need to get it back.

    Klinsman must go. I really like the idea of Bruce Arena taking over. I think he would bring back our lost swagger.

    Like

  • Super Nintendo Chalmers

    Generally, I have been pro Kiinsi BUT last night was such a debacle that he must be fired now. There is plenty of time to find a coach between now and Camp Cupcake and give them a chance to evaluate the current roster as well as bring in some new talent.

    If somehow we don’t get at least 3-4 points in the next two fixtures against Honduras and at Panama it might be too late to still qualify for Russia, so at that point, firing JK would be like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

    There is no shame per se in losing to either Mexico or at Costa Rica or even both. However, the manner in which we played; the personnel we used; and the tactical decisions IMO are proof that “he has lost the locker room.”

    As Rongen kept repeating both in the first half and early in the second, the game was screaming for Klejstan. The lineup to start with was terrible but the players with the exception of Pullisic were worse. I would have started Yedlin and FJ as the fullbacks and played Birnbaum instead of Gonzales. Brooks was abysmal last night. Bradley needs to be benched. Jones kept giving the ball away. Chandler was jogging and brought no desire.

    I realize there were limitations on the team due to the injury to Cameron and Bedoya not being able to play, BUT there was still sufficient talent to at least show some heart. The opponent demanded we play a 4-3-3. Pullisic should have been shifted to forward, and Gooch should have started as a wide midfielder. Pullisic and Klejstan seemed to have developed an understanding in their two previous games. Sure it was SVG and TNT, but there was something to build on for these two fixtures.

    Guzan did make two good saves in the first half, but IMO he is not the answer. I would like to see Horvath or someone else (no Yarborough please).

    Also, was I wrong or did JK only use two subs. At 4-0, this was the time to cap-tie CCV. He couldn’t play any worse than Brooks or Gonzalez.

    I don’t know who should replace Klinsmann but they need someone new now. IMO, it is mistake to hire coaches for two WC cycles. Bruce Arena was not successful in 2006 in large part because we were in the Group of Death, but he should have beaten Ghana and done better against the Czechs. Bradley was fired for the 2011 Gold Cup fiasco. It is time for a new coach. Period.

    Like

    • Shaggie96

      Is it possible that CCV came in under the assurance that he wouldn’t be cap-tied? I seem to recall it happening before. Maybe he is keeping his options open with England. He cap-tied Miazga exactly when we all thought he would, which leads me to believe he would’ve done the same here if it were an option. JK may not be a brilliant tactician, but I doubt he screws up something this obvious.

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    • Bryan

      Regarding the 2011 GC, Bradley was fired for losing to Mexico in the final. Klinnsman lost to Jamaica in the Semis then the team played disgracefully in the third place game.Bradley had to go, but i’m not sure why Jurgen gets a different set of standards.

      Like

      • Mac

        Not defending JK but… Bradley was fired not for losing to Mexico in the final, but for going up 2-0 in that final, and the Confed Cup, having teams adjust at half, and then proceeding to smash Bradley and the USMNT.

        Also, for as good a WC as 2010 was, that was the easiest group we probably will ever be in until we enter the WC ranked. And despite that group, we needed extra-time magic by Donovan against Algeria to do it.

        Basicly, all the evidence pointed to Bradley maxing out his ability to take the program forward.

        Liked by 1 person

  • Joe Dirt

    I remember the 2006 WC game against Ghana when the Ghanaian forward stole the ball from Claudio Reyna’s feet for a breakaway goal to seal the game and end our WC without getting out of the group. Watching Bradley giving away unforced turnovers and errant passes that only slow everything down makes the feel the same was as Reyna. Of course Reyna was over 30 by 2006 and Bradley is still young but has not been as effect since his injury prior the CR game last cycle. We need a true DM who can pass out of the back and link with two other forward attacking mids. I’d like to see whoever is the coach use a 4-3-3 where the midfield line has one deep lying DM and two box to box CM. I’d like to see a front three that presses the other team higher and we don’t get that sort of pressing with Altidore he just doesn’t have the energy for it. So here’s my lineup if everyone’s healthy:

    __________________Wood________________
    Green_____________________________Pulisic

    _______Klejstan_____________FJ___________
    ___________________(XX)_________________

    (XXX)________Brooks____Cameron______Yedlin

    _________________Howard_________________

    Brooks had one bad game if he continues showing this bad as he was last night we have problems there too. I’m willing to give a still young in CB years player the benefit of the doubt on one bad game but if it continues you have to look for something else. Chandler still may work out but Yedlin’s speed allows him to do more in attack. Make Cameron captain for the rest of this cycle.

    Who plays DM. I think we need to answer that with the January and Febuary friendlies or we are screwed. MB and JJ just aren’t what they used to be, loved them but got to move on. I’d like to see Dax McCarthy get a look. Also, Alfredo Morales, D. Williams, maybe even Jonathan Spector he plays that deep lying role for Birmingham City. What about Bedoya at DM? Maurice Edu? Kitchen? Stanko? Cameron if Birnbaum can reliable play CB. Any others? Calling all DMs report for duty please. Be my guest to add other names we need to open up that position for competition. My opinion right now Dax McCarthy because he’s strong defensively and positionally aware of where he needs to be.

    Who plays LB? That question is like asking Who’s On First? FJ, Besler, Acosta have all been tried but FJ is better in midfield, Besler doesn’t have the ball skills to play the ball forward other than long balls, Acosta still questionable. Maybe look at Vilafana, bring back Garza if healthy, and maybe see if Castillo still can play decent enough there defensively he certainly has the touch to move the ball forward and attack rather that hoof balls over the top and play back passes to his keeper and CBs. My opinion right now Edgar Castillo, he’s decent enough defending but also gives you the width in attack with his ball skills.

    So thats it. Find a DM who can play reliable defense and link with more forward lying MFs. Find a LB who can let us use FJ higher up but can also play the ball out of the back and be a wide threat in attack. And Brooks needs to get his shit together or else. Cameron, dude don’t get hurt. Howard, ditto.

    Alitore, Bradley, and JJ may still be around the team but subs/locker room guys. Altidore just doesn’t have the motor to press the other team as they link from CB to MF and this allows teams to have lots of time on the ball moving thru midfield. It also forces MB and JJ to move higher to press when Altidore is not.

    God help us we need it. Flame away….

    Like

    • Bryan

      Brooks was in fact terrible last night but are we forgetting that as bad as he was last night he was just as good in the Copa?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Joe Dirt

        Thats what so shocking. He can play lights out against Chile, Colombia, and Argentina and throw a turd against Costa Rica like that. He’s young for a CB still but that shouldnt be an excuse at his level.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Turkmenbashy

        Joe, in fairness, the entire team laid a turd last night. Sometimes that shit happens. Also, some of how bad Brooks looked that night is Gonzales.

        Like

    • Shaggie96

      I agree for the most part with your 4-3-3. I would say pair Miazga with Brooks and move Cameron to DM. Bedoya at AM and move FJ to LB. Of course I suggested playing FJ at AM in the same formation a few months ago and got run out of the building. If we had a better option at left back is say give it a go.

      Like

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