Top Stories

Confederations Cup Final: USA vs. Brazil (Matchday Commentary)

USA CrestBrazil Logo 

The U.S. men's national team takes on Brazil in the Confederations Cup final today (2pm, ESPN), the first international tournament final in the history of the U.S. team.

The Americans will be looking to exact some revenge on the Brazilian, who handed them a 3-0 loss in group play. Things have changed quite a bit since that match, with the United States posting wins against Egypt and Spain by a combined 5-0 margin.

I will be providing live commentary before and during today's match so you are welcome to follow the match here on SBI. As always, feel free to share your own thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the match.

———————–

FINAL– Some final questions for SBI Mafia members as I close out this post. What U.S. player impressed you the most in this tournament? Who surprised you the most? Are you feeling more confident about the U.S. team's chances in the 2010 World Cup?

Share your thoughts below. That's all for me. Thank you for following along here.

———————–

FINAL– Brazil lifts the trophy tonight, but the U.S. national team has lifted the U.S. soccer program to a new level and the experience gained at this tournament will be invaluable heading toward the 2010 World Cup.

Seriously, think about it. Can you remember a U.S. national team that can boast the type of experience and matches and results that this current group boasts?

———————–

FINAL– Ready to talk about who starts vs. Mexico? Nah, that can wait. Let's think about this tournament and all the impressive performances in this tournament. Seriously, think about it people. The U.S. national team didn't just win games, they played some great soccer, scored some beautiful goals and showed tremendous heart. This team helped earn the type of respect from the soccer world that hasn't existed before.

———————–

FINAL– Clint Dempsey finishes with the Bronze Ball as third most valuable player of the tournament. Luis Fabiano won the Silver Ball and Kaka won the Golden Ball.

———————–

FINAL– Some players really stepped up in this tournament and established themselves as key players heading toward the World Cup. Jonathan Spector, Jay DeMerit and Charlie Davies come away from this tournament looking like the starters the team has needed.

———————–

FINAL- Tim Howard wins the Goalkeeper of the Tournament award. Very deserving.

———————–

FINAL-  Tim Howard was easily the Man of the Match. He made countless clutch saves, but could do nothing on the three Brazil goals.

———————–

FINAL– If the U.S. team went into this tournament wanting to know where it stands a year ahead of the World Cup then the Americans have to feel good about what they learned. Several key players will eventually make their way back into the mix, such as Maurice Edu, Brian Ching, Steve Cherundolo and eventually Jermaine Jones, and when you combine them, with this group, as well as some up-and-coming players who will get looks in the Gold Cup, things are looking up a year from the 2010 World Cup.

———————–

FINAL– Kudos to Brazil, which never stopped coming despite the deficit. They kept creating, kept attacking in waves and eventually found chances to finish. Kaka, Luis Fabiano, Robinho, Maicon. These are the world's best players for a reason and they showed why today. 

———————–

FINAL– Brazil 3, USA 2. A tough result to swallow considering the first-half 2-0 lead, but the Americans walk away from this tournament with plenty to be proud about. The team came of age here and gained a bunch of confidence. In the end Brazil just had too many weapons.

———————–

90th minute– It's tough to think about now for U.S. fans, but this tournament is still a performance to be proud of, today's loss notwithstanding. That's if this score holds.

———————–

90th minute– Time running out now. Any more miracles left?

———————–

89th minute– Onyewu header high.

———————–

88th minute– Conor Casey is on for Ricardo Clark. USA corner kick.

———————–

87th minute– Don't see the Americans coming back from this.

———————–

85th minute- GOAL BRAZIL!!!!!! Lucio with a header off an Elano corner kick. WIDE Open on that header, beating Dempsey. Brazil 3, USA 2

———————–

84th minute– Brazil is knocking on the door, corner kick after a good look in the box.

———————–

83rd minute– Bornstein with some good energy, but Kljestan with a weak pass picked off.

———————–

82nd minute– Robinho WIDE. Brazil's just so dangerous.

———————–

81st minute– Bornstein sends a shot wide. Needs to look for the pass there.

———————–

79th minute– Melo fouls Donovan and is lucky not to get a second yellow.

———————–

78th minute– Kaka beat Spector to the endline on the Brazil goal. It was bound to happen if they kept letting people run at Spector, who couldn't keep stopping them.

———————–

76th minute– The Americans are tied and tired and you have to wonder if they have a third goal in them.

———————–

75th minute– Robinho with the first header off the crossbar, Fabiano with the finish. Onyewu got caught sleeping.

Kljestan and Bornstein are in for Altidore and Feilhaber.

———————–

74th minute- GOAL BRAZIL. And it's Fabiano again. A header off a rebounded shot. Brazil 2, USA 2. It was inevitable.

———————–

74th minute– Sacha Kljestan is coming on, probably for Feilhaber.

———————–

73rd minute– Davies wtih a dangerous run but can't beat the last man. Good moves though.

———————–

72nd minute– Americans absorbing TOO much pressure now. They need possession and could use some fresh legs.

———————–

71st minute– SAVE HOWARD!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOW, Stops Fabiano on a clear chance. CLUTCH

———————–

70th minute– Altidore looks gassed.

Lucio with a yellow card for a cheap swipe at Altidore.

———————–

66th minute– Dani Alves and Elano come in for Ramires and Andres Santos.

———————–

66th minute– Donovan with a blast from 25 and it forces a tough save from Julio Cesar.

SAVE JULIO CESAR. DEMPSEY with a great left-footed shot.

———————–

65th minute– USA is looking tired right now. Brazil just keeps on coming. Americans need a breather. They're getting one now with some possession.

———————–

63rd minute– Brazil is knocking on the door here and Americans are holding up well.

Is it getting to the point where Bob Bradley has to think about substitutions?

———————–

62nd minute– Brazil is pressing very hard now.

———————–

61st minute– Wow, did the USA actually get a call go their way? One replace looked like that was a Kaka goal.

———————–

60th minute– SAVE HOWARD. Stops a free Kaka header. WOW. How'd that not go in? He hits it up off the underside of the crossbar.

———————–

59th minute– SPECTOR with ANOTHER great play. Man of the Match for my money at this point.

———————–

59th minute– SAVE HOWARD!!! Stops a Lucio header. Wow. Clutch.

———————–

58th minute– Brazil corner after Spector knocks the ball out from Kaka.

———————–

57th minute– Howard runs out to catch a Maicon cross. How good is Maicon? He's the best right back in the world. That's how good.

———————–

55th minute– Brazil awarded a free kick. Feilhaber grabbed Kaka's jersey. Dangerous.

———————–

53rd minute– Great chance for the americans but Davies can't spot Donovan's run. That had potential. Feilhaber fouls Kaka for a Brazil free kick. Dangerous.

———————–

52nd minute– Spector with another great play and here come the Americans, well for a second. Some nice possession though.

———————–

50th minute– U.S. team looks to have shaken that early goal off and are attacking again.

Feilhaber wtih a nice run forward, but his cross from close range is stopped.

———————–

49th minute– Americans must find some posssession and slow things down.

———————–

47th minute– Fabiano's shot went through Jay DeMerit's legs and leaves Howard no chance. How will the Americans respond?

———————–

46th minute- GOAL BRAZIL!!!!!!!! Luis Fabiano finishes and just like that, Brazil is down 2-1. WOW. What a start.

———————–

46th minute– And we're back.

———————–

HALFTIME– What should we expect from Brazil. I can't see how Dunga wouldn't put Pato in this match. They need a spark and he can provide that. Dani Alves is another option. I don't see Dunga standing pat. 

———————–

HALFTIME– Stellar performances all the way around. Tim Howard has been huge, Jonathan Spector has been clutch with defending and that perfect cross, Onyewu has dominated in the air again, Dempsey and Donovan finished off clutch chances and put in major defensive work and Clark has stepped up to fill the void left by Michael Bradley's absence.

What must the Americans do better? They can't keep putting Spector on one-v-one situations with the likes of Robinho and Kaka. He has been up to the task each time so far, but that's not a formula for success over a full match. 

———————–

HALFTIME– USA 2, Brazil 0.

Enjoy that for a second.

The Americans were applauded for playing a great game vs. Spain, but this first half has been even better. That last 45 minutes has to be one of the best halves played by an American team in USMNT history. Disciplined defending, clinical finishing, great passing. Now, they haven't been winning the possession battle in midfield, but that doesn't really matter. 

———————–

46th minute– Whoa, Brazil gets a dangerous ball across but nobody gets to it.

———————–

45th minute– Onyewu clears away another cross. Brazil has a minute left to find a goal before halftime.

———————–

43rd minute– U.S. team doing very well not to foul in the final third. Forcing Brazil to make perfect passes to break them down.

———————–

42nd minute– Onyewu heads away another Maicon cross. He's done very well yet again.

———————–

42nd minute– Howard saves a Robinho shot, the corner is cleared. Brazil still knocking.

———————–

41st minute– Five minutes left in this half. Americans MUST keep the pressure on.

———————–

40th minute– Spector with a great play vs. Kaka. Well done.

———————–

39th minute– Free kick sequence is headed clear for a USA counter. Davies runs at Brazil but his final touch lets him down.

———————–

38th minute– Cesar catches the corner, leading to a Brazil counter. Brazil draws a foul about 45 yards out.

———————–

37th minute– USA corner.

———————–

36th minute– Altidore draws a foul and a DANGEROUS free kick on the right edge of the area.

———————–

35th minute– Fabiano with a header high.

The U.S. midfield isn't getting much possession but their positioning and ability to limit Brazil passing options is big. Clark is playing very well today.

———————–

35th minute– SAVE HOWARD!!!!!!! Clutch stop from close range. Brazil corner.

———————–

34th minute– Americans need to keep attacking. They've exposed Brazil's back-line and will find more chances if they press.

———————–

30th minute– Americans come close again, but no one can put a head on a Davies across.

USA is STILL attacking.

———————–

29th minute– What a beautiful counterattack and talk about paying Brazil back with the same type of play that burned the Americans in the group stage meeting.

———————–

28th minute– Holy Heck. The Americans are beating Brazil by two goals and has Brazil stunned right now.

———————–

27th minute- GOAL USA!!!!!!!!!! LANDON DONOVAN FINISHEs A BEAUTIFUL SEQUENCE. WOW. USA 2, Brazil 0.

———————–

27th minute– SAVE HOWARD. On Maicon, Brazil corner.

———————–

25th minute– SAVE HOWARD!! Stops a Melo blast.

Melo gets a yellow afterwards, not sure for what. That could be key later.

———————–

25th minute– The U.S. midfield is missing Michael Bradley right now. His possession isn't being replaced right now.

———————–

23rd minute– Haven't the Americans learned their lesson about sliding tackles? This Swedish referee is actually pretty good and even-tempered from what I can remember of past matches I've seen, so we'll see if he keeps the reds in his pocket.

———————–

21st minute– This is the first time all tournament that Brazil has trailed. How will they respond? So far, they're looking determined.

Onyewu with a clutch header to clear danger.

———————–

20th minute– Brazil with some possession and has a pair of shots blocked. They're knocking on the door.

———————–

18th minute– Great ball in from Doovan but nobody is there.

Bocanegra gets a yellow card for a foul on Kaka.

———————–

18th minute– Clark doing well early on. Altidore draws a foul.

———————–

17th minute– Not that Brazil wasn't going to attack, only now the U.S. team has to look for chances to catch Brazil on the counter as they send numbers forward.

———————–

16th minute– Clark does well to block a shot. Brazil is going to bring the attacking numbers now so this should be an entertaining match the rest of the way.

———————–

14th minute– USA is pressing for a second. Corner kicks come close to creating a chance. Brazil is shaken.

———————–

13th minute– Davies on the break, gets held up, forces a corner. Nice sequence.

———————–

13th minute– SAVE HOWARD!!!!!! BIG stop on a Robinho shot.

———————–

12th minute– On one replay it almost looks as if the cross catches Dempsey in the knee and he whiffed on the shot attempt. No matter how it goes in, that's a huge goal.

———————–

11th minute– Spector with a great cross in and Dempsey gets a slight volleyed touch on it to send it just inside the far post. WHAT A FINISH and what a cross.

Dempsey with a tribute to Michael Jackson dues the leg kick. Nice touch.

———————–

10th minute- GOAL USA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DEMPSEY WITH THE FINISH> WOWWWW

———————–

9th minute– Brazil controlling the game early. Clark and Feilhaber need to start winning more possession. Dempsy has been very active early, but that's it really for the USA.

———————–

8th minute– Brazil with some early possession. USA needs to start finding the ball and holding on to it. No Feilhaber sighting yet.

———————–

7th minute– Kaka flashes for a header but sends it wide.

———————–

7th minute– Brazil corner.

———————–

5th minute– Onyewu steps up well to stop a Brazil challenge.

DeMerit heads a cross out, Brazil corner.

———————–

3rd minute– Dempsey tries one from distance but it's a bit weak. Julio Cesar is in great form these days and the Americans will need great accuracy to beat him.

———————–

2nd minute– Brazil with some early possession. Clark with some good early touches.

———————–

1st Minute– We are underway. 

———————–

PRE-GAME– The Americans need to control their nerves and play a smart and disciplined match and first 15 minutes.

———————–

PRE-GAME– A tribute to Marc Vivien-Foe who died in the 2003 Confederations Cup. His son gives a touching speech. Can't believe it has been six years already.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Which big-game player will step up for the Americans today? Altidore or Dempsey? Both are known for scoring goals in big games. Can they do it again?

———————–

PRE-GAME– Does anybody know who invented the Vuvuzela? Whoever it needs to be put in jail. Or at least forced to be locked in a room and listen to those horns for 24 hours straight.

———————–

PRE-GAME– It's almost time for kickoff.

———————–

PRE-GAME– For the second time (at least) Ricardo Clark can't avoid staring into the camera. It's like he's in an episode of The Office anytime a camera's around him.

Americans look poised and serious.

Brazilian anthem, still one of the better anthems. Why? No idea, just is. Maybe because I'm used to watching good soccer after hearing it.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Okay, so many USA fans are watching this match at bars (and stadiums), but many of you are watching at home and/or in front of your computers. If you plan on following the commentary on SBI today let me know you're here and where you're checking in from.

———————–

PRE-GAME– SOmeone else who could boost their value today is Bob Bradley. If he leads the United States to a Confederations Cup title, we can start thinking about an American head coach who European clubs could go after following the 2010 World Cup.

———————–

PRE-GAME- The teams are in the tunnel. Excited yet?

Okay, let's get some drinking game suggestions. 

———————–

PRE-GAME– Along with having a chance to win the United States' first international trophy, today's match is a chance for several American players to make some serious money by upping their transfer values. Onyewu, DeMerit, Clark, Donovan, Altidore and Davies have all helped boost their value in this tournament and all could be looking at big summer moves thanks to Confederations Cup performances.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Brazil and the United States faced each other just a month after that 2003 Confederations Cup match, in a Gold Cup semifinal in Miami. It was July 23, 2003 and it is easy to forget that the Americans nearly pulled off the upset on that day only to have an 89th-minute equalizer from a young standout named Kaka force overtime. Diego converted a penalty in overtime after a Cory Gibbs foul in the penalty area to give Brazil the win and a place in the 2003 Gold Cup final (where they lost to Mexico in Mexico City).

Here was the USA lineup on that day:

———–Landon Donovan——Clint Mathis——————–

Eddie Lewis————Claudio Reyna———–Earnie Stewart

————————Pablo Mastroeni————————–

Bobby Convey—-Bocanegra——Gibbs——-Frankie Hejduk

——————————-Keller—————————–

Carlos Bocanegra scored the U.S. goal that day, heading home a perfect long pass from Reyna. Brian McBride replaced Mathis just 30 minutes into this match. Richard Mulrooney and Beasley also played as subs.

Coincidentally, Brazil has four players starting today who played in that match. Kaka, Robinho, Maicon and Luisao.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Since we went back in time to reveal that 1998 USA lineup that beat Brazil, it would only be fair to look at the 2003 Confederations Cup squad that lost to Brazil, 1-0, on June 21, 2003:

———–Landon Donovan——Clint Mathis————-

Beasley—————-Earnie Stewart—————Chris Klein

————————Pablo Mastroeni————————–

Cory Gibbs—-Bocanegra——Gregg Berhalter—Cherundolo

————————–Tim Howard—————————–

Bobby Convey replaced Gibbs, Taylor Twellman replaced Mastroeni and Eddie Lewis replaced Chris Klein as subs that day.

For those who don't remember, Tim Howard played a solid game in goal and only an Adriano goal on a breakaway after a Berhalter turnover kept the USA from scoring at least a draw that day.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Keys to the game today for the U.S. team?

  • Clean defending in the final third (ie, NO FREE KICKS 30 yards and in).

  • Keep bodies around Kaka, Brazil's lead playmaker.

  • Be smart with the ball (as in no unforced turnovers to spark Brazil counterattacks)

  • Feed Donovan and Dempsey the ball early and often (and let them create and go at Brazil's defense, which can be beaten).

There are plenty of other things the U.S. team needs to focus on and do well today, these are just some that came to mind.

The Americans will miss Michael Bradley today, especially with regard to dealing with Kaka. On top of having a tireless work ethic and impressive work rate, Bradley reads the game well and keeps himself in good positions to help neutralize opposing team's top playmakers. It will be up to Clark and Feilhaber to not give Kaka too much space and a chance to run at the U.S. defense.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Speaking of Larrionda, I can't help but wonder where he stacks up in the pantheon of referees most hated by U.S. national team fans. Let's have a quick vote:

———————–

PRE-GAME– Regarding the Bradley-Larrionda post-game confrontation story, what I've heard is that Bradley directed some comments toward Larrionda after the match but that reports that he had to be restrained and kept from attacking Larrionda are grossly inaccurate.

Sports Illustrated's Grant Wahl has confirmed that FIFA is investigating the matter. What that means exactly remains to be seen, but at the very least it appears that any potential suspension would not affect Bradley's availability vs. Mexico on Aug. 12.)

———————–

PRE-GAME– The only difference between this Brazil lineup and the one that beat USA 3-0 is giant centerback Luisao starts in place of Miranda. 

———————–

PRE-GAME– Here is Brazil's lineup:

———-Robinho———Fabiano————-

—–Kaka————————–Ramires—–

——–Felipe Melo——Gilberto Silva——–

Santos—–Lucio———-Luisao——-Maicon

——————Julio Cesar——————–

No surprises from Dunga and the Brazilians either.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Here is the USA Lineup (according to FIFA):

————–Altidore———–Davies————-

Donovan———————————-Dempsey

—————-Clark——–Feilhaber————–

Bocanegra—-Onyewu—–DeMerit——-Spector

———————-Howard————————

Yep, it's the lineup we were all expecting (and most were praying for).

———————–

PRE-GAME– We can start dissecting the match as soon as the lineups are revealed. For now, let's discuss favorite Michael Jackson songs. Just kidding.

If you're Brazil do you start Maicon, Dani Alves or both?

———————–

PRE-GAME– What did you think of that '98 lineup? Find it funny that three of the four starting defenders either are or were MLS general manager/technical directors? Eddie Pope can't feel too left out. He now works for the MLS Players Union.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Waiting on lineups, any minute now.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Thanks to BB for reminding me that Landon Donovan and Lucio were just teammates four months ago during Donovan's brief loan with Bayern Munich? How could I forget that? Admit it, you forgot (or erased that from your memory) too.

———————–

PRE-GAME– As you have surely heard by now, the U.S. national team boasts one win vs. Brazil all-time, that win came on Feb. 10, 1998 in a game forever remembered for Kasey Keller's amazing performance and Preki's game-winning goal. Have you been left wondering who was in the lineup that day for the United States? Wonder no more:

—————-Eric Wynalda——–Joe-Max Moore—————

Cobi Jones——John Harkes—Roy Wegerle—-Frankie Hejduk

Jeff Agoos——Eddie Pope——Alexi Lalas——–Mike Burns

—————————Kasey Keller—————————–

Preki replaced Wegerle and Brian McBride replaced Wynalda on that day.

And yes, both John Harkes and Alexi Lalas were in the starting lineup that day. So you will hear at least 1,000 anectdotes about that match on the ESPN broadcast (as you should).

———————–

PRE-GAME– Answers? For the first part, the answer is Freddy Adu and Luisao. That was a bit of a trick question because some of you may have thought it was Adu and Ramires. The Ramires transfer to Benfica doesn't take effect until the opening of the transfer window, on July 1st.

The second part actually has two three answers: Tim Howard and Kleberson AND DaMarcus Beasley and Heurelho Gomes. Howard and Kleberson were teammates with Manchester United from 2003 to 2005. They came in together in the same Manchester United transfer class that included some kid named Cristiano Ronaldo. Beasley and Gomes were teammates with PSV Eindhoven during Beasley's entire three-year stint at PSV from 2004 to 2007. Lastly, Landon Donovan and Lucio were teammates for three months at Bayern Munich this past winter during Donovan's brief loan spell.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Pop Quiz: Who are the only current set of club teammates who will stand opposed to each other in the Brazil-USA final? And a Part Two: Aside from the aforementioned set of club teammates, who are the only other American and Brazilian players to have been club teammates before?

———————–

PRE-GAME– Pop Quiz answer: Clint Dempsey. Okay, so that wasn't THAT tough a question. I just found it very interesting as I was looking back at some results. Dempsey has scored goals against Brazil, Spain and England AND has scored in a World Cup. Not bad. 

———————–

PRE-GAME– In case you missed it, here is a USSoccer.com interview with Benny Feilhaber.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Pop Quiz: Who is the only player in U.S. national team history to score goals against Brazil, England and Spain?

———————–

PRE-GAME– No, we don't have the lineups yet, so no, we don't know for sure that Feilhaber is starting, but it seems like a safe bet. That said, don't be surprised if the starting lineup isn't the starting XI we've all assumed it would be. It has been a long tournament and fatigue could play a part in Bob Bradley's final lineup decisions.

———————–

PRE-GAME– The answer to the quiz question? July 2, 2007 vs. Paraguay in Copa America. That was the last time Benny Feilhaber and Ricardo Clark started together in the U.S. lineup in central midfield. That summer saw Feilhaber and Clark start together three times, the only three games they have ever started together with the national team. They started in a 2-0 Gold Cup win vs. Trinidad & Tobago, a 4-1 loss to Argentina and 3-1 loss to Paraguay in Copa America. Clark scored the lone goal in that Paraguay match.

———————–

PRE-GAME– I'll come back to the quiz later.

For now, let's take a look at Brazil. You all know about Kaka, Robino, Julio Cesar, Maicon and Dani Alves, established European-based mega-stars. The team's rising stars are Felipe Melo and Ramires. Melo has been the best defensive midfielder in the tournament and is set to make a big-money move away from Fiorentina this summer. Ramires is a young midfielder who recently made a $10.5 million move to Benfica.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Pop quiz: When was the last time Benny Feilhaber and Ricardo Clark started together in central midfield for the U.S. national team?

———————–

PRE-GAME– We are still more than two hours away from today's final but it's never too early to start talking about the match, especially a match as big as tonight's. I will bring you the starting lineups as soon as they become available.

———————–

PRE-GAME– Swedish referee Martin Hannson is the referee today. He has no history of issuing red cards to U.S. national team players, so that's an upgrade.

———————–

Comments

  1. I don’t know about you guys, but seeing Dempsey bawling his eyes out and Donovan giving his exit interview with tears in his eyes got me choked up. It is a beautiful thing to see such deep passion from our guys.

    I think Donovan and Howard were our most effective players, while Spector claiming his spot in the defense came as the biggest suprise.

    Thank you, guys. You gave us hope and some of the best football played by a United States national team.

    We are so proud of you.

    Bring on South Africa ’10…

    Reply
  2. I still like Ching and Altidore, with Davies as a supersub, because I think Altidore can’t do what Ching does, at least not yet.

    Reply
  3. Have to agree with A.S.

    While I personally would have liked to see Torres instead of Sasha, guys critizing BB for his subs don’t know shite. He put the two on that had played in the tourney before. Bornstien was not out of place in mid for example.

    Bob did a great job in this tourney, and I’m sure he will use the lessons learned to improve potential showings in 2010. That’s what the US came here for.

    Great showing of heart & effort by the US players. Congratulations guys.

    Reply
  4. does brian ching still have a place in the starting lineup- I think Davies has more than earned a orle as a starting striker. brian ching as super sub! thoughts?

    Reply
  5. Maicon had more time in the corner than a Rio street walker. Boca and Donovan didn’t get it done and Bradley didn’t provide help at 2-0.

    Reply
  6. Rich, “Sacha did not do to badly but he looked too much down the middle and not to the wings enough. Bornstein did pretty well.”

    I watched a completely different game.

    Reply
  7. I am very proud of the team. I hope they now finally realize they can play with any team in the world if they attack and don’t sit back. I would hope that Bob Bradley would learn the same thing, but I am past the point of thinking the guy is going to try and learn anything new. I like the man, but he’s just a little too stubborn for my liking.

    It stings to come so close and not win, and I love that Dempsey was so shaken up after…the guy showed heart and at least you knew it meant a lot to him.

    The future is bright and this tournament has given me some renewed hope that I was losing. Bravo fellas, you made the USA proud.

    Reply
  8. Loved our team. I didn’t know Davies before this tournament. Bradley, Dempsey, Donovan, Spector, Demerit, Gooch, Bocanegra. Great. I’m sure I left some out.

    But this wasn’t bad luck. Brazil was superior.

    I was happy to see Donovan and Dempey Crying, Not because we lost, obviously, but because they REALLY GIVE A CRAP. HEART. We’ve been missing it. Its here. With more depth, who knows what we can do.

    At one point in this tournament I didn’t even want us to qualify for the world cup, so that I could avoid the overwhelming disappointment. They really showed they are worthy. but they are still not Brazil.

    If we can stop the crap red cards, 2010 will be a awesome.

    Reply
  9. Player that impressed the most? Spector. He was brilliant and will give Dolo a run for his money for the spot.

    Player that surprised the most? I think it was Demerit stepping up. He has definately had his ups and downs at Watford and I was so impressed.

    I am feeling better about the USA chances. they will now have the confidence that they can beat the best in the world and hopefully we will have additional players strengthening the squad.

    Reply
  10. “I don’t like Sacha or Bornstein against Brazil but we really didn’t have that much of a bench to choose from, let’s be honest.”
    Posted by: Memrook

    Of course this only makes sense if someone other than Bradley had selected Sacha, Bornstein, Beasley, etal. Since Bradley made both the selections and subs, memrook’s comment is silly, let’s be honest, nonsense.

    Reply
  11. WOW

    What a first half!

    Still we just do not have the horese to compete with Brazil.

    Once the presure was being applied I was trying to who you bring on, but I could not come up with the names.

    BB obviously does nto trust Toores or Adu to be on the field, but goes with Sacha and Bornstein?

    Sacha did not do to badly but he looked too much down the middle and not to the wings enough. Bornstein did pretty well. But if you are not going to bring on Adu, how are you going to find the spark? Maybe he was waiting to let him do his thing in the Gold Cup.

    I do struggle with the roster however. If you are not going to play Torres and Adu why did you bring them? To get atmosphere?

    Still in all. Once the first half ended, I really did not care what the final was. i have always just asked that we compete, AND THAT WE DID!!!

    We came out winners regardless of the final score!!!

    Reply
  12. You know the saying…’keep your friends close, and your enemies even closer’…
    If Bob Bradley would have studied how Mexico kept a 1-0 lead through most of the match against Brazil to win in the last Confederations Cup he might have learned something!
    Only two teams in the world consistently beat Brazil, they are, France and Mexico!

    Reply
  13. It is hilarious that these comments are making me defend Bob Bradley – I don’t even like him (or his son) really! But, I mean, come on: it is ridiculous to blame a close loss to f*%&ing Brazil on him.

    We gave this game our all, and came damned close. The difference was that we didn’t have anybody on the bench to bring in to defend a 2-1 lead. It is where the loss of a Mo Edu really, really hurts.

    Reply
  14. The reason we are all so angry is because we came so close. If those subs would have came in helped us win we would all be celebrating without question. This hurts so much because we were minutes away from wining the cup, and to me it is just not fair. We all know that soccer isn’t always fair (most of the red cards we received), but that is the way it goes. I could go on and on about how Bob Bradley costs us this game but the truth is that we don’t have all the facts so we can not assume that we know better than a coach that led us to the final (regardless of luck, and decisions). I just want to say that I am proud of our team and how much heart they played with, and I hope they can take this heart-breaking experience and become hungrier than ever to win every game and every tournament that we are a part of. Did you see Clint after the game? his emotion says everything that I can not put into words.

    Congratulations to our US team, which in my opinion, showed they had the heart of a champion no matter the final score.

    Reply
  15. It was a great tournament and they showed a lot of heart but I am still going to question the coaching. Why did you pull off two offensive players when Brazil tied the game for two defensive players? I just do not understand. Lastly, where was the defender on the back post on Lucio’s game winner? The ball would have hit that individual if there was someone there. This is just fundamentals. At the end of the day, Brazil is deeper than us and it showed. Overall, it was a great team effort.

    Reply
  16. I was impressed by the play of the entire Defense, Howard Donovan, Bradley, pretty much everyone except for Kleijekstan (sp?), Beasley and I was a little disappointed in Fielhaber today.

    Also Bradley’s substitutions left a lot to be desired, esp today.

    Reply
  17. “Yeah, cause that’s the same scenario that’s causing the criticism now.”

    Yup. The comments will be filled with brilliant insights like ‘Fire Bob Bradley – he should have told Howard to dive left instead of right.’

    Reply
  18. Great game. It was Brazil after all. Dempsey and Donovan were all over, attacking, defending, sacrificing their bodies, making plays. Great hustle. Can’t wait until Azteca

    Reply
  19. I am very proud of this team. It’s an extremely tough loss, but I hope they can take this wonderful experience to do well in the rest of WCQ, and then to SA 2010!

    Reply
  20. “I can see it next year: USA gets to the Final game of the WC, beating Argentina, Holland, Spain and England. USA loses in PKs to Brazil. Moronic SBI commenters blame Bob Bradley for PK loss.”

    Yeah, cause that’s the same scenario that’s causing the criticism now.

    Reply
  21. Great effort by the team. Tough result to swallow because we had them. Two mistakes by Bradley, subbing in too late, and then subbing in the wrong guys!

    Reply
  22. The lingering feeling from the past two weeks is that SA2010 is going to be wide open. I wouldn’t be too surprised to see a team from outside of UEFA + CONMEBOL make the final.

    Reply
  23. I can see it next year: USA gets to the Final game of the WC, beating Argentina, Holland, Spain and England. USA loses in PKs to Brazil. Moronic SBI commenters blame Bob Bradley for PK loss.

    Reply
  24. People are giving BB too much credit for the job the fellas did on the field. Think about it. The coach picks the players, they play…The guys on the field, even the crappy ones need not lower their heads. The coach really needs to think about this tourny and the results of His actions, or lack there of.

    Reply
  25. I feel that giving up that first goal sooo early in the second half wounded us. MORE IMPORTANTLY, I FEEL THE U.S. SUBS NEEDED TO COME ABOUT 5 MINUTES EARLIER. This could have helped on the second goal. THIS I BLAME ON BRADLEY. Lastly, where was the player on the post in the third goal?

    In the end, we turned things around (coaches and players) and we will use this as a learning experience. We know the players learned. Let’s hope the coach did too.

    Reply
  26. I am proud of our team, and I can’t complain about BB – when you don’t have the talent of the competition you have to play a smarter game, and for the last 3 games we did. He made a strategic decision to give them the wings because we know we would be overrun in the center of the pitch. Yeah maybe he could have subbed sooner or differently, but he didn’t have much to work with. Adu – he doesn’t play defense and isn’t too fast, torres, maybe he should have gotten more time, but I can’t complain. We just gave a hell of a game to a team with the most talented players in the world, and yes I am including Spain.

    We grew as a team we improved our speed of play and showed better organization than we ever had before. I think the Confederations Cup was an unqualified success for the Nats. With a little more depth in the midfield it would have been our game – jones, edu, bradley – we are only going to get better

    Reply
  27. BTW, I am being sarcastic. We need to be proud of our national team for an incredible effort against a great world power.

    Reply
  28. Wow. We lose to the probable new number one team in the world, a team with the more talented players, a country with arguably the most storied team in the world, and some fans want BB to be fired. Makes sense.

    Anyways, great game by the Yanks. I really can not complain at this wonderful effort by our national team. They did us proud.

    Reply
  29. The US had a wonderful tourney, but in all honesty…A SUPER LUCKY ONE!!!
    I’m still amazed that some so-called fans, demand that the team win the World Cup NOW!
    Those fans are delirious!
    They probably have never heard of Holland (as I prefer to call them), who invented modern football, and have been waiting fifty years to win it! Or Spain, Chile and Paraguay, Czech Republic, Peru, Mexico, Colombia, Russia etc. who all have a much older soccer tradition and culture than ours, and also want to win it…who doesn’t!
    Today if it weren’t for amazing good luck, Tim Howard, a goal for Brazil that everyone saw except the ref, and again lots of luck it would have been much worse!
    But the overall performance of the team was the best one yet!

    Reply
  30. bradley needs to learn how to sub. should have brought bornstein in 5 minutes earlier.

    Posted by: scott | June 28, 2009 at 04:39 PM

    Way to appreciate your teams effort.

    Reply
  31. this will now be a 30 second piece on sportscenter as opposed to lots of coverage. i despise bradley but getting us within a goal of winning this thing is pretty impressive, hopefully he learns that you can use subs before the 70th minute,

    Reply
  32. Look, we lost because Brazil is an amazing talented team that outskills us in almost every position.
    that being said – Bob Bradley is out of his depth at this level of competition. He managed a double whammy -the exactly wrong subs at the wrong time. Seriously, did any of his subs have anything positive? Not a single thing. It is very frustrating. The US needs to have everything fall right to win a game like that, we cant afford a coach who cannot as has not dictated the terms of the game. The Bradley m.o. is always to react, always five minutes too late, and mostly with the wrong people that he feels comfortable with.
    I see out teams future, and it is Altidore, Davies, Landon, Clint, Bradley, Jermaine Jines or Edu, Gooch, Demeritt, Spector, and Cherondolo,

    Reply
  33. Why on ESPN360.com, do we have to listen to some xenophobic, soccer-hating idiot talking about how boring and un-American soccer is as soon as the Confederations Cup is over? Go f$@k yourself whoever you are. Dealing with the European haters is enough. I can’t wait until some other station buys on ESPN. I’ll watch on Univision from now on.

    Reply
  34. Michael Bradley’s loss was certainly felt. Benny played great in substitution for him – especially defensively. But we needed the depth of bringing Benny off the bench, and we just didn’t have that depth.

    Reply
  35. Well Aquaman and some others, I think in theory you’re absolutey right about that. But we’re not there every day with the team. And let’s not forget, BB isn’t the only manager with a history of Adu and not using him. I’m not saying anything about Adu ‘cuz I personally love Adu and Torres also. But in hindsight of course it’s easy to talk trash. If we had mustered an equalizer (like we almost did when Gooch scored on the header in the last minute) then would we be so disappointed? My point is, we don’t know all the variables. BB does. Obviously they didn’t seem the best, but we’ll probably never, ever know why.

    Reply
  36. I know that the card to MB was a big issue. Now we get to question the ability of BB to have a disciplined team as well…I hate to say this but “it’s time to part ways”. There are better options for the US in a coach.

    Reply
  37. It isnt wrong to be pissed about this and pissed about Bob Bradley. If he makes a crappy decision, heck yes we should skewer him for it. I’m only gonna be happy with a loss when we truly played our best the whole game……we only did for half a game because we were gassed and were given the worst friggin subs possible.

    Reply
  38. Well, at least we know no other coach can counter BB superior tactical strategy. Who would expect to see the exact same strategy and subs so many games in a row against different opponents. If I was the opposing coach, I would have been clueless. I would never want my opponents to sit back and let my team pound at them all game long. But seriously talent trumps heart every time, especially when your opponent has both. I realize some players were missing but @#%# happens. Leading up to the World Cup @#$@ can happen again. Which in turn means that we need a coach who can manage a game and not just say, ugh guys I need you to play really really hard and have a lot of heart. Losing a 2-0 lead is inexcusable no matter who you are playing.

    Reply

Leave a Comment