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Afternoon Ticker: Bradley to coach vs. Brazil, Ronaldinho injured and more


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Bob Bradley's long-term future as head coach of the U.S. national team might be uncertain, but what is known is that he'll coach at least one more game.

Bradley will coach the United States in the team's first post-World Cup friendly against Brazil on Aug. 10, USSF confirmed to SBI. The match at the new Meadowlands Stadium will mark the fourth time Bradley coaches against the Selecao.

Bradley is expected to announce his roster for the match sometime next week.

Here are more stories from Thursday:

Ronaldinho sidelined a month

Ronaldinho will miss a month of action after picking up a muscle injury in training on Wednesday. Ronaldino will undergo medical tests to determine the extent of the injury, but the knock is believed to be severe enough to force him to miss AC Milan's season opener against Lecce on Aug. 29.

Maradona hits out at AFA

You just knew Diego Maradona would not go away quietly.

Maradona hit out at the Argentina Football Association, with federation president Julio Grondona and director of national teams Carlos Bilardo the main culprits. 

Maradona said he was told by Grondona that he had done a good job at the World Cup following the elimination loss to Germany, but that the federation president's tone changed in their meeting earlier this week. In the meeting Grondona told Maradona he would need to let go of some of his assistants if he wanted to remain as coach, something Maradona was not willing to do.

U-17 D.C. United wins SUM Cup

D.C. United goalkeeper Dakota Niedermeier put forth a brilliant performance as the club won its third SUM U-17 Cup title in four years with a 5-4 shootout win over Real Salt Lake. After a scoreless draw, Niedermeier came up big during the shootout, stopping five straight penalty kicks before converting the game-winner in the ninth round.


Happy to know Bradley will be coaching against Brazil? How badly will Ronaldinho be missed if he is out an extended period of time? Feel Maradona was betrayed by Grondona and Bilardo? Impressed by Niedermeier's performance?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Ah yes, now we’re back to capping any warm body with a US passport that has even the slightest association with a european football team.

    Lletget has yet to secure a place in the West Ham first team, Lichaj has 0, repeat ZERO appearances for the Aston Villa first team and the only people who care about him are US fans on the internet, Grella was limited to late sub appearances in the second half of Leeds season last year in League One.

    But of course they are in Europe so they have to be better than anyone in the MLS like maybe Ream or Omar Gonzales?

    So Aubie what about Jeremiah White?

  2. This is ridiculous. Clark’s mistake did not cause that first goal.

    See the replay:

    1. Bradley gives Clark the ball at the center circle. The way it is done puts Clark in an awkward postion while Boateng is standing there watching the whole thing. It’s not unlike a QB botching a handoff to a RB.

    2. Clark screws it up worse by losing the ball to Boateng.

    3. Demerit who has been watching the whole thing, actually runs away from Boateng but then gets back towards him but is too late to do more than help screen Boteng’s shot on goal.

    4. Howard, how has obviously been catching up on his e mail while all this was going on, lets Boatengs shot past him into the near post.

    Clark didn’t turn over the ball in the penalty box he lost it at the halfway line. Bradley, Clark, Demerit and Howard all screwed up on the play.

    But the final mistake belongs to Howard because even though he was partially screened, his positioning was garbage and he let in a soft goal at the near post.

    If Bradley is to blame for this it’s because he didn’t beg Friedel to come out of retirment so that we would have had a real keeper instead of some daydreaming poser.

    With Freidel, maybe we’re in the semis.

  3. “Everyone else cans their coach routinely after the Cup to refresh the schemes, vary the formations and training regimens, etc.

    But we should stick with the same guy for four more years – becuase why? Because he wasn’t terrible? So what.

    Last time we gave a coach an extra cycle – Bruce Arena – that worked out so well in 2006 didn’t it. ”

    You know why few national team coaches stick around more than one cycle? Because the job does not pay that well and the conditions are usually terrible, lots of interference etc. And they are stuck with the existing player pools. SAF used to bring in British youth players from his system or the lower divisions. Now United bring in youth from all over the world. The best gigs are the club ones.

    The best managers use the job either as a springboard to a better paying club gig or as one last deal before retirement.

    You look at BB’s tenure in terms of years. I look at it in terms of games.

    Bradley has coached about 70 USMNT games since he started. That’s about one season and change for Alex Ferguson or any top half EPL manager. You could say he has just completed the equivalent of one season.And anyone who says this season was a failure is wildy unrealistic.

    Signing him for one more cycle would give him the time to actually do something with all that experience.

    You want to bring in Klinsman? He’d be an idiot to take Bradley’s job as it is presently constructed because he won’t be able to do a whole lot more with it. Tell me that the few weeks a year Klinsi would spend with Jozy would turn Jozy into a killer scoring machine. What a crock.

    I’d bring in Klinsman as a replacement for Gulati and let him work on altering the entire struture of the USSF. Then ultimately BB or whoever is the coach would actually have suitable players to win the Cup in 2018 or 2022.

    Why screw around? That’s a job Klinsmann would take and could make a real difference in.

  4. Act like a normal program? After following the exploits of many national associations and their coaches, I don’t know what that even means.

  5. “an experienced coach who has been there himself (as a world class player) like Klinsmann who can possibly give some different tactics or insights, and work with the younger players to make a difference.”

    Maradona was a greater player than Klinsman and we can all see what a great manager he is. History is full of great players who were average to crap managers (Maradona, Van Basten, Bryan Robson) and great managers who were average to crap players (Arena, Bert Van Marwijk, Alex Ferguson.

    The US’ problem is the players aren’t good enough. The 23 who went to SA were the best available. We lost the Ghana game in great part because even though we had plenty of chances in the second half we simply could not score and because Howard, let us down by letting in one very soft crap goal ( which was not just Clark’s fault; watch the replay again) and by being out of position in the second goal. If he is the superman everyone says he is then he should have cut out that second goal. Everyone talks about our crap defense but forget that the goalkeeper, especially a vet like Howard, is a very big part, if not the leader of that defense.

    How is Klinsman going to make Howard, who has tendency to lose concentration, a better keeper other than by cutting him? If you must blame one player for losing that game Howard is the one.

    “Why go with the same thing we have already done over and over? (The definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over expecting different results.)”

    I’ll tell you what is insane; thinking that changing the manager is going to make a difference if the same players are still around. There is no evidence that these 23 haven’t maximized their talent. The US was the 16th best team in the completion and had a good shot t being in the final 8.

    Yet , where are all the big money transfers dying to snap up our talented players? You do realize the only US player, other than Gooch, who may be pasted to the Milan bench, likely to get regular Champions league football this year is Sacha and he wasn’t even on the squad? This is a good thing because all of you would have blasted BB for favoritism.

  6. If we had same team in Confed cup dude we could have beat Ghana.
    That wasn’t possible unless you believe Davies was ready. Then there’s the issues with Onyewu. Finally, the center midfield was Clark and Feilhaber.

  7. Bradley had his time and he should be thanked for it. But, now it’s time for someone else to take up the chanllenge and move this team to the next level. To do so, how about Klinsmann? He has the right experience and timing would be just right. Bradley’s contract ends at the end of the year and Klinsmann could jump right in and take over the team.

  8. Folks, Bradley’s fatal fallacy can be summed up as follows: he overthinks things and ultimately fails, time and again, to put his 11 best players on the field. Everyone knows we aren’t a very deep team – but that’s why we make sure we’re the fittest team every time we take the pitch. That’s how MB 4 is still outrunning practically everyone out there in the 90th minute. Bradley never seemed to get this. He instead labored over details – e.g. putting in Findley to supposedly stretch the defense; starting Clark to have “fresh legs”; mixing up midfield combinations based on perceived strategic advantages relative to the opposition’s playing style – and overlooked the simple facts that were staring him, and everyone else, directly in the face. In this case, the simple facts were that (1) Findley, while undeniably fast, had no business being on the same field as his competition, and lacked the skill and experience needed to make any kind of difference on the field; (2) the Edu-Bradley combo was the obvious and proven MF pairing to start against Ghanap; and (3) the lineup he had used against Alegeria in the previous match was the only time the team had (a) not given up a goal, (b) controlled the entire game, and (c) actually WON a game in the WC.

    Instead, BB tinkers constantly with his lineups in every game – and in every game, is forced to make changes that basically acknowledge and validate what every tv viewing fan in the world already knew before the match. Look, I’m impressed by some of what our guys did out there, but he fact is they were seconds away from not even advancing – which everyone including the USSF had agreed would be an abject failure. So how exactly does the coach of a team that came so perilously close to utter failure get so much credit? I think it’s time to thank BB for his contributions to this leg of our development, and move on with a different coach with the tools and experience to bring us to the next level. I think that part of why BB lacks those tools is that he himself has never played professional soccer – much less on any kind of international level. We need someone who has been there – and someone who can show our guys how to play well, and have fun. Aside from when they’ve scored that last-gasp goal, again, to secure a miracle draw or last second-victory, has it ever looked like our guys are enjoying themselves out there? I believe that tentativeness also is a product of Bob. Another reason he needs to move on.

  9. Breaking into the first team pool is good for Lleget and quite an accomplishment but don’t break out the hype machine and anoint him as the next saviour of US soccer just yet.

    For one thing he may never play for the USMNT.

    So dial all this hype back a notch and let the kid grow up and learn his trade.

  10. There is no “Danish Division Three” per se. The third level of Danish football would be two Divisions, Second Divison west and Second Division east.

    I’m not aware of any Americans playing in thoswe divisions ( 16 clubs each).

  11. It’s not surprising that Brazil wasted no time after Dunga quit in naming a new coach. They have a young squad that want to shine for their new coach. I hope it’s the same for the US selection despite their experience but the energy with Bradley will be lacking because there’s a good chance this could be his last game. If most of the WC players are chosen it could be even worse because they know they’re in the mix for future qualifying and are getting ready to start their club seasons. I have a feeling the Brazileros are coming to come out swinging.

  12. +1 to Warren. Given his lineup selections, Bradley may know the player pool, but still makes some questionable decisions. Like starting Clark and Findley in the Ghana game.

  13. You obviously have never heard of google. READ!! Sebastian Lleget is on the verge of breaking into the first team at West Ham, at the ripe old age of 17 YEARS OLD!! The kid is for real.

  14. Oh you classifiers… assigning folk to simple groups, matching the simplicity of your tired parrot criticicms. You’re going to miss this golden age of USMNT when it’s gone.

  15. -1

    USMNT and USSF need to grow up and act like a normal program and find a new coach who can take a fresh eye to the (emerging) talent pool especially

  16. I’m so tired of people arguing for American exceptionalism.

    Everyone else cans their coach routinely after the Cup to refresh the schemes, vary the formations and training regimens, etc.

    But we should stick with the same guy for four more years – becuase why? Because he wasn’t terrible? So what.

    Last time we gave a coach an extra cycle – Bruce Arena – that worked out so well in 2006 didn’t it.

    It’s not being a hater, though yeah slander folks ewho disagree with you becuase they wish – for the us to act like a normal middling soccer power and get a new coach?

  17. -100

    Bob had his shot, bravo, pat on the back and all that. We could dissect his miscues but now isn;t time

    Another 4 years is stagnation; thanks but no thanks.

  18. The HDC does not lend itself to USMNT WCQs for several reasons. First, all the predominantly Latino teams that reach the Hex, i.e., Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador (and even Costa Rica, which has fewer expatriates in So. Calif. than the other teams) would have a huge fan advantage over the U.S., thus nullifying one of the important prerequisites for a WCQ venue, and making those games non-starters at HDC.

    Second, as for the non-Latino nations, such as T&T and Jamaica, L.A. fans have not proven that they would come out in sufficient numbers to passionately support the Red, White and Blue. That’s not to say that there are no patriotic U.S. fans in L.A. Just less than in heartland cities like Columbus. And L.A. fans are notoriously laid-back (perhaps only the Laker fans have some passion; Dodger fans, while supporting their team in numbers tend to arrive in the 3rd inning and leave by the 7th), not what you want in supporting the USMNT.


  19. Next coach is going to need to perform a miracle with the player pool for defenders and strikers. Who knows that player pool better than Bradley does?

  20. Always room for more converts in this sport. And I agree with you on the phantom rift issue. Clint’s grown boat loads since his move to FFC, he’s a pro and I would imagine he and Bellamy would probably be friends as opposed to enemies. The Whites draw a ton of strength from the team mentality and any new coach needs to be very mindful of introducing new elements into that locker room.

    Of course, I always want Deuce to carry that chip on his shoulder, its what drives him to play harder every time he steps out.

  21. Consider me educated. Soccer convert after the 2006 Cup.

    It was four years ago. This speculation about a potential rift between two teammates that aren’t even teammates yet is ridiculous though.

  22. Can’t say I agree with that. I’ve never seen any reports of Clint not getting along with teammates. Nor have I seen reports of Bellamy falling out with teammates, other than the well known incidents with Shearer and Riise.

    He clashes with management (Souness, Mancini a little, even Zola a little), but loves Hughes apparently.

  23. Matt, no I think people are saying you have an experienced coach who has been there himself (as a world class player) like Klinsmann who can possibly give some different tactics or insights, and work with the younger players to make a difference. Why not try it? Why go with the same thing we have already done over and over? (The definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over expecting different results.)

  24. Have sarcasm detectors been eliminated at this blog? People thought I was serious that the upcoming Brazil squad was pathetic because they had too many domestic-based players.

  25. oh you bob lovers. depth had nothing to do with him starting findley and clark again and again and again….he’s not good enough. hell he isnt even the best american coach out there.

  26. This is incredibly off topic, but can anyone explain why the Home Depot Center never got more than one World Cup Qualifier? Is it because they get the yearly January friendly every year or do they just think there are better venues?

  27. Thanks for the props. I assume you intended to add the word “always” between “Quakeland” and “provide”. 😉

    Actually, you raised an important point that I nearly included. Bob’s “having faith” cuts both ways. The loyalty he shows is part of what builds the incredible team spirit he gets out of them AND sometimes it is rewarded. I think Bornstein for one repaid his faith during the WC. i think Dempsey did as well – he was great in SA but turned in a lot of tired perfromances over the last year plus.

    By the same token, he does hold guys accountable, yet gives them the opportutniy to build their way back. Fielhaber did, Beasley did and Kjlestan NEARLY did. If we had a pool that was 75 players deep, you can be more ruthless. But we don’t. The faith Bob shows has been rewarded probably more often than not.

  28. The fact of the matter is we had a golden opportunity to advance to the quarters, regardless of our talent pool. His lineup selection throughout qualifiers and the world cup was not up to snuff. Starting an out of form Findley 3 out of 4, an out of place Rico 2 out of 4 cost us. Just don’t understand an in form Buddle on the bench. If Findley didn’t pick up two yellows he would have started every game despite not bringing much to the table aside from his speed. How hard is that to recognize?? He is not the answer to move us forward into the next cycle and world cup.


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