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Americans Abroad: Weekend Rewind

Michael Bradley 6 (Getty Images)  


Michael Bradley's new season could not have started any better.

Against second division club FC Erzgebirge Aue in the first round of the DFB Pokal, Bradley scored the opener for Borussia Moenchengladbach, netting with a sliding finish. The goal helped pave the way for a 3-1 Moenchengladbach victory.

Stuart Holden's Premier League season got off to a good start as he played 90 minutes in Bolton's season-opening draw against Fulham. World Cup teammate Clint Dempsey came off the bench for the Cottagers. Young American Conor Doyle also saw playing time this weekend as he made his Championship debut in Derby County's 2-1 defeat against Cardiff City.

Herculez Gomez didn't find the back of the net, but he was partially responsible for Pachuca's lone goal in its 4-1 loss to Cruz Azul. Gomez came off the bench in the second half and drew a penalty kick after his left leg appeared to be kicked just inside the area. Teammate Jose Torres also played in the loss, returning from injury to go the full distance.

Here is how the Americans Abroad fared this weekend:



  • Tim Howard started and played 90 minutes in Everton's 1-0 loss vs. Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
  • Clint Dempsey came off the bench and played 15 minutes in Fulham's 0-0 draw vs. Bolton Wanderers on Saturday.
  • Eddie Johnson did not dress in Fulham's 0-0 draw vs. Bolton Wanderers on Saturday.
  • Brad Friedel started, played 90 minutes and made one save in Aston Villa's 3-0 win vs. West Ham United on Saturday.
  • Brad Guzan dressed but did not play in Aston Villa's 3-0 win vs. West Ham United on Saturday.
  • Eric Lichaj dressed but did not play in Aston Villa's 3-0 win vs. West Ham United on Saturday.
  • Marcus Hahnemann started, played 90 minutes and made three saves in Wolverhampton Wanderers' 2-1 win vs. Stoke City on Saturday.
  • Jonathan Spector dressed but did not play in West Ham United's 3-0 loss vs. Aston Villa on Saturday.
  • Stuart Holden started and played 90 minutes in Bolton Wanderers' 0-0 draw vs. Fulham on Saturday.


  • Mike Grella dressed but did not play in Leeds United's 1-1 draw vs. Nottingham Forest on Sunday.

  • Zak Whitbread did not dress in Norwich City's 1-0 win vs. Scunthorpe United on Saturday. He is recovering from a calf injury.

  • Conor Doyle came off the bench and played 20 minutes in Derby County's 2-1 loss vs. Cardiff City on Saturday.


  • Frank Simek started and played 90 minutes in Carlisle United's 1-1 draw vs. Plymouth Argyle on Saturday.

  • Anton Peterlin started and played 90 minutes in Plymouth Argyle's 1-1 draw vs. Carlisle United on Saturday.


  • Maurice Edu started and played 90 minutes in Rangers' 2-1 win vs. Kilmarnock on Saturday.
  • Dominic Cervi dressed but did not play in Celtic's 1-0 win vs. Inverness Caledonian Thistle on Saturday.



  • Steve Cherundolo started and played 120 minutes in Hannover 96's 5-4 penalty kick loss (0-0 draw) vs. SV 07 Elversberg in the first round of DFB Pokal on Saturday.
  • Michael Bradley started, played 89 minutes, received a yellow card and scored a GOAL in Borussia Moenchengladbach's 3-1 win vs. FC Erzgebirge Aue in the first round of DFB Pokal on Saturday.

  • Jermaine Jones and Schalke 04 play VfR Aalen in the first round of DFB Pokal on Monday.
  • Ricardo Clark dressed but did not play in Eintracht Frankfurt's 4-0 win vs. SV Wilhelmshaven in the first round of DFB Pokal on Friday.
  • Daniel Williams came off the bench and played 17 minutes in SC Freiburg's 1-0 win vs. FC Oberneuland 1948 in the first round of DFB Pokal on Saturday.


  • Kenny Cooper did not dress in TSV 1860 Munich's 2-1 win vs. SC Verl 1924 in the first round of DFB Pokal on Saturday. He is recovering from an ankle injury.
  • Matt Taylor did not dress in FSV Frankfurt's 2-0 win vs. SC Paderborn 07 in the first round of DFB Pokal on Friday.
  • David Yelldell started and played 90 minutes in MSV Duisburg's 2-0 win vs. VfB Lubeck in the first round of DFB Pojal on Friday. 
  • Luis Robles did not dress in Karlsruhe's 2-0 loss vs. FC Ingolstadt 04 in the first round of DFB Pokal on Friday.
  • Amaechi Igwe did not dress in FC Ingolstadt 04's 2-0 win vs. Karlsruhe in the first round of DFB Pokal on Friday. He is recovering from a knee injury.


  • Carlos Bocanegra did not dress in Saint Etienne's 3-2 win vs. Sochaux on Saturday.

  • Charlie Davies did not dress in Sochaux's 3-2 loss vs. Saint Etienne on Satuday.


  • Sacha Kljestan dressed but did not play in RSC Anderlecht's 4-0 win vs. Germinal Beerschot on Saturday.


  • Michael Parkhurst started and played 90 minutes in FC Nordsjaelland's 2-0 loss vs. FC Copenhagen on Saturday.

  • Marcus Tracy and Aalborg BK play FC Midtjylland on Monday.

  • Chris Rolfe and Aalborg BK play FC Midtjylland on Monday. He is recovering from a hamstring injury.


  • Alejandro Bedoya and Orebro SK play Mjallby on Monday.

  • Ryan Miller and Halmstads BK play Atvidabergs FF on Monday.


  • Clarence Goodson dressed but did not play in IK Start's 4-3 loss vs. Rosenborg in the NM Cup on Saturday.

  • Hunter Freeman did not dress in IK Start's 4-3 loss vs. Rosenborg in the NM Cup on Saturday.

  • Mikkel Diskerud and Stabaek did not play this weekend.

  • Steve Clark and Honefoss BK did not play this weekend.


  • Jose Torres started and played 90 minutes in Pachuca's 4-1 loss vs. Cruz Azul on Saturday.

  • Herculez Gomez came off the bench, played 38 minutes and drew a penalty kick in Pachuca's 4-1 loss vs. Cruz Azul on Saturday.

  • Marco Vidal did not dress in Pachuca's 4-1 loss vs. Cruz Azul on Saturday.

  • Edgar Castillo dressed but did not play in San Luis' 1-0 win vs. Morelia on Saturday.
  • Sammy Ochoa and Estudiantes Tecos U.A. de G. did not play this weekend.
  • Sonny Guadarrama did not dress in Atlante's 1-1 draw vs. Puebla on Sunday.


    What do you think of Bradley's goal? Impressed by Gomez's diving skills? Surprised Torres went the disance in his first game back from injury? How do you see Doyle faring this season?

    Share your thoughts below.


    1. “even with injury he had more minutes than Clark in the bundeliga.”

      Clark also had three games with Eintracht but what does Clark have to do with this? Holden and Clark are two different types of players.

      “I think Holden and Bradley should have been tried at the same time.”

      Since both of them play essentially the same role one of them will have to do something they aren’t all that good at. This would probably mean Bradley having to stay back more and that is not his best role. The whole idea of Jermaine Jones was to free Bradley going forward, something he is a proven quantity at doing well, far more so than Holden.

      Had you put Holden and Bradley together in central midfield for the World Cup, you would have been sacrificing Bradley’s offense, for Holden’s offense currently inferior to Michaels.

      And you would be sacrificing Edu’s defense and holding ability for Bradleys’s which I think is inferiors to Mo’s.

      Going forward, if Holden impresses on a consistent basis at Bolton and with new players and maybe a new manager things could change. As it was it made no sense to me to pair those two together in the middle leading up to the World Cup.

      You are trying to recreate the same basic dilemma England had with Lampard and Gerrard (cramming square pegs into round holes) and that has rarely worked well. I suspect our guys might be more coachable but Lampard and Gerrard are certainly much more accomplished than our two. Which is the only reason England managers have tried to play those two together.

    2. OK. An exaggeration, but even with injury he had more minutes than Clark in the bundeliga.

      Agreed that Bradley is quality and will be the midfield general for years to come.

      I think Holden and Bradley should have been tried at the same time. Again, all I’m saying is that there is evidence that putting Holden in the middle could have been the best combination and it was never tried.

      Why? Holden was still injured? Or Bradley again not discovering his best options.. unless they are forced on him due to injury.

    3. Isaac,

      This is what you wrote:

      “I’d like to see him move away from ‘Gladbach. Either a beter club in Germany, Italy or England. Blackpool were interested in him if I’m not mistaken, although they might have changed their minds after such a nice start to the EPL season.”

      From that sentence it sounds like you are saying Blackpool is a better club than BMG. True, you never actually said “Blackpool is a bettter club than BMG” but the way you wrote that sentence makes it easy to take that as your meaning.

      So cut Igor a break.

    4. “What makes it odd is that Holden had shown the ability in the EPL.. Not the MLS or on the bench in Germany, but as a starter.”

      That is an exaggeration.

      Holden is not a proven quantity at this level yet.

      He’s only had three games there in the EPL, while Michael Bradley has been doing it in Holland, Germany and for the USMNT for a few years now and he is two years younger than Holden. So Bradley seems like a better long term bet.

      I’m sure Holden will get his shot if he keeps playing well but it’s not surprising it wasn’t in South Africa.

    5. True.. Holden’s injury may have been hurting him June.

      However my point is that Bradley didn’t play Holden one minute in the middle. Not against Holland, not against Turkey not anytime. And the middle is clearly the area where the best combination was under constant debate. What makes it odd is that Holden had shown the ability in the EPL.. Not the MLS or on the bench in Germany, but as a starter.

      I’m still a fan of JFT, but I think Holden in that spot to start v Slovenia may have been a better option.

      Why not a 4 – 2 – 3 – 1.. with Holden in the middle of the three in front of MB and EDU. With LD and CD on the sides? Surely this should be tried.. perhaps exchanging Jones for EDU at this point.

    6. Basically, you said what I did, that playing Holden means you probably reduce Bradley or Donovan’s role in some fashion and I don’t see that Holden has proven enough to do that. a couple of games here and there for Bolton are not a big enough smaple size. Basically you are saying Bradley’s judgement is different from yours which is fine but kind of irrelevant.

      Granted I don’t follow Holden like you do but since the Gold Cup and the Mexico game, Holden has been pretty average for the US.

      I’m sure you blame Bradley for that but it doesn’t make it true.

      PLaying well for Bolton is one thing, fitting that into the US is another. Bradley is hardly the first national coach to have that problem.

    7. Bradley plays favorites and can’t adapt, he plays players til they fail at their position and ultimately cost us momentum. Clark failed, maurice edu was sub par as expected and was brought on as “fresh legs” when he had a lot of minutes in games previous to that. Benny comes on and shows what true fresh legs are.
      Everytime Holden has come on the field, hes the definition of fresh legs, he played 90 minutes during the friendly days before the WC,and if the excuse to put Edu on instead of Holden for clark is because Holden is still recovering from his injury, its an awful argument. He proved he was match fit,

      Lastly, if Bradley ACTUALLY did his homework, where you’re supposed to monitor and watch film on USMNT players to see how they are progressing, he would’ve seen Holden playing the best hes ever played in his Bolton debut against Tottenham and the game after that. All at the center mid position, having maybe ONE bad set piece which highlighted his performance during that game with the dangerous balls he produced.

      He got a contract extension right after proving himself during those games, then another one right after getting hurt because unlike Bob Bradley, Owen Coyle knows the game, knows talent and knows how to make players better.
      Why did I follow Holden more than edu or clark is because of the crazy upside hes shown and seeing if he could improve, which he has and will continue.

      Bob Bradley choked during the England game with not using any of his subs effectively, not going for the spark off the bench.

      sorry for that rant or whatever i just typed

    8. Not starting isn’t the problem. The problem is Hughes brought him on against Bolton to score late and he did not.

      Hughes wants to bring in Bellamy so Clint needs to impress Hughes quickly or get buried again. You don’t get a lot of chances in the EPL.

    9. “Theoretically at least one or 2 of those players should break through”

      You named six forwards. That’s not a lot of players. These guys look promising, by American standards, but that’s a very long way from “breaking through”, though you should probably define what that phrase means.

      To me it means become good enough to be a legitimate threat to score and play on a regular basis for a team that is playing in the World Cup or a top European league. I think US fans underestimate just how tough that is to do. I hope they do well but I would say the odds are against them.

    10. “Is anyone else wondering why Stu Holden didn’t get a shot in the center mid, either pre or during the WC?”

      In my case, no.

      What does he bring that others don’t have?

      In the Bolton game Holden’s role was sort of a hybrid of what Bradley and/or Dononvan (primarly dead balls) did for the US. So your idea would have M. Bradley and/or Donovan on the bench and Holden paired with Edu or some other defensive mid. I don’t see that happening. He could have been a bigger contributor to the US in roles other than the one you envision but:

      It’s mid-August and I have to think Holden’s leg feels a lot better than it did two months ago. Prior to this weekend’s game he’s had more time to practice with Bolton than he did with the US team leading up to the World Cup.

      Bolton are probably a bit better than the USMNT so Holden is getting better support than he might have in the World Cup.

    11. Hughes is courting Bellamy, a long time personal favorite of his and someone who just happens to be perfect if you want to reduce Dempsey’s playing time.

      Clint was brought on late against Bolton to generate offence and he didn’t really do that. So it looks like Clint will have his work cut out for him.

    12. When the HELL did I say that Blackpool is better than Gladbach?!?!?! WHEN??? Point it out to me please! I’m sorry, I didn’t!

      Reading comprehension. Jesus.

    13. For the record, LeToux has lived in the United States for nearly four years, has never played for France and has said publicly that he would like to play for the United States. I’m not judging his merits as a potential U.S. player, just pointing out that it is within the realm of possibility.

    14. relax man. I was just pointing out the difference in professional development between american kids and their contemporaries in another country.

    15. African countries have an agreement with Serie A? Seriously? Why don’t we have an agreement with the PL or Bundesliga or Scandinavian countries. We’re Americans. I mean honestly our players speak for themselves. Hard working and heavy force to be dealt with.

      USSF needs to pump millions more into soccer in this country. It’s the only way to make this nation a top10 by 2022. And yes it’s possible. Our league will probably be top 3 football leagues in the world outside Europe and arguably top10 football leagues in the world period. But starts with funding and promotion. Millions of kids play soccer. If they can see Donovan, Dempsey, Bradley, Howard, Altidore become stars, they will go with it. Maybe they won’t be getting $10million a year contracts, but $2 million ain’t out of the possibility.

      Hundreds of Yanks playing in Europe within a decade, even dozens at top Euro clubs. It’s possible alright

    16. According to an article a while back Daniel Williams coach has him training to Play Left Back….Wonder if that’s where he played this past weekend? If he did and develops into a legitimate option we could be looking at a something like….Spector/Lichaj/Alston (RB), Spector/Gooch/Goodson/Gonzalez/Gale/Ream (CB), Williams/Bornstein/Castillo (LB)….

      Much better better depth if they all continue to develop and/or stay healthy.

      Will be interesting to see who is picked for the U-23 Olympic qualifications…as it’ll be an indication of who’s Hopefully on the Horizon for the Senior US National Team.

      Ives any thought to an article/post on who’s likely to be called into the U-23 later this year?

    17. Omar Gonzalez but a lot of people don’t seem to have high projection for him although he has had a good career start.

      How about Greg Garza, left back in Portugal div2?

    18. And would you care to calculate how many professional appearances our 17-19 year-olds had in 1994? In 1998? In 2002? In 2006? In 2010? The number seems to be inching up steadily.

      This is called progress, and sometimes it is slow.

      So, you know, what have they ever done? More than any US cohort before them.

    19. Lot’s of “did not dress”. The beginning of the season is always weird as the managers juggle their lineup in search of the best squad. It seems Bob Bradley knew what he was doing when he didn’t select Charlie Davies for the World Cup.

    20. I think things have only recently begun to change with regards to what you’re speaking about. In some ways we suffer from the isolation that so many people revel in here.

      It’s really nice to have a passport that allows you to travel and work throughout Europe, undeniably the football powerhouse of the world at this time. It’s unfortunate that foreign scouts can’t see the legions of children here in order to handpick and deliver them to a fabulous football academy in the Netherlands.

      What we have to work with is a domestic league in its infancy. We have an uneasy football relationship with our neighbours to the south; most, if not all, of the American youth playing professionally in Mexico could choose to play for the Aztecs if they were so inclined.

      The best thing for us to do is what we’re doing: strengthen our domestic league by bringing in the Henry’s and Marquez’s. For the past 60 years, the defining attribute of every single World Cup winner, besides having world class players, are having players that come from a strong domestic league.

      Sure, Brazilian players today are world class. But what happens when you throw a Brazilian playing in Brazil with one playing in Italy with another playing in Spain with one playing in England?

      A whole bunch of nothing, that’s what.

    21. Is anyone else wondering why Stu Holden didn’t get a shot in the center mid, either pre or during the WC? He plays pretty well there. Certainly brings something the others don’t have.

      At the very least more mid on the wing pushing Dempsey up and in front of Benny..

    22. Crazy that conor kid played already.
      Good for him!

      maybe now people can get over the grella phase and move onto someone better…wish this kid luck

    23. Great post and an argument I’ve been trying to make for years.

      I think a big hurdle is the fact that our typical system is high school to college to profession – we’re really asking that you cut out the end of high school and by-pass college. Problem is, with MLS still handing out $40k salaries, parents aren’t likely to want their kid to pursue the sport.

      What needs to happen is investment in team academies so that they can bring in a larger pool and offer courses to get that high school degree within a soccer setting. Something like that Florida school offers.

    24. time for Bradley to transfer to middle of the table team in the EPL. continues his strong play from the World Cup and fits in perfectly with the English style of play. can only do so much for a team at the bottom of the table in Germany.

    25. I thought Holden was one of the best players in the game. He did look fatigued with 15 minutes left, though.

      Hit one of the post. Also, stole possession with a nasty tackle that nearly resulted in a goal.

    26. who said anything about stars? How about just players that are in their first teams that actively contribute? Those six players that Timothy named are our best and brightest kids at the forward position. Salgado and Agudelo are easily the youngest at 16 and 17. The rest are 18 and 19 (so get your facts right before you start complaining).

      Those six players have, between them, 25 professional appearances.

      For arguments sake, lets look at Croatia’s team for the 2010 UEFA under 19 championships.

      Average number of top flight, professional appearances among field players? 18.62. See the difference? Other countries are getting kids into the top flight way before we are and with way more kids.

      Look at kids like Ante Vukusic (Split) and Andrej Kramaric (Dinamo Zagreb). Both have already hit double digits in career goals with good clubs.

      Not saying anything crazy, but lets just consider that 17, 18 and 19 year olds in other nations are playing in champions league, and our best are getting loaned out to Harrisburg City Islanders (Jack Mac).

      We can complain about Bob Bradley till we are blue in the face. But THIS is what needs to change if we want to join the elite.

    27. Holden looked good at times; his shot towards the end missed by inches. Dempsey interjected a lot of energy at the end of the game, and definitely brought something new to the game.

      Any idea if Johnson is staying at Fulham?


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