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USA vs. Poland: Match Night Commentary

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The U.S. men's national team takes on Poland tonight in Chicago's Soldier Field on a friendly that should give us a good glimpse into how the U.S. team is shaping up heading into the new World Cup cycle (8pm, Fox Soccer Channel/Galavision).

U.S. men's national team head coach Bob Bradley figured to make some tactical changes and take a look at some new faces, and we'll see our share of change based on the lineup the United States will field tonight. German-born midfielder Jermaine Jones will make his U.S. national team debut tonight.

I will be providing commentary on the match, so please feel free to follow along here. As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Commentary is after the jump):

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FINAL– That's all for me. Thanks for following along, and feel free to share your post-game thoughts in the comments section below. 

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FINAL– USA 2, Poland 2. USA has some dangerous flurries late, but can't put one on goal.  Great debut for Jermaine Jones, frustrating night for Jozy Altidore. The defense was shaky on the night, but the attack showed some great signs of promise.

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92nd Minute– USA free kick from the right channel, far out.

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90th Minute– WOW, what a scrum in front of goal. USA comes OH SO CLOSE but Boruc saves it, USA can't get another shot on goal. Dempsey comes close, but his shot dribbles wide. WOW.

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88th Minute– Time running out on the USA. Can they find some more chances?

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87th Minute– Dempsey with a run andf draws a free kick about 28 yards out. Who will take this one? Jones, Holden?

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84th Minute– Altidore earns a yellow as the Americans look tired in these final minutes. If they're not careful, Poland will find a winner.

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81st Minute– Cherundolo draws a foul. Long free kick for USA.

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80th Minute– Poland corner. Cleared away, but Poland maintains possession.

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79th Minute– Holden's free kick service is headed out by Altidore.

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74th Minute– Holden draws a dangerous free kick at the left edge of the area.

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73rd Minute- GOAL POLAND!!! Another poor clearance attempt leaves a free look in the area and it is blasted past Howard. USA 2, Poland 2.

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71st Minute– Holden with an awful clearance that nearly led to an equalizer.

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68th Minute– Poland is pressing for an equalizer. The U.S. is on its heels a bit.

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63rd Minute– Alejandro Bedoya comes in for Feilhaber.

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61st Minute– SAVE HOWARD!! Punches away a DANGEROUS shot from distance by Poland.

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58th Minute– SAVE BORUC!! Altidore gets onto a bad back-pass from a Polish defender, but can't beat Boruc.

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57th Minute– It's going to be something when this group gets to play with Landon Donovan. The U.S. offense could be considerably better than the last four-year cycle.

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54th Minute– How good are Jermaine Jones' passes? Guy is dropping lasers.

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53rd Minute– That's two goals against Poland in his career for Onyewu. You have to feel good for him considering the path he's been through over the past year.

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52nd Minute- GOAL USA!!! Onyewu with the HEADER off a Holden corner. USA 2, Poland 1.

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51st Minute– Holden really is playing with confidence. The Americans are moving the ball well in the attack, and have earned a corner.

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49th Minute– USA comes close, but Artur Boruc corrals the ball.

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46th Minute– And we're back. No subs for USA>

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HALFTIME– The match started brightly for the USA, but defensive issues and Poland's relentless attack damped the enthusiasm. Altidore should have more than one goal but it must be noted that he's playing with confidence and has done very well to put himself in good spots.

Stuart Holden has played very well tonight, and Jermaine Jones has impressed as well. Onyewu doesn't look 100 percent, but has dealt with most challenges, save for a poor header clearance that led to Poland's goal.

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HALFTIME– USA 1, Poland 1. The American attack is moving well and creating chances, but the defense showed some spotty moments and Poland did well to keep pressure on the Americans.

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44th Minute– Altidore WIDE! A free header in front of goal and he sends it wide. Good job by him to get in position, but he needs to bury that. Good day so far for him.

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42nd Minute– Altidore OFF THE CROSSBAR!! Great pass from Bradley to spring him, but it hits the woodwork. Wow.

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41st Minute– SAVE HOWARD!! Poland with another dangerous sequence but the shot isn't good enough.

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39th Minute– Poland is relentless, but the Americans are holding on and withstanding the pressure.

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37th Minute– Holden skies the free kick high.

Jones is fouled yet again and isn't happy about it.

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36th Minute– Jones draws a foul at the left corner of the area, above the area. Dangerous free kick chance for USA.

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34th Minute– Onyewu's passing out of the back has left a lot to be desired. He should probably defer to Edu on service.

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32nd Minute– Credit to Poland, which has been dangerous and fast on the counter. This is no B team, but a young and talented squad. Let's see how the USA responds now.

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29th Minute– GOAL POLAND!! And yes, just as I compliment Onyewu he fails to connect on a clearing header after a bad clearance attempt by Holden. USA 1, Poland 1.

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28th Minute– So far, so good from Onyewu. He doesn't look quite as fluid as the Onyewu of old, but he's stepped up when needed so far.

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27th Minute– SAVE HOWARD. Stays in front of a hard long-distance shot.

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24th Minute– USA is having fun moving the ball around. Earned a corner.

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22nd Minute– SAVE HOWARD!!! Stops a one-on-one with Lewandowski. Clutch.

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20th Minute– Jermaine Jones' tenacity and work rate is impressive. Nobody will outwork a Jones-Bradley central midfield. Those two can run all day.

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19th Minute– This U.S. team is well suited to play the ball on the ground.

Poland's squad is very quick and is testing the U.S. defense.

Onyewu with a nice move to step in and break up a dangerous sequence.

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17th Minute– There is no doubting that Holden is playing with real confidence.

Jones helps break up a dangerous Poland counter.

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16th Minute– Howard saves a Poland header. Not too much trouble.

Liking this USA lineup.

Hard foul on Altidore. Poles aren't delivering challenges like this is a friendly.

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14th Minute– And just like that, we've seen just what Jones can bring to this squad.

Altidore looks lively tonight.

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14th Minute– Holden set up Jones on that play, and the USMNT newcomer lofted a perfect long pass that Altidore handles perfectly. His first goal since the Turkey friendly.

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12th Minute- GOAL USA!!!! And it's ALTIDORE off a BEAUTIFUL pass from Jermaine Jones. USA 1, Poland 0.

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11th Minute– Nice tackle and pass by Holden, good sequence for him.

Dempsey skies one into the stands. Americans moving the ball around well.

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10th Minute– Poland doesn't have many familar names but it looks like a quick squad.

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5th Minute– Central defense will be key to watch. We'll see how Onyewu looks and whether Edu adjusts well to centerback. He's looked good early.

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3rd Minute– Pro-Poland crowd, not that it's surprising, but a good turnout of American fans as well. Lively crowd.

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1st Minute– And we're off.

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PRE-GAME– Brian McBride was presented to the crowd at Soldier Field before the match. Nice touch. For those who didn't see, McBride scored a nice goal in Chicago's win against Columbus on Friday.

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PRE-GAME– We're about to kick off.

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PRE-GAME– Count me among those who really like the lineup. Very interested in seeing Jones-Bradley work together, as well as seeing how Altidore operates as a lone striker. We're going to get some very good insight into the current state of the squad.

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PRE-GAME– Here is the U.S. starting lineup, and yes, it's got some very intriguing developments:

———————–Altidore———————

 Feilhaber———–Dempsey————Holden

—————–Jones——-Bradley————–

Bocanegra—-Onyewu—-Edu———Cherundolo

———————–Howard———————–

Maurice Edu gets the start in central defense. He has played there before, and offers up a very strong option in the middle. His passing out of the back should help the U.S. attack, but he also reads the game well and should be able to hold his own as a defender.

Clint Dempsey will be slotted in behind Altidore, at least that what it appears to be based on the lineup U.S. Soccer posted on its Twitter feed. Does seem a bit odd not to at least give Holden a look in a central role. Perhaps we'll see that at some point in the match.

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Comments

  1. Holy eff there were a lot of Pollacks there. Kinda sad that US citizens boo our players. Root for parents country, I don’t care, but you shouldn’t be booing American players if you are an American. I support Germany when they play, but I would never root for them over the US, and I certainly wouldn’t boo our players

    Reply
  2. Bocanegra was weak. Most of the attacks came from his side of the field. It’s not his fault though really. At his age he shouldn’t be playing LB. It’s that Bob will NEVER play a right footed fullback at LB, so that’s why neither Lichaj nor Spector didn’t get the start

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  3. Dude, was pretty effin good. Unless you’d rather have Ricardo Clark there? And even as much as I like Edu, I don’t think he could have made that pass

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  4. I think that this is for the W.C. Bid committee to show how much support nations on other continents can get from home crowds in US Stadiums.

    Reply
  5. Thought Edu was our best player. He was constantly having to cover for Carlos’s lack of speed and numerous break downs in the middle. I think he will be the best CM by 2014. Still need 2 CB’s and a LB.

    Can not believe Lichaj did not get on the game.

    Reply

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