Photo by Rick Osentoski/ISIphotos.com
The United States men's national team turned in a strong performance in its Gold Cup opener, topping North American foe Canada, 2-0.
While the team effort was impressive, and the victory an important one for a team focused on reclaiming regional bragging rights, a number of individuals stood out with their play.
For starters, Jozy Altidore came through with a goal and, for all intents and purposes, an assist in spearheading the attack and contributing to both goals.
Altidore wasn't alone in starring at Ford Field, though, as a few more players garnered individual attention after the game.
Clint Dempsey scored a crucial insurance goal as Canada was pressuring for an equalizer and nearly scored on an audacious scorpion kick attempt off a deflected cross.
TIm Howard stepped up with some tremendous saves late in the game, including a three-save sequence in the final moments that showed just how influential he can be to the United States' success.
Michael Bradley showed that not playing regularly at the club level hasn't affected his form, as he covered a tremendous amount of distance while distributing accurately and controlling the center of the pitch. Jermaine Jones did the same, playing more of a holding role than Bradley while picking his times to advance.
Tim Ream was given the start ahead of Oguchi Onyewu at centerback and continued to display his composure on the ball, earning high praise from Bob Bradley after the game. Aside from the play where Simeon Jackson nutmegged him in the box but could not get a shot off after a number of U.S. players provided cover, Ream held his own in his first international game in which something was on the line.
Which USMNT player stood out for you the most Tuesday night? Cast your vote here:
How did you vote? Which player stood out the most? Anybody not named above that stood out more for you?
Share your thoughts below.