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Bedoya enjoying added positional freedom ahead of ‘special’ matchup with Colombia

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Photo by Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

 

By RYAN TOLMICH

Alejandro Bedoya would probably count his recent World Cup appearances as the most special matches of his career, but the U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder is ready to add another match to that list of the most special matches he has ever played in.

Bedoya, who was born in New Jersey to parents of Colombian decent, will take the field on Friday against a Colombian national team he grew up watching and rooting for.

The latest in a family line of professional soccer players, Bedoya’s father, Adriano, and grandfather, Fabio, played for Colombian clubs Millionarios and Deportes Quindío, respectively.

That connection ensures that Friday’s clash will be an emotional one for Bedoya, whose family’s allegiances will remain up in the air heading towards kickoff.

“It’s a special feeling for me, my family, everybody,” Bedoya said Wednesday. “My mom is actually coming from Miami to watch this game. Last time around, my grandfather was wearing a Colombia shirt at the game in Philly, so it’s interesting. It’s cool. Colombia is in my blood. I’ve got a lot of family that still lives there. I used to go there every summer, every year. It’s definitely a special feeling.

“I grew up watching them play and for me to be able to play against this side of Colombia reminds me of 1994, when they had such a special team. This team is a strong and good team with a lot of good players, so I’m definitely looking forward to it.”

In addition to the obvious emotions that come with facing your family’s home country, Bedoya will also face the added pressure of adjusting to a new role within the team.

Bedoya, who has been mainly deployed out wide in recent years, has taken on a much more prominent role in the team’s past three outings, as the Nantes midfielder has been given more time to display his ability on the ball.

“The past few games, starting with the game in Prague, the last two friendlies, I’ve been moved around a little bit,” Bedoya said. “Versatility can be a good or bad thing, but I like to see it as a good thing where I can play different positions and try out new things. I think that the last few positions that I’ve played have given me a little bit more freedom just to get into spaces and get on the ball more.

“I’m liking it, but it’s nice to be in here with a new group of guys to try new things. We’ve got tournaments coming up, but we want to finish 2014 on a good note against some good teams.”

Comments

  1. Rubio Rubin should start over Julien Green. Rubin is 4th in assists in Eredivisie, Green isn’t doing anything in the Bundesliga. I don’t mind Green coming in as a sub, however, physically and tactically he’s not ready yet to be a starter.

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  2. It’s so depressing that Donovan is about to retire and is right now still our best creative midfielder/forward in the pool. How could that be!? No No No! Our second best is Dempsey and he is also older. These young players need to develop and get good ASAP!

    When we are here talking about Bedoya being our creative spark for the national team I get really nervous. He has been a bench player a lot during his European career and played in lower-level leagues. His ceiling appears to be that of playing on a small team in the French League 1. On the national team, to me he’s just a solid player that runs a lot but when he gets in a good position he messes up the final pass or shot. He’s not skilled on the ball and can’t run past people. He lacks technical skill and had a weak shot. His strongest ability is just that he hustles.

    This is why I get so angry every time an Altidore or Holden or Pelosi or Gatt or Gyau or Agudelo or Shea (etc.) gets injured or is over there making bad career decisions. This is all made even worst by what Klinsmann has shown to be horrible decision making when picking rosters. When Klinsmann got hired I was the first one ready to throw a parade, but now I know better. I don’t get why some of you love him. He’s a smart dude big picture wise, but as an actual football manager (coaching, tactics, implementing and developing the style of play, selecting players, putting players in the right positions, putting the teams success ahead of his own ego) he’s not good at all. He needs to find himself a very good assistant like he had in Germany.

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    • Ummm….look JK may not be perfect. But he did coach us to winning the group of death when everyone had us dropping out in the first round. He gets results. Now, we may not like how he makes us play, or where he plays certain players and I’ll never forgive him for dropping LD for what seems to me to be purely personal reasons, but I’m starting to see a certain method to his madness and like I said, he gets results.

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    • Would you rather see Bob Bradley coaching the team? Do you think that Bradley would have even paid attention to the likes of Ibarra, Green, Garza and all the new upcoming players? You may not like Klinsmann but one thing they guy has is a vision. A vision to get the best talent that he can possibly get for the national team. So hang in there and let him do his job. He is paid the big money to make the difficult decisions.

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    • The USMNT has always lacked a true creative midfielder. Say whatever you’d like but Donovan was best as a wide player and Dempsey is/was best playing under a target striker. The up and coming young attacking players (Green, Gyau, Rubin, Arreola, Gil, Gall, etc…) along with the likes of Jozy, Boyd, & Aron, will fill the void left by Donovan & Dempsey in short order (within 2 years). The options at the 2-Way & DM positions is looking better than any other time in USMNT’s history. Bradley, Diskerud, Williams, Hyndman, Powers, Senora, Canouse, Stanko, etc… will cover the gap left by Jones.
      The worry at the moment is on the back line. I’m not sold on much if any of the defenders at other than Fabian….but he (like Jozy) needs to get back to playing regularly.

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  3. I for one like Ale playing a wide d-mid role…. it suits his ability for tracking back and tackling as well as his linking ability

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