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Americans Abroad: Weekend Rewind

Eric Lichaj Nottingham Forest (Nottingham Forest)


Eric Lichaj may not be getting many U.S. Men’s National Team looks these days, but he continues to be one of the more consistent Americans playing abroad.

Lichaj made his 19th start of the season on Saturday, helping Nottingham Forest edge Derby County, 2-1, to snap an eight-game winless run across all competitions that dated back to Nov. 22. Lichaj went the distance in the match, manning the left back spot for the second straight Championship game for the Reds. It was his 24 appearance of the campaign.

Another regular contributor, Alejandro Bedoya turned in an 86-minute shift on Saturday in a 1-0 loss to AS Monaco. Bedoya was deployed centrally behind striker Yacine Bammou, but they and the rest of the club could not get off the schneid for the third straight match in all competitions. Nantes fell to to eighth place with the result, and is now eight points shy of Ligue 1’s lone Europa League spot.

One player who did get on the scoresheet this weekend was Herculez Gomez, who marked his Puebla return with a headed goal. Gomez entered Puebla’s Friday encounter with Veracruz at halftime, and netted on a close-range effort that gave him his first tally for the Camoteros in nearly five years. Gomez, fellow American Michael Orozco and Puebla were on the losing end, however, as they were beaten, 3-1.

Here is how the Americans Abroad did this weekend:



  • Tim Howard and Everton play West Bromwich Albion on Monday.
  • Brad Guzan started, played 90 minutes and made three saves in Aston Villa’s 2-0 loss vs. Liverpool on Saturday.
  • DeAndre Yedlin did not dress in Tottenham Hotspur’s 2-1 win vs. Sunderland on Saturday.
  • Brad Friedel did not dress for Tottenham Hotspur.
  • Geoff Cameron came off the bench and played four minutes in Stoke City’s 1-0 win vs. Leicester City on Saturday.
  • Gedio Zelalem did not dress in Arsenal’s 2-0 win vs. Manchester City on Sunday.


  • Jonathan Spector did not dress in Birmingham City’s 1-1 draw vs. Leeds United on Saturday.
  • Will Packwood did not dress for Birmingham City. He is recovering from an injury.
  • Tim Ream started and played 90 minutes in Bolton Wanderers’ 2-1 win vs. Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.
  • Eric Lichaj started and played 90 minutes in Nottingham Forest’s 2-1 win vs. Derby County on Saturday.
  • Danny Williams started and played 90 minutes in Reading’s 2-1 loss vs. Fulham on Saturday.
  • Emerson Hyndman did not dress in Fulham’s 2-1 win vs. Reading on Saturday. He is with the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team.
  • Zak Whitbread did not dress in Derby County’s 2-1 loss vs. Nottingham Forest on Saturday. He is recovering from an injury.
  • Oguchi Onyewu dressed but did not play in Charlton Athletic’s 5-0 loss vs. Watford on Saturday.


  • Alejandro Bedoya started and played 86 minutes in FC Nantes’ 1-0 loss vs. AS Monaco on Saturday.


  • Aron Johannsson came off the bench and played 14 minutes in AZ Alkmaar’s 2-0 win vs. Dordrecht ’90 on Saturday.
  • Rubio Rubin started and played 90 minutes in FC Utrecht’s 2-1 loss vs. SC Heerenveen on Sunday.


  • Sacha Kljestan came off the bench and played seven minutes in RSC Anderlecht’s 3-0 win vs. Lierse on Sunday.


  • Michael Orozco started and played 90 minutes in Puebla’s 3-1 loss vs. Veracruz on Friday.
  • Herculez Gomez came off the bench, played 45 minutes and scored a GOAL for Puebla.


  • Greg Garza started and played 90 minutes in Club Tijuana’s 1-0 win vs. Club America on Friday.
  • Joe Corona dressed but did not play for Club Tijuana.
  • Paul Arriola did not dress for Club Tijuana. He is with the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team.
  • Jose Torres did not dress in Tigres UANL’s 1-0 win vs. Club Leon on Saturday.
  • Edgar Castillo started and played 90 minutes in Atlas’ 2-1 win vs. Morelia on Saturday.
  • Ventura Alvarado dressed but did not play in Club America’s 1-0 loss vs. Club Tijuana on Friday.


What do you think of these performances? Should Lichaj be earning more looks from Jurgen Klinsmann? Do you think Bedoya and Nantes will ultimately obtain that coveted Europa League spot?

Share your thoughts below.


    • I do think Lichaj should be brought in. Castillo also continues to play regularly and I’m all for him coming back into the nats picture as an option at LM.

      • What is the case for bringing in Lichaj?

        JK and his staff have been watching him for nearly four years now and have had him in for two games in Europe and, it would seem, have not been impressed.

        What is different now?.

      • What has changed….
        1) Lichaj is fully healthy (heading into the WC & before he was playing injured).
        2) Beasley has retired from the National Team leaving a starting LB spot up for grabs.
        3) LB’s in the pool as of right now: Garza, Chandler, Fabian, Ream, Rogers, Klute, Castillo…..Not the most impressive options….2 converted RB’s, a LCB, 2 LM’s, and an inexperienced Liga MX player.

        IMO Lichaj is equal to Garza and better at LB than Ream, Rogers, Klute & Castillo (at the moment). IF given a chance and IF he performs would give the coaching staff options on where they could use Chandler & Fabian (FJ in Mid, & TC at RB while Yedlin breaks into Europe.

      • Lost in Space

        “3) LB’s in the pool as of right now: Garza, Chandler, Fabian, Ream, Rogers, Klute, Castillo…..Not the most impressive options….2 converted RB’s, a LCB, 2 LM’s, and an inexperienced Liga MX player.”

        Lichaj is a RB at Forest. Or at least that is where is he most often listed.

        He has said numerous times that he is more comfortable there than on the left. So using him at left back for the US would make him a “converted RB”. And he is not as good as Fabian or Yedlin at RB.

        Perhaps you did not see Garza’s recent performances at left back for the US. He immediately looked like he had been playing there for years.

        I have no inside information but it looks to me like the starting RB is whoever of the two, Yedlin or Fabian is not playing in midfield and the LB back spot is Garza’s to lose.

        In Eric’s two cameos with the USMNT he, an experienced international, looked very tentative. It is hard to look good in garbage time but compare that to Garza, who is comparatively young and inexperienced, looking solid and assured from the get go in his first game. And more important Garza is comfortable going forward, more so than I’ve ever seen Eric look.

        If LIchaj has a spot on the USMNT it looks like his best bet would be to beat out Chandler. Timmy is not what I thought he would be but he is still pretty solid and is a superior soccer player to Lichaj.

        I’m not familiar enough with Klute to comment on him,

        Ream is a Boca-esque clone to be used at left back only in emergencies or when you are playing a three man back line. His problem is simple. It’s called Geoff Cameron.

        Edgar is okay at left back but really is best at wingback full time. In fact, if he could actually pass the ball, or shoot, he could be a poor man’s Angel Di Maria. But what are the chances that will happen?

        As for Robbie, he is still learning left back but he is superior to Eric in the areas that JK wants his full backs to do well, being comfortable in possession and going forward. It’s unlikely that RR gets back but I would not count him out either.

        I have no problem with bringing in Eric as we all know how form for all these guys can quickly change.

        But I do have a problem with how you make it sound as if JK and his staff have no idea what Lichaj can do or whether he would fit in.

        I’m pretty sure JK and his staff know Eric’s qualities better than you or I do. After all they have had him in for training. We all know how important fitting in with the rest of the players is to the USMNT. Maybe the other players are just not that into Eric. And how would we know that?

        So unless you buy into the idea JK is a bigot who hates Polish players, which Miro Klose would find funny ( I saw those two together after the game at RFK and they looked pretty friendly to me) , or that JK has some personal beef with Lichaj, a guy he apparently has spent very little time with before calling him in, it seems as if being a regular for a Championship team that is battling relegation is not as prestigious in USMNT circles as it used to was.

  1. Most of these guys didn’t even dress, or dress and did not play, or played but did not perform for these mediocre second and third division teams. Come back to MLS. It’s crappola, but it is OUR LEAGUE.

    • Since the Championship is now regarded as inferior to MLs and Forest are near relegation,

      Lichaj is not playing at a higher level than for example Zach Loyd who is not getting called in either.

      • I wouldn’t say that the Championship is lower level than MLS. I watch it on Bein Sports. I would say that MLS is similar to probably lower to mid-tier Championship (honestly).

      • Bollocks, MLS is third tier league in England, Spain, Italy, and Germany. Second tier in France, Portugal, Nederlands. First tier, everywhere else.

  2. “but they and the rest of the club could not get off the schneid for the third straight match in all competitions.”
    WTF is a schneid

      • From Urban Dictionary:

        Winless, scoreless or hitless, in dating or especially in sports. Used especially when a long loosing streak is broken. Comes from Gin Rummy when if you lose all the hands you have to pay double or get “schneidered.”

    • Well, Fletcher certainly didn’t. His miss was even more shocking than Altidore’s, yet he gets a pass from the press and Sunderland fans. So, I guess its still Jozy’s fault that Sunderland forwards remain goalless. Nothing to do with the team’s tactics at all. If you need any evidence that Jozy was victim of a double standard, Fletcher’s miss is Exhibit A.

      • Nate,

        That argument does not really hold up.

        In sport there is nothing wrong with “double standards” or as I prefer to call it a case by case basis.

        Jozy has 50 appearances over 2 seasons with 3 goals

        Fletcher has 70 appearances over 3 seasons with 18 goals or six times as many goals.

        Fletcher at least has the excuse of having had a number of bad injuries to cut into his productivity while Jozy has no such excuse. He was just not very good.

        On the basis of their Sunderland record neither one is worth a warm bucket of spit but by most standards, Jozy’s terribleness was an order of magnitude above Fletcher’s.

  3. Just a note about Specs – reason he didn’t dress Saturday was that his wife gave birth Friday night. Congrats to the Spector family!


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