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USMNT settles for draw after Altidore red card, late Swiss equalizer

Switzerland v USA - International Friendly

By FRANCO PANIZO

The U.S. Men’s National Team was on the way to an impressive victory, but a moment of frustration and indiscipline from one its most experienced players opened the door for some more second-half struggles.

A Jozy Altidore red card for dissent in the 68th minute left the Americans down a man, paving the way for a late Switzerland equalizer in an eventual 1-1 tie in Zurich. Brek Shea had opened the scoring for the Americans with a gorgeous free kick just before the end of the first half, but Altidore’s red card helped the Swiss pull level 10 minutes before the final whistle.

Valentin Stocker pushed home the equalizer at Stadion Letzigrund following a corner kick from the left, scoring the eighth goal the U.S. has surrendered in the final 10 minutes of its last eight games. The U.S. now has just one win in those matches.

Both Alfredo Morales and substitute DeAndre Yedlin were unable to cleanly clear away the late set piece from Granit Xhaka, allowing the ball to fall right in front of goal for the easy finish from Stocker.

The late equalizer, which adds to the U.S.’s recent second-half woes, ruined what was an overall solid, bounce-back performance from Jurgen Klinsmann’s side. The Americans were deployed in a 4-4-2 diamond setup and looked much better than in last week’s 3-2 loss to Denmark, creating a number of chances in the first half before Shea opened the scoring.

On the final play of the first half, Shea rifled a gorgeous free kick from 22 yards out up and over the Switzerland wall and into the back of the net. The goal was the left back’s second for the U.S. this year.

The Americans had other clear opportunities to take the lead in the opening stanza, but were unable to convert. An open Gyasi Zardes flubbed a perfect cross from Alejandro Bedoya in the 15th minute, and Michael Bradley’s late trailing run 12 minutes later resulted in a shot that went over the crossbar.

Switzerland’s best first-half chance came in the 39th minute when Xherdan Shaqiri raced in untouched on the left side of the penalty area. Shaqiri then hit a low cross, but Admir Mehmedi completely missed on his attempt to place the ball.

The U.S. came out of the intermission with more of the same type of aggressiveness in the final third, as Timmy Chandler whipped in a cross from the right in the 49th minute that Zardes beat Switzerland goalkeeper Roman Burki to but sent wide of the open goal.

It all went downhill for the U.S. after Altidore’s sending off. After seen complaining to Italian match official Luca Banti for what Altidore felt was a foul, the U.S. forward went on to trip Jacques Moubandje high up the field.

Banti whistled Altidore for the foul and was showing him a yellow, but the Toronto FC striker mouthed off to earn a second yellow and early shower.

Switzerland piled on the pressure after that, with Breel Embolo nearly creating something out of nothing in the 74th minute. Embolo got by a couple of defenders near the right touch line and whipped in a low cross that debuting U.S. goalkeeper William Yarbrough, who entered the match at halftime, swatted away.

On the ensuing corner kick, Paktim Kasami nearly found an equalizer when he nodded a cross from the right over the bar despite being a mere feet away from goal.

The Swiss finally pulled level in the 80th minute through Stocker’s simple effort, salvaging a result and giving the Americans another late goal to rue.

The match marked the U.S. debut of Mexican-born midfielder William Yarbrough, while Ventura Alvarado and Jordan Morris both earned their second national team caps.

Klinsmann will not be able to get the full squad together again until the summer, but the U.S. does have a friendly outside of the international calendar against Mexico on April 15.

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What do you think of the USMNT’s 1-1 draw vs. Switzerland? Surprised by Altidore’s sending off? Which Americans impressed/disappointed you?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Well done, lads! That was a good performance against a talented squad. Keep up the good work! Morales & Bedoya in particular I liked. Jozy red card I’m on record saying I approve. We need fire come what may.

    Reply
  2. I think the usmnt found their formation the diamond midfield. Now keep it and work on it and tactics and players.

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  3. It seems like our guys are super tired at around the 75th minute. I feel like that has a big role for the U.S. conceding late goals. I know this game had different circumstances, but I was just saying that Jozy was starting to get lazy right before all that shenanigans happened. I think the high pressing and chasing meaninglessly at the beginnings of games hurts our team down the stretch. I liked when klinsmann paced the high pressure and pressed higher later during the game. This strategy, as he said in an Interview, worked towards his first victory against Mexico.

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  4. Looking for the positives over the past 4 matches….
    – Jones at CB is not a bad option and adds grit/experience.
    – Shea doesn’t look bad at LB or LWB. Still needs work, but if he continues to improve….
    – Williams was a positive today, and worth more looks as a replacement for Beckerman
    – Books is growing, but needs an organizer next to him (Jones)
    – Alvarado showed enough to warrant more call-ups. But like Brooks needs an Organizer.
    – Bedoya looking good on the outside (but not so good inside).
    – Jozy has shown confidence, but needs to keep his mouth shut.
    – Johannsson show sparks but needs to get consistent reps to build his conditioning.
    – Zardes has show sparks, but should be a backup to Bedoya for now.

    Reply
    • Negatives over the past 4 matches…
      – Garza, Fabian, Chandler, & Yedlin have been less than impressive. Hopefully this
      is rectified soon.
      – Besler’s post world cup form is still poor.
      – Need at least 1 keeper not named Guzan to step it up before June. Johnson, Hamid,
      or Yarbourgh at least until Howard returns from his break.
      – Green needs to be w/ the U-23s for the rest of the year. He needs to get his head on.
      – We need wingers ASAP….Gyau, Gatt, & Nagbe can’t get healthy eligible soon enough

      Reply
      • “We need wingers ASAP….Gyau, Gatt, & Nagbe can’t get healthy eligible soon enough” PREACH!!!!!

  5. Good comments on here. Agree with most about the game play. Other comments;
    – Rimando not great, Yarbrough interesting
    – Brooks, Orozco and Shea looks like a good backline
    – Chandler off and on, mostly on
    – Bedoya solid game, Bradley good less by his own standards
    – Zardes looks to be a USMNT regular now
    – wth was wrong with Jozy?
    – love the Jurgen mic!
    – impressive how many US fans, and loud ones, are at all of the away games these days!
    – marching band, wasn’t expecting that! Actually really liked the ncaa football feel!
    – fox; strong/friedel & crew – not bad, great additions with those two and holden. Always been a fan of wynalda and stone
    – blue uni’s are terrible!
    – denmark & switzerland were great opponents. Enjoyed them much more than the usuals we run with like scotland, mexico, honduras, etc. id say the same about chile & panama
    – hate these late goals; bad mentality but if you look at just the 1st halfs for the past year our team is much improved. Can’t wait for competitive matches to see this team play for real

    Reply
    • Since you mentioned the commentators, I would like to add that I think John Strong has become one of the best US soccer announcers. I had not been aware of him until relatively recently and the first thing I noticed and liked was how he provided just the right amount of information. Since then he has improved his delivery. I really enjoy listening to games he covers.

      Reply
  6. This team is even harder to watch play than Bob Bradley’s. And to think I supported JK when he was hired. I admit, I was wrong. Gold Cup Final? I don’t think they are making the semis.

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    • even though JK led us to the previous Gold Cup title (oft-criticized Shea with the game winning goal in the final)?

      Reply
      • lol fair enough, TomG… but i don’t think the Gold Cup is the best thing to bring up when hating on JK, Ronaldo Messi; JK won the last Gold Cup. If anything, as tom pointed out, not winning again would speak more to LD’s contribution than JK’s bad coaching…

    • Julian Green is already cap tied. No need to keep pretending he’s actually a good player. We can now relax and give him time to develop and see how far he gets.

      Reply
    • Morris came in just to run and press the back line. I don’t believe he was expected to score or anything. I wouldn’t read too much into it.

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  7. Maybe I’m a half full glass kind of guy, but I can’t understand all the negative comments, not only here, but by TV analysts. This was a very good performance and a good game. Here’s an example of what I consider kind of unfair reporting. Commentators said how much Switzerland had in possession and also criticized the US for passing the ball back too much. One also said that the US high pressing didn’t work. They failed to recognize that the high pressing forced several bad passes and also caused the Swiss to make many back passes. I wouldn’t be surprised if prior to Altidore’s ejection the Swiss made more negative passes than the US. This was also why they had moire possession–a lot of back passes and square passes. Before Jozy’s ejection they really weren’t that potent in their attack, with only the one cross in front of Yarbrough that was very dangerous. The US created more and better chances than the Swiss before going down a man. I’m surprised MB hasn’t gotten more criticism for skying the ball over the net when he had no one in front of him from about 5 yards out.
    T

    Reply
    • Well if it makes you feel better, on Univision the commentators said that the U.S. clearly won the first-half and was the better team. I agreed, the U.S. was the better team in the first-half. Of course the red-card then changes the second half.

      To answer your question though, your expectations are usually very low. Obviously we are both USA fans and root for the USA. From my perspective you are such a homer/apologist though. It’s unbelievable at times. I will give you just one tiny example of hundreds I could give. Above when someone wrote about Jozy’s bone-headed red-card, you and people like you immediately jumped in with stuff like “well this is his first red-card in so many caps” or “look at all the goals he has scored for us”. So what? It was a bone-headed play by Jozy that hurt us this game. Why can’t you just admit it and move on? Why the need to defend and apologize for him? We are allowed to be fans and also be critical. When someone does well we celebrate them, and when they mess up we criticize them. That is fandom.

      I guess you call yourself a half-glass full person and I call you an apologists. Just semantics.

      Reply
      • Many years ago I read a great quote in an article by Jesse Jackson. He said that text without context is pretext. When making judgments, I think it is vital to put things in context–both historical and environmental. I try to do that. I have been following soccer for 40 years, the US mens team for 25. I also have had an academic interest in systems development and change for about 50 years. I have found that sports provides a good example to study and have followed sports generally for 55 to 60 years. You don’t change teams or systems over night. Klinsmann came in with the goal of changing the whole US soccer culture. To judge him and the team on the basis of some idealized view you may have is unfair and unrealistic. It’s a gradual process., with a lot of fits and starts. I consider myself a political scientist and the viewpoint you bring here is like that of a political ideologue. You have your opinions and don’t let facts get in the way. I try to base my opinions on facts and decades of observation. Of course, that doesn’t guarantee that opinions are correct, but it is more likely they are than those based on nothing but your own belief. I don’t know what you expect of the US team, but you don’t seem to have a realistic view of the team, US players, or anything related to their development. I was always a UCLA Bruin fan. You should know, if you don’t already, that John Wooden was UCLA coach for, I think, 11 years before he ever got his team into the NCAA playoffs. Then it was 3 more years before he made it again and won his first championship. Building a program takes time, even with one of the greatest coaches in history.

      • +1mil, well put. i truly wish you, GW, TomG, Increase0 and I could have our own web commentary/ round table while watching NT games. your insight is fact based and without emotional bias. I wish the rest of commenters could do the same. sadly Old School, Brett, UCLABRUIN(______) and slowleftarm are incapable of such scholarly discussion. Also note that i do not always agree with the formerly mentioned group but at least their comments are logical and non-hyperbolic.

      • Gary Page, wow you just said a whole lot of nothing. Don’t get me wrong, your comment was very intelligible and all but slightly off topic to what was being discussed. I can see why Auggie said you come off as full of yourself, you definitely do.

        Lets recap the conversation: You asked a question about not understanding the criticism and saying you look at the positives, then i tell you that you tend to downplay everything and be apologetic for the team and I bring up the Jozy red-card situation as an example of that. Then of course you change the subject and go into this mini-autobiography of yourself and then bring up your hero Klinsmann (when we weren’t even discussing him) and compare him to John Wooden. You completely ignore the Jozy question I posed to you. You talk about facts but you never use facts, its all your opinion. Saying something like “this is the USMNT B/C team” is not a fact, it is an opinion. 2+2=4 is a fact.

        Next time you answer a question, spare me and everyone else here your “resume” of fandom. I have also been following the USMNT for over 20 years, but that doesn’t make my opinion on a specific subject any more true or false. Don’t even get me started and your whole social-science rant. I actually happen to have my undergrad degree in social-sciences and I was still rolling my eyes while reading your post. Let me summarize everything you said above into one sentence: “I really like Klinsmann!”

        And Davis! You sir are quite the character. I like how you basically listed the Klinsmann fan-boys here as geniuses and the people who tend to be critical of him as idi0ts. Yea ok buddy, keep telling yourself that.

    • Dude you come off like Mr. Know it all in every post. Should he have finished, maybe?
      The hardest ball to hit on goal is an awkward, bouncing ball. One of the next most difficult shots is one going across your body. Add on the fact that he was on the run with his left foot and you have 4 difficult factors to finish that shot
      Take the rest of the night off and go do a clinic for some rec soccer dad’s who will be impressed with your drivel
      We are not

      Reply
      • You mis-read my intentions. I was not criticizing MB, although I thought he could have done better. Given all the criticism handed out on this site, I was just surprised that he escaped today.

      • +1 for fighting the good fight but trust me, there will always be ldiots on here that misconstrue your comments solely to get on your case. I wish those people the best in their lives…

      • auggie,

        You are right, those balls were difficult to put on target. But, I’ve seen Mikey put such balls on target before and given that he is unarguably one of the best American players alive, it is not out of line to criticize him for it.

  8. It’s frustrating that we came out of this with a draw, but honestly, given that this was a friendly, I’m taking away more positives from this than negatives.

    In the first half, we generated more dangerous chances, and although we lost the time of possession battle, we made good use (with the exception of our finishing) of the time we did have on the ball. Bradley did relatively well in his more advanced role, Chandler shows why he’s dangerous on the right side (although I would still prefer to see him as a right midfielder by 2018), and even Bedoya got into the attack a little. Altidore still tended to come back for the ball a little too much, but even with that said, I thought he put in a solid half (and second, up until that red card). I think that come Gold Cup time, if we plug in Mix for Williams, Dempsey for Zardes, and F. Johnson for Morales, we’ll be in very good shape offensively against CONCACAF competition. Defensively, I thought Brooks recovered well from the Denmark game and Orozco continues to be solid in the middle. Shea at LB wasn’t a disaster either. And if we ultimately decide to play a traditional CDM next to Bradley rather than Mix, Danny Williams certainly showed enough to merit consideration.

    Of course, in the second half, with Altidore’s red card, everything went out the window. We never fully recovered and I think we let the shock of losing him affect other aspects of the game (hence the calamity of errors across the multiple corners that led to the Swiss goal). But Altidore doesn’t have an extensive history of those kinds of outbursts (I can remember 1 ejection each during his stints at Hull and AZ, and until today, none in any USMNT games or at his other clubs), so I’m not terribly worried about this happening in a game that matters. 2nd half substitutions (both Alvarado and Yedlin had come on by that point) probably also contributed to backline confusion.

    Basically, while I’m frustrated by the result, my hope is that stabilizing our line-up ahead of the Gold Cup will help with defensive organization and reduce the number of 2nd half goals we allow. I also think that, as our 1st team offense gels, we should be able to generate a couple of goals per game, which should take a least a little pressure off our D. I’m not excusing our string of second half collapses, but I’m not willing to take a “sky is falling” position on them either.

    Reply
    • You just mentioned three straight red cards for losing his cool and then claim Altidore doesn’t have a extensive history of those kinds of outbursts. Three straight cards for the same reason is in fact an extensive history.

      Reply
      • Not “3 straight red cards.” Those ejections are spread out over about 6 years and 160+ games across a ton of clubs and the national team. Hardly what you’d call a trend.

      • OK. I’m bored enough to take this on (I almost said “I’ll bite”):

        1. Suarez’s last 2 biting offenses were within a 1-year period and appeared to be carbon copies of each other, that’s what made his last incident so notable. Altidore’s ejections were in 2009, 2012 (I think), and today (2015) — not particularly concentrated in any one period of his career, with lots of games in between where he didn’t blow up, even under similar conditions. As I remember it, each of Altidore’s 3 ejections also occurred under very different sets of circumstances (the Hull ejection, for example, occurred after he got into it with another player and threw the ball at him — very different from today, when he committed an ill-advised but not egregious foul, picked up a yellow, then immediately drew a second yellow for using the F-word in arguing with the official). So it’s a little hard to argue there’s a pattern of identical behavior or a common underlying cause.

        2. Even if I were to stipulate that 3 ejections in 6 years is an extensive history, my point was that Altidore doesn’t get ejected (or even carded) frequently enough that going into any particular game, I would worry about him losing his cool and getting sent off. A 3 in 165 chance of a red card isn’t exactly cause for alarm.

  9. Great result, in my opinion. Red card was really unfortunate, we were playing very good — better than anyone expected– and that really gave the game away. I know at Klinsmann comes off as a mad scientist to people, but it worked today. Let’s wait to judge him at the GC. We certainly showed improvement today, and all is semi-well at the moment.

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  10. My observations pre-red card, because after it was too frantic to really assess.

    1. While most people dislike Mikey being played in a more forward role, the difference in U.S. offensive possession has to be considered. He is one of the only, if not THE only player on the U.S. team who can effectively possess the ball in the offensive half and make plays while under high pressure. It seemed to me that this was the biggest factor for a improved U.S. offensive game. He had some errant passes and give aways, but his positives while playing higher up outweigh the negatives.

    2. Danny Williams played a really good game IMHO. He possessed the ball well and made some great passes to move the U.S. out of the defensive half or relieve pressure. If he can keep that up I would be okay with him as the starting CDM and Bradley playing further up the field. Williams also protected the back line well and made it difficult for the Swiss attack. Really positive showing from him.

    3. BREK SHEA! Besides the really great free kick, I thought he had one of the best games I’ve ever seen him play. Rarely got caught on defense, which was impressive considering they moved Shaqiri over to his side in the second half. I thought he did well. He also moved the ball out of the back and relieved pressure with some very good passing. Offensively, he made some great crosses into the box that put the Swiss D under pressure.

    4. Bedoya had a good game. He made some plays and was unlucky his cross to Zardes wasn’t converted. He seems to always wants to go forward and attack and he tries to find the killer pass. He is definitely more dynamic than Zusi and his work rate on D is helpful. He may not be a world beater, but I think he is our best right side wing option.

    5. Zardes had a pretty good game. Still pretty raw, but his ability to hold the ball, turn, and find a play was encouraging. You can see that with more seasoning he could be a full time starter on this team for years to come. You also have to love his hussle and desire to attck the box.

    6. The back line is still shaky. It seems like at any moment we are a boneheaded play away from giving up a goal. Hopefully this area improves once we have our back line picked and they can all work together for an extended period of time.

    7. Chandler did not look good. Balls were constantly played in behind him and was a defensive liability all night. If Brek can hold the the left D spot then Fabian should be played on the right like he was at the WC. However, if Fabian continues to get time at LM at his club then you have to play him there because in this game there was a big hole on that side.

    8. Morales played well for being out of position. Held the ball well but you could tell he wasn’t comfortable attacking. Definitely still a prospect at this point at any position on the field.

    9. Rimando was bad. Never really had to make a save while he was in, but made some bad passes and miskicked clearances. At this point I’m okay moving on and getting younger keepers experience. He just hasn’t done enough in his appearances.

    Reply
    • 10. Altidore was fine. Definitely our best forward when it comes to possessing the ball. He’s still frustrating to watch sometimes for all the reasons discussed at length on this website. The red card was dumb…

      Reply
      • I thought he looked pretty good as well, but definitely didn’t offer anything up the left wing. Seemed like he was mainly there as defensive cover for Brek, which I was ok with bc it allowed Brek more offensive freedom.

      • yeah, unfortunately Shea stayed home in this game (likely on purpose). his only time in the attack was his free kick. so Morales provided cover that wasn’t needed and left us lacking any attack from the left. this is illustrated by the network passing graph floating around (Doyle’s article on MLS.com has it).

        i like Morales but we need a true winger on that left side. FJ should be that guy but was sick today.

      • for sure, i think it was JK’s tactics that asked morales to tuck in and stay back leaving the RM to push up. almost like an asymmetrical 433

    • Good analysis. The only thing I disagree with is that you don’t have to put Fabian into Chandler’s spot if you don’t want to. Cameron can play right back quite well and one of the Mexican based players could also work out there if needed.

      Reply
      • I guess it is just a tradeoff. Which side do want to have Fabian’s skills on and which side do you want to leave lacking? As of now, it is a “pick your poison” situation.

      • Cameron doesn’t want to play right back. He also is not the kind of right back that JK prefers to deploy.

        Geoff is a fine player but as a right back he is NOT Dolo.

      • Mark Hughes has shown that he is an excellent manager and he played Cameron at right back with pretty good results for two seasons before he got Bardsley. I am not advocating Cameron there instead of elsewhere, what I am saying is that if you don’t want to play Chandler and you want to keep F Johnson in midfield, then Cameron is a more than adequate option. I’m still not impressed with Chandler.

      • The US does not set up like Stoke does and besides Hughes is not using Cameron regularly at right back anymore. .

        JK made it clear a very long time ago that Cameron would only be used at right back in an emergency and Geoff doesn’t want to play their either.

        Geoff will most likely never be a #1 starter for the US at any position but he will always be on the 23 man roster because of his versatility.

      • Injury took Dolo and Holden.from the US.

        Loss fo form ( or losing his mind ) took EJ from the US.

        All three would have been very useful in Brazil.

  11. We lost the ball too easily. Both halves the Swiss played better than this USMNT and we were
    lucky after Altidore’s ejection to draw. It’s not the referee but the USMNT that is unconvincing.
    We possessed the ball more under coach Bradley. It really doesn’t look like we’re improving.

    Reply
  12. Only could finish those chances….

    Brooks gave way twice in row…haha…oh well…Brooks should be starter for Gold Cup.

    Morales did gave way the ball and mess-up on Swiss’ goal, but Morales show grit in first half.

    Chandler and Shea were solid and smart.

    Reply
  13. Altidore, I don’t know if they told you but fouls and F – bombs will not give you goals……not even assists lol

    Bradley is not a CAM

    but Bradley is a machine

    Bradley is not a CAM

    but Bradley is a machine

    last but not least, Bradley is not a CAM

    (I actually feel better about this game than the Denmark game…..even if we would have lost the game)

    Reply
    • While I agree Bradley isn’t a world class CAM, you cannot deny that he improves the U.S.’s possession in the offensive half. No other player on our roster can hold the ball and distribute under tight pressure in the attacking half. I think him playing higher up and Williams being effective distributing behind him dramatically improved the US attack. Sure he had some bad passes and giveaways, especially early in the game, but was mainly responsible for the US’s sustained offensive pressure.

      Reply
      • You hit it on the head, No other player on our roster can hold the ball and distribute under tight pressure in the attacking half. That’s why he’s our number 6, our one and only central midfielder, not an attacking midfielder. He is getting better though……

      • I thought Williams did really well today at winning the ball, holding it, and finding outlet passes to relieve pressure. I thought he was very calm and composed. If he can hold down that spot and be effective, why not move Bradley up where he can help sustain some attacking possession and pressure?

      • i think the real solution at least for the Gold Cup perhaps is to use Dempsey as the CF/CAM with MB and DW/Mix playing a pivoting dual CM partnership.

      • The Fox commentators before the match were all saying that Bradley was being used wrong, he’s not a #10, but as usual, people who make that complaint never offer an alternative. There is none on that roster. The best US #10 was in the studio–Stuart Holden. Oh, if only he hadn’t gotten hurt, how much better the US would be. One of the problems with the US is that we really don’t have a good #10 and the two best we’ve ever had were probably John O’Brien (better than even Reyna, IMO) and Holden and they both got badly injured before being able to contribute much.

      • Yessss. However Stu is a 6, even though what made him good on the D side is what ended his career (okay I hope he comes back, the guy is an amazing person).

      • As usual Gary you are missing the point. The point is that Bradley has now been tried there multiple times, and shown that he’s not good there, but JK keeps playing him there. JK is either stubborn or blind or both.

        To answer your question, its not possible to find an alternative unless JK tries other players there for more than a few minutes or a one-off game.

      • How long have you been following the US team? JK has tried numerous guys there. I remember one of the first things he did was bring in Paco Torres who had a great first game, but then faded considerably. I keep pointing out that no one comes up with a good alternative. Who do you think should play that role? I agree that Mikey is better as a defensive mid, but I’m still waitng to see who is a good playmaking mid.And in response to a comment above, Holden started out as a playmaker and that’s where he shined in his few national team appearances. He liked to point out that when he was with Bolton in the EPL he had one of the best records in making successful tackles. He pointed that out because that is not what he was known for.

      • UBG,

        If Mikey had had his normal shooting boots tonight he would have had two goals, easy..

        His first miss should have been a classic Mikey at Herenveen goal, ghosting in on a pull back after arriving late in the box.

        He was doing his normal box to box thing albeit with less time in the defensive side of things.

        I saw no issues with how he was deployed. He’s the captain and the most veteran player on that team so one would have expected him to be more or less everywhere and he was.

        Everyone gets all these weird ideas about what a #10 means.

        All it really means in Mikey’s case is that he is the guy who generally but not always, kicks off the attacking moves in the final half to the third and hopefully is occasionally in the position to finish them. And there are a lot of ways to do that.

        Other than a miraculous return by Stuey, there are no other obvious candidates for the job with Mikey’s stature.

  14. Slow is at it again…

    How many of our players from today’s fixture would be in the Swiss starting line up?
    Which one of our players is an upgrade over his counterpart from Switzerland?
    Which of our players is in a top side featuring regularly?
    How many game changers did we field today? How many game changers did Switzerland field today?

    Reply
    • Well half this team plays in the Swiss league so I wouldn’t categorize them as world beaters or game changers although they certainly have some good players. My point was that the poster who acted like it was an amazing result to get a draw against Switzerland was celebrating a little too much.

      Reply
      • Slow,

        Don’t let em get to you, it isn’t some amazing feat. Its Switzerland, who is about as good as the US should be…and was at the World Cup.

  15. so frustrating to see Jozy do that. he’s supposed to be a leader and that was truly awful. take the yellow, it’s a friendly, and move on.

    that said, that performance was encouraging. with better finishing we have multiple goals. i think Zardes just played himself out of any starting XI though. two games in a row against solid competition that he could not get it done.

    Chandler had a much improved performance and shows his attacking quality. while i think he was solid enough defensively, he has his moments that scare you.

    Williams looked good back there as a #6 and i actually thought Morales did a decent job outside of the blunder on the goal between him, Yedlin, and Alvarado.. but we need wingers out wide so i think he is likely to move back to the bench with FJ back.

    Bedoya with another strong outing. i think in a 4-4-2 you keep him out on the right so Bradley and Williams (or another) can be in the middle.

    as for Brooks, a great performance from him and hopefully people will realize we need him starting every game. he is our CB for present and the future. period. who partners with him is the question. we all know he has his gaffes, and he HAS to fix that, but he is dominate way more often than not.

    Reply
    • Gold Cup lineup thus far:

      ——————-Dempsey——Jozy——————–
      FJ————————————————–Bedoya
      ——————–Bradley—Williams——————–
      Shea———–Brooks———-???———-Chandler
      —————————-Guzan—————————-

      i think Orozco has the lead on RCB but Omar will have something to prove against Mexico while Cameron cannot be forgotten.

      Reply
      • Before that we have Mexico and I suspect Besler and Gonzo (or Jones) will be the CBs for that (non-FIFA) date.

        Jozy–Clint

        Shea – Bradley – Mix – Zusi

        Garza – Besler – Jones – ?

        Rimando

      • yeah most likely. i think Besler is SOL either way though. JAB will be the LCB when the Gold Cup comes around. but Omar will have something to say about RCB.

    • Well, that goes to show you how 2 people can see the same thing and interpret it differently. I thought Zardes looked much better and played pretty well over all. On the chance he missed, from the replay it looked like he had to really stretch to reach the b all and cvould only reach it with the last third of his foot. I also thought Chandler looked pretty bad. Out of position too often, some poor giveaways. I feel much more comfortable with Geoff Cameron or someone else there.

      Reply
      • i certainly don’t chalk up that missed chance as the end-all-be-all, but as a whole, he really didn’t do enough, IMO, to warrant a starting spot. i want him in the team, but i need to see more from him.

        as for Chandler, he had some gaffs, but once again his Opta shows a solid enough game. funny enough, it’s his defensive stats that stand out when looking at Opta. when looking at his distribution, he had too many incomplete passes and crosses for my liking.

        i think the thing with Chandler is we need to give him time. remember his club situation where he never looked that good until he was the go-to guy? what happened then? he got familiar with his backline and has turned into a consistent Bundesliga starter. i think he needs the same with the US.

  16. Not a bad result at all. Especially so considering the circumstances.

    NO ONE would have given the US a draw … against the #12 team in the world … playing with ten … while giving a debut to a young keeper … and giving run outs to players who hardly play for the clubs … and are unfamiliar with each other.

    Good Yanks! Bad Jozy! Improbable result!!

    Reply
    • Geez, talk about low expectations? No one would’ve thought we could draw against Switzerland? I certainly thought we could and should win against them. And we almost did. This is Switzerland we’re talking about, not Germany. Just because it’s a European country doesn’t mean they’re automatically better than the US!

      Reply
      • And conceding a late goal in a friendly wouldn’t be that big a deal except that it seems to happen almost every game.

      • the Swiss are better team than the US because they have better players. look at their players and where they play. they have some very solid, young talent right now.

      • The Swiss are also in the middle of a Euro campaign and as a unit should be more cohesive than this second string US unit.

      • I think it’s close although this is not a full-strength US side. Still I don’t think a draw is some sort of miraculous result.

      • no, it isn’t…but even still, look at their team sheet. i wish we had that many players at clubs like they do. and they actually play.

        either way, i agree a draw isn’t a miraculous result. when we are on our game, we can compete with them for sure. i think the right word is to stick with “could” instead of the stronger “should”.

      • I kind of get tired of repeating myself, but I guess I have to until people learn. Look at history. How many times has the US gotten results when playing a European team in the home? Before Klinsmann it almost never happened. And when playing in the WC in Europe and even playing non-European teams we almost never got a result. I can tell you right now that teams in Switzerland’s bracket for Euro qualifying would be ecstatic to get a draw while playing in Switzerland, especially being a man down most of the second half. Put things in perspective.

      • this should illustrate your point Gary (credit: Paul Carr, ESPN):

        #USMNT has 7 wins/draws in 12 European road games w/ Klinsmann.

        U.S. had 7 wins/draws in 26 Euro road games from 1992-2010.

      • Bryan, anybody can bring out useless stats to try and support a point of view. This is like when Mexicans throw out the overall Mexico vs USA historical numbers, which is dominated by Mexico. But then we throw out the numbers since the year 2000 which is dominated by the USA.

        Point is, the USMNT team was a joke until the year 2000. Soccer didn’t begin to be taken seriously until we were awarded the 1994 World Cup, and then because of the World Cup MLS was established two years later. The year 2000 is a good reference point to say when USA soccer made enough of a transition and entered into a new era of USA soccer.

        Also, we are talking about the current team and the game today. Why do you guys bring up how the USMNT did way back when to defend the current players and coach? How does that make any sense? The fact that the USMNT didn’t win some game in Europe in nineteen-ninety-something shouldn’t make us feel any better or worst about today.

      • Ucla,

        relax. i’m re-circulating something Paul Carr posted that was interesting. you are just missing the illustration being made (or refusing to see the point being made). even if we look at 2000-2010, we’ve still done better in Europe in the last 4 years than ever before.

        and in a conversation about history, using historical stats is acceptable. so calm down. it’s not being presented as why JK is the best coach ever. it’s just a fact.

      • +1 Bryan, UBG is just showing us his public school education

        (BTW- not dissing public schools as much as just dissing UCLA, being a USC Trojan…)

  17. Jozy’s problem with the ref was a lack of consistency. Shakira gets breathed on, goes downa nd its a whistle, numerous times. On two occasions within a minute of a US “Foul” vs Shakira Altidores gets hit, goes down and nothing called. Just before the cards, he is fouled but play continues as he loses the ball. He then reacts with stupid foul, and stupid lack of control. Unacceptable from both parties. But only one of those guys is getting kicked and taken down repeatedly. The other has the responsibility of controlling the game. In my mind Jozy was ill tempered all day, and petulant. The referee was in inconsistent and just as petulant. Mofficials can not show emotion.
    Again, no excuse for both

    Reply
    • i agree all around here, bad look on both parties but the official made it out to be a personal thing.

      Reply
  18. No excuse for a veteran like Altidore to do that, even if he is still young. He is a team leader and needs to lead by example. Even though they lost the lead, great job by the team at the end to work hard and back each other up to hold on for the draw. Much improved performance from the squad. Still work to be done, but much improved. And without Dempsey, Besler, Cameron, Jones, Gonzalez, etc. Zardes still needs some work but the guy will hustle without tiring. Glad to see more pressing from this team.

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  19. Any given Saturday or Sunday… f bombs are dropped 10x a minute.
    Many at the ref…
    What was the difference… Because he said YOU instead of OFF?
    Too harsh imho to do the double yellow like that

    Reply
    • exactly, perhaps a yellow for the foul and a warning for the talking. grow a pair, ref, it’s not personal.

      Reply
    • They should red card both offenses. He only gave a yellow ( a second one of course ).

      Jozy will have to get used to it. MLS seems intent on getting rid of that ugly portion of the game that has crept in over the years.

      Reply
      • Agreed: Red cards are deserved for that kind of crap, whether it’s the norm in Europe, or England, or not.

      • Absolutely agree. Jozy looked like a rec league hot-head out there, and while it wouldn’t get a red card every time, I have no complaints. He’s a veteran now.–but he looked like a punk…. and watching him walk off yelilng “for what?” was just embarrassing.

        I really do like Jozy…. def our best striker by a mile in my view… but I hope he gets the message and moves forward recognizing that F-bombs don’t impress anybody– just stick with the goals.

      • I don’t have any complaints either… just like every sport, officiating is inconsistent.
        It’s like the “unwritten rule” in baseball between catchers and Umpires…. say what you want, but don’t EVER turn around and say it TO me…
        Jozy looked AT him and used YOU… whereas if you watch enough EPL…. You see them say OFF… not YOU…

  20. taking orozco off had a bigger impact than altidores red. absolutely no organization in the backline after that, and the equalizer came from our two outside mids combining to botch a clearance in the box…we are just a dumpster fire

    Reply
    • We watched different games. The US was far from a dumpster fire. They countered well numerous times and controled much of the game even while lacking possession time. Both teams missed chances, probably the US missed more good one. i am frustrated by the late goal, but I am not part of the “we”. Those guys worked hard and always do. I sit and watch and comment.

      Reply
  21. I caught the end of the game. Good job by Yarborough. My oh my Altidore and Yedlin. Altidore scores goals for this team so he can be forgiven for his jawing stupidity but Yedlin may just become a liability if he can’t stick with his man on a set piece. That was bad defense.

    Reply
    • To be fair, someone his size shouldn’t be marking someone in the box anyway…he should be out pressing the short corner.

      Reply
      • Yep! He’s got hops BUT He ain’t out jumping many 6’2″ strikers. Should have been on the post or pressuring the cross.

        I was surprised Ventura or Bradley weren’t marking him…Oh, well.

      • Ventura got his head on the cross and wrongly put it towards his own goal, yedlin actually blocked it and it fell fortunately to the swiss player.

      • i mistook Ventura for Morales. either way, Morales got a head on the ball, good. he hit it toward his own net, bad. yedlin happened to block the ball only for it to fall to the swiss on a platter. I’m not saying yedlin did anything purposefully good but he prevented an own goal. more importantly, morales needs to head that up and out, not backwards.

        oddly enough the two people most at fault were Brooks and Shea, if you watch the replay closely, Shea’s man sneaks backdoor and is the one Morales has to challenge; then Brooks was from the beginning creeping near post leaving his man open behind him. this man went on to tap in the easy goal. yedlin’s only constructive criticism would be to just stay on the line as YarBRUH was telling him to do.

    • Havent seen the game yet but Yedlin has a problem marking anybody. Happens over and over. This is exactly why he will never make it as a player in the UK. Add a few years of bench time and he’ll come limping home to MLS

      Reply
      • since you didn’t watch the game……..

        Yedlin was playing RM. the swiss played a short corner, yedlin was on the post for the corner and came off to challenge the cross, instead, Ventura headed the cross towards his own goal and Yedlin was there to block it only for it to fall to an open Swiss player…. remove Yedlin and this would have been an own goal by ventura; is that what you prefer?

    • i wonder if any other player with 80 caps and only 1 red card would get this much flack from his own fan base…..; especially if this player just scored and assisted in the last game, top 5 all time scorer, etc…..

      Reply
      • I wonder if 80 caps and one red card gives you the right to insult the ref and put your team in a terrible position……..No it does not. He is representing the stars and stripes show some class (and a 3:1 games/scoring rate as a striker playing 98% of the time doesn’t exactly give you “privilege points” anywhere)

      • Brian McBride and Eric Wynalda had worse strike rates than Jozy, but are well regarded among US fans, why I’d Jozy so different

      • Because Eric and Brian were and still are class acts. How many red cards did they receive for dissent? Yeah…remember when McBride got his face bashed in 02? No crying to the refs by him then..

      • I fail to see how that’s relevant to the point I was making about “privilege points”. Jozy has one (soft) red card in 80 games so he’s not a class act? You must have some high standards…

      • well you wanted a comparison between Altidore and McBride / Wynalda. Does a SOFT red card have a different punishment than a HARD red card in terms of the “impact” it has on the match? Hmmmm…..never thought of that

      • Are we talking about the same Eric Wynalda who got red carded for elbowing a dude in the head in the first match of the 1990 World Cup?

      • I bet you Wynalda didn’t look at the ref for a call, chase the guy down, elbow ol’ boy in the head and tell the ref to F-OFF twice…..hahahahahahaha (and I was even there!!!). That was indeed the highlight of the game

      • I have to wonder about anyone who cites Wynalda as a modicum of decorum. I love the guy, but polite he wasn’t. That comment shows a lack of knowledge, IMO.

      • no one ever claimed it gives him the “right” to insult a ref. my point was more to the point that it’s his first red in 80 caps, so why make a huge deal out of it. we all know you’re not supposed to mouth off to a ref, but making it out as if Jozy is a nasty mongrel day in and day out is silly. tons of players show their disdain for a ref’s call. its not gentlemanly but it happens, move on. don’t make it out to be a players recurring problem (another commenter even said jozy’s mouth was holding him back from behind elite…… lol wow…..)

      • Well that’s what you were wondering, so the answer to:
        “i wonder if any other player with 80 caps and only 1 red card would get this much flack from his own fan base”, is yes, he’d still get flack (especially when it almost undid all the hard work of his teammates)

      • For a DOGSO foul probably not. For incredibly petulant, selfish, immature behavior that costs your team a victory, yeah, absolutely.

        It isn’t the mere fact of the red card, but rather how it was acquired that is, in my mind rightly, the genesis of the criticism and I happen to be a huge Altidore supporter having watched him in his RBNY days.

        There is simply no excuse for a professional to behave as he did.

    • His first red in 80 international games; I would say we don’t have to worry. If it is going to happen, this was a good time for it because then we got to see how good Yarbrough is under pressure. Remember how everyone worried about how J Jones would stay on the field during the World Cup? He never was in danger of being sent off despite playing hard. I’m sure it will be the same with Jozy.

      Reply
  22. I have a big problem with that. These are pro footballers, they need to conduct themselves as such, this is not acceptable by any means, we had the game, they were beating a very powerful Swiss team, ranked number 12 in the world, things like this make us look like a mediocre side.

    Reply
      • With a full first team squad yea the US is much better but if we are going off results from the WC the ranking (not that it’s too important) of this side is deserved and it’s mediocre. We can only hope that from all this experimentation and tough matchups the US will emerge stronger.

        The next friendly against Mexico will be important because of the regional rivalry. Klinsmans R & D time is about up.

      • Fair and I agree with you. But nowhere in my post did I mention Bradley or Klinsmann so why did you bring them up? I was simply responding to a false statement made above

      • Well, everyone is entitled to its opinion but I believe JK can make us a top 10 side, we have good players, let´s see.

      • You’re right everyone has their opinion but wow that seems optimistic. I like JK but I don’t see us reaching top 10 even with the best coach in the world until our ability to produce domestic talent improves a good bit. Top 25 seems like a tough but a achievable goal given our player pool. We have 0 superstars. Hell we have 0 players getting playing time on any team with chance to win hardware in the in Europe (top divisions only). How do you make a top 10 team with out any top 10 players?

    • Have you ever seen an EPL game? Guys are mouthing off all the time to each other and refs. The big diff3erence is that they say F off instead of F you. Jozy should have known better, but I thought the ref was rather thin skinned, too. Especially in a friendly refs usually don’t want to send players off since it really is a training exercise most of the time.

      Reply
      • Thin skinned? Sometimes the training exercise needs to be a learning exercise. That way the ref won’t need to teach the same lesson when the game actually matters.

    • it was fault of Altidore for sure, but my only problem with the call is precedence and controlling the game. Jozy had been mouthing off for a while, he should have gotten a yellow earlier instead of hitting him with two later. You don’t let the players get away with it for a while and then call them out on it. More then a few players mouthed off to the refs ( although to be fair, jozy def was the worst) and none of them got so much as a “talking to”.

      Oh, ffs Chandler makes me nervous.

      Reply
      • hard to say, immediately following the actual foul Jozy turned as was mouthing FU repeatedly.

        but overall a player has to know when to stop complaining to a ref. imho still a little harsh, give him a yellow for the foul and a warning for the talking (ref hadn’t warned him, nor anyone else, to this point for complaining).

      • Actually, the referee did have a little chat with Altidore (and a Switzerland player) in the first half.

      • Exactly. Look, Jozy should know better, and it was a total boneheaded and immature reaction by him.
        My point is, several players had mouthed off and really hadn’t been reprimanded in any sort of way. Jozy tested the boundary to the extreme and was punished, but the ref had not made the boundary clear before, or even attempted to.

      • He looked out of sorts today. Usually he doesn’t mouth off like that. Dumb move for a seasoned professional.

      • well noted, Jozy usually is the one laughing with the ref about disagreed calls. he’s never really been the hothead some are now making him out to be.

      • and arguably we had more good chances. could have easily been 2-1 or even 3-2

      • What game were you watching? If each team converted on their quality chances, we would have lost 5-2 easily.

      • Apparently we were not watching the same game either.

        They had one – repeat (1) – decent chance in the first half; got a real dangerous cross in, just didn’t quite get on the end of it. Otherwise we could have easily been up 3-0 at halftime.

        All their real chances came after the red card.

      • Yeah I’m not sure where you get this idea. They were toothless until the red card save for the one chance in the box that Mehmedi fluffed.

      • mr wha?, Zardes missed two chances, Bedoya had a good look from a header at the 6 and MB skied his shot in the box. That’s 4 goals right there, add in the actual goal and there’s 5 potential goals. would you care to point out the 5 chances that SUI had?…… we scholars like to use facts to back up our theses….

      • Donovan hits all four of those goals.

        Even Hat Trick Rick could have handballed at least one in.

      • What are you talking about? we had more scoring chances than the Swiss. Your hatred is blinding you.

      • Yes schadenfreude runs strong on sbi. When one is distant from the field of play and hence the game, it’s easy to forget that there is also a lot of luck involved in these matches, even for the most skilled teams.

      • A man, who happens to play for USMNT, got sent off for two consecutive infractions. Part of the game. When your team is winning, you don’t do that kind of manure.

      • while i still think it may have been a tad harsh to yellow the foul AND the talking (yellow plus a warning could have sufficed), I do agree it’s illogical to argue calls when you’re winning.

      • Well, it was not just the foul and lip service at that moment. Jozy was clearly giving the ref crap all game long. He seemed to have a bug up his you know what all game.

        And it was not just arguing a call – it was Jozy blatantly saying FU and who knows what else. In this case, i do not blame the ref.

        I hate when he gets in these moods. Very frustrating after a solid individual game vs. Denmark.

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