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USMNT 1, Panama 1: Match Highlights

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  1. The game was more important and telling for Panama, who landed behind Haiti in the table, and now has to wait and make sure the 3rd place slots fall right for them.

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      • Self serving, interventionist Imperialism at its most blatant…. but, there is the small detail that Panama would not exist as a nation if not for the canal and the Yanqui meddling. Colombia has the bigger gripe as the US funded, backed a single purpose revolution to split from Colombia, form Panama and then sign an agreement to build the canal shortly thereafter. Took a whole century to gain sovereignty over the canal, but….. its a economical boon to the country.

  2. The lineup screamed experiment and contractual obligation game and we kind of played like it. We’d already advanced in first place so it meant nothing.

    I didn’t mind people getting a chance in a pointless game for us, but why waste time on more Morales and Wondo stints? The former has never played well and the latter has been exposed as not ready for prime time. If you’re going to experiment, experiment, don’t waste time on people who rarely play well for us.

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      • On Belize and Cuba, be real please. I’m not sure they’re even MLS level.

        Golden opportunity against Belgium he blows. On a platter.

      • “Acclimated?” Zardes came in later and is already a force. It’s an all star team for performers. I don’t understand the development ethos when I don’t even see flashes.

        In contrast, the mercurial Green has scored on Belgium and shown some speed and skill. Uneven some other nights. OK, give that some time to play out. But Morales never looks good. Looking good is the basis for being called to these sorts of teams. If you can’t look good we go find someone else.

      • firstly, i think acclimating to a new team gets progressively harder the further back on the field you’re playing. generally speaking, forwards get acclimated pretty easily, mids take longer, and defenders need substantial minutes. that’s not to say that morales hasn’t been disappointing (he’s an absolute beast for ingolstadt), but it’s worth noting.

        secondly, zardes is “already a force”? really? he’s had one nice assist, a lot of running around (which can be helpful at times), and some pretty bad touches and giveaways. i’m rooting for him, but he’s got a long way to go to establish himself as a decent international player.

      • Zardes scored in the Holland game, and was involved in both the second, killer goal against Haiti and the equalizer against Panama. Yes, already a force.

        Morales does nothing of note when played, like many marginal players you never hear from. He has received several callups to work on his game. I think he now needs to go improve professionally and earn his way back. I see nothing that suggests he should be retained to develop because he is integral to our future.

      • yes, i noted he had the assist against haiti. to say he was involved in the panama goal is technically correct, in that the ball did bounce off him somewhere in there. and yes, he’s scored one goal in 10(?) international caps, if i recall correctly. i’m assuming you also think altidore’s also been a force lately.

        this is the last i’ll say on the subject (alright, for today), since my point is not to criticize zardes, who’s been one of our better players this tournament.

      • revision: no idea what i was thinking of on the panama goal–he absolutely had a hand in it, and the ball certainly didn’t just “bounce off him”.

      • “Zardes scored in the Holland game, and was involved in both the second, killer goal against Haiti and the equalizer against Panama. Yes, already a force”

        By that standard, Woods and Morris are already “forces”..

      • Fitting in right away is a little bit simpler for forwards.

        Green was told go out and score a goal. That is clear and straight forward enough.

        So far JK has had more hits than misses with these young guys but it takes more time with midfielders.

        JK hasn’t quite figured out yet where Morales fits best. Does he replace Beckerman? Or does he do more of a hybrid thing like Mix? Could he be more of an attacking mid like Bedoya? Maybe he could be a right back?

        Mix, for example,is only now beginning to show his worth.

        You are right that national teams have no time to actually “develop” players but working them into the team picture, especially in a midfield with a lot of moving parts in terms of candidates, is just going to take time.

        Morales has 11 caps in 2 years . By the time Shea had 11 caps most of you wanted him hung in effigy.. Brek is far from wonderful but I would say most people are glad he is still in the team picture. .

        All indications are Morales does very well at Ingolstadt and my guess is he does well in training with the US since they keep bringing him back.

        The US is not so deep they can afford to discard talented players.

    • Morales is now cap-tied because of this game. I think that, as well as an opportunity to rest others prior to the knockout rounds, was worth it. He’s only 25, a bit pre-mature to count him out for the upcoming WC cycle.

      Otherwise – yes it was a janky line-up.

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  3. Altidore left out of squad moving forward likely due to a lack of match fitness. I don’t see it as a “vote of confidence” from Klinsmann. This blog annoys me in that it is obviously quite bias in its support of all things USMNT. The positive story writing irks me, in that it is truly not representative of the USMNT players, coaches or human behavior in general for that matter. I think writing unbiased stories about the “real” issues such as through opinion pieces will lend more support, opinion, controversy, to the parody that exists below the surface that many fans truly love. I’m truly going to stop reading this blog for this reason. Good day gentlemen and thank you Ives for growing the sport/culture of soccer in the US. Peace!

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      • He’s been out of the 2014 WC and 2011 and 2013 GC for hammy issues. 2010 WC he flat out disappeared. He wasn’t hurt. I am so sorry I inaccurately suggested he lets us down in big tournaments because he is injured. Sometimes he shows up THEN disappears on the actual field. How horribly unfair of me.

      • In 2010 he played well but was unlucky.

        He should havwe scored vs England and it was his cross that allowed Dempsey the shot whose rebound became “that goal” for LD vs Algeria.

        Jozy also provided the headed assist that Mikey scored from vs Slovenia.

        Jozy also scored vs Spain in the 2009 Confederations Cup.

        He’s not great but he isn’t the total international failure you describe.

        Now Terrance Boyd, your anointed Jozy successor, there is a different story.

      • Altidore is occasionally productive in friendlies, qualifiers, and stuff like the 2009 confed cup. But those are appetizers. The GC and WC are the main course. Without fail when the big money is on the table he exits hurt or is not the same player.

        I wouldn’t say Boyd is my anointed successor anymore. I liked him and I do think Altidore is not our big tournament striker we need, but Jozy continues to get these chances because no one else steps up and steals his job.

  4. The second half was much better than the first, for sure, but the team still seemed a step slow overall; their decision making was often sluggish, which led to a ton of needless turnovers, and they were out hustled to a lot of 50/50 balls. They have to find a way to pick up the tempo and match the intensity of the other squad, or they will not win this tournament.

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    • Agreed. I’ve been giving them a little bit of a pass to get their act together through the group stage. They do have 7 points, they did win the group with a game to spare, but it’s put up or shut up time now. Here’s hoping for a break-out performance in the quarterfinals.

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