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Siebatcheu winner helps USMNT edge Honduras

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The U.S. Men’s National Team found itself in a dogfight on Thursday, delivering a subpar overall performance that looked like it might open the door for a brutal defeat.

That was before Jordan Siebatcheu entered the match, coming off the bench to head home an 89th-minute winner in a 1-0 victory. The victory now sets the Americans up with a Nations League final showdown on Sunday against Mexico, which defeated Costa Rica in a penalty shootout in the other semifinal on Thursday night.

The Young Boys striker came off the bench late in the second half and needed only one moment to break the deadlock. John Brooks’ upfield pass was headed across the box by Weston McKennie, allowing Siebatcheu the chance to send a diving header past Anthony Lopez.

The USMNT failed to truly pressure Honduras for most of the semifinal showdown, with Josh Sargent and Christian Pulisic having the best offensive chances. Sargent rose highest to head Antonee Robinson’s cross towards goal in the 30th minute, but Lopez dove to repel the forward’s effort.

Sargent showed off his defensive ability not long before his offensive opportunity, clearing Alberth Elis’ header off the line in the 27th minute. The Werder Bremen striker got back after Zack Steffen was caught out of position and flicked the winger’s looping header away from goal.

Lopez would deny Pulisic’s effort in the 29th minute from a tight angle while also seeing Gio Reyna’s earlier effort in the opening minutes glance just wide of the post.

Edwin Rodriguez and Maynor Figueroa both had opportunities saved by Steffen in the second half while Elis’ had a stoppage time chance denied by the Manchester City goalkeeper. Steffen finished the match with four saves to preserve the clean sheet and help the Americans reach a first tournament final since the 2019 Gold Cup.

The USMNT will be searching for its first trophy since the 2017 Concacaf Gold Cup.

Comments

  1. This team is soft. They are weak. They have no fight. As maligned as Michael Bradley was, he wasn’t afraid to get stuck in.

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  2. So imagine if Sargent hadn’t saved that chance off the line. They were already diving and wasting as much time as possible. If they had scored there would not have been another minute of competitive soccer played. They had already effectively wasted about 20 min of time which was given as 5 min of stoppage. You never get the full time wasted back or teams wouldn’t bother to do it. I hope they now understand what it means to be behind goals in Concacaf and take their chances accordingly.

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  3. It is a weird trend on this site to rip on players, that are marginal players working their tails off for the US, rather than supporting them.

    THEN back that up with a free pass for the players with a ton of talent who touch the ball 30 times a game ( Pulisic, in case you couldnt figure it out….or maybe missed that he was even on the field ) or others that can’t be bothered to play mediocre D while Hunduras has chance after chance.

    but RIP AWAY, I will get you started. Thank God Roldan didnt play!

    In the end the US was lucky to win that, after getting DESTROYED by Elis and that isnt me trolling. not looking for responses. Couldnt care less for arguing opposing views….open to reading em, but just stating what I saw.

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    • Elis is a goon and hack Brooks should have flattened his ass on numerous occasions As the ref typical of Concacaf forgot he had cards in his pocket. Yeah I was not impressed with the US tonight but it was a learning experience let’s hope they figure it out real quick that this is what concha calf is all about fucking getting hacked dealing with shitty refs and grinding out a win. Maybe it’ll be a prettier match against Mexico one we’re both teams are open to playing soccer and not some type of sunbathing karate kicking bullshit. Yeah I’m over the top but it gets tired 30 years of watching this type of shit tends to really irritate you think I’d be used to it by now but I guess not.

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  4. I think we see a fresh Musah vs. Mexico get the opportunity to run in the spaces in a more open game that will be nasty, and he’ll get fouled a lot. if Adams can or can’t go, still a midfield shakeup in store for the final imo, or some change to cover the 6 with another player or system. another idea is to drop Weston back and invert the triangle in there with 2 6s instead of just one in the current look. @jayam mentioned something like this in the tailgate, good call imo if Adams can’t go

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  5. Beerholder needs to change the formation to: 3-5-2-1.
    This formation will more freedom Dest attack and Robinson deliver crosses.
    McKennie, Musah, sadly Yueill in the middle.
    Reyna as #10 and Pulisic as rooming winger (playing any open side).

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  6. did you see how whacking goal kicks downfield worked for honduras? it’s like we make everything harder than it has to be. you will not be judged harshly if you don’t work passes from endline to endline and have everyone touch the ball before shooting like we’re doing scrimmage drills with limitations.

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    • at least do it some of the time! I don’t get it at any level of soccer; have to read and react not robotically construct every time. plus it opens up the spaces we’re trying to play into when playing out on the ground.

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      • shorten the field. i can start the play from the endline or from 40 yards from their goal. shrink the number passes you need to get to goal. more passes is more chances to screw up, particularly with this bunch. remove pressure from our keeper and defense to pass and create — as it was we got away with a deflected keeper kick — and place pressure faster on the deeper elements of the opposing defense.

        it also adds a different aerial feature to the offense, some variety, and we had a goal yesterday off a pair of headers from a lofted ball. we have height. we hit crosses in at their goal. so why can’t we sometimes loft it our end? may go back to they seem to avoid clearing balls out in the air, which while laudable in theory may increase the risks of mistakes and getting caught in possession.

    • Beerholder thinks we can play tiki-taka like Barca. All of the numbers and analysis show your odds of scoring while playing out of the back are minuscule. Whatevs.

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    • Did you also see them kick it straight out of bounds 3 or 4 times or right to an American? Every way to play has advantages and dis advantages. Our three forwards are pretty average in the air so hitting long balls would definitely have its drawbacks too. The GC needs to be a tryout for new Adams backups though because we’ve seen Yueill and Acosta can’t do against ocho level Concacaf opponents. Flach, Busio, and Sands maybe Kayo or Kobe Hernandez Foster since both essentially missed the entire season with Covid shuttering German youth leagues.

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      • “average in the air?” did you watch the winner? how many header goals in recent years? several. rubbish. we’re fairly tall. might want the 9 or CAM up for it and not wings but that’s just picking where to kick.
        also, off the top of my head, a nice easy goal on chile where we flicked on a keeper punt. like two passes counting the punt. god forbid we make this easier.
        conversely, what good has come of all the buildup, from 5 yard rollers to defenders to start the attack. what are the pluses on that so far? like we want to make it as hard as possible. team sitting on its own 1 yard line running the ball between the tackles. good luck.

      • Our three starters Pulisic, Sargent, and Reyna are not great in the air. Of course I don’t know why I bother because if we come out and play long balls you’d argue we should play out of the back. I’m really impressed that you had international quality CBs in your rec league that you and your team were able to bypass with long balls and flick ons. In my 6 year olds game last week they had a kid dribble the entire length of the field and score a goal dribbling around each defender some even twice. I mean if a 6 year old can do it why can’t the NT.

    • I have pointed this out several times in the past, but it apparently bears repeating. When Klinsmann was coach and he played Guzan and Zardes at left wing, His standard approach was to have Guzan kick the ball to Zardes about midfield and Zardes would head it to a forward. I think it worked over half the time and if you lose the ball, it was beyond midfield. It was obviously something they worked on a lot in practice because Guzan’s kick was on target probably 90% of the time.

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      • i used to take goal kicks in college and adult league. maybe you might want to practice the runs off the flick but a lot if it is simply who you have take the kick. IMO if you pick the right person someone who can hit an instep drive over distance should be able to drop it right on the desired head. long way of saying i don’t think it’s that much practice.

    • Gary and IV: you can bet Berhalter has done the math and determined that playing out of the back is more efficient than hitting long balls. In college or Sunday league your teammates are probably not as technical as professionals so it may well have worked better for your team.

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  7. i’ve decided the CAMs should be pulisic and reyna. both because they look better than the actual CAMs when they cut in, and because what we lacked last night — that honduras had — was pure wide speed. we do need the technical element but we also need an element that doesn’t take 20 passes to move the ball upfield. every possession is labored keepaway.

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    • similarly, they need a player or two at least on the bench who can hit a 25-30 yard shot accurately to the cage corners. another antidote to having to laboriously pass the ball all the way in is someone who top of the D can slam shots at the corners, make some, maybe get some cheap goals off keeper blocks. did i say we could use cheap goals against good teams?

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    • This is another reason why I think Klinsmann was right to play Zardes at wing. He would often get behind defenses and then make good back passes to teammates in the box. Zardes also provides a lot of help defense.

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  8. That was definitely a CONCACAF match. For a young squad, they mostly kept their cool, but you could see the clipping of ankles, etc. in full effect. Yueill was frustrating to watch at times as he kept trying to force passes forward and that would lead to Honduras counter attacks. Or I kept seeing a space he needed to be at to open up pass options for the defense, but he’d just stay close to a Honduran player instead and we were on offense. The kid needs to learn more still. Hopefully Adams will be good to go for the final.

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    • we force too many passes like we have a countdown clock in our heads. sometimes the balls forward, sometimes the impulse to one-touch backwards, start several of the opposing counters. we also have a childish tendency to literally play the pass straight upfield, which is easy to defend. make triangles, shift defenders around and find angled balls.

      speaking to my “missing speed element” comment above, one missing thing is the ball over the top, including the diagonal ball we got the goal off of. i have actually seen us do variations on that play going back to gold cup, but not much lately. everything cannot be a short ball to a man right near you.

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    • I think our lack of playing together and little international experience was evident in the decision making and the passing. This was true of many of our players. Honduras played better as a team than we did, moving the ball crisply when they got it. Our players seem too hesitant too often, not knowing whether it keep dribbling or pass it and unsure of where to pass it.

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      • nope. don’t buy it. lack of familiarity would not stop me from taking risks playing downfield or over the top. instructions to not do it would. watching us reminds me of HS practice scrimmages after the coach ordered us to (a) roll goal kicks to defenders and then (b) defenders must keep the ball on the ground. ditto the offense, which looks like a team at practice ordered to have everyone touch the ball before taking a shot. sorry, but i personally as a defender would routinely short cut all this and play downfield into space for my wings and forwards. if you don’t you have probably been told not to. if you favor short mid balls over taking risk, you were probably told to.

        i’d buy unfamiliarity more if we were taking risks and trying to combine and overlap.

  9. Wow Honduras flopping like a school of Tuna until they went down a goal. Then magically not one went down the rest of the game. Reyna jukes a defender and makes him look stupid, defender takes him out, not even a foul. This was Concacaf all the way. We needed this experience in the worst kind of way. These guys playing in Europe at a high level needed to know that there is no beautiful game in Concacaf.

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    • I was thinking that too, this experience is great for our guys. I thought the NL was pointless but these games are very important ahead of the qualifiers.

      Reyna is going to be key.
      He can unlock these dreadful teams and win many set pieces.
      I also think Jordan will be as well.
      Jordan is an in the box, Chicharito type finisher. Time will tell if Jordan is starter material. But btwn him and Dike, its a really good thing to have challengers to Sargent. Josh, admire him for his work rate but hes gotta do better as a target fwd.

      Sundays game will be interesting for sure. As good as Brooks is, he will always make me nervous in big games – Jekyl and Hyde that guy.

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  10. WOW, This has to be very very frustrating for Josh Sargent….

    9:29 – Reyna beautifully takes on three players but the goes for goal with SARGENT ALL BY HIMSELF in front of goal

    28.31 – Sargent saves the US from a SURE GOAL will a millisecond off the line save!!!

    29:08 – Perfect cross from Dest to connect with Sargent in the air – saved by Lopez

    29:23 – Reyna to Pulisic with Sargent WAITING BY HIMSELF back post goes for goal himself

    The kid did more than people give him credit for….his involvement in play, movement off the ball, smart runs in the box…those around him need to do better in getting the ball to him.

    We cannot play like this against a selfless team like Mexico….

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    • You forgot: gets subbed late and his sub gets the winning goal lol

      Agree with posters that Sargent does a ton of dirty work and has been unlucky/starved of service. Maybe he could see time out wide or midfield with Siebatcheu at striker?

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      • He got the one and only good feed in the game. Sargent got next to none. That onr header does not make him a starter in my mind. Had Sargent not saved a sure goal we go to PKs

    • So…what happens when Reyna finally relaxes enough that he sees Sargent and just makes it routine?

      Because you feel that day is coming, with him. The sense I get with Reyna is he still has that Young Guy chip on his shoulder, hasn’t really settled into his skin yet, but when he does, he’s going to have that same kind of majestic quality his dad did…but with just a whole lot more speed and skill on the ball. Dude just sort of glides, and I don’t think he’s nearly topped out yet. I think in the next 2-3 years Reyna might evolve into something well-nigh approaching unstoppable.

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    • I thought that at first on the 9th minute play but I think that’s hard when Reyna is under pressure and Sargent is close to being offside. Gio doesn’t have time to judge so the best play is to shoot. If he passes and Sarge is offside people would scream why pass from there. If takes time to check the defense’s position and is tackled off the same thing.

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  11. – After watching games in Europe during the pandemic, I had forgotten how bad it was with CONCAFAF competition and officiating. Endless flopping, harsh tackles,indifferent officiating, unenjoyable.
    – Berhalter is using the NL to simulate upcoming WCQ. Each Int’l break will require 3 games instead of 2. It seemed most of the US players held up well despite playing Switzerland just a few days ago. We’ll see after the Costa Rica friendly how effective was the strategy.
    – Priority #1 for the Gold Cup is to begin to groom a backup for Adams. Cardoso and Perea are about a year away from making an impact, but it is time to get started.
    – Sargent is a workhorse. Does he get enough credit after saving that goal off the line? The US needs him on the field.
    – Mexico drew 0-0 with Costa Rica, and won on PKs. No surprise – lots of scrums, dirty tackles, and weak officiating. We’ll need a good referee on Sunday to keep things under control.

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    • Yes, after having slept on it….this was a CONCACAF game through and through. So was the the other semi-final. This was also a HUGE lesson to the kids who have never played this type of game and a reminder to fans of just what a slog it is to play against the Honduras and Costa Ricas as opposed to Jamaica’s cobbled together never played together British lower league imported team or Panama’s rebuilding side. It seemed GB prepared the team for this type of battle. There was minimal frustrated body language (as with the Switzerland game) and a more focused workman mentality (execution set aside). Now to switch gears and get ready for a faster and more open game with Mexico who will be more clinical finishers, not get in each other’s way (at times Honduras getting in their own way was the best US defense) and come with something to prove against a US team that gets all the attention and has been given the “golden generation” label.

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    • The way concacrap is they’ll send a ref out that will give the US a straight red for a professional foul. It really is amazing it seems like everyone other than the US has many liberties the foul as much as they want and become ultra physical. At one point in the match yesterday the US had been called for something like seven fouls where is Honduras had one eventually the raft had to square things and did call fouls as they were blatant from Honduras.
      Can’t remember the name but number 23 good fucking Lord never seen a guy go to the ground so often and kick from the ground it was like watching sunbathing karate just ridiculous a guy like that would’ve been carded in any other league quickly. The reality is I don’t expect a damn thing to change with refereeing in this region it’s ashamed but it is what it is sadly.

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  12. This game underscores how important Tyler Adams is to this team, as in the most important player. Without him, we are so disjointed in building up attacks, so vulnerable on counters and just really weak in the middle of the field. McKenzie is a welcome addition, but we need a couple more actual defenders out there, can’t rely on two players to do all the defending. Hopefully time and experience will help our young stars become more clinical, they are creating chances but just not putting any away. Honduras was much better than I expected.

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    • If we don’t have a competent back up to Adams at the 6 we need to play a a 3-5-2 when he is not available. First priority in high pressure one of games is to gain a result. you can’t lose if you don’t concede goals. There is no shame in being stout in the back and hitting teams on the counter. Pulisic in space in transition is literally what he is best at. If Yueill can’t be competent at home against a squad like Honduras, he shouldn’t be on the team. If Berhalter insists on playing a 4-3-3 when Adams in unavailable, then he should just move McKinnie to the 6 if he can’t find a competent back up. The drop off between Adams and the current back ups is to large and much larger than the drop off will be between Mckinny and his back ups.

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    • amen, preach the gospel. my concern is games like this where brooks or dest does one positive thing to offset several shaky or outright bad moments, do not balance out the same against even tougher opponents. the GF against honduras or northern ireland turns into GA and L against better teams.

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    • My concern with the 3-5-2 is that Berhalter will be tempted to send his outside players up field and leave the defending to the 3 CB’s. Without Adams, I see that as a problem waiting to happen. It can work with Adams, IMO, but not without.

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      • If you don’t send the FBs forward then it’s just a 5 man backline and we definitely won’t score. Honduras is putting 8 behind the ball and Panama, Trinidad and El Salvador will put 10 behind the ball and you’re going to attack that with 5 attackers so the FBs and CBs can stay back? At some point we just have to play better in the formation we’re in.

      • “definitely won’t score” is over-stated. you would be playing for a goal or two but it worked for france and mexico 2018. the difference between them and other recent games is the numbers back got you the 0 or 1 GA where you are still in the game. we led concacaf with 17 GF in last hex playing a 4321. we might put in 4 instead of 6 on panama but i will take that tradeoff to beat mexico 1-0.

  13. Gotta call out the overall play here. Everything looked flat, from the square passing out of the back, to the line of mids and forwards waiting for a pass instead of checking to the ball/coordinating and combining like good teams do. So much disconnection, and so then you have Pulisic overdoing it by coming back all the way into the first third. This does not look like an effective system with crisp patterns of play. This looks awful. John Brooks had to be playmaker, last defender, and passing mid all at the same time. So frustrated to see this. No flow no cohesion. Yuck.

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    • McKennie was almost invisible until the header. He needs to make a bigger impact. I do think the problem is with the initial play out of the back and lack of a pure goal scorer. US fans were so spoiled for so long with Michael Bradley’s play that so many took it for granted and crapped all over him. Not having a midfielder like him to essentially (yes, I’m going to do it) play quarterback left that responsibility to Brooks. Problem is Brooks is also the last line of defense. I hope some MB haters can perhaps now see how important he was. I’d say the same about Altidore. This game was screaming for a 6 like MB to get himself on the ball to start build-ups, maintain possession and be a release valve and a 9 like Jozy whose hold up play and distribution and natural goal scoring (3rd most USMNT goals) would have made a huge difference. I’m not saying either needs to come back. This is more of an appreciation post and a calling out of haters.

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      • Hate to say it, but my big problem with Siebatcheu is, until he popped up and scored that goal is, he’s TOO INVISIBLE. The dude’s huge, I want him in there mixing it up in the box, bullying, getting on the end of stuff, winning headers, and all too often, he just…lurks. We’ve got 70% possession, we own the ball, our guys just need somewhere to put the ball at the end, BE THAT END POINT. This is CONCACAF, this is International soccer, the tactics are more basic, we need a basic striker. That’s honestly why I really think Dike is the best option, much as Lukaku is helping Belgium domininate the International scene right now, because he’s the guy the Waffles just dump everything to.

        I think Gold Cup is going to prove my point, when Dike scores about 17 goals in 5 games. People will go, “Yes, but CONCACAF.”

        Yes. That’s the point. We play in CONCACAF. And in International soccer. These are not the prettiest of games. We need guys who get in there and get those goals however you gotta go get them, and Dike, to me, is that guy.

    • other than reyna and pulisic sometimes swapping sides there is little combination/wall play and little position interchange. everyone is kind of in their channel. mids, wings, and for that matter sargent never makes a run out of the middle to clear space, just shows to the ball. odd for a 433. we have so many “slash” multi-position type players it’s odd we play very positional.

      defense, same thing. being in their zonal slot seems to matter more than marking someone, ever. people like elis have to be marked by someone and perhaps 2 someones.

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      • re the positional defense, i don’t know how many goals we have allowed where the whole back line is in fact back but is in a line on the 6 while someone makes a spot run. somewhat the DM’s fault but we’ll have 5 back and they will score with a crosser and a runner to the PK spot because no one is marked, everyone is crisply in line.

      • You nailed it on the lack of quick passing interchange. It’s the key to our lack of offense. As it is now, it is too easy for defenders to press and keep close to their man.

  14. Can we talk about the real worst part of the night. The US jerseys! Come on Nike are you even trying? Bring back the hoops.

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  15. Too many errors by the US, play was to o slow on offense. I didn’t keep score, but it seemed like we had more errant passes than Honduras did. Hopefully that is due to the fact that the whole team hasn’t played together. Their passing interchange was poor and they often slowed down play when it wasn’t necessary. Lletget service on free kicks was much worse than usual and I thought he had a poor game. Some good crosses by Robinson and Dest looked better at RB while Brooks and McKenzie seem to be a good combo. And would somebody please tell US players that you can’t be offsides on a throw in. At least 3 times they had throw ins about 20 yards from the end line of Honduras and nobody ever made a move to the open space behind the defense, but instead it was a short throw and then a short return to the thrower. The best news of the night is that Mexico didn’t look all that good and struggled to defeat Costa Rica, having to go to penalty kicks after a 0=0 finish in 90 minutes. Finally, I want to give a shout out to the referee in our game. I’m always glad to see him because he is always fair, keeps the game moving, but keeps it under control. By contrast, at the end of the Mexico-CR game the ref lost control and they had 2 major brawls. Both times the ref just stood there and watched and didn’t even give out a card after the second one.

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    • He did actually give Moreno one for the initial shove, but no one for the shoving/chokeholds afterward. Some of that is on VAR and the ARs though he can’t see everything. Should have been a couple more yellows to CR for persistent fouling of Lozano and to Mexico who just started hacking down Campbell and that would have probably prevented the fighting later. Seems silly that Jermaine Jones once got a straight red for gentle touching someone’s face in Copa America after seeing those two melees tonight. Bet if the US playing well either Guardado or Herrera start something with McKennie on Sunday.

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    • Mexico couldn’t put away their chances either however they created more and their speed of play was something the US hasn’t seen for a long long time. The game was wide open too. If the game with the US is that open it will be fun too watch and come down to which team can find its scoring boots.

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      • I’d say Mexico looked good in the first half, but they were bad in the 2nd. Not sure if it was frustration or tiredness. Campbell was the best I’ve seen him in some time for 60 mins for CR but he definitely ran out of gas.

    • Oshane Nation from Jamaica, good call man. don’t know if you saw Cruz Azul v. Santos in the Mexican final last weekend but there was a brawl at the end of that game, and the Cruz Azul coach Reynoso was in the middle of it….

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  16. Yuell has definitely had better games but he was awful tonight. If you watch the game back take notice of how many times Brooos was pointing to him to move to a different spot. It felt like he was either in the way, clogging up passing lanes and not making himself available (standing between the two forwards) when there were 10 yards of open space behind him or giving the ball away too easy on forward passes. How many times was he either dispossessed in dangerous spots or gave the ball away too easily? I’d estimate at least 10. It wasn’t until late in the game when mckennie started dropping deeper to give 2 outlets from the back that things started ticking a bit more. I’m over that experiential. His long diagonal passing does not make up for his deficiencies and Brooks and Mckenzie are good enough passers from the baclnthat Yuell doesn’t add enough. Sargeant had a great defensive header to clear the line bit he doesn’t offer enough going forward. All of his hold up play resulted in drops to Yuell orLletget that ended up nowhere. Brooks is not a good defender with an attacker running at him with the ball. Good was solid. Dest is better on the right. Robinson was good. I don’t know why Musah isn’t getting game time. Lletget clogs up a lot of the spaces that mckennie and pulisic wanted to occupy. Mckenzie was good. Berhalter got bailed out. He made no adjustments tactically and all of his subs were like for like and too late. Cannon looked really unatjletic out there and over matched. Pulisic was largely responsible for slowing the tempo down too much. He held the ball too long too often tonight. I wanted them to win but towards the end felt like a loss might have meant more progress long term and a real look in the mirror moment.

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  17. Honestly i’d rather have Bradley as a back up to Adams than Yueill. Basically Will Trapp and Yuiell should be 6th string and further. Musah isn’t a defensive midfielder in my mind–we don’t have too many N’Golo Kante players let alone backups to Adams. I’d rather have Bradley back just for insurance, his defense, and ability to make the easy pass. I think when he was starting we didn’t yet have the talent we now have in the attacking midfield/wings, so perhaps it would be interesting to experiment with.

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      • Willing to listen to other opinions, but who would be a better option than Yueill if not Bradley when Adams is injured?

    • There’s no depth there. For a while MB90 was the best player in CONCACAF but that was 2009-2013. Now he is just too slow. I’d rather have McKennie play the #6 to back up Adams. It’s not his best position but he’s better than any other player in the pool besides Adams and it frees up a spot for Aaronson or Musah.

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    • This is a convo I think is important. Couple of questions, we have to ask ourselves, tho. 1) What’s the profile of a 6?, 2) personnel/depth?, 3) What players have the ability to execute their responsibilities in a 4-3-3? I got 7 categories: 1-Ball winning/stopping counters type of 6 (Kante- France, Fernandinho- Brasil, Declan Rice-England, Dos Santos-Mexico) 2-Stay home/protect CBs type of 6 (McTominay-Scotland, Delaney-Denmark, Kovacic-Croatia, Rodri-Spain), 3- Attacking Athletic 6 (Casemiro-Brasil, Bellingham-England, Witsel, Tielemanns-Netherlands, Sissoko-France, Carvalho-Portugal), 4-Metronome/pivot, playmaker 6 (Busquets, Alcantara-Spain, Jorginho-Italy), 5-combo 1-2 play type of 6 (Rabiot-France, Joao Mountinho-Portugal, Paredes-Argentina, Brozovic-Croatia), 6- Converted 6s (Fabinho-Brasil, Emre Can-Germany, Nzonzi-France, Edson Alvarez-Mexico, Kimmich-Germany) 7- Can play 6 or the 8 (Vidal-Chile, Guardado-Mexico, Gundagon-Germany) I put the US player depth and what category I think they fall! 20 players- Bradley (4), Morales (5), Trapp (2), Acosta (3), Yueill (4), Adams (1), Servania (2), Otasowie (5), Perea (5), Cardoso (2) EPB (6), McKennie, Roldan, K. Parks, Musah (7) are players capped. Canouse (2), Durkin (4), Sands (6), A. Morris (1), H. Dotson (7),

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      • Busio (attacking), Mose Nyeman (6 or 8), Taylor Booth (seems not to be a 6 but played there some this season), Kobe Hernandez Foster. These four have all played YNTs and have played some 6 as well. Busio is hard to judge as a 6 because he often gets so much time and space in MLS that you don’t get in int. play.

      • Forgot Flach as well. There is some grassroots push for Pomykal but I’d want him to play that role for club a few times first. He’s gritty enough but I’m not sure he’s physical enough.

    • I’d rather have the Bradley of…. even 2 years ago but… I watched a Toronto game this past weekend and was shocked at how slow and lumbering Bradley is now. Thank you very much for your service… enjoy retirement. The thing is, we don’t have ideal fully formed options but we do have better options. I’d even take a 19 year old Busio over Yueill. Acosta clearly is not a 6.

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  18. need to bury some chances, broken record but there it is. in any case, great game to win and great experience for the youngsters. CONCACAF may suck but these games are tough challenges. Rodriguez went for the leg breaker on Sergino and only got a yellow. Thought it was Dest’s best game until switched over to the left and told to go forward; he played a solid game at RB. Gio did everything but score and also got mauled out there. Yueill, man, no mas por favor

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    • they miss the dempsey element of someone tough enough to be involved in holdup play but technical enough to put shots in the corners. sargent in theory could be technical enough but i think he lacks the dominating physical presence. if not that they need either someone faster or more physical.

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  19. One moment of pure class from Brooks, McKennie and Siebatcheu. Tons of garbage from Yuell. Poor guy couldn’t find the guys with the blue jerseys on any pass going forward. Can’t Musah do better?

    Defense is a problem. Was an issue versus the Swiss and although Dest shifting right helped to somewhat plug that hole, others opened up. Honduras had the 2nd and 3rd best scoring chances among both teams and another 3 of top 10. Yikes.

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    • It’s not Musah’s position it’s like saying can’t we just put McKennie as the 6. They have the physical traits but you’re taking away their best attributes if you play them there. McKennie doesn’t head the gw to Pefok if he’s the 6. Musah isn’t a great passer he’s better at carrying the ball forward so if he dribbles as the 6 he leaves a big whole behind. Having Musah who came up as #10 and played as a wide midfielder last season, try to learn a new position on the fly is a big ask for an 18 year old. Hopefully we see Flach and Busio get a chance during GC.

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      • I understand for McKennie, who always has the urge to push forward, but Musah hasn’t been charging at the goal exactly in the handful of games that I’ve seen him play. If he’s not on the wing for USMNT, per coach’s choice, and not underneath the striker, where exactly is his spot in central mid? He may as well hang back and break up some plays. He’s strong on the ball and does not panic. I’d rather give him a shot over Yuell who is poised to give Mexico a dozen scoring chances if he stays in the lineup

  20. Dest is definitely dangerous. To both teams.
    I feel like everything going wrong is right where Adams is going to snuff it out when he gets back, so I’m not despairing about the midfield just yet. Also Musah looks so solid when he gets in I wonder how he is losing to Youell.
    Obviously we don’t see everything.
    I think Sargent has had his chance. Everyone praises his hold-up play. Tell me: how often do you hear about hold-up play when you’re talking about Suarez, Lewandowski, Haaland? You don’t, because they’re goal machines. Let’s lose the faint praise for Sargent, cut the cord, and get a goal scorer in there.

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    • I did think it was interesting what Dempsey was saying pre-game about they make Sargent work to hard. He has to high press, he drops in, and he has to stretch the backline. Now we didn’t press as much tonight but I’m not sure if Dike, or Siebatcheu to get to the clearance that Josh did.

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      • I do agree with you and with Dempsey, so maybe it’s something about the way they’re using him, and after watching the highlights I admit he did have some moments. But it’s the same story at WB — he does everything but score. Better lucky than smart? (no, that thinking will bring zardes back)

      • I didn’t hear the comments by Dempsey, since that was only on premium cable, but I was really surprised to see how much defensive work Sargent seemed to be doing. He seemed to be part of the effort trying to stop breakouts like those by Elis, and wow, that goalline clearance was practically worth a medal.
        .
        Maybe in Werder’s struggles this year (which we were never able to see, now that Fox Sports is no longer showing Bundesliga games every week) he has also had to drop farther back and mix it up? Even though that’s not ideally what you want a striker to have to do, I really appreciated his energy and work ethic, and I have more respect for him than I did.
        .

  21. Siebatcheu was the only player on this roster with more than 5 goals in their last club season. He’s the closest thing the team has to a proven goal scorer. Not surprising he’s the one to make the break through.

    Watching this game I’m reminded how good and important Michael Bradley was to this team. His control of the midfield was such a given for so long. Brooks did a pretty good impression but I’d very much prefer if an actual midfielder did that though.

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    • I forget which U23 game it was maybe DR but they tried to deny the ball to Yueill so Jackson just slid out of the middle and let the CBs carry it forward. That’s what basically happens in 81 when Aaronson headed it towards Siebatcheu and then again in the 89th when he hit Wes. I don’t think Yueill was very good and I thought on first watch Seb was pretty poor as well. I just think some of Jackson was if you want to leave tons of space for our best long ball passer go ahead and it finally paid off.

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    • Bradley had a very small window of excellence which ended when he sprained his ankle in San Jose in Sept. 2013 moments before the start of the WCQ against the Ticos. After that he was never the same player.

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    • they do need to make 9 a production position to get off the “goal a game” train. we have plenty of forwards who scored or assisted in their caps. pick a couple who do create goals and maybe make sargent #3 for intangibles.

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  22. Steffen had the one terrible play, but otherwise was solid to spectacular. But that one terrible play really makes you worry.
    Pulisic was pretty good on the ball, but wasn’t on the ball enough. Reyna was good, McKennie was quiet until the beautiful assist. Sargent was Sargent, worked hard but no end product. He did have the great goal line clearance, though. Brooks I thought was very good except when the attacker was facing him, he’s not good one v. one.

    Mexico will kill them unless they play much better. They seemed slow, the ball moved slow and it seemed like the ball stopped for a second or two every time a player received the ball. They need to think quicker.

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    • As a GK myself, I can say reps and playing games count. It helps in terms of being a master in terms of cutting angles, being a good judge regarding when to rush out or not on breakaways, when to come out or stay put for crosses, etc. along with self-confidence. Which is why he should at least seek a loan. To be fair, he did well other than that gaffe and grew into the game.

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      • Big difference between England and Denver. I doubt Steffen would have misjudged the flight of the ball so badly if he was in England.

    • Mexico had to go to penalty kicks to win, 6-5. While Mexico had most of the possession and more shots, they weren’t really dominant and didn’t look as good as usual. CR gave them a tough game.

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    • Spot on with your observations. Brooks was the man of the match but one on one will be a problem. Im sure opponents will create those situations in coming games.

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    • saying he was good except for when the keeper bailed him out 4 times is kind of setting yourself up for rougher days with better opponents. when he was bad he was very bad, like juked out of his shorts bad.

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    • i don’t think a team that already hands it away needs to pass faster. i think what they need is a Speed Element TM. a faster way downfield. to get it you move the technical wings to 8 and 10 and then put in at least one wing with nothing but jets. otherwise you see us coming and we take 20 passes to get anything done.

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    • Thank you for pointing that out. I was wondering who was that person that Siebatcheu ran to. Is Dike on the roster?

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      • He is not on the roster but is training with the team and will be available for CR friendly. I believe the thinking is he will have secured a transfer and not be available for the GC so he’s getting in that training time even if he won’t get more than 90 game minutes.

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