Bradley speaks: U.S. coach discusses a variety of topics

Bob Bradley (JohnToddISI)

Photo by John Todd/ISIphotos.com

 U.S. national team head coach Bob Bradley was in New York on Thursday for the unveiling of the U.S. national team home jersey, and also to speak with media about preparations for the upcoming World Cup.

Bradley touched on a wide variety of topics, from the progress of specific players, to process of selecting the team, to the recent success of players such as Herculez Gomez and Edson Buddle. He also discussed Jermaine Jones, altitude preparation and even his observations of Algerian and Slovenian players.

Here are just some of the things Bradley said:

On how many of the 23 World Cup roster spots are secured

"We’re somewhere between 16 and 18, some days a little higher."

On Jermaine Jones, who the U.S. team is still monitoring and who U.S. national team trainer Ivan Pierra will be visiting soon:

"Jermaine has tried to hold off as long as he could to give this thing time, but I think we’ll know in next week for sure whether that one has any hope, or whether or not for his future the best decision to get the surgery."

On Charlie Davies

"I think the fact that Charlie is this far along is great, but certainly even within the framework of being back, let's face it, there are different levels there. Our ability to assess where he is factors into making that decision.

"There’s going to be a decision on our end that is simply about the World Cup. I know that’s been one of his motivating forces in this whole thing. Regardless of how that particular decision goes, if at the end if he's at step 80 (in his recovery), and we think in order for him to start that camp he needs to be at 85, that can’t get in the way of him getting to step 100.

t’s a tricky part because I know what’s on the table right away. I know that a lot of his drive has been with that goal. That means something to all of us, but at the end of the day we still have to assess completely where he is as we make decisions, even for the camp.

On the possibility of not selecting Davies, or cutting him in camp

"At the end of the day decisions get made that you feel are best for the team. There's tough decisions that get made all the time. This one has a lot tied to it, that's exactly right.

Oftentimes, wtihin the team, decisions are clearer than people on the outside would understand. There's an old expression that the team picks the team. That's pretty true because usually things establish themselves pretty well. Players know who are the ones that should be there, and that kind of thing.

There's always going to be strong feelings, not only about Charlie, there's strong feelings about all sorts of guys in this process."

On putting together the starting lineup

Your best eleven guys don’t always make (up) your best team.

On Jozy Altidore

"His experience this year at Hull, I think, has helped him. There’s been some good days. I remember for sure the game against Chelsea, where you could tell he was motivated that day. It was an extra edge in everything he did. I think that seeing that makes you feel good, tells you that some of the things that we've talked to Jozy about, things that he needs to do to keep growing, are happening. There are moments when it goes the other way.

Part of it is our experience as a staff helps Jozy because we know him. We’ve had him in enough. I think the experiences along the way will ensure that he'll be ready to go."

On the upcoming national team camp

In a perfect world we’d have picked our 23 and that’s who we’d come into camp with. At this point, we’re probably thinking more along the lines of 26 to 28 guys in, and knowing that within that we’ll have to assess and, at the end of the day, make some decisions.

On Edson Buddle

"The easy thing to see so far this year is he’s scored some incredible goals. That actually fits if you look over Edson’s career. As a young striker in the league, his talent came through based upon his ability at times to score some great goals, a variety of goals. Goals where he dribbled, goals with his head.

That part is not new, but it’s been there of late. There’s been a lot of maturing that has taken place in less obvious ways. He seems to be doing a lot of little things that make a difference for his team."

On Herculez Gomez

"Herculez we had in in Copa America in 2007 following the Gold Cup when we had almost an entirely different team. We all know, if you go back to his beginnings in MLS, his first year was a year where he came into the scene in LA and what you would say is everything that he touched went into the net. His pure ability to strike a ball was pretty obvious.

That’s kind of come back a little bit at Puebla.

Even in the games where he was, a lot of these games he was just a sub, but he came on the field and now a certain ball would pop loose and the next thing you know he’d latch on to it and score a great goal.

You try to assess those things and project, or factor, or ask yourself what it’s like when the games get better, are enough other pieces of the equation that fit, and see."

TIDBITS

Bradley said he hadn't settled on a specific number of players at defender, midfielder and forward, but that the versatility of the players chosen will help him make that decision. In other words, if has a midfielder who can play in central defense (like Maurice Edu), that might make it easier for him to bring one more midfielder and one fewer defender.

Bradley mentioned Edu's experience as a centerback in the 2008 Olympics as the type of experience that could make him an option in the centerback pecking order.

Discussing the left back position, Bradley mentioned Carlos Bocanegra, Jonathan Bornstein, Jonathan Spector and Heath Pearce as options.

He has not settled on a No. 2 goalkeeper, with Marcus Hahnemann and Brad Guzan the obvious choices battling to back up Tim Howard.

The team is still looking into possible solutions to handle the high altitude of South Africa, including potentially using oxygen tents. That is still being discussed.

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That's all for now. What did you think of Bradley's comments?

Share your thoughts below.

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181 Responses to Bradley speaks: U.S. coach discusses a variety of topics

  1. cfig says:

    I’ve lately gotten the feeling that he understands things more than he’s given credit for. I don’t always agree with his decisions, but he seems to have a good handle on the current situation and I think is going to give us a strong roster for SA.

  2. Sergio of SF says:

    Bradley really chooses his words carefully doesn’t he? Well, I didn’t really learn anything new from this. I’m a little surprised that Jones is still being monitored at this point. I’m glad Pearce is being considered as well.

  3. BlueWhiteLion says:

    i agree at the surprise Jones is monitored–well, not monitored, but still held out as a potential option. I am no expert, but other articles suggest his recovery is not going to happen, if even now he really can’t even run! Is that (the pain and the fracture) something that could go away within a week for full-on training?

  4. tommy w says:

    “There’s an old expression that the team picks the team.”

    Charlie will be selected into the camp.

  5. dwitty says:

    I’m just glad that there was no mention of Beasley…let’s hope that he doesn’t even get called into the camp!

  6. dman says:

    Seems like Charlie might not be coming?

  7. OmarVizquel says:

    He chooses his words more carefully than anyone I’ve ever listened to. I’m sure some of these answers required an intermission.

    I’m convinced he knows his team back and forth and am convinced the players are on the same page.

  8. Warren says:

    Sorry to be the spoilsport, but is Bradley blaming the team for his past and present boneheaded infatuations with players like Sacha?

    Anyway, it is true that by now the best 15 or 16 most might agree with Bradley on, and it is normal for there to be more debate about the next 10 to 20.

  9. JW says:

    that would also suggest that Donovan will get Buddle at least to camp then Buddle will have to further prove himself to make the 23

  10. cfig says:

    I think Bradley sounds like he’s going to give Buddle a look anyway.

  11. babieca says:

    I wonder if it isn’t about making Jones feel that this is his team in the longer term. He’ll probably be too old for 2014, but he sure would be an asset for the next gold cup.

  12. Rory says:

    Someone last week gave him props for figuring out how to stop Xavi in Spains attack which basically is what “The Special One” did to stop Barcelona.

    Or maybe I misunderstood that… I was passed out after hearing someone say something positive about Bob Bradley for the first time in three years.

  13. The Dog has Papers says:

    I liked what I read. . . except that Bornstein is still in the running for left back. The team is going to be strong and hopefully we will have some substitutes that can really change the game (think Bedoya, Buddle, Gomez). Regarding the earlier post about Beasly, I disagree — he looked great in the last warm up.

  14. patrick says:

    not sure you got that idea about sacha. The “team decides the team” means that once you get all of these guys in camp, it becomes obvious who should be playing, and where. I’m no fan of sacha, but he at both club and country has shown flashes of what he can be. The US is not deep enough, especially at “creative” positions to not give him looks when he’s playing well. Now, I think we’ve gotten to a point where sacha is no longer a real option with JFT, feilhaber, bedoya, holden donovan and dempsey in the MF pool.

  15. rory says:

    Sorry, Buddle never played for Chivas USA or New York under Bob, so he’s not eligible for the National team.

  16. TimN says:

    I think Bradley “danced” through that nicely. He didn’t give up really anyhing insightful or definite, but at the same time made it clear that the “right guys” are on the radar. He’s not going to let the cat out of the bag until he has to…

  17. PGS says:

    I don’t envy Bob for the tough decisions he has to make, but I’m behind him 100%.

    I liked “Your best 11 guys don’t always make your best team.” Reminds me of the line from “Miracle” where the coach says he’s not looking for the best players, he’s looking for the right ones.

  18. madmax says:

    From the conversation, I get the impression that Bradley feels Davies and Jones are long, long shots at best.

  19. Socrates says:

    Hmmm who are the 16-18?
    3 GKs are known: Howard, Hahn., Guz.
    If you add
    - Spector, Dolo, Gooch, Boca, Demerit
    - Donovan, Bradley, Edu, Clark, Dempsey
    - Altidore

    That only makes 14. So another 2-4 are already for sure.

    - Bornstein
    - Goodsen
    - Holden (far enough back)
    - Feilhaber or Torres

  20. patrick says:

    its NOT his team. He hasn’t played for us, worn the colors or even practiced. It was his choice to play for us, which obviously is appreciated, but this is not now, nor ever will be, his team. There’s a long line of “hims” before jermaine jones. donovan, M bradley, gooch, boca, dempsey, hell this team is and will be Jozy’s more than itll ever be jermaine’s. The US obvously has interest in him, but this isnt’ about letting him know this is “his” team

  21. CJ from OC says:

    I kind of agree. I can’t climb into the head of those that are locks, but you would think that most of them want him there–perform better with him there.

    At the same time though, I can see some of the older guys agreeing with BB–thinking that if he’s not ready, he shouldn’t be there.

  22. To me, it sounds like Bradley has already decided that Davies is out, and he just wants to soften the blow. That sucks. If there is a heart to that team, Davies is it. Who else could it be? I like all the players, but even if Davies plays in the 70+ minute range, he can give a spark and an emotional upswing that no other striker can. I believe that Altidore, Edu, Beasley, Holden will all play with more heart if Davies is there.

    I think Bradley is okay. He seems like a good coach. If he cuts Davies out, I say find a new coach more in tune with the players.

  23. If the team picks the team, there is no way CD( is not on it. If he’s not, Bradley picked the team.

  24. I’m not sure Dolo and Clark are on Bradley’s 16-18 for sure. I’d like to think Dolo is, Clark has only played once in the past 5 months or so.

  25. dbex says:

    I had the opposite reaction about Davies. Thought it sounded like he was laying the groundwork for telling people that Charlie just hasn’t progressed far enough to be included. Hope I’m wrong.

  26. DC Josh says:

    His interviews don’t reveal much on his thoughts, but I have confidence in him to lead our country in the world cup. There is no doubt Davies will make the camp, along with Gomez and Buddle.

    I can’t remember, was last world cup’s camp this important or followed?

  27. USMNT says:

    Howard

    Hahnemann

    Guzan

    3

    Spector

    DeMerit

    Onyewu

    Bocanegra

    Cherundolo

    Goodson

    Bornstein

    Pearce*

    7

    Dempsey

    Bradley

    Clark

    Donovan

    Holden

    Edu

    Torres

    Feilhaber

    Bedoya

    Beasley*

    9

    Altidore

    Ching

    Davies

    Johnson

    Gomez*

    Casey*

    Buddle*

    4

    _____

    23

  28. ericW says:

    I think Bob is also thinking Torres and Goodson have booked their flight.

  29. ThaDeuce says:

    or, the team will collectively know he is not ready, and be okay with the decision to give that spot to gomez or someone else who could be used in a crutch.

  30. JL says:

    Maybe, but I’m not sure he means the players all pick who they like. I read him to mean that when you put certain combinations of players out there, they perform better collectively. “The cream rises,” and everybody knows it, rather than, “We all really like X so he’s in the club.”

    Then again,k maybe that all amounts to the same thing…?

  31. derek says:

    Simply, if Davies isn’t ready to play, he won’t go. He could still join the team over there as an inspiration, like Frankie did last time I believe after his injury. And like Beckham may.

    And, Bob speaks in the way that is his personality, as well as his job. It isn’t contrived. A coach has to prepare for all options. I’m sure if he knew now that Charlie, for example, would absolutely not be ready, he’d say so. Til then, he leaves all options open like he should. No softening blows, just waiting to see.

  32. peter says:

    I hear u man. Bob bradley is actually a very smart coach, he deserves a lot of credit, the decisions he makes at the end of the day are only going to b good for the team to do well in south africa. In bob bradley we trust

  33. babieca says:

    Not this is HIS team, but THIS is his team. If Jones is to play for the US in the future, especially in a non-WC tourney, he needs to be made to feel that he has a stake. It would be foolish of Bob to burn any bridges, even ones which haven’t yet panned out.

  34. Isaac says:

    What a jerk. How about let’s hope that Beasley gets back enough form that he IS called into camp. Why, after the past year and a half, would you want this national team to not have depth?

  35. kfly says:

    Wow. Bradley would be an amazing politician. I didn’t learn one thing from this interview, but somehow, I’m reassured.

  36. patrick says:

    he was invited to the friendly in amsterdam, and bob bradley had a nice sit down talk with him when he submitted his paperwork. Besides, at this point, if he wants to play international soccer, he has no choice but to play for us, and he clearly fancies international soccer as he made the move in the first place!

  37. Aiden says:

    nice thought, but no way EJ makes it.

  38. goforgol says:

    “Team selects the team.” Well captain Donavan already put in a plug for Buddle and Gomez. Also BB stated in another interview that players must be contributing to their club teams and be match fit. And fitness coach Pierre has stated that players must have been playing with club teams for him to recommend a player match fit. Pierre has some physical tough tests deigned to objectively determine fitness. Donovan and Hejduk have the highest scores. Jones, Ching, and Davies may be out.

  39. patrick says:

    steve, more than anything else hes saying “look we went charlie there, but only if he can make an impact” He told charlie himself the same thing. Let me get this straight, you’re advocating firing a coach becasue he leaves a player recovering from horrifying injuries off the WC roster? you’re dillsional

  40. sread says:

    “Oftentimes, wtihin the team, decisions are clearer than people on the outside would understand. There’s an old expression that the team picks the team. That’s pretty true because usually things establish themselves pretty well. Players know who are the ones that should be there, and that kind of thing.”

    That whole section was very interesting imho. I think it sort of ambiguous, but what he’s saying is that Charlie will find his way into the final 23.

  41. I don’t know, I just think he’s lowering expectations regarding Davies. He’s not seen him in training or anything and a lot of folks seem to expect that since he can run he should be the first name on the team sheet.

  42. D says:

    Why the hell would MB second on that list? I am pretty sure the person meant and if you read it his as in he is a part of the team. If you want to pick at little thinks you have to state why MB would be ahead of those guys. That guy hasn’t even earned a starting role in my opinion at the WC

  43. braden says:

    I sometimes wonder whether the comments of pure venom directed at Beasley are by posters too young to remember what Beasley did for the national team when he was on form. There’s no left-sided player in the pool that can cross a ball like him, or break with speed during a counterattack (I used to think Donovan was slow compared to Beasley).

    And, unlike most of our forwards, he actually knows how to finish. He shouldn’t go if he’s not fit, but if he is he’s the best we got on the left.

  44. braden says:

    I still want to hunt that Dutch player down for what he did to Holden…

  45. BSU SC says:

    I would bet the farm that Johnson does not get chosen over Gomez or Buddle. And until he actually steps on the field and plays, I don’t think Davies can be put on the roster either.

    I like the rest of your list though. (Mostly) well done!

  46. bottlcaps says:

    To be fair to Bradley, He hasn’t actually admitted or dismissed the idea of Davies, Buddle or Gomez making the team.
    On the other hand, his (verbal) inclusion of Bornstein of Klejstan into consideration has me worried. It basically goes to choosing the players that he is comfortable playing under his system. While Bornstein and Klejstan have experience with Bradley at Chivas, the USMNT does not play the same kind of football that Chivas does. The fact that both Bornstein and Klejstan have not really fared well recently on USMNT team duty has me thinking that Bradley is going more for familiarity and pedigree than performance.

    Davies should only be under consideration if he can perform to a certain level at the training camp, the same with Holden and Onyewu. If indeed these players cannot perform at a certain level at the training camp, It is a real leap of faith to think they will perform at a world class level come June. I do not think that Davies has the speed he showed before his injury. This measure is usually the last to come back.

    I think Bradley knows he cannot take a unfit but pedigreed player to South Africa. Every position is precious. The fact that Maurice Edu stated his capability to play midfield as well as center back shows that versatility may be the key to the US success. I hope Bradley keeps this in mind.

  47. BSU SC says:

    No, it wasn’t this dramatic in 2006 because 22 of the 23 spots were locked solid prior to camp. The only drama we had 4 years ago was Taylor Twellman vs. Brian Ching.

  48. Francois says:

    Nicely Done..but I don’t think Casey makes it. I just don’t know who would get his ticket on the plane.

  49. braden says:

    “Team selects the team” means that when one of your teammates goes through a horrible, horrific experience, but works incredibly hard to recover in order to be on the team once again, you call them into camp and select them if they’re fit, regardless of playing time.

    It doesn’t mean that Landon Donovan gets to pick Edson Buddle…

  50. Fidel says:

    I may be totally off but he comes off favoring Buddle over Gomez. I think in his mind: CD9 > Buddle > Gomez

  51. Seriously? says:

    One point he mentions about Gomez caught my eye, the fact that he’s been scoring when he comes off the bench as well as when he starts. If they’re looking for a forward who’s not expected to start necessarily, the fact that Herculez has shown the ability to score as a sub could help his chances. Not that the decision would be based on that, but if things were looking pretty even, it’s something that might stick in the back of your head.

  52. Dave says:

    Jones is out.

    Buddle is ahead of Gomez in Bradley’s head.

    Davies faces an an uphill battle, but will be at camp and be poke and prodded before a final decision is made.

    Peace.

  53. Franky says:

    Its called the “Beep Test” and anyone who has played college soccer knows how grueling it can be. Donovan and Hejduk can reach around level 24…which is unfathomable to me, and I was always in great shape in college.

  54. Hood Rich says:

    I think you are very very close in that list except I would take Adu instead of Ching. Let’s face it, Ching does not offer anything more than Altidore and Casey, plus he is hurt and very slow these days. But otherwise think you nailed it.

  55. Josh D says:

    There’s one thing to “understand” the game and team but there’s never been a sense that he has the ability to execute meaningful strategy and for that, he’s gone at the end of the Cup.

  56. BSU SC says:

    Adu!?!?! I hope that’s a joke.

  57. Sandro says:

    Good information Ives! I think Bradley does not get a lot of credit but he took the reins from Bruce Arena and the US has pretty much not missed a beat. The US had a great showing in the Confederations Cup. It won the gold cup that put them there. The US also looked a lot better in europe against european teams. Of course there were those moments in Copa America (which the timing stunk with the gold cup) and the recent Gold Cup which the US didn’t look well albeit it wasn’t the full squad for the US. But overall he has given a lot of these young guys the experience and exposure which will help as the US program keeps growing. I can’t wait for the World Cup! GO USA!

  58. jig says:

    you are right.

  59. Joamiq says:

    Absolutely 100% dead on.

  60. LOL! – good one.

  61. jig says:

    …and thats the best way to go about things. I feel like there’s people out there sometimes that want us to play a 1-7-2 to get all the midfielders on the field at once.

  62. Joamiq says:

    Haha well done. That’s pretty much the summary.

    Bradley does seem to think more highly of Buddle than Gomez, which is interesting. I was kind of hoping it’d be the other way around.

  63. micah says:

    I don’t think the “team picks the team” means players have any say whatsoever. I think it means that how the players play in camp will determine who goes to SA, and the players will know who that is because they all play with each other every day. Basically that’s Princetonian for saying that he has nothing personal for/against the guys he picks/doesn’t, its all about how they play. Not that I buy that with the old favorites always getting the call, but that’s all he was saying, I think.

  64. Hmmm…

    Has been in 2 world cups
    Dutch Champions
    Champions League semi-finals
    Scottish Champions

    Donovan can’t boast that success.

  65. I read the following:

    1. Charlie Davies will not be ready

    2. Buddle will get a look

    3. Hercules Gomez will not

    4. Hoping that Jones sees progress (MB probably wants to play with him) – but probably a no go

  66. brentmcd says:

    I’ve been wondering if there is any chance in hell that Brad Friedel would put on a US shirt again? He has looked outstanding in the EPL this year. Much better than Tim Howard, IMHO.

  67. primoone says:

    Bradley on Gomez…

    “he came on the field and now a certain ball would pop loose and the next thing you know he’d latch on to it and score a great goal”

    Yeah because the other 8 non-poached goals that he scored from run of play or set pieces were insignificant…

    Im not a Gomez fan…but seriously?

    Bradley is soo full of sh*t

  68. Thorpinski says:

    dbex that’s exactly what i was thinking. It appears Davies has more to prove than Gooch or other injured players. Nevertheless I can not see how he couldn’t be invited to camp. And i still believe he will be going to SA

  69. JW says:

    It must be frustrating for Beasley. He was trying to leave the club because he was not being played and the coach convinces him to stay. He gets a few games here and there but i can not remember the last time he played a club match. What sucks about that is he looked pretty lively when he came in for our friendly against the Netherlands and I though maybe he could keep that up for club. Looks like he has not had the chance as of late.

  70. nanostyle says:

    Gooch has been inactive for about the same amount of time as CD, and Gooch is essentially a lock at center back if he’s healthy. They both just started full training. I don’t know why there aren’t as many articles about Gooch not being on the plane to SA.

  71. war says:

    Nice, I can only assume…

    His choices-Howard, Hahnemann, Guzan, Boca, Spector, Bornstein, Demerit, Goodson, Pearce, Cherundolo, Donovan, Dempsey, Bedoya, Bradley, Edu, Altidore. because they’re the only ones playing

    + Holden and Beasley when he plays for 18. Then Onyewu, Davies, Herc, Buddle, Clark to finish.

    I can’t figure how he’s lost on the number 2 spot. Guzan gets no games. I hope Marcus can get a game for the US and show how well he can do. He’s been keeping many clean sheets, and these are sometimes 8-10 saves a game clean sheets.

  72. Vince Clortho says:

    There’s your dose of reality, I interpret this as Bob saying,”He (Davies) did really well for us, but more than likely he physically won’t be anywhere near where he should be. Plus he screwed up by not following team rules, so while he may have learned his lesson, he still needs to pay a price.”

  73. jamesey says:

    Hey Michael!! we’re on to you!

  74. mikeandike says:

    When asked about Sacha Klestjan’s chances of making the final 23, Bradley replied without hesitation “Sacha has had a seat on the plane from Day One. He’ll be there for sure and help us get a first half red card that we need to motivate guys aginist England”

  75. AngelUSAfan says:

    Goal Keepers: Howard,Hahnemann & Guzan – 3

    Defenders: Spector, DeMerit, Onyewu*, Bocanegra,
    Cherundolo, Goodson, Bornstein, Pearce – 8

    Midfields: Dempsey, Bradley, Donovan, Feilhaber,
    Edu, Torres, Holden*, Bedoya, Clark,- 9

    Fowards: Altidore, Buddle, Gomez,

    Additions: Johnson, Ching*, Davies*, Beasley*, Adu,
    Jermaine Jones*, Castillo – 7

    Total of 30 players going to be call in on May 11 from there June 1st. we will get the roster of 23 players. * it mean this player are injured and maybe won’t make it to the world cup

  76. smokedgouda says:

    Bob,

    I know you take all this advice very seriously, so here is mine: please, please, please don’t play a timid, meandering team at the WC. Play a team that can make fast passes, be creative and score goals. No more mediocrity.

  77. Stu says:

    Chill Braden…its all good.

    Im an over-paid over-hyped dooshbag that likes big chicks. I mean look at me!

  78. Eddie says:

    I caught that, but I think you’re reading too far into it. He is still giving him credit for scoring a “great goal”, which Bradley does not say lightly. And, as any coach would say, for a player who is reemerging late in the cycle due entirely to the fact he found his goal-scoring form, you also have to look at his all-around game to judge how he would hold up over 90 minutes against WC-level competition. You don’t think that Bradley has seen all of the goals Gomez has scored? Gomez has probably earned an invitation to the training camp, but he will still have to prove himself there in order to make it into the final 23. It’s just a fact of life for someone who basically washed out of MLS (fairly or unfairly).

  79. Sergio of SF says:

    I agree. I actually see Beasley being a big factor this summer. Maybe not as a starter, but as a super sub.

  80. Louis Z says:

    BB is a smart guy, after all, he went to an ivy league school, but he is not that smart as a coach. During the friendlies he should have looked at certain players as if he had holes to fill, but went ahead and continue to select players that most of us already figured out that weren’t NT caliber. Now time has ran out and he has to select on players that don’t have NT experiense (at least not recently) to me is his biggest blunder. case in point, take Michael Hoyo, a real gem of a player 6’1, 175 central midfielder, never gave the kid a chance on the NT even tho he is a regular player for estudiantes of argentina, instead he wanted him to commit to the US U20 squad, the kid declined. now a Clark, Sasha, borsteins of the world wouldn’t get on a top argentine team but those same players get numerous tries with the NT team. now with JJ probably out of this WC, he could have used a player of Hoyo’s caliber that can pass, hold and defend and score from long range.

  81. bottlcaps says:

    Guzan played all of AV cup (FA, League, Carling)games EXCEPT the final.

  82. Isaac says:

    This is my roster and I think this is actually the most likely to go:

    Forwards- Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies, Brian Ching, Clint Dempsey

    Midfielders- Landon Donovan, Michael Bradley, Maurice Edu, Stuart Holden, Benny Feilhaber, Ricardo Clark, Jose Francisco Torres, DaMarcus Beasley, Alejandro Bedoya

    Defenders- Carlos Bocanegra, Jay DeMerit, Oguchi Onyewu, Steve Cherundolo, Jonathan Spector, Jonathan Bornstein, Clarence Goodson

    Goalkeepers- Tim Howard, Marcus Hahnemann, Brad Guzan

    My lineup would be:

    ——————–Altidore—-Dempsey—————

    Donovan—————————————–Holden

    ———————-Edu——-Bradley—————

    Bocanegra———–DeMerit—-Onyewu——-Cherundolo

    ————————–Howard———————-

    At the same time, I could see this happening:

    ————————-Altidore———————

    ————————-Dempsey———————-

    Donovan—————————————–Bedoya

    ——————-Edu————-Bradley————

    Bocanegra———–DeMerit—-Onyewu——-Cherundolo

    ————————–Howard———————-

    Bedoya is fit, getting minutes, playing well, is confident and has all the intangible qualities that make him fit into this team, not to mention the skills and abilities that make him stand out.

  83. war says:

    I believe he missed the semis as well. How many games is that compared to Hahnemann playing every week. Not to mention that these games were a while ago and spread out, not week to week. Hahnemann, I believe, is sharper and in better game condition.

  84. patrick says:

    gooch had ONE injury that required ONE surgery. Davis is facing a comeback from multiple surgeries and internal as well as external injuries. Furthermore, the fitness level is more important for a forward (particularly one that utilizes speed and hustle) than a centerback.

  85. goforgol says:

    At 1-13-09 camp: Stu Holden can also hold his own on the BEEp test:
    “…The short explanation of the beep test is that involves running back and forth between a measured distance in a defined time frame that gets faster as the test progresses. That time frame is marked by a recorded ‘beep’, thus the significant but not-so-clever name.
    In all seriousness, the evaluation is an excellent tool for the coaches to establish a baseline of the capacity of each player, which they use to design an individualized training program to advance each player’s performance. With Landon Donovan and Frankie Hejduk not here to claim the highest marks, today’s top finish belonged to Houston Dynamo midfielder Stuart Holden…”
    Source: link to mnt-ussoccer.blogspot.com

  86. The Goche says:

    Bob deserves all the flack he’s gotten, as he’s gotten it all on his own.

    1. Copa America 2007

    2. Confederations Cup, first 2 games. We got lucky to get out of the group stage in that tournament. Yes, they did much much better and I give him credit.

    But the true story is, if we come out in the Cup like we did against Brazil and Italy in the first two games of the Confed Cup, we will almost certainly not be so lucky again.

    That said, if Bob gets results in the Cup, I will give Bob credit as a pretty good coach for the US in the grand scheme of things, presuming he leaves before he ruins it all, a la Bruce.

  87. wilyboy says:

    Outside of Jozy’s headbutt, what a positive week for US soccer!

  88. Isaac says:

    I’m sorry but Michael Hoyos has made five appearances for Estudiantes la Plata, three of them off the bench, and you’re trying to convince me that he is ” a regular player” for the Argentine club?

    This is exactly what is wrong with American soccer fans; they act like there is this giant wealth of talent and skill ripe and ready for the national team stage when, in reality, there isn’t. Ricardo Clark did a fine job when given the chance against world class competition so I don’t know why you’re pinpointing him as someone who has unworthily gotten chances, Kljestan probably wouldn’t have appeared if Torres was fit in the Confederations Cup, which he wasn’t, and seeing as how the options at left back are thin, playing Jonathan Bornstein isn’t exactly surprising. He had a great string of three games against Honduras, Trinidad and Tobago and Costa Rica and when he has performed poorly, it’s against stiff competition i.e., Brazil, Netherlands. Moreover, Carlos Bocanegra didn’t perform monumentally better against Brazil and Maicon. Also, what’s this about Michael Hoyos being someone who can defend? He’s described virtually everywhere as an attacking midfielder. Even if Hoyos can pass, hold and score from long range, so what? Should we really seek possession and great attacking players by means of sacrificing defensive sustainence that got the USA to the Confederations Cup final and half way to the Cup considering that we had enough attacking talent out there to take Spain down 2-0 and Brazil as well before halftime? The USA probably would have won the final if not for red card on Bradley that was VERY suspect and when we did put out an attacking midfielder(Feilhaber) that can pass, hold, score from long range, and, to some extent, defend, we ended up losing. I’m tired of hearing this crap about players who are better on the ball. Of course they can do all that well, but we only have room for so many attacking players in the starting XI and I think everyone agrees that Donovan, Dempsey, Altidore and Davies are the best attacking front four combination we have. After that, we need guys who are defensive stalwarts.

  89. patrick says:

    i made no mention of an order in which players should have the team considered “theirs”, simply a list of players which all have seniority on this team and are linchpins to our roster

  90. patrick says:

    Ives,
    You mentioned he spoke about the slovenians and algerians, any chance we could get that section transcribed, or summarized, or can we find it somewhere else?

  91. 439058742039867542 says:

    “That guy hasn’t even earned a starting role in my opinion at the WC”

    You’re an idiot and don’t know anything about the US team if you honestly think Michael Bradley won’t be a starter. I honestly put Bradley up there with Dempsey and Donovan as one of our best players, and with his youth he is a big part of the future of this team.

  92. Judging Amy says:

    Exactly. BB gets tremendous flak but his decisions are hardly Maradona level outrageous. He has a tough job and hasn’t done nearly poor enough to warrant all the fire Bradley chants.

  93. patrick says:

    thanks, I was going to comment on hoyos A) being quite green and B) not being an everyday player but i was lazy to do the research. I couldn’t agree more with your sentiments. Our best lineup is one that pairs bradley with clark or edu. While it’d be nice, we don’t need to have a maestro pulling the strings in the center with MB cleaning up behind him, both MB and edu/clark can tackle, distribute and get forward. THAT is what we need out of our CMs

  94. Come on you Yanks says:

    Bob Bradley is the special one…

  95. Judging Amy says:

    Im with you Isaac but that is one long paragraph haha.

    I especially agree with you about this untapped secret combo of “offensive” players that will turn the Nats into Barcelona. A lot is talked about how much we gain with supposedly “offensive” players (as if our players are chess pieces and are completely unable to perform dual functions), but not much about what is lost. We are what we are and we’ll play how we can play.

    That’s not a loser mentality, that’s the reality of being a still developmentally young soccer nation in the world’s most competitive game. There’s perhaps a confusion about conceding you are not as technically skilled as another team (I mean true powerhouses like Spain and Brazil, not mid-tier teams who we are now equal to skillwise), with conceding you are worse than another team.

  96. ZacIndy says:

    thats a very funny picture. The frosted tips put it over the edge.

  97. Isaac says:

    And really, if there WAS a with the attacking abilities of Donovan, Dempsey, Feilhaber etc and the defensive abilities of Edu, Bradley, Clark etc, he’d be out there playing, but there isn’t and if there is, get me a video because I’d like to see what he can do. The thing is, the USA would probably play better with a two-way central midfielder right next to Bradley who had just as much ability on both sides of the ball as Bradley, and, based on video, Jermaine Jones seems to be that player, but he’s not healthy. If the USA had two guys in the middle who could distribute and dribble the ball well out of the central midfield as well as cancel the service coming out of it, they’d be even better than they are now because not only would they be directly stunting the other teams possession and amount of chances by taking it right off their feet, they themselves help the USA keep possession, and therefore, less possession for the opposition. I think Jermain Jones has that ability, but anyways, I digress.

  98. Isaac says:

    Exactly. Basically, you get as many of your most dangerous attacking players on the field without risking shortage of defensive players that can stifle the opposition. What’s also important is that the team’s mentality is set to combat the opposition to the final whistle.

  99. Sergio of SF says:

    I wouldn’t count Copa America 2007. Bob took a very young an experimental squad. Nothing wrong with that.

  100. MissionSDFC says:

    no one says less with more than RoboBob

  101. Dinho says:

    I like this….especially because Bornstein is not in either lineup!!!!

  102. John says:

    I like Bob Bradley, but he does rely to alarming degree on the phrase, At the end of the day. One fears that he gives almost no thought whatsoever to sunup and midday.

  103. evan eleven says:

    of course Jones is being monitored coach Bob has a big hard-on for Jerman Jones. i’m surprised they didn’t get him to rehab with Charlie and Gooch 6 months ago, then he might be playing now…
    from Bob’s words on Herculez and Buddle it seems he’s a little higher on Edson i think???

  104. Isaac says:

    I’m glad you like the lineup, but don’t be shocked if Bornstein IS in the lineup. Even though Bocanegra is an all around great defender and has the positional sense to deal with pace, he has been known to get blown by like a stack of leaves at times. At the moment, I go with Bocanegra, but I can understand Bradley’s sentiments if Bornstein is played out there.

  105. r.benjamin says:

    I think Bradley makes a mistake not bringing in the full 30.

    There are enough health and form question marks that he needs to see everyone pitted against each other and let the cream rise.

    Say or love or hate what you want, but until that camp we cant really tell how back or in form these guys are:

    Gomez, Buddle, Gooch, Beasely, Holden, Adu, EJ.. Clark.. Sascha (who you know he will bring)

  106. The Goche says:

    That was a joke of a team. That was a perfect opportunity to raise our level of play against good opponents. I understand taking some young guys, but taking a side with almost no international experience and no chance whatsoever of succeeding was a terrible decision and I put that on Bob.

  107. Isaac says:

    I don’t know about you, but I kind of think the ridiculous amount of injuries he suffered is lesson enough.

  108. r.benjamin says:

    I agree with this. The last striker on a 23 sees virtually no action. Selecting Davies is an intangible that might over balance having a Buddle who gets zero minutes.

    I know if I was on the team (and reading between the lines of Altidores motivation) I know I’d look at the sideline, see Charlie and say wtf.. I can’t track back right, look what that guy did just to be here and I’d get on my horse.

  109. Vik says:

    It’s funny you mention this, at times during the Inter-Barca game I felt I was watching a USA-Spain replay.

  110. Louis Z says:

    I was under the impression that he was a defensive midfielder that can pass. I have watched some of his games as a starter and as a sub, I’m not saying that he is the answer to our prayers, but we won’t know until we try him in a friendly, which is my point, we won’t know now since he was also invited to the argentine U20 NT.

  111. nanostyle says:

    If they are both cleared to resume full training they should both be at the same level of recovery, which is recoverd. They are now searching to regain match fitness. If I’m not mistaken a great deal of speed and hustle go into defending as well as attacking. My point is, that there are too many articles about CD and whether he will/won’t make the trip to South Africa. I don’t understand the sigh of relief because Gooch (as well as Holden) are back training fully. I feel we still aren’t out of the clear just yet. Hopefully everything works out for the USMNT, thats what we all want.

  112. Duck says:

    I remember that factoid about Holden from last year. He stated in a recent interview that he prides himself on his fitness, and hopes that it will speed his return to first team action at Bolton. I wonder how US players stack up against other nationalities in an objective test like that.

  113. killer insticts says:

    Everything was good until he mentioned Bornstein!!!! Yes Bradley has done well, but he still has his favorites despite them making numerous mistakes that has given away goals like Bornstein. Just last game he caused a penalty AGAIN for Chivas. I would rather try out some of the young guys in the MLS who have shown better composure on the ball(ex. Chris Tierney,Kevin Alston, Rodney Wallace & Mike Chabala). Pearce has speed to run the flank and crosses much better than Trashstein

  114. Shmenge says:

    Landon has already publicly backed both Gomez and Buddle for a look-see, so he’ll certainly be OK with it.

  115. patrick says:

    well, its a good thing our games are going to be played later in the day then, huh?

  116. Shmenge says:

    I also think Bradley saw a guy who can come off the bench (and who won’t MIND coming off the bench) and do a great job.

    Bradley wouldn’t say “a great goal” lightly and he wouldn’t have set up Herc to train at Chivas USA for a few weeks if he wasn’t somewhat interested.

  117. NK says:

    I think it sounds like Charlie is at least going to the camp…Bradley was on ESPN First Take this morning, and here was his quotation on Charlie:

    “We’re still assessing it, but Charlie has had an amazing mentality…we’re hoping he’ll continue to progress…WE’LL GET A GOOD LOOK AT HIM IN OUR CAMP…we’re hoping it will still work for him”

    That sounds good.

  118. madmax says:

    I agree. I can’t think of any athlete in any sport who plays only 10 games a year (three straight years) and is in professional form.

    I was a huge Beasley supporter, but the reality is, he doesn’t play, for reasons. If in the 23 it would be a wasted sentimental pick, like Lewis, and Wegerle were.

  119. madmax says:

    He did downplay Gomez’ accomplishments. Don’t know why?

  120. Warren says:

    Giving Sacha – and Bornstein if I recall correctly -looks in Confed Cup finals as the second half subs – what do you call that? Yes USMNT lacks depth, but if it were me they would be last 2 off bench.

    BB’s learning, but I agree with those hoping he is one and done after the Cup.

  121. Warren says:

    We are in agreement that pool has deepened and Sacha has sunk.

  122. JDC says:

    Care to explain that?

  123. JoeTable says:

    If you were as viciously attacked as he is for every single thing he says and does, you’d be very careful with your words too.

  124. patrick says:

    That’s certainly great news, but I personally wasn’t worried about him getting called into camp, it’s been about him convincing bob, or whomever else, that he’s fit and in form enough (or close enough) to give him a spot.

  125. Warren says:

    a lot better against Euro teams like Denmark and Croatia? I wouldn’t say so. Rest of team looked better against dutch, except for BB pet LB Bornstein, who…didn’t. Assuming we all agree being responsible for the other team’s 3 goals counts as having a bad day.

  126. Isaac says:

    Yes, but I don’t think it’s anything that will end up costing the USA any kind of matches. It’s also not like nobody tried to call in Hoyos; he simply declined and Bradley had no room on his roster to be trying for a young player who wasn’t even guarenteed to accept the invitation.

    All the sites I’ve seen have him listed as an attacking midfielder so I’m gonna go with that, but either way, it’s no huge deal and no proof that Bradley has done a poor job.

  127. LJ says:

    The players are just like anyone else.

    If they see CD clearly not ready to go in camp and then see Gomez looking sharp, they’ll be fine with that.

    It would be cool to go with your buddies but it’s even cooler and more lucrative if you win. This ain’t some spring break trip the Padre Island, it’s the World Cup and there is an awful lot of fame and fortune to be had; if you win.

    The players will leave Charlie behind without a backward glance if he can’t help them win.

  128. Ton says:

    I remember all of DMB’s career.

    Horrible first touch, lots of aimless dribbling and runnning around, but when he is on the US can really use him.

    But if he’s not, he’s a disaster. Unfortunately he hasn’t done much since the Holland game so it’s hard to see him making a case.

  129. Isaac says:

    Well the USA had already qualified for the Confederations Cup by doing very well in the Gold Cup. Lo and behold, Bob manages to do the USA proud in the Confederations Cup. Wasn’t much point in risking injury by taking his players down to a tournament that didn’t even matter.

  130. Earl says:

    You are reading way too much into that comment.

    That is a cliche often applied to teams where the majority of the positions are clearly decided because those players are clearly better.

    Another way to say the same thing is “we have no depth”. And that, of course , is absolutely true.

  131. Pee On says:

    DMB did look good in Holland but he has barely played since. Makes it tough to take him.

  132. madmax says:

    dwitty, according to Fox Soccer Bradley did talk of Beasley,
    “Bradley said Glasgow Rangers midfielder DaMarcus Beasley, a veteran of the 2002 and 2006 World Cups, was “on the radar screen” for the training camp, but “there are still clearly some questions.”

    “DaMarcus has been tricky in this last year,” Bradley added. “He had some very good games in December, got back into the team and I think did well. And since then it’s been up and down, more down certainly of late.”

  133. Matrix says:

    Marcello Lippi, manager of World Cup Champs Italy, is famous for always saying that.

  134. jmc says:

    Bradley’s comments on Davies were fairly shrewd as he is in a no win situation. If Charlie is fit he makes the squad. The worst thing for Bradley is to have CD good enough for the camp but not ready for the World Cup. If he leaves him off the team and they tank in SA he leaves himself open to a huge amount of second guessing. It’s much safer from Bradley’s standpoint for there to be plausable doubts about Davies’ fitness. Same for Gooch. Let’s hope its a moot point and they are both fit.

  135. BretFavre says:

    Bradley is a master.

    Looks at all these posts; many of you have come to completely opposite conclusions on topics that Bradley has commented on.

    Genius!

  136. tommy w says:

    “Your best eleven guys don’t always make (up) your best team.”

    That, combined with

    “There’s an old expression that the team picks the team. That’s pretty true because usually things establish themselves pretty well.”

    To me that is saying that players who are not getting regular games like Onyewu and Davies will make it to the camp regardless because they’ve begun to form something of an establishment in the “A Roster”. The team knows who should be playing for the good of the USA style of playing. Maybe I’m being hopeful, but I think that Bradley is actually doing a -bad job- at hiding the fact that Davies and Onyewu will be in the camp.

  137. Cheer leader says:

    This is the World Cup, a very serious, big money affair. Players here get showcased and maybe win a move that can get them into the big or bigger money.

    So Charlie went thru hell to get to the World Cup? Well it’s not good enough to just get there; you have to do something once you are there. If Davies can’t do something beyond being a cheerleader, I guarantee you the players would rather have someone there who can actually help. Otherwise, he is taking their money.

    “The last striker on a 23 sees virtually no action. ”

    So you think you can just throw away one slot? In 2006 England took Rooney, Owen, Crouch and Theo Walcott as strikers. Rooney was half fit and played poorly (inspirational player,sound familiar?). Owen blew out his knee in the third group game. Peter Crouch scored one goal against TNT, the only England striker to score.

    Walcott did not play a minute, which would seem to validate your comment, except it doesn’t. He did not play because he wasn’t up to it; therefore England was down to Crouch, a half fit stuggling Rooney and a Michael Owen with a blown out knee.

    You think England might have done better if they had taken Jermaine Defoe instead of having to play Crouch? There sure are a lot of people who think Sven should have.

    The USMNT is not so good that it can afford to give anything away; why people like you want to send them to the Cup with one hand tied behind their back from the get go is beyond me.

  138. Goalscorer24 says:

    If he is only taking 26 to 28 in the camp, anu fringe players are gone.

  139. The Goche says:

    There is no reason we couldn’t send a legitimate team to the Copa America.

    I realize it was two days after the Gold Cup ended, and it probably would not be possible to send a full squad, but we sent not one regular national team player.

    You make it sound like he was saving our players for the Confederations Cup or something, but that was 2 years later and qualifiers didn’t start for a year after the Copa.

    It makes no sense to not send a legitimate team to a major international competition, particularly one that is a better competition than any CONCACAF competition.

  140. StakeburningHeretic says:

    Patrick ,

    Great points.

    This will get me labeled a heretic at the Church of CD9 but Gooch is a long established veteran center back for the USMNT and if he shows signs of not being up to it there are viable options. Frankly, mobility was never one of Gooch’s strong points anyway. So there isn’t much of a story there.

    Charlie’s story is far more dramatic.

    Charlie basically had a run of about 10 games starting with the Egypt game at the Confederations Cup. Along with his never say die attiude and his speed he was also powerful and relentless.

    It’s asking a great deal of him to expect that he will have the strength and power that made him stand out. And without those things, he doesn’t belong on the team.

    So him getting on the team is a much greater long shot than Gooch.

  141. JuniorDosSantos says:

    “over-paid”

    How much does he make then? or are you going to use multiple accounts to answer that question by not answering it because im sure u dont know.

  142. Thorpinski says:

    While there is no disputing the importance of match fitness there has to be some consideration to the ” mental” aspect of selecting players. Sasha for example is a player who is very fragile mentaly his confidence goes up it goes down. Not the type of player you want to see on the pitch in the WC. Davies on the other hand mentally speaking is all aboout abusing defenders, scoring goals doing what ever it takes. This guy will not back down against anybody. Call me OL School but I would take an 80% CD over ever forward but Jozy

  143. Thomas says:

    Anyone else read this transcript and think of Bill Belichick? The platitudes, the assurances everything will be revealed in due time, the sense that he knows everything going on but won’t reveal any bit of what he thinks about it? Just a thought.

  144. reverb says:

    Bradley:
    “There’s an old expression that the team picks the team.”

    Me:
    “Sh*t coach, I thought that was your job!? You don’t inspire me…”

  145. patrick says:

    To some extent yes. He is certainly a very measured man when he speaks. He’s said that he like to keep things close, so its no surprise he speaks in generalities and cliches. He’s been like a recent college grad train hopping through europe to see most of, if not all, the players in the pool so I’m confident he has a pulse on everyone, gooch davies and holden included. The camp is certainly going to be interesting and there are 3 or 4 questions left back, forward pool, 2v3 GK, etc.

  146. Matt Snyder says:

    Agreed; I am sure he will be. Buuut, even if he is…maybe Bradley couching his words and not promising to do so tells us something about posible reservations about Davies.

    We all may love the guy for his play, but there should have been and still be some question about his maturity and decision making now that all of the facts of the accident have come out. Out after curfew, involved w/drinking and driving …before a game???

  147. Matt Snyder says:

    I will 2nd that motion ! Can I have an Amen ??!!

    No doubt! Long-live the “Bease” from WC 2000 and 2001-2003 Champions League play.

    Gooooo back to the Dutch league!!

  148. asdfsad says:

    these were the dumbest answer someone could give in an interview, for every question he tried to answere he created two more

  149. Giveitupgoche says:

    “not one regular national team player.”

    Really? What was Kasey Keller? Keller, EJ and Olsen had just gone to the World Cup.

    Here’s the Copa America 2007 roster:

    Marvell Wynne, Jay DeMerit, Bobby Boswell, Benny Feilhaber, Heath Pearce, Danny Califf, Herculez Gomez, Eddie Johnson, Charlie Davies, Eddie Gaven, Jimmy Conrad, Jonathan Bornstein, Ben Olsen, Drew Moor, Sacha Kljestan, Kyle Beckerman, Kasey Keller, Ricardo Clark, Taylor Twellman, Justin Mapp, Brad Guzan, Lee Nguyen

    They didn’t do well but Demerit, Benny, Pearce, Gomez,EJ,CD, JB, Rico, and Guzan all have legitimate shots at going to the 2010 World Cup and 9-10 of them have either been regulars or have a shot to be one soon. As a developmental exercise I would say it was pretty succesful,all things considered.

    Look, Goche, it’s not like the US had a million players available in 2007. And the best of them had club committments.

    Bob brought his best to the Gold Cup to guarantee we would get to the Confederations Cup. Once that was done, Bob most likely had to send the best of his squad back to their clubs as two tournaments back to back like that in the summer is frowned on by most clubs. Whether you like it or not Bradley has to play ball with the clubs like all national team managers.

    Especially when you consider the travel involved in that Tournament.

    And if you don’t think that most top clubs don’t do exactly the same thing Bradley did, then you haven’t been watching the FA and Carling Cup competitons in England, for one example. All the big clubs use it to try out experimental teams and the like. Why? Because those tournaments mean nothing to them just like the Copa America meant to the US. I bet you can’t name the last three Copa America winners without looking them up.

    No one really cares about it. The USMNT is on a 4 year cycle and only the World Cup matters. The Copa America tournamnet was useful inthat regard.

    Besides the US did get something special out of the tournament. They got to see Bornstein do a pretty good job on Messi which perhaps has helped fuel his USMNT career.

  150. Thorfinn says:

    That’s really romantic Thor but it doesn’t square up with reality.

    Football isn’t like most American sports where you can come in for a limited amount of time, then get a blow for a while and then come back and do your old school Willis Reed imitation.

    You have to be there for the whole 90 (otherwise, you are automatically handicapping the team from the start) and, in the World Cup, go at least 3 games in a row over a very short period of time.

    And remember that the US and Charlie in particular, excel when they are more fit than the other guy, have more commitment and desire that anyone else and that requires fitness and strength. And Charlie may very well not have that. It may not be pretty but to paraphrase Tim Howard, they are what they are.

    This percentage crap is just that..crap. He’s either ready to go 90 or he doesn’t go. Besides, the Davies you all know and love took off as a starter not as a sub. You guys want a feel good ESPN outside the lines, RUDY, story. Me, I just want to win.

    This ain’t Charlie’s World Cup. It belongs to the team and if he can’t hold his own where it matters, on the field, then he does not belong there.

  151. Adalius says:

    Belichik knows exactly what he is saying and doing at all times. The fact that he doesn’t play to the media angers them because he thumbs his nose at their “power”. The “media” likes to think they represent the fan but they don’t. They represent themselves and they all want to move on to bigger and better things. In this regard they use people like coaches to help further their careers. The fact that Belichick won’t play along pisses them off.

    If Bradley is half as good a coach as Belichick then the USMNT will be just fine.

  152. Stu says:

    Come on Junior…its ok to laugh. Dont be so sensative.

  153. The Goche says:

    You are right in a lot of points.

    (Particularly when you aren’t comparing the Copa America to the Carling Cup or 3rd Round FA Cup matches. Also, really? EJ and Olson? Not exactly core players.)

    And I don’t mean to put the whole blame on Bob for the Copa team. That would certainly be unfair.

    What I put on Bob is a lack of growth through large parts of the cycle. We finally did show some improvement in the Confed Cup, and I hope we can bring that to the World Cup. But it is going to be hard not to remember all of the wasted chances if we show up looking listless in the World Cup.

    True. Several of the players that did better at the Copa America did end up become serious contenders on the team. So yes, there was some measure of scouting there.

    But, what the USMNT needs more than anything is competition, and you cannot tell me that in 2007 you weren’t sick to miss out on the chance for that.

    I realize Bob really didn’t have the opportunity to send his top team. But I think that we could have managed to send along a couple of veteran guys, with some international experience who were actually in the mix for 2010. A mixture of those guys and the prospects might have given the young guys a chance to show their stuff in the pressure of a good game. And you can’t tell me that the experience wouldn’t have been more beneficial if we were actually capable of putting up a fight.

    I just believe that any chance we have to play competitive matches against good competition, we should send the best team possible. Despite the roadblocks Bob faced, I don’t think you can suggest that was anything close to the best team possible, and you can’t suggest we didn’t miss out on an opportunity.

    Like I said at the top, if we come out in the World Cup and perform as we are capable, I’ll give Bob credit.

    But what I am saying is Bob put a lot of people against him early on. And really as of the early parts of the Confed Cup, we hadn’t shown much growth at all after the 06 Cup.

    I’m glad we improved at the Confed, and I hope it carries over to the World Cup. But 2 good games and another qualification from an easy confederation is not a ton to hang your hat on, and I hope that in the end, we don’t look back on missed chances.

  154. Joe Public says:

    Buddle is in the form of his life. Gomez is playing very well. EJ is playing every week and scoring with a European club that’s in a playoff. Jozy is Jozy.

    We don’t really need to take a chance on Charlie Davies. As much as I would like to say otherwise, it’s clear he won’t be ready. He’s young. It will take him at least a full season to get back into the kind of fitness and form he’ll need to play like he did before he was hurt. His target ought to be 2014.

    The real injury concern is Onyewu. What’s the story there?

  155. Isaac says:

    I didn’t get sick to see us not send a proper squad to Copa America and if we missed out on an opportunity, I think it’s one we can forgive. For all your talk of Bradley not sending out his best possible team against good competition in competitive matches, you forget that the Egypt game was pretty much a lost cause until Bradley sent out the lineup that most posters here were saying would get him fired. Instead, they competed, they fought, they played with heart and they won. Twice. As far as growth goes, this World Cup cycle was hardly ever going to be about dominating in every competition. It was about nurturing players for the next cycle while qualifying for the World Cup. Bradley did that and then some. Players will improve, but not all of them will improve enough to help he USA do well until the next cycle.

  156. Micah King says:

    I agree with you there. Dunga also said this too when talking about roster selections for Brazil.

  157. Micah King says:

    This is so not Stuart Holden, BAAAAHAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D

  158. Warren says:

    What part of ‘disaster waiting to happen’ (Bornstein against quality competition don’t you (and BB) see?

    I thought Bornstein’s string of near-disaster to full disaster games in the friendlies against capable opposition over the fall/winter would help folks like you and BB get over him.

    Accidents happen, as do mistakes, Bornstein against England = disaster for USMNT. The Dutch are good, Rooney is way better than their strikers, and Lennon is way faster.

  159. Micah King says:

    NO CASEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  160. Warren says:

    This is exactly what is wrong with fans STILL complaining about players like MB and Clark getting red cards for clumsy tackles.

    Here’s the math: Brazilian X = ~$60m

    MB or Clark = $5m together (ok, $10m)

    Just as in NBA where the stars get the calls, so too it goes when hard-tackling MLS players (Clark @Confed Cup) go up against…Brazilians or Italians, for example. The refs protect the stars from hack scrubs = USMNT.

    Hence, US is better off with 1 defensive minded ball-winning middie -and since MB never sits we know who that will be – and a second who can help hold the ball and play d, without getting cards. Like Edu, Torres, Feilhaber, Holden, Bedoya.

    Just becuase US talent pool is limited, and it is, doesn’t mean we need play BB kickball like we did before BB’s favs got red cards or injured last summer, and we actually started playing decently for 2 1/2 games (Egypt, Spain half of Brazil – second half when BB’s pets came out we reverted to…losing.

  161. Dave says:

    I was surprised too…it seems Bradley is concerned Gomez’s goals may be too one dimensional / poaching than anything else. Not sure I agree with that, especially since so many came off the bench.

    It’s not like we’ve got too many players that fall into the super-sub category. He’s demonstrated an ability to get into the flow of a match quickly and at forward.

    Seems like a trait the U.S could use.

  162. Warren says:

    I agree against the Dutch was the best I’ve seen Beasley look in years.

    But without much match play this spring I doubt he has that sharpness to his game now, and if it came down to Bedoya or Beasley for last spot in the middie line-up, we got to go with the young gun. If it’s down to Clark or Beasley, same call, we should go with the younger guy.

  163. Brian says:

    what a boring team

  164. The Goche says:

    I think you are remembering wrong.

    The only difference to the Egypt team from the previous rounds was that he added Davies and Guzan.

    I’ll admit I’m pretty sure I was surprised by Davies, but I don’t think anyone was mad at him for trying, even before CD scored. What he had done in the previous games was go 4-5-1, and no one wanted that. So I was just happy to have 2 forwards, especially since neither one was Ching.

    The only definite first team player missing was Bocanegra and he was injured I believe. Certainly the two squads have little in common.

    But, my main problem with Bob has always been our big game strategy as evidenced in the first two Confed Cup games. I.e., we’re outmatched, let’s sit back. But we were doing that without any defensive structure and with few legit attempts to hold possession or really do anything but kick it out.

    We learned from that and did better afterwards. But what scares me is that we’ve only done that for two games against non-CONCACAF opponents in real competition.

    I’ve said already several times that I believe the team may have learned from that and Bob could have us ready to go. That said, if we come out and show the same kind of showing we did against Brazil and Italy I’m going to hold Bob responsible.

    This is as much me acknowledging that if we do well in the Cup, that I was wrong about Bob all along.

    But what I’m also saying is that you cannot blame people for being frustrated with him basically right up until the Confederations Cup. And I’m not totally convinced by one good tournament that Bob has it all together.

    The Copa America is one example of one of the things that frustrated fans, particularly after the World Cup had us all wanting to prove that we could compete against legit teams. I guess it didn’t frustrate you guys because you apparently always knew he would figure it out.

    So, I defer to all of you in your infinite hindsight wisdom.

  165. sjack says:

    I don’t know why everyone keeps saying that they would take a player at anything less than 100% over other players.

    Isn’t the idea to get a player at 100%? If he’s at 75%, 85%, or 99%, then he’s not at full potential so why would you want him?

  166. Al Czervick says:

    Thank you. Bradley is terrible as a national team manager. I’d much rather have Arena, but really Kinsman is the choice. Just that sunal gilat joker will never give up his power.

  167. Pangloss says:

    “You’re an idiot and don’t know anything about the US team if you honestly think Michael Bradley won’t be a starter. ”

    Here is a definition of idiot:

    “An idiot, dolt, or dullard is a mentally deficient person, or someone who acts in a self-defeating or significantly counterproductive way. More humorous synonyms of the term include addlehead, blockhead, bonehead, deadhead, dimwit, dodo, dope, dummy, dunderhead, nincompoop, ninny, nitwit, numbskull, stupidhead, thickhead, and twit, among many others.”

    D may not know much about the game or the USMNT but he seems to be able to operate a computer, so your characterization of him as an “idiot” is a bit harsh, don’t you think?

    How about my favorite Ozzie expression, “f**kwit”?

    Oh, and Bradley is definitely a starter, on merit.

  168. Micah King says:

    Wait so Hoyos declined from playing for USA ? So I am guessing he wants to play for Argentina, and has duel American and Argentinian citizenship. Right ?

  169. cairo says:

    Look, if Davies isn’t fit, bring him along but don’t name him to the roster. I think Bradley would be a little crazy to put Davies on the roster when 1)he suffered major injuries and multiple surgeries, 2)hasn’t played a competitive match in what, 8 months? 3) only recently even began to train with his club team, and probably won’t even see the field this club season. No way he’ll be in any position to play the full 90, or probably even 60 at a WC Fitness level.

    That means Davies, at the absolute best, would be a late game substitute. Why should Bob choose that over a guy (Gomez) who led the Mexican League in scoring AS A LATE GAME SUBSTITUTE?” Or Buddle, who is in great form and has great chemistry with Landon Donovan?

    I’d bring Altidore, Gomez, Buddle, and maybe Ching (ugh, but he’s a scrapper, at least). Bring Davies as honorary team captain or something but not on the roster. Start Dempsey and Altidore, and bring on Gomez as a 2nd half sub for Altidore.

  170. Micah King says:

    Also, Isacc would you consider Spector as a left back contender ? And take Demerit out and put Boca in the middle and Spector at left back ? Sorry I am asking you a lot of questions. :)

  171. Dennis says:

    In a recent interview Altidore said he enjoys the unity among the players and feels that the bulk of the credit for the team’s cohesiveness is due to head coach Bob Bradley.
    “Bob does a good job in helping our mindset,” the striker said of the national team coach. “It starts with him and then works its way down to the players. It’s a credit to him and the rest of the coaching staff. All of the players get along and there is no drama. We all fight for each other.”

    As for the players picking the final team, I don’t think Bob meant the players select who comes to the camp, but once there, it becomes obvious to the players who is at the top and who is not. There is of course a bit of fiddling to take care of what the team needs, rather than simply selecting the “best” players. The team must have some guys who mostly defend, some who can help maintain possession and some who can score some goals.

  172. JamesC says:

    Saying that Michael Bradley “hasn’t even earned a starting role in my opinion at the WC” could be considered to be someone who acts in a significantly counterproductive way.

  173. strider says:

    So how many players have? Bornstein, Jozy, MB, are the ones that come immediately to mind. Anyone else? Don’t take this too seriously, but although people tag BB with this “bias” I hadn’t ever sat down and thought out who HAS played for him.

  174. strider says:

    I am not sure you are understanding this concept. It isn’t the guys pick who they like, but rather, based upon the way the play goes on the field you can tell who belongs and who doesn’t.

  175. Chosun says:

    Honestly, I think CD will opt out of the team if he doesn’t feel he’ll be able to contribute 100%. He’s still young, and knows that he has more WC’s ahead of him.

  176. Giveitupgoche says:

    “we should send the best team possible. Despite the roadblocks Bob faced, I don’t think you can suggest that was anything close to the best team possible, and you can’t suggest we didn’t miss out on an opportunity.”

    What makes you think this was not the best team possible? I’m not privy to the inner workings but then neither are you. I find it hard to believe Bradley would not have wanted the best but , as I pointed out before, sometimes you have to settle for less in your battle with the clubs for their players when your true focus is on the Confederations up and WC qualifying.

    “I’m glad we improved at the Confed, and I hope it carries over to the World Cup. But 2 good games and another qualification from an easy confederation is not a ton to hang your hat on, and I hope that in the end, we don’t look back on missed chances.”

    I fail to see how a good Copa America, which was 2 years before the Confed Cup, is more important to the improvement of our chances in the 2010 Cup than the good showing we had at the 2009 Confederations Cup. For example, Frank Simek was a hot Right Back prospect in 2007-2008 but then he got hurt in 2008 and now he may never play for the US again.

    The other thing that I’m really tired of in this endless mindless criticism of Bradley is that he hit his formula at the Confederations Cup but then that team was torn apart by injuries. Demerit and Onyewu, the heart of a stout defense have been hurt and we know about Charlie. All three are unlikely to be 100% for the World Cup. For a team with as litle talent available as the US that is devastating. Yes, I know you think Bradley is ignoring some enormous gold mine of untapped US talent. Tell me where it is? And I would ask you to look at Englands talent pool and tell me how many of their discards ( keepers aside) would walk right into the USMNT.

    The US should have had to invite only 25 or so players to this upcoming camp and those last 3 friendlies should have been strategy tuneups, not tryouts. Bradley is basically left with jury rigging a team for the World Cup. If you’re still mad about the Copa America, well, in football terms that was almost another era ago. Remind me never to have you get mad at me. It’s obvious you hold a grudge forever.

  177. Butch says:

    Hahnemann over Howard in goal.

  178. The Goche says:

    I don’t even know where you have gotten half of that stuff.

    1. Nowhere have I ever suggested the Copa was more important than the Confed Cup. I would say without reservation the Confed Cup was more important. But I also don’t know why it has to be one or the other. It doesn’t. I’m in no way complaining about favoring the Gold Cup over the Copa America. All I said is it was an opportunity that was missed and we should take every opportunity we get.

    2. That little diatribe at the end has absolutely nothing to do with me. I understand injuries. I also understand that our competition will be tough and not just England. If we are just outmatched talentwise at the Cup, I will not hold Bob responsible for that, as long as we play good soccer. For major portions of qualifying we got by playing mediocrely and we were downright terrible in the first two games of the Confed Cup. If we come out with shape and confidence like we did against Spain and Brazil the second time, I will be fine with that.

    I don’t know that it makes sense to completely dismiss anything in the current world cup cycle as “an era ago.”

    But fine, you like Bob. I didn’t like him at first, now think he’s fine, but he still needs to prove something. I don’t see the big deal. So chill out.

  179. Pangloss says:

    How? It is posited as an opinion. Every person has a sovereign right to their opinion.

    Of course, no one has has to give that opinion any credit whatsoever.

    So at end of the day ( a Bradelyism), D ( which no doubt stands for DOLT) isn’t counterproductive because no one cares what he thinks. I still believe D falls just a bit short of the standard for full fledged, card carying, idiocy.

    What is the old cliche? A day late and a dollar short?

  180. Giveitupgoche... says:

    “But I also don’t know why it has to be one or the other.”

    Your basic premise is flawed. You seem to think the US had plenty of top guys available for the entire summer. You also seem to assume the US can call in everyone they want, for however long they want, whenever they want. This is not the case.

    That was two major tournaments back to back in the summer of 2007. It is often hard for national teams to get all their players for one major tournament, let alone two back to back. Now if you are Argentina or Brazil and have more internationl level players than you know what to do with in your player pool that is one thing.

    But few countries are in that position, certainly not the US who at the time had maybe one above average international standard non-keeper and that was Donovan. And only a fool would keep him him all summer for two major tournaments. He’s not a robot you know.

    It had to be one or the other, in terms of fielding a really competitive team and the Gold Cup was always going to be #1.

    “All I said is it was an opportunity that was missed and we should take every opportunity we get.”

    The US took advantage of that opportunity get some valuable experience for players, some of whom are now important members of the team.