Thoughts on the U.S. World Cup roster

USAvsNetherlandsSquad (ISIphotos.com)

Photo by John Todd/ISIphotos.com

Now that we have had a few hours to digest the selections made by Bob Bradley for the 23-man World Cup roster, it is time to take a step back and think about what the selections mean, and what the team looks like now.

Here is my piece for Fox Soccer on the selections and the squad the United States will be taking to South Africa.

Here are some more thoughts as I make the trip down to Philadelphia for Saturday's match vs. Turkey (and sit in some brutal New York traffic):

All eleven starters from the U.S. team's friendly loss to the Netherlands made the World Cup team. Perhaps we should have given Findley more credit for being higher up in the pecking order than we thought based on the start in that match.

I'm still surprised about Brian Ching. What's funny is that when Bob Bradley spoke after Tuesday's match and talked about a forward being able to make the transition to the international level, most observers thought his comments were subtly pointed at Edson Buddle. Listening to them now, they sound very much like comments about Ching.

One player who wasn't surprised by the forward selections was Tim Howard, who had talked up the forwards all week. Howard believes the U.S. team is in great position to benefit from two in-form strikes like Buddle and Gomez.

Talking to Robbie Findley about his selection, I noticed a word tattoed on his left hand. The word was humility, and talking to the RSL striker I found a grounded player who was certainly a surprising pick, but who isn't likely to take the selection for granted.

Will Findley make an impact? Based on the past few months it's hard to believe so, but remembering the Findley who helped RSL win the MLS Cup title, it isn't as if he's completely incapable of contributing when healthy.

Alejandro Bedoya did impress in camp, but his relative inexperience proved too much to overcome. I would put good money on him continuing to progress and being a strong candidate in 2014.

Jonathan Bornstein goes as the seventh defender, but at this point I really don't see him getting minutes in the World Cup. He should get a look in the Turkey game as a sub, but at this point it's tough to see him being used much.

As much of a concern as left back is, Beasley's form is promising for the position. Not just because he could offer an option there, but if he starts on the left flank he can provide defensive support for Carlos Bocanegra or Jonathan Spector against England's speedy right wingers. He certainly bailed his teammates out repeatedly by tracking back and

—————

Now that you have had some time to soak in the 23-man roster, what do you think of the group? Still think Ching should have made the 23? Think Findley will surprise?

Share your thoughts below.

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189 Responses to Thoughts on the U.S. World Cup roster

  1. Peter says:

    Typo in Philadelphia. Ben Franklin is spinning in his grave!

    (SBI-Thanks Peter.)

  2. JG says:

    Praying Bornstein doesn’t come close to seeing the field in South Africa

  3. aristophanes says:

    I completely agree about Beas. He was doing a lot of defensive work on the flank last night.

  4. kpugs says:

    I’m not going to complain (gasp!). I think our starters and the only subs that will be used in South Africa are capable, and I love the way our left and right midfielders can cover the entire field and help out the defense, which will ease the pressure on the outside defenders, the same way our central midfielders help out the center backs.

    Hope to bump into you Saturday Ives, good stuff.

  5. dbex says:

    Will be interesting to see if the inclusion of 5 “forwards” means that Dempsey starts at wing, and Holden is…where? On the bench? I think that would be a shame.

    Anyone know if the team is going to do any kind of meet & greet in DC around their White House visit? Would love to stop by and give them best wishes.

  6. kfly says:

    Beasley didn’t do much offensively last night, but I, too, was very impressed with his defensive work. He seems to have become a smarter player since last summer, when he was essentially crucified for his play against Brazil (and rightfully so; that debacle still haunts me). I think we should start him on the left, Lando on the right, and Deuce up top vs. Turkey and Australia, and see how that goes. Or we could have Landon as an attacking midfielder/withdrawn forward in a 4-1-4-1 formation reminiscent of Spain last summer, and have Deuce at RW.

  7. BetaMale says:

    Haven’t read from any of the major journalists any concern about our back line. Are we just ignoring the problem and hoping it goes away.

  8. Brad says:

    Ives, do you think having the speedy Findley in practice and scrimmages to mimic Walcott/Lennon was a factor? Might help Bocanegra (or whoever) get used to dealing with a fast player taking the ball right at him.

  9. thrill says:

    After thinking about these picks, I predict England for the win.

  10. Rhino says:

    Gooch looked shaky last night … here’s to hoping he can hold his own in South Africa.

  11. Brad says:

    I hope we see the Dempsey-up-top-with-Holden-in-mid line up against Turkey, would make me feel better about Bob’s thinking for the WC line up…

  12. dbag says:

    Damn you Rongen for choosing mostly MLS scrubs over Subotic in 2007. Can Brian Mcbride find a way in before June 1st. JK

  13. luis.. says:

    the defense looked terrible last night..i hope we can fix that by june 12th..i like most of the picks but i think findley should be replaced by ching..

  14. jcd says:

    I’ve been pissed about this all day.

  15. Ballzwerth Berrodino says:

    I am really freaking concerned about the back 4. How the hell does Jonathon Monerstein sneak on the plane? He’s done nothing but get carved up while wearing the USA jersey.

  16. johnnycougar says:

    Gotta have the best players see the field, so hopefully Dempsey will be up top and Holden will play on the right. Gomez and Findley both have promise as super subs but I’d almost see them coming on for Altidore more than Dempsey. I’d be surprised if Buddle gets any PT in South Africa.

  17. Jk3 says:

    I don’t recall a single mention of Findley on last night’s telecast. The only place talking about him was here in SLC.

    Hopefully he’ll start to find his form even though he won’t see many minutes unless we have a route on our hands.

  18. AKDN says:

    This angers me every time I hear about it.

  19. AKDN says:

    He didn’t play last night.

  20. Jonesta says:

    This is simply untrue. Gooch looked bad on two aerial plays reminiscent of his injury one resulting in a goal but if he can get over that fear or whatever he will be fine. Clarence Goodson played very well himself and Dolo looked fine as well.

    The problems almost entirely came from the left back position manned by Bornstein and then Pearce. The Gooch goal wouldn’t ahve happened had Bornstein not been skinned alive and Goodson forced to “foul” (it was a bit suspect). Pearce also looked sad with his horrible challenge getting walked around and resulting in a goal as well. Also Pearce was beaten on a diagonal run resulting in yet another goal (though replay showed the guy offside and it shouldn’t have counted). That is three goals resulting from sloppy play on the left wing. The fourth goal was a result of a player being thrown into makeshift CB duty and our team being pushed up for an equalizer and can be thrown out. Fix the left back position and we win this game handily.

  21. braden says:

    On the bright side, Eddie Johnson’s not going…

  22. RAW says:

    What are your plans for going to Philly? Is anyone planning on heading there on Friday?

  23. Pappajohn says:

    Beasley plays great defense when he is playing left mid, but to have him as the left defensive back would be a disaster. He would not be as good as Bornstein. I have horrible memories of him playing left back in the past. Keep him at left mid and let him drop back to help the left back.

  24. senevada says:

    …look harder maybe? Have definitely seen concern expressed over the defense in a number of spots.

  25. Nate M says:

    I miss Reyna!

    The quality of the top players selected is on average better than in the past but would be so much better with a Reyna type to tie them all together…

  26. Brian says:

    Lol there was a guy who yesterday said in the game day thread, “wouldn’t be scary if Findley didn’t play because he is already a lock”. Whoever you are sir, you are a prophet.

  27. art says:

    Not sure I agree the picks guarantee a loss but our current defense certainly will; England took apart Mexico’s D let’s not forget and they’re arguably better than us in that phase of the game, right now, considering form and fitness.

  28. Brian says:

    I think Bonerstein sounds better. Kind like Marty Ballstein

  29. AngelUSAfan says:

    Well I like the Choise that Bob Bradley make, I see why he choose Findley for the roster for S.A. because he has the same speed and mobile like Davis. Even tho I would like Bedoya instead of him. and just take three striker, Buddle, Altidore and Gomez and Use Dempsey, Donovan, and maybe Beasley (which I think he has the same quality as Davis to be striker). other then that I think we have a good squad, no a squad that can strike fear but a good squad that can be competative. Please we need Bob to be more accurate with his subs and game plans especially how to work with the time if the USA is wining.

  30. This Guy says:

    PTI just talked about the backline. It’s only gonna get worse once Gooch is ruled out.

  31. This Guy says:

    I don’t think that guy will be back. He took quite a lashing for saying that too.

  32. This Guy says:

    I love the squad because Ching is not in it. Our backline is very vulnerable thought.

    Onyewu doesn’t look fit (70% at best).
    No Onyewu means we’ll probably see:

    Dolo-Boca-Goodson-Spector against England. Crouch could cause problems without Goodson marking him tight.

  33. Patrick says:

    None of these fringe picks changes our top 12, 13 players.

    But thanks for the pessimism.

  34. Brooklyn Dave says:

    I think the thing to remember is that starting lineups will change game to game, as they always do for the US at the World Cup, and probably 14-16 guys will get a start. In 2006 15 guys got a start over the three games of group play. I can’t find the 2002 lineups online, but I’d bet it was 15-16 guys over the course of the five games. So if Holden doesn’t start against England, he may very well start against Slovenia while Dempsey moves up top and Buddle or whoever goes to the bench.

  35. Lester says:

    I’m not as worried about our backline as everyone else. From what I’ve heard, Jay Demerit played well for Watford this season, and Bocanegra was doing well before his injury (I think recovery time is fast for a hernia), plus Jonathan Spector did okay for West Ham, despite some bad games towards the end. All the Czech’s goals involved mistakes by our left side which can be taken care of if Bocanegra plays there. I’m still optimistic for the WC.

  36. chad says:

    BORNSTEIN MUST BE PUTTING HAPPY PILLS ON BB DRINKS, I may want one or two of those and then beat the crap out of bornstein for being there

  37. dantheblue says:

    Second guessing and negativity won’t help us get to the coveted goal of advancing and competing to be in the knockout stages. We learned this summer that anything is possible so, in my opinion, stop griping and move on.

    I support this team regardless of my opinions.

  38. FattyMatty says:

    I think against England you play Jozy up top with Dempsey as a withdrawn forward / CAM. Put LD and Holden on the wings and Clark / Edu with Bradley in the middle.

    Back line from left to right: Spector, Boca, Demerit, Dolo.

    I’m sorry, but unless Gooch picks it up in the next two friendlies, he is a liability. If you can’t slide a credit card under his feet when he jumps, England will destroy us on set pieces. Both Boca and Demerit are strong in the air. Both Holden and Beas showed they are willing to track back on D and will need to do so to help out Spector.

    But as I said, set pieces will be the determining factor in the England match. A point out of this match should be considered a success. Clog the middle, deny service from the wings and win the headers in the back, and hope to spring a succesful counter. Getting beat 3-0 means Germany 2006 all over again. We can play with 2 forwards in the other group matches. And with additional couple of weeks of training for Gooch he’ll get his hops back.

  39. braden says:

    I agree completely. I’m not freaking out about our back line unless I see Bornstein playing. I thought Goodson looked very good. Very quick to balls in the air, won most headers, and he even cleaned up a few times when Gooch was MIA.

    Now, I’d rest a lot better at night if Ives wouldn’t keep bringing up the “Beasley as left back” stuff. That gives me nightmares…

  40. max says:

    Second vote for Bonerstein.

  41. 4now says:

    Return of the X-mas tree?
    (4-3-3 in attack)
    (4-5-1 in defense)

    Altidore
    Dempsey Donovan
    Beasley Bradley Holden
    Spector Boca GooMerit Dolo
    Howard

  42. BCC says:

    You’re right. We should forfeit and apologize for wasting everyone’s time.

  43. dumberer says:

    I just became dumber reading this post.

  44. enar says:

    Can writers and fans stop being stupid about putting Beasley at left back. IT DOESNT WORK BOB HAS TRIED THAT ALREADY. STOP IT ENOUGH. NO MORE plz

  45. This Guy says:

    What’s the point of any discussion?
    If the answer is always 2nd guessing won’t help. You’ve just ruled out the necessity for an SBI website along with the importance of verbal human interaction as a whole.

    Have your coffee yet?

  46. This Guy says:

    I like this lineup for Alg and Slovenia but against England, it will be a festival of crosses to Crouch.

  47. FulhamPete says:

    “A point out of this match should be considered a success.”

    One point earned for us is two points lost in the eyes of the English. That’s ALWAYS a good thing, particularly because it’s going to stick in their craw, and force them to LIGHT OFF on ALG and SVN.

    Then WE need to beat one and draw another to go through. Something entirely within our capabilities.

  48. Brian says:

    ^This.

    As a Galaxy fan, I’m proud of Buddle but I don’t see how he get’s any playing time. I think you have to start Holden. He’s just too good to sit on the bench. That means Dempsey starts up top. Gomez seems like the best option for when it’s late and we really need a goal. I don’t know what it is but he always seems to be in the right place at the right time. And you know he’s going to be the hungriest player on the team.

    As for Findley, I’m not really sure when Bob would use him. There’s no way he starts. Maybe against a defense that has problems with speed?

  49. Supsam says:

    Well the world Cup roster is set in stone (barring injury). Dissing our players must now stop. Our guys of the stars and stripes need all the support they can get! Lets make some noise in South Africa!!!!

  50. mcjoness says:

    I’d wager you could choise (sp?) a worse one.

  51. 87_no_spice says:

    I’m not convinced Gooch is a problem. He was fouled on that goal big time.

    The more I think about it, the more I like Findley. Without Davies, we have the need for speed.

    Defense in general is the worry. We’ve basically gotten into the habit of shipping about three per game as of late. That’s a lot to ask our front line to cover up. Brazil shoulda had four in a half and Honduras missed a PK or it would be worse.

  52. thrill says:

    Since when have the starting-11 played all the way through … the second-11 need to look like the starting-11 except hungry.

  53. Dave says:

    Don’t be surprised if Holden starts with Bradley – that’s his position with Bolton after all. He offers a higher work rate and better set pieces than Clark / Edu.

    I think if Gooch struggles you will see:

    dolo/—Goodson/Boca—-DeMerit—Boca/Spector

    Dempsey—-Holden—-Bradley—-Donovan

    Buddle—-Altidore

    I think Demerits eye injury stuff is being overstated. He’s 97% as far as I’ve read.

    Gomez as a supersub.

  54. 87_no_spice says:

    But as long as BB brings Torres, he can pick anyone he wants (even Bornstein…). Did you see the video where Torres called the Champions League final?!! The guy brings his ability to see the future to the pitch where he sees plays develop before they happen.

  55. FulhamPete says:

    I wish people would get off Bornstein’s back. He’s the next best LB we have after Boca and Spector (and MAYBE Beas). But if they’re needed elsewhere, there MUST be a back-up plan.

    I think JB was pencilled in at spot #23 ages ago, and the ching/findley/bedoya/buddle/gomez debate was for the spots ahead of him. He’s NOT going to play, but he’s there so we don’t absolutely s#!7 ourselves if we have a bad case of injuries.

    If we’re playing Findley or Bornstein (or Benny?) then we’re having a nightmare WC and are just glad that we’ve only to field a team for three games. THEY are practice players, and the best we can do for a second 11.

    BTW, who’s the guy on the sidelines getting BB’s water when it 11 v 11 scrimmage? I say it’s Findley.

    Go ahead kids, try this one at home! Take your starting 11, put ‘em on one side. Make a lineup with the rest of the players. Who gets left out?

    Findley.

  56. thrill says:

    I envision Ives cackling each time he types it.

  57. nebraskacoog says:

    Best post on what is the most likelyand best scenario. BB is going to play guys who can track back and play D against England, hoping for a tie at worst and a win on counter-attacks.

  58. BrianVT says:

    Just curious… …is there any way that Goodson can play left back? Please excuse my ignorance and kindly advise.

  59. Goalscorer24 says:

    Bradley said. “Brian has been such an important player, but it’s tough when you have an injury at an inopportune time.”

    It looks like Brian Ching’s injury came into play on the decision to not bring him.

  60. Thorpinski says:

    Anyway we can drop Gooch as an injured player and invite Omar or Alston?

  61. Brian says:

    My squad for England:

    ————Howard———-
    Spector–Gooch-DeMerit–Boca

    Holden—Edu—Bradley-Landon

    ———Jozy—–Dempsey—-

    SUBS:
    Hahnemann (GK)
    Cherundolo (RB)
    Goodson (CB)
    Clark (CM)
    Beasley (LM/RM)
    Gomez (ST)
    Feilhaber (CM)

    Reserves:
    Guzan (GK)
    Bornstein (LB)
    Torres (CM)
    Buddle (ST)
    Findley (ST)

    The most important thing to me is making sure Bornstein doesn’t see the field. If Gooch and DeMerit are healthy, then Bocanegra starts at left back. If Gooch and DeMerit aren’t ready to go, then bring in Goodson, or move Spector to CB and start Dolo at RB. If Boca’s hernia problem is worse than we think, then start Spector at left back and start Dolo at RB.

    I think Holden has to start. He looks like he’s 100% and he and Dempsey are better than any of our strikers so they both have to be on the field. Spector starts because he provides better service to the box. I’m not too worried about his bad season with West Ham, because it was mostly at LB that he played, and even if injuries force him to play LB for us, I think the damage can be limited by putting someone who will track back on the left like Beasley or Donovan.

    Hahnemann gets the backup goalkeeper spot because I was not impressed with Guzan.

    Goodson needs to be on the bench due to injury concerns to DeMerit, Gooch and Bocanegra. Plus if we need a goal late we can put him in the box on set pieces and hope he creates something.

    Cherundolo needs to be on the bench if he’s not a starter. Having him there allows us to put him at RB and move Spector to CB or LB in case something happens to Bocanegra, Gooch or DeMerit.

    Clark is there to provide defensive mid cover if Bradley or Edu get carded or get injured. He would also be a great late game sub if we’re up and need to hold a lead.

    Beasley looked good last night. He’ll provide good energy off the bench. Too bad we couldn’t Beasley, Dempsey, Holden and Donovan. Outside mid seems to be the deepest position on the team.

    Gomez, the Magic Man, because he’s our best forward option not named Jozy or Dempsey. Plus everyone knows he’ll work his tail off.

    It was a toss up between Feilhaber and Torres. I chose Feilhaber because I feel like he’d do better with the size of England.

  62. Brian says:

    Lol well he was right wasn’t he?

  63. chupacabra says:

    I’m not concerned about Findley. He will see little if any playing time in South Africa (as would have Ching if he were selected instead). The reason why I like Bradley’s choice of Findley over Ching is that it looks towards the USMNT’s future. The experience will motivate Findley to improve and it will be a good bonding experience that will help him gell with the team. Should Findley make it to the 2014 squad, he’ll already have some valuable experience under his belt and he’ll know what to expect. Face it – Ching will not be part of the 2014 World Cup roster so it’s better to think a little down the road. Findley has potential to grow. All Ching can do at this point is go. Thanks Brian for some of your service in the past, but it’s time to make room for the new blood.

  64. AngelUSAfan says:

    I know dumberer I just read myself and I do feel dumb, sorry I had to type fast cause I’m at work and I don’t have much time for proof reading or grammer sorry but I hope you got the Idea. LMAO

  65. Sergio of SF says:

    Still upset about Ching. I was seriously thinking of getting a number 11 jersey, but now I may go with a Dempsey or Donovan. It will be interesting to see how well Buddle does with the starters.

  66. chupacabra says:

    His name should have been ABortstein.

  67. ez says:

    its Morry

  68. ShaggyReAL says:

    So basically what you’re saying is one of the 7 guys left off the SA roster would’ve changed your opinion on the results for the England game?? Please tell me who the hell that is, we all want to know?
    :)

  69. jts says:

    So where do you have Guzan playing in the field ahead of Findley? (Assuming Marcus is 2nd keeper)

  70. Andrew H. says:

    I wasn’t that guy, but I did include Findley in my 23 last night, as Boca was saying really good things about him and we need a speed option off the bench.

  71. Ethan says:

    Onyewuwasn’t bad….Everyones gives up a goal sometimes and if it wasnt for that goal nobody would be freaking out. He jumped to late and then was being pulled down. It’s his first game back in 7 months you should expect a little rust. Onyewu will play 90 Minutes in Philly and like 65 again in South Africa to keep him healthy..

  72. dbag says:

    Omar and Alston are still a work in progress.

  73. dbag says:

    I think Clark should get a look until Edu controls his Gattuso tackles.

  74. Andy says:

    LOL! There’s 3 keepers in the 23, Pete, so the odd man out is always a keeper.

  75. Dinho says:

    Great post. I agree wholeheartedly. I also think Torres v. Feilhaber is a tough call.

  76. Andy says:

    This sounds crazy, even to me, but I think Findley starts up top with Jozy. Holden comes off the bench about the 65th minute for one of the forwards, moving Dempsey up top for the last 20-30 minutes.

    Not saying its how *I* would do it, but its my prediction nonetheless.

  77. Thorpinski says:

    True.. and so are Gooch and Bornstein

  78. jigga says:

    I’m gonna go out tonight and get a girl preggers. Raise that lil’ guy to be a left back. We’ll be covered by the 2030 World Cup no problem.

  79. BetaMale says:

    haha, no lie. I’m definitely going to teach my kid to play with his left. He’ll be the best left footed player in US history

  80. phil says:

    great post.

  81. Joe Williams says:

    Agree with the reserves, the only tough one is Torres but I don’t know who else I’d leave off. As for the starting lineup, as much as I like Holden and think he should be the starter against Slovenia and Algeria, I might actually start Beasley on the left and Landon on the right vs. England to try to give us more a little more pace on the counter. Holden would come on for Beasley eventually and move Landon to the left, sooner rather than later if DeMarcus wasn’t playing well. Beasley is adept enough at tracking back, but I also think there’s going to be some open space as England pushes forward and he is one of our best options to exploit it.

  82. FulhamPete says:

    oops right

    I’d STILL leave Findley out.

  83. phil says:

    um… where have you been? Clark is this as big a card target as Mastroeni was. Seems like in internationals when he gets within a yard of a player the ref pulls out a red card. I’m not saying it’s his fault, but he hasn’t had enough playing time to erase that reputation the way Junior Bradley has.

  84. Josh says:

    Brad ftw! Seriously, this is a great point, and one that I don’t think anybody else has made–Findley seems unlikely to get on the field anyway, but as a player who’s got speed to burn but can’t cross, he’s a perfect stand-in for Walcott/Lennon. Excellent point.

  85. phil says:

    I’mm make a deal with you. I’ll stop b!tch!ng about JB when he starts looking less like a chicken with his head cut off and more like a solid reliable left back that can play on the international level. I’m not saying he won’t be that someday, but he just isn’t now.

  86. phil says:

    Lichaj?

  87. nynow says:

    We have that player in Torres, but BB isn’t prepared to give up the classic American (direct) system to build through the central midfield.

    I think with commitment (more than the one half v Costa Rica I believe???) this is the best lineup we have:

    Spector – Gooch – Demerit – Boca

    Bradley – Edu – Torres

    Donovan – Dempsey

    Altidore

    Defensively we drop Donovan on the right and shift Torres out left. Then counter attack like hell when Bradley and Edu win balls with Torres’ passing, Donovan’s speed, Dempsey’s skill and Altidore’s strength.

  88. Fireball says:

    4 forwards taken means that Dempsey is not starting up top. I think we should probably get used to that idea.

  89. GoGunners says:

    +1 our sons can battle it out

  90. agnigrin says:

    Do you remember that last minute tying goal vs Costa Rica in the last game of qualifying?

    Granted JB played poorly yesterday and on others but he has done well on other occasions!

  91. Wade says:

    ———-Howard————

    Dolo–DeMerit–Gooch—Boca

    —–Edu—–Bradley——-

    Donovan———–Beasley–

    ———Dempsey———–

    ———Jozy————–

    Only change I can see from this line up verse England is Clark for Edu (assuming everyone is healthy). Donovan and Dempsey will float and switch with each other during the game (maybe even with Beas, too). Beasley will provide cover for speed on the left from England’s right sided wingers–plus, he’s looked like the Beas of old the past two games (and when he got time in Scotland) and that’s the best left sided midfielder we have if Dempsey or Donovan has to move up top (and maybe even if they don’t). Holden, Clark or Edu, Gomez, Buddle, Feilhaber, Torres will be the subs used depending on what happens during the game.

    Bradley will go with experience in the World Cup–especially in the first game. I don’t see this line up changing much through the tournament… Maybe Clarke & Holden will get some starts. That’s about it.

  92. Benjamin says:

    Aren’t there always players on every team that never see a minute at the World Cup? Neither of our backup keepers will. Of the field players, I would say that Findley, Bornstein, and either Feilhaber or Torres, depending on Bob’s mood, are all candidates to play little or no role in South Africa.

    The most interesting questions left: Who pairs with Bradley? Edu seems to bet he most versatile of the options. Who starts up top with Altidore? No clue, but if it is a true forward and not Dempsey, I would guess that at some point, Holden comes in and Dempsey goes up front. Who starts at left back? Probably Bocanegra, but don’t count out Spector. Who are the top subs? I am thinking Beasley and Holden will see minutes in every group game; after that, Gomez, for me, is the top forward off the bench, and then a central midfielder, depending on the situation and flow of the game.

  93. D says:

    That game was in England, which gives England at least a goal advantage.

  94. K1p says:

    Your assumption is correct. Crazy. Findley has been all flash, no substance. I hope that changes. I believe he is just a fast person to practice against.

  95. Lil' Zeke says:

    Any chance Findley has secret defensive chops?

  96. phil says:

    okay I’m thinking a little out of the box here, but what about this for England?

    My squad for England:

    ————Howard———-
    —-Spector–DeMerit–Boca—-
    ————-Edu————
    Donovan-Holden—Bradley-Beasely
    ——–Jozy—–Dempsey—-

    SUBS:
    Hahnemann (GK)
    Cherundolo (RB)
    Goodson (CB)
    Clark (CM)
    Gomez (ST)
    Feilhaber (CM)

    My rationale: Beasely and Donovan have both shown a great ability to track back on defense. So, tactically allow Spector DeMerit and Boca to essentially act at 3 center backs — staying home and wait for the inevitable attack to come to them. Spector can trail on counter and Boca can get forward for set plays, but by and large stay home and let the inevitable attack come to them. Edu has shown the ability to run box to box all night and it would allow for Bradley and Holden to play farther up the field. Lastly, this lineup essentially allows each player to be where they are most comfortable.

    Thoughts?

    Reserves:
    Guzan (GK)
    Bornstein (LB)
    Torres (CM)
    Buddle (ST)
    Findley (ST)

  97. sandtrout says:

    Got to find a way for Holden to start. To me, he looks confident, skilled, energetic, fast. He’s got it all. I know it’s not going to happen, but how about Holden in a center mid slot? He could be the team’s future creative force. I wish Bradley would consider putting his son in a strictly defensive-mid role.

    It’s great to have so many options in the midfield. Too bad we’re so strapped on defense and at forward.

  98. Caesar Augustus says:

    Dempsey wins goal of the season for Fulham!

    link to fulhamfc.com

  99. DingDong says:

    Or at least that the injury was useful for BB in softening the blow.

  100. UMSNT4life says:

    Referencing anything the US did in 2006 is completely ludicrous. That being said, I can see different starting lineups for different opponents. Just saying…

  101. D says:

    He said the same thing about Davies. Essentially, Davies wasn’t cleared, so I couldn’t bring him. Ching has injury concerns can’t bring him.

  102. Jon says:

    I agree with you 100%. I am looking for Spector out there at left back and Cherundolo on the right with some Gooch/DeMerit/Goodson mix in the Center. Yes, I did leave of Boca, I don’t want to see him flappin’ out there on the left either, and we have better options in the center, IMO.

  103. d says:

    Not sure, but Goodsen is really big for a LB. He is 6’4, I have never seen a LB that big. The position is kinda like cornerback, as coaches tend to like smaller, quicker guys that can move thier hips (able to turn quickly and run)

  104. ChrisSl says:

    Yeah, why let facts get in the way of a good arguement.

  105. wally says:

    bonerstein

  106. heman says:

    thats a good call

  107. Ballzwerth Berrodino says:

    All’s Little Bonerstink has done is get exposed by flankers and attacking players.

  108. Ballzwerth Berrodino says:

    bornstein banned from playing. agreed

  109. Ballzwerth Berrodino says:

    I think I’m gonna get a bonerstein jersey and rock it at this weekend’s game. He is my favorite player.

  110. Nate M says:

    I’m right there with you on Torres.

  111. BK says:

    What are the announcers going to talk about now? Without the first Hawaiian to play for the national team, they’ll be silent.

    I think what it boiled down to was that you have altidore, buddle, and ching being decent hold up men. And then you have gomez (a hard worker) and findley (a speedster). So, of the three that are hold up men, which two have more speed and bring more to the table? I feel for Ching, but I can def see the logic.

    Now, I wish we could put anyone in for bornstein, but like Ives said, I hope he doesn’t sniff the field or were screwed.

  112. Nate M says:

    Arena tried it too. If I remember correctly, it was through Beasley at left back that the Czechs got their first goal in 2006.

    He can fill the role temporarily to allow late game tactic shifts but he’s not a keeper there.

  113. Isaac says:

    Something I saw last night that I’ve been wanting to see for a while is Holden in central midfield. He fit in pretty well there, completely disguising the fact that the USA didn’t actually have a central midfielder who specializes in terms of defense. What I would like to see the USA work Saturday and maybe even for the World Cup is this:

    ————————–Altidore————————-

    —————–Dempsey————Donovan—————-

    —————–Bradley————Holden—————–

    —————————-Edu—————————-

    Beasley———-Bocanegra——-Onyewu———-Cherundolo

    ————————–Howard—————————

    Bradley and Holden have turned it to be the best two-way midfielders the USA have and each have a very complete skill set. Defensively speaking, they bring a lot of bite, strength, and excellent ability to win balls in the midfield. Going forward, they have vision, skill, pace and a very direct, dynamic attacking style that suits the USA. Moreover, they have the intangibles required for the position, showing a high work rate, professionalism, and maturity. I seem to remember the USA using Claudio Reyna and John O’Brien, both notorious as two-way central midfielders, right in front of Pablo Mastroeni. It seemed to work pretty well. I know somebody is going to say that Holden crosses excellently and I’m not going to try to argue that, but he brings so many other abilities to the table that I sometimes wonder if playing him as a classic flank player limits him. Stuart Holden did pretty well in a central role just in front of a defensive midfielder in the MLS, pretty similar to the role he’ll play here. This lineup also gives a bit more freedom to Donovan and Dempsey in the attack, and while they should still help on defense, it’s not quite as detrimental to the defense seeing as how there is more than just two players who are designated to contribute on both sides of the ball. Donovan( yes Donovan) and Dempsey were both prone to blowing their defensive assignments, but they clearly had an influence on the attack so I think this lineup is beneficial to every one.

    Outside of the central midfield, Beasley at left back is something I’d like to see. His defensive qualities have always shone through, even in the poorest of form. Even in the World Cup 2006, the large consensus was that he played poorly overall on offense, but was outstanding defensively. As a midfielder, he may be falling behind players like Holden and Feilhaber in terms of offensive ability, but, among the USA’s fullbacks, he’d have the best ability in the attack. People are going to say that he did poorly at left back, but honestly, he was just in bad form all together. Not only is he sharp technically again, but his head is straight, so I think he’ll be a lot better prepped to deal in that position. Not only would I like to see this lineup, but with another very shaky performance from Bornstein, Spector not showing well at left back for West Ham, and DeMerit a question due to his eye, I think there is about a 50/50 chance he goes with Beasley against the Turks.

    Something else I’d like to say is that Cherundolo looked very smooth on the ball against the Czechs. Was in some tight spaces and normally found a way out by either working a one-two with someone, or dribbling his way out, quite literally pirouetting along the side line once or twice. He’s definitely our starting right back.

  114. Joe says:

    It’s actually Maury

  115. Isaac says:

    I’m actually Bornstein fan, but whatever happened to Bornstink? Possibly Bonerstink?

  116. jig says:

    that looks nice if this were FIFA, but you cant just all of a sudden change a formation and expect the players in it to function even close to their capabilities.

    Also, when you play three at the back it becomes very easy for the wingers to get sacrificed. They need to do so much running. Donovan needs to spend as much of his energy as he can attacking, playing him out there prevents that.

    Third, you dont want your backline to “wait” for anything. Did you see Inter against Bayern? The backline was constantly shifting, constantly pushing forward to together either to apply pressure high enough up in areas where Bayerns attackers werent so dangerous, or to play the offside trap. Nothing good can happen when your backline waits. If Gooch is doing any sort of waiting, whoever is running at him is going right past him.

  117. Zach says:

    And leave out Holden? I do not understand people’s Torres love fest. From the way some of y’all talk, he’s the damn Mexican-American Pele

  118. Zach says:

    Just to clarify,

    Holden > Torres.
    No matter if Holden plays on the wing (where he should play with Dempsey up top) or if he plays in the middle, he’s a better option than Torres.

  119. RSLFaninKC says:

    Findley making the team actually makes sense because he brings an element that NO one else on the roster can give…blazing speed. In form or not as a goal scorer, you can’t have all of your forwards bring the same skill set, there HAS to be diversity or you are screwed. He’s on the team because no one else they have healthy can run faster than he can. Same reason why Gooch was a no brainer despite his injuries and lack of any playing time for 7 months…because injured or not, he can lay the smack down in the box because of his size that no one else can provide. Diversity and match ups…that’s the key to winning. You have to be able to show different looks or you become too predictable. Example? Past US Men’s basketball teams…most talented team in the world, but still got embarrassed because everyone could jump out of the building, but no one could hit a damn three, while the Europeans took us to school from downtown. Bradley was smart enough to avoid that mistake. Go USA!!!

  120. SBI Troll says:

    I wonder why we haven’t traded Bornstein to Honduras. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. He’s a god down in Honduras.

  121. Midwest Ref says:

    How about a 4-5-1 for England and get a point:

    Howard

    Dolo Gooch/Goodsen Demerit Boca

    Edu Clark

    Donovan Bradley Dempsey

    Altidore

  122. madmax says:

    Eddie Lewis was LB I believe for first Czech goal.

  123. Jank says:

    Putting Ching aside.

    I like this squad. Even though we brought 7 defenders, Edu and Beasley can fill in as defenders admirably. As long as Gooch get a bit more confidence in the air and being a bit more physical. Then I think we’ll be fine.

    Bradley really needs to experiment with Dempsey up front with Jozy and also with Edson/Gomez. Holden has shown he can fill the void left by Dempsey, he may lack that extra talent/vision but he makes up for it tremendously in effort.

    Torres needs to get a look for starting position. He always looks to push play forward. and is a creative passer. I just don’t know if he can get the call with Edu and Clark seemingly in front of him in the pecking order. (This is why I don’t understand why Rogers was rated high by so many people, alot of his passes slowed down play, especially in one instance the USA had, Rogers just sent the pass back and it completely let the Czech defense reset, poor poor judgement. When you get momentum you have to keep applying pressure!!!!!)

    I hope BB comes out with an offensive minded strategy.
    Can’t wait!!

  124. hudson says:

    Like the idea of starting Holden in midfield alongside Bradley. He showed last night he’s a strong two-way player and can provide something closer to the traditional No. 10 the U.S. stilll lacks in organizing the attack. He may not be in position to send in crosses playing centrally but he can still alternate with Donovan on free kicks and corner kicks. But will Bradley even consider it?

  125. madmax says:

    Jason Kreis has the answer on Findley, he doesn’t play him. Bradley will do the same.

  126. JR says:

    I’m thinking we will need one good game out of Bornstein in group play. Algeria’s 3-5-2 is an ideal matchup for his speed. Yellow card accumulation happens and guys like DeMerit and Spector foul a lot.

  127. PetedeLA says:

    Unfortunately, I’m not that impressed with these decisions. Our back 4 is as shaky as it gets. I’m shocked that no one has mentioned how Dolo chose to make inaccurate and risky passes over the top when smart, accurate passes would have done.

    Torres and Gomez were the best players on the night, and for some odd reason Torres has no real chance to start, and Gomez seemed like he may have done so well because he was able to work with a great target man who ain’t even going to SA.

    After watching the Bundesliga season pretty carefully, Clark seemed to be clearly better than Bradley Junior; but there won’t be much time to fiddle with the team too much.

    Clark has really improved from what I saw in his last few games. He may not be a playmaker, but he’s terribly alert. He seems to have completely mastered when to go forward and when to attack. Can’t say the same about the other center mids. Unlike Junior and Edu, he doesn’t have the habit of ball watching while the opposition has their way with us.

    People want Dempsey and Altidore up top, but they are basically the same type of player– lions that pick and choose their moments to attack.

    In Landon we trust– I guess.

  128. Mortimer says:

    You simply can’t start Gooch against England. If you do you are insane.

  129. Ballzwerth Berrodino says:

    link to youtube.com awesome stuff

  130. MidWest Ref says:

    Even under Cappello, England will play as England plays – fast, hard, relentless attack

    The US never copes well against that style (Germany 98)(Poland 02)(Czech’s 06).

    I am afraid that Gooch is not healthy and Goodsen is not good enough. Set a wall with both Edu and Clark in front. Let little Bradly try to play offense with Dempsey and Donovan on the wings, and let Altidore get fouled by Terry and Ferdinand up front on his own

  131. MidWest Ref says:

    I don’t think Holden is strong enough to play against England on the wing. He surely wont last more than 60 minutes – he slowed down substantially in the second half last night

  132. MidWest Ref says:

    Torres just does not strong enough to play against England. Rooney Lampard Gerrard and who ever else plays in midfield will eat up Torres’ sideways Reyna-like passes. If Torres plays, he plays in games 2 and 3 where we need to score and win.

  133. Steve says:

    While the US is still trying to figure out who is on the team, Mexico is playing valuable minutes in many friendlies with the likes of Italy, Holland, etc. That is time well spent. I care not which 23 are selected but which 11 are on the field and even more important after last night’s debacle, which 4 will be on defense. Last night was scary…not looking for it to improve either in the 2 final warm ups either.

  134. Warren says:

    Gooch is far from fine – just look at him.
    He’s lost weight and upper body strength; he’s lost thigh muscle.

    And oh yeah he can’t jump and moves like an old man.

    Aside from that, he did make some nice clearances with his head and his footwork was ok – hanging with AC Milan has helped there apparently.

    But – Gooch is not fine, as the icepack strapped to his knee as soon as he came out reminded us.

  135. Warren says:

    You mean on one occasion

  136. Warren says:

    +100

  137. Warren says:

    DeMerit’s had a below par year, Boca had surgery a few weeks ago, Gooch is a shell of his former self, and Spector whom I’ve always liked almost got West ham relegated all by himself.

    Not to mention the LB who shall not be named.

    But no worries, or backline is just fine???

  138. Warren says:

    No way he goes 90 in Philly, Gooch is not in condition for that. They may cut him back to just a half to save him for the Cup.

  139. scott says:

    all good points but I dont think left back was the only issue. We had a major problem maintaining possession and at times the offense looked tired (hopefully just from the intense camp). Buddle would give solid efforts on some plays in transition and soft efforts on others, leaving Holden to bust his butt to challenge, which he did very well and drew several fouls. I think gooch naturally showed some rust, he seemed out of position at times and late to be where ought to. Pearce was painful to watch, goodson was impressive and dolo really showed his veteran experience by consistently shutting down challenges especially in the air. I think its worth noting that stadium atmosphere was pretty damn good, I got a chill up my spine in the second half when a slow U-S-A chant built up from the corner (not supporters club area) and spread through the whole place, that one got very loud and made me feel confident in our fans.

  140. shao2007 says:

    3 Words:

    Trust Bob Bradley

    After the Confederations Cup and finishing first in qualifying, Big Bob keeps proving he’s the smartest guy in the room.

    But, I do wish Bedoya made the team, kind of like how Theo Walcott went in ’06 just to get some experience.

  141. Brian says:

    I could agree with that.

  142. Brian says:

    Unless you’re talking a 4-5-1, who would you start next to Jozy?

  143. Brian says:

    If he plays we’re screwed. Honestly I think he had such a bad game that when Pearce came into the game he had a legitimate chance to steal Bornstein’s spot. Unfortunatly for him and for us, Pearce was even worse than Bornstein. He choked. We knew it, he knew it. You could see it in his face. When he missed on that silly slide tackle, you could tell he knew he blew his chance to go to South Africa.

    It’s amazing to me that after like 10 years we still haven’t found a capable left back. Bocanegra isn’t a left back, and neither is Spector, but they’re sure as hell better than Bornstein or Pearce. Hopefully Edgar Castillo can get into the picture for 2014, or some young MLSer or youth player.

  144. Brian says:

    I think you owe me some money for using that name

  145. DaveW says:

    When the US had no reputation and before FIFA started trying to protect the players more, bad challenges by the likes of Mastroeni and Hejduk were forgiven because the refs assumed they lacked skill.

    Now that the US are the “Giants of Concacaf”(Aguirre’s criterion) going in late with studs up will get sanctioned.

  146. Adam G says:

    Perhaps I’m way off, but I am not sure Jozy Altidore should be in the starting XI. A forward that doesn’t score goals is not what the US needs, and he also turns the ball over with poor passes frequently.

    I would like to see this XI:

    Howard
    Spector Gooch DeMerit Boca
    Feilhaber Edu Bradley Holden
    Donovan Dempsey

  147. Come on you Yanks says:

    Come on man. We can’t have a real conversation if you leave off the captain.

    So much of where everyone plays depends on Onyewu. If he isn’t match fit, we will really need to get creative.

  148. jayrig5 says:

    You don’t have to pick an 18 for a World Cup game, all 23 are active. It was the same for the Confederation’s Cup last year.

  149. Der_Amerikanische_Kaiser says:

    Having preminitions of France 98 and Germany 2006 all over again. The D scares me. Gooch proved that some white men can, IN FACT, jump, and DeMeritt, although he didn’t play, may need a seeing eye dog.

    I thought the same as many did on Ching – didn’t belong. But after seeing him pairing with his partners and the rest of his mates yesterday, nifty combinations, the chemistry (everything a coach is looking for right? I guess that wasn’t the case in the mind of Bradley. Findley? Are you kidding me?

  150. usftublog says:

    He won’t as long as Bocanegra and DeMerit are healthy and ready to go….Bornstein wasn’t so horrible in the Czech game though compared to Pearce

  151. usftublog says:

    Bradley would never leave Bocanegra off the starting lineup unless he was injured. Also, Spector has never been as comfortable playing left back where as Boca plays out there for his club team.

  152. usftublog says:

    I completely agree with your assessment. Holden has to start, which would push Dempsey up top with Jozy. Then you have two quality striker subs like Gomez and the speedy Buddle. I do prefer Buddle over Findley just because he is the one in better form right now.

  153. usftublog says:

    Yea I completely agree we should try different formations against Turkey. Bradley’s stagnant 4-4-2 isn’t very effective against elite teams. I also agree with a 4-4-1-1, which gives Donovan space to create and run all over the pitch. However, leaving Jozy stranded up top could cause some offensive struggles if the midfield is not doing a good enough job winning the ball.

  154. usftublog says:

    Remember you had Heath Pearce play left back for the 2nd half and Rogers on the left wing, which was a side we were constantly being beaten on and both players didn’t make the world cup roster. Also, the central midfield looked exposed with Kljestan out there, leading to many attacking advantages for the Czechs. Don’t be too worried, unless “Gooch” doesn’t improve against Turkey and Boca gives an injury ridden performance.

  155. usftublog says:

    Bornstein probably won’t start as long as DeMerit and Boca are healthy. Also, as bad as he has looked at times he is really are only serviceable left back at the current time to back-up Boca. I don’t like the idea of Spector at left back because of his poor play there with West Ham.

  156. Brad says:

    PTI on ESPN? Those two know absolutely nada about soccer. They should have Lalas or a different soccer fan come in every day when the WC is on to analyze the day’s matches for them…

  157. Leonardo says:

    GREAT post!

    Holden – def not 100%. he was lagging and his last 3 crosses were all terrible. his stamina is not 100%. i sure hope he recovers quickly.

    i also think torres showed great control of possession in the game – he is confident and in control – and deserves a move up the roster to sub at least

  158. Leonardo says:

    Gomez the Great! he’s electric! and this team def needs a player like that coming off the bench. im so stoked about Gomez!

    look how stoked he is. this is a video id show kids aspiring to fulfill their dreams.
    link to youtube.com

  159. Juan from L.A. says:

    Ives i hope it was a typo what you said and you have Beasley as a left mid not the leftback. I too agree that he is not ready for that. He will get smoked. I totally agree in maybe taking the left wing or left mid but then what do you with Donovan put him on the right and then waht with Dempsey upfront with Altidore? I guess it would work, only for the England match. The other matches we need to control the mid and both Dempsey and Donovan need to be in it or Holden and move Dempsey upfront.

  160. Warren says:

    Yeah aside from ending world #1 Spain’s 35 game winning streak and almost taking out Brazil the US hasn’t been able to do anything playing 4-4-2.

    Unless you count finishing #1 in CONACAF qualifying….

    So yeah makes a lot of sense to throw out the only formation that has worked of late, given the talent, or limitations thereof.

  161. Warren says:

    quite the bold prediction

  162. Warren says:

    yeah no prob we just need to fix the lb and we’re fine

  163. The Imperative Voice says:

    The midfield selections were obvious but his other choices — including who to bring to camp in the first place — leave a little to be desired. Findley was not even the best speedster we gave time this year, Cunningham was (even scored a goal in a friendly, while Findley looked adrift) and he didn’t even make the camp. Plus, in order to put speed on the roster, he left off the only target man in camp. That’s like picking Oduro over Ching. Altidore, Buddle, Gomez, and Findley are all pretty feckless target players. Altidore is often unable to simply trap a ball. I basically worry he got too cute and left basic holding play that any team needs off the roster. It doesn’t matter if the forwards can run if we prove, like at the last World Cup, to have difficulties securing the ball up top and even advancing it out of our own end. I basically fear it’ll be three games of longballs to no one and if we advance it will be at the expense of the teams other than England, not because we’ve put together a well-oiled machine.

    Plus, I don’t understand the fullback players he brought into camp (some of the problem starts with who he called up in the first place….too many center backs like Marshall and not enough wings). Why, if he’s so experimental at forward, willing to drop Ching for unproven forwards, did he call up the same set of backline messups who’ve been leaking goals all year, including two obviously useless left backs (Bornstein and Pearce), who proved it yet again the other night against the Czechs? When Clarence Goodson is your rock you have a problem. Even more than the forwards, I fear his inability to get a decent backline cobbled together over 4 years may seal our fate (his supposed “ace” in the hole of pushing Edu back is clearly a work in progress I’d not depend on this year, after the other night). If you looked at most of the friendlies and qualifiers going back a ways, we’ve given up a lot of goals and not won a lot recently. I can’t believe he was so passive and status quo about this obvious failing.

  164. The Imperative Voice says:

    Admirably? You realize Edu got turned for a goal that easy by the Czechs?

  165. The Imperative Voice says:

    He completely left holdup play off the roster to add his fast forward. Bluntly, I felt like Buddle offered most of what Findley does, on a hot streak, with more finesse. Findley’s not shown he has the touch at the international level to even be useful.

  166. A Guest says:

    Given our stack of injured back-line players… I kind of agree with this lineup.

  167. NC Jeff says:

    Part of the number of US starters in ’06 was due to red card suspensions. Hopefully, we can avoid Larrionda and red cards in ’10.

  168. war says:

    if Boca is fit, he plays LB. Goodson is good cover for Gooch(esp for dealing with Crouch)so we can put Goodson in with Demerit instead of moving Boca(making JB get some time). I’d take Cherundolo at LB if Boca isn’t fit and keep spector at RB.

    With Findley, he’s going to be a sub, but Gomez has the history of being THE super-sub. He’s the magician. Can’t go wrong with Herculez on your team. Maybe, but better than Findley.

    I also just rewatched the USA-Italy game and BB used 3-3-3.

    Any chance we’d see

    Landon–Jozy–Dempsey

    Beasley–Bradley–Holden

    Boca-Gooch-Cherundolo

    —Howard…..?

    It looks good from the front until you get to the D…

  169. war says:

    that’s not my preferred one. We have too slow of a D to only play three. It could be a 3-5-1, but Jozy doesn’t do well alone, so LD and Decue would go up to support. We all kind of know there are only 2 line ups. It just depends on whether Deuce is up top or not. Then Holden would come in/Beasley. The D is confed cup sans JB. Even ives is saying he wont get time which i believe he thought JB would get.

  170. Jonathan S. says:

    must be a Mexico fan

  171. john godfrey says:

    A lot of people are saying that Findley is the 23rd guy on the roster and he won’t get a sniff of the field in South Africa, but I’m not sure that’s true. The fact that he wrapped up a spot on the team before the Czech game suggests he might be the 11th guy on the roster — a starter. If he starts this Saturday, I’m guessing that’s BB’s plan for June 12th too.

  172. beachbum says:

    wow, am I bored with this commentary…what should have been done? you say Cunningham instead of Findley, for example? whoa Nellie

    also, does not appear you watched Jozy play at Hull this season, or you’d have a different perspective on the current state of his game.

    and at left back, exactly who should it be? we all know it’s a weakness…duh.

  173. Chris says:

    Golly.

  174. Lost in Space says:

    I’ve often thought that a 3-5-2 might be someting to explore with the USMNT. However, the US is more defensive/counter attacking with its stratagies. So if we were to use 3-5-2, I believe it’d be more along a 3-2-3-2 formation like this….

    ————Howard———-

    —Spector—DeMerit—Boca—-

    ———-Edu—–Clark——–

    -Holden—-Bradley—-Donovan-

    ——–Jozy—–Dempsey—-

    Requires a stay at Home approach to the defense with Edu & Clark supporting both an attack and defense.

  175. D says:

    LD can take the set pieces. With our mids faced off against the likes of Lampard, Gerrard, Barry, or whoever else they throw in the middle, we’re gonna need better coverage than Holden (and I’m not a fan of BB’s 2 DMid system, but it’s a must for game 1).

    I would also love to see some speed at forward to take advantage of their two slow CBs who have been poor at the end of the season. But, I don’t see it being a possibility unless it’s LD up top. Dempsey doesn’t track back on the wings…

  176. The Imperative Voice says:

    Why would you take Findley over Cunningham when Cunningham has the superior professional goalscoring plus at least some history of NT scoring? We don’t have the slightest clue if Findley is up to the task, and he didn’t show me anything when he played.

    Plus, I understand the “speed” argument but no one seems to be understanding that it’s coming at the expense of a holding forward. We’ve traded away any holding ability for speed. Anyone who’s seen Dom Oduro can tell you speed alone does not a forward make.

    I’ve seen Jozy play and all due respect but he’s a bit of a donkey. If that’s who you are depending on running off of it may not work. You really want to depend on Jozy to set up Landon et al?

    And my point re left back was that not only did Bradley choose Bornstein and consider Pearce — both of whom have played bad for the Nats a lot — he didn’t give them any competition in the camp. Having seen left back stink it up, why call in the same set of people to the camp from which you pick the 23? It’s no wonder the defense looks hopeless. There has been no real competition or accountability for performance. Which is odd because Bradley at the same time was very flip and risky with his forwards…..Gomez, Buddle, Findley? If you’d mentioned them in January people would have thought you were nuts…..so why didn’t you call in a left back to push or replace the awful ones? It’s kind of like Arena’s dithering at the same spot only to try Eddie Lewis at Germany. With 4 years I don’t understand how you have a position not figured out, especially when you give Bornstein 9 lives.

  177. beachbum says:

    we don’t have a deep talent pool at left back yet…get used to it. and as usual with this line of griping, you don’t mention a player that should have been tried there at left back instead.

    and I am not defending the Findley choice, would have picked Brian myself, just find the Cunningham idea laughable

    your analysis of Jozy reveals you did not watch his season develop at Hull, and your assessment ability needs a serious upgrade in information…you called him a donkey. and i can’t wait to see him link with Landon, Clint and the rest!

    Hee Haw!

  178. Daryl says:

    Bringing Frankie Hedjuk would have been a good decision.

  179. JuniorDosSantos says:

    that lineup would be great except you gotta take out beasley from LB and replace with Spector.

    OH HOW I WISH WE PLAYED A 4-5-1, donavon and dempsey would score so many goals. Maybe switch Edu and bradley or put torres in for Edu.

  180. Bell says:

    So you are saying BB is a liar?

  181. Life of says:

    “Gomez, the Magic Man, because he’s our best forward option not named Jozy or Dempsey. Plus everyone knows he’ll work his tail off.”

    What makes you think any one of these players won’t work their tail off? You think it was easy getting into the final 23? You Bob’s boys like Sacha and Ching can take it easy?

    Oh. that’s right their not here!

  182. VictoriaTX says:

    I think your basic assumption is a crock.

    The US might not qualify for 2014.

    Findley may not be around for 2014.

    Bradley may not be around for 2014.

    The World Cup is a once in a lifetime thing. Many fantastic players have never played in one ( George Best, Ryan Giggs) and if you think Bradley or any of these guys is thinking about 2014 you’re smoking or consuming a lot of probably illegal substances( unless you have a medical waiver).

  183. RamiroCorrales says:

    I’d put him on the right so he can cut in and shoot( see Robben, Champions Cup final)

  184. bf says:

    yes… crazy… Findley choked against Holland. He cannot take on players, but then maybe Bob sees something the rest of us haven’t.

  185. RevsFan says:

    Tracking back and….?