Americans Abroad: A Look Ahead

Alejandro Bedoya Rangers (Reuters)

By FRANCO PANIZO

Having been beaten by Kilmarnock in shocking fashion last week, Carlos Bocanegra, Maurice Edu and Alejandro Bedoya enter their match against Dunfermline Athletic with one thing in mind: Winning.

Rangers is still four points clear of Celtic for first place in the Scottish Premier League, but the Blues need to bounce back from last weekend's defeat. Edu is likely to start the match against 10th-place Dunfermline, while Bocanegra could return to the lineup should he be fully recovered from the hamstring injury that forced him to miss last weekend's game. Whether Bedoya begins the game on the bench or not is less certain, but he is likely to see the field as he continues to search for his first goal in Scotland.

Michael Parkhurst and FC Nordsjaelland could also use a win, as they aim to close the four-point gap between themselves and first-place FC Copenhagen. Nordsjaelland faces third-place FC Midtjylland on Sunday, and Parkhurst will need to continue his solid play for the defense that has allowed the fewest goals in Denmark if they are to head into the long winter break with a victory.

On the opposite end of the table in Denmark, Clarence Goodson and Brondby IF will attempt to further distancing themselves from the relegation zone when they take on fellow relegation battlers Brad Rusin and HB Koge. A win could put Goodson and Brondby eight points clear of the drop zone.

Here is who the Americans Abroad square off against this weekend:

FRIDAY

Conor Doyle and Derby County play Crystal Palace.

David Yelldell and Bayer Leverkusen play Fabian Johnson, Danny Williams and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.

Edson Buddle and FC Ingolstadt 04 play Eintracht Braunschweig.

Matt Taylor and SC Paderborn 07 play St Pauli.

SATURDAY

Zak Whitbread and Norwich City play Manchester City. (Whitbread is out injured.)

Brad Friedel and Tottenham Hotspur play Stuart Holden and Bolton Wanderers. (Holden is out injured.)

Brad Guzan, Eric Lichaj and Aston Villa play Manchester United. (Lichaj is out injured.)

Robbie Findley and Nottingham Forest play Brighton.

Daniel Potts and West Ham United play Burnley.

Mike Grella and Brentford play Wrexham.

Frank Simek and Carlisle United play Charleston Athletic. (Simek is out injured.)

Anton Peterlin and Walsall play Dagenham & Redbridge.

Maurice Edu, Alejandro Bedoya, Carlos Bocanegra and Rangers play Dunfermline Athletic.

Dominic Cervi and Greenock Morton play Falkirk.

Terrence Boyd and Borussia Dortmund play Borussia Moenchengladbach.

Alfredo Morales and Hertha Berlin play Kaiserslautern.

Steve Cherundolo and Hannover 96 play SC Freiburg.

Ricardo Clark and Eintracht Frankfurt play Luis Robles and Karlsruher SC.

Quentin Westberg and Evian Thonon Gaillard play Valenciennes.

Chris Rolfe and Aalborg BK play Silkeborg IF.

Diego Restrepo and America de Cali play Once Caldas.

SUNDAY

Tim Howard, Marcus Hahnemann and Everton play Stoke City.

Jonathan Spector and Birmingham City play Cardiff City.

Michael Bradley and Chievo Verona play Atalanta.

Timmy Chandler and FC Nurnberg play Hamburg SV.

Jermaine Jones and Schalke 04 play FC Augsburg.

Bobby Wood and TSV 1860 Munich play Alemannia Aachen. (Wood is out injured.)

Jozy Altidore and AZ Alkmaar play Heerenveen.

Sacha Kljestan and RSC Anderlecht play OH Leuven.

Michael Parkhurst and FC Nordsjaelland play FC Midtjylland.

Clarence Goodson and Brondby IF play Brad Rusin and HB Koge.

Jonathan Bornstein and Tigres UANL play Queretaro in the second leg of the semifinals of the Mexico Apertura Liguilla.

MONDAY

Clint Dempsey and Fulham play Liverpool.

Conor O'Brien and SonderjyskE play Odense BK.

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Which matches are you most looking forward to? Think Rangers will get back to winning ways? How do you see Parkhurst and Nordsjaelland faring? Will Brondby and Goodson get the three points? 

Share your thoughts below.

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20 Responses to Americans Abroad: A Look Ahead

  1. adub says:

    who is micheal parkhurst? why doesnt he ever get mentioned for callups?

  2. SD says:

    he played in the 2007 gold cup…he’s too small and too slow to be an international defender…you must be new to soccer to have not heard how some ppl on this site clamor for him…..

  3. kalyn says:

    is there any particular reason buddle’s games are always on friday?

  4. fischy says:

    Yes.

    Particularly, that’s when Germany plays a lot of games. I would guess it’s about TV rights — easier to sell if they’re not competing against EPL and Serie A.

  5. pd says:

    OK I have been pretty supportive of the whole Kyle Beckerman as a starting NATster, but I wonder, now that J. Spector is getting time in that role, his natural position mind you (remember that he was converted to fullback), can’t we give that a try? As far as I know he’s never been given a look there. I’m not saying he’ll eclipse Jermaine Jones or anything like that but I’d be curious. He seems to be a utility player for country but has been very successful for clubs… Don’t quite get it.

  6. Dinho says:

    i wouldn’t mind seeing that. just to try.

  7. OC says:

    Lol what’s that point of taking that shot at adub? Are you familiar with every single player that a few ppl on this website talk about?

    I have never once, in my 2+ years of reading this blog (hey look, I must be new to this blog), seen somebody ‘clamor’ over Parkhurst. I’ve seen clamor over about 70 worthless players, and I’ve probably been guilty of it, but not Parkhurst.

    So why throw that in? I’m really curious.

  8. NE Matt says:

    +1 give the kid a go. he also has the age advantage (25) on beckerman (29) and jones (30). could be a bit of a future in that role for us with the nats

  9. Jamie says:

    At the very least a future as a backup at that position, as opposed to Beckerman and Jones who won’t be in the setup as long from here on out as Spector potentially could be.

  10. Lost in Space says:

    The issue with playing Spector in central midfield for the national team is simply the depth we have at that position. We have established players like Jones, Bradley, Holden, Edu, Beckerman (I personally don’t care for him but the coaches do); then young developing players like Torres, Williams, and Johnson who all have great upside and all have played cental midfield. That with our lack of depth & experiance on the defensive line is the only reason he’s even getting called into camp any more.

  11. Dennis says:

    pretty much right. Spector also does have the potential to play midfield should a bad spell of injury beset the nats close to game time before others could be called in.

  12. GW says:

    Don’t underestimate the value of versatility.

    Spector has shown he can be versatile at a high level.

    Like all national teams the USMNT is about tournaments. When you are limited to 23 man rosters and faced with playing potentially 6 or 7 games over the course of a month, that is physically brutal.

    A guy like Spector can be very valuable in such circumstances.

  13. Spector has shown that he can compete at a high level. He can play a few different positions and can really cross a ball from the right as good as anyone in the pool. He should be on the team, regardless of who else is around. He was stellar at the last Confederations cup; at least two assists that I can remember Dempsey knocking in.

  14. Isaac says:

    I’d say Spector might do well as either a holding midfielder where he can show his great distribution skills or as a right midfielder where he can show his crossing. He could possibly play a “carrilero”, a player who shuttles from central midfield to right midfield in attack. Zonal Marking did a piece on that:

    link to zonalmarking.net

    link to zonalmarking.net

  15. chaslymunroe says:

    Hey, SD can’t help it. He/she is simply better than most. It is not their fault 0_0

  16. Ryan says:

    Has anybody managed to watch Bedoya play for Rangers? I’m rather shocked he seems to have had so little impact thus far. He was a player I had very high hopes for. He has a knack for taking up good positions in the attiacking third much like Deuce.

  17. Chris says:

    Love Spector, just needs to play any where other than left back to show his worth

  18. kev says:

    Sure hope Dempsey is healthy to face Liverpool on Monday

  19. kev says:

    Spector has seen ALOT in the 8years that he’s been a professional

  20. GW says:

    “I’m rather shocked he seems to have had so little impact thus far.”

    You shouldn’t be. Bedoya moved in mid season and from what I have read he has not been completely healthy.

    US fans always seem to think that success with one team immediately and automatically translates to another team. It doesn’t. Better players than Bedoya have failed to settle at new clubs.Try to be more patient.