USA U23s cruise to 2-0 win over Mexico

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Photo by Rick Yeatts/ISIphotos.com


By FRANCO PANIZO

With both the U.S. men's national team and U.S. women's national team claimed shutout wins, U.S. Soccer just needed a victory from Caleb Porter's Under-23 side to enjoy a dream leap year day.

Porter's team got that win and it did so in convincing fashion against a formidable foe.

The U.S. U-23 side cruised to a 2-0 win over rival Mexico's U-23 team at FC Dallas Stadium in Frisco, Texas on Wednesday night, capping off a marquee day for U.S. Soccer and its fans.

The goals came a minute apart in the first half. Juan Agudelo knocked in a corner kick from Mix Diskerud in the 35th minute, and Diskerud followed that up with a goal of his own when he deflected a Freddy Adu shot from range that made its way into the back of the net.

The game wrapped up the U.S. team's February camp, the last one before Olympic qualifying takes place in March. The United States went 3-0 during its friendlies during this camp, ousting FC Dallas, 2-1, before topping NASL club San Antonio Scorpions, 3-0. 

That string of positve outings was completed with a thorough triumph over Mexico's U-23 team. Playing in a 4-3-3 formation, the Americans outpossessed their southern foes from the opening whistle. Quick combination passes from the likes of Agudelo, Diskerud, Joe Gyau and Freddy Adu helped paved the way for the result.

The U.S. team was also pretty sound defensively, with Mexico really only threatening on shots from range. Led by captain Ike Opara, the Americans' defense outmuscled and outplayed an El Tri attack that included Mexican-American left back Miguel Angel Ponce and the highly-touted Marco Fabian.

Mexico picked things up late in the game, as Porter opted to make a flurry of substitutions. The Americans still managed to record the cleansheet, with Bill Hamid serving as the goalkeeper in the first half and Sean Johnson in the second.

With the Mexicans chasing for much of the game, the United States frustrated its opponent by keeping possession for large stretches, so much so that American fans at the stadium could be heard chanting "ole" on certain passing sequences.

The ability to keep possession eventually helped the Americans find their breakthrough. Ten minutes before halftime Diskerud served a corner kick from the left that Agudelo powered home past goalkeeper Liborio Sanchez, silencing the pro-Mexico crowd in attendance. 

Diskerud then got a goal of his own when he slightly redirected Adu's shot from 25 yards out, resulting in fans chanting "dos a cero".

Porter now has tough decisions to make as he has to pick a 20-man squad for the start of Olympic qualifying on March 22 in Nashville, Tennessee.The U.S. team will play in Group A against Cuba, Canada and El Salvador.

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126 Responses to USA U23s cruise to 2-0 win over Mexico

  1. James says:

    Fantastic showing, I am really optimistic about this young crop of talent.
    Also I hope this hammers another nail in college soccers coffin.

  2. El Tri hater says:

    Complete domination of Mexico’s U-23′s by Porters squad. Loved hearing the American fans chanting dos a cero and ole while dominating possession.

  3. Tab says:

    They looked more impressive than any US side I have seen for the first 60min.

    Yes they are u23′s. But they played exciting, possession soccer. It was almost stunning to see. Ball on ground. Crisp. Doninant. And when possession was lost — high pressing to win it back.

    It was great to win in Italy. But this was in some ways much more thrilling.

  4. jonk says:

    Indeed a great showing. But I don’t think you realize that your 2nd sentence doesn’t really belong in this discussion.

  5. Clayton says:

    Great win. I sat in row 11 – always good to quiet a pro-Mexico crowd.

    Lots of talent on this youth team. Can’t wait for Olympic qualifying.

  6. Taylor says:

    yea, except the college coach who has obviously nailed it into these players heads the system he wants to run, which is a very effective system.

    so much for players in European academies not buying into a college system

  7. Steve says:

    Nice Result..Saw the last 15 mins really like morales and his flat top..anyone know where I can catch the highlights??

  8. Clover362 says:

    Just got back from the stadium. Of all the players I saw I’d say gyu, adu, mix, cora (#10) and hamid are the ones that have a chance of making the senior squad by 2014.

  9. jonk says:

    Exactly. This team’s performance (led by a college coach and a backline of college players) is not a referendum on college soccer.

  10. jonk says:

    ussoccer will have them when they’ve got ‘em assembled and I’m sure Ives will post them then as well.

  11. jonk says:

    Heh, not to poke fun at your bold prediction, but Gyau is the only one in your list that hasn’t already been called in with the full team. (I’ll count Corona since Bob was gonna call him in before he was fired)

  12. Dimidri says:

    Seriously. All of your ‘college soccer is bad’ arguments are solved by this-if you’re good enough and know you’re good enough so that college soccer would stunt your development, don’t do it. Go pro. God bless you. For every player who ends up playing in college and would have been better had he not gone, there are two players who either were late bloomers and never would have made it or wouldn’t have taken the risk that soccer doesn’t pan out and went with just the education. The status quo is the system you advocate-players can make the conscious decision not to play college soccer, but those who do aren’t being jedi mind-tricked into doing it, that’s woefully paternalistic, they see it as their best option.

  13. CJ says:

    It seems wrong to award the 2nd goal to Mix & not Adu. I didn’t see the deflection. Was it on frame before the ricochet?

  14. rico says:

    I am curious to know why folks think that Academies and college soccer are mutually exclusive. I am very happy to see the growth of youth academies in this country, but also think the two compliment each other. As has been said, people fall through the cracks, develop at different rates. The more avenues, the more players in competitive soccer, the better. The same goes for opportunities for coaches! It’s also good that players on the fringe have access to higher education, into MLS. More soccer is better.

    Nice win, big ups to Porter and our boys.

  15. Judging Amy says:

    Exactly. College athletics produces some of the best, most freakish, finely tuned athletes in the world (or at least properly grooms them) in basketball and football.

    Granted soccer is a different animal but as you’ve pointed out, college ball can grow alongside an academy system.

    College soccer only helps. It definitely isn’t the problem.

  16. Steve says:

    Hurry up Ives..im need something to wank it too tonight!!!

  17. KJ says:

    Any link to highlights?

  18. Never seen Gyau before.

    Holy shnykees! Boy can ball. Confident on the ball and just BLOWS past defenders.

    Can’t WAIT to see him again.

  19. Fantastic showing all around by US Soccer. The US Women are just owning at the moment, and Morgan just can’t stop scoring. The senior men’s team finally beat Italy, in Italy. Great game from Bradley, good showing for Johnson at left back, Spector came in and did well. Altidore looked good. Overall, good game. And to top that all off with the Sub-23′s beating Mexico, dos a cero! Great day to be a US fan. That young team looks solid. Glad to see Opara getting the captain’s arm band. Gyau is just nasty, can’t wait for him to start playing in Germany. Adu showed well, Mixx…showed he doesn’t shy away from tackles, and I can’t pick between Sean Johnson and Bill Hamid as the starter for that team.

  20. primoone says:

    Gyau is a beast…i never want to see brek start above him on the left.

  21. Mark says:

    Who are mix and cora???

  22. Yoreau Snaub says:

    Between Agudelo, Bradley, Howard and Lloyd, What a day for New Jersey! (Even the kit was a New Jersey!)

  23. Brad says:

    Did anyone else notice Mexico swarming Gyau with 3 players whenever he got the ball? He puts fear into the hearts of defenders…

  24. Goalscorer24 says:

    The first 20 minutes of the 2nd half we really dominated. I wish we would have taken more shots during that stretch, we had some open ones. we could have gotten that 3rd goal. But overall it was nice to see Mexico go down.

  25. EARL says:

    More results like this and Porter might just be in charge of the senior squad come 2018.

  26. I hate Mexican soccer says:

    God I love beating Mexico!

  27. hush says:

    I was at the game tonight. Great win! Gyau is just plain nasty! Adu my boy never disappoints. And Mix was on full boost today. Hamid and Sean were strong… shoot, it was just fun screaming Gooooalll twice at the MExican fans. Great day yesterday for U.S soccer.

    Viva el futbol.

  28. cajun says:

    Adu is 30 years old!

  29. Jacob ATL says:

    Favorite play of the last 30 minutes (all I saw): Ike Opara in a 1v1 defensive situation. He did something all American athletes are taught that I’ve never seen an international soccer player do… He broke down in an athletic stance. He got his feet wide, hips down, back flexed. All I’ve ever seen the international players do is stand straight up and put their hands behind their back. Sure, you won’t get called for a handball, but you also can’t react to anything the player with the ball does very well. In this case, Opara stood him up, the Mexican player tried to go each way, couldn’t, and soon lost possession. I’d LOVE to see more of this.

  30. USA_A_OK says:

    It is still early but the term “Golden Generation” comes to mind. And to break onto the scene against Mexico only seems fitting.

  31. alex says:

    usa-mexico has become one of the best rivalries in american sports.

    nice to see a result like this after mexico (deservedly) pulled back in front of us in last gold cup and world cup qualifying.

    hopefully possession soon becomes a mainstay in our game, allowing us to take more shots at the big boys.

  32. Felix says:

    The most impressive thing about this performance was how much they dominated Mexico, in possession and chances. It was only later in the game once Adu and Agudelo came off and the US lost its ability to hold up the ball that Mexico became more dangerous.

  33. M says:

    Thought our back 4 really impacted the game. They controlled the pace, possession and were too much for Mexico. Was taken by surprise by Opara and Sardoki sp? Opara was like a man playing against boys and Sardoki has blistering pace.

    Would love to see a Gyau, Gatt and Sardoki race

  34. Henry says:

    Great win and great style of play. Got to ask a question, was that Mexico’s first team for the u23′s? If so, they are in a lot of trouble at that level. The US played well but Mexico was really bad.

  35. Freegle says:

    The problem with the college system is not the players or the coaches. There are undoubtedly talented examples of both. The problem is the schedule and the restrictions the NCAA puts on players and coaches. The system is flawed, not the people

  36. Zac says:

    Amen.

  37. THomas says:

    Outstanding point. That’s exactly it. They have to play by stricter ‘rules’ just because the High and Mighty NCAA says so. Then again sounds a bit like FIFA to me.

  38. Like says:

    Hands down the most impressive performance by a US side in years! FOr goodness sake they dominated possession against Mexico! I say let’s call this the golden generation and watch it flourish, haha! Gyau, Adu, Agudelo,Mix and Corona should be on the senior side. There has to be a place for attack-oriented midfielders instead of Jones, Edu and Beckerman. Slot Bradley as the lone defensive midfielder and let these guys run circles around the opponent with skill and possession!

  39. elgringorico says:

    lol careful man

  40. predicto says:

    I loved the style – it must be Porter. Hard passes on the ground moving forward, control possession, pressing defense high. That’s exactly what he said they would do! I want the USMNT to play like this.

  41. Porter and Kreis are already better suited than the overhyped JK. For all of his bluster, JK won a game against Italy by playing the Bob Bradley way.

  42. Uh, the U.S. won the hex in the last round of CONCACAF qualifying and advanced just as far as Mexico in the World Cup.

  43. dan says:

    fyi… caleb porter is a college coach.

  44. If you’ve ever watched Akron play you’d know that this is classic Caleb Porter style. Anyone who has watched him coach knows that he is the best coach in the United States right now. And he’s not even 40 years old.

  45. Chef says:

    Yes it was on frame and yes it should be Adu’s goal. However, Mix did play very well with Corona in the middle.

  46. GoZips says:

    As an Akron student and fan, I can say that no one in Akron was surprised at the style they played last night. This is exactly what Porter is all about. Sexy football at it’s finest!!

  47. chris says:

    Not a good day for mexican fans. Their u-20 team tied UCLA and UCLA looked the better team

  48. Jason says:

    What a fantastic day for US soccer all around!

  49. Ryan says:

    To be fair i think that these young players are better suited for JK and Porter’s style of play. They are more confident on the ball and have beter possession than a lot of full NT players. Like Danny Williams for example, played terrible on the wing yesterday becuase that is not his position. I would be suprised if after the Olympics some of these players arent with the NT.

  50. pancholama says:

    Mixx Diskerud, ex of Staabek, now playing in the Belgian Juliper League. Norwegian-American born in Oslo. Very gifted, talented midfielder, box-to-box – strong defender, good dribbler, good field vision, excellent playmaker.

    Joe Corona – Mexican-American who plays for Tijuana, a team recently ascended to the Mexican Primera Division in part due to his excellent play and goal scoring. Also a solid central or wing mid-field player. Both have great promise. Diskerud has already earned a cap or two with the full men’s nat team.

  51. pancholama says:

    New Jersey soccer rules by satellite, baby!
    Yeeee-ahhhhh!

  52. ACS says:

    In other good news for the U23′s, Wooten has been called into the first team for FC Kaiserslautern could be into the 18 for the match against Wolfsburg this weekend.

    link to rheinpfalz.de

  53. Ryan says:

    I thought it was awesome that 75 percent of the back line was playing for Akron and winning a national title just a year ago under Porter, and all of the back line played college soccer so maybe people will stop saying that college soccer is useless. Opara and Kitchen dominated in central defense. This team looked really impressive even without players such as Chandler, Boyd, Gatt and Shea. I would say that Shea only provides more depth behind Gyau, becuase Duka didnt play well on the wing in my opinion. I am curious to see what is done with Boyd and Juan. This team is going to be deep, and you throw in Gatt and Chandler now you have more problems of who to start because Adu played well on the wing last night. If Gatt starts do you move Adu central. Who do you sit Mix? Corona? They both played very good last night. Good luck choosing a starting 11 Porter, but i guess depth is a luxery you want to have. Unlike the NT, with all the injuries they were not deep at all against Italy.

  54. Ryan says:

    They need all the goal scoring help they can get. Hope he makes the 18 and gets a cameo, and continues to impress to become a starter.

  55. Luke says:

    Ok Bob Bradley poster boy! Seriously! Did you watch the same game everyone else did? For the first 70 minutes ball possession was about 50-50. You name me one game that wasn’t against a Concacaf minnow where we were on par or surpassed the opponent in ball possession, especially a strong European side in Europe! The goal we scored we strung at least 10 passes, going right, back to central D and swinging left before a cross to Altidore and his layoff to Dempsey for the goal. Under bunker Bob, we would have sat back on D and looked for counters, like the Brazil game in the Confederations Cup final. Possession would have been 70-30 Italy. JK’s system of possession and passing is finally beginning to take effect.

  56. SwerveZ says:

    I like the comparison of NCAA to FIFA.

  57. BamaMan says:

    This was not a referendum on college soccer by either side. What I’d like to see is an approach more like the MLB approach – replace the MLS Superdraft with an 18-and-up draft, but give kids the option to go to college even if they are drafted. But let the superstars who can contribute to MLS from an early age do so. There is no reason that a strong club development system can’t coexist with college. It does in baseball very well.

  58. Chef says:

    Everyone and I do mean everyone played very well. For me the stand outs from back to front were. Sean Johnson only b/c he was tested more. Ike Opara was the man of the match fantastic game from him. Tough between Mix and Corona but Mix had a nice deflection and an assist. Very surprised by the defensive effort both put in. They are very good in possession as well. The starting front 3 were simply better than anyone on Mexico. Gyau is incredibly technical and unreal fast, you would be hard pressed to find anyone his age with the tools he has. Adu was 2 steps ahead of everyone tactically. Agudelo was a monster up front. He held off defenders and was always dangerous. You could see a significant drop in talent when those 3 were subbed. Wasn’t really impressed with Teal, Dilly, and Taylor.

  59. ACS says:

    Could it loook something like this during the Olympics this is assuming Gatt doesn’t get released because of the CL qualifying matches….

    Gyau….Altidore….Shea
    …….Adu…..
    …………Mix…..
    ……..Williams………
    Chandler….CB…..CB…..Morales…backline is the only one I am not for certain on, although Chandler will be somewhere in it.

  60. ACS says:

    Although Altidore might be in the same boat as Gatt if they finish 2nd in the Eredivisie.

  61. Ryan says:

    Not the full first team. I dont know a lot about the Mexican youth team but both of the dos santos brothers were with the Mexican NT. Besides that i dont know anything else.

  62. Charlie G says:

    Great showing, inspired soccer and a great mix of team play, and skill in possession. Love Gyau ! His skill earns space on the ball – great to have players that can break down a defense 1 v 1. Lots of smart, confident play.

  63. Clover362 says:

    Hamid wasn’t tested as often but I thought he looked stronger (didn’t give up the loose rebounds Johnson did). They both have bright futures.

  64. PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

    Nice summary pancho…:)

    One more note on Corona, he was voted the ‘rookie of the year’ in the Mexican Apertura for last year. I don’t think that has ever happened to an American player.

    I wrote it elsewhere, but will add here. Porter is going to need help at outside back. Chandler perhaps at the left full back in place of Valentin will solve a lot of problems, though I wasn’t convinced by Sarkodie at the RB either.

    Kitchen was solid all night and the front 7 were really, really good.

  65. Clover362 says:

    That and gyau is a bit slow in passing the ball. The kid has a lot of talent and some freaky athleticism but he needs to work on undstanding the game. When he get’s to higher levels he won’t be able to blow by everyone and will need to learn to pass the ball quickly.

  66. lprevoltion says:

    meh

  67. Vic says:

    I’ve been watching the USA teams for 18 years. I’ve been complaining like a broken record that we need more skilled players versus athletic players. When I saw the line-up, I posted on these boards that this may be the first time we would have possession equal to Mexico. We can continue to play at all levels like we did last night, its just a matter of the right selection.

  68. away goals says:

    Umm… if bob bradley had beaten italy in italy nobody would complain about his tactics. You do what you need to on the road to a european power.

    Now if we employ the same tactics against jamaica, then you can start making that comparison.

  69. PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

    Come on Luke, face it. Klinsmann found out why Bradley played a double D-mid offense and it worked. Nothing to be ashamed of.
    He’s been looking for the U.S. Style and found out that Bradley had already defined it.

    PS We did NOT play bunker ball against Brazil…had we…we probably woulda won.

  70. The Imperative Voice says:

    Clint Dempsey of Furman (briefly) had the goal against Italy last night. Also contributing were Dolo (Portland), Goodson (Maryland), Boca (UCLA), Edu (Maryland), Buddle (1 year JuCo), and Kljestan (Seton Hall).

    Last year’s MLS Best XI included Keller (Portland), Dunivant (Stanford), Gonzo (Maryland), Davis (SLU), and Wondo (Chico State).

    Don’t get me wrong, the percentage of these guys who were 4-year college players has eroded massively, and there is a sea-change of sorts moving towards either a short stint in college or straight to the pros — and the “German” phenomenon also impacts the value of American collegians internationally — but particularly with our mediocre scouting and Bradenton being an imperfect vehicle, and the pros having less than full development apparati, I think there is plenty of room for college soccer as a parallel track. When the MLS teams have all the good players in their academies and the room and money to put them in their pro rosters when they turn 18, I’ll buy it. Until then it’s parallel tracks.

  71. Clover362 says:

    Of course the USA didn’t have their full u-23 team eaitner! I,agine this team with Shea, chandler, Williams, Boyd, Johnson, altidore, aboumousson, and Gil. I can’t even imagine what altidore would have done to mexico’s back line considering how superior agudelo looked strength wise.

  72. Clover362 says:

    Um no, the back line had some really bad turnovers that almost lead to goals, Johnson and hamid bailed the, out a few times. Eh played ok but I would be worried.

  73. Danny says:

    Preach Brother!

  74. beachbum says:

    excellent post, right on target. thanks

  75. The Imperative Voice says:

    It’s complicated. As a former NCAAer one cannot understate the combined demands of education and soccer at a quality school if there is no “jock track.” If you are not expecting a professional future, the rules get you into your season and then done, with time to be ready for finals at the end.

    That being said, football and basketball seasons have steadily expanded, to where the bowls now go well into January, for instance. But soccer is played outdoors across the country and one issue being overlooked is that one of the parallel drivers of the MLS “calendar year” schedule is evading the North American winter. As it is the NCAA final four is often played somewhere frostbitten. And if you move the schedule back into the summer a minimum of students are on campus to see anything.

    Now if we wanted to say something intelligent, it would be something like that we could loosen the reins on the spring seasons. When I played it was a several week period but they only allowed like 5 competitions. That could be expanded.

    Except, let’s be real, PDL and the U-19 nationals also step into the spring somewhat. It’s not like there’s nothing else in place. My comment would be that PDL needs to be more thorough and better scouted, my impression is for the more unknown players it’s random what collegians get into that and which do not. PDL could be less about college connections, who knows who.

  76. beachbum says:

    True. And @ the WC did so by overcoming 2 honest goals disallowed; Mexico had one dishonest goal allowed against them vs. Argentina and promprly cracked in half

    some just have to revise history so it fits into their ideas

  77. marco says:

    I hope Klinsmann hires Porter as his assistant after the Olympics. I definitely see him as the next Joachim Löw.

  78. Angel of LA says:

    Yes I ask the same question too, was that the Mexico’s first team U23 but then again here the other side of that question was that the USA’s first team for the U23. Just Imagine with Josh, williams, Chandler, Torres, Shea and more.

  79. MTs says:

    you sound like an idiot

  80. Judging Amy says:

    Well said.

    “When the MLS teams have all the good players in their academies and the room and money to put them in their pro rosters when they turn 18, I’ll buy it.”

    I don’t know if that ever happens though considering the size of the country.

  81. g-dub says:

    I haven’t seen a lot of Porter’s teams so it was fascinating to see this style. It’s like 100% pressure, full throttle go forward all the time. There was crisp passing and linkup play, but amidst a backdrop of relentless pressure that gave the game a bit of a ragged quality. I wouldn’t say we kept neat possession as much as made it impossible for Mexico to sustain any possession themselves. Similarities to how Klinsman had the senior team play in earlier friendlies, and the Bundesliga is sometimes like this.

    My question: can this type of game be played successfully at the highest level against skilled opponents? Will the best teams be able to exploit the high pressure to get behind and have favorable numbers against the defense? It will be fun to watch this unfold.

  82. MTs says:

    you sound like an idiot

  83. Dennis says:

    Actually the NCAA places restrictions on student/players during the academic year. The restrictions involve number of practice sessions a college team can have (I think it is unlimited if the number of players present is 3 or fewer, else not so much time except mid Aug. to end of season in early Nov.) Summer-time, student/players can play on other teams Acadamy, PDA, but cannot be coached by their college coach. There are some other exemptions for these restrictions, I think the Olympic team activities, and maybe ODP are permitted for historical reasons. I think it is the restriction of training time that is the biggest issue, not that college players are bad or that college coaches are not good teachers of the game.

  84. Dennis says:

    PDL not PDA

  85. The Imperative Voice says:

    Ironically, the best point “college soccer sucks” above could have made is that the defensive line of college draft picks scares me. Against this level of opposition Hamid is able to play out of his mind and fill the gap. But as good as Hamid is I am interested how we will fare defensively in an Olympics.

    I was impressed as well by Gyau, Corona, and Agudelo. When one bears in mind that Shea and Boyd could have been with this bunch, it’s a potentially impressive array of offensive weapons.

    All due respect but Freddy is a multi-year pro and while effective at this level I think this is roughly the level (Gold Cup/U23) where the Peter principle comes into effect. I think he is a USMNT pool type guy but I don’t see physical tools or development that scream, this is a World Cup 23-man roster player.

  86. MicahK says:

    Agudelo’s hair is ugly. D:

  87. MicahK says:

    Agudelo’s hair is ugly. D:

  88. The Imperative Voice says:

    And the thing is when I look at Gyau’s speed (or Boyd’s size, or Agudelo’s ball skills and quickness), that’s something that is upwardly scalable. He will still be fast as a senior player.

  89. Dennis says:

    I thought the keeper would have stopped Adu’s shot, but the deflection left him unable to recover in time.

  90. kwhatever says:

    I went to this game yesterday and although there was a lot of chanting going on I’m very sad to admit it was not by the US fans. In fast I would say the Mexican fans outnumbered US fans by about 4:1. That chanting was all coming from the Mexican fans.

    It was very sad, especially since I live in Dallas, but Texas does not seem to be a home venue for the USMNT.

    With that said, our boys did look very good last night. Besides some somewhat dangerous looking counterattacking by the Mexican the US had dominant control of this game. I personally was very impressed by Gyau and Diskerud.

  91. kwhatever says:

    Ugh, sorry for the typos!

  92. nathan says:

    Agreed. Hard to say for sure from the angles I saw, but given what I could see about the deflection Mix put on it, it sure looked like keeper was spot on positioned to stop it if the deflection doesn’t happen.

  93. Judging Amy says:

    I’ve definitely seen soccer players at every level do this all my life.

  94. Dennis says:

    Bradley, like Klinsmann, maybe even more so, was constantly searching for players who could keep possession. The addition of Johnson, the maturing of Altidore, Shea and Edu and the hot streak Dempsey is on helped emmensely with possession. Klinsmann is responsible for none of that except perhaps Johnson’s inclusion. If you think Bradley was not a possession oriented coach, you never listened to what he said, you just inferred from games in which the US was over-matdched technically. BTW, one of BB’s last games against a powerhouse (Argentina) say the US with more possession than it had a year earlier against Argentina demonstrating that the USA’s possession game was already improving.

    Basically Klinsmann does a better job of describing to fans what he is trying to do. Bradley confined describing his vision to the players and coaches under his supervision and, I think, pretty much felt that discussing too much detail with the press would not be productive.

    The soccer is not so much different.

  95. Dennis says:

    The down-side of this is if your arms are out to the side, even a couple inches, all the attacker has to do his hit one with the ball and you will have given up a freekick. The interpretation is: your arms were out there in order to stop the ball from going by so even though you had no time to react, it was an intentional handball because you set it up to happen (the only kind that is an infraction).

    Hence, in the PA, especially, smart defenders get their arms behind their back and out of the way. Not doing so risks a PK.

  96. Judging Amy says:

    lol

  97. Dennis says:

    I got to the game late, Ives had me taping Univision, not Telefutura. At 18 min in, Mexico was dominating possession and had a strong run, but no real good chances. The Mexican fans were cheering Ole on every pass, I was thinking this was going to be a long night. Then Gyau got the ball, the US got a corner, Aguedelo and Dix scored and had another header from a corner kick narrowly saved. After that Mexico seemed to loose composure and the US did well to frustrate them.

    From what people are saying, the US must have looked better in the first 18 minutes than the stretch I saw before the first goal.

  98. Angel of LA says:

    I hope so too. He should be the right Assistant to for JK plus he will be the next in line to take the USNMT. But lets not overrate him yet for one win. Let give him time to take this team where it should be and become one of the best coach the USA will have in the future. I LOVE IT!!! GO USA and Happy for the three USA team won.

  99. dude says:

    and the rediculous rules that arent like the rest of the world plays

    the same stupid substitution rules are also in place in high school soccer.

  100. hawaiinate says:

    Wow!! didn’t know Neymar played for the US U-23′s.

  101. Peter says:

    I was so impressed with his turn on that one play where he just flicked it by the defender and was gone!

  102. TomG says:

    Actually, he has already made his debut in the Bundesliga, so he will learn… or he won’t do well.

  103. Peter says:

    Who cares what his hair looks like as long as he scores!!!

  104. Vic says:

    Does anyone here post on Wikipedia? Joseph Gyau has a page however, it will be deleted in 7 days if its not improved. The reason is that it says he hasn’t played in pro league. I believe he’s come off the bench for Hoffenheim recently.

  105. rico says:

    Agreed. Huge room for improvement w/ the college game and changes needed… first on the list being what was already mentioned, sub rules. All I am saying is that because we now seem to be putting together a decent academy system, doesn’t/should mean scuttling college soccer. I personally think the vast majority of Nats will undoubtedly come from the Academies, but there is room for both and a need for both. And… I think the accountability an alternative presents may well force college into rethinking a few things. Without competition, we all get complacent.

  106. TomG says:

    Great game. Stylistically, it was exactly what many of us would like to see more of from USA soccer. The 2d half was not quite as beautiful as we tired, Mexico pushed more guys into attack, and the game opened up and became more chaotic. I love what I saw from Mixx, my MOTM. He showed none of the defensive lassitude and physical frailty that he was rumored to have. He did his job well defensively and allowed his technical ability to shine when he was on the ball. He looked really, really good. Gyau sprayed some of his first touch, which is not unusual for such a young fast player, but his burst at the endline is unreal. It seems like there’s no way for him to get around his man (or often men), surely he will run out of room, then suddenly he’s past them and in the box. Adu played a great all around game and so did Agudelo who showed great aerial technique on his goal, and elusive ball handling on several occasions. The backline looked solid and calm on the ball. Corona has a nice blend of speed and technical skills. Morales was very strong and composed on the ball. Ike certainly showed the athleticism he’s renowned for, but didn’t get any chances to show skills on the ball, which is what we all wonder about with him.

  107. Luke says:

    Let’s not get into this who found who game, because you could also say that many of the mainstays under Bradley’s tenure were Bruce Arena finds such as Dempsey, Donovan, Beasley, Bocanegra, Onyewu, Dolo.

    Every coach from Bora, Sampson, Arena to Bradley has talked about improving the possession game and it has improved greatly since the 1990 World Cup and yes I’m old enough to have watched this. However, we’ve always been a team that relied heavily on long balls, set pieces and counters for goal scoring.

    I think under Klinsmann and his commitment to playing a possession game, we are starting to bear the fruits form the changes he’s implemented. Let’s not forget he had tumultuous start to his USMNT coaching tenure and a growing voice of posters were not happy when we were losing or drawing games in 2011. Look at the result last 4 games all wins with 3 games on the road, 2 of which were in Europe and one in Panama.

  108. TerkyJerky says:

    Are we really that elite that we are suppose to hold most of the possession against a top ten 10 playing them at home I don’t get it. If it was BB it would had been 70/30 to Italy. The fact that we even tried to play possession soccer against Italy in Italy and was able to do it for the first 60 minute (possession was pretty even)says something about JK. He at least got the players believing in his system something that Bradley couldn’t do if Bradley was really trying to implement a possession style team.

  109. TerkyJerky says:

    Ask the German National team that’s how they play.

  110. TerkyJerky says:

    Anyone who think Shea isn’t going to start is kidding themselves. From everything I read Shea has been the most impressive U23 at all the camps.

  111. bryan says:

    this was such a good game for US fans! the ball skill these players had is some of the best i have ever seen from US players. absolutely amazing play from our midfield and forward. my olympic starting xi:

    Gyau, Jozy, Adu
    Morales, Mixx, Corona
    Chandler, Opara, Williams, Dolo
    Hamid

    i’m sorry Shea, but Gyau and Adu just look better right now. this could change, but man it would be hard to sit either of them (hard enough sitting Agudelo!). and that midfield combo worked SO WELL together. i don’t really even know who i would take other Dolo as an over aged player. Bradley could probably slide in place of Mixx. Porter is going to have a tough job trying to finalize his team! we could also use Johnson as one of the over aged players instead of Dolo:

    Gyau, Jozy, Adu
    Morales, Mixx, Corona
    Johnson, Opara, Williams, Chandler
    Hamid

    and now that i type that out, i like this second line up much more. are you kidding me?! how fast would this team be! plus, Shea, Agudelo, Boyd, etc. on the bench. amazing.

  112. Chuck says:

    Ponce and Bocanegra wouldn’t make it to the final squad for the US.

    Eventually (like with Ocegueda) we will become the first choice and they’ll get only our rejects/overlooks.

  113. Chef says:

    He played a few great linking passes. Which is great bc they could go unnoticed bc that’s what you would expect from a pro CB

  114. alex says:

    uh, mexico beat us again in azteca during wc qualifying and bludgeoned us by a total score of 7-2 in the last 2 gold cup finals.

    anyhow it’s good to see the us strike back!

  115. primoone says:

    You bing up a good point…when i saw brek play vs italy…he was at times unwatchable. His decision making withthe ball was slow and wreckless many times giving up posession That being said…gyau is young and still learning but what i like the most is that if his thought process is slow and misses the chance to attack quickly…he makes a smart play by “resetting”. You will see class wingers do this without compromising posession. Good point

  116. John says:

    Two words for you.
    Clint Dempsey.

  117. Roger says:

    He’s one of our overage players for the Olympics

  118. JK’s system? LOL. YOU are the one who saw something that no one else did.

  119. You do realize that BB was a VERY popular coach with the players, right? That they bought into the system just fine and beat the number one team in the world while playing for him. There is no such thing as a JK “system”. Players have said as much in recent interviews.

  120. I see you don’t know what you are talking about. That’s okay, too. You’ll learn.

  121. Luke says:

    Yes Klinsmanns system. I know it’s hard for a Bob Bradley poster boy to admit. First off, Bob Bradley almost always played a 4-4-1 formation or if he did experiment with other formations, he always reverted to a 4-4-2. This was especially true when we were down or tied. Under Klinsmann, we have played almost entirely in a 4-5-1, 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 or a variation of. Bradley and others tried to experiment but never had the patience to stick with it. Klinsi has. The high line the defense played with 10 offsides against Italy. You name an occassion when we’ve pulled that off in any other game. The vast majority of our goals are coming in the run of play, instead of set pieces. And from what I can see, passing has greatly improved especially out of the defenders and midfielders.