Photo by ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
Jurgen Klinsmann entered the U.S. Men’s National Team’s friendly against Canada wanting to erase the memory of last summer’s dull scoreless draw in Toronto.
Rather than forget the bitter feelings from that game, they were compounded, as a young and inexperienced Canada squad held an inexperienced U.S. team to another goal-less draw on Tuesday night in Houston.
The Americans were the better side for much of the night at BBVA Compass Stadium, but once again were unable to find the breakthrough against their northern rivals. In fact, the well-organized Canada, who was routed by Denmark just three days prior, had arguably the best chance of the game off an early volley from Dwayne De Rosario.
The U.S. controlled possession for large stretches and had some decent half-chances, especially in the second half of the match after Klinsmann made a number of substitutions. Still, the Americans struggled to break down a compact Canada side that was content on sitting back and hitting on the counter.
The insertion of Benny Feilhaber and Josh Gatt at halftime helped a tepid U.S. side look more dangerous in the closing 45 minutes, but the Americans was wasteful in front of goal. Juan Agudelo, Brad Davis and Omar Gonzalez all had looks on goal but did not convert.
Gonzalez came closest to putting the Americans ahead, getting on the end of a Feilhaber free kick before heading the ball just over the crossbar.
The Americans deployed a 4-1-3-2 to start the game but switched to a 4-3-3 in the second half. Will Bruin, Alfredo Morales, Justin Morrow and Tony Beltran all earned their first caps in the game. Goalkeeper Sean Johnson, who did well to deny DeRosario in the opening minutes, started and went the distance en route to recording the cleansheet.
The U.S. national team will return to action on Feb. 6th when they travel to San Pedro Sula to face Honduras in their first qualifier in the final round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying. Klinsmann has said he will pluck anywhere from 6-9 players from this current team to the one that will compete in next week’s qualifier.
What do you think of the USMNT’s scoreless draw with Canada? Who impressed/disappointed you? Which players do you think will be taken to Honduras?
Share your thoughts below.