Americans Abroad: Weekend Rewind

Sacha Kljestan Anderlecht 5 (Getty Images)

By FRANCO PANIZO

Sacha Kljestan is making a real good argument for why he might be the most in-form American playing right now.

Kljestan scored a goal in a third consecutive game for RSC Anderlecht on Saturday, netting the opener in a 3-1 home win over OH Leuven. Kljestan benefited from a deflection on his shot in the 43rd minute, but he made the chance by alertly pouncing on a turnover deep in Leuven’s half. The goal raised Kljestan’s season total to seven in 13 Pro League matches, and made him the team’s leading scorer this season.

Jermaine Jones also found a way to make an impact for his club, and he did so in a mere 10-minute cameo. Coming off the bench in the 80th minute of Schalke 04’s clash with Hertha Berlin on Saturday, Jones helped set up an insurance goal deep into stoppage time to gives the Royal Blues a 2-0 victory. Schalke now sit in sixth place in the Bundesliga with 17 points from 11 games.

For Michael Bradley, this weekend marked his return to AS Roma’s starting lineup. Bradley made his first start for the Serie A league leaders in Sunday’s duel with Torino, and the veteran went the distance despite receiving a yellow card early in the second half. Unfortunately for Bradley and Roma, the match ended in a 1-1 draw that snapped their perfect 10-game winning streak.

Here is how the Americans Abroad fared this weekend:

ENGLAND

Premiership

  • Tim Howard started, played 90 minutes, made six saves and received a yellow card in Everton’s 0-0 draw vs. Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
  • Jozy Altidore started and played 45 minutes in Sunderland’s 1-0 loss vs. Hull City on Saturday.
  • Geoff Cameron started, played 90 minutes and received a yellow card in Stoke City’s 1-1 draw vs. Southampton on Saturday.
  • Maurice Edu did not dress for Stoke City.
  • Brek Shea did not dress for Stoke City.
  • Brad Guzan started, played 90 minutes and made four saves in Aston Villa’s 0-0 draw vs. West Ham United on Saturday.
  • Brad Friedel dressed but did not play in Tottenham Hotspur’s 0-0 draw vs. Everton on Sunday.

Championship

  • Jonathan Spector did not dress in Birmingham City’s 1-0 loss vs. Charlton Athletic on Saturday. He is recovering from a thigh injury.
  • Tim Ream started, played 90 minutes and received a yellow card in Bolton Wanderers’ 2-0 win vs. AFC Bournemouth on Saturday.
  • Stuart Holden did not dress for Bolton Wanderers. He is recovering from a knee injury.
  • Zak Whitbread did not dress in Derby County’s 2-1 loss vs. Queens Park Rangers on Saturday. He is recovering from an injury.
  • Eric Lichaj started and played 90 minutes in Nottingham Forest’s 1-0 loss vs. Blackpool on Saturday.
  • Danny Williams did not dress in Reading’s 5-2 loss vs. Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday. He is recovering from a foot injury.
  • Oguchi Onyewu dressed but did not play in Queens Park Rangers’ 2-1 win vs. Derby County on Saturday.
  • Duane Holmes dressed but did not play in Huddersfield Town’s 2-1 loss vs. Wigan Athletic on Saturday.

ITALY

  • Michael Bradley started, played 90 minutes and received a yellow card in AS Roma’s 1-1 draw vs. Torino on Sunday.

GERMANY

Bundesliga

  • Fabian Johnson did not dress in TSG 1899 Hoffenheim’s 2-1 loss vs. Bayern Munich on Saturday. He is recovering from an ankle injury.
  • Joe Gyau did not dress for TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.
  • Timmy Chandler started and played 90 minutes in FC Nurnberg’s 3-0 loss vs. SC Freiburg on Saturday.
  • Michael Parkhurst did not dress in FC Augsburg’s 2-1 win vs. Mainz 05 on Saturday.
  • Jermaine Jones came off the bench, played 10 minutes and helped set up a goal in Schalke 04’s 2-0 win vs. Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

  • Steve Cherundolo did not dress in Hannover 96′s 3-2 loss vs. Werder Bremen on Sunday.
  • John Brooks did not dress in Hertha Berlin’s 2-0 loss vs. Schalke 04 on Saturday.

2. Bundesliga

  • Alfredo Morales started and played 90 minutes in FC Ingolstadt 04’s 1-1 draw vs. SC Paderborn 07 on Friday.
  • Andrew Wooten did not dress in Kaiserslautern’s 4-1 win vs. St Pauli on Saturday.
  • Bobby Wood dressed but did not play in TSV 1860 Munich’s 3-1 loss vs. Dynamo Dresden on Sunday.

FRANCE

  • Alejandro Bedoya started and played 90 minutes in FC Nantes’ 1-1 draw vs. Montpellier on Sunday.

NETHERLANDS

  • Aron Johannsson started and played 90 minutes in AZ Alkmaar’s 2-0 win vs. ADO Den Haag on Saturday.

RUSSIA

  • Eugene Starikov did not dress in FK Tom’ Tomsk’s 1-0 loss vs. Dinamo Moscow on Saturday.

BELGIUM

  • Sacha Kljestan started, played 66 minutes and scored a GOAL in RSC Anderlecht’s 3-1 win vs. OH Leuven on Sunday. You can see the goal here.

DENMARK

  • Conor O’Brien started and played 90 minutes in Odense BK’s 1-0 loss vs. Aalborg BK on Sunday.
  • Babajide Ogunbiyi started and played 90 minutes in Viborg FF’s 2-1 loss vs. AGF Aarhus on Sunday.
  • Mike Grella dressed but did not play for Viborg FF.

AUSTRIA

  • Terrence Boyd started and played 55 minutes in Rapid Vienna’s 4-2 win vs. Admira on Saturday.

SWEDEN

  • Brian Span did not dress in Djurgarden IF’s 1-1 draw vs. Oster on Sunday.

NORWAY

  • Mix Diskerud came off the bench and played 20 minutes in Rosenborg BK’s 2-1 win vs. Viking on Sunday.
  • Josh Gatt did not dress in Molde FK’s 1-0 loss vs. Sarpsborg 08 on Sunday. He is recovering from a knee injury.
  • Ethan Horvath did not dress for Molde FK.
  • Ben Spencer did not dress for Molde FK .
  • Steve Clark started and played 90 minutes in Honefoss BK’s 3-1 win vs. Sogndal on Sunday.

MEXICO

  • Michael Orozco started and played 90 minutes in Puebla’s 1-1 draw vs. Pachuca on Saturday.
  • DaMarcus Beasley started and played 90 minutes for Puebla.
  • Jose Torres came off the bench and played 21 minutes in Tigres UANL’s 1-1 draw vs. Club Leon on Saturday.
  • Jonathan Bornstein did not dress for Tigres UANL.
  • Greg Garza started and played 90 minutes in Club Tijuana’s 4-1 win vs. Atlante on Friday.
  • Edgar Castillo came off the bench and played 45 minutes for Club Tijuana.
  • Herculez Gomez came off the bench and played 12 minutes for Club Tijuana.
  • Paul Arriola dressed but did not play for Club Tijuana.
  • Joe Corona did not dress for Club Tijuana.
  • Joaquin Alonso Hernandez dressed but did not play in Monterrey’s 3-0 win vs. Veracruz on Saturday.

BRAZIL

  • Freddy Adu did not dress in Bahia’s 0-0 draw vs. Gremio on Sunday.

—–

What do you think of these performances? How impressed are you by Kljestan’s recent form? Expecting Bradley to receive more starts in the coming weeks?

Share your thoughts below.

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62 Responses to Americans Abroad: Weekend Rewind

  1. Badwolf says:

    Brian Span is no longer with Djurgaardens IF, he is a free agent

  2. Travis says:

    that mustache, oh boy

    • SilverRey says:

      Movember happens all year round for Sacha….

    • Bart Bagialemani says:

      That’s all you have to say abou the only America either dressed or scored a goal this weekend? Get out of here. Btw, do you actually like his mustache?

  3. Bobb says:

    Joe Corona isn’t even making the 18 anymore?

    • biff says:

      oops. replying to Bobb: this is disturbing. Wish SBI would do a story on this to find out what is going on. I am suspecting that Joe for one reason or another is in the coach’s dog house of a non-form issue.

    • Gary Page says:

      The manager must be really shaking up the line up because he started and played Garza, left Arriola on the bench and played Castillo very little. Garza usually only gets about 10 or 20 minutes as a late sub , Castillo is usually a mainstay and Arriola has been starting in place of Corona. So, it’s not just Corona’s absence that is unusual.

  4. biff says:

    this is disturbing. Wish SBI would do a story on this to find out what is going on. I am suspecting that Joe for one reason or another is in the coach’s dog house.

  5. Strider257 says:

    I think it would be nice to note that Jozy came off after 45 minutes because Sunderland were down to 9 men, with 2 receiving red cards before the first half ended. It makes it clearer that it wasn’t his performance that caused him to come off after just 45 mins, but the need to replace defenders that were thrown out.

    • Grunt says:

      No doubt two red cards were major factors, but nobody should be under illusion about Altidore’s play before he came off; it was awful.

      It is difficult to shine when one has a bad team around oneself, but he is not doing much to help.

      • John says:

        Starting 3 strikers was clearly a mistake for Sunderland and you could see if after 10 minutes. They had no midfeild and the forwards were lost trying to drop back to move the ball.

    • Josh D says:

      Agreed. Context around some of these stories would make this series a must-read. I.e. why was Brooks out?

      Jozy is having an awful time. Unfortunately, he’s a confidence player; and as that confidence continues to falter, so too, are his performances.

    • Shazam says:

      I’m impressed that they only lost by one goal being 2 men down.

      • Michael Stypulkoski says:

        And it was an OG at that. But make no mistake, Hull deserved the win. Even with eleven men Sunderland was awful.

  6. Nihal says:

    DmB started at leftback

    • Beto says:

      Good stuff!

    • Nate Dollars says:

      left wing-back (with 3 CBs). it’s still better than him playing attacking winger every game, but just want to be accurate.

      • bryan says:

        exactly, the coach, who recently had good things to say about Beas and Orozco, stated he prefers Beas at LWB in a 5-man defense. Orozco plays the right-most CB which evolves into a RB at times.

  7. Beto says:

    Its official Sunderland is going down. Hope Jozy can at least look good at some point this year a secure a move.

    Whats Babajide Ogunbiyi’s story?

  8. ATX_Colin says:

    Im not sure there would be much of an interest in Altidore from any revelent teams. Its not like he is lighting the worl on fire at the moment. Unfortunately i think he will have to ride this sinking ship out.

    • the unmistakeable Ronaldinho says:

      There will still be interest in Jozy if it comes to that. Plenty of teams scouted him in his 2 years in Holland and will know that Sunderland isn’t a fit for any striker. However, Sunderland aren’t going to sell one of their newly acquired assets in January. He will have to wait until after the World Cup most likely, assuming they go down.

      • biff says:

        serious question: Jozy was brought in by a coach who was fired, so if current Sunderland mangement is not satisfied with Jozy (or Jozy expresses unhappiness and wants out), why wouldn’t Sunderland sell him?

        • DanO says:

          Buy high, sell low is terrible business

          • West of the Cascades says:

            Unless you know that next year your business is going to be operating with a lot less revenue, perhaps because of predictable structural changes in the market environment (e.g. relegation) — so selling Jozy could be Sunderland “cutting their losses” before going down to the Championship.

    • Gary Page says:

      If Jozy has a decent World Cup, that will out weigh what happens at a terrible Sunderland.

    • Nate Dollars says:

      any scout/manager actually watching his games would see good things, i think. jozy’s actually been playing well (not this last game, though).

      and, as others have said, if he keeps it together for the usmnt next summer, no one’s going to care too much about this awful sunderland team.

      • MDC says:

        given Jozy’s USMNT performance I want to start a Dempsey to Sunderland loan campaign. Gets Dempsey some EPL time prior to the WC, partners our two forwards for multiple games and gives Sunderland a proven EPL attacking option…everybody wins

  9. Josh D says:

    I think the theme of this week is “What goes up, must come down.” After such a stellar week for our boys, we’re back to an awful showing.

    And the one guy who is taking his chances can’t reproduce those performances for the national team. Hopefully, Kljestan can find a transfer to a harder league so he knows what it’s like to play against tougher teams week-in-and-out.

    Chandler has to be included in the next USMNT roster. He’s playing, he’s doing better, and we’re desperate. To that end, I hope we see Lichaj too. Hope FJ recovers in time. Even if Brooks isn’t 100% fit, I’d like to see him included just to keep him on the radar.

    Aron didn’t score this week. The ice has melted…

    • rainORshine says:

      this idea that kljestan a) has had plenty of opportunity under JK and b) does not reproduce form for nats… are myths that seems to grow despite evidence that directly refutes it.

      sacha has 2 starts since JK came in. beckerman, torres, edu and williams have a combined 54

      sacha was very good in apps v bosnia and jamiaca. over 90 minutes v panama he was judged – by respectable voices (such as SBI, espn, nbc…) – to be a solid, positive influence relative to his teammates.

      i am telling you what the consensus verdict was v panama, not asking what you and the rest of the sacha-illiterate USMNT public thought.

      please name ANY CMs who are playing 90 min week-in week-out at a higher level

      feel free to continue in this “sacha is mediocre” fantasy that you and so many fans like to believe… just realize that it makes you look more and more foolish

      • John says:

        To add on to that how often is it said playing beside Bradley makes Jones or Cameron look better. We’ve never seen a Kljestan Bradley pair under Klinsmann other then the end of the Bosnia match where it looked promising.

        • GW says:

          It rarely happens because the role they both play the best is the same role.

          JK has stated clearly that Sacha’s main competition for time is Mikey.

          And JK sees Mikey as the better player.

      • Shaggie96 says:

        Amen. I would love to see a Kljestan-Bradley pairing as well.

    • biff says:

      We have a guy starting each week at right back in one of the top leagues against world-class competition and doing a good job in the name of Geoff Cameron, who I think at the current time is top of the US right back depth chart. I did not see Nurnberg’s 0-3 loss against Freiburg over the weekend, but reports say Chandler reverted to his bad form, which his been the rule for nearly the past calender year. And if you are coach of the USMNT you have to consider whether bringing Timothy back into the team after he accepted only one call-up in nearly 20 WCQ games is injecting bad chemistry into the mix. It could be that Timothy is not popular with his USMNT colleagues. I do agree, however, that a call-up to see what Lichaj can do is long overdue.

      • Brett says:

        This has been addressed ad nauseam. Cameron’s RB position for Stoke is different than what Klinsmann asks of his RB with the USMNT. At Stoke he rarely ranges into the overlapping runs because they are more concerned with staying in their blocks on the back side. Klinsmann wants his RBs pressing high up, almost high enough to force the center backs to split and distribute to the flanks through the middle, forcing the outside backs to keep their width and push further up the field.

        Cameron is not comfortable with chalk on his boots, he does not have the pace or dribbling skill to beat a defender on an overlap, and he does not possess the quality of service to make forays into the final third worth making.

        I’m not saying there’s not a place for Geoff on the field, I personally prefer him to Jones in the deep lying role, and I think he’s probably our 3rd or 4th best option at center back as well.

        • AcidBurn says:

          Cameron is the RB you want to stay home to bunker in against Germany or Spain.

          JK’s not a military man, he doesn’t bunker. He wants RB’s who can fly.

          • beto says:

            +1 i agree with everything above that Cameron, while he is the best RB in the pool, might not be the best RB for JK’s system. that said could JK’s system change a bit when we go up against the best of the best…

            The only game that we have played in the past few years that I honestly think compares to a WC game was the game @ Azteca. In that game we didn’t bunker like other big games in years past but we just kept the back line very organized and conservative often with 1 cdm helping out. There Cameron wasn’t great but not bad as this is similar to how Stoke plays.

            When we come across Brasil, Spain, Portugal, Germany, etc at the WC I would expect JK to prepare the team like he did back in March before the Azteca.. this might be the time for Cameron.

        • biff says:

          @Brett, AcidBurn: Sorry, guys, old news. Both your comments tell me you have not seen Stoke under Mark Hughes this season. Stoke is much more attack-oriented than under Tony Pulis and Cameron is spending a lot of his time charging up the right flank and even cutting into the center, where he scored a goal a couple of weeks ago (and than back-tracking to play extremely tenacious defense. Cameron is a much better defensively at right back than Timothy Chandler and at least as good offensively, if not better.

        • Nate Dollars says:

          ‘At Stoke he rarely ranges into the overlapping runs because they are more concerned with staying in their blocks on the back side.’

          you haven’t been watching. under hughes, the outside backs overlap consistently throughout each game.

      • bryan says:

        Chandler will be there.

    • Brett says:

      Keep the sky-is-falling talk to a minimum. Lichaj can’t get a call for Camp Cupcake, so don’t expect him to suddenly pop back up on JK’s radar.

      I’m sick of this nonsense about players having to move up to a better league as soon as they get settled. It’s hard to earn a spot on a club, and it’s even harder to earn regular first team minutes. We should be happy to have our guys playing wherever they are.

      How did a move to tougher conditions help Clint Dempsey? He wen’t from the uncontested American dynamo, bossing 90 minutes regularly for Fulham, to just another scrub struggling to find the net at Spurs. And now, where is he?

      How is Jozy’s move to England and a poor Sunderland side working out? Is he really better off than he was at AZ, playing regular shifts and scoring goals against slightly weaker opposition?

      • Dman says:

        Well said Brett,

        It would be very difficult to be excited about having our starting striker in Brazil coming off a 1 or 2 goal season. I just don’t see how this Sunderland move does anything but send Jozy back to his run of poor USMNT form. I don’t think he is learning much or developing his game at Sunderland.

        I would rather see an in-form Aron Johannsson coming off a great season at AZ in the starting lineup in Brazil.

        • John says:

          If you’re going to start an under sized striker who isn’t going to win the ball or give you hold up play you might as well start Donovan at striker.

        • Maykol says:

          Altidore was fire in holland but never played well for the us so I don’t get your point

        • GW says:

          You haven’t watched Sunderland.

          Right now Jozy the best all around US forward.
          AJ is different from Jozy and doesn’t give you the same skill set.

          AJ is scoring a lot of goals but so what? They don’t
          play defense in Holland.

          Let him prove he can score in a tougher league before you give him any credit.

      • biff says:

        Wrong about Dempsey-Cakes. Clint’s game improved tremendously last year while he was Tottenham, and during Jozy’s USMNT drought Clint basically carried the USMNT on his back. I think Clint would be a better player for the USMNT starting Cup games for Tottenham and as a second-half sub than starting every game and playing 90 minutes on a ping-pong football table in Seattle.

      • GW says:

        So you are against players seeking to prove themselves against better competition and believing in themselves enough to risk it?

        Where were you when most USMNT fans were crapping all over Landon for doing exactly as you suggested?
        So you want a USMNT going to a World Cup full of players who don’t have the cojones to take or who don’t think they are very good or just okay?
        Wow, I’ll bet that is the basis of a team for the ages.
        The no risk, lets just get comfortable here and be okay team. I prefer teams with fewer milquetoasts.

    • John says:

      One factor you still have to consider with Chandler is kind of resetting the clock back to before the Costa Rica match. Are you going to tell the players that have put so much into becoming a team and qualifing, alright now Chandler’s decided he wants to play so you’re out.

      • Lost in Space says:

        Who exactly are you speaking of when “tell the players that have put so much into becoming a team”? Right Back is one of the spots on the field where we’ve done a lot of rotation over the past 12 months..(Evans, Parkhurst, Orozco, Chandler, Dolo). Of this group…Evans is the current starter, Parkhurst doesn’t dress for his club, Dolo had another set-back in his recovery from Injury, Orozco has seen very little time.
        Brining in Chandler and Lichaj to challenge Evans is a smart thing to do as it keeps the compitition going.

        • John says:

          I can’t say I actually know how any of the players feel. It just seems like Chandler has had chances to show some level of commitment to the team but really hasn’t. Lichaj at least doesn’t have the same history of being “injured” before every call up. Also why did Donovan have to play in the Gold Cup in the middle of his MLS season but Chandler didn’t?

          • bryan says:

            JK stopped calling in Chandler at one point when he was in bad form and then not even playing..in addition to the commitment issues. that was around the time of the Gold Cup.

            Chandler will be called into the November games and i’d bet he, barring an injury/bad form, will be in the US squad from then on.

            • John says:

              Almost half the Gold Cup squad hadn’t even played a match in 6 months. Shea, Parkhurst, Oguchi weren’t exactly in form.

              • bryan says:

                Not true, only the players you listed and Holden. Not anywhere near half. Completely different circumstances as well. None of them had commitment issues on top of everything else.

      • GW says:

        John,

        Absolutely.

        If Chandler plays well what could the displaced person possibly have to say ?

        It’s unfair? You know what I’d say if I’m the manager?

        ” Hey you had X number of games, plenty of games to prove Chandler was your b+++h. And did you step up and sieze the opportunity? No! I told you what we needed and you did not give it to us. Don’t blame me if you can’t hack it with the big boys. ”

        JK is not some soccer mom who has to make sure everyone’s feelings are not hurt and every one wins and everyone gets an award.
        If you are not a fan of Chandler, fine. But if you are a fan of the USMNT you would be glad the USMNT could fill a hole with a good player, even if you don’t personally like him .

  10. Beto says:

    Sasha and Anderlect on a roll! Next up PSG in Paris!

  11. Joe says:

    Will Packwood played another full 90 for Bristol Rovers. Hopefully, when his loan ends, he will get back on track to breaking in to Birmingham City’s lineup.
    A future CB pairing of Brooks and Packwood might be outstanding.

  12. Phil B says:

    Jozy’s current form is reminiscent to his goalless streak with the Nats… no service. I think what is most surprising is how much Sunderland invested over the summer trying to push for a strong season; it’s just been a huge disappointment for the club.

  13. Suzio says:

    Why isn’t Freddy Adu getting any playing time? He should move to the Premier league.

    • MiamiAl says:

      Poor Freddy Adu. Will we ever see him again???

    • Good Jeremy says:

      I hate to see his potential wasted.

      He has a unique skillset that we may have never seen before, but he also has a poor attitude and refuses to bulk up or play defense.

      • GW says:

        “He has a unique skillset that we may have never seen before”

        I’m curious as to why you say that.

        I’ve followed Freddy since his DC United days and he is skilled and talented but unique? To me that means one of a kind and that is simply not true about Freddy’s skillset. Rare but not unique.

        What made him unique was his age but not his skill. Players with that level of skill usually have it by their early teens like Freddy.Then for them to become the pros they want to be , their bodies and soccer minds have to develop properly.

        Maybe you never saw him as a kid but Eddie Gaven was a really skilled and talented teenager. I would have loved to have seen him and Freddy too, get better coaching as teens. Maybe Eddie would have kept some of his flair to go along with his professional discipline and Freddy would have developed some discipline to go along with his flair.

        There are lots of kids who can do what Freddy does but they stop doing it as much as he still does because they want to earn a living and become pros. So they focus on getting the skills that will get them hired.

        Freddy got rich at 14 so he never had that problem.