1. Thing of beauty. If you haven’t seen the first goal of the match for the U.S., you need to. It was perfect. Fabian Johnson thundering down the field from right back, interchanges with Michael Bradley who places an inch perfect overhead flick past the back four of Turkey back to Johnson who takes it one-time on his left into the corner of the net. As the Brits would say, it was sunny side up. I’d like more of this kind of fluid attacking offense, please.
2. Jozy’s hard work. It’s not often that a striker that doesn’t score gets Man of the Match type of recognition. In the first two matches of the Send-off Series, Jozy has put in a ton of work to get the offense rolling. His physicality has been top-notch. His runs into the box have been there. His aerial threat is improving. He just can’t seem to find the back of the net. With his work ethic, the goals will come, but will they come quickly enough? The World Cup isn’t kind to forwards who aren’t hitting their stride.
3. Will a real back 4 please stand up? Fabian Johnson- DeAndre Yedlin- Geoff Cameron- Matt Besler- Omar Gonzalez- John Brooks- DeMarcus Beasley- Timmy Chandler. These are all players that have a chance to start in Brazil. None of them have stood out thus far, which makes most U.S. Soccer fans wonder how the team could possibly expect to get out of the Group of Death. As it stands right now, here’s who I’d start: Johnson, Cameron, Besler, Beasley. Their cohesiveness needs to get fixed, ASAP.
Up next: USMNT v. Nigeria, Saturday, June 7th at 6 pm ET on ESPN.
- Jozy’s goal: get a goal.
- Back four unity: who will stand out?
- Formation, formation, formation: which style will the U.S. play? The midfield diamond hasn’t necessarily clicked like Jurgen hoped it would at this point, but this could be one last warmup to make it functional. If not, expect the U.S. to adopt a more familiar 4-2-3-1 for the group stage matches.
- R0le players: a combination of Mix Diskerud, Aron Johannsson, Alejandro Bedoya, Brad Davis and Julian Green need to make their case to start.
- Holding midfield: will Kyle Beckerman or Jermaine Jones hold down their role in front of a shaky back four? My pick: Beckerman.
- NO INJURIES.