Recapping the first 45-minutes:
- Speed kills…Davies (not “Davis” as the announcers were saying) with a great run and placement…will he succumb to fatigue in the second half?
- Poor passing…the US is not valuing every touch and is giving possession away to easy
- Good placement by Donovan on the set pieces…good work all-around
- This isn’t Go Fish…stop asking for cards…the epidemic of bookings by the US “A” team leads right to the coach
- Bradley and Dempsey are underwhelming
- Beautiful strike by El Tri for the goal…of course it came after ten straight minutes of possession in the US defensive third
Looking for in the second 45-minutes: [post-game follow-up in green]
- How will the US come out of the locker room…questionable second halves have been the hallmark of the summer for the USMNT (see: Haiti, Mexico-Gold Cup, Brazil) — solid start to the half…broke-down late
- More quality possessions…not America’s strength, but it has to get better — marginal improvement, forwards were able to do a little more with the long balls
- When will Bradley go to the bench…don’t want to see him wait until 70 to get Benny in. — TSG homeys Feilhaber and Holden came in around the 60th for Ching and Clark. Holden was solid, Benny showed some passion, but his touch was a little off
- Altidore to come in for Ching…my preference, but it could depend on Davies fitness and whether Bradley decided to shift Dempsey up top. — Ching left, Dempsey moved up high, Altidore came on late for a cramping Davies…I think Davies would have played the full 90 without the fitness issue. Alitdore was a non-factor
- The fatigue factor…How the teams progress from the 18 on the change of possession — the game slowed in the second half, but the blow-by on Donovan may have been a result of fatigue…Davies was a casualty
- Bradley NOT playing for the tie. — stayed the course in the second half looking for the one magic long ball
Check back a little later today, Matthew will have the full recap and I’ll add my take in the comments. Right now I’ll just say, don’t blame the ref.