Scratch my half time comment on Gooch. His poor form for Newcastle returned in the two bonehead plays he made to be sent off.
The US players need to become mentally tougher. Guatemala now has twice in three months given CONCACAF countries a blueprint for beating the US. Cheap shots and rough play are part of the game and without an enforcer like Pablo Mastroeni in the US midfield, Guatemala was able to really dictate second half play.
Landon Donovan showed some great spirit out there tonight playing on the right side.
Bocanegra and Onyewu cannot continue to play together on the back line when both are often so poorly positioned.
Eddie Johnson contributed nothing to the US attack. After a great attacking first half which lacked proper finishing, Johnson’s entry to the game killed the US attack because he so badly mistimed his runs and played about as timidly as one can in an international football match.
Jay Demerit upon his entrance understood the physical nature of the game and unlike Onyewu he knew how to push and shove without being called for a foul or being booked. Perhaps that’s why he has been successful in England unlike Gooch.
DeMarcus Beasley made some nice runs and created the few chances the US had in the second half but having someone so small and physically weak in the match is a major liability in a match like this.
Steve Ralston gave a nice effort after being forced to play right back. His positioning was good and he picked the proper times to go forward.
The US will not win the Gold Cup if they play like they did tonight.