USA 1 : Japan 0


Well the US gets three valuable points today. A few observations:

For the third major tournament in a row (2006 World Cup, 2007 U-20 World Cup, 2008 Olympics) the US has come out in a 4-5-1. The fact that this has been done under three different coaches tells me its is the ideal formation for the US play with.

Memo to Bob Bradley: you have an assistant in Peter Nowak willing to make tactical changes based on the opposition. You need to learn to do the same. Nowak showed his maturity as a manager with his changes today.

Marvell Wynne was my Man of the Match. Michael Orozco also deserves mention for a solid effort.

Robbie Rogers was the best US attacking player today constantly finding space and making daring runs.

Sacha Kljestan’s play which was unsettled for about 35 minutes was actually quite good towards the end of the first half and on into the second.

Michael Bradley did a good job of fronting the back four and keeping the flow of play in the US’ favor early in the 2nd half.

Mo Edu’s confidence at the back despite his aggressive play which led to two PK shouts from Japan was very nice to see from a player whose experience is limited on the backline.

Freddy Adu tried to do too much instead of using his team mates. His great shot on goal in the 31st minute and his great move that created a penalty shout in the second half not withstanding, his quality was overall somewhat less than expected.

NBC’s decision to offer every match with high quality streaming video online has been a life saver.

Speaking of announcers, I loved the fact that Rob Stone and John Harkes mispronounced the names of Matt Leinhart and Brett Favre during the Barca-Red Bull match on Wednesday night. Having to put up with the names of soccer players being butchered all the time, turnabout is fair play!

Feel free to comment on this thread during the match.

Guzan reacts late to Lee’s attempt on goal. Needs to come of his line quicker in the future. Nonetheless, the US wins 1-0.

Four minutes of stoppage time.

Minute 90: Good defense by Edu on the touchline.

Brazil takes a 1-0 lead on Belgium. Hernanes the goal scorer.

Minute 88: With the US parking the bus thanks to the additions of Feilhaber and Szetela, Japan is taking the game to the US and for the second time in the last ten minutes Mo Edu commits a foul in the box.

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