After that surprising run in this past Confederations Cup from the Egypt Match all the way to the final, we all saw what happens when you face a top side like Brazil that has depth from the top players in Europe all the way back home to their parents house kicking the ball around once they start walking. The problems for the USA wasn’t so much that their starting eleven was bad, but who can help when Bradley calls them off the bench to keep any form of a lead or who can get that equalizer and find a way to win the match.
That’s what this current Gold Cup tournament was about for Head Coach Bob Bradley. Find the players that can step up and fill in that Depth problem when they face Mexico this coming August 12th and the rest of the World Cup Qualifiers to face the top sides of CONCACAF and when they are ready to play against anyone in their group for this coming World Cup. Besides Charlie Davies who impressed during the Confederations Cup & the Gold Cup we can see that many players have also proven very quickly that they could be ready for the bigger matches with the senior squad.
Robbie Rogers & Stuart Holden have shown in the group stage they are ready to join the senior side. Rogers with his crossing abillity during the run of play setting up goals for Freddy Adu & Holden as well as scoring a goal in that match against Grenada has his stock rising.
Stuart Holden has also shown to be a hero at the right moment getting that late equalizer in second half stoppage time against Haiti and he is strong in the air as well when he headed in the goal against Grenada. How about a calming influence in the middle of the field where Kyle Beckerman was trying to spring the forwards into a scoring chance and was able to get the ball away from the opposition.
How about a re-birth of a playing career in DC United’s Santino Quaranta. So much has been written about him with all the negative things he has done to himself and what a strike against Honduras at RFK to get his home town fans screaming for him and I believe we were all screaming for him when he scored that goal. Troy Perkings has aquitted himself well in goal and made the big saves when he had to.
Sooner than later our National Team needs to be replenshed from the top players who will get towards the end of their careers with younger players who want to start their International Careers. While some of these kids took the express straight to Europe to establish their career, there are some that are on the local being here in Major League Soccer. While we all understand that the rules and setup of the league is a headache we all have to know that without this league being seen as the top division of US Soccer non of these players who are on this current Gold Cup Roster would have that chance to show what they got.
Of course I want to see this squad win the championship and prove to the rest of the Confederation that even without our top stars like Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard and so on that we have the talent and now creating some depth for our National Team that they can get the job done. Just like Brazil who only had Kaka, Lucio, Daniel Alves & Julio Cesar they showed that they didn’t need Ronaldinho to win the Confederations Cup.