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US-Guatemala Thoughts: November 2008

I’m traveling on business this week but figured I’d throw open this open thread on game. I’ll come back with some thoughts later and do want to mention Jamaica has an early goal against Canada and the announcement of that score in San Pedro Sula should open up the Mexico-Honduras match.


Great second half goals for Kenny Cooper and Freddy Adu pace the United States. Both players showed their quality tonight and surely left an impression on Bob Bradley.

But the real excitement was elsewhere in CONCACAF. Mexico’s lack of composure, and unsporting play took a turn for the worse tonight as Carlos Vela deliberetely tried to injure Amado Guevara and was rightfully sent off and probably faces a multiple game ban. In addition Gerardo Torrado was also sent off: All of this happened after Honduras scored the winning goal early in the second half.  These sorts of unsporting fouls and showmanship have become typical of Mexico when they fall behind in games or feel that the officials are not calling the game the way they would like. This continues to be a troubling trend and needs to be addressed by CONCACAF. The officials in the region need to send a stronger signal to Mexican players that the constant diving, chippy fouls and attempts to injure the opposition cannot be tolerated. Sven Goran Eriksson as a manager understands the culture of football and after managing a side like England whose sporting play is as honorable as any on the planet, it is shocking to see footballers he is managing behave in such an unbecoming fashion every time they walk on the pitch.

Jamaica crushed Canada 3-0 (including a goal by Omar Cummings of the Rapids) but Liverpool and England hero John Barnes sees his men go out on goal difference despite a valiant fight. Jamaica won all three matches in qualifying after Rene Simoes was fired and replaced by Barnes. Mexico advances on goal difference, but Sven Goran Eriksson’s side is going to have to improve substantially to punch a ticket to South Africa. Excuse me while I shed a tear for Jamaica, who fully deserved to advance over Mexico not only because they were the better team but because they were better sportsmen.

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  1. eplnfl

    November 20, 2008 at 8:54 am

    My thoughts are the same as joseph, who really expected the US to play well in a game that did not matter. Even better, this was not the same old line-up that Bradley has been using since 2006, but had younger players taking the lead. Altidore and Adu, and Guzan, Change You Can Believe In! Ok, I stole the line but any USA fan had to start dreaming about what the future could be when Adu sent the ball into the back of the net. Looking forward to more of that!

  2. joseph030

    November 20, 2008 at 8:07 am

    I thought this was very well played game by the US. Altidore kept getting mugged and still played on. Great goals by Adu and Cooper. This was a much more open game with the passing and the like. The refereeing in this game was poor.

    I thought watching this game that the US would not play well, but I was very impressed.

  3. Ryan

    November 19, 2008 at 11:18 pm

    Amen on Jamaica. I wish we could substitute them for a pretty weak El Salvador.

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