Thoughts on USA/England

12 Jun

England took an early lead off a Steven Gerrard goal, but the U.S. battled back to get a lucky goal from Clint Dempsey off a horrid Robert Green miscue.  The game ended in a 1-1 draw so both teams end up with one point.  We’ll have to see where the rest of the group stands tomorrow as Algeria and Slovenia square off at 7:30 a.m. ET.

Thoughts on USA/England:

  • Timmy Howard is the man.  Despite getting cleated in the chest by Emile Heskey in the first half, Howard came up huge for the U.S.  He made several stellar saves and also gobbled up a couple crosses destined for an English foot.  He was voted man of the match and rightly so.
  • The U.S. defense has got to improve.  The England forwards and mids had a ton of room to operate and were unlucky to do better with the chances they had.  Carlos Bocanegra got beaten several times on the wing by both Glen Johnson and Aaron Lennon, which was rather surprising because Bocanegra is generally pretty solid.
  • Michael Bradley and Ricardo Clark were unimpressive.  Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan kept getting sucked into the middle to help play defense, so when the U.S. finally got the ball back, there was no one on the wing for an outlet pass.  The U.S. really could have benefitted from having a player like Benny Feilhaber or Jose Torres partner with Bradley in the midfield.  Both of them have an excellent touch and good vision.
  • Despite all the chances England had, Wayne Rooney only had a couple decent looks at goal.  The U.S. defense did a nice job of shutting him down (most of the time).
  • The referee didn’t ruin the game.  That was a worry going in due to some issues with being card happy and generally insane.  Each team picked up three yellow cards and they were all good calls.  There weren’t any game-altering decisions the ref missed.
  • Robert Green got his World Cup career off to the worst start possible, spilling a clean save on Dempsey’s long range effort into the back of the net.  You got to feel bad for the guy, but as a U.S. fan, I’ll take a goal any way  I can.
  • I was impressed with the U.S. fortitude after giving up a ridiculously early goal.  The team could have easily caved and lost 3-0 or 4-0, but they kept at and were ultimately rewarded for their efforts.
  • The U.S. plays much better when they push the ball forward.  They give up goals when they sit back, which is exactly what happened on Gerrard’s goal.
  • The U.S. still needs to learn how to play the full 90 minutes.  Like I posted yesterday, short lapses can kill you in a tournament like this.
  • For England, it’s a disappointing result.  The team came into the game fully expecting to win and by all accounts, probably should have.  They’ll go into the next game against Algeria pissed off.  David Beckham hated it too, especially the U.S. goal. Here’s proof:

What did you think of today’s result?


2 Responses to “Thoughts on USA/England”

  1. Nuno Barreto June 12, 2010 at 5:26 pm #

    Fair result, despite the USA being a total fluke from the English goalkeeper.

    But if i had ti keep winner i would go with England!

    I agree with you that USA has to improve their Defense, they should pressure the ball more the English players had a lot of unopposed crosses and passes!

    Very good review!

  2. Eli June 13, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    Beckham bitchface will make me lol forever.

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