ONE GOAL Contributor
|Deuce's return to the Starting XI did not yield any Goals for Klinsmann's gang in a scoreless draw|
In a forgettable friendly, the US were unable to effective attack the Canadian defense in their 0-0 draw at BMO Field in Toronto on Sunday.
The US only mustered three shots on goal and nine shots in total and were often unable to effectively attack the Canadian midfield.
There isn’t much to talk about in terms of game recap except forward Simeon Jackson missed a sitter for Canada and US defender Clarence Goodson had a header saved by Lars Hirschfeld. Now to the tactics.
The Canadians reprised the tactics their u-23 used to upset the US in March and looked to pack the midfield and rely on the pace of their wingers to generate chances on the counter. The US senior team’s fullbacks were better than their u-23 counter parts, which limited Canada’s chances.
The Canadians’ faith in Head Coach Stephen Hart may finally pay off as his pragmatic strategy worked off in cancelling out the US. Julian De Guzman marked Clint Dempsey out of the game. Nik Ledgertwood and Will Johnson were effective in cutting off passing options for Michael Bradley as Bradley had his lowest pass completion rate of the last three games. Bradley was too deep and was often barely ahead of the center backs whenever the US were trying to build out of the back.
With Bradley too deep and Dempsey man-marked, there was a two versus one in the midfield which took Jermaine Jones out of the game. Jose Francisco Torres and Landon Donovan were left out wide on the wings and were both not effective. Torres’ passing and crossing were terrible and the ineffectiveness of Landon Donovan as a winger has been notable throughout his career. Steve Cherundolo was a respectable at right back but has always been a support option not a true attacking back. The US were unlucky to have Fabian Johnson suffer a calf strain during warm ups but Edgar Castillo was not terrible or great replacing Johnson on short notice.
Looking ahead to World Cup Qualifying, US Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann needs to figure out how to get his best players in the best positions to succeed. Michael Bradley cannot be right in front of the defense and Landon Donovan cannot be out wide. When teams hone in on Clint Dempsey, Klinsmann has to find another player that can make a difference. If he cannot then he must switch tactics to something that alleviates the work from Dempsey.
The US are still very much a work in progress but the true test of them and Jurgen Klinsmann begins with World Cup Qualifying. Antigua & Barbuda should not give the US problems but Guatemala playing home should. When the US takes the field that night, the true tactical worth of Klinsmann will be shown.