Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
U.S. exercise at the Copa America ends pointless
by Ridge Mahoney, July 6th, 2007 7AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  copa america, men's national team, mls

MOST COMMENTED

gomezA tough, rugged game against Colombia in which four U.S. players made their first Copa America appearance produced promising moments but nothing more than a 1-0 defeat and an 0-3 record in the competition.

Finishing pointless in the standings is also how the entire exercise of taking a young, largely inexperienced team to so prestigious a competition will be deemed: pointless. Still, in this match Charlie Davies and Lee Nguyen displayed verve and skill, Sacha Kljestan, Drew Moor and Bobby Boswell weren't overwhelmed, and Braz Guzan saved a penalty kick after committing the foul that yielded it. All came into the game with fewer than three caps.

But a sputtering, wheezing U.S. attack - with forwards Eddie Johnson and Herculez Gomez wandering aimlessly -- blighted the first hour of the match. Davies and Nguyen arrived and clicked with Kljestan, Ricardo Clark and Kyle Beckerman, but attempts to establish tempo often died in a morass of midfield collisions. Eddie Gaven replaced Gomez at halftime and did virtually nothing of consequence.

The teams combined for 32 fouls and seven cautions, though two were for time-wasting by keeper Robinson Zapata (how's that for a name). His dismissal in the 87th minute forced striker Hugo Rodellega to don the keeper's jersey and gloves, as Colombia has used its three subs.

Jaime Castrillon overpowered Moor to head Camillo Zuniga's cross for the only goal, but Moor blunted other dangerous situations with bad-ass tackles in the penalty area despite having been cautioned in the second minute. He and left back Heath Pearce tried to get forward but not until Davies and Nguyen cranked up the energy and opened up some space were they able to contribute offensively.

Nguyen also supplied the best defensive play of the night, save for Guzan's penalty save. After taking a free kick in the attacking third, Nguyen raced back as Colombia counterattacked and repelled a Andres Chitiva centering pass over the crossbar with a sliding clearance at the edge of the six-yard box. A world-class play, all the way.

Kljestan conjured up the best U.S. scoring chance by clipping a clever ball first-time over the Colombian back line for Davies to race onto. The bounce escaped Davies yet he tracked the ball down as Zapata scrambled out and fed it to Johnson on the left flank. With the keeper out, Johnson dawdled before looping a cross or shot a yard or two past the far post. Same old, same old.

Guzan dove to his right to block Rodellega's penalty kick that the Colombian had earned after racing onto a through ball and being tripped by Guzan's lunge.

Several U.S. set plays presented opportunities but yielded only a Kljestan header over the crossbar, and nothing of real danger.
Beckerman put the ball in the net with a few minutes remaining after a loose ball had been poked to him past three defenders by Davies, but properly, up went the flag for offside.

Rodellega had no trouble preserving the shutout despite the whirlwind work of Davies and Nguyen. In stoppage time, Moor heroically fended off a determined effort by Mario Yepez as the powerful left back tried to muscle in a second Colombian goal.

GROUP C SUMMARIES:
July 5 in Barquisimeto
Colombia 1 USA 0. Goal: Castrillon 15.
Colombia -- Zapata, Yepes, L.Perea, Arizala, Zuniga, Banguero, Castrillon, Viafara (Marin, 55), Torres (Ferreira, 85), Rodallega, Valoyes (Chitiva, 78)
USA -- Guzan, Moor, Boswell, Pearce, Califf, Clark, Mapp (Davies, 64), Beckerman, Kljestan, Johnson (Nguyen, 71), Gomez (Gaven, 46).
Yellow cards: USA -- Moor 2, Kljestan 32, Mapp 55; Colombia -- L.Perea 42, Zapata 71, Valoyes 78, Zapata 87.
Red card: Colombia -- Zapata 86.
Referee: Manuel Andarcia (Venezuela).
Att.: 38,000.

July 5 in Barquisimeto
Argentina 1 Paraguay 0. Goal: Mascherano 79.
Argentina -- Abbondanzieri, Ibarra, Burdisso, Diaz, Zanetti, L.Gonzalez (Mascherano, 67), Gago, Cambiasso (Messi, 67), Aimar (Ayala, 85), Palacio, Tevez.
Paraguay -- Bobadilla, Veron, Caceres, Manzur, Vera, Torres, Santana (Santa Cruz, 81), E.Gonzalez, Dos Santos (Barreto, 69), Cuevas (Lopez, 58), Cabanas
Referee: Jorge Larrionda (Uruguay)
Att.: 38,000.

 



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
U.S. U-23s fall to England's Young Lions, 1-0    
A goal by Manchster United's James Wilson in the 72nd minute gave England's U-21s a 1-0 ...
Dunn honored after getting Washington into NWSL playoffs    
The Washington Spirit's Crystal Dunn, who is running away with the NWSL scoring race, was voted ...
Breaking: Bundesliga will debut Sept. 13 on Fox    
The German Bundesliga will air for the first time on network television Sept. 13 when the ...
WCQ: Nowak leads Benna Boys against Guatemala    
The third and final knockout round of World Cup 2018 qualifying begins in Concacaf with six ...
Scouting Report: U.S. vets set for return against Peru    
The USA plays Peru Friday night in the first of two friendly games as it prepares ...
NASL Roundup: Freddy Adu ready to play again    
Freddy Adu's hopes of finding his stride at the 12th club of his professional career haven't ...
MLS: Best of August    
A memorable brother act and yet another superb double-save highlight the best moments from the games ...
What They're Saying: Charlie Stillitano    
"I really think they're true friendships. When a manager comes to my house for dinner, they ...
What They're Saying: Jurgen Klinsmann    
"Yes, we fear and don't know. Since they arrested people, things are very questionable with UEFA, ...
What They're Saying: Whitworth athletic director Tim Demant     
''As a Christ-centered university that believes in the value of all individuals, we are seeking to ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives