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
Freddy shines in USA loss to Spain
by Mike Woitalla, June 5th, 2008 6:45AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED



On Wednesday in Spain, the USA matched the performances of 2006 World Cup champ Italy and runner-up France when they went to Spain earlier this year for friendly games. The USA lost, 1-0. The game extended Spain's undefeated streak to 16 games, but the Americans played an impressive first half in which teenager Freddy Adu demonstrated that he's ready to become a force on the national team.

Besides beating Italy and France, Spain's wins since the 2006 World Cup have included triumphs against England, Argentina and European champion Greece.

Against the USA, it was expected that the Spaniards, who are preparing for the European Championship, would keep the ball for themselves in this game. But that didn't happen so much until the second half, which Adu spent on the sidelines after he was replaced at halftime by DaMarcus Beasley.

Adu was paired upfront with Eddie Johnson and set up Johnson for a pair of prime scoring chances. One was negated by an offside call and on the other, a clever, long pass from the U.S. half, ended in an easy save from goalkeeper Iker Casillas when Johnson shot from a tight angle.

While the U.S. team as a whole offered a more spirited performance compared to its outing in the 2-0 loss at Wembley to England a week ago, Adu troubled the Spaniards and kept alive hopes of an upset.

But in the second half, the Americans had little possession and Johnson disappointed again when Eddie Lewis sent him a nice cross that Johnson headed wide from close range.

The USA's lack of offense in the second half was disappointing for sure. In the midfield, neither Clint Dempsey nor Beasley found paths down the flanks. Central midfielders Michael Bradley and Maurice Edu mostly served as extra central defenders with Oguchi Onyewu and Carlos Bocanegra.

Bradley, Bocanegra and Onyewu were all beaten by Xavi when he slalomed through the middle to strike Spain's gamewinner in the 79th minute. Before their goal, the Spaniards hit the crossbar and the post.

Bradley resorted too often to fouls, and as was the case with Edu, contributed little to the offense.

"In certain areas, I think there was improvement [from the match against England]," said U.S. coach Bob Bradley. "In the first half, I certainly felt that we passed the ball better. In the second half, we had a very good chance early on but we lost a little bit of energy and Spain was able to capitalize."

"I thought we stopped moving to support each other when we had the ball. [Cesc] Fabregas and Xavi started moving very well to find little gaps in our midfield. At that point, Spain was able to take advantage. They're a very good passing team."

The USA hosts Argentina in a friendly at Giants Stadium on Sunday. It opens qualifying play for the 2010 World Cup on June 15 when it meets Barbados June 15 in the first leg of their home-and-home series at The Home Depot Center. The second leg will be played on June 22 in Barbados

INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY
June 4 in Santander, Spain


Spain 1 USA 0.

Goal: Xavi (Fabregas) 79.

Spain -- Casillas, Capdevila (Navarro, 53), Marchena, Puyol, Ramos Cazorla, Hernandez, Xabi Alonso (Senna, 46), Silva (De La Red, 58), Torres (Guiza, 46), Fabregas (Arbeloa, 84).

USA -- Howard (Guzan, 46, Cherundolo (Hejduk, 46), Onyewu, Bocanegra, Pearce, Dempsey (Mastroeni, 86), Edu, Bradley, Lewis (Wolff, 70,) Johnson, Adu (Beasley, 46)

Stats Spain/USA
Shots 15/8
Saves 2/6
Corner Kicks 7/3
Fouls 8/15
Offside 1/2

Yellow Cards: USA - Bradley 77.

Referee: Sokol Jareci (ALB)

Attendance: 14,232



No comments yet.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Carolina RailHawks fan Howie Perl    
"You'd think if corruption at all touched the RailHawks, that they'd be really good and buying ...
Reports: High-powered lawyer presses NASL demands    
Sports attorney Jeffrey Kessler, who represented MLS players in the 1996 lawsuit against MLS, its owners ...
MLS Power Rankings: Galaxy stays on its perch     
The LA Galaxy, winner of four games in a row and eight out of its previous ...
O'Neill moves on to last-place Belgian club    
The deal by which Shane O'Neill left MLS for Cypriot club Apollon Limassol a month ago ...
NASL: Pinho's hat trick gives him scoring lead    
Brazilian striker Stefano Pinho is the hottest player in the NASL. He followed up on two ...
USL: OKC's Koenig ties league scoring record    
OKC Energy FC moved into first place and became the first Western Conference team to earn ...
What They're Saying: Caleb Porter    
"We're coaches, and we're all ambassadors for MLS and want the game to grow, and I ...
Video Pick: BWP's volley leads MLS golazos    
A diving header by Kevin Doyle (Colorado), sharp-shooting from Diego Fagundez (New England) and Andrew Jacobson ...
Nesta joins Maldini as head coach at Miami FC    
Miami is the home to retired Italian stars. It's been Paolo Maldini's second home for 15 ...
U.S. Abroad: Timothy Chandler needs knee surgery    
U.S, national team defender Timothy Chandler has been lost for the friendlies against Peru and Brazil ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives