[USA 30] U.S. national team coach Bob Bradley is usually adverse to discussing the conversations he has with his players, but in light of Charlie Davies' stinging criticism of Alexandre Lacombe, president of French club Sochaux, following his exclusion from the U.S. provisional squad, Bradley shared some advice he had given Davies.
Bradley said the conversation took place in February -- more than three months after Davies was seriously injured in a car accident. Bradley described the talk as a "father conversation or a big brother conversation." He said he told Davies that having a strong mental approach was going to be important but that saying little was also going to be critical.
"[I] also said," Bradley said, "'If you can find a way to work and put everything into it and maybe not have so much to say, I think it would work for you. Because you don't want to put yourself in a position that you're making all this progress and yet somehow it seems like a failure because the timing just doesn't coincide with the World Cup. What's most important is that you can still get yourself back to the level that you were playing before the accident.'"
Davies spoke regularly to the media about how he felt about his progress and also provided updates on Twitter. (He's only tweeted once in the last six days since the USA 30 was announced.)
After the U.S. roster was released, Davies went on former French star Luis Fernandez' talk radio show "Luis Attaque!" on RMC and criticized Lacombe, who said several weeks before the end of the French season that Davies would not be playing for Sochaux again this season without, according to Davies, consulting with him or the team's coaches or doctors.
Bradley said he and his staff were aware of how far Davies had come along in his rehabilitation -- and how far he had to go.
"We knew exactly what it looked like in training," said Bradley. "[U.S. national team trainer] Ivan Pierra was there at one point. I saw video of it at training. So we put it all together and we recognized that Charlie has put, up until now, and will need to continue to put, a tremendous amount of work into his rehab, and we're all there supporting him."