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Torres injury 'not looking very good right now'
by Paul Kennedy, June 9th, 2012 1:48AM

TAGS:  men's national team, world cup 2014


[USA-ANTIGUA & BARBUDA] The USA got goals from Carlos Bocanegra, Clint Dempsey and Herculez Gomez, but that was it as it had to settle for a 3-1 win over tiny Antigua & Barbuda in the opening game of the semifinal round of 2014 World Cup qualifying.

The USA got bad news, though, as Jose Torres, playing in place of the injured Fabian Johnson and Edgar Castillo, was himself injured on an awkward challenge in the seccond half and had to be stretchered off with an ankle injury.

Torres will have X-rays on his ankle bruise and be evaluated over the weekend.

"It's not looking very good right now," said U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann.

Torres' replacement, Oguchi Onyewu, was at fault as Peter Byers, a veteran of the U.S. minor leagues, beat him for pace and scored to give Antigua & Barbuda its goal.

"We discussed that prior to the game that it would be difficult to break them down," said Klinsmann, who captured a win in his first career World Cup qualifier as a coach. "Antigua did a very good job defending and made it very tight. I think we created quite a few chances and we could have scored a few more goals. Those games are tricky. At the end of the day, I think the three points is the starting point that we wanted to have. We know that we have to step it up a lot going into Guatemala, which we will do. Overall, we give a complement to Antigua and a complement to the crowd of over 23,000 coming to the game. It was amazing. Now we've got to look toward Tuesday and we've got to give Guatemala a real fight."

June 8 in Tampa
USA 3 Antigua & Barbuda 1.
Goals: Bocanegra 8, Dempsey (pen.) 44, Gomez 72; Byers 65.
USA --
Howard; Cherundolo, Goodson, Bocanegra, Torres (Onyewu, 57); Edu, Bradley, Jones (Boyd, 81); Donovan, Dempsey, Gomez (Altidore, 80)
Antigua & Barbuda -- James; McCoy, Joseph, G.Dublin, Griffith; Burton, Leigertwood, Robinson, Murtagh (Byers, 62); Thomas (Smith, 83), Blackstock,
Referee: Hugo Cruz (Costa Rica).
Att.: 23,971.

  1. Bill Anderson
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 8:46 a.m.
    Oguchi Onyewu has been directly resposible for 4 of the last 5 goals given up by the US, and partly responsible for the 5th (bad clearance caused the corner kick). The more disturbing aspect is that the entire team's shape gets destroyed as they scramble to try and cover for his lack of pace and mobility.
  1. Robert Kiernan
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 9:17 a.m.
    Bill I fully agree with you on this, he is just more of a liability than an asset these days... and if we continue playing Boca out at LB the covering Centerback MUST have speed, or you wind up with a weak point in our defense that an opponent simply will concentrate their attack upon. Klinsmann must not be like his predecessor, sticking with the group of players who are his "First Stringers" if they are hurt or just not playing effectively... time to bring in another left back, ERIC LICHAJ would be my first choice, but we need at least SOME player who is a left sided Wingback with SOME speed and it needs to decided VERY VERY SOON... this is only for one match for now, but going to Guatemala without a LB is just insane... and Bocanegra can't make those runs over and over... this has to be decided TODAY!!! (ICE)
  1. Running Cloud
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 9:21 a.m.
    Gooch gets lots of match time in Portugal. Did he leave his game there, or is the Portugese league that bad? Whichever, his recent play shows he is past his pull date for USA duty. Going forward, who should replace him when the squad reconvenes following this set of qualifiers? Will Omar Gonzalez heal and sufficiently increase his experience before the fall? Will Tim Ream improve his game at the now-relegated Bolton? And then there's the mystery man -- mystery because he has never had a real shot at the USA squad. Zack Whitbread has certainly paid his dues in England. He's been a key part of Norwich's rise to the Premier and the Canaries' relative success in their first year of return to the top division last season. Whitbread, a product of the Arsenal youth system, was hurt late last season. If he's fit going forward, he deserves a shot at USA's iffy central defense.
  1. Running Cloud
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 9:30 a.m.
    Can Klinski call in new blood for Guatemala or is the squad now frozen for this set of qualifiers? Lichaj is first and foremost a right back. You want a left back at left back if possible. In an emergency, call Bornstein back -- assuming a callup is possible now. Whoever plays out left, it shouldn't be Bocanegra -- unless Klinski believes Cameron or Parkhurst can man the middle. Bottom line: no more Gooch. Cameron might be a possible left back. His midfield experience would be handy out there.
  1. Bob Escobar
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 9:41 a.m.
    Onyewu is terrible, if he is the "best" the USA can play in center defense, then we are doomed! Onyewu wouldn't even be able to play in my over 50 outdoor team, there are players in this over 50 faster and more skillful than this Onyewu guy! Klinsman should try a kid by the name of Gale Agbossoumonde (U23 USA National team), this kid is ten times better than Onyewu....Klinsman should give him a chance!
  1. Walt Pericciuoli
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 9:42 a.m.
    I can't figure out why Lichaj wasn't there already and R. Cloud,I agree, where is Whitbread on our depth chart as a central defender?Gooch should not see game time as a USNT player again.I mean,this was Antigua-Barbuda?Yes, we pounded them and a 3-0 score would have been understandable because it is tough to break a team down that just bunkers in the entire match. We controlled the match and with a little more luck, the score could have been 5 or 6 nil.If we had just seen it out with a clean sheet, I would have been satisfied. But how easily we gave up the goal and almost a second one really has me worried.
  1. Mike Gaynes
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 11:43 a.m.
    Yes, the Portuguese league is that bad, and yes, Gooch is done, sadly. It's obvious that knee simply won't let him play at anywhere close to his previous level, and it's time to send him home for good. Unfortunately it's too late to bring in Lichaj or Ream, and Cameron is just as slow as Gooch. Those of you calling for Whitbread, however, obviously haven't seen him play. There's a reason he hasn't been called in by the national team for years, and there's a reason he doesn't have a job right now. Put it this way, Ream is better. Way better.
  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 2:46 p.m.
    I went to and looked up the roster rules. It does appear that we could name some replacement players to our 23-man roster as long as we add them at least one day before the start of the game (if I read it properly). Here's the official quote regarding a list of 50 preliminary players for the tournament: "Further players may be any time but no later than the day before the qualifying match in question". The only time the list is locked is in the World Cup Finals. The list of 23 can only be changed prior to 24-hours before the kickoff of the team's first game. That requires a medical examination to prove the player is unfit (not just in poor form or for breaking curfew, etc...). A list of 30 possible players is due 30 days before kickoff. The Final 23 list is due 10 days before the teams first kickoff. For qualifiers I see no indication that the roster is locked. You just have to give everyone 24 hours notice to change the roster before a qualifying game.....
  1. Christopher Hallstrand
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 2:48 p.m.
    Get rid of GOOCH now!!! i cannot believe that we cannot develop or find anyone better in the back @ all 4 positions. What is the aggregate age back there 120?? Put Edu in middle, cannot be worse, Lichaj, even spector for that matter if we really need someone on the left. Give Cherundolo a very nice thank you for service well done and give him the boot. How are we going to use these back four in WC'14?? It would be a brutal embarrassment and if Klins thinks he is going to qualify with them and make a switch before the Cup he is insane!! Do it now in this group stage please. Also, watching just the first 3 games of the Euros is a refreshing view or soccer compared to what us US fans have had to watch these past few weeks.
  1. Running Cloud
    commented on: June 9, 2012 at 3:43 p.m.
    I watch far more Premiership matches than MLS matches. I've seen Whitbread play four or five times times and each time he has done his job well. Admittely, this is not an exhaustive scouting job. But he hasn't looked to be in over his head and he's definitely a better choice for the middle than Spector. And, like Christopher, I'm very concerned about the 2014 defensive setup.

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