[USA-SPAIN REPORT CARD] Luis Gil scored a golazo and marshaled a U.S. midfield that took the game to the Spaniards, but the U.S. defense proved
porous in Spain's 4-1 win in opening play at the U-20 World Cup. Soccer America's Mike Woitalla grades the U.S. players in their loss against the title favorite.
A normal result for a Spanish national team came in unusual fashion as the USA prevented the Spaniards from establishing their dominant possession game. Instead, La Rojita crushed the Americans with counterattacks.
That they so frequently kept the ball after winning it will please Coach Tab Ramos, but he’ll be seeking solutions to an overwhelmed defense, which welcomes back suspended Shane O’Neill for Monday’s game against France.
Spain’s goals looked too easy against the central defensive
partnership of Caleb Stanko and Javan Torre. Right back DeAndre Yedlin lost Jese on the opening goal but Yedlin did make promising forays, as did
left back Juan Pablo Ocegueda, to a lesser extent.
In the midfield, Wil Trap and Benji Joya played behind Gil and Danny Garcia. Alonso Hernandez, who missed a golden chance to equalize early in the first half, played upfront with Jose Villarreal.
USA PLAYER RATINGS
5 Cody Cropper (Southampton/ENG)
5 DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders)
4 Caleb Stanko (Freiburg/GER)
3 Javan Torre (UCLA)
4 Juan Pablo Ocegueda (Guadalajara/MEX)
5 Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew)
5 Benji Joya (Santos/MEX)
7 Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake)
6 Danny Garcia (FC Dallas)
5 Jose Villarreal (LA Galaxy)
4 Alonso Hernandez (Monterrey/MEX)
4 Mario Rodriguez (Kaiserslautern/GER)
4 Daniel Cuevas (Santos/MEX)
5 Mikey Lopez (Sporting KC)
(1=low; 5=average; 10=high.)