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Donovan ranks at top of Gold Cup class
by Paul Kennedy, July 26th, 2013 1:08AM

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TAGS:  gold cup, men's national team

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[USA MEN] Landon Donovan has been the dominant player of the Gold Cup. He's the only U.S. player to start all five matches and his five goals and seven assists are more than the three goals and six assists he's had all season for the LA Galaxy in MLS play. He also leads all U.S. players with an average rating of 7.40 in Soccer America's Report Cards through five games.

Eddie Johnson
(7.00), Kyle Beckerman (6.75), Clarence Goodson (6.50) and Joe Corona (6.50) all follow with averages of 6.50 or higher. Nick Rimando follows at 6.25, while Jose Torres and Mix Diskerud, who have played in all five games, have averaged 6.00.

As a matter of comparison, only Matt Besler (7.25) has averaged higher than 7.00 among the players who have been rated in two or more games in the Hexagonal. Michael Bradley (6.67), Clint Dempsey (6.33), DaMarcus Beasley (6.25), Omar Gonzalez (6.17), Brad Evans (6.00) all have averages of 6.00 through the first six games of the final round of World Cup 2014 qualifying.

The highest average rating for the U.S. national team starters in a game at the Gold Cup was an average of 6.36 for Wednesday's 3-1 win over Honduras. They averaged 6.36 or higher in all four wins in the Hexagonal, reflecting the level of opposition they faced in those matches.

Gold Cup Team Ratings:
AVG. GAME
6.09 USA-Belize (6-1)
Report Card
5.45 USA-Cuba (4-1) Report Card
5.64 USA-Costa Rica (1-0) Report Card
6.23 USA-El Salvador (5-1) Report Card
6.36 USA-Honduras (3-1) Report Card
Note: Starting XI average.

Gold Cup Goalkeepers:
6.25 Nick Rimando (4 games played)
-------------------------
6.00 Sean Johnson (1 game played)

Gold Cup Defenders:
6.50 Clarence Goodson (4 games played)
5.75 Michael Orozco Fiscal (4 games played)
5.50 Matt Besler (2 games played)
5.50 Michael Parkhurst (4 games played)
5.25 DaMarcus Beasley (4 games played)
-------------------------
5.00 Tony Beltran (1 game played)
5.00 Oguchi Onyewu (1 game played)
5.00 Edgar Castillo (1 game played)

Gold Cup Midfielders:
6.75 Kyle Beckerman
(4 games played)
6.50 Joe Corona
(4 games played)
6.00 Jose Torres
(5 games played)
6.00 Mix Diskerud
(5 games played)
5.67 Alejandro Bedoya
(3 games played)
5.00 Stuart Holden
(4 games played)
5.00 Brek Shea (5 games played)

Gold Cup Forwards:
7.40 Landon Donovan
(5 games played)
7.00 Eddie Johnson
(2 games played)
5.80 Chris Wondolowski
(5 games played)
4.50 Herculez Gomez (2 games played)


41 comments
  1. Andy Wagner
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 8:05 a.m.
    Now try to accomplish this in a tournament against some real teams. This is the reason the US has never won a world cup...playing against high school caliber teams

  1. Eric Schmitt
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 9:14 a.m.
    Settle down, Andy. It's not like the US can choose their competition in this tournament. We'll see where it leads next summer.

  1. Luis Pena
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 9:33 a.m.
    I agree that the competition isn't as high compared to the Euro Cup or Copa America but this tournament is still valuable. This US team is mostly composed of players further down the depth chart and the way this team has played, they have shown that the US finally has some quality depth in all positions. It allows these players to have the experience of an international competition and allows chemistry to build while Klinsmann can see which players he can possibly use in the upcoming qualifiers. Winning the Gold Cup also provides them the opportunity to possibly play in the next Confederation Cup. The US has done well in a tournament with better teams. They finished second in the 2009 Confederation Cup.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 9:49 a.m.
    How pathetic it is, that a player who was out of the game for so many months (L. Donovan) comes back and it is still the best player for the USA!!!, this shows the level of the rest of the team. A player (L. Donovan) that is an average player in any other country around the world. Also he is overrated. Too many people thinks he is a great player, but in reality, he isn't. He is just good for the USA level of play, nothing else. Plus every single team in this competition SUCKS, which it makes the USA looks good, and then everybody thinks how wonderful this team is. This stereotype is very common at the HS and college level, a little better team, always beats all the weaker and terrible teams in their leagues and conference's, but this doesn't mean that such team it is much better that the rest of them, all what it is, is that they are just a notch better, which in reality doesn't mean anything in real competitions with much better teams. Also the American mentality, that a mediocre performance is always : A GOOD JOB!, this three words, are destroying this beautiful game in this country. We are promoting and accepting mediocrity, because we do not want to hurt somebody else feelings. Finally, the USA it isn't doing a good job, they are doing a mediocre job, a job that they must do it, because they are getting pay for it. Is time to wake up, it is time to confront the reality, and finally say it, not hide it !!!.

  1. John Vatianou
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 9:52 a.m.
    i think this competition is great. how cool is it that we can see the b-team in a competitive tournament? but also, how cool is it that the national team manager can evaluate the b-team in a competitive format? the rules change for confed. cup qualification instantly made this tournament valuable. i was a neigh-sayer originally, but not anymore. more tournaments only means the usa will improve in the log run. also to andy wagner, you're seriously deluding yourself if you don't think the usa will win the world cup in our lifetime. look at where the national league and the national team is in just 25 short years, since the 1990 wc qualification. sure, long way to go. but look already at the results on the world stage. once our best athletes start playing this sport, fuhget about it.

  1. Miguel Dedo
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 9:58 a.m.
    I hope that Andy and John do not show up where I plan to go to watch the final. It sounds as if they would be 'happier' at a funeral. I pity those who draw satisfaction from berating the qualities of others.

  1. Albert Harris
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:02 a.m.
    All I can say is that Andy and John must have played in one hell of a high school league if their opposition was better than what the USA is facing. Get a grip, fellows,,,lol

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:06 a.m.
    To Mike Finger (What a name!), the truth is always painful!. As I said, lets please do not hurt somebody else feelings, we can't do this in our country, be have to always say: God Job!!!, for your mediocre performance. This shows your mentality. This isn't berating nobody, it is just simply: Saying the truth. The truth, that our players do not want to hear.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:09 a.m.
    Yes, I will be there Mr. Dedo (Finger) and see if I can see you and tell this to your face, without any problem. To Albert: I never said anything about me playing in such HS league (Is call conference, by the way) that had the same level of the teams, the USA is playing. Please read well and see who wrote such thing.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:25 a.m.
    By the way, this is for Miguel Dedo and Albert Harris: This isn't my opinion or about my opinion, these are facts and logic!. Facts: 1. L.D didn't play for a while. 2. Comes back and is better that the rest of the team. 3. The other teams aren't that good. Logic: 1. Other players practiced all this time (L.D did not) 2. The other players aren't better that L.D 3. Even Mexico loses many games and they always have being a much better team that the USA in terms of international soccer. I am sure that there is more, but I strongly believe, this three points are crucial to the explanation of what it is really happening.

  1. Luis Pena
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:27 a.m.
    I don't see how this team has put on a mediocre performance. They are playing the most attacking and free flowing soccer that they have played in recent memory. Their main strength is still in the counter but we're actually going after the game instead of sitting back, waiting to win the ball. I understand that the quality of other teams such as Belize or Cuba isn't high but Costa Rica and Honduras have history of being in the World Cup and we lost to Panama in the group stages last Gold Cup. The way this team is winning these games is impressive and the fact that these aren't even the starters make it more impressive. We weren't winning against these teams like this using our A team before. It shows the progress the team has made. As far as Landon Donovan goes, I don't understand how after all he has done for the program, he still doesn't get the respect he deserves. He will be remembered as one of the best players to play for the US. He has helped grow the MLS, is the only player in US soccer history to have surpassed both 50 goals and 50 assists, and proved that he could play in the EPL with Everton. What more can you ask of him?

  1. Luis Pena
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:40 a.m.
    Your facts and logic don't add up. Landon Donovan has been playing for months in the MLS leading up to the Gold Cup. He was one of the best players on the A team so why would it be surprising that he is one of the best players on the B team after having time to regain his fitness? As far international competition goes, USA beat Mexico in A World Cup to advance to the quarterfinals, they only time they have played each other in a World Cup. If we look historically, Mexico has only ever made it to the quarterfinals while the US has finished in third place, granted it was in 1930.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:42 a.m.
    Que viva Landon Donovan!!!!, Landon Donovan for president!!!. He isn't a bad player, but for sure he is a mediocre player.

  1. Paul Stierle
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:47 a.m.
    My brother Kurt, who has played pro in his early years, and I have been critical of the USA and Klinsman. We have been shut up. It has been a sheer joy to watch so many joyful attacking games and creative in a row. That includes the b team or a team or whatever. We see a lot of depth. We said Germany's B team is going to wipe them out. Mexico's A team is going to show them up in Azteca. We won';t make next year's World up. Why are we punshing Donovan. Why not more Mexican/ americans. Why can't we score goals? Why can't Altidore? He should be dropped. The list goes on of our doubts. I must we are enjoying our NATIONAL team. The MLS players, the over the border [p;ayers, the over the sea players. And we may not win a game or two, but it is awesome!There have been some great highlights thru the years of beating Spain and going on to 2nd place of confederations cup. tying Mexico with ten men, Beating Brazil as Romario shakes Keller'e hand. And you can name some your self but this Gold Cup has been a consistent fun tournament to watch with lots of Goals now and some creative play from Donovan, who I critisized and many other players. And the quailfiers have been encouraging. Right now I have too many positives to say about our team. Enjoy it! Even if Pananma pulls an underdog thing, I will still sing of the victories in our country.

  1. Nye Allen
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:52 a.m.
    I agree with you, Luis Pena. In the past, our speed of play has been a liability, coupled with the inability to maintain possession and stage serious attacks. Even when we could place shots on goal, they were sorely wide or better suited for an NFL place kicker. But that was THEN. Currently, we have demonstrated a great ability to maintain possession (75% in most of the Gold Cup), beautiful passing combinations, great ball control, and amazing cohesion and chemistry. Our defensive attacks (while maybe on lesser opponents) use the 6 second Barca method - if you lose the ball, swarm and aggressively surround and attack the opponent and win the ball back, which has worked well for us. And exploiting opportunities - whenever weve had an opp to to SOG, we have finished at a higher %. Our wins have been decisive for the most part in Gold Cup. And this with a majority of B team players! I agree that we need to play against some higher competition, and that will come, but for now, the USMNT has played some amazing and consistent soccer. As for Mr Tenorio, please show some character in your discourse. Showing lack of respect and dishonoring another only reflects negatively on you.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:13 a.m.
    Dear Mr. Allen, I am not in any way disrespecting or dishonoring anybody. I am just saying the simple and cruel truth. Yes, lets lie and keep living in mediocrity. Please receive my apologies, for hurting you and anybody else feelings. The USA team is doing a good job, a great job as usual. Here they come the future World Cup Champions next year in Brazil!!!.

  1. Nye Allen
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:18 a.m.
    Well said Paul. I was a nay sayer of LD in the past b/c of his attitude, but he has shown some sincere maturity, humility, and strong leadership. I couldn't believe Grant Wahl's stupid question when he interviewed LD after the Costa Rica game (I think). "Is Landon Donovan back?" What a tool! LD's response showed great character and leadership. You don't get to 50+ goals and 50+ assists without being an amazing player. His ability to create scoring opps is amazing, whether it be him finishing or assisting one of his mates with a better opp. LD deserves much praise and respect. IMHO, LD is the greatest USMNT player of all time, and I don't say that lightly. As for the current nay sayers, let's wait and see what happens on Sunday against Panama and later as we face our competition in the World Cup. I have great expectations for this next one.

  1. Nye Allen
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:24 a.m.
    Mr. Smith, everyone is entitled to their opinion and I have the greatest respect for that. I was not offended and could care less about my feelings. Was just amazed at Tenorio's reference to denigrating someone's last name. These are comments and opinions about soccer and players. Let's keep it that way. Otherwise, those who lower the bar are only revealing their severe lack of character and self respect.

  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:27 a.m.
    Mr. Wagner, I hear your pain. And even though the Gold Cup is a mid-level tournament, one must be encouraged that the USMNT is finally keeping it simple and as a team shows more promise than it did last year. By the end of the year, the mediocre players will be weeded out and those that survive will have to maintain the simplicity of play and patience when faced with world class opposition at the WC stage.

  1. Ginger Peeler
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:48 a.m.
    Oh, well said Mr Neves! I see Mr Tenerio changed his name to Joe Smith. Obviously he's not a fan of the USMT, but they have been so much fun to watch during this tournament!!! Perhaps he should go back to watching his team of choice and let us continue to enjoy the advances the US men's team has made in their style of play and goals galore!!

  1. Ginger Peeler
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 11:50 a.m.
    Sorry, I meant Mr Allen.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 12:14 p.m.
    I am a fun of good soccer. Not mediocre soccer, thank you.

  1. Joe Smith
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 12:16 p.m.
    Sorry Ginger, what do you know about this wonderful game? Do you really understand it?, just wondering.

  1. Chris Sapien
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 1:07 p.m.
    Well said, Paul! Anyone who's best argument against our team is qualifying its success by downplaying the tournament/opponent, just has their own agenda. They care very little if the US ever wins the WC. That's just their line to try and suck you into their thinking.

  1. Paul Evans
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 1:22 p.m.
    The fact is that the US is ranked by FIFA at 22nd in the world. In this tournament Mexico is the only other country who even shows up in the FIFA world rankings (20th). There is no doubt that they are playing a lower level of competition and yet they are also playing without many of the first team players. The truth is that the US has won 10 straight, which they have never done, and this shows improvement and promise. Will this lead to a quarter final berth next summer in the World Cup? Maybe, maybe not. Time will tell but you could argue that this is the deepest the US team has ever been and there is no question that they have more momentum than they have ever had. It will be interesting to see how they finish out the qualifiers and I'm looking forward to watching them "compete" in the World Cup!!

  1. Paul Evans
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 1:28 p.m.
    To my above comment, sorry Costa Rica you did make the top 50 (39th).

  1. Ginger Peeler
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 1:48 p.m.
    Mr Tenerio/Smith...first you make fun of someone's name to justify your "superior" knowledge of the game; then you question my understanding of the game to try to bring me down to your level. Ive been subscribing to Soccer America for years (including years before they ever set up their web site). Of course I know what I'm talking about!

  1. JAY TEWS
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 2:03 p.m.
    Come on, comment on the game or the players, but leave the personal sniping out. Now: Great job, USMNT ! Yes, it has been against a lesser group of opponents, but it is what we have to work with and they have done a fantastic job! The B team is proving that they are ready to be inserted into the A team as needed. That is the idea of having a B team. Landon is clearly a world class player, look at his time at Everton.

  1. JAY TEWS
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 2:08 p.m.
    Klinsman has proved all of us doubters, wrong. The style of play and tempo is fun to watch! The proof will be in the World Cup, but considering our improvement up to this point I would say Bravo! In a perfect world we would be Playing Brazil, Spain, Germany,... every game, but this world is far from perfect, so enjoy the games we do get to play. Even our long balls have been proving effective...and I love the fact that we aren't relying on the long ball, but rarely.

  1. Steven McDonald
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 2:21 p.m.
    It seems too much is being taken from this tournament. A lot of hate on here for no reason. I have really enjoyed the matches but I am a realist and see that this USMNT B team is full of quite a few fringe A team players finally taking advantage of their opportunity to play. Kudos to Klinsmann on using this time to try and get some answers on these players. He has needed some of these guys to step up because the A team really needs help. Hopefully he will continue to make the right decisions. As for the competition Costa Rica and Honduras have both used their "B" teams and maybe C team players in the case of Honduras. For me I'm just going to enjoy it. We had 6 big screens on at Buff WW in Lake Worth Texas for the last match and some of it was during a Texas Rangers game. Now that's awesome.

  1. Paul Stierle
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 3:11 p.m.
    Yeah, Lets enjoy it. It is great to watch some good creative soccer. I like the way our team of 30 players or so are starting to blossom and Klinsman is meshing all our diversity mix like a good Pico De gallo. Should be exciting final. Even ex players like Wynaldo and Barton are enjoying them. I know its a buffet. So lets eat of it. Amen

  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 5:15 p.m.
    Klinsman is sly like a fox. He kept Donovan at arms length and kept him out of the WC Qualifiers so he could use him to dominate the Gold Cup. Had LD played the qualifiers, Arena would have made him, like Gonzalez, stay with the Galaxy until the Semifinals of the Copa Oro. Genius.

  1. Alex G. Sicre
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 5:53 p.m.
    Joe Smith? What is your real name? Your lack of proper grammar and spelling reveal that you are not of this country or England either. Go, Go, USA.

  1. John Soares
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 6:05 p.m.
    You judge AND rate a player based on how he/she performed in the last (few) games. Not on potential adversaries. If and when the USA/Donavon play those "more challenging teams". The ratings will reflect "that" performance. Until then; Great Job!!!

  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 6:16 p.m.
    Here's an interesting thought experiment. Play this US MNT against the USMNT that was just in the qualifiers. The Beas Brothers (Beasley and Besler) are a push since they played in both. I think this team stacks up favorably against the "Big Boys". Bradley and Jones might control the midfield over Holden/Beckerman/Diskerud but not without a major tussle (and Jones would have to get subbed out for picking up a yellow card early). Dempsey and Altidore versus Donovan and Johnson/Wondo would be pretty even too based on current form. I like Rimando for being assertive over Howard who sits back in his box too much and doesn't assert control over things. An interesting exercise. Think is Klinsman can actually have that match in the camp before the next WC qualifier. Use Castillo for Beasley and Orozco for Besler, and you've got the 22 for the game. I'd pay to see it!!

  1. Paul Roby
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 6:38 p.m.
    Mr. Smith, Donovan went to Everton, an established BPL side, during his off-season and made a difference for them. He is not mediocre. World's top ten? No, but definitely not mediocre.

  1. Chris Sapien
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 7:13 p.m.
    Not a bad idea Scott....I might even pay to see that!! Sad though, that Boca and Dolo wouldn't get a nod if healthy. Still feel we will need more experience/veteran guidance before too long in the back.

  1. Andy Wagner
    commented on: July 26, 2013 at 10:10 p.m.
    Why don't we play Panama in a snow storm in Colorado!

  1. Bill Anderson
    commented on: July 27, 2013 at 11:32 a.m.
    Congratulations to Coach Klinsmann for conducting the longest win streak in US history. Ten wins in a row is not enough, we need eleven. More importantly, congratulations to Coach Klinsmann for the complete makeover of our style of play. At the end of the last Gold Cup we were facing the prospects of being a bunker and whackit for the rest of time. Now, we are a team that possesses the ball at around 70% and is scoring multiple goals in multiple games against our bitter regional rivals and against European sides that are in great form. I was a huge Klinsmann advocate, and am even happier at this point in time than I could have ever imagined before his appointment.

  1. JAY TEWS
    commented on: July 27, 2013 at 4:14 p.m.
    I too would pay to see A vs. B teams. I think the middle would be over powered, but the forwards, in current form, is close to a toss up. And the back line is definitely a toss up without Cherundolo..Goal Keeper goes to Howard, not because of Rimaldo's form, but due to Howard's experience. I love the fact that we have some depth to have these thought experiments with!!! Love the STYLE!

  1. Aresenal Fan
    commented on: July 29, 2013 at 6:09 p.m.
    What is up with all the USA haters? regardless of competition level, they have been playing entertaining soccer. It can't be that bad, when Mexico did not even made the final. In regards to Donovon, his numbers speak for themselves, if his finishing would of been on, he might of had well over 10 goals. Donovon will still be one of our most dangerous attacking players once world cup comes around.


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