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Altidore: 'I'm not saying I'm Ronaldinho but ...'
August 14th, 2013 11:52PM

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TAGS:  men's national team

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[USA-BIH: Reaction] Jozy Altidore, whose hat trick gave him a national team record for goals in five straight games, said he and his teammates did not get down after trailing Bosnia-Herzegovina, 2-0, at the half. After the first U.S. goal, he said everyone was brimming with confidence and he was just happy he could play a part in the 4-3 comeback win.

U.S. forward Jozy Altidore:
On going down two goals and how the team responded:
"I think Jurgen has always said even if we go down a goal to keep responding. This time we went down two goals so it was a challenge for us. But I think you saw in the game we were never outplayed. It was just a matter of ironing out the mental errors, which we did, and we created a lot of chances."

On setting up Eddie Johnson's goal:
"I made a run and Michael [Bradley] picked me out. Eddie [Johnson], like a good striker, was around there and I touched it back for him and he got us on the board. From there, the guys were brimming with confidence and you saw that. I'm happy I could play a part in this good victory."

On the two free kicks he took, including his goal:
"I've been training the past couple of years and I'm not saying I'm Ronaldinho but I felt like I had it in me tonight. The first one I thought I hit decent, but it was a little close for me. The second one I got right. I was thinking just get it up and over and I'm happy I could score there."

On Aron Johannsson's debut for the U.S. Men's National Team and his impact on the match:
"I'm not surprised at all. Aron, over the past six months I was with him at AZ, you saw in training his ability to see passes and score goals and beat people so effortlessly. He's such a smart player and I'm so happy he chose the U.S. I think he'll be an asset going forward and I think he'll help us a lot."

On the 12-game winning streak:
"It's exciting and I think it shows how far the program has come. At the same time, we understand we still have to raise the bar. We can't afford to make mistakes [like the ones tonight] because in group stages of the World Cup you can't come back from them. We have to learn to iron those out but we take the positives from tonight and move forward with our head held high."

On the depth of the team moving towards next month's crucial World Cup Qualifiers:
"Everybody has confidence and tonight shows the depth we have in this team. Guys can step in at any time and put in a good performance. It makes us all better and demands the best out of each other. I think for the qualifiers we will look good."

U.S. defender John Brooks:
On his debut for the national team against Bosnia-Herzegovina:
“I’m really happy about the win against Bosnia. The team played really well and I think it’s a nice experience for me too. It’s always good when you can start your debut with a win. I’ve had a nice experience and I’ll bring stuff from here to my club.”

U.S. forward Aron Johannsson:
On his debut for the national team:
“It was very nice, very exciting. I was anxious the whole game to come in and show what I can do. I came in and I think I had a good influence on the game. Maybe I should have scored one goal but hopefully that comes the next game.”

On playing with Altidore, his former club teammate Jozy, and his performance:
“It was nice for him to come out here and score three goals. He was training free kicks yesterday and I was telling him there’s no chance he was going to come out here and score another one. But he came out, scored an incredible free kick and with three goals he’s clearly man of the match.”

On his first week with the national team:
“It’s been something special to come here and meet the guys. I’m the new guy in the group so I have to talk to the guys, be friendly and make friends.”

U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard:
On the victory:
“What a win. It was a tale of two halves. We didn’t play well the first half and the second half we were awesome. We deserved the win.”

On his save in the second half:
“It was just reaction really. I’m very fortunate when those come off because they look great but it was just the right place at the right time.”


14 comments
  1. Sidney Hall
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 8:26 a.m.
    Finally the MNT have begun to develop an aggressive Ameerican style, and are playing like we all want to see them play. OK, I know they still have a long way to go, but you've got to admit this is real progress. Giving up two very weak goals in the early stages of the game was very scary, and a lot of teams would have just hung their heads and given up. But they didn't, and you have to give them credit for not giving up and bringing it in the second half. JK has done a good job with these players, and lots of young unknown players are finally getting a shot at playing for the US. Bravo to the MNT, and to JK!!! :)

  1. Walt Pericciuoli
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 9:17 a.m.
    This is a team I really enjoy watching.Good team play style playing short passes for possession and then over the top when needed to break up the pressure.We're not afraid to attack, and after we score, we look for the next goal.Michael Bradley is the man. If he can mesh with Dempsey and Donovan when they are added to the mix,this will be an attack that will be feared around the world.Also,after seeing Johanssonn's debut, I believe he has the potential to add even more and may become that special player we've been looking for.Now let's keep going.

  1. Kevin Sims
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 11:39 a.m.
    I am heartened by the run of development. Players are improving. Altidore has exceeded my expectations, as have others. The streak is to be applauded, but we must keep perspective as well. Errors in defense we have seen must be cleaned up or we could take losses in Brazil that do not reflect the overall quality of play. Once again last night we yielded a goal while defenders watch ... with their hands in the air when they should be busting it to provide cover in the goalmouth and goal area. This repeated offense is criminal and will cost the USA dearly. My deep frustration with it stems from the repeated nature of the mistake and how easily is can be rectified with proper urgency at all times. Whereas attacking play takes huge amounts of time to develop with all of its nuances and subtleties and need for collective understanding, these defensive lapses are simple faults in concentration and effort. It will be very interesting to see the roster for Brazil and to see how the depth of talent will mesh together. It will also be very interesting to see what other new personalities arise over the next 10 months. GO USA!!!

  1. Paul Stierle
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 11:59 a.m.
    Kilnsman is not afraid to add new players into the roster and with that comes some adjusting and mistakes. His risk by playing 61 players has really paid off. When we lost to Honduras I was critical. In that game Gonzaeles was growing and there were some of those errors. But again this game proved crcial to adding some more players. Klinsman is growing our program and he stuck with Altidore and boy has it paid off BIG! Bradley is a general, add Donovan and Dempsey. Wow! Who to play will be our mood off critic next, thanks to Klinsman

  1. John Foust
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 12:02 p.m.
    Agree with Kevin on the defense focusing more on telling the officials of an offside than concentrating on breaking up opposing attacks. But more encouraging is the consistent intent to work the ball forward, starting from the back, rather than just blast a clearance every time. This is a significant attitude adjustment from 3-4 years ago, and their confidence in ball control is quite impressive (did anyone see any stats on possession?). Now for the actual ball-handling competency to match the confidence, and they'll be even more effective.

  1. Bret Newman
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 12:35 p.m.
    The USMNT has arrived at least offensively. JK has done to the.team what we all dreamed about. Not only are they holding possession, but they are dribbling by defenders. When you add Donovan and Dempsey our offense will be unstoppable. Now if we can shore up the defense. We do have to take into consideration, that wasn't our best defenders out there, and Bosnia is a very good team, especially offensively. Also I want to point out that Mix got fouled repeatedly, and should have got a ok. Ref swallowed his whistle a lot.

  1. Chris Sapien
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 2:12 p.m.
    Finally Bret someone mentioned Mix....I don't know what the referee was watching, but once Mix gets the shoulder in front of the defender and is attacking the same direction the ball is traveling, that was a PK all the way. Bravo to him for attempting to stay on his feet after the first shove, and at that point the ref could have played the advantage, but the second contact you have to call! (some might even argue he denied an obvious goal scoring opportunity and brought out the Red). As I mentioned on another article, time may be soon where we don't have to rely on a true #6 and can have both Bradley and Donovan play central midfield, with Dempsey left, Zusi right and Jozy/Eddie ready to send a missile through the defense or lay-off to our attacking middies!!! What a sight that might be!! Of course, all of that can only be realized with CDs and backs who can dominate and cover without fail.

  1. Alex G. Sicre
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 3:43 p.m.
    Looks to me like JKs experimenting is paying off. Glad to see it. Go USMNT.

  1. Millwall America
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 4:16 p.m.
    Things are falling into place. It's true Bosnia-H aren't Spain or Germany, but they are a legitimate top team (currently ranked 13th I think and in terms of their quality that feels about right). What was so great about this victory is that it didn't feel like a fluke. It wasn't a "park the bus and hope to snatch a lucky goal on the break" kind of victory. The USMNT went out to play a top international side head-on with an attitude of "may the best team win". IMO the US was the better side (at least last night and especially in the second half) and deserved the win.

  1. Andrew King
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 4:58 p.m.
    John, if you were wondering about the possession stats, it was 60% to 40%, USA

  1. Allan Lindh
    commented on: August 15, 2013 at 10:13 p.m.
    Agree with all the euphoria, but Bosnia-H did run in a lot of subs in second half. May not have been quite the same team that shut us down in first half.

  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: August 16, 2013 at 5:14 p.m.
    The way Johannsson can take guys on, anybody have thoughts about putting him out wide right to break down the defense and send crosses in.

  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: August 16, 2013 at 5:27 p.m.
    When BIH scored their goals I was commenting to meself that it was against the run of play. I felt we were getting the better of possession, although we weren't getting shots on goal at that point, we were having our way in the midfield. Also, when Jozy scored his first goal to tie the game it literally brought me out of my seat! That hasn't happened for a long time during a game.

  1. Chris Sapien
    commented on: August 16, 2013 at 6:42 p.m.
    I'll throw these two cents in Scott.......I knew we had goals in us during the first half, and the team did the critical thing at the start of the second........that being moving to 4-4-2, and scoring early!! On Johannsson, he would have to be given several opportunities and do well to unseat Zusi at this point in my mind. But would love to see some more size & depth out there for sure. Goal #2 brought me out of mine!! What a feed by Fabian!


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