After Colombia, it won't get any easier for the USA, thoroughly beaten by the Cafeteros, 4-2, on Thursday night in Tampa.
You just had to get a glimpse of Peru Friday night against Chile
at Miami's Hard Rock Stadium to see what the USA will be up against. Peru, which beat Chile, 3-0, doesn't necessarily have the big names Colombia has, but it will pose all kinds of problems for the
young U.S. defense with its attacking flair.
The pro-Peruvian crowd Tuesday night in East Hartford won't be as big as Colombia had in Tampa, but it will be just as passionate.
Here's what to look for ... 1. Guzan returns in goal.
With Zack Steffen
, the new No. 1
keeper, back in Columbus nursing his hamstring issue, Brad Guzan
will return on goal, making his first U.S. start in 13 months.
Guzan, 34, is one of the few veterans from the
national team that failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup who has a chance of enhancing his prospects of sticking around in 2019.
Guzan's Atlanta United enters the final two weekends of
MLS play in first place in the race for the Supporters' Shield. For other Couva holdovers in MLS, like Michael Bradley
, Jozy Altidore
and Kellyn Acosta
, their club seasons will
end on Oct. 28. 2. Other changes are also in the
Sarachan says he plans on making a number of changes.
"The game against Colombia was, for a friendly, a very high tempo game," he said on Monday.
"It's taken a few extra days to reassess where everybody's at. I was going into this game on Tuesday with the notion of making changes regardless, so we're still working through it."
Those changes could include Cameron Carter-Vickers
in the back, Wil Trapp
in midfield and Josh Sargent
at center forward. Three players in camp -- defenders Reggie
and Aaron Long
and teenager Jonathan Amon
-- are seeking their first caps. 3. Familiar faces will pose threats.
Peru, which played at the World Cup for the first time since 1982, started two MLS players -- Raul Ruidiaz
-- and brought on two others -- Andy Polo
and Yordy Reyna
-- against Chile. Alex Callens
, who plays for NYCFC, is expected to be the one change in the starting
lineup for Tuesday's game, replacing Anderson Santamaria
on the backline.
"We are very familiar with the players that are placed in Major League Soccer," Sarachan said. "Ruidiaz,
Yotun, Reyna, Polo -- high quality. Very similar in many ways to the team we just played in Colombia, where you have technical speed and quickness." USA Roster: Goalkeepers (2): AGE PLAYER (CLUB; GP/G) 34 Brad Guzan
(Atlanta United FC;
58/0) 23 Ethan Horvath
(Club Brugge/BEL; 2/0) Defenders (8): AGE PLAYER (CLUB; GP/G)
(Wolfsburg/GER; 35/3) 20 Reggie Cannon
(FC Dallas; 0/0) 20 Cameron Carter-Vickers
(Swansea City/ENG D2; 5/0) 25 Aaron Long
(NY Red Bulls; 0/0)
23 Matt Miazga
(Nantes/FRA; 10/1) 21 Antonee Robinson
(Wigan Athletic/ENG D2; 5/0) 27 Ben Sweat
(New York City FC; 1/0) 25 DeAndre Yedlin
United/ENG; 55/0) Midfielders (9):
AGE PLAYER (CLUB; GP/G)
23 Kellyn Acosta
(Colorado Rapids; 20/1) 19 Jonathan Amon
(FC Nordsjaelland/DEN; 0/0) 31 Michael Bradley
(Toronto FC; 141/17) 23 Marky Delgado
(Toronto FC; 4/0) 23 Julian Green
(Greuther Fuerth/GER D2; 13/4) 27 Fafa Picault
(Philadelphia Union; 2/0) 24 Kenny Saief
(Anderlecht/BEL; 3/0) 25 Wil
(Columbus Crew; 8/0) 18 Tim Weah
(Paris St. Germain/FRA; 6/1) Forwards (3): AGE PLAYER
22 Andrija Novakovich
(Fortuna Sittard/NED; 3/0) 18 Josh Sargent
(Werder Bremen/GER; 4/1) 25 Bobby Wood
(Hannover 96/GER; 42/12)
Note: In parentheses are caps and goals. Peru Roster: GOALKEEPERS (3):
Patricio Alvarez (Sporting
Cristal; 0/0), Jose Carvallo (Universidad Tecnica de Cajamarca; 6/0), Pedro Gallese (Veracruz/MEX; 45/0). DEFENDERS (8):
Luis Advincula (Rayo Vallecano/ESP; 72/1), Alex Callens (NYCFC;
10/1), Wilder Cartagena (Veracruz/MEX; 4/0), Nilson Loyola (Melgar; 5/0), Johan Madrid (Sporting Cristal; 0/0), Christian Ramos (Al-Nassr/KSA; 73/3), Anderson Santamaría (Puebla/MEX; 11/0),
Miguel Trauco (Flamengo/BRA; 33/0). MIDFIELDERS (8):
Pedro Aquino (Leon/MEX; 18/3), Horacio Calcaterra (Sporting Cristal; 3/0), Christian Cueva (Krasnodar/RUS; 52/8), Edison Flores
(Morelia/MEX; 35/9), Paolo Hurtado (Konyaspor/TUR; 35/3), Sergio Pena (Tondela/POR; 5/0), Renato Tapia (Feyenoord/NED; 35/3), Yoshimar Yotun (Orlando City; 79/2). FORWARDS (4):
Carillo (Al-Hilal/KSA; 52/6), Andy Polo (Portland Timbers; 18/1), Yordy Reyna (Vancouver Whitecaps; 19/2), Raul Ruidíaz (Seattle Sounders; 33/4). Note: In parentheses are caps
Oh, please, please, let’s not play the single forward again! I hate that lineup. Maybe when you’ve got a big player like an Altidore or a Wambach, but their times are past. Let’s see some forward skills on display. I’m really looking forward to Josh playing. He has already shown that he has that knack for being in the right place at the right time. That’s never seemed to be something players can learn, per se. they just either have it or they don’t...and most don’t. Now I just have to stay awake this time. Go USA!
I agree Ginger, we don’t have Drogba, nor the service to provide a single center forward. That’s one of the reasons we aren’t a prolific scoring side. Josh is an instinctual player and has two soft feet with which to finish or combine. Would like to see him paired with Novakovich or possibly Weah.
I would be starting Horvath in the nets. One of Guzans weaknesses, IMO, is his inability to command his box and defenders. I don’t see a confidence of our back three or four with him in the nets. I think if we are counting on or considering BG as we prepare for the two year qualification run, we are in trouble. For Brad and Michael, we equate age and caps as an automatic in the leadership/confidence category. That’s a myth. Leadership, inspiring confidence in others is a personality trait and I’ve never believed in either as having “IT.” Good luck tonight USMNT.
Execution is paramount, no matter what tacrtical game plan is utilized.
Ginger and WS, I have to disagree with you both if I take what you said literally. Strong attacking play requires wingers which is three forwards, not one. The "second" CF functionally can be a midfielder making a late run into the box. This is actually very effective at exploiting space in the box. It is actually equivalent to how a "second" striker plays.
Apologies, computer burped and cut off my reply. Here is the rest:
In my view this is pretty basic attacking play no matter what "formation" the team is nominally playing. I figure you know this so I assume I don't really understand what you mean by one forward, unless you are actually just referring to playing stupid. Formations may have one forward, but (even decent amateur) teams on the field never have just one player forward when attacking, regardless of what their nominal "formation" is.
Having Guzan in goal is a waste!!! What does this team get from that? This coaching situation is exasperating.
The team gets an experienced keeper sitting behind a relatively inexperienced back line.
I agree with all above. No Guzan, no Bradley, Weah and Sergeant up top. Or maybe Wood- he's almost the only one from the previous cycle I'd keep. (If Omar Gonzales ever plays in a US jersey again, I'd have a hard time supporting us.) Let's get as many youngsters out there- win or lose. Go US!
Hopefully they don’t play Robinson at left back again. Defensively he is just terrible, as he showed in the Brazil match and against Colombia. They need to find another role for him, if only to take advantage of the threat he poses going forward. We need to find other options at left back.
I agree on the 4-2-3-1. Wood and Sargent are not “classic” #9s who can play back-to-goal and present a target. Maybe (big maybe) that works with Altidore, but no one else. A coach should adjust based on the players he puts out there.
I don't consider "target" forwards as classic. I consider them as a crutch teams use to penetrate when their midfielders lack ball skills.
I would like to see 3 attackers up front, of which 2 are flank players. I would like to see Saief as one of the flank players, No Wood, but try Sargent in middle ,up front with the other flank Weah, or Novakovich or even Wood on the flank. Just see what happens!!
Bob, what purpose does playing Guzan do for this team in, this game? He is the least talented keeper that has been a semi regular part of this program since before Tony Meola. Taking minutes away from anyone else is a waste.