US MEN Advance to Final 4 on Nations League
So the US men did what they had to do this last week to secure the expected first place finish in the CONCACAF Nations League after pounding Canada at home 4-1 before defeating Cuba 4-0 in a neutral site game on Tuesday night. Some good things we saw was a solid defensive effort led by Aaron Long and John Brooks in the middle. Sergio Dest put in a solid game on the right side vs Canada – as he flew up and down the wing and actually provided our first assist. Tim Ream continued his captaincy playing the left side vs Canada before moving to the middle (his more natural position) vs Cuba. He continues to show ability to pass out of the back under pressure – combined with his defensive efforts in the air, are certainly valuable especially against CONCACAF sides. He’s still a starter for Fulham in the English Championship and it shows.
EPL & World
Wow Tottenham – really? Mourinho for Pochitno? Hard to believe – the Spurs have taken this move now – but they pulled the trigger earlier this week. I for one don’t see it working – Jose will call out his players, turn the top players against him and have this team flailing just outside top 4 if you ask me. He certainly doesn’t have the money – in the winter window to buy players – which is what he normally does. As for big games this weekend none is bigger than Chelsea vs Man City this Saturday at 12:30 pm on NBC. US star Christian Pulisic is expected to play after resting his injury over the 10 day international break. The American has notched 5 goals and 2 assists in his last 3 league games. Other EPL games of note have Mourinho and Tottenham heading to West Ham at 7:30 am on NBCSN Saturday followed by Liverpool traveling to Crystal Palace without Mane at 10 am on NBCSN. In Germany American’s Mckinney (Schalke) and Stuart for Werder Bremen will faceoff at 9:30 am on Fox Sports 2 or Fox Soccer while US GK Steffan and dMid Morales of Dussledorf will host Bayern Munich at 9:30 on Fox Sports 1.
Carmel FC Goalkeeper Coach Jordan Farr Returns to Indy 11 for 2020 Season!
Fantastic news that Carmel FC Director of Goalkeeping Jordan Farr is returning for his 3rd season for the Indy 11 next season! Jordan started the final 5 games of the season and helped lead the Indy 11 to the Eastern Conference Finals. In 12 combined USL Championship regular season and playoff games (10 starts), Farr registered an impressive 0.66 goals against average (seven goals allowed in 956 minutes), while notching a 7W-1L-2D record and five shutouts – including clean sheets in both of Indy Eleven’s 1-0 wins during postseason play.We look forward to having Jordan back coaching our Carmel FC goalkeepers again this spring!
GAMES ON TV
Sat, Nov 23
7:30 am NBCSN West Ham vs Tottenham
9 am ESPN+ Atalanta vs Juventus
9:30 am Fox Sport 1 Dusseldorf (Morales & Steffan) vs Bayern Munich
9:30 am Fox Soccer Schalke (Mckinney) vs Werder Breman (Stuart)
10 am NBCSN Crystal Palace vs Liverpool
12:30 pm NBC Man City vs Chelsea (pulisic)
3 pm beIN Sport Real Madrid vs Real Sociadad
Sun, Nov 24
9 am beIN Sport Monaco vs Bordueaux
11:30 am NBCSN Sheffield United vs Man United
12 noon FS1 Hoffenhiem vs Mainz
Mon, Nov 25
3 pm NBCSN Aston Villa vs New Castle (Yedlin)
Tues Nov 26
1 pm TNT Galatasaray vs Club Brugge
3 pm fuboTV Juventus vs Atletico Madrid
3 pm Man City vs Shaktar
3 pm TNT Real Madrid vs PSG
Wed, Nov 27
1 pm TNT Valencia vs Chelsea (Pulisic)
3 pm TNT Liverpool vs Napoli
3 pm fuboTV/BRLive Barcelona vs Borussian Dortmund
3 pm RB Leipzig vs Benefica
3 pm Genk vs Salzburg (US Coach)
Thur Nov 28
11 am BRLive/fuboTV/TUDN Astana vs Man United
3 pm BRLive/fuboTV/Unimas Arsenal vs Eintracht Frankfurt
Fri Nov 29
3 pm FS2 Schalke (McKinney) vs Union Berlin
Sat, Nov 30
7:30 am NBCSN New Castle (Yedlin) vs Man City
9:30 am Foxsoccer Hoffieheim vs Dusseldorf (Morales & Steffan)
9:30 am Fox Soccer Hertha vs Dortmund
10 am?? Liverpool vs Brighton
10 am NBCSN Chelsea (pulisic) vs Westham
3 pm beIN Sport Real Madrid vs Real Sociadad
Sun, Dec 1
9 am NBCSN Norwich vs Arsenal
11:30 am Man United vs Aston Villa
11:30 am NBCSN Leciester vs Everton
12 noon FS1 Wolfsburg vs Werder Bremen (Stewart)
12 noon ESPN News Napoli vs Bologna
3 pm beIN Sport Atletico Madrid vs Barcelona
Wed, Dec 4
2:30 pm NBCSN Man United vs Tottenham
2:30 pm ??? Chelsea vs Aston Villa
3:15 pm ?? Liverpool vs Everton
Does the U.S. have a leadership problem? 8hNoah Davis
No Consistantcy with this US Squad – Leander Schaelaeckens – Yahoo Soccer
Some Ajax teammates ‘didn’t like’ Dest’s U.S. choice
US, Canada U-20s learn qualification path for 2021 World Cup
Local College NCAAS
Hard to See how Mourinho will help Spurs before a messy Ending –
PL Preview: Can anyone put pressure on Liverpool?
Pochettino leaves emotional whiteboard message to Spurs
Mourinho seeks quick fix to win over Spurs doubters
Below are the 10 goalkeepers shortlisted for the 2019 Yachine Trophy:
- Andre Onana (Cameroon/Ajax)
- Wojciech Szczesny (Poland/Juventus)
- Jan Oblak (Slovenia/Atletico Madrid)
- Kepa Arrizabalaga (Spain/Chelsea)
- Samir Handanovic (Slovenia/Inter Milan)
- Hugo Lloris (France/Inter Milan)
- Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Germany/Barcelona)
- Alisson Becker (Brazil/Liverpool)
- Ederson (Brazil/Manchester City)
- Manuel Neuer (Germany/Bayern Munich)
Hard to see how Jose Mourinho will help Spurs before the inevitably messy ending
For the fourth time in his career, Jose Mourinho has been hired for a Premier League job. On Wednesday, Tottenham Hotspur installed the Portuguese in his ninth managerial position, following the instantly controversial sacking of Mauricio Pochettino on Tuesday.Mourinho’s English appointments trace the arc of his much-discussed career, spanning from the cocky-yet-charming managerial prodigy upon his first appointment at Chelsea in 2004, to his return in 2013 as a highly decorated manager, to his 2016 arrival at Manchester United as both a three-time Premier League champion and damaged goods, to, now, a point where his signing by Spurs is widely considered a huge risk.It is, any way you look at it, a strange marriage. Mourinho, somehow still only 56 and out of work for almost a year since his December firing by United, might well be the most divisive manager in the sport’s history. His personal trophy case is inarguable: three Premier League titles; two Serie A titles; a La Liga title; two Champions League trophies; two UEFA Cup or Europa League trophies; eight domestic cups. The thing is, Mourinho has provoked as many crises and skirmishes and meltdowns as he has won prizes. And you don’t get one without the other.So for Spurs, of all teams, to hire him under the rule of the ever-sensible, risk-averse chairman Daniel Levy, feels like an odd fit. But there are other pressing and worrying considerations.The downturn in Pochettino’s last eight or so months in charge – the miraculous run to the Champions League final very notably excepted – was much to do with a widespread fatigue among the players, who slumped to their present 14th place in the league. Pochettino was a demanding manager, imposing a strict and imposing playing system. There is a habit among soccer teams to vacillate between opposites in your managerial hires. After the disciplinarian, you go with the nice-guy players’ manager to give the players a fresh experience. And then the cycle resets. Yet Mourinho is no less demanding than Pochettino, albeit in different ways. Rather than a dogmatic, Marcelo Bielsa-inspired high press, Mourinho applies something antithetical, a sort of reactive non-press. But he drains his players in different ways. Mourinho creates a culture of perpetual tension through instigation and conflict. That might not work particularly well on players who appear to be burned out as it is, while many of them were already itching to leave the club. What’s more, Mourinho relies heavily on massive investment in his teams to solve problems, rather than developing existing players or ushering in academy products – although Mourinho has always disputed this reputation of ignoring youth, even if the stats clearly support it.“The quality in both the squad and the academy excites me,” Mourinho said in a statement. “Working with these players is what has attracted me.” Yet historically, that’s not what he has actually ever done. It could be that he may have evolved during his time away from the game, mostly spent doing TV punditry in England, but that feels unlikely when you consider that Mourinho has replicated the same playbook everywhere he’s gone – until it stopped working, and then simply did it all over again someplace new. Mourinho would arrive, demand heavy spending on new players, foster urgency in a pressure-cooker environment, win a few major trophies, and move on when it all blew up.But at Spurs, the institutional lack of investment in players drove Pochettino to despair – and it’s likely that the failure to refresh the squad caused its steep decline. It’s doubtful that Mourinho got concessions from Levy that he denied his predecessor. Taken together, it’s hard to see how any of this ends very happily. Mourinho doesn’t give you happy endings. He gives you a few highs and then a crash. And maybe that’s the plan. One of the many things that jarred about Pochettino’s firing is that the timing was so awkward – toward the end of an international break with almost no qualified managers available. But then maybe this is a short-term play. Veteran regulars Christian Eriksen, Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen all have expiring contracts. Perhaps hiring Mourinho is a last-ditch attempt to win something with a splendid, carefully cultivated squad before it inevitably breaks up.Because the only structural problem Mourinho will solve in short order is the erosion of intensity. He isn’t a long-term solution because he doesn’t do the long term. He’s a fresh face, yet a familiar one.“In Jose we have one of the most successful managers in football,” Levy said in the statement. “He has a wealth of experience, can inspire teams and is a great tactician. He has won honors at every club he has coached. We believe he will bring energy and belief to the dressing room.”Belief? Perhaps. Energy? Sure. But what kind, exactly?Leander Schaerlaeckens is a Yahoo Sports soccer columnist and a sports
Soccer-Fit-again Pulisic available for Chelsea against Man City
Reuters 11 minutes ago
Nov 22 (Reuters) – Chelsea’s in-form forward Christian Pulisic has shaken off a hip problem and will be available for Saturday’s Premier League game at Manchester City, manager Frank Lampard said on Friday.Pulisic sustained the injury in Chelsea’s 2-0 Premier League victory over Crystal Palace earlier this month and missed the United States’ CONCACAF Nations League matches against Canada and Cuba during the international break.The 21-year-old former Borussia Dortmund player has been in superb form for third-placed Chelsea after a slow start to his career at Stamford Bridge, scoring five goals in his last three league matches.”He didn’t go (to the U.S. camp), he was struggling against Palace. He has been training and is in contention,” Lampard told a news conference on Friday.Winger Callum Hudson-Odoi is a doubt for the match due to a hamstring issue he picked up on international duty with England.Lampard said that he was pleased with the understanding between his midfielders N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic with all three players fit and playing well ahead of the clash with the defending champions.”I want it to be a positive issue… it is great for me. It is something we have done pretty well. We have had fluidity in our midfield. We can use them all collectively,” Lampard added.”You have to give Jorginho the freedom to leave his position. He has a perception for the press.”Former Chelsea midfielder Lampard, who ended his Premier League career with a season at City, said he was looking forward to facing City who are one place below his side.”The levels they have reached have been incredible. For us to be in that position, I am pleased with. But I want more,” Lampard added.”It’s not the end story, they are a strong outfit. I won’t make huge judgements on tomorrow, our story is three months in the making.
Chelsea-Manchester City Preview
The Associated Press 11 hours ago
For all the talk of Manchester City’s relentless offence, their hopes for a third consecutive Premier League title as well as any silverware they may add to their collection this season could hinge on the guy who prevents goals rather than scores them.Ederson could make his return between the sticks for the Cityzens in a top-four crunch encounter with Chelsea at the Etihad on Saturday.The Brasil international has been sidelined since suffering a muscular injury in the first half of City’s 1-1 draw versus Atlanta in Champions League play on Nov. 6. It kept him out of their 3-1 loss to Liverpool before the international break four days later, a defeat that dropped Manchester City (8-1-3) nine points behind the table-topping Merseysiders and into fourth place behind both Leicester City and Saturday’s opponents Chelsea (8-2-2).
Ederson returned to practice this week, though manager Pep Guardiola has yet to confirm if he will reclaim his spot from deputy Claudio Bravo. Ederson is not the only City player tipped to make a return, as midfielder and playmaker David Silva and holding midfielder Rodri are also potential inclusions into the first XI.Another part of the defence still in flux is in the spine, where Fernandinho has been deployed as Aymeric Laporte continues to recover from a knee injury. The 35-year-old had been City’s linchpin in midfield but is making the adjustments to form a partnership with John Stones.”I feel good,” Fernandinho said of his new position to the Manchester Evening News. “Of course, I have the help of my teammates and manager. It’s been great for me, trying to do my best as always since I signed for City.”Sometimes you feel you have to improve a little bit – but that’s beauty of football. You can. Every morning, you can make it happen.”City forward Sergio Aguero looks to continue his stellar strike record versus Chelsea. The Argentina international has 13 goals in 17 matchups versus the Pensioners in all competitions, which includes his time with Atletico Madrid, and had a hat trick in the most recent league meeting when City smashed six past Chelsea without reply at the Etihad in February.”In terms of an out-and-out goalscorer, Aguero is the best I played with,” Chelsea boss and one-time City midfielder Frank Lampard told SkySports in 2017. “He can be quiet for much of the game and then he’ll score the winning goal. He’s lethal around the box.”Lampard, though, has a few goal-scorers who could eventually realise a level similar to Aguero at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea have won six on the spin in league play, and their 27 goals trail only fellow top-four sides City (35), Liverpool (29), and Leicester City (28).
Tammy Abraham has shown his scoring prowess at the Championship level can transfer to the top flight, pacing the Pensioners with 10 goals in league play – putting him joint-first with Jamie Vardy for the Premier League lead — and 11 overall. U.S. international Christian Pulisic also went into the break in fine form with all five of his league goals coming in the last three wins.Pulisic, though, is a question mark for this game with a hip injury that also prevented him from crossing the Atlantic to play for the U.S. during the international break.Despite the impressive string of results, Lampard has yet to record a signature Premier League victory. Chelsea have lost their two matches against fellow Big Six sides Liverpool and Manchester United, while one of their two draws came against surprise package Leicester City.The sides split their league matches last term, with Chelsea recording a 2-0 victory before City hammered them in the return encounter. Guardiola’s side won the rubber match on penalties after a scoreless 120 minutes in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley.]Raheem Sterling converted the winning penalty in the fifth round after a bizarre incident towards the end of extra time in which keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga defied then-manager Maurizio Sarri’s bid to sub out the keeper as he was dealing with cramps. Arrizabalaga did make one save during the shootout, but it was not enough to prevent City from completing the first leg of an unprecedented domestic treble.Chelsea have just two wins in their last 11 visits to the blue side of Manchester (2-1-8) after going 10-1-1 in the first 12 of the Premier League era.
Does the U.S. men’s national team have a leadership problem?
11:42 AM ETNoah DavisESPN
Winning a soccer game requires two things: an off-field plan and on-field execution. The first part is a coaching challenge; the second is one for the players, who need to prevail in dozens of individual battles all over the field.Against Canada in October, the United States men’s national team had the first in head coach Gregg Berhalter’s much-discussed “system” but failed in the latter. All over the field, the Americans lost to their northern opponents in specific moments. There were obvious failures, such as Alphonso Davies‘ outworking Aaron Long and DeAndre Yedlin to the back post to tap in Canada’s opener, and subtler ones, such as 50-50 ball after 50-50 that went to the Maple Leafs. The result was a 2-0 loss, the first since April 1985, a frustrating and lackadaisical effort too reminiscent of many lost matches under Jurgen Klinsmann.Defeats are excusable. Not showing up isn’t.After the match, Berhalter noted as much. “We need to compete on every single play in games like this,” he said. “I don’t think it was lack of effort. I don’t think it was purposeful, but I wasn’t happy with the desire we displayed tonight to win the soccer game. Too many 50-50 balls we lost, and that hurt us.”Trying hard is an intangible thing, tough to measure with stats but obvious enough to teammates. Is a player giving everything, the proverbial 110 percent, or is he slacking? More importantly, who will hold accountable a player who isn’t? Doing that requires strong leadership, an individual willing to say the unpleasant truth and get results. For too long, the American team has lacked this person.”We’ve been waiting for this leader to step into the role,” said Jay DeMerit, a former U.S. captain who knows something about leadership.So far, Berhalter seems to be searching for a leader. Although his Columbus Crew captain, Wil Trapp, got the armband eight times in the U.S.’s 11 2018 matches, Berhalter has picked 10 players across 18 games in 2019. The list is long and varied. Tim Ream leads with six times as captain; Aaron Long, Zack Steffen and Christian Pulisic have done so two times; Trapp, Yedlin, Michael Bradley, Matt Miazga, Omar Gonzalez and Weston McKennie have each gotten it once. This is, at least in part, by design.”The group has done a good job of sharing leadership,” the coach said in a news conference before the Canada fixture. “When I think about meetings we have, there’s not two players that speak up. There are probably 15 players that speak up. When we analyze video or talk about team goals or talk about expectations, it’s by committee … For us, it’s been refreshing. There’s not two guys talking and the rest being quiet. It’s many guys sharing leadership, and we think that’s been effective.”Ream echoed the sentiments of the manager. “There are guys like myself, Michael [Bradley], Brad [Guzan],” he said. “We’ve been around the block. We’ve played a lot of games, a lot of meaningful games. We can kind of pass on our expertise or not, whatever these guys want to know, but it’s more leader by committee. The young kids aren’t shy. That’s fantastic.”Shared experiences, multiple opinions and a plethora of ideas are valuable things, but so is having a player or two to hold everyone accountable.”Guys that may not be the prettiest on the ball, but they will put their head through a wall for the team,” DeMerit said. “Is there enough of that right now? I don’t know.””Roy Keane is a strong personality. You don’t even see that. Somebody who is kind of an a–hole out there. I think we lack that a little bit,” former U.S. defender Jimmy Conrad said. “Sometimes your best 11 players aren’t necessarily your most talented 11 players. A lot of that does come down to chemistry, report and trust — and counting on guys in tough moments, having personalities on the field. Who is going to step up and hold people accountable? All that stuff matters.”Spend enough time around the team, and it’s clear that there’s a lack of personality, at least outwardly. McKennie, likable and fun in Germany, is dull and demure. Others, such as Tim Weah, have electric personalities that are muted with the national team. It’s a trend that started under Klinsmann, so desperate to be the largest personality in the room, and has continued through a vanilla 2018 and 2019. It’s too bad, considering that there’s nothing wrong with showing a little bit of personality. Look how doing so, combined with success, vaulted the women’s national team into the popularity stratosphere over the summer. In the past, the men weren’t the best in the world, but at least they were interesting.”Bob Bradley did a great job creating character within the dressing room,” DeMerit said. “If you look down the line at teams we have from 2008 through the 2010 World Cup, we had a wide range of characters. We had a wide range of leaders. Guys like Michael Bradley, fantastic work ethic, people who came in, kept their head down. Guys like me and Clint [Dempsey] riding their horses into training camp, saying, ‘Let’s go!’ I think Bob appreciated that about me, how I brought that renegade spirit to the group. Frankie Hejduk comes in and brings a bit more character.”Although being a leader and having a personality aren’t the same thing, the lack of both is an example of how the U.S. keeps falling short of its potential. It isn’t an intractable problem, but it’s one that needs to be fixed for the team to progress.Tyler Adams, a natural and intense leader who willed himself to the Bundesliga, has been absent for months. Could he be the answer when he rejoins the squad? Let’s hope he steps up or someone else does. Otherwise, the Americans are in danger of remaining a collection of individuals, desperate for someone to show them the way.
USMNT takes care of what’s expected — but same questions persist
10:10 PM ETJeff CarlisleU.S. soccer correspondent
The U.S. men’s national team did what was needed against Cuba in the group stage finale of the CONCACAF Nations League, prevailing 4-0 over the Lions of the Caribbean.
Jordan Morris continued his renaissance with two goals, with Josh Sargent adding two of his own. The win secured the Americans’ place in the semifinals of the competition, as they edged Canada in Group A on goal differential.Beyond that, there weren’t any overriding takeaways from the match. Cuba’s struggles with defections and organization — the match was played in the Cayman Islands due to stadium issues in Cuba — are well-documented. As such, it was a game the U.S. should have dominated, and it did, with a 69%-31% edge in possession and a 14-6 advantage in chances created.That said, there was some sloppy play mixed in among the goals, as the U.S. clearly took its foot off the pedal in the second half. The match will not be included in any 2019 highlight reels.One might argue that the Nations League gave a young U.S. side some needed experience for when World Cup qualifying comes around. Certainly, the Americans got punched in the face when they were beaten by Canada 2-0 last month, and the poor field conditions on display against Cuba might well be encountered again next year. But the Cayman Islands aren’t exactly San Pedro Sula in terms of difficult environments. Neither is Toronto, for that matter. As tests go, there are much, much tougher ones to come.As such, 2019 ends with many of the same questions that were present at the beginning. The U.S. won 11 games during the year, but there was no signature win among them to put a stamp on the Gregg Berhalter era. The Canada loss means the nerves present since the 2018 World Cup qualifying failure haven’t really gone away. Granted, the fact that the U.S. secured passage out of the Nations League group stage counts as a positive. But such sentiments have more to do with the fact that if the U.S. had been eliminated from the Nations League, a full-blown crisis would have ensued. Now the pressure will ease a bit, and the U.S. can regroup when the calendar moves into 2020.If there was one reason for optimism on Tuesday, it was the continued emergence of Morris. After a torn ACL wiped out almost all of his 2018, the Seattle native was an afterthought. But Morris found his form, settled into a wide position, won a title with the Sounders and added plenty to his team’s attack, whether it was for club or country. The five goals in his past five games for the U.S. were the same total he had in his first 34.Morris’ progression might end up being a critical development for a U.S. team that has long been too dependent on Christian Pulisic. The fact that Morris provides more of a classic wing presence than Pulisic gives the U.S. attack an added wrinkle.Sargent’s two goals came in vastly different ways, bundling home Paul Arriola’s deflected cross with the game just 36 seconds old and then a powerful finish from Tyler Boyd’s deft pass in the 66th minute. His performance highlighted what a critical season this is for him. Gyasi Zardes might lead the U.S. with six goals this year, but it is Sargent who has the higher ceiling. He’ll need to develop with Werder Bremen and show his ability when Berhalter calls him in. With Jozy Altidore still struggling to be consistently fit, having Sargent play at a high level would be a boon for the U.S.
But the same could be said for so many other players on the U.S. team from front to back. The matches in 2020, be they Nations League, World Cup qualifying or even Olympic qualifying for the U-23s, will be more intense.Success on those fronts means the level needs to be raised.
Player Ratings: Who earned the highest marks in USMNT win over Cuba?
November 19, 201911:07PM EGreg SeltzerContributor
The US national team sealed first place in League A, Group A of the Concacaf Nations League with a slightly underwhelming 4-0 defeat of Cuba in the Cayman Islands on Tuesday night. Gregg Berhalter’s boys lacked energy for large portions of the proceedings, but still made light work of an easy foe thanks to braces from Jordan Morris and Josh Sargent. Either way, they’re into the semifinals of the Concacaf Nations League against Honduras.
United States Player Ratings
Brad Guzan (6.5) — The veteran backstop came up with a couple of solid saves, including one on a tricky deflected shot that wrong-footed him slightly in the first half.
DeAndre Yedlin (5) — The Newcastle right back helped the Nats drive to the final third plenty of times, especially early, but played inaccurately once they got there. Regardless of how he performs in the EPL, Yedlin will find himself chasing green youngsters if he can’t snap a string of flat US outings.
Aaron Long (6) — The Red Bulls defender was tested so little at the back, his grade mostly came down to a few contributions on offensive restarts.
Tim Ream (7) — The skipper was by far the most active US player at halting Cuba advances and at moving the ball positively out of the back.
Daniel Lovitz (6) — While the new Nashville SC left back did well leading Morris into attack and served some dangerous corner kicks, he also had a couple of hiccups in defense.
Jackson Yueill (5.5) — The San Jose midfielder had his moments knocking the ball around Cuba’s end, but was a lot less firm defensively than he was against Canada on Friday.
Cristian Roldan (6.5) — As one of the few Nats intent on making overload runs, Roldan did his best to liven up the attack. He was also robbed on a diving bullet header.
Weston McKennie (6) — For the second game in a row, McKennie adequately found the game in central park. Even with an assist to his credit, though, he fell short of offering enough cutting edge to shine bright.
Paul Arriola (5) — After darting down the right to help set up Sargent’s quick opener, Arriola was largely ineffective the rest of the night. To boot, most of his restart deliveries were weak.
Jordan Morris (8) — The in-form Seattle flank ace was easily the best player on the field, making two goals and some tempting crosses look like child’s play.
Josh Sargent (7) — The Werder Bremen forward applied a fatal doorstep touch in the opening minute, but was all but invisible the rest of the first half. Sargent markedly picked up the pace after intermission, and was rewarded with a second goal.
Coach Gregg Berhalter (6) — The boss went with a very straightforward game plan against a clearly overmatched opponent. The result was the expected run-of-play dominance and a bare minimum margin of victory.
Tyler Boyd (5.5) — It was rather disappointing to see the Besiktas winger be so lackadaisical in attack, but he somewhat rescued his grade with a nifty leaping backheel assist.
Reggie Cannon (6) — Although his defensive work was less than stellar, Cannon should have been credited with a second assist for the excellent cross that led to Sargent’s second.
Alfredo Morales (7) — If not for a pair of outstanding saves by the Cuba netminder, Morales could have made it three US players with a brace. It was a strong all-around 21-minute shift for the Fortuna Düsseldorf man.
Brooks 8/10, Zardes 7/10 as U.S. avenges last month’s Canada defeat
Nov 15, 2019Jason DavisU.S. soccer writer
The United States men’s national team put in something of a redemptive performance in Orlando, Florida, on Friday night, besting Canada 4-1 at Exploria Stadium. The victory not only earned the Americans some relief from the negativity that has marked the past month and a measure of revenge against Canada, it set them up to advance atop their Nations League group with a win over hapless Cuba on Tuesday.
The Americans responded to the call for more fight with a spirited performance in a must-win game. Last month’s 2-0 loss in Toronto prompted serious questions about the lack of effort under Gregg Berhalter that were refuted, at least on some level, on Friday. The USMNT used tried-and-true methods, set pieces and counterattacks, to punish a sloppy Canadian side and ease some of the pressure.
The U.S. didn’t play the cleanest match, and Berhalter’s preferred possession-based approach was sacrificed on the altar of winning. After calls for change and a more pragmatic plan, that can’t be used to criticize the coach now. Still, the Americans won’t point to this victory as an example of an ideal performance.
Manager rating out of 10
7 — Berhalter gets credit for streamlining the tactical approach and playing to the strengths of his team. Pregame worries about the lineup proved unfounded, though it’s still worth asking why several players (Gyasi Zardes and Jackson Yueill among them) earned a place in the first XI despite long layoffs. That said, Zardes delivered for his manager, scoring a brace amid widespread criticism from USMNT supporters.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Brad Guzan, 7 — Faced limited action and made no obvious mistakes with possession. Controlled his box well and was hung out to dry on Canada’s goal.
DF Sergino Dest, 7 — Solid on defense facing the explosive Alphonso Davies, he was as adventurous as ever going forward in an excellent overall competitive debut.
DF Aaron Long, 6 — Contributed on the attacking end with the set piece goal and was part of a strong defensive performance for the Americans during open play.
DF John Brooks, 8 — Dominant physically and smart with his positioning. Notably was good in possession, particularly when under pressure in the first half.
DF Tim Ream, 5 — Complicit at the back post on Canada’s goal and wasteful with possession on occasion. Provided little going forward, by design.
MF Jackson Yueill, 6 — Played proactively, helping to set the tone with energy and industry in the first half. On the other hand, he was a step slow tracking runners in midfield.
MF Weston McKennie, 5 — Poor in possession but gave the midfield a much-needed toughness. Not influential, but not poor.
Gyasi Zardes’ selection for the national team has come under fire, but the 28-year-old answered the bell with a brace vs. Canada. Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
MF Sebastian Lletget, 8 — Consistently dangerous, he often took advantage of reactive defending from Canada. Integral in setting up numerous chances.
FW Jordan Morris, 7 — Got the U.S. off to a great start with an opportunistic early goal and laid on the second for Zardes. Industrious and put in a good shift, particularly after playing in an MLS Cup final just five days earlier.
FW Gyasi Zardes, 7 — Scored two goals in his return to the lineup, rewarding Berhalter for his faith. Added to the defensive effort with effective back-pressing.
FW Paul Arriola 5 — Solid on both sides of the ball and set up the second goal with a smart pass on the counter.
MF Alfredo Morales, N/R — Chaotic and overexuberant in a short cameo.
DF DeAndre Yedlin, N/R — Showed his danger up the wing as a sub, setting up Zardes’ culminating goal.
FW Tyler Boyd, N/R — The Besiktas man came on for injury time after the U.S. had already sealed things with a fourth.
Indiana Punches 33rd-Straight Ticket to NCAA Tournament, Earns No. 5 Seed
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – After winning both the Big Ten regular season and tournament titles, the Indiana University men’s soccer team earned the No. 5 overall seed for the 2019 NCAA Tournament.
Indiana earned a bye in the first round and will host the winner of Kentucky and Loyola-Chicago on Sunday, Nov. 24. First kick is scheduled for noon at Jerry Yeagley Field at Bill Armstrong Stadium. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for youth (18 & under)and can be purchased at IUHoosiers.com.
Fans are encouraged to purchase tickets online to avoid game day lines. Reminder that there are no service fees for tickets purchased at IUHoosiers.com.
Indiana University students will get in free as IU Athletic Director Fred Glass and IU Athletics will purchase their tickets for each round of the NCAA Tournament that the Hoosiers host. Students must show student ID at the ticket window to redeem free ticket.
The berth for the Hoosiers is the team’s 33rd-straight bid to the NCAA Tournament and the 44th overall in the program’s history. The 33-straight berths are the longest active streak in the country.
Indiana earned the No. 5 national seed for the second time since the tournament expanded to the current seeding. The Hoosiers secured the fifth seed in the 2014 season and lost to Xavier, 2-1, in the second round.
Since the NCAA began its current seeding format in 2003, the Hoosiers have earned a top-16 seed in 15 of the 17 tournaments and a top-8 seed 10 times. IU has appeared in 20 College Cups, which leads all Division I teams, and won its eighth national title in 2012.
The Hoosiers enter the NCAA Tournament with an overall record of 14-2-4. Indiana repeated as Big Ten regular season and tournament champions for the first time since going back-to-back in the 1998 and 1999 seasons. The regular season title marked the 16th in program history, while the tournament crown is the 14th won by IU. The championship double marked the 10th time in the storied history of Indiana men’s soccer.
IU posted a mark of 5-2-4 against NCAA Tournament teams this season, including victories over No. 13 Michigan and No. 15 Penn State. Maryland also secured an at-large bid out of the Big Ten Conference into the NCAA Tournament.
The Hoosiers played to a 0-0 draw earlier this season against the Kentucky Wildcats. Overall, IU has an all-time record of 25-2-4 against UK and have not matched up against Loyola-Chicago.