So I made a little mistake. I have been putting it out over the past few days that the US vs BH friendly is scheduled for 3:30 ET when it is in fact at 2:30. Rather than going in and correcting all of my time flubs, I have decided to leave them in and just call myself out for being stupid...also I said it 2 or 3 times on the podcast coming out later today, and it would be extremly time consuming to fix that...so...next time I shall get it right
Ok US soccer fans, the roster came out today for the friendly against Bosnia & Herzegovina on Wednesday at 3:30 ET (showing on ESPN2 & UniMas). The roster featured very few surprises (that is if you have followed the news coming out of camp), Aron Johannsson & John Anthony Brooks highlight the first timers, Clint Dempsey & Landon Donovan do not find themselves on the call sheet (along with most of MLS). Full roster below:
Keepers – Cody Cropper (Southampton, England), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa, England), Tim Howard (Everton, England)
Defense – John Anthony Brooks (Hertha Berlin, Germany), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City, England), Edgar Castillo (Tijuana, Mexico), Brad Evans (Seattle, United States), Michael Orozco Fiscal (Puebla, Mexico), Michael Parkhurst (Ausberg, Germany), Tim Ream (Bolton, England)
Midfield –Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes, France), Michael Bradley (Roma, Italy), Joe Corona (Tijuana, Mexico), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg, Norway), Jermaine Jones (Schalke, Germany), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim, Germany), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht, Belgium), Danny Williams (Reading, England)
Striker – Jozy Altidore (Sunderland, England), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Wien, Austria), Aron Johannsson (AZ, Holland), Eddie Johnson (Seattle, United States), Bobby Wood (1860 Munich, Germany).
I’m not really gonna focus too much on the obvious selections (Howard, Guzan, Cameron, Altidore, Bradely, Jones, and the Johnson’s) or the lack of MLS guys (if you’ll remember, I did predict an all European squad), but I want to go into a few of these guys a bit, one slightly run-on sentence for each.
Predicted Line-up against Bosnia-Herzegovina, and 6 substitutions (based on most to least likely in my opinion):
Diskerud => Jones
E. Johnson => Boyd
Kljestan => Corona
Wood => Bedoya
F. Johnson => Castillo
Ream => Cameron
Check in tomorrow for the Podcast, check out the game Wednesday at 3:30ET on ESPN and UniMas
Edin Džeko is really the highlight of this very good B&H roster. The 27-year old Manchester City Striker is the nations all-time leading scorer with 29 career international goals in 54 caps. He is also leading at scorers in UEFA World Cup Qualifying with 8 goals. Bosnia & Herzegovina currently sit at 1st place through six games in UEFA Group G. The share a group with Greece, Slovakia, Lithuania, Latvia & Liechtenstein. The nation is hoping to Qualify for their first ever World Cup. This is their first ever match-up against the United States, in previous appearences against CONCACAF they have 2 losses. The game will be played in Sarajevo at 3:30 ET on Wednesday August 14. The US Roster will likely be announced within the coming days, it is expected to be mostly consis
KEEPERS- Asmir Avdukić (FK Borac Banja Luka), Asmir Begović (Stoke City), Jasmin Fejzić (VfR Aalen)
DEFENSE- Ermin Bičakčić (Eintracht Braunschweig), Mensur Mujdža (Freiburg), Emir Spahić (Bayer Leverkusen), Toni Šunjić (Zorya Lugansk), Ervin Zukanović (KAA Gent)
MIDFIELD- Senad Lulić (Lazio), Haris Medunjanin (Gaziantepspor), Zvjezdan Misimović (Guizhou Renhe), Miralem Pjanić (AS Roma), Elvir Rahimić (CSKA Moscow), Sejad Salihović (TSG Hoffenheim), Miroslav Stevanović (Elche), Avdija Vršajević (Hajduk Split), Adnan Zahirović (VfL Bocum),
STRIKER- Edin Džeko (Manchester City), Vedad Ibišević (VfB Stuttgart), Edin Višća (Istanbul BB FK)
Ok,so I'm gonna be completely honest. After the first game I watched this weekend, I was really only half paying attention to the others...but an attempt was made.
Also, because I had plans in the evening and all the games were in the morning, there was no beer to watch the games with...and that makes me sad.
Now I did watch the MLS All-Star Game against Roma on Wednesday, but I'm not going to say much about that other than the fact the Michael Bradley was a boss, you can't just an all-star team full of great players on a poor performance (despite the fact that the Collin-Beslar pairing was weaker than expected considering they play with each other week in and week out), and thanks guys at MLSsoccer.com for answering my questions on the air. Roma won 3-1 in case you were wondering
I started with Emirates Cup match with Galatasaray vs FC Porto. Honestly it looked like Porto was going to have this game from the beginning, they were dominating the game for the entire first half and did a great job of limiting Drogba's looks. The second half was a completely different story. I don't know what happened at halftime but Head Coach Fatih Terim made some excellent adjustments, and his team started finding space (granted that may be on FC Porto for their halftime adjustments particularly at the half). Very rare you see a game with 3 PK's and only 1 is hit. Felipe Melo struck his well enough to give Galatasaray the 1-0 win. I don't know how much you can take away from a Friendly match, but Galatasary is usually in the Champions League picture and they have spent the money to keep up with the bigger European powers to some extent. Porto however may have just lost out on good opportunities that could have developed later in the game if they had stuck with a consistent line-up rather than trying out some players for depth-sake.
I got distracted in-between matches and missed a majority of the Napoli vs Arsenal match, but I do remember turning it on in about the 70th minute, seeing Arsenal down 2-0 and think it was over and I should just turn it off...then Giroud muscled his way into a bicycle kick that (thanks to a deflection off Sagna) found the back of the net. A few minutes later, they had leveled the match. Now Napoli had a great year in Serie A this past season, and I now its preseason, but how can you blow a lead like that. Especially bad for recent loanee Pepe Reina, giving up two late goal will make any fans forget the penalty you saved, cause all that says to them is "dang, we could've lost."
I turned on the Celtic vs Ross County game, but didn't see much as I received a long expected phone call that went on for a while, Celtic won 2-1
I also watch a little of the PSV Eindhoven vs ADO Den Haag game. 2 things, 1) the game was broadcast in Spanish which was a little bit of a culture shock, watching Dutch football in Spanish. 2) It was weird to watch the Dutch League after saying on the podcast last week that I wouldn't. I was glad to see ADO stick with them, and even give them a run for the money at the end, but PSV is a better team and come mid-season, they should dominate this match-up more than they did. PSV won 3-2, giving up a goal in stoppage time to make the score look closer that it was.
I missed all the Guinness International Champions Cup matches and the MLS matches (yes I am primarily an MLS fan). But what was good is my dad watched the Everton vs Real Madrid match. My dad is the one who got me playing and watching soccer as a kid and he hasn't watched it very much lately so it was really cool to talk with him about it. Even better, my girlfriend Jessi, who is currently in Europe (heading towards Barcelona actually) is experience how important the game is there and has stated that she is interested in following it when she gets home. No more feeling guilty for setting the alarm early on Saturdays to watch EPL games!
Looking forward to some more games this week!
We are 9 days out from the USA’s friendly match in Sarajevo against Bosnia & Herzegovina. This will be the first (and potentially only) European trip for the national team in 2013 and a big test as they go up against the 14th ranked team in the world, a team that could feature the likes of Manchester City’s Eden Dzeko, Roma’s Miralem Pjanic and Stoke City’s Asmir Begovic. Following a great run of form over the Gold Cup playing a squad primarily consisting of MLS and Mexican based players, we should expect to see the exact opposite join us for this match. With the match falling on a Wednesday, most of the Mexican & American based players will likely not be called up since they have matches on both weekends anchoring the fixture. That being said, I have forgone every western player in favor of guys who ply their trade in Europe.
Keepers – The first two are obvious, Howard & Guzan are the starting keeper and the heir-apparent. Now seeing as how there are only 4 other keepers who been called up in the past 2 years, and all of them play in MLS, I could see us only calling up 2 keepers. But for arguments sake, lets say they call another, which means the choice are probably 1 of 2 guys; U-20 player and Southampton youth player Cody Cropper, or Steve Clark who plays for Honefoss in Norway. If one gets called (and its pretty unlikely) I’ll guess it will be Cropper.
· Tim Howard
· Brad Guzan
· Cody Cropper
Defense - This would’ve been easy 2 months ago, but with Goodson & Bocanegra back in MLS, it might get a little interesting. Reports have surfaced about John Anthony Brooks being a sure thing, a good performance her would put him right in the mix for a World Cup spot. Geoff Cameron is pretty much a lock. Chandler seems a certainty provided he is healthy. Other choices are really up in the air based on health, but here’s what I’ve got. Ream will get his first looks since 2011 to shore up the backline. Fabian Johnson may play in the midfield but for arguments sake I’ll list him here. Parkhurst had a strong Gold Cup and merits another call-up. Steve Cherundolo is out with another knee surgery, Will Packwood is still recovering so I’m going to just list Alfredo Morales despite the fact that his teams have primarily play him at holding mid.
· John Anthony Brooks
· Geoff Cameron
· Timmy Chandler
· Fabian Johnson
· Michael Parkhurst
· Tim Ream
· Alfredo Morales
Midfield – Here comes the real class of this squad, all the regulars return, bolstered by the players who rocked out in the Gold Cup: Bradley, Jones, Kljestan, Bedoya, & Diskerud. I predict the return of Danny Williams who is preparing with new club Reading for a new season. Joseph Gyau has yet to represent the national team, but Gyau played on the youth squads and was called into camp for the Russia game. The last spot I’m going to give to Bayern Munich youth product Julian Green.
· Michael Bradley
· Jermaine Jones
· Sacha Kljestan
· Alejandro Bedoya
· Mix Diskerud
· Danny Williams
· Joe Gyau
· Julian Green
Strikers – Jozy is the obvious first team choice. Aron Johannsson should be on this roster (provided the paperwork gets cleared), his season with AZ started with a goal and an assist this weekend. Boyd has 3 goals thus far in for Rapid Wien’s 2013-2014 campaign. The other two should be Bobby Wood, who was listed on the preliminary Gold Cup roster but didn’t make the final team, and Andrew Wooten who has played very well in the German 2nd Division.
· Jozy Altidore
· Aron Johannsson
· Terrence Boyd
· Bobby Wood
· Andrew Wooten
Alternates/Dark Horses - Sebastian Lletget, Conor O’Brien, Zak Whitbread, Eric Lichaj, Brian Span, Steve Clark, Charlie Davies
Honestly these are all shots in the dark, many of these alternates have never received a call up or haven’t been in awhile. Lichaj and Lletget have the strongest chances. There is a strong possibility that coach only calls 18 and leaves off some regular starters like Jones and Bradley. If Johansson is eligible I see Altidore not making the trip at all, he does begin Sunderland’s EPL campaign just a few days later, so he might need to stay in their camp to fight for his job.
Well that’s pretty much it. Once the rosters are out I will make predictions about the line-ups and game results. Also stay tuned for the next edition of the Pint for the Pitch podcast where we will do a full pregame special about the match.
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