U.S. Player Ratings: U.S. vs Venezuela

J.C. LilleheiContributor IIJanuary 22, 2012

U.S. Player Ratings: U.S. vs Venezuela

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    The United States squeaked out a 1-0 victory tonight over Venezuela in stoppage time. There was no lack of offense considering the U.S. had 12 shots on goal but had little to show for it.

    This team is one of the younger and less experienced national team camps that we've had due to the fact the majority of professional leagues are not on break. These ratings are determined from what I thought after watching the game.

Keeper: Bill Hamid

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    Hamid wasn't challenged much throughout the match until the last 10 minutes, but he did a good job at punching away a dangerous cross sent in.

    Like I said before, he didn't have many opportunities to showcase his abilities, but he was solid and did what he needed to be done.

    Hopefully, Hamid starts again on Wednesday against Panama rather than Nick Rimando, because Hamid has a bright future with the USMNT.

    Rating: 6 out 10

Centerback: Geoff Cameron

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    Cameron got his first start for the national team and did a good job. The United States spent the majority of the time on the attack, so Cameron wasn't challenged nearly as much as you would expect in a friendly.

    However, Cameron displayed good speed for a man of his size when chasing down some of the loose balls in the U.S. end. He also showed that he can be a force in the air, winning a good number of headers.

    Rating: 6.5 out of 10 

Centerback: Michael Parkhurst

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    Parkhurst came into this match as one of the more experienced players, earning the 10th cap of his international career. Parkhurst, who at 5'11" is a bit undersized for a centerback, did a solid job against a very stagnant Venezuela attack.

    He made smart passes and wasn't caught out of position often; he even managed to get his head on the ball off a corner that went just wide. 

     

    Rating: 6.5 of 10

Leftback: Heath Pearce

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    Pearce came into this game with the second most international experience of anyone in the camp (33 international caps).

    That being said, Pearce had a relatively quiet night and wasn't challenged very often but sometimes struggled getting his passes forward to Shea. Zach Loyd replaced him in the 73rd minute.

     

    Rating: 5 out of 10

Rightback: A.J. DeLaGarza

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    DeLaGarza, who normally plays centerback for the LA Galaxy, was forced to play out of position tonight and did an adequate job.

    At times, DeLaGarza tried to do too much and took too may extra touches that either ended up with killing the momentum or losing possession.

    He didn't have a horrible game (think Johnathan Bornstein vs. Mexico) but he definitely is one of the players who did not play well.

     

    Rating: 5 out of 10

Midfielder: Jermaine Jones

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    Jones, who is currently serving an eight-week ban in the Bundesliga for stamping on Marco Reus's hand, played a fantastic game.

    Jones captained the U.S. and was a leader on the field and completely controlled the midfield for the U.S.

    He missed an opportunity for a goal after hooking a Feilhaber cross left of the post but his passing tonight was superb, and his corner kick connected with Ricardo Clark for the game-winning goal.

    In my opinion, he was the most deserving of 'Man of the Match.'

     

    Rating: 8 out of 10

Midfielder: Jeff Larentowicz

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    Larentowicz started next to Jones and had a solid night himself. He didn't do anything spectacular, but he didn't do anything that warrants of a negative review.

    Made some good passes, made some bad passes.  He was subbed off in the 62nd minute for Ricardo Clark. 

    Rating: 5 out of 10

Left Midfielder: Brek Shea

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    Despite being one of the younger players in camp, Shea was one of the more experienced internationally, earning his 10th cap.

    Shea started out on the left side of the midfield and had two early chances, one which he pushed wide and the second on a corner that was saved by the Venezuelan keeper, Leo Morales.

    Shea quieted down after he moved to the right side of the midfield, but overall, he had a solid night and showed why Jurgen Klinsmann is so high on him.

     

    Rating: 6 out of 10

Right Midfielder: Graham Zusi

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    Zusi contributed early on in the game with some good passes, including his free kick that almost led to a Brek Shea headed goal, and he had a good chance to score that was parried wide by Morales. 

    He disappeared in the second half. His Sporting KC teammate, C.J. Sapong, subbed him out in the 73rd minute.

     

    Rating: 5 out of 10

Center Forward: Benny Feilhaber

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    Feilhaber, the 2010 World Cup veteran, had a very respectable game.

    Despite the fact he spent a good share of his time being mauled by Venezuelan defender Carlos Salazar, Feilhaber showed his creative ability and had a beautiful pass that lead to Brek Shea's first attempt on goal.

    Feilhaber showed enough to warrant a call up for next month's friendly against Italy. He was subbed off in the 62nd minute for Chris Wondolowski. 

     

    Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Striker: Teal Bunbury

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    Bunbury, coming off a good MLS season, had a somewhat mediocre night.

    He at times took too many touches rather than just pass it off to someone, but he had a couple of good opportunities, including one that skied just over the bar early on.

    As the game wore on, Bunbury clearly was getting tired. He should have got more involved in the air and used his athleticism but didn't factor in much on the eight U.S. corners. 

     

    Rating: 5.5 out of 10

Sub 1: Ricardo Clark

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    Ricardo Clark, the lone goal scorer of the night, isn't exactly a fan favorite due to his blunder in the 2010 World Cup, but he had himself a very good night.

    Clark came on in the 62nd minute and brought a good amount of energy into the game. He did an excellent job of breaking free from his defender on the corner and heading the ball into the bottom left-hand corner of the goal.

    One of his best games in the red, white and blue.

     

    Rating: 7 out of 10

Sub 2: Chris Wondolowski

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    Wondolowski's short international career might be best known for his horrid miss against Panama in the 2011 Gold Cup, but he has been one of the most consistent goal scorers in the MLS for the past three years.

    Wondo came on for Feilhaber in order to move into a more aggressive and attacking formation. He didn't do much, but some of this has to do with the Venezuelan defense being extremely aggressive on corners and at one point knocking him over. 

     

    Rating: 5 out of 10

Sub 3: Zach Loyd

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    Loyd came on for Heath Pearce in the 73rd minute and had a fantastic game. Loyd showed his ability in going forward and really impressed with his passing ability.

    He had a beautiful cross that was almost headed in by C.J. Sapong, if not for a class save by Morales.

    Loyd played well enough that I expect him to get a shot at starting for the Wednesday friendly.

     

    Rating: 6.5 out of 10

Sub 4: C.J. Sapong

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    Sapong, the MLS rookie of the year, came on in the 73rd minute and had a good game. He showed that he has the ability to be very physical and use his body when needed.

    This was showcased when he made a run into the box off of Loyd's cross and nearly headed it in.

    He didn't get a whole lot of time, but it could be interesting if he and his clubmate, Bunbury, were to start up front together on Wednesday.

     

    Rating: 6 out of 10 

Sub 5: Brad Evans

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    The Arizona native, Evans came on in the 88th minute and thus didn't do much.

     

    Rating: Incomplete

Next Game vs. Panama: Jan. 25

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    Overall, it was a solid night for the 'B team' of American players. Securing a win is always the most important thing, but the game against Panama will be tougher.

    Klinsmann will likely use some new faces in the game, but these friendlies are meant to see what these players are made of and who has a future with the USMNT.

    Thanks for reading!