Americans Abroad Roundup
It was a schizophrenic weekend for the United States Men’s National Team stars abroad, with a number of bright performances marred by an equal number of sketchy outings.
From England to Germany to Mexico and everywhere in between, here is the breakdown of how our beloved Nats performed with their clubs this weekend.
One of the best performances of the weekend belonged to Tim Howard, as Everton cruised to a 3-0 win over Swansea.
Although Howard had a quiet day overall, he was called on to mop up for his defense’s poor play on three separate occasions coming up with some semi-miraculous saves.
In stoppage time of the first half, Howard had to stop a point blank effort from only eight yards out, kick saving the shot over the bar.
Shortly after halftime in the 50th minute, Howard was called on again, stopping a wide open effort from 16 yards out.
Then, only a few minutes later in the 54th minute, Howard did well to tip a Swansea shot over the crossbar.
He finished with four saves on the day.
Danny Williams, Fabian Johnson and Steve Cherundolo all started and went the distance as Hoffenheim beat Hannover 3-1 in the Bundesliga.
Johnson had a fantastic goal in the first half scorching Cherundolo on the outside before slotting home coolly for the goal for Hoffenheim. Then, in stoppage time, Williams rounded out the goal-scoring for Hoffenheim by finishing off an open netter setup by his teammate.
Stoke vs. Chelsea
Maurice Edu did not make the starting XI or even the bench for Stoke City, possibly putting in jeopardy his national team status for the October qualifiers.
Geoff Cameron was in the starting XI, putting in another game at right back.
Cameron had a ho-hum game, getting forward well on a few occasions and even had one service that easily could have resulted in a goal, but spent a lot of the game getting sucked in centrally and creating disorganization in the backline for Stoke.
Playing against Chelsea’s 4-2-3-1, Cameron got caught drifting into the space offered to him on the right side of the pitch, but when Stoke would inevitably lose possession, Chelsea was quick to get in behind him.
It wasn’t a bad effort by Cameron, but he definitely did not look wholly comfortable being played out wide.
Getting His First EPL Start of the Season…
Clint Dempsey worked his way into Tottenham’s starting XI for the first time in league play this season, going 87 minutes in Spurs 2-1 win over QPR.
He had a nice blast early in the second half from distance, but it was right at QPR’s Julio Cesar.
Dempsey setup Jermaine Defoe nicely in the 84th minute, but the chance was wasted. Other than that, Dempsey seemed a bit out of sync with his new teammates throughout much of the match.
Again, not a bad performance, but certainly not up to the high standards Dempsey has established for himself.
Lichaj was fairly poor in possession and was a big factor in allowing Southampton back into the match by losing the ball and then failing to recover into the play on Southampton’s first goal. Lichaj was also cautioned in the match and withdrawn in the 67th minute.
Although Guzan didn’t have any howlers, he could have done better on at least one of Southampton’s goals. Guzan was also lucky not to be sent off in extra time as he took down a Southampton striker on a breakaway, conceding a penalty for the fourth goal.
Rounding out the Weekend
Carlos Bocanegra made his debut and put in a 90-minute effort for Racing Santander in Spain.
Jermaine Jones put in a 78-minute effort for Schalke in their 2-0 loss to Bayern Munich.
Jozy Altidore put in 90 minutes in AZ Alkmaar’s 2-1 loss.
In Denmark, Michael Parkhurst played 82 minutes, and Clarence Goodson was sent off in the 90th minute as both of their clubs picked up a point in draws.
In Austria, Terrence Boyd did not play, and, in Italy, Michael Bradley’s AS Roma match was postponed.
In Mexico, Jose Torres played 68 minutes in Pachuca’s loss, and Herculez Gomez had a four-minute cameo appearance in Santos Laguna’s 0-0 draw.
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