The United States men’s national team is mercifully done with the group stage, unbeaten in the standings but fallible on the field after a 1-1 draw against Panama in Kansas City on Monday night.
Admittedly, some of us called this the equivalent of the Gold Cup’s Group of Death even before we saw Haiti look like a real football side for the first time in a while, but few expected the Yanks to play three close matches.
So how’d the group do? We’ve got some ideas (Though as we learned from the Honduras match, each player ratings is up for some serious comment section debate and vitriol).
Brad Guzan 8/10 — Unsure what you want from a keeper other than this. Hung out to dry on Blas Perez’s goal. Other than that and an odd drop after collecting a corner, he was as spotless as his dome.
Timmy Chandler 3/10 — Offensively, he can do some things. Defensively, I don’t get it. If Jurgen Klinsmann loves him so much, maybe see if he can play further up the field?
Ventura Alvarado 4/10 — Awful, again, on the goal, but wasn’t shaken and looked much, much better in the second half.
John Brooks 5/10 — He’s been much better, and he’s also been much worse. The yellow card that earned him a suspension for the next match was needless, but he’s 22. Will he learn? Strong second half.
Fabian Johnson 7/10 — Even when he plays a quiet match, Johnson is one of the USMNT’s best all-around players.
Kyle Beckerman 5/10 — Couple bad giveaways, and credit for muscling through a bloody injury. But getting changed on the field?!? How immodest (We kid).
Michael Bradley 8/10 — Sorry, Landon, but Bradley has a legit chance to go down as the most important player in USMNT history. The captain led by example, and scored the equalizer.
Alfredo Morales (off HT) 4/10 — Won a few 50/50 balls, but mostly just found himself sucked into the middle of the park and denying the attack width. Looks out of his depth far more often than you’d like (which is never, but you get the idea).
Ale Bedoya (off 71′) 6/10 — Didn’t make an impression early in his return from injury, but his relentless nature shone through as the match wore on. Indecisive on a key first-half chance that came to nothing.
Gyasi Zardes 5/10 — Struggled again in the first half and didn’t make a positive impact, but it’s hard not to like his second half. He works his butt off every game, and if he can become 90 minutes strong he’s got a future.
Chris Wondolowski (off HT) 7/10 — He didn’t score, but he played his best USMNT game in a while. Likely came off for tactical reasons, because he played a strong match as a hold-up man. Lay-offs were very good.
Clint Dempsey (on HT) 7/10 — Did some good things and had a great group stage. His savvy on the goal was unmistakable.
DeAndre Yedlin (on HT) 5/10 — Ran his shoes off, but was neither bad nor good.
Aron Johansson (on 71′) 5/10 — Seemed a bit trigger-shy, but wasn’t poor. Still waiting to find an optimal strike partner for the Icelandic-Alabaman.