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USMNT player ratings from a smooth, controlling win over Guatemala

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The United States men’s national team rebounded from Friday night’s embarrassing loss in Guatemala City to retake control of its World Cup qualifying destiny with a 4-0 win in Columbus, Ohio.

[ MORE: Match recap | Three things we learned ]

These player ratings will be a whole lot better than Friday night’s edition, as the Yanks controlled the game the way they should against an opponent like Guatemala.

Here goes something:

Starting XI

Brad Guzan — 6 — His first save was easy, and came in the 34th minute. Barely troubled, and that’s the way it should be against Guatemala.

Edgar Castillo — 6 — A fine tackle early, but not much else to do. Stayed tight on his marks and the ball. Wasn’t exactly marauding down the left.

Geoff Cameron — 9 — Funny how playing one of your best players at one of his best positions helps. Played the long ball that Zardes knocked down for Dempsey’s opening goal.

Steve Birnbaum — 6 — Again, didn’t face a load of work but was tidy in his business.

DeAndre Yedlin — 7 — One of his finer performances as a national teamer came, no surprise here, when he was set at right back. Lively and active, if a bit too theatrical.

Kyle Beckerman — 6 — Totally fine, and allowed his back four and the five in front of him to do work. That’s usually what he does, you know?

Michael Bradley — 8 — Not a huge surprise to see the captain rebound from a rough Friday in Guatemala City. Played a picture-perfect free kick on Cameron’s goal, and should’ve had an assist on Wood’s missed sitter.

Graham Zusi (Off 81′) — 7 — Had a rough free kick from the right in the first half, but played with fire (without playing with fire) in keeping the Yanks’ heads on straight.

Gyasi Zardes (Off 71′) — 5 — Was a part of two goals. The first was a terrific run up the gut of the Guatemala defense, the second was more of what his night resembled, fighting his touch despite good smarts and athleticism.

Clint Dempsey — 7 — Took his chances, and took them well.

Bobby Wood (Off 66′) — 5 — Missed an all-time sitter, but was otherwise lively in the attacking trio up top.

Subs

Jozy Altidore (On 66′) — 7 — You’d like him starting — he’s injured — but what an impact sub this guy is after a defense deals with smaller, shiftier guys all night.

Ethan Finlay (On 71′) — 7 — We’ll give him the 7 as if he scored the goal that should’ve stood. He was onside. The refs did not have a good night.

Christian Pulisic (On 81′) — 6 — Lively enough, played well positionally, and is now cap-tied to these United States.

Watch Live: West Ham United v. Liverpool

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After weeks of having a game in hand on Premier League title chasers Manchester City and Leicester City, the full extent of Liverpool’s lead will be revealed when the Reds visit West Ham United on Wednesday (Watch live, 2:45 p.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com).

[ STREAM: Every PL game live here ]

Once the full-time whistle blows at the London Stadium, all 20 PL sides will have played 24 games. Ahead of kickoff, Jurgen Klopp‘s side leads second-place Man City by a whopping 16 points.

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West Ham, meanwhile, sit 17th in the table and are only clear of the relegation zone by way of goal differential. That’s something that could very easily change between now and 5 p.m. ET.

LIVE, League Cup semifinal: Man City v. Man United

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It’s time for leg two of the Manchester derby in the semifinals of the EFL Cup (Wednesday, 2:45 p.m. ET) at the Etihad Stadium.

[ LIVE: Man City v. Man United ]

Manchester City lead 3-1 following their first-leg dismantling of Manchester United at Old Trafford. In theory, it’s a mere formality to reach the final at Wembley, where they would take on Aston Villa following their late dramatics on Tuesday.

Click on the link above to follow the action live, while we will have you covered here at Pro Soccer Talk with all of the reaction and analysis.

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Transfer rumor roundup: Richarlison to Barca for $110m? Spurs’ striker search

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Watch our transfer deadline day show from 6-8 p.m. ET on Jan. 31, live on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com.


A roundup of all of the major transfer rumors, most notably those involving Premier League clubs, on Wednesday…

[ MORE: Spurs complete Bergwijn transfer from PSV ]

Barcelona have reportedly had a $110-million bid for Richarlison rejected by Everton. That’s a mind-blowing number for a club like Everton to receive, but the Toffees apparently didn’t have to think long before saying “thanks, but no thanks.” Luis Suarez is expected to miss four months due to a knee injury, leaving the Blaugrana somewhat for a replacement. Everton, however, have no desire to lose a key member of their squad with little to no time to sign a replacement.


After adding winger Steven Bergwijn on Wednesday, Tottenham Hotspur are heavily linked with a number of strikers as options to replace the injured Harry Kane. AC Milan’s Krzysztof Piatek is the most frequently linked (and most expensive) player coming out of the rumor mill, while Chelsea’s Olivier Giroud has come up as an emergency option (he is reportedly open to the idea). However, Jose Mourinho has reportedly been told he has just $13 million to acquire a new forward after spending a combined $108 million on Bergwijn and Gedson Fernandes.


Elsewhere in Tottenham rumors, full back Kyle Walker-Peters is expected to complete a loan move (without an option to buy) to Southampton in the very near future. The 22-year-old has been on the fringe of the first-team squad for what feels like five years now, but has never quite broken through. This could be Spurs putting into the shop window a player who they don’t believe is in their long-term plans in order to drive up his price tag come this summer.


Sheffield United look set to make a big push for a top-six finish, as the Blades are linked with moves for a pair of highly rated young players: Richairo Zivkovic, from Chinese side Changchun Yatai, and Sander Berge, from Genk. Zivkovic was one of the most highly touted youngsters in Europe before moving to China on a big-money deal; Berge has been linked with some of the biggest clubs across Europe in recent years, all the while the 21-year-old has become a fixture for the Belgian side.

Man United confirm agreement for Bruno Fernandes

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Watch our transfer deadline day show from 6-8 p.m. ET on Jan. 31, live on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com.


Bruno Fernandes is on the brink of becoming a Manchester United player after the club announced on Wednesday that an agreement has been reached with Portuguese side Sporting CP.

[ MORE: Spurs complete Bergwijn transfer from PSV ]

From the club’s website, which is currently unreachable at the time of posting:

“Manchester United are delighted to announce it has reached agreement with Sporting Clube de Portugal for the transfer of Bruno Fernandes.

“The deal is subject to a medical and the agreement of personal terms. A further announcement will be made in due course.”

The dollar figure most commonly reported is $61 million (potentially reaching $88 million after add-ons). Fernandes, 25, is reportedly in the process of visiting the Sporting offices to terminate his current contract and record a goodbye video for fans before boarding a flight to Manchester.

Fernandes came close to joining Tottenham Hotspur in the summer, but an agreement could never be reached between the involved parties and they ended up signing Giovani Lo Celso from Real Betis instead.