U.S. Falters in Gold Cup Final

I really shouldn’t be bitter because the better team won. Mexico was faster, more explosive off the ball, and faster.  Did I say faster?  Mexico’s speed was an amazing contrast to just how slow our backfield (and pretty much everyone on the field) is in comparison.

On this day, and really until some significant changes occur within the U.S. program, this Mexico squad will be the superior CONCACAF team for the next World Cup buildup.

Going down 2-0 just pissed Mexico off, although I was going nuts in my living room, in stark contrast to the crap ‘home field’ advantage of playing in front of a pro Mexico crowd in the Rose Bowl.

I never expected the game to start like it did; I was just praying that we could hold the game in check for the first 15 minutes, settle down, and maybe get a chance. Instead, Mexico scored two in a row two times. After four straight goals it was more or less apparent that the U.S. has a long way to go.

Shades of the last Confederations Cup. Only this time we did not wait until the second half to let our opponent back into the game.

So what went wrong? Defense; lack of speed and closing ability. Losing one defender shouldn’t spell complete doom.

Defender Steve Cherundolo, who had played every minute of the Gold Cup for the United States, sprained his left ankle and left in the 11th minute. His disappearance seemed to take some of the focus out of the United States defense.

Are you f’ing kidding me? That is the understatement of the year. I like how Cherundolo has played (plus Cherrrrunnndoloooo just rolls of the tongue), and while I have not written about his consistent play, I had no idea how much he mattered to our shaky defense. Once he was out, it was really all she wrote.

It is not as if Cherundolo would be warming the bench of any major club teams, so it is sad to see such a shocking drop off in his sub. I wonder what the thought process was in bringing in Bornstein? Seriously; WTF was Bornstein doing out there? He was awful, as was the rest of the line and defensive midfield.

Bitter? Yes, but I should not have been, because in my heart of hearts, I knew this U.S. team was flawed, and will continue to be until we see some major changes.

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