The U.S. National Team dropped a 2-0 result to Ukraine in a friendly played in front of a couple dozen people in Cyprus Wednesday. If you missed the game at work, you’re better off for it. As you can see in the GIF above — it wasn’t very pretty day for the U.S.
If there’s a silver lining, this was a one-off friendly without any real stakes so it’s not the end of the world or reason to smack the panic button … yet.
The downside? Nobody who played for the U.S. over the course of the 90 minutes improved their stock. Jurgen Klinsmann tried out a central defensive pairing of veteran Oguchi Onyewu and John Anthony Brooks. It worked about as well as a tuna fish and peanut butter sandwich. Brooks might have potential, but his positional awareness was lacking all game — as evidenced by the GIF above. If Onyewu, now 31, sees the field (or the roster) in Brazil … well … let’s not even pretend to envision that scenario.
If there’s any concern the U.S. were carved up by Ukraine’s wingers Andriy Yarmolenko and Yevhen Konoplyanka. The U.S. plays Portugal in its second group game at the World Cup and it just so happens to have a little player known as Cristiano Ronaldo.
It also wasn’t encouraging that the U.S. midfield — except for some spurts in the second half — didn’t do much of anything for the game. Maybe you can chalk that up to Ukraine’s players being emotionally charged up due to the political situation in the country, but it also doesn’t excuse of the U.S. players (cough, cough Clint Dempsey) from sleep-walking throughout the match. The only winners from the U.S. perspective were the MLS-based players not called into the game whose stock improved by default.
Much like the ill-fated shortcut the Simpsons took to Itchy and Scratchy Land, let us never speak of this match again.
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