US U-23 Men Drop First Game Of Toulon International Tournament...
On the other side of the field Turkey fielded their U-21 "A" team and it showed. Play was fluid, passes were incisive and players showed skill on the ball.
Let's look at some highlights/lowlights.
Dominic Cervi started in goal and was ok. You can see why people are excited about him, he's huge. 6' 6" I think. He does look impressive in goal, but then he makes little mistakes that could cost the team in an important match. On one play in the first half he bobbled an easy shot and almost gave away a rebound that would have led to an easy goal. He recovered with the help of his defense.
Eric Brunner got a goal off a nice corner kick in the second half. You might imagine the big center back heading the ball home but the corner was driven low and he deftly put it away off his foot. It was a nice play and a nice goal. In other stretches of play he was unremarkable. He needs to get under contract somewhere soon if he wants to make the Olympics. I don't think he will as I bet one of the over aged players selected is a defender making the position more competitive.
Kamani Hill came on in the second half and helped settle the midfield. Benny Feilhaber and Greg Dalby were paired together to start the match and the pair were unable to control the pace of the game or direct traffic. Benny Feilhaber has gone from Senior national prospect to a big question mark. I don't know if his season in England was bad for him personally, although I'm sure relegation in such terrible fashion doesn't help self confidence, but this isn't the same player we were all so excited about last summer. In my opinion Feilhaber should come back home and play in MLS to regain his confidence. It worked for Landycakes.
Corey Ashe showed some nice speed on the left flank, and an ability to switch to the right without losing a beat. However, he disappeared for long stretches of the match. His speed could be nice coming off the bench but he didn't look like a starter today.
Gabe Ferrari and Sammy Ochoa worked hard but didn't inspire me to write positive comments. Ochoa did score a stunner in the second half to get the US back into the match but when he missed a great opportunity created by pressure and a Turkish mistake I was left scratching my head. Would Jozy have missed that opportunity? At this point neither forward makes my China squad.
Friday the US will face the Ivory Coast. Tune in to see the action live on FSC at 12:30 PM ET. I certainly hope to see a better team performance.