In preparation for Mexico's game vs the US, we reached out to our sister blog, Stars & Stripes FC, for some intel on Jurgen's squad. Jason Longshore gave us the latest with the USMNT.
Typically, JK has a habit of not calling up "the best players" for the US. JCO is "guilty" as well for Mexico. Is this the most talented group of players JK could have called up?
I think so this time around. The biggest exception to that is not having Geoff Cameron available due to injury. Chris Wondolowski and Kyle Beckerman, two veterans that Klinsmann trusts, are also missing due to injuries. The biggest surprises on the roster are likely 18-year-old center back Cameron Carter-Vickers and Aron Johannsson. The latter returns after injuries derailed him for over a year. Carter-Vickers might be there just for experience, or he could be used as a sub to get him cap-tied to the U.S. rather than England. Jordan Morris' injury in the MLS playoffs saw Alan Gordon called in, which was a bit of a surprise.
If you go back and look at Adam's roster prediction (http://www.starsandstripesfc.com/2016/11/4/13515494/usmnt-roster-prediction-mexico-costa-rica-world-cup-qualifying), it's pretty accurate. That's not easy when it comes to a Klinsmann roster.
Mexico seems to be bringing one of their more talented squads to this game. Anyone in particular scare you?
Jesus Corona is a player that has always scared me, I don't know if the U.S. has a player who can stay with him when he's at his best. Some experts have him in their starting lineup, some don't, and it's always hard to tell with Osorio. Marco Fabian might be the key to this game. The U.S. will have to account for him in the attack, and that could tie up Michael Bradley and the central midfield.
How big of an absence will Clint Dempsey be? Is a resurgent Jozy enough to replace him?
Dempsey is one of the players who always seems to deliver in the clutch, that's something he brings to the table that will be hard to replace. The veteran leadership will need to come from Michael Bradley, but the offensive output will need to come through Jozy Altidore. This is the best sustained form Altidore has had in a long time, and he'll be a handful for Mexico's center backs as I'm not sure if they can mark him one on one.
If the US win it will be because of _________. If the US lose, it will be because of _____
Win because of: Solid defense, Altidore running riot through the Mexico defense, Sacha Kljestan creatively distributing to him, and feeding off of the crowd and conditions.
Lose because of: Shaky defense, getting overrun in midfield, and trying to force things. The U.S. will have to be patient and take what the game gives them
Will the "DosACero" streak continue? What is your prediction?
I don't think it will, I think the game will be tighter this time around and I'm not sure the U.S. can keep Mexico off the scoreboard. I do think the U.S. will get the win, but in a 2-1 final.
Bonus Question: Will we see Andres Guardado lineup for Atlanta United FC in 2017?
Yes, I think Atlanta does what it takes to get Andres Guardado on the field in 2017. The biggest question is if he will join the club in prior to the season or in the summer.
Thanks to Jason for the info.