It was a disappointing result for the U.S. as they fell, 1-0, at home against an experimental Costa Rica squad guided by an interim head coach.
And it was former D.C. United defender Rodney Wallace, who was an All-Met Player of the Year at Bullis and played for Maryland, who scored the winner on his international debut for Costa Rica.
Video of Wallace’s game-winner:
No matter what way you look at it, the American have to feel that they should win these games.
After the game, new U.S. Coach Juergen Klinsmann told ESPN, “for sure not happy with the result, but happy with the performance.” So let’s take a step back and analyze that a bit.
The U.S certainly played with a pace in possession that has been rarely seen from this team. That was on display mostly during a 30-minute period in the first half. U.S. didn’t finish, though, with Landon Donovan’s first half miss the most glaring.
While some players shined (Jose Torres), others showed tonight that they may not be ready for the international stage (Edgar Castillo).
This is only the second game under Klinsmann, and frankly the entire roster has not yet been together. Clint Dempsey and Donovan have yet to be on the field at the same time. Stuart Holden is getting healthy. Michael Bradley wasn’t here.
It was a negative result, and it was just a “pretty good” performance.
In the next few months as Klinsmann begins to get a better feel for his national pool, U.S. fans will hope to see some changes, some improvements and – most importantly – some results.
For player ratings...
Tim Howard: 7.5. He didn’t have much to do and nearly kept out the only goal with a spectacular initial save and then a deflection of Rodney Wallace’s goal.
Timmy Chandler: 6. Pretty solid at right back. Not spectacular, a tad shaky at times, but still a good fit there for the U.S.
Michael Orozco Fiscal: 5. Spacing and movement were just ok, he was composed in distribution, but lack of experience showed at times.
Carlos Bocanegra: 5.5. You know what you’re going to get out of the captain. He managed the young back line, didn’t make any major mistakes.
Edgar Castillo: 3. Another poor outing from Castillo. His thinking is too slow, he holds the ball too long and loses it too often.
Break Shea: 7. Not as dynamic as his first game under Klinsmann, but plays aggressively and causes problems for defenders.
Jose Torres: 8. Best player on the field. His distribution was fantastic, he seemed in control, he got stuck in on tackles. Strong, strong showing.
Robbie Rogers: 4.5. Largely invisible, lacked good service and failed to make an impact on the wing.
Landon Donovan: 5.5. Does so much it’s hard to grade him lower than this, and maybe it’s on his own scale. Didn’t finish, wasn’t himself, but still works hard and provides calm.
Jozy Altidore: 6. Solid up top. Did a nice job holding the ball as the lone striker. Didn’t get any chances on goal, though.
Sacha Kljestan: 5. Had little impact upon entering. U.S. was struggling at the time and never got back to first half form.
Juan Agudelo: 6. The kid works his tail off and creates opportunities. Took guys on in box. Best when paired up top, not as lone striker.