There was plenty to feel good about for the U.S. men’s national team after last Sunday’s entertaining 4-3 victory over Germany in front of a capacity crowd at RFK Stadium.
Sure, Germany was far from full-strength for the friendly, but the U.S. showed an attacking verve rarely seen in the Jurgen Klinsmann era. Captain Clint Dempsey maintained his scoring ways, and Jozy Altidore broke out of his international slump at an ideal time.
In the grand scheme of things, though, the win means little, and the outcome of Friday night’s World Cup qualifying match in Jamaica means so much more.
The Americans take the next step on their quest to reach the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil in Kingston, where they’ll kick off a run of three qualifying matches in 11 days.
“It’s good to take confidence from this game, but we’ve got to make sure we get the job done in these next three games,” Dempsey said.
The U.S. will be looking to avoid what happened in the last trip to National Stadium in September, when Jamaica defeated the Americans for the first time ever in the semifinal qualifying round. Dempsey set a U.S. record by scoring 36 seconds into the game, but the Reggae Boyz fought back for a stunning 2-1 result. The U.S. exacted a bit of revenge four days later in Columbus, Ohio, winning the rematch 1-0 and eventually topping their qualifying group.
Following the match against Jamaica, the U.S. heads to Seattle on Tuesday to face Panama before wrapping up this stretch of games against Honduras on June 18 in Salt Lake City. Through the opening part of the CONCACAF hexagonal, the Americans are 1-1-1.