BY: Justin McGee
If anyone had a question about who the best current USMNT player is, Friday night put that to rest. When Michael Bradley went down with an ankle injury in warm ups, it changed the whole complexion of the team and the game. Geoff Cameron was placed into his spot and his partnership with Jermaine Jones was highly ineffective. Before some of us even knew Bradley was injured we were down a goal,another one came minutes later. Costa Rica, apparently in any stadium is a tough place to win but down your best player and 2 goals in the first 10 minutes, it seemed impossible. A new found hope was discovered just before half with an awarded penalty, converted by Dempsey. After a good run of possession in the 2nd half devastation was struck in the 76th minute with the Ticos 3rd goal. In the process Altiodre, Cameroon, and Besler all picked up yellow cards meaning they will miss the next game due to accumulation.
That first paragraph was depressing to write, losing Bradley and Altidore is a big knock for sure. But if people think USA has issues heading into this game, Mexico has a catastrophe on its hands. After losing to Honduras, Mexico fired its manager Chepo De la Torre, currently sitting in 4th place they are fighting for their World Cup lives. That just adds to the magnitude of this match, which seems to be getting bigger and bigger each time its played. The hatred on and off the field is real between the two sides and their fan bases, and with a projected 9,000 in the supporters section, expect a fan atmosphere like no other. The Stars and Stripes may not be at full strength, along with the Bradley injury and the three suspended for yellow cards, young centerback John Brooks was sent back to Germany due to a agreement with his club. Brad Davis, Jose Torres, Clarence Goodson and Joe Corona all have been called in for support. If everything goes right we could clinch a spot in Brazil, but no extra motivation is needed when playing Mexico, expect a good one. Below is The Bold Predictor lineup for Tuesday huge clash against Mexico.
Defense: Parkhurst, Gonzalez, Orozco, Beasley
CM: Diskerud, Jones
Winger: Zusi, F. Johnson
Striker: Donovan, Dempsey
Espn starts off their coverage at 7:00pm et with kickoff coming a hour later at 8:00pm et. For all my local Tampa people I recommend watching this huge match at the American Outlaws: Tampa watch party.