USA v Mexico Player Ratings

USMNT vs Costa Rica March 22nd 2013 USMN:1 Costa Rica:0

US made two changes to the line up from Colorado

USA v Mexico Player Ratings

1-Brad Guzan 7/10: The Villa keeper had his first action on 21 when he comfortably held a tame Giovani drive. Came out bravely for a cross on half time and was bundled over by Zavala. Guzan dropped the cross under pressure but stayed upright to block the rebound although he had rightly won the free kick. A hacked clearance was the most work he had to do in the second half despite mammoth Mexican possession, until a late punch, and a fantastic save down low to his right which considerably upped his mark.

20-Geoff Cameron 8.5/10: Headed USA’s first corner wide which was just as well as he was penalized with a soft foul award which would have caused any goal to be unfairly disallowed. Probably to blame for leaving Zavala unmarked at a first half Mexico corner. Although he looks gangly, good interceptions and wee nicks of the ball were as likely to be made by him as any American. Who would ever suggest he’s not a defender now?

7-DaMarcus Beasley 7.5/10: Wasted early possession with an overhit 4th minute cross. He made up for it with a superb tackle on Aquino inside the penalty area three minutes later. Seconds later received an unfortunate yellow for a push just outside the area. He had to be careful for 83 minutes when marking Aquino.

He gave away a needless corner on the half hour, Mexico’s eighth. Was hampered by that early yellow and stood off a few times and it was clear by the hour mark, he needed to be replaced. Luckily, the supply to Aquino began to dry up giving him valuable recuperation time. A key interception in 69 validated Klinsmann’s decision to keep him on longer. He was limping by the 72nd minute and lucky to have Brad Davis protecting him.

That said, he has to be admired for persevering through the pain and not forcing Klinsmann to use up a substitute on him.

3- Omar Gonzalez 9/10: The three week training in January camp with Besler looked valuable early as they didn’t start with zero knowledge of each other. Made some good early clearances and a good read in 38 which broke up a key Mexico attack which threatened to disrupt the USA’s first decent period. A key interception after Beasley failed in the tackle again in 54.

Another good tackle in the second stuffed up a Mexican breakaway. Followed by yet another on 63′, in which he timed a challenge in the penalty area. In the air and on the ground, Gonzalez will have made half his family very proud and the other half as proud as they are frustrated. A splendid performance.

14-Matt Besler 8.5/10: In for his second cap due to a hamstring injury to Clarence Goodson, the Sporting Kansas centre half took an early yellow for a needless push on Giovani leaving 70 minutes to play on a yellow. Adapted well to being on a yellow for the remainder of the half. Early in the second, he had to make a play to a cross from the right and was happy to see the ball go behind for a corner. In his defence, leaving it was not an option.

Made his fair share of interceptions and looked far from out of his depth at this level, and played Chicharito offside smartly by pulling up. Made the vital defelection to block a shot in 68.

His 87th minute airshot nearly allowed Chicharito in, perhaps Besler’s worst moment of an otherwise good performance. Clearing a late fee kick commandingly with his head made up for it.

This is the day where Matt Besler rose from being a decent MLS hopeful to an international class defender. Outstanding.

Omar Gonzalez

Omar Gonzalez looked commanding in defence

6-Maurice Edu 6/10: An early push me/pull you with Chicharito at a Mexico corner was a statement of intent for the man replacing Jermaine Jones.

Was very lucky not to concede a penalty after Javier Aquino got in front  of him. His poor decision to lunge in anyway could have undone all his teammates’ hard work 13 minutes from reaching its fruition.

He got away with it but for one of the more experienced US players in a young team to make that error was not acceptable.

4-Michael Bradley 6.5/10: Lucky not to concede an early penalty which the linesman appeared to give. He was perhaps saved by Chicharito’s outrageous dive to emphasize it. You’d expect a home side to get those.

With two colleagues on a yellow, he took on more of the tackling duty. Deprived of a shooting chance after a move involving Edu, Dempsey and Altidore by a fine tackle. His second half was strangely quieter but his willingness to harry and accept responsibility were good.

19-Graham Zusi 7/10: (off in 81′) He found it hard to get involved early. Produced a fine tackle to stop Guardado from the right back area and his work rate was outstanding although he was mostly chasing the play. Produced a superb defensive header after a 40 yard run to deny Mexico a free header. There was very little opportunity for Zusi to show his non defensive side.

8-Clint Dempsey 6/10: 15 minutes had gone when he won a corner in his first action. It took 16 before he was involved again and he lost the ball easily. Did well with his occasional defensive duties. A pitiful long range effort in 52 was worth a try but half hearted. His lack of possession was hardly his fault but he can;t get a high mark for relative inactivity.

9-Herculez Gomez 5.5/10: Took the corner which provided Cameron with a header. The Stoke defender headed wide and conceded a free kick but it looked dangerous. He totally wasted the second in 24 with altitude no excuse for the Mexican league player. (off in 70′)

17-Jozy Altidore 5.5/10: A neat 37th minute one touch pass to Bradley was his first meaningful involvement. Only a smart tackle by Torres Nilo stopped the move, USA’s best of the first half, coming to more. His holding up of the ball was not great and he could have shielded his side better than he did on the rare occasion he had a chance. His removal for Johnson who has been doing that task well for his club reflected that. (off in 55′ for Johnson)

18-Eddie Johnson 6/10: (on in 55′ for Altidore) His first burst of pace beat Meza but his cross was poor. He did a little better when given snippets of possession than the man he replaced. Made a decent case that he might be worth a start when the World Cup comes to his home ground in June.

13-Brad Davis 5.5/10: (on in 70′ for Gomez) The Dynamo midfielder did a good job protecting the exhausted Beasley. Not a wise decision to tackle from behind to give Mexico a stoppage time free kick.

11-Brek Shea (no grade): (on in 81′) Shea was a surprising candidate for Klinsmann’s third substitution when he replaced Zusi. Brad Davis moved right to accommodate him.

Also See:

Mexico 0-0 USA — Defense and (Indefensible?) Referee Saves Americans

Mexico v USA – Tactical Analysis

Landon Donovan Joins LA Galaxy to Visit Obama at White House

Full Round up of European World Cup Qualification

1 Panama 3 1 2 0 5 3 2 5
2 Costa Rica 3 1 1 1 4 3 1 4
3 USA 3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
4 Honduras 3 1 1 1 4 5 -1 4
5 Mexico 3 0 3 0 2 2 0 3
6 Jamaica 3 0 2 1 1 3 -2 2

About Author


  1. SounderForever on

    Like what you did with your ratings…

    I want to give a shout out to Besler. The guy had a pretty damn good game. At no level have I seen a guy intercept more dangerous passes then he did tonight. I lost count at 3, very critical through balls. I haven’t seen that in any pro game. He had a very fine game overall outside of that too.

    He didn’t get forward at all. That is making me think that maybe we might have something figured out here. A guy that will always stay home, and is really good on defense. I’d like to see more games with this guy in them.

  2. Shawn Wheeler on

    I think you missed the boat here with Bradley. He was man of the match in my mind. Controlled the central midfield for much of the game, had great distribution and was a very calming presence.

  3. It was a horrendous dive he took.

    The good news is that Manchester United still got a penalty for it.

  4. What match were you watching? While the result was good, some of the performances were not.

    Beasley was horrific. Got beat constantly.

    The big problem was the outside mids, Zusi and Gomez. They were beaten time and again with cuts from outside the 18 to the inside. What the replay. They are standing while their man races by and then follow him by 2-5 yards into the box–if the Mexican wings passed well, we lose by 3 or more goals.

    Lastly, since when is kicking the ball down the field to the other side a good thing? Time after time, long kicks rarely won by the US. We have the ball at midfield, base backward and backwards and finally to Guzan, who belts it down to Mexico–better to have done this from midfield..