Things went from bad to worse for the U.S. Under-20's during their U-20 CONCACAF Championship campaign on Sunday.
Panama's U-20 side defeated Tab Ramos' squad 1-0 off a 79th minute goal from Los Canaleros' Carlos Small. The U.S. Under-20's are now 0-1-1 in their first two matches in Group A play after their disappointing 1-1 draw to Guatemala earlier this week. Despite their poor start, the U.S. squad needs only to finish in the top three in group play to have a chance to qualify for this summer's U-20 World Cup.
Galaxy Homegrown forward Bradford Jamieson IV started the match on the bench as the U.S. once again sputtered offensively against a Central American opponent. Jamieson was inserted at halftime with the U.S. struggling, but it was Panama who found the winner when Small capitalized on a ball over the top and placed it into the back of the net with a right-footed volley.
The U.S. return to action next Wednesday against Aruba and will then take on Jamaica on Jan. 18 before finishing up group play on Jan. 20 against Trinidad and Tobago.
Bradford Jamieson IV starts as U.S. U-20's suffer late 1-1 draw to Guatemala in U-20 World Cup qualifying
LA Galaxy Homegrown Player Bradford Jamieson IV earned the start and went 65 minutes as the U.S. Under-20's sputtered out of the gate in their bid to qualify for the 2015 U-20 World Cup with a 1-1 draw to Guatemala in their first match of CONCACAF U-20 Championship.
Head coach Tab Ramos gave Jamieson the start up top for the match against the Central Americans, but poor service saw the young American side fail to capitalize on several chances during the first half. The U.S. U-20's pulled ahead in the 58th minute when defender Cameron Carter-Vickers nodded home an Emerson Hyndman corner kick to give the Americans a lead. Guatemala found their equalizer late, however as FC Dallas Academy product Andy Ruiz scored off a stunning volley to give the Central American side a point in the Group A match.
The U.S. U-20 return to action on Sunday when they face their counterparts Panama before ending their group play with matches against Aruba next Wednesday, host nation Jamaica on Jan. 18 and Trinidad and Tobago on Jan. 20. The top team from Group A earns an automatic berth in the U-20 World Cup while the second through fourth place teams will compete in a playoff against their counterparts from Group B.
LA Galaxy fans will still need to wait about seven months until Steven Gerrard suits up for the club, but it's very apparent that the 34-year-old Liverpool FC legend will be in top form once he arrives.
On Friday morning during Liverpool's preparations for Saturday's match against Sunderland (4:45 am on NBCSN/mun2) at their training ground Melwood, Gerrard delivered an impressive left-footed volley that sailed into the back of the net.
Watch the goal above.
Excited to see what Gerrard will bring once he arrives? How closely will you be watching Liverpool FC's games now?
Share your thoughts below.
Jurgen Klinsmann says injury the reason that LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez omitted from USMNT January camp roster
Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes will be the LA Galaxy's representatives at the U.S. National Team's annual January camp, but there was one notable omission: USMNT defensive mainstay Omar Gonzalez.
Although there was some initial worry from the Twitterverse about why Gonzalez had been dropped, U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann told U.S. Soccer's official website that a nagging injury prevented the LA Galaxy defender from being included in the squad.
"When you put together the roster for January Camp, you eventually talk to the players, you talk to their club coaches and everyone is in a bit of a different situation," Klinsmann said. "The season here has a different schedule than overseas or in Mexico, and here and there you run into issues with players that you think it’s better if they maybe keep on curing some injuries, like in the case of Omar Gonzalez or Graham Zusi. They are not fully fit yet, so we decided to say ‘take it easy going into pre-season of your club team’."
UPDATE: Fox Soccer's Alexi Lalas provided an update on Gonzalez via Twitter saying that he is undergoing "proactive knee maintenance"
— Alexi Lalas (@AlexiLalas) January 9, 2015
Gonzalez enjoyed a strong year for the U.S. in 2014 as he appeared in his first FIFA World Cup while also making eight appearances for Klinsmann's side.
LA Galaxy Homegrowns Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes called up to the U.S. National Team's annual January camp
CARSON, Calif. -- Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes have officially gone from the LA Galaxy Academy all the way to the U.S. National Team.
Galaxy Homegrown Players Oscar Sorto and Gyasi Zardes were among the 28-man roster named by U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann for the team's annual January camp at StubHub Center from Jan. 12 to Feb. 8. The training camp will end with a pair of matches for the U.S. against Chile in South America on Jan. 28 and against CONCACAF rivals Panama on Feb. 8 at StubHub Center.
The call-ups will be the first from the senior team for both Sorto and Zardes. While Zardes carries no tournament experience, the 20-year-old Sorto was a member of the U.S. Under-20 squad during their participation in the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup.
The inclusions of youngsters like Sorto and Zardes are part of Klinsmann's stated goal of bringing in Olympic-eligible players as the USMNT looks ahead to not only the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup this summer, but also the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil. The U.S. Under-23's famously missed out on the 2012 Olympic Games in London which were won by CONCACAF archrivals Mexico.
“The prize in 2015 for the senior National Team is the Gold Cup, and this camp will give a lot of our players a chance to kick start their preparations for an important year,” Klinsmann said. “We also get an opportunity to introduce the next wave of young players into the program, and in particular work with many of our Olympic-age guys as they build toward qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.”
The complete U.S. roster is below.
GOALKEEPERS (4): Alex Bono (unattached), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Jon Kempin (Sporting Kansas City), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (8): Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Steve Birnbaum (D.C. United), Christian Dean (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Jermaine Jones (New England Revolution), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (out of contract), Dennis Flores (Club Leon), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution), Marc Pelosi (Liverpool FC), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew)
FORWARDS (6): Tesho Akindele (FC Dallas), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Julio Morales (Tepic), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Bobby Wood (1860 Munich), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)
Tab Ramos, Lynden Gooch and Bradford Jamieson IV discuss the team’s preparations and what to expect in their first match of the 2015 CONCACAF Championship against Guatemala.
In a special LA Galaxy Insider Breakdown, I look at how the LA Galaxy's new signing of Liverpool FC midfield can benefit the team and just where he'll fit.
Check it out above.
LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena on Steven Gerrard: "we want to get him pushed as close to goal as we can"
CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena spoke to reporters on Wednesday to discuss the club’s newest Designated Player signing of Liverpool FC midfielder Steven Gerrard.
Gerrard will remain with Liverpool until the end of their season and will be eligible to play when the league’s transfer window opens in mid-January.
Arena’s complete comments from the conference call can be found below.
(On how the Galaxy intend to rotate their midfield around Gerrard…)
ARENA: I’m not spending a whole lot of time on that right now. We have seven months or so until Stevie arrives here in Los Angeles, and we’re going to play out the process of our team, see how it moves forward, and see how we’re ready to utilize Stevie once he gets here.
(On how Gerrard relates to other European arrivals to MLS like Beckham and Keane…)
ARENA: I think that they have proven track records. They’re winners, they’re great people, they’ve been terrific leaders on their clubs previous to coming to the Galaxy, and their qualities speak for themselves. Stevie has the characteristics of David Beckham and Robbie Keane, he’s a terrific players, he’s of great character, a great teammate and a great leader, so I think he’ll complement our team in a very positive way.
(On Gerrard’s versatility in the midfield…)
ARENA: In my observation of Stevie over the years, he’s not only been a central midfielder, he’s played a little bit shaded to the left or right underneath the strikers, so he can play a variety of positions in midfield. My guess is we’ll play him closer to the forwards than our center backs. He’s a player obviously with very good attacking qualities and we want to get him pushed as close to goal as we can, when we can. So I think we can accommodate that through a variety of positions. It’ll take a little bit of time, but we’ll get it figured out by the time that Stevie arrives.
(On the criticism that Gerrard receives for being unable to track back…)
ARENA: Steven Gerrard is a great player. He played in the 2014 World Cup, he plays for one of the top clubs in England… He’s got great experience, great understanding of the game; he’s quite capable of playing on both sides of the ball. I believe he’ll be a very good player for us in MLS.C
(On if Arena will manage Gerrard’s minutes…)
ARENA: I will manage his minutes. I’m going to try to get him on the field as much as possible.
(On the process to sign Gerrard…)
ARENA: First of all, I think Stevie did his homework, he was well aware of MLS and the Galaxy. He’s been here a couple of times, obviously with Liverpool, so he knew Southern California and L..A. He understands MLS, so there weren’t a whole lot of questions and he’s obviously been aware of Beckham and Keane at the Galaxy. But on and off over the years, Stevie’s always been a name that we’ve examined as a potential player to come to the Galaxy, and obviously over the recent months we’ve obviously pursued the player… Over the last two or three weeks, things came together pretty quickly.
(On if the Galaxy had other options…)
ARENA: We were looking at three or four players over the last three or four months, and obviously, Stevie was there all along. I would say that I thought it was going to be a longshot to acquire Stevie, but as we got closer to the year, interest on both parties picked up, and we were very fortunate to be able to secure a deal.
(On how Keane and Gerrard will combine…)
ARENA: They’re two outstanding players. They’ve played together before, they know each other, and I think in a short period of time they’re going to be able to have a great understanding of each other, and I’m quite confident that we’ll see they’re going to be able to help create chances for the LA Galaxy.
(On Robbie Keane’s input in the Gerrard signing…)
ARENA: To be honest with you, I have not spoken to Robbie Keane about this. Maybe a month or so ago, I let him know we were talking with Stevie, but we didn’t talk about how he fit in with the team and everything else. I just acknowledged the fact that Stevie was a player that we had an interest in.
CARSON, Calif. – The signing Steven Gerrard represents a major addition for the LA Galaxy, but just where does the Englishman fit in an already stacked LA midfield?
The Galaxy lifted their fifth MLS Cup on the strength of one of – if not the best—midfield in Major League Soccer which was anchored by the Brazilian tandem of Juninho and Marcelo Sarvas. Meanwhile on the flanks, a hodgepodge of Landon Donovan, Baggio Husidic and Stefan Ishizaki provided width to a Galaxy attack that scored a league-high 69 goals during the regular season.
At the height of his powers, Gerrard was one of Europe’s best midfielders with ability to not only provide defensive cover, but also create chances on his own due to his unparalleled work rate. In more recent times, Gerrard has settled into a holding midfield role that has allowed him to orchestrate from deeper in the parking and use his pinpoint passing to open up chances for teammates across the field.
Considering that at 35, Gerrard does not have the same engine that he had at his peak, Bruce Arena may opt to use the Englishman in defensive midfield capacity ala David Beckham in his final two seasons with the club.
What does Arena himself think? Well, the Galaxy head coach and general manager isn’t focusing on it just yet.
“I’m not spending a whole lot of time thinking about that right now,” said Arena during the team’s media availability after announcing the signing. “We have seven months or so until Stevie arrives here in Los Angeles and we’re going to play out the process of our team. We’ll see how it moves forward and see how we’re ready to utilize Stevie once he gets here.”
But now I’ll give you an option to predict the Galaxy’s next midfield. Below are a series of midfield combinations and I’ll allow you to decide which midfield you’d like to see lineup when Gerrard arrives. Obviously, the list is hardly exhaustive so add your own midfield combos in the comment section beneath.
It's officially official. Steven Gerrard is a member of the LA Galaxy.
The club announced on Wednesday morning that Gerrard will be joining the club upon the conclusion of Liverpool FC's 2014-15 English Premier League campaign and will be eligible to play for the club when the transfer window opens up in July. Per club and league policy, the details of the contract were not disclosed.