Worry is beginning to set in following the United States Men’s National team’s defeat against Jamaica on Friday. Remember the rejoicing when the national team appointed Jurgen Klinsmann to manage the team? It seems long ago now. Maybe Bob Bradley wasn’t so bad after all. Bradley went 43-25-12 managing the national team, including winning the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup, finishing second in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup, and leading the team to the Round of 16 in the 2010 World Cup. Sure, it was aggravating at times watching the side continuously give up early goals and play from behind. The style could also be classified as boring. But sometimes boring gets results, and Bob Bradley got results.
Now Klinsmann leads the team. He was the trendy choice that was going to lead the Americans to victory playing his attacking style. The problem is, the team does not play that much different now than it did under Bradley and the results are not there anymore. The United States is 8-6-3 under Klinsmann. That is not many games to base a decision of whether or not Klinsmann is a failure, but it isn’t looking good for him.
Friday night, the United States lost to Jamaica and now the team’s future is uncertain. Qualifying for the World Cup is no longer a foregone conclusion. They are currently tied with Guatemala on four points and three points behind Jamaica. Only the top two teams in the group advance to the next round of qualifying.
On Tuesday, the United States will take the field against Jamaica again, but this time on home soil. If this isn’t a must-win game for the United States and Klinsmann, then I do not know what is. If they fail to win, and worse yet lose again, they run the risk of Guatemala overtaking them for second place in the group with only two games remaining. That would heap pressure on the team.
If Klinsmann is the coach we all thought he would be, he needs to gather his team and get their confidence back up before tomorrow’s game. Failure to qualify for the World Cup would certainly result in the resignation or firing of Klinsmann, especially considering Bradley was fired after reaching the Round of 16 in the World Cup. No matter what happens against Jamaica on Tuesday, the question still lingers: Are we better off with Klinsmann leading the team than when Bradley lead the team?
Written By: Eric Stoyanov, Contributing Writer, soccerprose.com
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