a Sporting News report that contained a lot of criticism, attributed to players, about his way to run the program, German coach, under unreal conditions, went off with a needed 1-0 victory over Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifying match in Commerce City, Colo. to grab his first points of the Hex. The USMNT came to Denver to adapt to the high altitude they will face in Mexico next round and they had much more. They prove their worth and came out with an energized attitude after they showed good determination. There were no much tactical or technical factors to judge in a game where running, passing or tackling were a huge task but still USMNT showed to be able to battle through adversities both on and off field. In the conditions, all they had to do was win and the did it. By the way, this Snow Ball still told us that the central pair of Michael Bradley and Jermaine Jones could have a future. Clint Dempsey provided the game's lone goal in the 16th minute and well performed up top, such as DaMarcus Beasley did at left back. At the end, USMNT showed a collective display to get the job done. Next USMNT stop will be Mexico where will be no deteriorated field conditions to help them. The United States will face no snow next game against Mexicans.
Player grades: (0-10; 10=best)
G: Brad Guzan, 6 -- Started for the injured Tim Howard, he was solid and made no mistakes
under the difficult conditions.
D: DaMarcus Beasley, 7 -- First World Cup qualifier played over three years. He defended well and was also able to push forward. He had 98 touches and completed 58 passes.
D: Clarence Goodson, 7 -- A big effort in a questioned back line. Strength in the air and on the ground.
D: Omar Gonzalez, 6 -- Looked good enough.
D: Geoff Cameron, 6 -- He get his first start at right back, the position he held at Stoke City. He perfomed well enough.
M: Jermaine Jones, 6 -- The German-American was the symbol of the team's division during this week. He was solid, making good decisions and keeping possession.
M: Michael Bradley, 7 -- Anchored USA midfield with a solid performance in the center of the field.
M: Graham Zusi, 6 -- Struggle a bit but still played some nice and quick passes.
M: Clint Dempsey, 7 -- Played effectively as a true captain, scoring the game’s goal.
M: Herculez Gomez, 6.5 -- He did not blame playing as left wing and helping Beasley on the defensive phase.
F: Jozy Altidore, 6.5 -- Played as a pivot, using effectively his size.
M: Eddie Johnson, 6 -- Some nice touches after he replaced Zusi in 75th minute
M: Maurice Edu, NR -- On the game for Jones in 83rd minute.
M: Kyle Beckerman, NR -- Real Salt Lake midfielder replaced Gomez in the final minutes.