A gorgeous Sunday afternoon greeted the United States Mens National Team in Carson, California as they battled Panama and captured their first victory of 2015 with a 2-0 victory. The United States were led by goals from Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey and some timely saves from Nick Rimando. So what does this mean for our National Team?
1) Formations....So the "grand experiment" of the 3-5-2 went out the window in the Chile game and today the USMNT started some sort of a 4-4-2 or perhaps a 4-2-3-1. There was quite a debate as to what was played today, but the big takeaway was that the team had more success, as a whole in this match, then they did against Chile. Was it the right move to change formation against Panama? Honestly, the United States is better than Panama so it is tough to say that the formation had much to do with it.
2) Young Guys....There was a nice trend of seeing younger Lads get their chance with the full USMNT. Luis Gil, Perry Kitchen and Miguel Ibarra were able to get some time in this match. I was most impressed with Ibarra who put in a very solid shift and showed that he belonged in the discussion. He was able to move with and without the ball and put in a very competent shift. His statistics may not have been flashy, but it was a solid run out for the Minnesota United FC player.
3) Twas not quite a Rapids....There were three Colorado Rapids players that could have played today, and none of them saw the pitch. Gabriel Torres, Dillon Serna, and Shane O'Neill all had the chance to show today and none of them saw the pitch. While this is certainly disappointing from a Rapids perspective, there is a lot of positive that all three of them had a chance to play. And more importantly it was testament to the direction that the Rapids are heading in. Three of our most important players have a chance to play in an international friendly? Not too shabby.