Player Ratings: U.S. Men’s National Team vs. South Korea

After each match the contributors to New England Soccer Today will rate the performances of the United States National Team players who made an appearance on a 1 to 10 scale (1 horrendous, 5 average, 10 perfection). This week Brian O’Connell and Sean Donahue contributed ratings for the USA’s 2-0 win over South Korea.

Nick Rimando  - Average Rating: 7.25 (Brian 6.5, Sean 8)
Made nice goal line save early, and rescued his backline on a handful of occasions in the second half. Quality performance from a quality keeper. (Brian) … Made some great saves both on South Korean shots and his teammates’ errors. Has a #3 ‘keeper ever been more of a lock to go to the World Cup? (Sean)

Brad Evans – Average Rating: 3.5 (Brian 3.5, Sean 3.5)
Beaten early and often as Korea exploited the left flank. A step too slow too often. (Brian) … If the fullback positions were still up for grabs before the match, Evans certainly didn’t do anything to stake a claim for the spot being his. South Korea focused much of their attack down their left flank and Evans struggled with it. (Sean)

Omar Gonzalez – Average Rating: 5.75 (Brian 6, Sean 5.5)
His usual strong self in the air; at his best on Korea’s attacking set pieces, and often rescued Evans and Davis. (Brian) … Some shaky distribution out of the back early, but held up strong against Korea’s attack and in defending set pieces. (Sean)

Matt Besler – Average Rating: 5 (Brian 5, Sean 5)
Connected well with midfield early before passes through the midfield went out of vogue in the second half; sound game, made all the plays he needed to. (Brian) … Made a key sliding block to stop a dangerous South Korean attack and overall had a solid, if relatively quiet, game. (Sean)

Michael Parkhurst – Average Rating: 6.25 (Brian 6.5, Sean 6)
Padlocked the right channel by reading Korea’s attack well; passes often on point and played a smart brand of football throughout. (Brian) … Very strong game defensively and made smart, safe passes throughout the game. Limited a bit in what he could do offensively as a left back as far as crossing, but still made smart runs forward. (Sean)

Kyle Beckerman- Average Rating : 6.5 (Brian 6.5, Sean 6.5)
Best player in the midfield; directed traffic, held the ball at the right times, and took some of the spotlight off of a less-than-stellar Diskerud. (Brian) … What you’ve come to expect out of Beckerman in these types of games. Controlled the midfield acting as the connection between the backline and the attack, playing smart passes all afternoon. (Sean)

Mix Diskerud – Average Rating: 4.75 (Brian 4.5, Sean 5)
Displayed calmness and good vision early, but his form eroded as the game progressed; a non-factor in the second half, and tentative on the two chances he found inside the 18. (Brian) … Decent effort in the center of midfield, but didn’t have nearly the same impact as Beckerman and didn’t impact the attack as much as he’s capable of. (Sean)

Graham Zusi – Average Rating: 6.5 (Brian 6, Sean 7)
Good cross into box to Davis on the goal sequence, and strengthened the attack with smart runs and passes. Shame that he was forced to defend more in the second half. (Brian) … Continues to make a strong case for starting in the World Cup. Fantastic cross to set up the first goal and quality contributions to the attack all afternoon. Put in a strong effort defensively as well. (Sean)

Landon Donovan – Average Rating: 6.25 (Brian 6, Sean 6.5)
Showed his usual attacking instincts, but disappeared for stretches as backline started to lump balls forward in order to avoid Korea’s midfield. (Brian) … Played key roles in both U.S. goals. A few misplayed passes and not his most involved game, but his contributions to the final score couldn’t be missed. (Sean)

Brad Davis – Average Rating: 4 (Brian 4.5, Sean 3.5)
Not a good showing; struggled to get on the same page with teammates; dangerous passes emboldened Korea as game progressed. (Brian) … Fantastic effort to get on the end of Zusi’s cross and get an effort on frame that led to the first goal. After that, there weren’t many bright spots as Davis often didn’t seem on the same page as teammates and had far too many passes intercepted leading to dangerous chances for South Korea. (Sean)

Chris Wondolowski –  Average Rating: 7.75 (Brian 7.5, Sean 8)
Trademark Wondo performance; you forget all about him until he puts the ball in the back of the net. Two goals – both of the right place, right time variety – show that his knack for scoring is just as strong as it was during the Gold Cup. (Brian) … Finished both goals nicely and nearly had an assist with a dangerous low cross that was just out of the reach of Donovan. Didn’t get that many chances, but was extremely efficient with those he had. (Sean)

(sub) Clarence Goodson – Average Rating: 5.25 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5)
Put out some fires, and helped frustrate Korea in and around the 18. (Brian) … Solid job defensively holding off the Korean attack after Besler subbed out. (Sean)

(sub) Eddie Johnson – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5.5)
Gave the midfield some added stability with low-risk passes; too bad his teammates didn’t let him get many chances to go at goal. (Brian) … Helped the team keep possession after coming on, but didn’t get much of an opportunity offensively. (Sean)

(sub) Benny Feilhaber – Average Rating: 4.5 (Brian 4.5, Sean 4.5)
Really didn’t add much off the bench; made a couple of forays forward, but a non-factor for the most part. (Brian) … Failed to make much of an impact after coming on. (Sean)

(sub) DeAndre Yedlin – Average Rating: 4.25 (Brian 4.5, 4)
Looked flustered in his National Team debut; coughed the ball up in dangerous areas and seemed to force the issue too often. (Brian) … Really rough debut for Yedlin, but it’s understandable for a 20-year-old. Good to get the first experience under his belt. (Sean)

(sub)Luis Gil – Average Rating: 5.25 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5)
Didn’t look half bad in cameo; linked with teammates and showed composure. (Brian) … Didn’t have time to make much of an impact, but looked calm in possession. (Sean)

(sub)Eric Alexander – Average Rating: N/A (Brian 5.5, Sean NR)
Bolstered midfield despite finding few chances in the closing minutes. (Brian) … Not enough time to make an impact. (Sean)

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About Sean Donahue and Brian O'Connell

Sean Donahue has been covering the New England Revolution since 2002 for various publications. He hosted Revolution Recap, a weekly radio program covering the New England Revolution and U.S. Men's National Team from 2005-2008. He is a member of the North American Soccer Reporters, and can be reached via e-mail at nesoccertoday@gmail.com. Brian O'Connell has covered the New England Revolution since 2006, and has written extensively for the Associated Press, Revsnet.com, and New England Soccer News. He is a member of the North American Soccer Reporters, and can be easily reached at BOConnell21@aol.com.