New England Soccer Today

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

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 1-0 CONCACAF Gold Cup Semifinal victory over Panama.

Tim Howard – Average Rating: 6.25 (Brian 6, Sean 6.5)

Tim Howard picked up a fairly easy shutout on Wednesday. (Photo by CHRIS ADUAMA/

Wasn’t really tested by the tired Panama players; could’ve done better to organize the backs late. (Brian) … Pretty easy night for Howard, but made a big save when called upon. (Sean)

Eric Lichaj – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5, Sean 5.5)
Liked what he did going forward, but didn’t really stand out on the attack. Defending was OK. (Brian) … Didn’t add as much offensively this match, but still kept his side quiet on defense. (Sean)

Carlos Bocanegra – Average Rating: 6 (Brian 6, Sean 6)
Yellow was harsh, but otherwise, looked very much the part of the capable veteran. (Brian) … Let Tejada through in one early mistake, but otherwise put in a very strong performance to lead the U.S. backline. (Sean)

Clarence Goodson – Average Rating: 4.75 (Brian 4.5, Sean 5)
Still not sold on Goodson, had some noticeable defensive lapses; burned on the late Panama chance. (Brian) … A better performance from Goodson, who looked a bit more comfortable out there. Still caught on a few mistakes. (Sean)

Steve Cherundolo – Average Rating: 6.75 (Brian 7, Sean 6.5)
Is there anything he can’t do? Having the tournament of his life; good crosses, smart runs, and sound tackles. (Brian) … The 32-year-old Cherundolo has been the most consistent U.S. performer throughout the tournament and continues to impress with his ability to add to the attack while not giving up much defensively. (Sean)

Michael Bradley – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5, Sean 6)
Decent performance, but should’ve gave the late Adu pass a go rather than defer; seems to be allergic to shots inside the box. (Brian) … Helped start the play that led to the U.S. goal and worked hard defensively all night. (Sean)

Jermaine Jones – Average Rating: 4.75 (Brian 4.5, Sean 5)
Off night; passes weren’t there, played right into Panama’s tactics. (Brian) … Decent distribution and runs in the first half, but struggled in the second. (Sean)

Alejandro Bedoya – Average Rating: 4.5 (Brian 4.5, Sean 4.5)
It was clear he and Dempsey weren’t on the same page; tried to do too much. (Brian) … Quiet night offensively. Never got much going offensively. (Sean)

Sacha Kljestan – Average Rating: 3.75 (Brian 4, Sean 3.5):
Didn’t even realize he was on the field until he got the hook at halftime. (Brian) … After a good performance against Jamaica, Kljestan looked lost on Wednesday.

Clint Dempsey – Average Rating: 5.75 (Brian 5, Sean 6.5)
Good finish on the goal, but suffered from an obvious lack of chemistry with Bedoya and Agudelo. (Brian) … Active as always going forward and took his goal well. (Sean)

Juan Agudelo – Average Rating: 4.75 (Brian 4, Sean 5.5)
Outmuscled by Panama’s center backs, and aside from the header off the bar, he was way too quiet. (Brian) … Played a role in a pair of early U.S. chances, but faded in the second half before being subbed for Adu. (Sean)

(sub) Landon Donovan – Average Rating: 5.25 (Brian 5, Sean 5.5)
Nice pass on the Dempsey goal, but had a sub-par game overall. (Brian) … Great set-up on the goal, but Donovan has struggled to make an impact off the bench the past two matches. (Sean)

(sub) Freddy Adu – Average Rating: 7 (Brian 7, Sean 7)
Game changer; brought energy, skill, and was astonishingly patient and cool with the ball. (Brian) … Adu was the best player on the pitch after coming on. Excellent, unexpected performance. (Sean)

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