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Wednesday Kickaround

*Spain is ranked No. 1 in the world. Spain is the reigning European champion. Spain has won a world-record 15 straight matches. Spain is undefeated in 35 straight, tying the international mark. Spain hasn't conceded a goal in the Confederations Cup. Blah blah blah.....Spain-USA kickoff at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN and Univision, tape on ESPN2 at 11 p.m.

Bob Bradley: "We have to play our own football. When you play a team like that, and they're good with the ball, then when we have it, we're challenged to also be good with the ball. We have to have the ability to put their defenders under pressure. We have to have the ability to, in the right moments, be aggressive and create chances."

*Stuck at work with no direct access to the match? Follow the Insider's minute-by-minute updates and share your thoughts. We'll get started a little before kickoff.

*While the Americans are on the international stage, Mexico is on Atlanta's stage with a friendly against Venezuela tonight (7 p.m., Telemundo) at Georgia Dome. A crowd of 50,000 is expected.

*The second-place Washington Freedom can be seen on live TV today as well with a 7 p.m. WPS match at third-place Boston. Comcast SportsNet (Mid-Atlantic) will provide coverage. Following the game broadcast, CSN will show a 30-minute Freedom special.

*Is that SuperLiga thing over yet? Last night, Justin Mapp scored in the 35th minute of Chicago's 1-0 victory over Chivas USA at Toyota Park, keeping the Fire undefeated and the Los Angeles club winless in group play. In the other match, San Luis defeated Tigres, 3-1. Tonight in Foxborough, Kansas City vs. New England (7 p.m., Telefutura) and Santos vs. Atlas (9:30 p.m., Galavision).

*MLS tonight:
New York (2-10-4) at Toronto (5-5-4), 7:30 (Direct Kick)
Dallas (3-7-4) at Colorado (5-2-5), 9:30 (Direct Kick)

*Copa Libertadores semifinal (first leg) tonight:
Gremio at Cruzeiro, 8:30 p.m. (Fox Sports Espanol)

By Steve Goff  |  June 24, 2009; 9:27 AM ET
Categories:  Confederations Cup , Freedom , Libertadores , MLS , Mexico , Spain , U.S. men's national team  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Poll: United's MVP
Next: Matchday: USA-Spain

Comments

We can win this thing!!!

Posted by: 9Nine9 | June 24, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

*While the Americans are on the international stage, Mexico is on Atlanta's stage with a friendly against Venezuela tonight (7 p.m., Telemundo) at Georgia Dome. A crowd of 50,000 is expected.

----------------

MLS, are you watching?

Posted by: AtlantaMLS | June 24, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

I keep forgetting about SuperLiga.

Posted by: sitruc | June 24, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Didn't the US already lose to Spain once during the streak?

That means we get a pass, right?

Thx,

Jay!

Posted by: jayrockers | June 24, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Bunker, Bob.

Posted by: Ron16 | June 24, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

AtlantaMLS,

Of course they are watching. SUM is the group that puts on all Mexican national team events in the U.S.

Posted by: dcu4life1 | June 24, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

@AtlantaMLS -- if you're trying to make a point that there is a big market in Atlanta for MLS soccer, your reach exceeds your grasp. 50,000 to see the Mexican national team -- probably translates to about 8,000 for MLS. See Pizza Hut Park.

USA! USA!

I want to be in their number...oh, when the Yanks go marching in....

Posted by: fischy | June 24, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

"When you play a team like that, and they're good with the ball, then when we have it, we're challenged to also be good with the ball."

Tactical genius!!!

Posted by: joe_hill | June 24, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

50,000 in Atlanta tonight is great for Atlanta soccer. The question remains, for all MLS teams, can you reliably get 18,000 on a rainy weeknight in April / October against mid table MLS teams.

Have fun tonight...

Posted by: JkR- | June 24, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"Spain has won a world-record 15 straight matches. Spain is undefeated in 35 straight..."

June 24, 2009. This day is called the feast of Crispian.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 24, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

I can actually walk to the (Mexico-VZ) game tonight, but...I'm taping the US/Spain game, and that's more important.

Beside, I'll walk to the Milan-America game in a month.

Posted by: Reignking | June 24, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I predict Bob puts Altidore as the lone striker, and fields a lineup similar to that agains Italy (sans Beasley, although him and Klejstan are more likely to play than Torres or Adu). The LAST thing we should do.

We bunkered agaisnt Italy, and looked OK for a half. But Italy weren't on a hot streak, their offense was disjointed and slow. We are going to get creamed if we don't come out with the mindset we did against Egypt, we don't have a chance unless we can relieve pressure on the defense.

Basically, Spain can strike at any time, AGAINST ANY defense, bunker or no. We need to attack like hell, because that is our only chance for a result. 0-0 draw, or a 1-0 win AIN't happening, ever.

The 1-0 loss last time, yeah, they have gelled a lot since then, integrating David Silva, Fabregas, with Xavi leading, and have good understanding between Villa and Torres. If they can overcome Italy's bunker in the Euro's, we don't have a chance with pure defense. We don't have the defense or the midfielders for such a feat (Iraq, Egypt are better at it then us).

Players we need: Davies, Torres, Feilhaber, and PLEASE Adu. We need someone to pass around their defense.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | June 24, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

I'll be signing of now, as I won't see the match until later tonight on DVR. I'll be back with a vengeance tomorrow.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | June 24, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

My wild prediction: USA 2, Spain 1

Posted by: alan19 | June 24, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Bunker, Bob.
Posted by: Ron16 | June 24, 2009 10:03 AM
=====================

Bunker Bob? Bunker Hill.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 24, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

If Freddy Adu plays at all, it'll be in the waning moments of a lost game against Spain, and/or as a starter against South Africa on Sunday.

Posted by: Juan-John | June 24, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I think the point many of you are missing about Atlanta is that this is the first opportunity the city's soccer base has even had to show its strength. Many people doubt Atlanta's potential for understandable reasons...we've never had the chance...until now. This is the first major soccer game in Atlanta since the Olympics in '96. If you can use great attendance for the DCU-Real Madrid game in Seattle as justification for an MLS team, fantastic turnouts for Mexico-Venezuela and America-Milan can be used as well.

Posted by: AtlantaMLS | June 24, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

There have been occasional friendlies here, too, focused on the Latino residents, but none bigger than this -- in terms of teams and stadium.

Not a lot of advertising for this one, either -- at least in mainstream media -- but the story has gotten some traction on TV news and the AJC yesterday and today.

Posted by: Reignking | June 24, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

i am not that familiar with spain's national team. why haven't they conceded a goal? is it because their defense/goalie are excellent OR is it more of a function of their technical attacking abilities (i.e. keeping the ball away from their opposition) OR because teams are initimidated by them and won't attack?

Posted by: birdynumnum | June 24, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

birdynumnum: they played in an awful group that had to park the bus if they wanted to get any result.

Posted by: Reignking | June 24, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Birdy,

Spain is good, no doubt, but the group they played in certainly helped them with not giving up goals. South Africa, Iraq and New Zealand aren't exactly know for their explosive offenses.

Posted by: CrippledKeeper | June 24, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Sorry RK, same thought at the same time.

Posted by: CrippledKeeper | June 24, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Birdynumnum...Thats a hilarious name...Love Peter Sellers in The Party!

Birdy it also helps that Spain has probably the best keep in the world in Iker Casillas...

Posted by: alan19 | June 24, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

i am not that familiar with spain's national team. why haven't they conceded a goal? is it because their defense/goalie are excellent OR is it more of a function of their technical attacking abilities (i.e. keeping the ball away from their opposition) OR because teams are initimidated by them and won't attack?

Posted by: birdynumnum | June 24, 2009 11:00 AM |
---------------------------------------------

In fact, the reason is that Jair Marrufo has amassed quite a collection of jerseys from Spanish national team players. Not just Spain jerseys, either. They give him club team jerseys, too.

Posted by: fischy | June 24, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

If you can use great attendance for the DCU-Real Madrid game in Seattle as justification for an MLS team, fantastic turnouts for Mexico-Venezuela and America-Milan can be used as well.

Posted by: AtlantaMLS | June 24, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse
________________________________

I think we all can agree that the DCU/Madrid game in Seattle was a much different case than the Mexican National Team playing a friendly anywhere within this countries boarders. I'd love to see a breakdown of traveling Mexican/Venezuelan American traveling support for this match. I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't near half of that 50,000 total. The DCU Madrid game was scheduled only a matter of days before kickoff and it was a match that didn't involve the Mexican National Team or any other high profile Mexican franchise. It's intrinsically different. Bad argument.

Aside from that it's good to see that Atlanta has a big time soccer match. I just wouldn't read too much into it.

Posted by: pittmancb | June 24, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Next MLS expansion: Montreal and New York City.

Sorry, Atlanta.

Posted by: fischy | June 24, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

"Next MLS expansion: Montreal and New York City."

Can you imagine a 20 K seat stadium on Manhattan . . or any of the boroughs . . fantastic . .

Posted by: delantero | June 24, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

That's like imagining one in DC, delantero.

You know, the lack of expansion talk has been nice -- I like focusing on the success of Seattle and the two new franchises.

Posted by: Reignking | June 24, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

If we play up to our God given abilities and hustle, possess at a 45/55, 50/50 rate, switch fields when necessary in the attack and finish we can win 2-1. BB better put the right guys in to do it.

Posted by: Realness1 | June 24, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Can the US win? Sure, its soccer and crazy things can happen. It it likely the US will win or even draw and make it to penalties? Not really.

Even if the US plays a near perfect game, if Spain shows up and plays well (not near perfect, but well) the US loses by at least 2 goals. Face it, Spain has much better players, top to bottom, than the US. In order for the US to advance, you need a near-perfect game from BB's side and Spain to not play well. If both do not happen, then Spain wins, and likely wins rather easily, pure and simple.

That said, I really hope the US wins!

Posted by: therealfootball | June 24, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Atlanta is just a terrible town for pro-sports in general.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 24, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

From Dalian Atkinson to Stan Collymore, all English forwards that played in Spain were successful. See how they were sucessful? They were strong, fast, and good finishers.
Hope BB sees a pattern on how to score against the Spaniards.

Posted by: Charisma_Man | June 24, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

@CharmismaMan -- ummm. Strong, fast, good finishers. Sounds great. Know where Bob Bradley can get one of those?

Posted by: fischy | June 24, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I-270's Keys To the Match (cue fancy special effects and sounds)

1. Don't give away the ball in the defensive third, the middle third, the offensive third, or on corner kicks.
2. Don't try to get the Spanish players' autographs during the match.
3. Put the ball in their net more times then they put it in ours.

That's why they pay me the big bucks.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 24, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

flat four diamond and two. Onyewu and whoever in the back, Bradley at CDM, Donovan RWM, Adu at LWM, Feilhaber at CAM, Altidore and Davies or Dempsey up top.

Posted by: Realness1 | June 24, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

SportzNut21's Keys to the USA-Spain Match:

1. Ten men.

2. A keeper.

3. You play to win the game.

"Listen up, because I've got nothing to say and I'm only gonna say it once." -- L.P. Berra

Posted by: SportzNut21 | June 24, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I-270's Keys To the Match (Part II)

1. Steal stuff from the Spanish players' hotel rooms.
2. Accuse them of being with prostitutes after their last match..
3. Mira! Alli esta Sara Carbonero!

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 24, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

@Fischy: It would not surprise me if Casey started up front with Altidore. It could pose problems for the Spanish defense handling two big guys at the same time. Both can handle ground passes so we don't have to play the ball over the top to them. Casey has been playing well in MLS, but since Davies played very well last game I don't know if's BB is willing to risk the chemistry.

Posted by: Charisma_Man | June 24, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, the game plan is 'Believe in what we're doing on the inside'. According to Bob 'Second Coming of Lombardi' Bradley.

Howard

Spector Onyewu Demerit Bornstein

Bradley

Donovan Torres

Feilhaber

Dempsey Davies

To paraphrase Principal Skinner, "These kids have no shot at beating Spain...Prove me wrong kids, Prove me wrong!"

Posted by: daandre3 | June 24, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

I believe you'll find these are the exact same measurements as our gym back in Hickory.

Course if fans pulled out those plastic horns in Hickory someone would wrap them around their necks, but that's not important right now . . . .

Posted by: OWNTF | June 24, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

3. Mira! Alli esta Sara Carbonero!

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 24, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Carbonero a kind of chicken dish at Macaroni Grill?

Posted by: daandre3 | June 24, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Bradley: "What's wrong with you guys?"

Dempsey: "Coach, I can make it."

But is the picket fence allowed in football?

And my question of the day: Does Justin Mapp ever get lost?

Spain 3, USA 1

Posted by: joedoc1 | June 24, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

It might go without saying, but any positive result the US can hope to pull off against Spain will almost certainly involve Timmay Howard standing on his head in goal. Which still might not be enough, cuz I don't know if we'll score on these guys ...
Spain 1, USA 0

Posted by: mjhoya12 | June 24, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I think we're going to rattle Spain so much that they are going to pull Tretiak after the first period. We go on to score the late winner by a mystery sub late in the game who goes by 'Mike E.', who disappears into the circuit of inspirational speakers, never to been seen on the pitch again...

Posted by: daandre3 | June 24, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

To paraphrase Principal Skinner, "These kids have no shot at beating Spain...Prove me wrong kids, Prove me wrong!"


Classic!

Posted by: Realness1 | June 24, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I just found out that Dan Courtemanche went to high school around Atlanta and also went to UGA. Who knew? The high school he went to has a pretty good soccer history.

Posted by: soccerglue | June 24, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Spain: 5
US: 0

Spain is just too good... come on! Villa and Torres up top!

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | June 24, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Atlanta is just a terrible town for pro-sports in general.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 24, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse
______________________________________________

Here we go again. People spouting off about Atlanta who have no idea what they are talking about. I'm not sure how well Atlanta would do as a MLS town. I do know that Arthur Blank is a "can do" guy that would do whatever it took to succeed. I also know, despite what you and others say, the Hawks, which people crap on all the time, managed to outdraw so-called "sports towns" like Philly, DC, Jersey, and that hotbed of basketball, Indiana. And what about the Falcons? Despite coming off a year in which their star player went to Federal Prison, they still managed to outdraw teams like the Steelers, the Cowboys, and even "da Bears".

I enjoy engaging in lively debate, but at least bring something to the table besides the one time the Braves didn't sell out a Tuesday afternoon playoff game. It just doesn't work.

Posted by: SonicDeathMonkey | June 24, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

@Charisma

I'm assuming you left out Michael Owen on purpose? ;)

Posted by: SonicDeathMonkey | June 24, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

The last thing a fan loses is HOPE,

VAMOS ESTADOS UNIDOS Esta Noche tenemos que GANAR.....

Posted by: Norteno4life | June 24, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Micheal Cane - "What, you mean stay and finish the match?"
Pele - "Hatch, we need you"
Stalone - "Are you guys Crazy?"
Micheal Cane - "Hatch, if you go we all have to go, we can't go back out there without a keeper."

Well... if the US can challenge the Nazi's then maybe we can pull out a draw. Or maybe the team will escape from BB at halftime thru the Spanish sewers.....

Posted by: hacksaw | June 24, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Sonic:

Awesome response!

(I love Uncle Arthur)


STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER!

Posted by: JacobfromAtlanta-ish | June 24, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Atlanta is just a terrible town for pro-sports in general.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 24, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse


Oh here we go...the same tired argument. Did your grandfather teach you that one? Get a clue please.

Posted by: AtlantaMLS | June 24, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: I-270Exit1

June 24, 2009. This day is called the feast of Crispian.
--------------------------------------
And gentlemen in Teaneck, New Jersey now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here...

Posted by: EricB1 | June 24, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Is the game being replayed tonight on ESPN?

Posted by: FrancoNiell | June 24, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Oh here we go...the same tired argument. Did your grandfather teach you that one? Get a clue please.

Posted by: AtlantaMLS | June 24, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse
========================

No but he lernt me this one:

Bring the good old bugle, boys, we'll sing another song
Sing it with a spirit that will start the world along
Sing it as we used to sing it, 50,000 strong
While we were marching through Georgia.

Hurrah! Hurrah! we bring the jubilee!
Hurrah! Hurrah! the flag that makes you free!
So we sang the chorus from Atlanta to the sea
While we were marching through Georgia.

Posted by: OWNTF | June 24, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Per USSoccer Twitter

Howard; Spector, Onyewu, DeMerit, Bocanegra; Donovan, Clark, Bradley, Dempsey; Davies, Altidore - 4-4-2 with Los at left back

Posted by: JacobfromAtlanta-ish | June 24, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

USMNT soccer blog has the starting 11.

Bocanegra is in at left back. I wonder if he gets to wear the armband, or does Donovan keep it.

Posted by: osgoodfan | June 24, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

OWNTF, thats cold

Posted by: JacobfromAtlanta-ish | June 24, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Atlanta is just a terrible town for pro-sports in general.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 24, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse
______________________________________________

Here we go again.
Posted by: SonicDeathMonkey

Ha! That was exactly my first thought. Good response, too.

We (in Atlanta) aren't going to sit here and say that we know this city would be great for soccer, but there are pros and cons in the argument. One negative is the amount carpetbaggers here (like me!). But DC has more than enough of those, too (like me!).

Posted by: Reignking | June 24, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

we won si se puede

Posted by: WANAKO2000 | June 24, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

I predict USA will win this 2-0....

Posted by: fischy | June 25, 2009 1:19 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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