KRIS LINDSAY - Saturday, October 12, 2013
In beating Jamaica the USA earned a perfect record at home during World Cup qualifying.
Even more encouraging was that the USA didn't allow a goal during the entire group and for the second straight cycle, it won the hexagonal tournament outright. The U.S will finish out the tournament on Tuesday against a desperate Panama team with everything on the line.
The 2-0 victory over the Reggae Boys, coupled with the Costa Rica loss against Honduras assures the United States of a first place finish in the Hexagonal, with one game left.
Here are the ratings for the game:
Howard 6.5 - Wasn't called on often, but came through when he was needed. His save on the end against Robinson was stellar.
Evans 6.0 - Wasn't beat as much as many thought by Jamaica's speed. He had a terrific clearance off the line.
Cameron 6.0 - Sound defensively, coupled with Besler to shut down the Jamaican attack.
Besler 6.5 - Has established himself as the premier USA center back. Was in control much of the game in the back.
Beasley 6.0 - Got forward in the attack some, nearly had a goal after picking Jamaica's pocket on an interception. Was sound defensively.
Jones 6.0 - Passing was subpar, but did well interrupting Jamaica's passing lanes.
Diskerud 5.5 - It took him a while to get into the play of the game, but in the end got the USA into great goal scoring positions. His spin move got the US into position to score on their first of the night.
Donovan 4.5 - Didn't make much of a presence in the match. He contributed to an out-of-sync midfield that succumbed to the high pressure of Jamaica, especially in the first half.
Bedoya 5.5 - Passing was poor, and had a hard time controlling the midfield against an over-matched Jamaica.
Johannsson 5.0 - Created space and got into great positions, but left a few missed chances on the field. Frustrating night, but clearly had energy and effort.
Altidore 6.0 - Passing was off in the first half. After the formation switch, Altidore was much more effective, and got into scoring positions a number of times.
Sasha Klestjan - 6.5 A bit unlucky not to have a goal, but was extremely creative and did well getting forward.
Graham Zusi 7.0 - Had immediate success after coming on, calmed down the confusion in the midfield, and got a decent goal in front of his home crowd.
Edgar Castillo 7.0 - Did very well pushing forward, kept his head up and found Jozy on the second goal. Had a magnificent run into the box and was unlucky not to tally one of his own.
Klinsmann 7.5 - Tried the 4-4-2 for the first half, and the beginning of the second half, and it didn't work. Credit the coach for changing the formation with his subs, which turned out to be the difference in the game.