September 3, 2014
SOME FRESH FACES
U.S. earns 1-0 win to start next four year cycle
PRAGUE, Czech Republic --- Midfielder Alejandro Bedoya scored a 39th-minute goal, Nick Rimando made four saves in the second half and the U.S. Men's National Team earned a 1-0 victory against the Czech Republic at Generali Arena Wednesday.
Jurgen Klinsmannís new look U.S. team featured three players, Joe Gyau, Greg Garza and Emerson Hyndman who earned their first caps as the team enters a new four year cycle ahead of the 2018 World Cup in Russia. While there were several World Cup veterans on the squad, Klinsmann used a relatively inexperienced team as he starts looking ahead.
Bedoya, who played all four games during the 2014 World Cup in Brazil scored his goal in after Czech Republic midfielder Vladimir Darida lost the ball in the midfield on Peter Cech's distribution. Max Diskerud collected the bal and worked in into the penalty area, taking a shot that Cech stopped. The rebound went out to Bedoya who put it past defender Michal Kadlec into the open net.
Gyau, the son of former U.S. National Team member Phillip, created the first legitimate scoring chance for either side by fending off Czech Republic midfielder Petr Jiracek and shooting with his right foot from outside the box. The rolling shot was headed to the right side of the frame, but Cech made the gameís first save.
The Czech put pressure on the U.S. defense. In the 26th minute, Vaclav Pilar swung the ball to the left side to Ladislav Krejci. Krejci had open space to cross a dangerous ball back across the edge of the six-yard box, but John Brooks intercepted it with a sliding, left-legged stop as the USA eventually cleared.
Six minutes later Vaclav Pilar took a 20 yard that staring goalkeeper Brad Guzan dove to his left to stop for his only save.
Rimando, made several big saves in the second half to keep the U.S. in the game and help preserve the win for Guzan.
In the 60th minute, Czech Republic captain Tomas Rosicky's chip over the USA defense went to Krejci on the left side of the box, and Krejci fired toward the far left post, but Rimando reacted quickly with a left-footed save.
Five minutes later, after a scramble when the ball ricocheted between a pair of USA defenders, Vladimir Darida fired from close range in the middle of the box. Rimando batted away Darida's strike at the near right post to maintain the one-goal lead.
Rimando came up with two big saves in the final minutes, first turning away a right footed shot by Radim Reznik that he played on a short hop in the 85th minute. Then in the 89th minute, Rimando adjusted his body to deflect a close-range shot by Daniel Pudil.