US 4 Grenada 0 / US 2 Honduras 0 / US 2 Haiti 2
Photo by ISI Photos
The US, fielding a roster of mostly second and third choice players, won its group and qualified for the Gold Cup quarterfinals on the strength of two wins and a tie. Manager Bob Bradley has chosen to use the tournament to give fringe players a chance to impress. For those who have not seen the matches, you have not missed much. Unfortunately everything about the tournament has been second-rate: the opponents were weak; two of the three games were on artificial turf; and the games are only available on Fox Soccer Channel and Telefutura.
A handful of first-team players have made appearances. Benny Feilhaber and Charlie Davies appeared as substitutes in the game against Honduras and both were clearly a step above everyone else on the field. Almost from the moment they entered the game it was clear why they are first-team players and players like Freddy Adu, Logan Pause and Brad Evans are not. Before returning to their club teams this week Heath Pearce and Steve Cherundolo patrolled the fullback positions. Both were excellent as you would expect players with their experience to be in less challenging circumstances.