September 11, 2012
Bocanegra, Cherundolo to start for USA
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Two U.S. veteran defenders who did not play Friday will start against Jamaica in Tuesday's (8pm ET ESPN/Galavision) World Cup qualifier vs. Jamaica -- team captain and central defender Carlos Bocanegra and injured right back Steve Cherundolo.
|Team captain Carlos Bocanegra will back in the U.S. lineup Tuesday night.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
Bocanegra started the season with Rangers, who were demoted to the Scottish Third Division, recently transferred to Racing Santander (Spain). Klinsmann said he decided to keep Bocanegra out of Friday's game because he did not have his playing rhythm.
"He totally understood our decision," U.S. coach Juergen Klinsmann told reporters at a Monday press conference. "It had to do with his last couple of weeks as well as with our Mexico game where we tried out new things. We were very pleased with what we saw in Mexico. But he is back in the team, Steve is back in the team fortunately."
Klinsmann reiterated what led to the U.S. defeat -- a pair of free kick goals -- by Rodolph Austin (23rd minute) and Luton Shelton (66th minute), both just outside the penalty area.
“We gave away cheap free kicks and lost the game based on that,” Klinsmann said. “You can’t blame the backline for it. You can’t blame tactical reasons or whatever. You weren’t sharp enough there to avoid free kicks and you paid the price for it.”
Indeed they did, which is something Klinsmann did not want to see duplicated at Columbus Crew Stadium on Tuesday.
“Step one, you don’t want to give [free kicks] away,” he said. “Step two, a little bit more organization in the wall. Every time you analyze a free kick, you read the wall. Who jumps up how? Who’s really tense? Good body tension has this kind of hunger to block the shot. You see people jumping up. You see people don’t jump up. You can have a whole half-hour discussion about a wall.”
The U.S. (1-1-1, four points)faces a must-win situation against Jamaica (2-0-1, seven), which leads CONCACAF Group A.
"We didn't get the result we wanted in Jamaica which puts us in a position that we have to get those points back and we want to desperately do that tomorrow night against Jamaica," Klinsmann said. "Training has been good, very focused and sharp. I think we discussed enough of the things that didn’t go so well in Jamaica and doing other things better than we did in Jamaica. I think we're all ready."