October 13, 2012
US looks toward Guatemala in KC
NORTH SOUND, Antigua -- Next stop, Kansas City.
After playing on a small, rain-drenched field that wasn't in decent shape to begin with, the United States looks forward to returning home to play Guatemala in its final CONCACAF semifinal World Cup qualifier on Tuesday night.
The Americans (3-1-1, 10 points), who are tied with Guatemala for the Group A lead, need but a draw to clinch a spot in next year's final round.
“It's tough to gauge in this game how we can get better," said second-half substitute Alan Gordon, whose cross set up Eddie Johnson's 90th-minute game-winner in the 2-1 win over Antigua & Barbuda. "The field was difficult and it won't be like that in Kansas City. It will be a completely different game. We have to use our momentum, move forward and get three points.”
Midfielder Michael Bradley said he was looking forward to " great atmosphere" at Livestrong Sporting Park.
"A lot of us have enjoyed seeing the evolution of things to the point where now we can play a qualifier like this in our country and we can get on the plane tomorrow and know that it’s going to an American crowd, a great crowd and it’s going to be a fun night," he said. "It’s up to us to make sure the stuff on the field gets taken care of, but that is something we look forward to and we’ll get the job done.”
Captain and defender Carlos Bocanegra also looked forward in getting back to home soil in more ways than one.
“It’s difficult to play well down here," he said. "We did the same thing against Jamaica last time. We came back and had a good game in Columbus. It’s going to be a nice field, we’ll have the home crowd and be able move the ball around and get guys moving in and out of spaces. We put ourselves in a good position by getting this win tonight. It’s three points and sometimes in CONCACAF it’s like this, so on Tuesday night we’ll go out there on the front foot and get a win hopefully.”