Game week

With the USMNT back in action this weekend @ Slovakia in their first warm-up match since qualifying last month, I thought it would be a good time to get writing again.

First and foremost...the game is this Saturday, 11/14 @ 10 AM EST on Fox Soccer Channel.

It would be a surprise to see this team come out with a win for a few reasons. Slovakia was the automatic qualifier from their group and while most of their players aren't recognizable to most American soccer fans, they have an excellent showing within the Bundesliga and scattered throughout other Eastern European leagues.

BB has also not brought in his A team, which is understandable and probably for the better. The major omissions include probably the two most valuable national team pieces in Landon Donovan and Tim Howard.

Unfortunately, despite last week's call up, Edgar Castillo will not make is USMNT debut against Slovakia. Hopefully we will get a chance to see him against Denmark on the 18th.

With Jay Demerit and Oguchi Onyewu still sidelined, it will be interesting to see how the defense reacts.

In light of Charlie Davies' accident there is a chance for Jeff Cunningham and/or Eddie Johnson to make a splash upon their return to the national team. Both have to be seen as having a chance at spot but will have to earn it. A little disappointed not to see Kenny Cooper on the list but once again, that makes it more likely he'll get time against Denmark.

I will have a more complete breakdown later this week; seriously this time.

Back to Charlie Davies and his status. Based on some of his teammates tweets in the twitter-verse, and the traditional outlets, he seems to be doing better and is on what will probably be a long road to recovery.

US Soccer has to feel as if there is no shot he participates next summer and they must figure out how to compensate. Personally, I think the best option is pairing Jozy Altidore upfront with Clint Dempsey. Dempsey has shown an eye for goal and his creativity can get a little lost on the wing. He doesn't have the pace to beat most defenders with pure speed, so why not make him the 2nd striker. His creativity would probably serve Altidore well and Dempsey's inclination to shoot from outside the area also has to be appreciated. His control is also probably the best of the bunch and that can go a long way in winning penalties, see Fulham v Wigan, 11/8/09.

This was my point of view even before Davies went down so I think it is the logical progression.

There is also enough depth on that right hand side to move Dempsey forward. Pace? Stuart Holden. Control/creativity? Feilhaber.

Random Note...

The original topic for this blog, Marcus Tracy, scored his first goal of the Danish season in a rare start on Saturday. It was his team's only goal and secured them much needed 3 pts.

With the lack of attacking options for the US, is there a single good reason why he shouldn't be in the 22 for the Denmark friendly?

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