U.S.A. Soccer Headed to the Gold Cup


HOUSTON — Perhaps Landon Donovan is better coming off the bench after all.

Entering the match as a substitute for the second game running, Donovan’s inch-perfect pass found Clint Dempsey lurking at the far post in the 76th minute, and the U.S. attacker stabbed the ball home to give the U.S. men’s national team a 1-0 Gold Cup semifinal victory over Panama.

It was a vindication of sorts on a multitude of levels for the U.S. team. Manager Bob Bradley’s gutsy — and unexpected — decision to sit Donovan again paid off. Freddy Adu, seeing his first action of the tournament, also repaid his manager’s faith, by getting involved in the build up on the game-winner.

But bigger than any individual contribution was the fact that after some shaky performances in group play, including a previous loss to the Canaleros, the U.S. finds itself in its fourth consecutive Gold Cup final. It has by no means been the easiest of roads, but the Americans are exactly where they hoped to be at this stage of the tournament.

Clearly mindful of Panama’s threat on the counterattack, as well as the fact that the Canaleros were heavy-legged after being taken to penalties in their quarterfinal, the U.S. adopted its Death By 1,000 Paper Cuts offense in the first half. The Americans were perfectly content to possess the ball for long stretches and make Panama chase, even if it meant staying in their own half.

The rest here.

Most Popular


The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More

Billy Graham: Neither Prophet nor Theologian

Asked in 1972 if he believed in miracles, Billy Graham answered: Yes, Jesus performed some and there are many "miracles around us today, including television and airplanes." Graham was no theologian. Neither was he a prophet. Jesus said "a prophet hath no honor in his own country." Prophets take adversarial ... Read More
Film & TV

Why We Can’t Have Wakanda

SPOILERS AHEAD Black Panther is a really good movie that lives up to the hype in just about every way. Surely someone at Marvel Studios had an early doubt, reading the script and thinking: “Wait, we’re going to have hundreds of African warriors in brightly colored tribal garb, using ancient weapons, ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More