As the U.S. Men’s National Team licks its wounds from its disappointing 2-1 loss to Jamaica in the 2015 Gold Cup semifinals, the team must now look ahead to its third place game this weekend and a playoff for Confederations Cup qualification.
Following Wednesday’s match at the Georgia Dome, US Soccer gathered some of the top quotes from Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann, Captain Michael Bradley and goalie Brad Guzan.
• From Klinsmann
Thoughts on the match: “Obviously the team is disappointed, the fans are disappointed because you wanted to play the big final on Sunday in Philadelphia. It was a very, very good performance. I really told them at halftime as well, ‘Just keep playing like that, you’re going to get opportunities and sooner or later you’re going to put them in the net and we’re going to turn this game around.’ We lost this game with two set pieces that we conceded. It’s as simple as that. We had enough chances to put three, four, five in there. We didn’t do that, and that’s why at the end of the day we lost it.”
On sticking with center backs John Brooks and Ventura Alvarado: “I don’t regret it, not at all. On that header there, John came up a little too late, but he played an excellent game, and Ventura too. Now we have a couple of very, very good center backs that we keep building. They keep progressing and they will have a very intense competition between each other and going into the future. There’s no reason to criticize them for the game, actually the opposite. They were all over the place, they did their job and we came up short at the end of the day.”
What’s next?: “Finishing off in style Saturday in front of our fans, being third then and doing that with the right attitude and right approach. You owe that to fans and the tournament. Swallowing that pill, it’s not nice to swallow, but it is what it is, you can’t change that anymore. Then we keep building, we keep progressing, we keep working hard in order to go towards World Cup qualifying by the end of the year and it starts all over again.”
• From Bradley
On the Jamaica game: “Coming in we knew it was going to be a difficult game. Going down 2-0 in the first half makes it even more difficult. The response after halftime was good to try and get back into it, but unfortunately we couldn’t find an equalizer.”
What did Jamaica do to cause the U.S. problems?: “These games are never easy, like I said. Teams are committed to defending and closing down space, and obviously when you give away two goals off set pieces the task becomes even harder.”
Moving on from the loss: “That’s life. There’s no choice but to move ourselves forward. Obviously it’s a disappointment right now, that’s normal, but we’ll be back at it. There’s no other way to go.”
• From Guzan
What went wrong?: “I think from our point of view we obviously conceded two set piece goals and that left us a bit disappointed, but in saying that we had chances. We had quite a few chances, and on another day, maybe two or three of those go in and it’s happy days, but obviously that wasn’t the case tonight and that’s soccer.”
How does the team move forward?: “It’s obviously a disappointing loss. All the boys are upset, especially because we played some of our best football this game. We combined really well. We created chances we got forward, but ultimately just putting the ball in the back of the net just wasn’t to be tonight. It’s disappointing, but we’ll pick ourselves up. It doesn’t make us a bad team. It doesn’t erase a lot of the good stuff we’ve done. Just as when we beat Holland and Germany, a single game doesn’t define us. It’s a loss in a tournament that was very important for us, but now we’ve got to pick ourselves up and make sure we’re ready for the playoff.”