Player Ratings: U.S. Men’s National Team 1-0 Paraguay

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER.

Ratings by PATRICK MacDONALD
Written by DAVE MARTINEZ

Done biting your nails? We are sure it was all worth it.

Despite enjoying the better of play against Paraguay, a DeAndre Yedlin red card early in the second half looked destined to derail the American’s delicate 1-0 lead.

Instead, John Brooks, Brad Guzan and company stood tall against the Paraguayan attack, preserving the lead, earning the win — and booking the USMNT’s ticket to the quarterfinals.

While the processing of the match continues, let’s look at how the players did on an individual level:

STARTING XI

Brad Guzan (8): For all the consternation about Guzan heading into the tournament, he has been one of the most reliable contributors for the USMNT. His double save preserved the win.

DeAndre Yedlin (4): Not even Klinsmann will defend the two yellows against Yedlin. Showed his age and immaturity, capping off an impressive group stage with a childlike fit.

Geoff Cameron (7): Solid once again at centerback, though his propensity to push forward left Brooks as the lone defender on several occasions.

John Brooks (8) – EoS MotM: More than Guzan, Brooks was the biggest reason Paraguay struggled to score. He was perfect in the air, physical against the attack and a leader on the night.

Fabian Johnson (7): Another strong performance from Johnson. Nothing too noteworthy, but that is what happens with dependable defenders.

Michael Bradley (7): Yes, Bradley had several errant passes on the evening. However, he led when it counted, along with the rest of the USMNT vets.

Jermaine Jones (7): Jones was everywhere for the USMNT, killing plays and pushing the offense forward.

Alejandro Bedoya (6): Didn’t make an impact, but wasn’t terrible in a shuttler role. Need to see more from him on the offensive side.

Bobby Wood (5): The youngster grew frustrated as the match went on. Could not shake his markers. Needs to find his role in the offense — not just be the streaky striker opening the defense.

Clint Dempsey (7): Another strong performance this tournament. Dempsey may not have the wheels of old, but his leadership and intelligence under Wood helped the U.S. keep Paraguay honest.

Gyassi Zardes (5.5): If not for a killer assist on the only goal of the evening, Zardes would have easily earned the lowest rating of the starting XI. His first touch is horrible. His instincts, questionable. If not for his speed, he would be on the bench.

SUBS

Michael Orozco (6): No mistakes in an emergency role. Yedlin put the U.S. behind the eight ball, but Orozco managed to make that mistake a passing memory.

Graham Zusi (6): Solid performance off the bench. Came up with several defensive stops.

Kyle Beckman (-): Not enough time on the field for a rating.

COACH

Jurgen Klinsmann (7): He started the same XI for the third straight time. The USMNT hasn’t done that since the 1930’s. That isn’t a typo. He also aligned the side in a 4-4-2, abandoning his experimental 4-3-3. These common sense changes helped the team on both sides of the ball, preserving a victory while down a man.