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The Kids Are Alright – Results Included

August 10, 2008

I was impressed with the resolve of of the U.S. Olympic team in their group match against the Netherlands. The U.S. started very shaky and had some trouble early with the fast pace of the game, going down 1-0 in the first half, but they did not get rattled and were able to weather the pressure. The U.S. was able to storm back with an improved performance in the second half. Sasha Kljestan worked well with Freddy Adu to score the equalizer and Josy Altidore was in the right place to redirect a rocket back into the box to put the U.S. up one with under 20 minutes to play. Sadly, the Dutch would score an equalizer with seconds left to tie the game at 2.

The Netherlands is a medal favorite, and it was a great feat to come back from a goal down to come within seconds of a win. Adu looked pretty good, Altidore made an instant impact, Stuart Holden played a good game despite a few big mistakes including the late fould that led to the goal. Kljestian’s goal was a great dribble and a calm finish. I also saw what McBride can add to this team. He was a calm leader, settling a young team. He held up the ball and his passing was deft. With the tie, the U.S. have to tie Nigeria to advance. It is going to be tough without Michael Bradley and Adu, who are serving suspensions, but this team does have some talent. I cannot wait to see Altidore for a full 90.

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