U.S. Earns Victory Over Turkey
U.S. Earns Victory Over Turkey avatar

Harrison, N.J. – The U.S. MNT continued on the road to Brazil with a 2-1 win over Turkey today at a sold out Red Bull Arena, in Harrison New Jersey.

The U.S. celebrate Fabian Johnson's goal against Turkey. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

The U.S. celebrate Fabian Johnson’s goal against Turkey. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

A 26 minute gem from Fabian Johnson staked the U.S. to a 1-0 lead, with Johnson and Michael Bradley pulling off a perfect 1-2 that Johnson finished superbly.

Jurgen Klinsmann made just three changes to the team that failed to impress in Tuesday’s dour 2-0 win over Azerbaijan, inserting Brad Davis, Tim Chandler, and captain Clint Dempsey with Alejandro Bedoya, DaMarcus Beasley and Chris Wondolowski giving way.

Gone were the heavy legs that slowed the opening game of the Send Off Series to a crawl, as both the U.S. and Turkey came out flying. Klinsmann had his side playing the diamond 4-4-2 formation once again, today’s iteration featuring two hungry strikers in Jozy Altidore and the returning Dempsey, who sat out the Azerbaijan match with a slight knock.

Offensively the diamond seemed to be working out just fine, but on the defensive end Turkey were exploiting huge gaps between the midfield and center backs. The U.S. defenders found themselves scrambling to cover far too often and were fortunate that the visitors suffered a couple bad misses in the opening stanza.

Brad Guzan, John Brooks, and Kyle Beckerman came on at the half for Tim Howard, Matt Besler and Jermaine Jones, as Klinsmann tries to get all of his players sharp for the World Cup.

Dempsey got the second and what turned out to be the game winner against Turkey. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

Dempsey got the second and what turned out to be the game winner against Turkey. (ISI Photos/John Todd)

Perhaps inevitably the pace slowed somewhat in the second half, but the home team got the crowd going with a second goal in the 52 minute. Dempsey was the scorer, tapping home after Turkey failed to clear Tim Chandler’s crossing ball.

Klinsmann introduced two of his most exciting young players, Julian Green and DeAndre Yedlin in the 64 minute, followed minutes later by Mix Diskerud. The game lost some of its fizz with all the changes, as Turkey likewise went to the bench.

The subs were happy with the chance to show what they can do and all acquitted themselves capably. Green, the 18 year old Bayern Munich prodigy admitted that Klinsmann’s pre-World Cup camp had been tough going for him at first.

“The first five or six days were a little bit difficult,” Green said after the match, referencing the shoulder injury he picked up in his April debut with the U.S. “But now I’m top fit,” Green said, adding, “every day a little better.”

Diskerud(ISI Photos/Brad Smith)

Diskerud will be happy doing whatever the coach wants.(ISI Photos/Brad Smith)

Diskerud came on in the second half for the second consecutive game with Klinsmann looking to the creative midfielder to provide instant offense. Although he’d rather start, Diskerud is happy to play the supersub if that’s what it takes to get on the pitch.

“If coach wants me to do that I have no problem playing that role.” Diskerud explained that, “as a soccer player you strive to play as much as possible, you want to start every game.” “My job,” the Norwegian-American added, “is to make it most difficult for him to choose those players, and if I come in as a sub to make a difference I have no problem doing that.”

Turkey got one back on a 90 minute penalty from Selcuk Inan after the Geoff Cameron saved off the line with his hand, after Tim Chandler left Guzan exposed.

The U.S. held on for the 2-1 win, giving a better, more energetic performance than on Tuesday in San Francisco, but the defense will have to be tightened considerably before facing Ghana.

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                        1 1 2
TUR                        0 1 1

USA – Fabian Johnson (Michael Bradley)   26th minute
USA – Clint Dempsey                                 52
TUR – Selcuk Inan (penalty)                       90

USA: 1-Tim Howard (12-Brad Guzan, 46); 23-Fabian Johnson (2-DeAndre Yedlin, 64), 20-Geoff Cameron, 5-Matt Besler (6-John Brooks, 46), 21-Timmy Chandler; 19-Graham Zusi (10-Mix Diskerud, 69), 13-Jermaine Jones (15-Kyle Beckerman, 46), 4-Michael Bradley, 14-Brad Davis (16-Julian Green, 64); 17-Jozy Altidore, 8-Clint Dempsey (capt.)
Subs Not Used: 3-Omar Gonzalez, 7-DaMarcus Beasley, 9-Aron Johannsson, 11-Alejandro Bedoya, 18-Chris Wondolowski, 22-Nick Rimando
Head coach: Jurgen Klinsmann

TUR: 12-Onur Recep Kivrak; 2-Hakan Kadir Balta (4-Ugur Demirok, 83), 24-Osman Tarik Camdal (17-Mustafa Pektemek, 46), 3-Ishak Dogan (26-Ahmet Ilhan Ozek, 46), 7-Gokhan Gonul, 8-Selcuk Inan, 9-Mevlut Erdinc (19-Bilal Kisa, 80), 10-Nuri Sahin (capt.) (5-Hakan Calhanoglu, 70), 15-Oguzhan Ozyakup (20-Olcan Adin, 67), 16-Ozan Tufan, 18-Caner Erkin
Subs Not Used: 1-Tolga Zengin, 11-Olcay Sahan, 13-Adem Buyuk, 21-Omer Toprak, 22-Aydin Karabulut, 23-Volkan Babacan, 25-Turgut Dogun Sahin
Head Coach: Fatih Terim

Stats Summary: USA / TUR
Shots: 8 / 20
Shots on Goal: 6 / 12
Saves: 11 / 3
Corner Kicks: 4 / 8
Fouls: 20 / 12
Offside: 2 / 1


About Peter Nolan

Peter Nolan is a staff writer for the GotSoccer Magazine, covering MLS and other US leagues, He's GotSoccer's chief National Team Correspondent.
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7 Responses to U.S. Earns Victory Over Turkey
U.S. Earns Victory Over Turkey avatar

  1. Joe R says:

    I was at the game and I think this report makes the US performance sound better than it was.

    USA was lucky to not be several goals down at halftime as Turkey were passing it around the top of the 18 and through the box with some ease, but didn’t score. We were totally exposed on our left.

    It will be hard for us to get through the group stage with this type defensive performance, which appears to be as much tactical as it is personnel.

    Tim Chandler’s giveaway that led to the Turkish goal was really bad.

    The bright spots were the keepers, Fabian Johnson and John Brooks.

    Seeing him in person, it’s clear that choosing Green vs. Donavon is an investment in the future, because he is not of Donovan’s quality now, and doesn’t have nearly his speed….not as dangerous and not a strong defender.

    • Peter Nolan says:

      I think you can boil down my report to, the attack looked good the defense was worrisome. Klinsmann felt that Bradley needed to drop back next to Bradley more in the second half, as he made adjustment to the diamond formation. I think it is a legitimate concern that Klinsmann seems to be trying to install a new formation at this late stage. The players and coach all downplay the new formation, but it does appear vulnerable defensively, although the attack does look more dangerous in this setup.

  2. David Osborne says:

    If the USA plays like they have the past two warm ups against Azerbaijan and Turkey respectively they will be torn apart by Germany Portugal and Ghana in the World Cup. They are terrible and what an idiot Klingsmann is for leaving out Donovan and taking Green along. Oh well it is the USA and they never play to win the Cup anyway.

  3. swampdaddy says:

    The perfect 1-2 that led to the 1st goal was fab & bradley…not Dempsey. C’mon man!!!

  4. Chance Hall says:

    Not exactly sure what the difference is between a “diamond” 4-4-2 and a regular 4-4-2. Anyway, I like the US going forward and trying to play possesion. However, most clubs/teams using a counter attack philosophy ensure their back line is secure before they attack. I also like seeing new blood on the team. However, I think Donovan would have been a welcome addition to any world cup team. This should have been his last chance at the cup. Agree that the offense looks promising, but the defense is just not right yet. I know this might sound negative, but it’s just an attempt at an honest observation. Go USA, let’s do this!

    • Peter Nolan says:

      The diamond is more of an attacking formation, but the way the U.S. have been playing it the defense has been lacking. The two central midfielders line up next to each other in a “flat” 4-4-2. In a diamond, one is more advanced. Klinsmann wants to get Bradley involved in the attack, against Turkey that worked, but Jermaine Jones was left alone with too many attackers to cover. I agree with you that Donovan should have made this team.

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